I have been obsessed with all these cute book nooks and teepees. So I’d been thinking of a way to make it work for me and my kiddos. I found it! Shower curtains! Why should shower curtains be restricted to the suddy, steamy messy room that houses the commode. No! I will liberate the shower curtain! Free it from its prison and present it as an offering to my messy kids!
This past weekend I had the pleasure of helping my sister host a baby shower. We had some cups left over and in the blur of exhaustion set the cups down on the floor by the front door. Days later (don’t judge me) I finally picked up the cups. Did I mention we have a dog, a various curious dog who I am sure put her nose in the cups. So what was I to do with these paper cups? Games!
I took the cups and put letters and numbers on them. I told the kids it was game day and I set the game rules they had a blast!
For the Math Game we used our Base Ten blocks and put the appropriate tens and ones inside the cup to make the number.
As the kids filled the cup I would stack them. They loved seeing the stack grow as a mark of their accomplishments.
We then flipped the cups over and used the letters to make words. Once the kids discovered a word I would write it on the white board. My kids are motivated by praise and a sense of accomplishment so seeing there progress is important for them.
Last week SJ was out of town. She got back Saturday night, we went to church Sunday and started up with school again Monday. She was pretty wiped out and after a week of informal school with KJ we needed something to look forward to. So we told the kids we would go on a field trip and today we went to Riley Farms.
It was really fun. We took a nice hike from the main cabin where we picked up a map to the apple orchards. The hike was less than a mile and the kids got to learn the proper way to pick apples. Once the apples were picked they were weighed and we paid for them.
The grounds are really neat. They have sheep on property, colonial toys, a bakery, even a cabin. The kids and I finished reading Meet Addy which takes place during the colonial era and so we got to go inside the cabin giving them a visual to a setting similar to the cabin in the book.
It was a fun, informative day, and its only 15 minutes from our house so I see many visits to this farm in the near future.
I am loving the tile floor in our classroom and all the cool new ways I am learning to utilize it. This past week I used it for both a sight word and math drill. I define drill as anything I want the kids to answer at a rapid pace.
For our sight word drill, I placed one flash card per tile. The flashcards are double sided. One side is written in blue the other in red. I placed the cards red side up.
When I say the word the kids run to that word and flip it to the blue side. I had to do one child at a time because my kids are so competitive. Once all the cards were flipped to blue I would say the blue word and they got to pick the card up.
For the math drill I allowed both kids to play simultaneously. SJ (5) worked independently since she can count in her head. KJ (3) and I worked together since he still uses his fingers for math.
I placed one equation per tile square on the floor and I gave each kid a stack of cards raging 1 through 10.
I had 30 equations and 20 answer cards so we had to improvise and double up some of the tiles. This is a game we will play often I’m sure.
This game could use any equations, so it is something that is easy to utilize as a learning tool that grows with the kids.
You can also use puzzle mat pieces to play tile learning games, check them out here!
For more math game ideas click here!
Last night was crazy! I didn’t get home from church until late, I barely made it home without falling asleep. I went straight to bed and woke up at almost 8 this morning! School starts at 9 ya’ll! So I make breakfast (eggs, potatoes, and tomatoes) and sent my husband to the store. We were out of many things but the most important thing we were missing was coffee. I managed to start school on time but without my daily devotion time AND coffee I’m all out of sorts.
After our daily review the kids wanted to play outside because starting late this morning also meant they lost out on their morning playtime. So we took school outside. The kids used chalk to write their letters. I was pleasantly surprised that KJ could write so well.
We then gathered leaves, glued them to a paper then talked about what was the same and what was different about the leaves. Even Princess AJ joined us!
We ventured back in the house worked on some sight words, read a few books and the kids worked in their math books. Before I knew it, it was noon. I instituted quiet time for an hour and the rest of the day the kids get to play.
I did not follow the lesson plan for today but after writing it I guess we got more done than I realized. I’m getting used to going with the flow when it comes to my children’s education. I want them to learn the way they learn so that means being unconventional with their learning.
As I am visiting with a friend I hear the water running outside
I yell out the screen door. “KJ turn off that water!” “Okay mom!” He replies and I hear the faucet is being shut off. A few minutes later I hear the water running again.
“Is that water back on?”
“Yes.” He sighs knowing he is in big trouble.
“Come inside and go get in the bed until I come talk to you.”
“I was just trying to water the grass,” he mumbles as he comes in and goes to his room.
I turn to my friend an explain to her KJ’s position.
“I was just trying to water the grass, after all in the heat of summer the grass is now in patches in the backyard. The grass needed water. What was the big deal? I was being helpful. I was doing what needed to be done. I took initiative and now I am being punished for it. I don’t understand.”
As I went on and on she stopped me and said, “Okay, okay I get it.”
See this is how we are when it comes to things that God tells us not to do. We hear it all the time, “the road to hell is paved with good intentions.” In fact that is one of my favorite quotes. The problem wasn’t that he was watering the grass. He was being disobedient. He thought he could see and understand things I couldn’t. He was mistaken. Isn’t this how we are with God. We see an opportunity and though God tells us to stop, wait, or move we decide on our own. We know He is older than us, wiser than us, stronger than us but we still want to do what we feel is right based on the information we have on hand. Isaiah 55:8-9
My sweet boy had forgotten that just a few days earlier as soon as the sprinklers were turned off a very large snake crossed the yard. He does not realize that our state is in a drought and he has absolutely no idea that the water he is frivolously using is a utility that needs to be paid for. In his mind he was doing the right thing.
It blesses me so much when God allows me to see myself in my children, because once I see myself in them I am better able to respond to them as close as I can to the way God responds to me.