Winter Wonderland Week Three – Bird Feeders

This week we delved deeper into what winter is and how different animals survive during colder months. The two books we focused on were Hibernation and How Do You Know It’s Winter? Both books were fairly short, but packed with great information.

For our growth mindset book, we checked out The Most Magnificent Thing. It’s about a girl who has many failed attempts at making a new invention before realizing that her inventions have created something magnificent. We began the second Life of Fred book. Instead of seven, this one seems to be focusing on the number nine. Just like the first book, this one is engaging, and is helping build a foundation for skills they’ll use later on in harder math levels. The books introduced counting by fives and tens which Mimi loves. This week we spent a lot of time counting by fives, tens, and hundreds. We also quizzed each other on basic mental math which was a lot of fun. 

Sleep Big Bear, Sleep was a book about a bear who should’ve been hibernating, but kept getting the wrong message. It was a fun book that reiterated what the girls were learning about winter and hibernation. The girls picked out a few books on their own this week: Ben Rides On, The Black Book of Colors, and Little Goblins Ten.

Ben Rides On is about a boy who is being bullied. He extends kindness to the bully, which changes the perspective of the bully. It was short and sweet with a great message.

The Black Book of Colors was very intriguing. Adi picked it out as we were heading to the library checkout and I didn’t really give it a second thought or guess as to what it was about. It looked so nondescript, but ended up being extremely profound.  It gave a description of colors and raised lines of different shapes and things like waves, strawberries, and grass. It also included a braille alphabet. It helps give an idea of what it’s like to live without being able to see. One of our dogs is blind and anything that can help cultivate understanding and empathy is wonderful.

The last book we read this week was Little Goblins Ten. It was a simple rhyming and counting book. The girls had fun guessing what the rhyming words would be. It was a Halloween book so I’m hoping that we remember it this coming fall. I think they’d enjoy hearing it again!One of my favorite parts of homeschooling is being there to see the moment something clicks in Mimi’s mind or when she does something better than she expected and her face lights up. She’s been having a little bit of difficulty when it comes to writing the number three. These two pictures were taken after she wrote some awesome threes.

This week’s letter was M so I planned to do a “Magic Name” activity where I’d write their name in white crayon and they’d paint over it in watercolors to reveal their name. I didn’t tell them what to expect beforehand, just that their painting would reveal something. We excitedly painted and waited and nothing happened. Well, the paper shredded from the watercolors and that was it. The paper I used was a little too thin so the paint absorbed into the back of the paper and became ruined before revealing their names. I grabbed some heavier paper, hid myself in the bedroom while I wrote their names and we tried again. Second time was a charm!

The girls have had a little bit of a rough time getting along lately, but this week was a turning point. They were cooperative and really began appreciating each other again. I was able to snap this sweet moment of Mimi teaching Adi how to weave.

We made bird feeders with peanut butter and bulk bird seed. This was a little difficult with eager dogs at our feet so next time we’ll have to set it up differently. Regardless of that, the girls enjoyed it and the birds enjoyed it even more! We’ve had several birds a day in our yard which has been fun to watch.

We visited the library twice this week. The first time was to check out books. Adi found a tiny book called More and More Ant and Bee that the librarian said taught her to read, and Mimi checked out a Fancy Nancy book. Adi’s baby doll accompanied us on this trip.

Mimi got the chance to bag our groceries and the cashier guided her in the proper way to put the items into her bag. She was really proud of how great it turned out. No squished chips!

For our second trip to the library, we did a few Valentine’s crafts. The girls strung beads onto pipe cleaners, built with cardboard hearts, and made Valentine’s cards. There were also gummy hearts and marshmallows to make structures with skewers. Since I wasn’t sure if I could keep Adi from sneaking a candy, we picked up some marshmallows we can eat and made the structures at home. Mimi enjoyed this activity, talking to herself or the structure the entire time as she built it. “Let’s see, this goes here. Oh no! Don’t fall! I must need to put one here.” I’ll be looking up more hands on activities like this we can incorporate.

This week Adi got her very own ukulele so she can play just like big sister. I love to see their love of music grow!

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