Monday, March 14, 2011

Week 24 & 25: Volcano Studies

I haven’t been doing as well as I would like with my weekly wrap-up posts, life has been busy, so for now I will continue doing what I can and combining when needed (like this time).



I can’t remember when, but we stopped going forward in our Singapore workbook and decided to camp out for a little while in subtraction in order for Treyton to master it a little better. While he was able to subtract using his fingers, he wasn’t fully comprehending why we subtract, or memorizing any of the subtraction facts. Now that we’ve taken a couple of weeks to play around with subtraction (and I literally mean “play around with”) he’s doing much better. IMG_0003We spent most of our time doing the Number Sentence Creator Worksheet I made along with some worksheets and games (some from superteacher worksheets). I think we will get back to our normal Singapore workbook next week and by week 27 we will move on to the next unit.  IMG_0023   


I’ve been having fun implementing a little bit more reading into our schedule.

In honor of Dr. Seuss’ birthday I pulled out our a few of his books and put them on our read-aloud shelf in the living room. After reading “The Foot Book” I explained, to Treyton what antonyms were and had him come up with two antonyms on his own. He then made his own Little Antonym Book from Kinderpond(????)


We also read “The Cat and the Hat” and made a Dr. Seuss hat out of poster board and construction paper. IMG_0006(An idea I got from somewhere in the blogging world, but for the life of me I can’t remember where now). IMG_0008We only made one hat, and luckily it fits Treyton’s head better because Lexie refuses to wear it ;)   IMG_0011  IMG_0013

We had picked up a book at the library called “Animal Baths”. Lexie picked it up one night over the weekend after dinner so I sat on the floor and read it to her, Treyton and Dad kept piping in with their opinions on different things we read. It was a fun read – then on Tuesday this week, Treyton was watching Cat in the Hat on PBS and wouldn’t you know it, the show was called “Bathtime” and was on Animal Baths!! Kind of a fun coincidence.

We continue to read through Pippi Longstocking, which Treyton is thoroughly enjoying.

MFW 1st Grade:

We finally started using Treyton’s Bible reader!


This was the most exciting happening this week. From this point on our Bible stories will be a part of MFW’s curriculum. We’re starting at the beginning, on day 1 of creation and working towards the New Testament church. With each Bible reader reading Treyton will narrate and illustrate the story in his very own Bible Notebook. IMG_0027

For creation the 7 days of creation we will be adding to 1 single Bible notebook page for each day.


  • Day 1 he colored half his Bible notebook page black (for dark) and left the other half white (for light).
  • Day 2 he drew water and clouds on the light side of the paper
  • Day 3 he added a brown piece of construction paper above the water and added plants and trees
  • Day 4 he put star and moon stickers on the dark side as well as a sun cut-out on the left side
  • Day 5 he added bird and fish stickers

They wanted him to draw more than he did, but he started to get frustrated by how to draw on top of what he had already drawn (for example putting fish in the water) so I allowed him to use stickers instead.



Treyton continues to memorize a verse a week in his AWANA program. For these two weeks he learned “R is for Raised 1 Corinthians 15:4 - That he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the scriptures.” and “K is for Keep James 2:10 – Whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.”


We use his memory verses for his copywork which he doesn’t really enjoy all that much but I think for him to do it once a week okay for him. It is teaching him to watch what he is doing, and to concentrate in order to not miss words or right parts more than once.


Through the TOS Crew we have gotten a lot more access to some neat on-line games. Most recently we added in a music/piano course called Kinderbach and a phonic game called Kabongo. Treyton has been loving having a little computer time throughout his week.


I recently ordered the Usborne Children’s Book of Art from a friends Usborne party and we have LOVED this new addition. We were using the “Look With Me” series, but had to return them to the library so this book came at a perfect time and has sparked a few fun conversations, and has inspired me a little more in the area of art. I’m looking forward to going through this book together and learning (and using) different art mediums.


We started a volcano unit in week 24. We were supposed to be doing the sun and moon (according to MFW) but I saw that they had a volcano week in 3 weeks and I wanted to spend longer than just a week working on Volcanoes.

As usual, we started our unit by reading several volcano books. There were several our four favorites were:

One of the first projects we did was to make an illustration of the earth's layers.  We took three different sized-colored circles and made an example of the earth’s layers (the crust, the core and the mantra). We took a picture of the earth and cut it in half to place over our layers for the “full affect”.


We talked about how volcanoes were formed, and how it’s the lava cooling over and over again that actually creates the volcanic mountain we see, but that that is not how it starts.

We took a cup, cut a hole in the bottom, put a tube of toothpaste in it, place dirt in the cup and gently squeeze out the toothpaste. As we squeezed out the toothpaste, we were able to watch the dirt rise up and form a “mountain”. A great example of how volcanoes change the earth.


I took an M&M and slammed it on the table to cause it to crack. I explained how the earth’s crust looks similar, and that the “pieces” are called plates. We talked about how it is most common for the Magma to come through the cracks and that’s what starts to form volcanoes.

We watched a few volcano movies in the first two weeks, which I had to follow up each time with the disclosure that as Christians we don’t believe in the big bang theory, and so on and so forth. But they were fun for Treyton and he really loves watching lava flowing across the screen (who doesn’t?).

I drew a picture of a volcano on a large piece of white paper and drawn in a few places to label the volcanic parts. I drew an identical picture inside of Treyton’s book for him to keep for himself. IMG_0039

I also printed off a few lapbooking pieces from Homeschool Share’s site that we added into our book. One of which was a “Where are the Volcanoes?” Map and Graph which Treyton colored.


Tot School:

IMG_0028Lexie has been participating in school even more than normal. She loves sitting with me and Treyton and listening in on whatever it is we are working on.

IMG_0087We actually had a few nice days the past two weeks so we got our bikes out and I tried to teach Lexa how to peddle. It was a great introduction, but she has a long way to go before she tones the muscles she’s going to need. She kept telling “Too hard, mama, too hard.” I can’t wait until spring so we can actually spend some time outside working on her new skills! IMG_0041She continues to work on her shapes. We are focusing mostly on circle and square right now, the two she struggles with the most. I’m not really sure why these two shapes have been so hard for her to learn, when she learned the other ones so easily. She enjoys her shape mats from Confessions of a Homeschooler, so that is what we primarily use right now. IMG_0025She also enjoys her shape coloring book, I think it makes her feel like a “big girl” to have her own workbook.

IMG_0004 She’s doing great in her counting – she counts rote to 10, and really the only time she messes up is if she concentrates too hard. I caught her counting the other day in her room and she made it to 13 with no mistakes.

One day, I took out a number activity from Confessions of a Homeschooler that I had printed a while ago and laminated. I wanted to see if she was ready to start learning/working with numerals. IMG_0013She really enjoyed working with me on them, and she recognized the number 1 already on her own. This is something I will continue to do every now and then (though only lightly until she masters her shapes a little better). IMG_0016

Alexa is a great big sister, she watches Audrey closely to make sure she isn’t hurting herself, but is also able to leave her be to just play on her own when she needs to. Audrey is really taken by Alexa and watches her closely, too. I love watching them interact.    IMG_0097


Preschool Corner @ Homeschool Creations

Tot School @ 1+1+1=1

Weekly Wrap-Up @ Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers


Unknown said...

I love these ideas. I am curious about the movies that you guys watched for your volcano unit. Were they Hollywood disaster movies or documentaries, or what? Thanks for the info. My son is "into" disasters right now (boys are strange) so I will probably borrow some of your ideas.

Amber said...

We watched the DK Eyewitness video which we got from the library and then there were two videos available for download from amazon. I got them for free (being a prime member) if you're not a prime member I believe they cost 1.00 to download.

Unknown said...

Thanks! I always forget about those DK videos.