Saturday, July 23, 2011

Life in the swamp...

That is what we learned about last week.  We even grew our own alligator!  We learned about the alligators, pig frogs, wood ducks, crawfish and flamingo's - along with our regular day-to-day work.  All in all it was a great week.  Wanna see how we grew an alligator?

I bought a Grow and Alligator toy at the dollar store for $1.
I gathered all of the supplies (bowl and water) and then we measured him and felt of him.  We charted our data and then placed him in the bowl and covered it with water.

Day 1 Data: 
Measures - 8"
Looks/Feels - S: hard but the bottom is soft.
N: Hard and can bend

Then we put him on the shelf and waited 24 hours.

Day 2 Data:
Measures - 7"
Feels/Looks - S: Soft and mushy and bendy
N: Sends, soft and stomps (hey, he's just 3 it may stomp to him!)

We placed him back on the shelf and waited another 24 hours.

Day 3 Data:
Measures - 8 3/4"
Feels/Looks - S: Hard and bumpy on top, mushy on bottom "got fat"
N: tail is spongy, feet are bendy

We then placed him on the shelf and waited 48 hours.  Thursday was not a great day and we didn't get around to our Science that day.  What can ya do but move forward?

Notice the habitat?  He grew so much the couple of days prior I had to find a larger bowl to put him in!
Day 5 data:
Measures - 10 1/2"
Feels/Looks - S: Soft, bendy, mushy, soft on bottom
N: heavy, bendy and hard

The over all consensus is that the alligator GREW a LOT and was mush and soft!  It was fun to do this experiment with the kids and hear them come up with words to describe the alligator.  They really enjoyed talking to it as we measured it and they like pouring the water over it each day.  This will be revisited with other animals as needed because it was fun, cheap and it was educational.

On another note, I have found some great teaching units that are perfect for the kids to work on each week along with our other day-to-day work.  We had planned to do rain/rainbows next week until I saw the unit for Icecream.  I quickly downloaded the unit, printed it and got it all put together for a week full of icecream fun!  You can find all the units HERE from 2 Teaching Mommies.  I see some homemade icecream in our future! YUM!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


If you are like us, you have seen a lot more rain this year than in the previous few.  We have had showers and we have had storms.  I thought it was appropriate to do a theme based on rain and rainbows for one week.  Here is what N will be using... 2 Teaching Mommies: Rain.  S will continue her regular curriculum with lots and lots of fun rain and rainbow activities thrown in there!  I cannot wait to get everything together and ready for next week!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


I have wanted to do the workbox system for some time but I did not want to shell out the money to get the fancy ones I see out there.  The other day I was at the Dollar Tree and ran across some great little shelves that stack up on top of each other.  They had 4 colors: pink, purple, blue and green.  Each one was $1!  I bought one of each and brought them home.  I stacked them up and was sooo excited that my papers fit in them.  I went out and bought another set and made one set blue and green and one set pink and purple and now each child her his/her own workbox set.  I plan to go get a few more (if they have some left) to add to them.  I love being able to just go to the box and pulling out what I want them to work on at that time.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Transparent/Rubber Egg

Last week was our first full week of school for the year.  I decided it would be fun to start the year off with a new and interesting science project.  I found just what I was looking for at Super Teacher Worksheets, the Transparent Egg.  It was really a fun experiment.  First, I gathered the materials needed.
1 egg, vinegar, clear bowl
Then I had each child hold the egg and answer some questions for me about the egg.
1.  What shape is the egg: oval
2. What color is the egg: brown
3. How does it feel: round -S
like a ball-N
4. What do you think is going to happen to the egg when we put it in the vinegar?: It will turn white.
5. Tell me about vinegar.: It stinks!!!

So I had N place the egg in the bowl and then S covered it with vinegar...

You will notice that the egg will float a bit, I guess that is normal.  Ours stopped floating day 2.  Pay no mind to the discoloration on the egg.  It was -eh, hmmm- dirty! :)

We left the egg on the shelf for 24 hours and came back to observe and rinse off the vinegar.  Then we recovered the egg in the vinegar just as directed...

The egg was pretty funky looking at this point.  I could feel that the shell was disolving.  NEAT!!!

We left the egg in the vinegar on the shelf for 24 more hours and came back to find it like this...

I then rinsed the debris from the egg and LOOK!  you can squeeze it!

And it bounces back!

And when you hold it up to a flash light you can see the yolk floating in there...

You can even bounce the egg on the table.  I have a short video of that I will post below...

If you try out this EGGsperiment I would love to hear about it.  

Friday, July 15, 2011

The Eagles Nest (AKA the classroom)

Here is The Eagles Nest!  I am so excited to be getting things in order in there.  It is a pleasure to have a room that the kids and I can sit in and get our school work done.  We have officially started school work just this week and the week has been great!  I will have a post on our first science project (transparent egg) soon!

Our work and computer area.  This works out well for us.
N playing with the blocks and asked me to take his pic! :)  I was glad to do so!

Our shelves with our most used stuff and our weather and days of the week center.  I plan to make a weather graph for us to record the weather for the year!
The other book shelf with a few of the kids favorite books on the bottom and some storage bins with workbooks in them.
Calendar area.
S hard at work at their table.
The reading area.  The basket is full of library books.
Close up of the other shelf and our time out chairs.
And last but not least, the eagle!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Great Big Break!

We have taken a great big break from school work.  Not because we wanted a break but because we were putting together a classroom!!!  I am so excited to have a room designated just to schooling the kids.  We have a large table for S's book work and a computer.  We have a smaller table with 2 chairs that is perfect for N to do his puzzles or for the kids to sit and do their art projects.  We have 2 book cases and well the hubs has his fly tying equipment in there so he can be in there while we are in there.  It has turned into a favorite room.  I find the kids in there just playing, looking at books, putting together puzzles and enjoying their own space for learning.  The hubs goes in there and just sits!  He says it is peaceful in there and he likes to just have some peace now and then (Oh, don't we all!).  I will have to get some pics of the room posted soon.