Friday, August 31, 2012

An awesome world = our classroom! Nature Days with our Homeschool Friends: LOVE

One of our co-op moms led an awesome two-day nature adventure for our homeschool group this summer. We started with a nature show and tell, exploring items brought in by students, everything from turtle skeletons to wood duck nests. Followed by a hike to explore various plants, trees and foliage, and some rules of thumb to identifying what you find in nature- and what is safe to eat or not. The kids took notes in nature journals and also colored pictures of how nature made them feel. It was great!
The subsequent day was even better. We headed to Jackson's Landing, a shallow portion of the large river that runs through our town. The kids got to wade in and find all sorts of life- from beetles and water spiders to crayfish and minnows- even down to microscopic creatures- and categorize what they scooped up and discovered. It was a fantastic day of educational fun! What an awesome world we live in, and it's all our classroom for the taking!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Homeschool Show and Tell Showcase

As home learners, it's important we foster opportunities for our kids to experience show and tell moments, to present projects they've worked on, demonstrate pride in their work, share the excitement of what they have learned with their peers, etc.
Here are some highlights to our most recent showcase, the kids shared their favorite projects from the year with their friends, and got to see the cool stuff built by their buddies. One awesome family displayed an amazing medieval castle they built with their dad--it was the size of an entire room!! It had a draw-bridge that worked, with a courtyard, several buildings and towers, along with a moat and a board report all about knights and castles. Totally great!! Home education rules!

Lighthouse Learning

At the start of the summer, our family enjoyed a fantastic vacation to the upper peninsula, and among other units of study, we touched on the beauty and history of the beloved Lighthouse. The Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum, on Lake Superior, has a truly amazing restored lighthouse museum, and because we were the only ones there, and my children were sincerely eager to learn, the staff woman took the time to go above and beyond, giving us a small guided tour about the rooms and what the items were used for and what life was like for a lighthouse keeper's family. Adventures through history!

We were also, coincidentally, at home, just completing #8 in our Boxcar Children series, "The Lighthouse Mystery." Great timing!

Here are some excellent links and resources for building your own unit studies on Lighthouses.,1,5,62,63

Lighthouse Crafts for kids

Lighthouses! from The Homeschool Mom