We are a family with three 'wee winkles' exploring the pleasures and perils of educating at home using Scripture, Montessori and a lot of love!

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

The felt mat of the four seasons

I thought it would be a good idea to start the year off talking about times and seasons.
We borrowed a few books from the library and then while listening to a Playschool c.d that featured a song about the seasons I had an idea.
Subsequently I made a felt mat for Lamb with ties so that he can keep it all together.
With a four stage 'puzzle' with all of the pieces cut from felt and some handwritten labels of the seasons.
So we take all of the pieces off and as we are placing them back on we sing the song:
"In the summer time I like to go to the beach, go to the beach, go to the beach.
In the summer time I like to go to the beach and swim in the blue, blue sea.
In the autumn time I like to look at the trees, look at the trees, look at the trees.
In the autumn time I like to look at the trees and see all the leaves fall down.
In the winter time I like to snuggle up tight, snuggle up tight, snuggle up tight.
In the winter time I like to snuggle up tight. Snuggle up tight in bed.
In the spring time I like to sit in the sun, sit in the sun, sit in the sun.
In the spring time I like to sit in the sun and watch all the flowers grow.
All year round we like to sing our song, sing our song, sing our song.
All year round we like to sing our song, doo dee doo dee doo dee doo dee doo"

The song is "In the Summertime" and composed by Peter Combe.
It is on the "Hullabaloo" c.d but I am sure that the same thing could be done with any children's song about the seasons.

Now that I have the mat made I can make any number of activities for Lamb and Cherry related to whatever they are learning about at the time!

Sunday, 20 February 2011

The seven days of creation

I printed and laminated some cards for Lamb so that we could track the seven days of creation chronologically.
It is just a word document with some pictures I gleaned from doing an images search but he was really interested.

I figure it doubles as a number ordering exercise as well!

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Matching animals

I printed off a whole lot of animal pictures mostly for Lamb so that we could classify them but I saw this idea at http://theadventuresofbear.blogspot.com/search/label/17%20months and thought that I should give it a go with Cherry.
We did it in two sections. Firstly I handed her the animal and said "This is a humpback whale" then "Can you find me a picture of a humpback whale" then "Can you put this whale on the picture?"
The last few she knew what I was getting at and put the animal on the picture straight away.

Geometric Insets

Lamb's first time with geometric insets. 
They are just made from corrugated cardboard. They certainly won't last forever but he is usually so careful with things I thought they would last long enough...

Introduction to sums

I simply printed and laminated the numbers, addition and equals symbols, used some little wooden ladybirds that I already had amongst my craft things and cut out two leaves from green felt. I either a)Put the ladybirds on the leaves and get Lamb to find the matching numbers then add them together and find the correct number to complete the sum or b)Put the numbers out and get Lamb to count out the correct number of ladybirds per leaf then add them together.
At the end I get him to read it back to me "Two plus One equals three".

Introducing Montessori at home

A few of the basic day to day things Cherry and Lamb are incorporating at home

A new focus in 2011

Well...here goes...my first post.
About six months ago I was having a conversation with my cousin who was visiting me from the States about our thoughts on home educating our children, the reasons for it and what we hoped to achieve. She mentioned that it sounded as though a lot of our goals were similar to Montessori methods...so I looked it up.
Since then I've read two of Maria Montessori's books and countless blogs of Mummies applying some of these techniques to the home environment.
This year I decided that I would start 'preschooling' our children a little more actively involving these methods. A part of that is to keep a journal of their activities and their progress. The other motivation for me was to connect myself with the online community of women doing much the same thing.
I have already gained so much for my children in reading the blogs of others so hopefully I can do the same for someone else!