Almost Unschooling Grama Weekly Wrap-Up | December 2, 2016

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Hope you all have had a terrific week! The grandkids got home from Pennsylvania so I got to play with them for a few days. So much fun! I’ll be doing some blog posts about the things we did soon. Now I’m off to Iowa to help my folks out for a couple of months. My mom is having surgery next week, so please pray for a speedy recovery!

If you are new to this blog, each week I try to categorize all the posts I do on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest so you can easily find the ones that fit your family. Subscribe in the upper the right-hand corner to get this blog in your e-mail so you don’t miss out!

FAMILY VARIETY ACTIVITIES

Every year when my kids were growing up, I declared the time period between Thanksgiving and Christmas “ART MONTH”! We cut our formal lessons to the bare minimum and concentrated on making presents. A major activity was making cookies and treats for everyone we knew. I would buy tins at garage sales throughout the year and during “ART MONTH” we would fill them with mouth-watering treats. Are you celebrating “ART MONTH”?

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This is geared towards groups, but my kids would have loved doing this right at home. What about your kids? You could use this for review with any book or lesson!

http://ministry-to-children.com/yes-no-sticks/

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Do you know all of your neighbors? Have a baking day with your kids and then take goodies to them!

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BIBLE

 

http://adventuresinmommydom.org/king-josiah-lesson/

 

 

 

Get some party noisemakers and reenact the story of Jericho! If you don’t have any, you can use this link to order some and you can help me out at the same time! I get a small commission.

http://amzn.to/2fZpH3s

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LANGUAGE ARTS

 

Preschool

 

Your child may exhibit these signs when he/she is preschool age, but if he/she doesn’t, don’t worry! The average age for a child to be physically and mentally ready to read is 4 -12. Don’t push it!

http://thisreadingmama.com/ready-to-read-reading-readiness/

 

Elementary

 

Have your kids write a paragraph about how they would want to be decorated if they were a Christmas tree.

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Make paper ornaments with vocab words written on the backs. Put them on the tree. Then have your kids pick one or two each day and look up what it means.

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Ask your kids what they would do if Santa were stuck in a chimney.  Have them draw pictures and write a story.

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Name your elves. Then talk about what kinds of characteristics they have. Are they shy? athletic? What kinds of things are they interested in? Woodworking? electronics? Then write a story about a day in their lives.

If you don’t have any elves, you can buy some through this link and it will help support this page!

http://amzn.to/2gyTUDx

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Middle School – High School

 

Make a crossword puzzle from words in a Christmas song and let your kids guess which song the puzzle is about. Then challenge them to make one for you!

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SCIENCE

 

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MATH

 

Preschool

 

Make a Christmas tree from construction paper or felt. Then make several cards with numbers on them on different colored construction paper. Place these in a bowl. Have your little one draw out one and decorate the tree by putting that number of sequins, beads or pom-poms of that color on the tree. Older kids can pull two and add them together.

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Elementary

 

How to Play Dice War (Subtraction) Good Math Games

 

Middleschool and Up

Can’t say enough good about this game! It was a favorite at my house for years! If you don’t have it in your house, please consider buying it through this link and help support this page!

http://amzn.to/2gsigPk

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SOCIAL STUDIES

Is there a National Guard or a military base near you? Call to see if you can get a tour! Great field trip! Find out about how it came to being and where those stationed at that base have served.

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MUSIC

Free music therory course!

https://www.musiclessons.com/youtube/#6gHEIF0rT2w

 

ART

Have your child pick his/her favorite piece of art you have in your home. It can be a painting, a craft, a figurine, quilt, or whatever they love. Then have him/her describe the piece. What is the medium? What do you like about the lines, colors, textures, etc.? Where is it in your home? What makes that place a good place to display it? And anything else they can think of to describe it. This could make a great dinner time discussion or a blog post for older kids!

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Something fun to do with all those broken crayons!

http://heatherednest.com/2016/11/melted-crayon-art-diy-christmas-ornaments.html

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BABIES AND TODDLERS

 

Sensory Crawl Infant and Toddler Activity {Huggies Little Movers}

 

HIGH SCHOOL AND COLLEGE

 

Ask Jeanne: Do Homeschoolers Get a Diploma?

 

 

ISSUES AND ENCOURAGEMENT

 

More parents taking kids’ learning into their own hands

http://www.argusleader.com/story/news/education/2016/11/26/more-parents-taking-kids-learning-into-their-own-hands/93925296/

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God Bless You All!

~Grama Sue

Will it float?

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The other day we did an experiment using an orange and a pitcher of water. I asked the kids if they thought the orange would float. My grandson thought it was pretty light so it would float. Since he’s the oldest, the others agreed.

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We put the orange in the pitcher of water and indeed it did float!

Then I peeled the orange and asked the kids if they thought it would still float. They were just sure it would because it was lighter now.

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UGGH! It sunk right down!

I explained that there were two reasons for this. First, the orange peel has a lot of little air pockets in it that float in the water and secondly, the shape of the orange had changed. It was no longer shaped like a boat.

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We decided to see if the orange would float if we put it back in the “boat”, but it turned over the the “boat” and sank.

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We had fun for a while trying different ways to “float” the orange, but they didn’t work. Then the kids started throwing the orange in the water sending water all over the place (imagine that). So, this mean grandma said that’s enough!

Try this with your kids and let me know what their hypothosis’ are!

God Bless You All!

~Grama Sue

Changes | Schedules | Dealing With Wrenches | Routines

It’s been a rough few weeks. I don’t do change well. Trying to switch from garden mode to winter mode is hard enough, Then, I got so sick I had to go to the doctor. Grampa Tom is supposed to be in the field, but it keeps being put on hold because of rain, kids schedules have changed more than once.  I feel like I just can’t get any kind of routine going! It’s an elusive goal but, I really need a routine!

In spite of it all the kids have thrived! The Brown One has learned some important life skills: finding the front of his underpants and how much toilet paper to use when he poops.

He has also made some fun discoveries. One day, he was “washing” a big metal spoon. He asked if it was plastic. I told him “No, it’s metal.”

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“Oh!” he exclaimed, “That means my letter magnets will stick to it!” And he proceeded to find some letters to stick to it. Then came the discovery! The letters would stick to the convex side of the spoon, but they would not stick to the concave side because the magnet couldn’t actually touch the spoon. He tried it with several letters just to be sure, but finally decided it just wouldn’t work. We talked about why and he seemed to understand 🙂

He has also learned to “read” a book all by himself! It just has two words on each page, which he has memorized, but he diligently points to each word as he “reads” it. That’s an important step in reading readiness!

And of course Sissy is busy learning all the things that 6 month olds do, She’s starting to eat solid food, getting up on her hands and knees and chewing on anything within reach 🙂

At one point, my inability to function worried me terribly, but over the years, I’ve learned that kids will learn in spite of me. I just need to roll with the changes and recognize the things they learn!

What has your child learned in spite of you?

 

Reading Readiness and More

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This is one of  The Brown One’s favorite books. It’s called WORDS: My First Words Book by Playmore Inc. I picked it up at a thrift store for a buck sometime back.

The Brown One is still a little too busy most of the time to sit still and listen to a whole book being read to him, but with this book it doesn’t matter. We flip from page to page as he pleases and “read” the words. I put my finger on the word he want’s to read and sound it out slowly before putting the whole word together. I talk about the different letters and the sounds they make and if there is a letter combination in the word that makes a different sound like “ch” or “er” I point that out too.  At first, he paid no attention to me, but now he is starting to repeat what I say.

We  identify colors; discuss living and non living things, where food comes from; explore celebrations; consider dressing for the weather; and count things in this book! Just from this one little toddler board book we’re covering language arts, art, science, social studies, health and math! You can do this too. Take any activity that your child enjoys and find creative ways to cover 2 or more subjects.

 

Planting Potatoes

Wish I had a picture of the look on The Brown One’s face when I pulled this monster potato out of my store room, but you’ll have to use your imagination.

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“WHAT IS THAT!” He exclaimed.  I told him it was a potato that was trying to grow. I love spontaneous learning activities, so I suggested we cut a piece of it off and  plant it.

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I explained that the funny looking things that were growing out of the potato were roots and that if we cut off a part of the potato and planted it in some soil it would grow more potatoes. So we put this section of it in a pot and cooked the rest for lunch.

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A couple of weeks later The Brown One was delighted to find that his potato was growing!

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Today was warm enough that we thought we could put it outside.

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We put it in the middle of a tire and then  put dirt and some old hay around it.

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Since it was pretty  tall we put another tire over it and more dirt. Then, since it’s still pretty cold and the chickens are able to get into the garden right now, we put a piece of glass on top. We will keep putting tires and dirt around the stem as it grows and see how many potatoes we can grow from this one little potato part.

This is a great little science project. We’ll get a little math in there too when we count the potatoes after we dig them up later.