Category Archives: exploration day

Rain, Rain… Come and Play

In science this week, we’ve been talking about rain and rainbows. The topic lends to lots and lots of experiments and conversation.

On Wednesday, we focused on what causes rain, evaporation, etc. After reading about and discussing evaporation, we did this quick experiment to demonstrate how it all works:

Boil 2 or 3 cups of water, remove from heat and place a metal cookie sheet (or bread pan filled with ice cubes) on top. Let the kids see how the steam rises and forms drops on the pan. When the drops get big enough and heavy enough, they fall back down… Just like rain!

Tada… A simple and free science experiment. It kept my little monkeys interested for a long time too.

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Exploration Day- Flowers

You may remember that the curriculum we are using suggests taking
one day a week as an “exploration” day. A couple of weeks ago, I
confessed that I can’t stand bugs, but for the good of the kids I
sucked it up and went out bug hunting. As you can tell, I survived!

This week’s exploration was much more manageable for me…
Flowers! As far as I know, flowers don’t hide in your walls, beds,
shoes… Just waiting to crawl on you!

The little monkeys have both been given Fisher Price Kid Tough
Cameras in the last couple of years. (Side note: I highly recommend
these cameras… Real digital cameras that stand up to rough and
tough kid stuff). So… They gathered up the cameras and we walked
around the neighborhood taking pics of the flowers we saw- free,
educational fun!

Other flower activities:
– torn paper collage: use scraps of construction paper to create flower

-dried flowers: put a flower between two sheets of paper then put it
under a heavy book (or two) for a week or so.

Homeschooling is a new venture for me… Homeschooling on a tight
budget is a challenge. I want to give my kids amazing experiences. I
realized yesterday that the kids have a much different idea of
amazing than me… A two mile walk, hunting flowers was an
adventure for them.

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Filed under camera, exploration day, flowers, mfw

Butterfly Food

What do you get when you mix banana, brown sugar and water?

Butterfly Food!!!

Shortly after the last post, the monkey boy got hold of the Bug Hunter book and informed me that there were “more than 30 fun activities” !!

We picked one that I could handle… A butterfly bar. Here’s what you need:

-overripe banana
-mixing bowl and fork
-wooden spoon
-1/2 cup dark brown sugar
-1 cup water
-Paper Plate

1. Peel the banana, slice it and put slices in a bowl. Use the fork to mash the slices into paste.

2. Mix the banana paste, sugar, and water in the saucepan. Heat mixture until it simmers, then leave it cooking until it becomes sticky. Turn off heat and let it cool.

3. Make three holes in the plate with the pencil. Tie a piece of string around the plate through each hole.

4. Tie the plate to a low branch then smear on the paste. Stand back and watch the butterflies arrive.

I used the top of a plastic grape container instead of a paper plate.

Within the first 10 minutes, we had a butterfly come do a fly by (sorry I didn’t get a pic).

**this bug hunting activity comes from “Bug Hunters” by David Burnie**

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Exploration Day- Bugs

Confession: When it comes to bugs, I am about as girly girl as they come!

Part of the My Father’s World First Grade Curriculum is to include an exploration day every week. This week was about bugs…ew! I grew up in the city, but after college I lived in a log cabin in the woods. Before you start imagining how quaint and wonderful it was, you need to know that there was no insulation and several holes where creepy crawlies could get in! When I first moved in, no one had lived there for quite a while so the bugs had taken over… Again, ew! I would wake up at night and find bugs all around me… Double ew! I am pretty sure we discovered new species of bugs while living there. I battled spiders, wasps, hornets, roaches ladybugs… Yes, ladybugs and countless others. I am thankful for the experience of that house, but can you understand why I am a bit squeamish about bugs?!?

I have had to suck it up for the good of my childrens’ education this week. We set out honey covered bread to attract ants. We placed a wooden board in a patch of grass near the house and will check under it in a few days to see what may be lurking beneath… I shutter at the thought of looking under there!

We checked out bug books at the library. The one pictured above is put out by DK and the Smithsonian. It has some excellent ideas for bug hunting… If you’re into that sort of thing. Stay tuned to find out which bug experiments we try and whether or not I survive.

Don’t get me wrong. I believe God to be very creative and think it took a lot of imagination to come up with the things He did… I would just rather appreciate these kind of things from afar.

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Filed under bugs, confession, exploration day