Monday, September 29, 2008
Next we gathered up pine cones and fallen needles. The lowest branches were too high for us to gather any green needles. The boys quickly discovered the sheath at the bottom of the three- needled bundles. Our needles measured between 9 and 10 inches. We also noticed that the foliage was toward the end of the branches and on the upper side with the pine cones hanging down. The bark was light and dark gray and it was in scales.
After we got home we examined the cones and even found a seed with its wing. Our cones did have a little spine and the closed cones were very painful to carry. We drew the scale and the seed.
We did both a needle rubbing and a bark rubbing along with our nature journal enty.
This was a very fascinating study and was enjoyed by all! (Special thanks to our kind neighbors for letting us roam their yard gathering up needles and cones.)
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Once we were away from home and came across the Lace-bark Elm. We didn't know what it was so we named it the tiger bark tree until we could get home to look it up. Now whenever we see it we always remember solving the mystery.
Now we live in a new town and we are looking forward to discovering what trees live in our neighborhood. This week we went out to look at the trees and primarily we talked about the parts of the tree. The boys picked up the names quickly and in turn tested their grandmother to see if she could name the parts.
I think the boys mostly enjoyed climbing the trees and making leaf rubbings in their journals. We also drew a tree and labeled its parts.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
We were able to see the flower accomplishing its task- due to the fact that they were attracting numerous bees. The bees caused the boys to not want to get too close, but they were able to see the separate flowers that make up the whole sunflower.
They enjoyed pulling back the florets and spying the seeds underneath. This has been a helpful study because we have other composite flowers in our yard and around town that the boys are able to compare with the sunflower.
After finishing our study we did a watercolor of Van Gogh's painting, Sunflowers in a Vase.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Fruit Filled Oatmeal Bars
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup quick oats
2/3 cup brown sugr
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup butter
1 cup of your favorite jam
In a mixing bowl combine flour, oats, brown sugar and baking soda. Cut in butter till mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Reserve 1 cup of the flour mixture. Press remaining flour mixture into the bottom of an ungreased 8x8 pan. Spread with desired jam. Sprinkle with reserved flour mixture. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until the top is golden. Cut into bars.
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
Higher Up and Further In, is full of information on the Charlotte Mason method of Homeschooling. She gives sample schedules and answers many questions regarding the How To's.
The following two blogs are by the same person. They are amazing helps if you are using, The Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock, or Drawing With Children by Mona Brooks. If you are not using either of these books you will find plenty of ideas for Nature Walks along with weekly challenges to get outdoors. On the second link you will find art tutorials and weekly assignments for "Sketch Tuesday." I highly recommend both blogs.
The following blog is full of seasonal ideas and organization plans. She has, for each month, a Plans and Themes page. I find this helpful in thinking about all the possibilities for the month. She also has a "tea and craft" time where she teaches her children about Catholic saints. I am not Catholic, but this is a great idea for teaching Church History or about special Christians with whom you want your children to be familiar.