Thursday, August 02, 2007
With silver bells and cockle shells...
Well, minus the silver bells, of course!

I have to say, it was not the easiest of things to get my butt in gear and put together a theme unit for my kids. Especially since I wanted Taryn to be involved, and thus I would need to make it somewhat understandable for her. Not to mention the fact that I really do have a hard time getting my brain to do what I tell it to took a lot of effort on my part to stay focused and actually finish the plan. However, I am SO HAPPY I did! My kids are LOVING learning about the ocean so far!

Yesterday we did volcanoes and islands, and how the beach is made. We read a book to start it off, then looked at pictures of volcanoes and talked about how they work. Then they colored pictures of a volcano, which we are going to use soon to make a big ocean scene (once I get some big, blue paper to hang somewhere on the wall and find the right wall for it!). After that, we watched a video on YouTube about volcanoes, which I thought would mostly be enjoyed for the fun song, but TJ actually was very interested in the different pictures of volcanoes and how they were made up! Once we had watched that three times, yes, three times, we made volcanoes out of play-doh. It took a lot of help on my part to get them shaped right, but they did have some input in it. I have never actually made a volcano before, so I was pleasantly surprised and super pleased at how easy it was and how well it worked. We must have made them explode at least a thousand times! TJ LOVED it! Taryn thought it was cool for a bit, then decided that wondering aimlessly around the house with her blanket would be a bit more fun!

Get this: Last night we went downtown w/Trey's sister and her kids, and as we were walking to a restaurant to get some dessert, Trey stopped to look at a dresser in a window covered in shells. I snapped at him to hurry up, b/c Taryn was being cranky, and I didn't want it to take any longer than necessary to get home. As we walked away, though, I thought, "Hmmm, I wonder if that store sells shells individually?" Guess what, they did! There was a whole room full of shells, little ones, big ones, all types! It was great! I ended up getting a bag of tiny ones that we are going to use to make a beach in a jar later (gotta get some sand still), and some medium sized ones to look at and learn about. TJ and Taryn were in hog heaven. Every three seconds they would grab another shell and yell, "LOOK, MOMMY!" "MOMMY, CHECK IT OUT!" TJ never wanted to leave. How great was that!

For today's lesson on shells, we read Seashells by the Seashore, then looked at the shells we bought last night. We compared them and tried to find matches in our book. Then we matched them according to size, shape, color, and all that good stuff. We picked our favorites, then moved on. Next, we read A House for Hermit Crab, and talked about the animals inside of shells, and why they leave them (like when you grow out of your clothes and shoes). We also talked about making his shell special to live in, like we decorate our own house. They colored a picture of shells, and we did a matching game with different colored paper shells, and then it was time to paint and decorate our own shells! Taryn was kinda here and there throughout the lesson, but she was all over it when it was time to paint! They did an awesome job, and all I have to say is that this is such a great motivator! I'm all on board to homeschool now! I mean, yeah, I know they won't always be this interested, and we won't always have this much fun, but still, it's a good way to start!

PS-That extra person is Katie, my neice. She wanted to do it with us, and I think she may have actually enjoyed it!

Talk to you later! Have a great day!
posted by Christi at 2:15 PM | Permalink |


  • At 7:19 PM, Blogger k8

    THAT's the oomph our volcanoes were missing...the red food coloring! How long do you suppose this unit will take to finish just out of curiosity?

  • At 8:11 PM, Blogger Julia

    I'm glad they like it so much. Katie looks a lot more grown up since last time I saw her.

  • At 10:13 PM, Blogger Christi

    Kate, I'm guessing it will take around two and a half to three weeks, give or take. We probably won't do it every single day of the week, and some days might go over into the next day.

  • At 10:38 PM, Blogger Kurt

    Put some smocks on those kids! That's a white shirt!

  • At 10:15 AM, Blogger holy chaos


    so are you homeschooling your kids or just having fun???

    (something is wrong with that question!) hehehe!