Wednesday, April 30, 2008

May Plans

Here are some of the important dates and holidays
that fall in May....

National Bike Month
Flower Month
Clean Air Month
Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
Get Caught Reading Month

Thursday May 1, 2008

National Postcard Week

May Day
Empire State Building Opened in 1931

Mother Goose Day

Space Day

Friday May 2, 2008

Holocaust Remembrance Day
Leonardo DaVinci died 1579

Saturday May 3, 2008

National Scrapbooking Day
World Press Freedom Day

Cousin Michael's B-Day

Uncle Fred's B-Day

Sunday May 4, 2008

National Music Week

International Firefighter's Day
Zimmerli Museum's Free Day
Monday May 5, 2008

Cinco de Mayo
First American in Space 1961
John Scopes arrested for teaching Darwinism 1926
Great Uncle Reuby's B-Day
Paul's 5th B-Day

Tuesday May 6, 2008

Hindenburg Disaster 1937
National Teacher Day
Robert Perry B-Day 1856
Sigmund Freud B-Day 1856
Uncle Michael B-Day

Homeschool Group Open Play Date

Wednesday May 7, 2008

Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky's B-Day 1840

Thursday May 8, 2008

Harry Truman's B-Day 1884
VE Day 1945

Friday May 9, 2008

Peter Pan Day
John Brown's B-Day 1800
Beatles signed 1st recording contract 1962 (this is for CherMere)

Saturday May 10, 2008

Astronomy Day
1st Transcontinental Railway Completed 1869
Giant Squid Attack 1847
National Bake Sale Day

Sunday May 11, 2008

National Police Week National Transportation Week

Mother's Day
Minnesota Admission Day 1858

Monday May 12, 2008

Florence Nightingale's B-Day 1820
Kite Day

Tuesday May 13, 2008

Tulip Day
Homeschool Group Open Play Date

Wednesday May 14, 2008

1st US Space Station Launched 1973
Lewis & Clark Expedition Began 1803

Thursday May 15, 2008

International Day of Families
US Department of Agriculture created 1862
L.F. Baum's B-Day

Friday May 16, 2008

Biographer's Day
1st US Nickel Minted 1866

Saturday May 17, 2008

Armed Forces Day
NY Stock Exchange Established 1792
Brown vs Board of Education 1954

Sunday May 18, 2008

Buckle Up America Week
National Backyard Games Week

Mount St Helens Erupted 1980
Visit Your Relatives Day
Peace Day

Monday May 19, 2008

Frog Jump Day Lawrence of Arabia Died 1935
Victoria Day
Circus Day
Caleb's B-Day

Tuesday May 20, 2008

Charles Lindbergh began transatlantic flight 1932
Christopher Columbus died 1506
Dolley Madison B-Day 1768
Cousin Stephanie's B-Day
Aunt Lisa's B-Day
Homeschool Group Open Play Date

Wednesday May 21, 2008

Amelia Earhart flew solo across the Atlantic 1932
American Red Cross established 1881

Thursday May 22, 2008

Buy an Instrument Day

Friday May 23, 2008

National Turtle Day

South Carolina Admission Day 1788

Wright Brothers patented aircraft 1906

Saturday May 24, 2008

Brooklyn Bridge Opened 1883
1st Telegraph Message Transmitted 1844

Sunday May 25, 2008

Fork Debuted in US 1630
International Jazz Day
Jesse Owens broke 3 world records 1935
National Missing Children's Day

Monday May 26, 2008

Memorial Day
Sally Ride's B-Day 1951
Dorothea Lange's B-Day 1895

Tuesday May 27, 2008

Golden Gate Bridge Opened 1937
Rachel Carson's B-Day 1907
Masking Tape Patented
Homeschool Group Open Play Date

Wednesday May 28, 2008

Jim Thorpe's B-Day 1888
Sierra Club Founded 1892

Thursday May 29, 2008

Hillary & Tenzing reached summit of Mt Everest 1953
Rhode Island Admission Day 1790
Wisconsin Admission Day 1848
John F. Kennedy's B-Day

Friday May 30 , 2008

Indianapolis 500 debuted 1911
Lincoln Memorial dedicated 1927

Saturday May 31, 2008

US Copyright Law Enacted 1790
World No Tobacco Day

Now, before you get too excited, we use this as a "starting point".
We may never learn about all this, we may head off completely in another direction.
We are still studying birds, I will use the state birds (see above states celebrating admission days this month) as well as birds that we see or that Princess has an interest in. May 1st we will do "geese",
because it is Mother Goose Day.We will also toss any and all "plans" aside for a drive down to the shore
or a walk in the park. The garden is a high priority as well around here, so a lot of our lessons happen outside.

Spank Out Day!

My friend Frankie reminded me that it is

Need more info? Check this out or this.
Now I just have to find the time to post our plans for May.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Read with Kids Challenge

My friend told me about a reading challenge going on here readwithkidschallenge
There is even a chance to win a vacation.
I am so in! Care to join me?

In the are some books we are currently reading..
One Year in Beijing
Those of you who have been reading here for a while will not
be surprised to see this book on our list. Princess has a love
of China and it's culture, it's people. The most common foreign
language spoken in our town is Mandarin Chinese.With a "journal" style
format,this story follows a year long journey in the life of an 8 year old girl living in Beijing.
The culture,family life...Princess has been loving it.

Roller Coaster
Princess also loves roller coasters. Not so much the riding on them,
but the creating them. One of the first (and still her favorite) computer games
was Roller Coaster Tycoon.This book takes you on a roller coaster from the waiting in line,
possibly changing your mind to ride it at all (oh yeah..that would be me)to the clickity,clack.Up.Up.Up.
To the dizzy,wobbly knees of the people getting off.
I'd much rather read this than ride a roller coaster, in fact if you ever see me at an amusement park,
most likely I will be sitting on a bench, reading a book,while waiting for the rest of my party to get off the roller coaster or other rides. It makes Farmer Dad a bit nuts, but it works for me.

JACK and the Night Visitors
This is a wordless picture book about a boy who has some "late night visitors"
who like to play. He knows no one would believe him, so he tries to trap one.
It becomes clear his visitor does not want to stay however, so he helps him
to go home. The illustrations are nice and Princess enjoyed this more than I thought she would.

Little RED Cap
The illustrations are soft and lovely and we really enjoyed this translation of the classic Brothers Grimm book. Princess enjoyed the somewhat violent ending, but if your children are more sensitive this may not be an appropriate book for them.

I have been enjoying this book a lot, finding many ideas to use with
Princess.It is geared from Kindergarten to third grade and would be
an asset to any Mom's bookshelf, homeschooling or not.
I leave you with some pictures of Princess "being Daddy" yesterday.

She wore a rain jacket for her "lab coat" and played chemist.
She had a very funny running commentary that I should have video taped
for sure. I just wasn't quick enough.
She even took a "tea break",lol.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Unplugged Group Birds Project

Mom Unplugged is back with a group project on Birds this week.
If you join in, link back so we can all come see what you did.
Even if you don't join in, (and why wouldn't you?)stop by and
see what everyone else did.

Here is our contribution this week. Princess has started a "bird wall".
She is coloring and cutting out pictures of birds she wants to learn about
or just really likes. Our plan is to study them and make some lapbooks
as we do.Today she actually decided to do the small pieces (the owl's eyes and beak)all by herself. Normally, she would have asked me to do that part.
She did a great job.
We have a lovely pair of cardinals in our yard,
so we started with that. Since she colored the male, here is a photo
of the female in our fig tree outside my kitchen window. She always lets me
know if the feeder is low or empty! Normally, she does not allow me to take her
picture, unlike her hubby,who just loves having his picture taken.
Here is Pumpkin watching the birds at the feeder early this morning.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

AG Day!

and so we loaded up our wagon and ourselves into

our truck and off we went. It was cooler than the last

few days, and lots of people, but we had some fun anyway.

We walked all around the vendor tables and booths, and all around the pond.

The New Jersey Folk Festival was on the other side of the pond, so we purchased some

cotton candy and enjoyed the music for a while. We stopped over at Farmer Dad's Community Garden Plot, on our way over to see the animals and upon leaving we ran into our favorite Camp Katie campers with their family. We all stopped off to have some henna tattoos done

at a booth raising money for Operation Smile and then headed over to see the animals.

Princess really enjoys the sights and smells of the animals and she enjoyed petting everything but the goats..they did not come close enough. The children's favorite was the peeing cow!

Oh yes, it was as gross as it sounds, but we were fortunate enough to be far away from the splashing. Princess has decided she desperately wants a 4H jacket..still another few months

before she is old enough to join. Our friends were heading over to the music festival, and we were surely heading into a melt down, so we left for home after purchasing a hot dog and drying some tears. We missed our other good friends, but they stopped by to see us on their way home. Farmer Dad and I had some dinner and we all watched some t.v. to settle down after a stroll though the garden to check on the plants.We also baked up some hot pretzels to celebrate National Pretzel Day. Yum!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Can you smell Summer?

We sure did today. Sunblock,sea breezes,
ahhhh..the Jersey Shore.
We had a lovely day with the "Camp Katie Girls".
Playing in the surf (brrr it was cold!), looking for shells.
This beach even has a climber on it..and some dead looking palm trees.(wt?)We packed enough food and drinks to keep everyone happy for most of the day,
then we got ice cream on the boardwalk before heading home.
Good friends, sunshine..feels like Summer to me!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Camp Katie Day the Earth Day edition.

I hope everyone had a happy Earth Day!
We had a gorgeous day here in the Garden State.
Princess and I spent the day with the daughters of our good friends
having a "Camp Katie Day-Earth Day Celebration".
The girls played on the porch for a bit with the dollhouses,
and then we went outside to play in the yard. I set up a
"reading blanket" under an umbrella with a big stack of library books
and a couple of board games. We brought out a few other fun outdoor
toys like Princess's tunnel and bouncy ball.We read a few books about
recycling and composting and then we used some grey water I had from
cooking potatoes and asparagus for dinner the night before to water the garden.
We also brought the kitchen scraps out to the compost pile and buried them along with
the fruit scraps from our morning snack.
We talked about growing our own food, and taking care of the earth and so many
other things. It was a delight to spend my day with three lovely young ladies
and to watch them enjoy being together. The girls went inside to play dress up and even put on a little "wedding ceremony" Princess is the "husband".
Very "Jersey Guy" with her Giants shirt and khakis.;-) You should have seen them "boogieing down "at the reception! Then we were back outside to play some more and read some more.
After reading Bats on the Beach,they all wanted to go to the beach,
so they played in the sandbox in P's make believe beach.
Here they are playing the Angelina Ballerina game.

Their Mom brought lunch and we all hung out outside enjoying the afternoon in the sun until a bit after Farmer Dad returned home from work.
They really lucked out with good weather for their "spring break" from school.
The three girls separated after only a little bit of whining and a promise of a fun "field trip" together later in the week.Princess was very excited to receive a pair of cool boots one of the girls outgrew and wore them for the rest of the evening. Here she is picking some violets in the grass.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Happy Earth Day !!

"Judge each day not by the harvest you reap but by the seeds you plant."---Robert Louis Stevenson

I wish all of you a lovely Earth Day! We will be celebrating with a Camp Katie Day
filled with fun in our backyard. I'm going to give the girls some seeds to plant and bring home
and we will do some outdoors crafting no doubt. Hopefully the weather will cooperate for a
visit to a local park in the afternoon. Remember to practice your 3 Rs !

Tuesday Book Post

Yikes! In Seven Wild Adventures,Who Would You Be?
Five wacky adventures filled with colorful characters, pick your
fave and keep reading to find out how the story ended.
Princess loves a rhyming, fast paced story, and this was a fun read.

Adorable Wearables That Teach Early Concepts
Reproducible patterns for easy to make paper products
that kids can wear. ABC vests,weather mittens etc.
Not really sure how much we would use this, but Princess
picked it out so we will give it a try.

Eight Animals on the Town Ocho Animales
Princess always enjoys books that give words in a foreign language.
This has Spanish laced throughout.It also rhymes..and you know
how we like that. We also enjoyed the art work.

The Perfect Nest
We loved this book! A cat sets up the "perfect nest" hoping
to entice a chicken to lay an egg so he can make an omelet.
His nest looks so good a chicken a duck and a goose all show up
and lay claim to and an egg in the nest. He finally convinces them all to leave
so he can get at the eggs, and the eggs crack. The three little babies decide
Jack the Cat is their Momma and run him ragged until finally they all fall asleep
in what truly is the "perfect nest".
So cute!!

Mom and Me Cookbook Have fun in the kitchen!
I would not have brought it home just because we already
have cookbooks for children and I don't think this one has anything
"special" in it, but Princess picked it out and so we'll give it a try.
The directions look quite simple and easy to follow and Princess
likes the photographs.

Now, what are you reading? For all the Moms with little ones who say they never have
time to read for themselves, this would be a great week to have "reading time"
for you too. Maybe start a "reading hour"? Princess has long ago accepted that Momma
needs her reading time or things get ugly quick around here. Since she still needs my help
more often than not to "read" on her own, I like to read when she is doing puzzles,coloring
or playing with toys.I also read when she is watching a movie, but since this is Turn Off the TV Week...
My point is, make sure your children see you enjoying reading, that is one of the best ways to create
a reader.Really. It's right up there with "read to them every day".

Monday, April 21, 2008

Turn off the T.V. and turn ON your kid!

This is National Turn OFF the TV Week.
Our household will only be participating during the day, are some ideas ...

Read a book..any book to your kids.Read a you like, one they (each?)like,
you get the idea. Now, go into the kitchen and make a snack that "goes" with the books chosen.
Even if it's only one of them. Really, you can do this. What are the characters eating? drinking?
Make it easy on yourself and pick a book you know you can "work a theme" around.
Can't come up with any ideas? Ask your kids. I bet they have some good ideas.

We will be reading Gail Gibbons's Recycle! today and then I will have Princess
help me bring the recycling containers out to the garage and separate them.
Maybe we will make a craft with some materials about to be trashed.

Have a plastic lid from a coffee can (pringles lid etc) have your little one draw or paint a picture
on it poke a hole in the top ,string it up and hang in the window either with a suction cup or from
the lock.It's fun and fits in great with a recycling for Earth Day theme. You could have them draw
something from the theme of the book they enjoyed most from earlier. ;-)

How about making today or tomorrow Puzzle Day? All ages can do a puzzle.
They can draw their own pictures on the back of a cereal box and have Mom or Dad
help cut out in puzzle form and enjoy. You could cut a sandwich like a puzzle using a knife or cookie cutters,
or this desert here.
OK, sorry it was late getting out..blogger would not let me post, but have fun!
I'm having trouble posting pics, but I'll get them on eventually.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Overcast with a chance of sprinkles...

Can I get mine on a cupcake? Seriously, where did the sun go?
It has been warm (even hot) lately here in the Garden State, but
today it feels much cooler without the sun.
We are heading out to see ET on a movie screen today.
Princess has been asking for this for sooo long, and I found
a theater that is showing it today, for free. Naturally, she is
"not really in the mood to go to the movies today".
Oh well, we're going. Here are some shots of Daddy's Little Girl
yesterday. She spent most of the day with my sister at the nearest Lakeshore
Store for their Earth Day Celebration. mr ray was there, so it was a "can't miss" event.
She brought home a flower pot with some type of flower seed in one seemed to know
what kind.I spent the day starting flower seeds as well, and planting and weeding a bit.
It really looks like spring around here.
Don't forget this is National Turn Off the T.V. Week. We will post a different idea
each morning to do with your little ones, if you are not giving up the computer.
I am not. ;-) I will try to have it up by 8am EST for those of you who are limiting
your computer time..I will be.

Edited to add pictures and say we will only be giving up the tv
during the day time.We don't watch it much any way, and the other two people
in this house did not agree with my great idea to join in and Discovery Channel just started the new season for Deadliest Catch and I think this is Alaska Week..we don't want to miss it and I'm out of vhs tapes.

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My homeschool buddies and I are all posting pics of our "home schools" as part of our idea sharing.

Plato said...

Knowledge which is acquired under compulsion has no hold on the mind. Therefore do not use compulsion, but let early education be a sort of amusement; you will then be better able to discover the child's natural bent .