Thursday, September 13, 2012

Cycle 1 Week 4 Art

We have a tutor in our community who is just so gifted with her art teaching that it amazes me.  Talking with her at lunch today, she shared that her kids incorporated two variants of abstract art that I have never even heard of, which is especially impressive because she's got our very youngest abecedarians.

Art is a struggle for me.  I don't really like art (gasp!) and have a hard time appreciating most non-classical pieces.  In college, I had to take a fine art class and I took 3D art since I like crafts, so I thought working with materials would make the class more bearable.

The only A I received in that class was for an assignment where we had to make a tower for our imagination to live in out of balsa wood sticks and string (and no, I'm not making that assignment up).  The night before our projects were due, mine was knocked out of my cubbie and shattered on the floor.  Figuring there was nothing I could do to impress the teacher anyway, I just turned the assignment in broken.  When I presented it, I said that it represented my complete and utter lack of imagination, and the professor ate it up.  True story.

So, teaching art is not my favorite part of tutoring.  This week, though, we actually had a great success in class with marble painting.  The process is super easy, and it is perfect if you have students who struggle with not having enough time to complete their projects and become frustrated.

Step 1: Find an old cookie sheet.  Set a piece of paper on top
Step 2: Roll marbles in paint.  I recommend using red, yellow, and blue, since they mix happily with each other.
Step 3: Allow the children to roll the marbles by shaking the cookie sheet.  When the paint is gone, they're done!

This process took about 20 seconds per child, and the others in class played a duck-duck-goose review game while they waited their turn.  I felt like it went really well.

I mounted the pieces on larger construction paper, here's an example:

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Cycle 1 Week 4 Science- Plant Cell

Tell you some parts of a plant cell?

I could....but I'd rather nom on some parts of a plant cell :) Hot on the heels of our Animal Cell Brownie  we bring you plant cell veggie bread.

Veggie bread is the brainchild of a friend of mine, who even brought me some at 11pm one night when I was putting together CC materials for our community.  Love her!  We went to her house so our kids could work together making their cells.

You'll need 1 8-ounce cream cheese, softened, 1/2 a packet of Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix, and a can of refrigerator crescent rolls, which they even sell without perforations in a flat sheet.

Step one: Unroll the crescent dough and lay it flat on a cookie sheet.  Bake until golden and delicious according to the package directions.

Step two: using a hand mixer (or muscles, whatever), combine the ranch dressing mix and cream cheese until well-combined and spreadable.

Also, you'll need veggies.  We used cucumber for chloroplasts, carrot peelings for golgi bodies, broccoli for mitochondria, the ranch cream cheese for cytoplasm, the crescent bread for cell membrane, the baking sheet for cell wall, a pile of chopped cauliflower for vacuoles and a tomato slice for the nucleus.
We had 4 children and let them each take turns putting the organelles and telling us what each one does.  This was great review for last week, too!
We recommend making 2 of like this for the kiddos and one with finer chopped veggies for the grown ups to enjoy :) Happy cell making!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

CC Week 3 Science- Tasty Tasty Cells

I think that it's a generally accepted fact that if you can craft something out of food, your children will remember it.

Or, maybe that generally accepted fact is that calories don't count if they are educational.

Something like that.  One of those must be true.

Science week 3 is tell me some parts of an animal cell.  Armed with my debit card, and the need to fill up my tank of gas, and the desire to burn an afternoon, I picked up several kinds of candy, and when we got home, I had my oldest make brownies as a reading comprehension exercise.  (That means he reads and follows the directions and I sit and try to keep my mouth shut unless he's read a fraction incorrectly and is about to put "1 or 2 cups of oil" instead of 1/2 cup of oil).

 A cake would work equally as well.  You'll need a cell base (cake or brownies, we used a round pan), frosting (because cytoplasm tastes better as sugar), and then various things to use as organelles.
 Optional, but I labeled a paper plate and put stars on the ones we actually had in the memory work.  I may have over-bought treats.  We used a cookie for the nucleus, honey cashews for the mitochondria, peanut butter M&Ms for the vacuoles, gummy worms for golgi bodies, and skittles for the lysomes and centrisomes.  I used cake sprinkles for ribosomes.
 Spreading is an important pre-writing skill. (I can't prove that)
The finished cell.  It was delicious! Everyone asked for a piece based on the type of organelles they wanted to get, and they told daddy about the various parts and functions before we dug in.

Classical Conversations Week 4 Idea Swap

From another of our fantastic CC Moms!

History: 7 Wonders of the Ancient World 

-Map showing 7 wonders-

-Videos and information-

-Additional videos and information-

-Make black-and-white copy of map in Foundations Guide on page 223.  Then have students outline and color the areas that we are studying.

-Time line of the Ancient Empire- (more for parent- older students may like this)

Math: Skip Counting 7 and 8
-7 & 8s:  Click on “Skip Counter” - you will need both PDF files-

Week 4 English: More Prepositions 

Neat activity-

Pull out your Easter Eggs and allow children to search for them.  When they find one, they should write a sentence using a preposition to describe where they found the egg. 

Week 4 Latin: Noun Endings, 1st Declension 

I am going to put these all on individual index cards (half them), mix them up, then have the kids put them in order.  They will start to form the chart in their heads (hopefully). 

-Plant cell diagram and definitions-

-Marble Action Painting by abstract expressionist. 
Scroll down the page to Lesson Plan Activity- messy but fun!  

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The 5 Kingdoms/Classification

Classical Conversations Cycle 1 Science Week 1 and Week 2 cover the classification of living things and the five kingdoms.  

Riley has an assignment to do a poster on Orangutans this week (which is great because it lines up with a cub scout achievement!), but in addition to that, here's what we did:

 These were our in-class projects.  We divided a paper into 5 sections, copied the words down from the board to label each of the 5 Kingdoms, and then pasted pictures from the computer and magazines to show examples.  Monerans are readily available in medicine ads- especially Neosporin :)
 Then we enjoyed our first field trip of the year with our CC group! We planned a trip to the National Zoo.  My plan had been to bring a 5 Kingdoms scavenger hunt, but I left the papers at home.  Sigh.
 When you look at the various writings on each animal, you can point out the binomial nomenclature, which gives a latin name with the genus and the species.  Similar families are grouped together, and houses are usually done by class or order, depending on the size of the zoo! God made all creatures, and using the similarities, we can group and order them.  We see evidence of God's order in the universe, even at the zoo!
I love this guy! He was cheesing for the camera and looked almost happy to see us! (I'm sure if I'd stuck my hand in his terrarium, he'd have been happy to eat it, though!) 
Here's our little crew after making it all the way to the Flamingos (our friend KM has to do her report this week on Flamingos).  It was warm, and we had a little mini-emergency when a fellow CC mom had 2 of her kids go rogue and enjoy the reptile house alone ;) but we found them, and all was well.  This was a great field trip to fill in some real-life with our memory work pegs! It's always amazing to me how diverse life is! I especially love the poison arrow frogs, they look too tiny and intricate to be real, but they are!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Classical Conversations Cycle 1 Week 3 Idea Swap

This week came from our community's director! She's very fun and makes our community such a joy.  She's always happy and compassionate, which I would not be if I had so many complaints and personalities to deal with! We're very blessed to have her!

Week 3 History Sentence: Greek and Roman Gods
Concentration / matching game to learn the Greek / Roman gods and goddesses
TO Make: Use the W3 Greek / Roman gods flashcards from Phillip Martin off Classical Conversations Community History cycle 1 week 3. I used the pictures from this set to make the concentration game. Make one copy of these flash cards.
Copy this file onto card stock if available. Cut 12 equal shaped pieces of construction paper. Mine were approx 3x3 inches. Cut the copies of the pictures below to fit. Place one picture on each piece of construction paper. The construction paper will be the back. All cards should be the same color. Laminate or cover with contact paper and cut out into 12 cards.
Laminate page 3 – the definitions of the gods and goddesses. Laminate and cut out into 6 headings.
Laminate or cover with contact paper the flash cards from the Phillip Martin file.
How to use:
Use Philip Martin’s flash cards to learn the definitions and the Greek and Roman names for the gods and goddesses.
Use the cards in this file to play concentration. Then once all the matches are made, place each match under / next to the definition title for that god or goddess. 
(Note: If you're not part of the CC Connected community, you could make your own flashcards using pictures of the Roman/Greek gods and goddesses from google images)

Week 3 Geography: Hebrew Empire
Jordan River Dead Sea Phoenicia
Sea of Galilee
Many of these places correspond with Bible Stories. It may be fun for your child to hear some of them at bedtime and connect their geography for the week with the life and times of Jesus.

Week 3 Math: Skip Counting 5’s and 6’s
In addition to the songs on your CC Resource DVD or Audio CD, sometimes it can help children who are visual to have something to look at and understand the concept a little more. 5’s are fairly easy, nickels, fingers, toes, or even $5 bills will work. For the 6’s there is an attached sheet.
Science: Some parts of an animal cell are the nucleus, cytoplasm, vacuole, mitochondria, cell membrane, and golgi bodies. 
Use the image with labels to introduce the material.  Allow children to complete the diagram with no labels.  Younger children may prefer to cut and paste, older children can write.  You may consider putting the unlabeled version in a plastic sleeve so children may practice without having to print several copies
Other resources:

Bill Nye the Science Guy Episode 17 “Cells”
Magic Tree House #16 “Hour of the Olympics”
Magic Tree House Fact Checker #10 Ancient Greece
Usborne Greek Myths for Children
How the Greeks Won the War: Step into Reading
The Illustrated Book of Myths: Tales and Legends of the World, Philip