Friday, September 30, 2011

Learning in the Woods

Our second day of school in the woods was wonderful. We spent our morning exploring the sense of touch.
Miss Jen brought out such beautiful samples of nature that we felt with our hands. We asked each child to use describing words and they came up with 'bumpy', 'smooth', 'prickly', 'pointy' and 'soft'.
Then we shared our Mystery Box which was filled with items found in nature. The children each took turns putting their hands in the box and guessing what they felt.
When we went for our hike, we tried to find the same items that we felt in our Mystery Box.
It was very damp from a lot of rain and the bugs were pretty relentless. The children hardly complain though - its quite amazing.
We also looked for beautiful leaves for our project later in the day...
We found sweet worms wiggling under the rocks... Lilah was not one bit afraid and picked them up gently right away. We talked about how worms cannot see or hear but use their sense of touch to know where they are going.
When we returned from our hike to the picnic tables, Miss Jen led our craft activity of making homemade Leaf Presses.
The children used beeswax crayons and leaf stamps to decorate their press.
Then they layered paper and the beautiful leaves they found on their walk on top of each other.
We sealed each press closed with rubber bands and our leaves will sit in our presses until we are ready to use them for craft projects in a few weeks.
This day, I brought along a few wooden toys for the children to play with on our picnic blanket.
We also read beautiful stories - one of them was especially sweet and included different textures for the children to feel as they explored.
We look forward to seeing the children again next week.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Dragon Bread for Michaelmas

Today we celebrated Michaelmas by baking Dragon Bread :) - the girls all worked together.
As we made our bread each girl took a turn helping...
We measured and poured
And got messy :)
I shared a story of a Dragon who came and stormed a town and ruined the fields and crops..
And how the townspeople were so sad and had no hope

But St. Michael came and told them to rebuild and plant their seeds again...
And he defeated the dragon and sent him away...
We then kneaded our bread and let it rise...
And after an hour - we took it out and pounded it...
And shaped it into a dragon (lol - does it LOOK like a dragon to you?)... and waited for it to rise again and baked it.
Merry Michaelmas!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Autumn Crafting

To celebrate the coming of Autumn, the girls and I spent some time crafting.
I needlefelted a simple leaf which ended up decorating our favorite nature walk basket...
Maia wanted to make a leaf mask :) - she didn't want any help and got busy right away.
Silly pickle!
Keira wanted to make leaves out of felt and craft little leaf babies to go in them...
She traced and cut the leaves...
And began sewing together a little body for her baby...
I love spending time together at our dining room table being creative. And Autumn is my favorite season ever.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Mix a Pancake

Mix a pancake,Stir a pancake,
Pop it in the pan;
Fry the pancake,
Toss the pancake,
Catch it if you can.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Closely Knit

This sweet little chick was knit up by my daughter Keira for a creative project she had to bring in for school. The pattern is just a simple square folded over and sewed up just right from the book Toymaking with Children.
Did you know that you can knit anywhere? Up on a playset...
At the dinner table...
In bed with a special doll...
Maia is also a little knitter. She knows how to knit the regular way but really loves her knitting tower that she got for Christmas.
Simple finger knitting with a tool to make the coolest, thick, warm chain...
So much fun.
What are you working on?

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Happy Birthday, Loves

Yesterday we celebrated THREE of my favorite people's birthdays with family and friends :)
Maia's birthday is at the end of July but we've had to cancel it twice - poor thing! The first time, Keira came down with a case of the chicken pox - the second time hurricane Irene blew through - I guess the third time was a charm... she was able to celebrate right around the same time as Brianna and Brian's birthday.
Brianna turned 5 this year - on the same day as her daddy. Its so amazing that they were born on the same day.
Maia was so happy to finally celebrate her special day.
We had our traditional pinata outside for the kids and lots of good food and drinks. The weather was cool just the way I like it :)
My dad and I.
Our clan. The girls are getting so big.
We had a great celebration and are going out to dinner tonight to once again celebrate Brian and Brianna as a family.
Hope you had a great weekend too.