Friday, August 22, 2014

Can You Hear It? {Art Friday}

This particular book has been on my wish list for a while and I was super excited to add it to our collection this year. It's a book of various artists and a cd with music to go along with it. Each page has questions about the music to inspire little ones. The kids LOVE it. I intended to do a page a week but we went through the whole book the first day and it has a coveted place on our bookshelf. 

I pulled out our instrument three part cards (from Peter and the Wolf) and did a three part lesson on a few of the instruments while we listened to some of the music. 

There are so many extensions. Listen to the music and count the beats. Listen to more from the composer or search for more art work from the artist. You could easily do a lesson on Bees after listening to the flight of the bumblebee. We are excited to get to know these artists and their works in the coming months! 

Have fun appreciating art this week! 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Astronomy, Understanding the Universe {Science}

I introduced astronomy this week to our little guys. It's a fun album and one that we go back to quite a bit with the oldest.  We started with a discussion of the universe and I showed a picture. It's a good time to emphasize that "the universe contains everything starting with you" and how BIG the universe is. Pass around the picture (or look together). 

A fun (and classic) activity is to make a "universe jar." You need: jar, water, small pitcher, glitter, oil, dropper, and liquid watercolor (or food coloring). 

-put all the materials on a tray
-explain that you are making a model of the universe
-pour a little bit of water into the jar
-take a dropper of oil and add a few drops to the jar
-add a few spoonfuls of glitter
-add a drop of coloring if desired
-screw the lid on and admire
-invite the kids to make one for themselves! 

Other resources:

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Ecology {Introduction and Scope}

I started introducing little bits of Ecology to Indie this week. It's one of those subjects where learning seems to occur naturally but it's also nice to work on some nomenclature specific to this science. 

Ecology is the study of how living things interact with each other and the world around them. It's easy to talk about taking care of the earth AND scare the crap out of our kids. We do NOT want to do that! Montessori was very clear that our intent should not be to scare but to equip and empower. 

This week we talked a lot about a clean environment and a dirty environment. Our ongoing project is taking pictures!  

 Our toddler specific activity: 

We reused egg shells by spooning potting soil. The general idea is to water them and place a few seeds in for a beautiful new plant.  All our eggs ended up involved in a sensory experience and were pulverized.... so... fair warning :) 

For the next few weeks or so we will touch on these subjects:
The natural world without any impact from humans
Dirty vs Clean environments
Upcycling/Reusing Materials
Contour Farming

Ecology Manual from KHT Montessori (and corresponding cards)
ETC Montessori Ecology Scope and Sequence (for elementary, free and great!) 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Stamp Game Addition and Subtraction {Math}

We've been using our homemade golden beads for most of our large number work lately but I decided this week would be a good one to reintroduce the stamp game. This is one of my favorite materials. It's generally introduced after the golden beads. It's still a hands on way to work with large numbers but the "1000" "100" and "10" tiles have their corresponding numbers written on them as opposed to be 100 separate units. We purchased our from amazon and printed some stamp game paper

How to Use:

1. Introduction: Take out your golden bead materials and the stamp game materials. For each category, point to the unit and the corresponding stamp to show that they represent the same thing.  Mix them up and do a three period lesson to reinforce the concept. 

2. Addition: Write a simple addition problem on the stamp game paper. Make sure no regrouping is involved initially. Demonstrate how to pull down the stamps for each unit. Use the skittles if necessary to hold places. Place a ruler underneath the units for the first number. Place the second units underneath. Remove the ruler and push up the stamps so that they are all combined. Count up all the units and right in the appropriate place on the paper. Encourage the student to make up their own problems (or write a few on the paper for them). 

3. Regrouping: same as above but demonstrate how 10 "10 units" is the same as a "100" unit. Show how to replace 10 of those units with one of the red 100 units and continue adding. 

4. Three Addends Add three large numbers together. 

5. Check work. Show how you can take away an addend to see if you have the initial number. 

6. Subtraction: Same as addition but instead of adding numbers to the bottom demonstrate how to take them away and than count how many are left. If regrouping is necessary, replace the unit needed. 

You can use this material for multiplication and division as well! When we get there I will post it! This corresponds well with Singapore student work book 2A Exercise 12-24. 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Cutting Strips {Wordless Wednesday}

Wednesdays are the days that I share an activity (or experience) with just pictures. Thanks for stopping by!