Time to get back in the swing of things. My break to get the hang at being a mom to three kids 2 and under is officially over. Ben is back to work full time, no winter break, “sigh”.
I want to be more dedicated to fun learning with Tristan and to keep ourselves busy with exciting project to show Daddy when he gets home from work. I think it’s important to set goals (not too high) so that I don’t end up just trying to “make it through the day”! Each month I have a theme. I try to match the bible verses, crafts and songs together with this theme.
I got a plastic bin from walmart that I can hang files in and store craft projects of Tristan’s. I also let him pick out a folder to store papers in, he picked a super cute puppy folder.
I like to be prepare ahead of time, that way we can have fun and not be interrupted…unless there is a baby or two crying. I threw everything in his “school” bin so when I have a minute here or there we can sit down and do school. Tristan loves calling our fun times school ha-ha. This is some of what I have on hand:
- Aquadoodle Mat – just water, so no mess. You can draw letters and numbers or just let the kids have fun doodling.
- Abacus – hands on counting makes learning more fun!
- Crayons, Scissors, Construction paper, pipe cleaners, google eyes and other such items for crafts.
- Number Coloring pages. 1-10. This was my favorite, and it went with my theme. Animal Number Coloring Pages. Here is the original post. I just printed mine on scrap paper, I didn’t plan to save these masterpieces. :p
- Easel – this is nice for Bible time and crafts.
- Felt Bible Story Board & Figurines. I got mine online at Betty Lukens. Use code ABC20 for 20% off. This is not a must have obviously, but it makes Bible time fun for kids.
- Alphabet Flash Cards – you can find so many different versions on pinterest. But here are some that I liked: Here. Free Homeschool Deals – alphabet flash cards. Animal flash cards.
- Alphabet Blocks – Melissa & Doug
- Books – Dr. Seuss’s ABC, My First Numbers, Curious Baby Counting (I love this because it’s hands on), lots and lots of all kinds of books!
Matthew 22:36-40 is our main verse for this month, going with the Valentine theme of Love. “Love the Lord with all your heart…and your neighbor as yourself…”
I made a chalkboard to write the verse of the month on. I used this blue Martha Stewart Chalkboard paint. Just use any old board and a paint roller. (it’s still drying)
Some other verses on Love – 1 John 4:19, Luke 3:16, 6:35, 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, 1 Peter 4:8, Psalm 18:1, and of course John 3:16. Tristan LOVES memorizing bible verses. I just have him repeat after me. Being enthusiastic while you read is important. He asks to do it again and again, and what better way to get it ingrained in his little head. Makes my heart glad!
We also get a Bible verse from church that we memorize every week.
We didn’t get our felt board in the mail yet, I can’t wait!
PHONICS(Reading, Writing & Math):
While you color talk about the color of the crayons, the animal that he is coloring, and the number that is on the page. You will be amazed at how quick they catch on when they are having fun! You can download the coloring pages I used above for free.
This month we are learning numbers 1-5, letters A-D, and colors red, purple, green and blue. I will move at his pace, and of course he will probably learn even more than these things just by daily learning activities like playing hide and go seek, counting fingers, and naming the colors of his toys. The most important thing is to have fun – sometimes I need to remind myself of this!
Tristan enjoys going through his alphabet flash cards and repeating the letters after me. We use two different sets of flash cards. One just has just the capitol letters, the other set has lowercase, uppercase, and a picture, like A for apple.
I thought it would be fun to hang up some better quality alphabet pages on the wall or make a flip book. Here is a great post to follow, but I also came up with some different ones. You can buy them off of her blog, but I thought it was just as easy and fun to make them ourselves.
Learning is fun for everyone!
You could literally go crazy finding stuff on pinterest to make your homeschooling experience fun, sometimes I just need to stop myself and actually get something done. Arts and crafts is my favorite “subject” if you couldn’t tell. I’m no artist, in fact I even butcher stick figures, ha-ha, so hopefully I can teach my kids how to be better artists. :p
If You try footprint art, I wouldn’t expect it to turn out perfect. I used a foam roller and had my husband help me place the wiggly feet on my canvas. Then I used the same roller to stencil the letters. Just wash out the roller after every color.
Tristan made the sweetest Bee mine valentine for daddy. He can’t wait to give it to him once he gets home from work!
Here are some other heart shaped animals. We still need to make some for Tristan’s Mema and Grammy.
I don’t have much of a schedule for crafts, just monthly goals e.g. valentine cards. I say the more crafts the better, so check back for more valentine/love crafts through the month of February.
Tristan’s goal for this month is to learn how to dress himself. He knows how to clean his room, and where every toy belongs, I’m pretty impressed with his organizing skills. Some of his daily responsibilities include feeding his Beta fish, Nemo, and his Chinese Dwarf hamster, Jerry. Tristan is a big help throwing dirty diapers into the trash for Mommy and giving the girls toys and their nuks to keep them happy.
This is Daddy’s specialty. We both come from musical families, but Ben has some amazing talent that I hope he can pass onto our children. Ben learned to play the piano by ear, but doesn’t know many notes. I know my notes, but it would take me weeks to figure out how to play a song by ear. It will be a joint effort. 🙂
This month we plan to learn how to sing Jesus Loves Me and Old MacDonald had a farm. I like to play classical music during the day such as The Piano Guys, Pride and Prejudice, Handel, and Mozart. I think listening to music gives children a musical ear. Tristan’s favorite music time is watching Cedarmont Kids DVDs and listen to the CDs in the car.
Well that does it for now. Check back to see what other fun crafts and learning times we have through the month. I’ll also try to post some of my favorite easy recipes. Subscribe to my blog so you know when I post, I’m not too consistent with posting at this point. 🙂