Sunday, January 12, 2014

Week in Review: Oak Meadow Kindergarten ~ Week 1

See prior post, "Our First Day of Homeschool"

Having read our first Beatrix Potter tale the evening before, sister reviewed what happened in the story by looking at the pictures and highlighting pieces she remembered.

Our next task was to incorporate the letter A into a gate which was featured in the story and contains the long a sound.  Sister whipped this out and was ready to move on, so I suggested she also choose a picture from the story to recreate.  Here's what she came up with:

I'd planned on baking bread today but had yet to make it to the store for the ingredients we were missing, so I had sister look over the recipe with me and make a list of what we needed.

A little extra love never hurt anyone, right?

After circle time, we headed downstairs to get our bread dough prepared.  Sister and brother had fun mixing and rolling the dough, but probably most enjoyed noshing on it.  Sister tried making a few different letters from her name, and she and I both made our own versions of the letter of the week:

True to form, I think I got something mixed up between the ingredients and/or bake time, so the bread cooked quickly and was a bit on the well done side, but it made the perfect accompaniment to our tomato soup at lunch time. 

While the bread was baking, we bundled up for some outside time.  I was admittedly hesitant, with the colder than normal temperatures and looming rain clouds.  But we I braved the conditions and sensing their contentment reminded me of how valued and worthwhile this time is. 

Sister walked and ran in the shape of an A,

and we found sticks to form a letter A.

We also collected fallen items to add to our seasonal table:

which in our case is really a seasonal box:

which in reality is a plastic container I plan to keep on a bookshelf in our upstairs school area.  I don't think our under 2years-old population of one would let us get away with anything that we couldn't keep contained when not in use. 

We also made paper snowflakes- a skill I'd long forgotten- thankfully my mother-in-law who happens to be a former Kindergarten teacher came to the rescue later in the week.  Added to the mix was cotton balls and leftover gems from our "treasure chest" (see Thursday, below).

To round things out, we enjoyed some music making, reciting songs we already know and attempting to learn some new ones from our Wee Sing CD and accompanying song book.

I accepted my first subbing gig at the beginning of the week, so the kids got to have grandparent time while I was away for the morning.  We've been attending a weekly library time aimed at brother's toddler age group, so they headed that way after aforementioned snowflake crafting under expert guidance. 

I asked if they could look for a book or two about seeds and growing things...

....the ex-Kindergarten teaching mother-in-law to the rescue, yet again.

I told sister we'd be planting seeds at the end of the week, so she started saving seeds she found in her fruit, eventually deciding she needed a seed box to contain them (sensible).

The last two days of the week are also supposed to be our math days, so today we spent time arranging our treasure box which is an idea I found on "Arithmetic Village".  I already had the miniature chest, so after $4 spent at the dollar store on gems and satchels, we were set. 

We filled 10 satchels with 10 gems each to help us in counting by 10s to 100, which sister has also been practicing on our wooden abacus ($10 at IKEA- I am all about finding and sharing good deals, if you haven't noticed). 

Since we'd been away all morning, we had another evening time circle which I'd been willing to forgo but sister insisted on. 

Note to self: don't forget to have circle before bed or you could be up for a mid-night session of candle lighting and finger-plays.

For our last circle time of the week, sister proudly recited one of the songs we'd been learning all by herself.  She loved acting out one of our other weekly verses and the closing verse each day through movement.

Since today was another math day, we put together a calendar that we can use to aid in number recognition, sequencing, identifying patterns, etc. 

I purchased a large piece of poster board at the dollar store and had some left over glittery foam pages from another project, so this project came in at under $3.  We didn't have a measuring stick to help create the lines, so we decided that a belt would be long enough to do the trick.  Sister wrote out the name of the month on a piece of paper that we taped on so we can switch it  out month to month.  For the days of the week, we wrote each day in crayon using the matching Waldorf color.  We added each of the days that have passed so far this month, and sister created and attached a heart to her birth-day as a reminder of the special occasion.

Nothing fancy and far from perfect, but it was fun, easy, and inexpensive (kind of our three major requirements around here).

After reading a few of our books about seeds from the library, we gathered up some soil from our sleeping outdoor garden beds to plant both the orange seeds sister had been collecting and the avocado seed that the curriculum suggested for this activity.  However, the proposed activity was not even close to what we actually did, which told mama that she needs to consult said curriculum and not just her chicken scratch notes before diving in next time.  Maybe I should have taken a cue from sister's apparent skepticism as I snapped this pre-planting photo:

At any rate, each of our seed types is in a soil filled plastic cup sitting in our kitchen window sill and we're looking forward to keeping tabs on what comes up (or doesn't) over the coming weeks.

In another twist of coincidence, or fate, sister had long ago decided she wanted to have a dirt cake for her birthday this year.  Our evening hours were spent measuring, mixing, and worming our final project for the week before the following day's celebration.

Life is sweet.


  1. Love your eloquent writing! So exciting to hear about your great efforts little mama!

  2. Why thank you, Maranda! I so appreciate it.