Tuesday, March 19, 2013

I Want to Learn about Vikings

That's one thing about homeschooling I really like is hearing them tell me "I want to learn." We didn't have a trip to the library planned yesterday so I had to make due with what things I could find online.

I found several printables for them to color including a "Viking Princess" for Elisabeth (well, that's what I called it to keep her interested).

I found several boat making activities. My guys still don't handle scissors so well so mommy ends up doing most of the cutting. I printed off some things for them to color while I cut out and put together this Viking Longship Project that I found on the Navan Education Center's website in Ireland. After stapling the cardboard pieces together and adding a mast, I brought out the acrylic paint for the kids to paint. We added the sail and the dragons head and voila!

Jonah was very interested in learning more about how the Vikings discovered America. So at lunch, we watched a documentary called Vikings: Voyage to America about a modern day guy tracing the route of Eric the Red and his son Leif Ericson across the north Atlantic. This is where the geography lesson came in. We have a small globe and a good children's atlas so they can refer to them when we are learning about historical events.

There are lots of Viking related resources out there especially for older kids.  For Kindergarten you kind of have to sift through and find what suits your kid's skills and interests.

NOVA has a quite a bit of information out there as well as this neat interactive where you can see what your name would look like in Runes.

The BBC has a great interactive website on Vikings.

Related articles

Friday, March 15, 2013

Kindermusik Redux

Kindermusik International
Kindermusik International (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Jonah took Kindermusik classes with KinderVillage in Cary, NC on and off from about 18 months to 4 years of age and Elisabeth took a couple of classes when she was two. They have great introductory music classes for the little guys as well as piano exploration and other creative options for kindergarten ages. For older kids there is piano, recorder and guitar lessons.

It has been two years since my kids took a Kindermusik class. This is solely due to the fact that we moved too far away for it to be a feasible option for regular participation. But they do offer "playdates" once a month. So, today, we took a trip into Cary for one of those classes with the most beloved of all music teachers, Mrs. Susan. She taught both of my kids in the past. Ms. Susan has great energy and always keeps a smile on her face even when your kid is totally not going with the flow. I honestly don't know how she does it everyday. Thankfully, God has seen fit to place people with her unquenchable optimism and energy in our midst.

There was a bit of a St. Patrick's Day theme going on today so we danced an Irish Jig and were introduced to a Celtic harp - the kids even got to finger a crescendo on the strings. At the end, they got to toss around a Leprechaun in a parachute - parachute play is always a hit.

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Thursday, March 07, 2013

Green Eggs and Ham

Yesterday Jonah read his second book. Green Eggs and Ham was always
my favorite Dr. Suess book. Jonah seemed to really enjoy the rhyming
and repetition - it makes for a great confidence builder. I thoroughly
enjoyed watching him take the book out of my lap and read page after
page all by himself!

Monday, March 04, 2013

Rapunzel and Elisabeth's First Professional Haircut

Yesterday, Elisabeth and I had "Girl Day" while Jonah and Daddy had (you guessed it) "Boy Day."  I surprised Elisabeth by taking her to see a short production of Rapunzel, Rapunzel A Very Hairy Fairy Tale at the Memorial Auditorium downtown. She really enjoyed it.

She has been asking for a haircut for weeks, so, after lunch at McDonald's (her choice), we went to SnipIts in Brier Creek. The wait was horrendously long, nearly an hour (take a lesson from me and don't go on the weekend!) She was looking forward to it so much and knew today was the day so I stuck it out. 
Finally, it was our turn and we talked to the hairdresser about what we wanted done. Elisabeth has been wanting short hair like some of the girls in her ballet class. In further support of her position, at the end of the performance we just watched, Rapunzel's hair was cut to a short, shiny, blond bob. So any preference I may have had to keeping it long was totally overwhelmed by all of that plus the realization that it has been very difficult to brush and care for lately. Thus, I acquiesced and we went for short with the caveat that it still be long enough to put in a ponytail for ballet.

Before: you can see how thin the ends were
Our stylist was Anan. She was great! During the shampoo she kept asking Elisabeth if she was comfortable and gave her a 5-10 minute scalp massage. I wanted a shampoo and cut after that!

Scalp Massage
She looked so intense the whole time

Anan took her time and really gave Elisabeth an adorable cut.

It is hard to see in the picture but it has quite a bit of curl in the back and looks adorable. I was very pleased with the cut and felt like Anan had us leave on a high note despite the long wait. If you have a little girl who is due for a haircut I highly recommend her.