Saturday, October 29, 2016

Sci Fri: Silent Sudsy Science

Our bubble-making science was intended for Ms.C. However, Ms. O was making scientific hypothesis and creating tests, for an hour!

She discovered prisms, light reflecting to create colour, surface tension (a solution saturated straw poking through), force and played with size and shape.

Pumpkin Still Life

Before seguing into Still Life, we conducted a wee buoyancy experiment with our Jack-be-Littles...

Then I asked that everyone sketch a pumpkin, noting only three aspects:
2. lines and
3. stem
These would be transferred to watercolour paper with oil pastels.

When O created her sketch, their was a center with lines extending outwards.
I was curious which perspective she had drawn, so I asked from where she was looking at the pumpkin.
Sure enough, she replied that she was looking down.

By using oil pastels to outline the shape and detail before painting in watercolour, we were playing with another science experiment; density and surface tension.

Sci Fri: Expanding Pumpkin

Opting for orange expanding pumpkins, we re-created this mezmerizing science activity with the help of Bitz 'N Giggles and Co2

Friday, October 28, 2016

Lavender Night Masks

No chance to sew is turned away in our house.
Rather it is a mad race for the machine!

We chose some fabric, measured the length and width of our foreheads and began snipping and sewing a long pillow pocket.

Then we mixed rice and lavender flowers and essential oil, before funneling it into our pillows.

Vegan Bites: Lavender Lemon Macaroons

I completely underestimated these cookies.
By the looks, you're not in for much of a treat.
Not so. These are fantastic coconutty macaroons with a surprise twist of lemon and lavender.
Adapted from Laura Miller's, "Vegan, Raw, Not Gross."

Lavender Lemon Macaroons
~3c coconut
~1c oat flour
~1/2t salt
~2t lavender flowers
~1 lemon rind, grated
~1/3c coconut oil
~1c maple syrup
Mix dry. Mix wet. Combine.
Drop in tiny scoops onto baking tray (in hindsight, I would have made them much tinier, to decrease the cooking time and increase the crunchy exterior/chewy interior)
Bake at 200 2.5-3 hours.

Edible Bouquets

Ms. O loves creating bouquets. Instead of using flowers, we collected herbs and lavender for edible mixes.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Vegan Bites: Caramel Apple Slices

Caramel spread and chocolate sauce were met with much enthusiasm, the latter getting more attention!

Acorn & Oak

Form Drawing

We've been incorporating a lot of Form Drawing into our storytelling. 
It's a fantastic language tool, exercising early writing practice while introducing symbolism.

“Oh I’ll never be big,” the acorn said
As it gazed on high to the oak tree tall,
“I’m little and round as a miller’s thumb,
I’ll never be big, I’ll always be small.”
The oak tree smiled a knowing smile,
“My trunk is thick, and my roots are deep,
My branches and twigs spread high and wide,
For birds to nest in, and bugs to sleep.
But I was an acorn too on a time,
- ‘Oh I’ll never be big, I’ll never be strong,’-
That’s what I thought many years ago...
 And, dear little acorn, you see I was wrong!”

Paul King

Apple Star Story-telling

A lovely Waldorf story we do every year, but still results in surprised smiles!
Have an apple and knife on hand for the beautiful ending (slice horizontally in half to see the star within).

The Story of How the Apples Got Stars Within
by Madge Bigham

There was once a tiny seed sleeping in its blanket of earth all winter long until one early spring morning when Father Sun began to shine. The little seed awoke and began to stretch and yawn and stretch until its legs pushed deeper into the earth and its arms finally stretched up above the earth. Then, with one last stretch, the little seed poked its head up and looked around at the wide, wide world.
After all those long winter months in its brown earth bed, the little sprout thought it had never seen anything so beautiful as grass and flowers, and it gazed in wide-eyed wonder at the world. All day the little sprout listened to the music of the birds and the breezes and was full of wonder. She watched the clouds sail by in the blue sky and then saw the sky turn golden as Father Sun sank into his bed. And then, as everything grew dark again, the little sprout saw a wonderful sight: up in the sky diamond-stars were twinkling! She wished so much to touch one that she stretched and stretched to reach the sky. But she couldn’t touch the sparkling stars. And finally she began to cry.

Suddenly, there appeared a fairy, wearing a crown a just those sparkling stars. “Why do you weep?” asked the fairy. “Because I so want such a star for my very own,” answered the little sprout. “Ah, some day your wish shall be granted,” said the fairy. “But first you have much work to do. You must grow strong and tall and full of love.” And then the fairy vanished.
The little sprout worked hard to grow tall and strong and after some time she became a young sapling. King Storm came with his winds and rains and beat her down almost to the earth. But each time she struggled to stand tall again, and grew stronger and stronger. And after some time she was no longer afraid of him for she knew he helped her to grow.
After many visits from King Storm, one morning the little tree awoke to find her branches covered with pink blossoms. “Oh, how lovely!” she cried, and she took great care of them, day after day, until one day tiny seed babies appeared. Now the little tree was becoming a mother, and she was so busy caring for her tiny apple-children that she forgot all about her wish to the fairy. Summer came, and her children grew golden and green, and the little fairies came and kissed each little apple until it blushed bright red.
The little apple tree was so proud of her children — she felt she could not be happier. Then suddenly the fairy with the crown of stars appeared beside her. “I have come to grant your wish,” she said, “to bring you a star from heaven for your very own.” “Oh,” said the little apple tree, “I no longer need a star. I am quite happy with my apple children.” “Well then,” said the fairy, “I shall give my basket of stars to your apple children. But I will hide them deep inside where only the Earth-Children can find them.”
And so she did. And that’s where you will find a star waiting for you: inside each apple, guarding the little seed babies for you to plant in the earth again.

Apple Tree Balance

Tape tree + real apples = balancing activity.
Clever and enjoyed by all!

We combined this activity with "Winifred Witch & Her Kitty" from 'Tell Me a Story'.
With a little rhyme from the tale, Ms. O had the opportunity to practice some Copy Work, which she loves!

"Apple tree, apple tree, bear some apples for me.
Hats full, laps full, caps full, sacks full!"

Monday, October 24, 2016

Sensory Hula

MR. A was not excluded from our circle studies!
He received a Sensory Hula Hoop his siblings and I constructed from things around the house; playsilks, carrier teething pad, baby slippers, bell bracelets. bibs...

Ideally baby can be positioned in the center as they rotate their body from object to object, but he wanted nothing to do with this. He is interested in joining our lessons!

Math Monday: Cardboard Portraits

When math can be combined with art (and more often than not, that is totally possible) it's a win-win!
We used some cardboard shapes to sneak in little math lessons for Math Monday, courtesy of this inspiration from Artful Parent,

Pencil Strung to Chopstick
First I introduced this tool and declared that it could help us draw a balanced circle.
Basically a big protractor.
We used extra large cardboard to test out the possibility.
I inquired how we could trace a smaller circle? Wrapping the string around the chopstick a few more times.
Big circle= big sister.
Little circle= little sister.

We used remaining cardboard to cut a handful of shapes for features.
Before bringing out the hot glue, we painted each facial feature separately.
Ms. O was not fully satisfied with simple shapes, so she cut out more details, including eyelashes!

How Much Does a Portrait tell us?
Great activity to segue into an Art Study lesson.

Zero. We took a look at the "number" zero with the help of this clever book by  Betsy Franco.

Then did some (easy) old-school math on the blackboard.

Which Witch Scavenger Hunt

We took advantage of our warty Jack-be-Littles to create this mornings Word Scavenger Hunt.
I wrote the letters in plain view and the numbers to show order, on the bottom.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Daily Doodle: The Boy & The Apple

'Artful Parent' has written about offering children to draw while listening to a story.
As I was introducing 'The Boy & The Apple' from 'Tell Me a Story', I asked Ms. O if she would be interested in drawing. She was out of the room to grab some pencil crayons and paper scraps before I could finish my question.

By the time I reached the end of the short story, she presented an illustration of the two main characters {a boy and his grandfather}and the setting of the first scene {sitting by the fire, including the hearth rug}, even the time period that she assumed the story took place {hence the top hats!}

The different expressions on their faces, the way the boy is holding the rim of his hat, the double line of flames and what I interpreted as the dried cracks in burnt wood are all examples of how she pictures the scene in her minds eye.

Nature Prints

Last year I stocked up on some supplies and Nature Paper was on the list

It does continue to fade when hung in a sunny room, so Ms. O & C were scrambling for shady places to display their work!


Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Leaf Impressions with Air Dry Clay

Vegan Bites: Apple Roll-Ups

Same as the plum version; tons of oven time for a few minutes of very happy tastebuds.
Make sauce. 
Spread it on parchment or silicon sheet. 
Bake at 200 until dry. 
Slice and roll.

Fall Photography


Invitation to Explore: Fall Tray

'Invitations to Explore' are one of the simplest ways to prepare a science lesson.
Our specimen are kid-collected, so all I did was display them on a tray and add two jewelers loupe's for close examination.

 Fall Tray

This miniature mushroom was spotted in a Forest Walk from the weekend.
I fell in love so brought it home to make a sanctuary here.

 Forest Furniture

Ms. C plopped herself on Forest Furniture Daddy chopped and hauled from the bush.

There, she continued threatening to chop down my miniature mushroom.

Since we've been looking at leaf veins, we introduced some stamp pads and paper, so we could further examine various leaves.

Then O went on to create polystyrene prints with a pencil.

Vegan Bites: Potato Leek Soup

Potato Leek Soup
~3 leeks, sliced
~5 potatoes. cubed
~2t coconut oil
~5 cloves garlic, minced
~sprigs fresh thyme & rosemary
~salt & pepper to taste
~1/2 t coriander
~5c veg broth
Saute leeks and garlic in oil. Add remaining ingredients and saute until fragrant.
Pour in broth. Simmer until veg is tender (15-20 mins.)

Vegan Bites: Pretty Pink Applesauce

It's that time of year again: harvest season.
We harvested all the apples from grandpa's farm and turned it into pretty pink applesauce!