Thursday, February 24, 2011

Dear Dad ...

Dear Dad,

Things have been crazy since we've been back.  We are homeschooling, but blogging has gotten away from me.  Look for things to resume on Tuesday. 

Sincerely,
Your daughter :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Good Weather + Good Company = A Great Day!

Today, we took full advantage of this fantastic weather and made the short trip to Callaway Gardens to meet our buddies, Paisley and Olivia.  We had a great time and soaked up some good ol' Vitamin D!  Some photos:

Feeding the geese ...
 Holding hands with Paisley ... so sweet!  :)
Buddies.  :)
 Hammin' it up for the camera ...
 Bananas!
 In the swing of things ...
 Pushing Pais ...
 This was her favorite spot!

It was a great day, and totally worth the catch-up we'll be doing tomorrow!  Our Triops still haven't hatched, but should be hatched by the morning.  That should be interesting!  Check back with us!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Triops and Trouble

Well, the last twenty-four hours have been fun.  For starters, last night, the water in our Triops 'aquarium' could never get warm enough to add our eggs.  (The paperwork strictly stated that if our water was too cold, our eggs would never hatch.)  I tried to heat it with every lamp I own, but nothing put out enough heat because it was either too tall or the wattage of the bulb wasn't high enough.  Mags, of course, reminded me repeatedly that we needed to add the Triops eggs, so we finally came to an understanding that we would find and purchase a proper lamp (AKA: a small, high-heat, desk lamp with a bendable arm) today.  Well, after a trip to KMart and $12.99 (plus tax) later, we finally were able to get a good heat source to keep our water at a constant 73+ degrees.  And, to top it off, we had a three-year-old 'moment' at the library's storytime today, to which I picked up Mags, sideways, hollering and kicking all the way out the door.  (Sorry, Ms. Kim!)  Anyway, we are alive and happy again, Triops eggs incubating.  Here are some photos:

My final, successful attempt at getting our Triops water warm enough ... a little bit of foil + a low, hot heat = 73+ degrees of warm bath for Triops eggs!
 They're quite hard to see, but in front of the water conditioner (the teabag-looking thing), you can see a clump of small, tan dots.  These are our Triops eggs.
 Maggie, with a bird match-up game.
 We went on a walk around the neighborhood, looking and listening for birds, and we hit the jackpot at our neighbor's feeders!
 After our walk, watching The Weather Channel, and viewing weather.com, Maggie predicted today's weather to be 'Sunny!' 
 We made a snake out of an 'S,' our letter for the week.
Today, we:
Social:
1. We attended Preschool Adventures (or, most of it) at North Columbus Library, where we learned about spiders.  We left before the craft, but we did manage to hear three books, Itsy Bitsy Spider by Keith Chapman, The Itsy Bitsy Spider by Iza Trapani, and The Very Busy Spider by Eric Carle.
Letter 'S':
1. We found the 'S's in our letter magnets and spelled out words that start with 'S.'
2. We made a snake out of an 'S.'
Birds:
1. We read Birds by Kevin Henkes.
2. We read About Birds by Cathryn Sill.
3. We read Birdsongs by Betsy Franco and Steven Jenkins.
4. We watched the All About Birds DVD that we borrowed from the library.
5. We read the 'Hello and Good-Bye' action rhyme in our High Five magazine, March 2011, pages 32-33 (about robins).
6. We went out for a walk and observed the birds.  We observed what they were doing, how they moved, and the sounds that they made.  We pretended we were birds and acted out the different ways we would move if we were a finch or a hummingbird or a penguin.  (She then proudly reminded me that chickens don't fly either, which she remembered from our Farm study!)
7. We played the 'Birds, Birds, Birds' card game in our High Five magazine, March 2011, back cover.
8. We listened to different birds' sounds online.
Weather:
1. We observed the weather outdoors, then watched The Weather Channel together, followed by a peek at Weather.com and determined that it was 'sunny' today.  We then looked at tomorrow's weather to determine how we should dress for our field trip to Callaway Gardens.
2. We watched the following episodes of our Sid the Science Kid: Weather Sid Kid DVD: 'Sid's Rainy Play Date,' 'Special Sunny Dad Day,' 'Sid's Holiday Adventure,' and 'The Wind Did It.'
3. We read the 'What Can We Do?' story in High Five magazine, February 2011, pgs. 12-15 (about weather).
4. We read It is Sunny by Kelly Doudna.
Opposites (review):
1. We completed the two opposites worksheets (pages 22-23) in our Care Bears Thinking Skills workbook.
2. We completed the 'Opposites Attract' worksheet in our Getting Your Preschooler Ready to Read book, page 23.
Numbers:
1. We completed three worksheets that required her to match the correct numerals to each set and match sets with equal amounts of objects.

Tomorrow, we spend the day with our buddy, Paisley, at Callaway Gardens, where we intend to picnic and find more birds to observe!  (The Gardens are free all this month!)  Check us out! 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Dino Dig

Hi, readers!  I hope everyone had a terrific Valentine's Day!  Ours was pretty uneventful after our busy week of vacationing and the break was welcomed.  Today, we finished up what we weren't able to of our Dinosaurs curriculum.  Tomorrow, we will start a curriculum on Weather and Birds.  Here are some of today's photos, followed by the rundown:

Our Triops materials, ready for a home ...
 Adding water to our 'aquarium' ...
 Here, Mags is conditioning and testing the temperature of the water, making the water optimal for our Triops eggs.  (We'll add more pictures later when we add the eggs, but the conditioning process takes 4 hours!)
 Our Dinosaur Fossil Kits ...
 The unearthing begins (Aunt Mary Lee would be so proud) ...
 Is that a bone?
 Yep!  We've got something!  :)
The dinosaur skeleton we unearthed, all put together!  A T-Rex!  :)
 Ready to make some treats!  (I was so proud of this find ... the kit was only $2 at Big Lots!)
The decorating begins ...
 A smiling stegosaurus! 
 Looks ... ummm ... delicious?
 This is a great moment!  She just wrote her name all by herself on the top of her worksheet!  We were both so excited!  (This mom was so proud.)  :)
 Maggie!

Today, we:
Letter 'S':
1. We looked at and discussed big letter 'S' and little letter 's' and words that start with 'S': snack, snake, Sapp, socks, sandals, shoes, star, spaghetti, squash, Steven, spoon, smile, swing, sleep, sloth, stairs, etc.
Dinosaurs:
1. We set up our Triops in their 'home' for observation over the next few weeks.
2. We put together our Rice Krispies Treats Dinosaur Kit.
3. We played with our Dinosaur Fossil Kits, and unearthed dinosaur 'bones,' which we then pieced together to make complete skeletons.  (We then talked about how Aunt Mary Lee does this same thing for her work!)
4. We completed another Mighty! Dinosaurs paint poster.
5. We discussed some animals that we see today that have similarities with dinosaurs (alligators, turtles, frogs, birds, etc.).
6. We read the 'Look at the Frog!' article in our High Five magazine, March 2011, page 35.
Opposites (review):
1. We watched the Baby Bumblebee: Opposites and More! DVD that we borrowed from Netflix.
2. We completed the Short/Long worksheet that required her to identify the shorter object in each group.
3. We completed the Left/Right worksheet (page 12) in our Care Bears Thinking Skills workbook.
4. We completed the 'Biggest of All' worksheet in our Getting Your Preschooler Ready for Math book, page 80, which required her to compare the sizes of different dinosaurs.
Numbers:
1. We completed page 17 in our Numbers 1-12 workbook, which required her to match each number with the correct group of things.
 
Thanks for checking in with us!  See you again soon!  :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Back to the Grind ...

Tomorrow, we'll resume our homeschooling curriculum after a 'fun'tastic vacation to Disney World, but first, some photos of the homeschooler herself:

Aboard her very first flight on her way to Disney World ...
 Maggie's name in Japanese, thanks to the Japanese hostesses in 'Japan' at Epcot ...
 Coloring a fan in 'Japan' at Epcot ...
 Despite some rain, we still had a great time!
The 'Illuminations' fireworks show at Epcot ...
On Day 3, Maggie wore her 'Minnie' outfit that Ms. Susan made her.  She corrected me when I said she looked like Minnie with, 'No, Minnie Robot!'  Got it.
 Checking out the fauna at Animal Kingdom ...
 She loved the petting zoo ...
 Waiting for the 'It's a Bug's Life' 3D show ...
 Enjoying one of her favorite things at Disney, the popcorn!
 Day 4, ready for Sea World!  (Again, thank you, Susan, for the precious outfits!)
 Her favorite thing at Sea World was feeding the stingrays!
 'I'm a fish!'
 Checking out the seahorses ...
 Day 5, Hollywood Studios!
 Waiting for lunch at the Sci-Fi Dine-in Theater! 
 This was one of our favorite lunches!  So much fun!
 Taking the Backlot Tour at Hollywood Studios ...
 Playing in the 'Honey, I Shrunk the Kids' playground ...
 Day 6 ... Magic Kingdom!
 Waiting for the teacups ride ...
 Checking out the contents of Minnie's fridge ...
 Mickey's garden!
 Maggie loved the robots, of course!
 The Electrical Parade was such a treat!
 Pete's Dragon!
 The greatest finale to our trip ... the fireworks show over Cinderella's Castle!

We had a great time, but homeschooling beckons!  Thanks for checking in on us!