Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Outdoor Hour Challenge #40 Weather #2

This morning we had just a few clouds that we labeled cirrostratus. Although there were only a few clouds in the sky they were unusual clouds.
It looked like when you take an eraser and rub it in a straight line across a blue background, which is what we did to get the same effect on our notebook page.
Then we checked our outdoor weather station to find the temperature, wind speed and direction, and precipitation.

We copied all this information onto the great notebooking page that Barb provided for us. This challenge was specifically a seasonal challenge. Therefore we will be repeating the same exercises each season to compare the differences in the weather. We are already looking forward to the winter challenge and plan to record our findings on a snow day.

This is a rain gauge that the boys just had to have. They reasoned that they could read it from the inside of the house on a rainy day.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Catching Butterflies In November

Last week we had one very windy day. The boys loved it because it blew up a big pile of leaves, which is always fun.
But the big adventure was catching butterflies. November is not a time of year that I normally think of as prime time for catching butterflies, but the boys caught at least 14. We already knew the names of many of them, but a few we had to look up. The boys drew two of them in their nature journals.

Black Swallowtail

The Dog Face Butterfly, so named because you can see an outline of a poodle near the top of his wings.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Hearts and Trees Fall Kit

Here the boys are working hard on their tissue paper collage.

The boys loved doing this art project that was included in the Hearts and Trees Fall Kit. We traced leaves, that we had collected, onto our paper with a permanent black pen. Then we pasted on little pieces of a special tissue paper that bleeds. This was an easy project that turned out very beautiful.

Here is the final product!

Outdoor Hour Challenge #39 Weather

This week there has not been a cloud in the sky! Nevertheless, we have completed weather observations three times this week. We have had beautiful clear skies, with temperatures in the low 70's. It has been a great week to be outdoors.

My oldest son has been very glad to be doing a weather challenge. He has rain gauges of various sizes, thermometers, barometers, and wind gauges that he keeps an eye on. He has learned the cloud names and is working on a photographic book of clouds.

As much as we have studied the weather in the past we found the chapter in, The Handbook of Nature Study, on water forms to be wonderful. We loved the way she used the picture of the invisible cap and the "magic" word cold that causes the invisible hat to come off. Her explainations of condensation and evaporation were very visual and we had fun retelling it.

Here is an example of cumulus clouds we made using Amanda's watercolor technique #6 .
Instead of dropping the alcohol onto the paper, we used our cotton swab to shape clouds.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Our Thankful Tree

Here is our Thankful Tree. It has been fun adding new leaves each day. It is right by our dining table so we are able to read the leaves and talk about other things we want to add each time we eat. This was very simple to make and such a great way to practice daily gratitude.
“Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Friday, November 14, 2008

Outdoor Hour Challenge #17- Leaf Parts

This week in our Nature study we focused on leaf parts. Although we did not look at garden flowers we utilized the Outdoor Hour Challenge #17 to study the parts of a leaf. It worked out well that we had participated in Home Depot's Kids Workshop, earlier this month, where the boys each made a leaf press.
The boys really liked watching Barb's tutorial of how to draw a leaf. After viewing the tutorial they were eager to try it out for themselves.

While drawing their leaves we talked about each leaf part and practiced using the proper names.

We were all very satisfied with the end results. Thanks Barb!

Thursday, November 06, 2008

A Day At The Nature Reserve

These are some pictures from a day at the Nature Reserve or as our little one keeps saying, "the Nature Journal." We love spending time here, but I must say it is not as easy hiking the trails when you are almost 8 months pregnant.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Watch Party

Well, it has finally arrived...Election Day. It seems like we have been hearing about the election for years now. The boys have been thoroughly caught up in it all. They have watched the debates, made political cartoons, and questioned family members over who they were voting for. Since early in the race they have been spotting yard signs and reporting on what they have seen. They went with us to the voting place and watched as we voted. It has been a great learning experience.

So, for their enjoyment I decided to have a little watch party for them tonight. We have decorated the house with red and blue signs, flags, and we even ordered some campaign buttons which we received in the mail yesterday. They made copies of the buttons for some of their stuffed animals. This morning as soon as they finished their lessons we went and bought Eagle Webkinz and a blue star balloon for the celebration.

Tonight we are planning to have hotdogs and hamburgers followed by an election night cake. Then we are headed to the courthouse to hear the results of the local elections. After that we will come home and see how the presidential election is coming along.