Friday, July 9, 2010

Preschool - Week of July 8

I feel like we were really busy with school this week, but looking back through the pictures, it doesn't look like much. Hmm... Crumpet was much less focused this week - the thrill of the workboxes has worn off! - but he was generally cooperative.

I started a morning calendar routine. First we fill in the date on our calendar, and then we sing a days of the week song. Amber at Refined Metals Academy posted a video of herself singing the song with her kids. I'm hoping to start learning a little Spanish with Crumpet, so we count to 3 in Spanish. Then, we work on Crumpet's name - learning his whole name and spelling it. Lastly, we are going to memorize a nursery rhyme each week. There are great nursery rhyme pictures and sequencing cards here. Of course, this is all great in theory. However, last week I mentioned that Crumpet won't sing songs or repeat things when asked. Things like Spanish numbers, his own name (in his entire life, he has said his real name once - he hates his name), and nursery rhymes. So calendar time is a bit of a struggle right now! I'm hoping with time, he'll give in and join me, or somehow let it slip that he's learning the information??!!

As for other subjects:
Math: We continued with the McRuffy math book, and it's going well so far. I also made up some laminated tracing cards so he could work on writing the numbers 1-10. Crumpet is really not ready to write on his own yet, but he loves to trace letters and numbers.
Fine Motor Skills:
We've been doing some Kumon cutting and maze workbook pages each week.

Household Skills:
Crumpet has been helping me with lots of the food prep at home. Look at the cute breakfast we made yesterday. Heart shaped eggs in toast!
Science and Nature:
We went entirely crazy and bought tons of beautiful Hawaiian plants last weekend, and planted lots of gardens around our tiny backyard. Crumpet and I started our very first vegetable garden, and we're excited to see if we get any food from it. There are already lots of green shoots poking up from the ground!
Crumpet asked me what "old fashioned" meant, so I decided it was time to read Then and Now, by Peter Firmin. This is a great book that I found on the Sonlight curriculum list. On one page, there are pictures of what life used to be like on the street, and on the opposite page, there is a picture of modern life in the same place. There are school scenes, shop scenes, etc. It's a great introduction to the fact that things change over time.
We continued to work on the alphabet. We repeated our beanbag toss game daily, and it's clear that Crumpet is getting close to memorizing the whole alphabet. We also did the alphabet walk from last week. At the end of the week, I flipped all the cards over so they were blank, and told him to tell me what each card should be. I told him he could have an M+M for each letter he got right. I was afraid I'd be giving him 26 m+m's for breakfast, but instead, he panicked! He told me he couldn't possibly know what the letters were if he couldn't read them! So he made it to C, and no further. We'll keep trying...

Five in a Row: Last year, I wrote a bit about the Five in a Row curriculum. It's a series of unit studies based on literature. Then I found a free version at Homeschool Share. We gave it a try this week, using the book The Mitten, written by Jan Brett, because we already owned the book.
Crumpet decorated his own mitten, and then we acted out the story, placing each animal in the mitten in the appropriate order and then having them all fall out at the end. We measured things that stretch with a measuring tape, talked about the different animals, and generally followed the lesson plan on the website. We also did a mini study about the Ukraine, where this story originated. Our library has a fantastic thing called Culture Grams with great info about countries around the world. We kept it short - we looked at the Ukrainian flag, heard the national anthem, watched a slideshow of pictures of the country, and learned a few interesting facts about kids there.
Then we read about the art of decorating pysanka eggs - beautiful, intricate painting on blown eggs. I printed a coloring sheet for Crumpet to design. After he colored it, he decided that he should have used blue and yellow instead, since those are the colors of the Ukrainian flag. So he did learn something!
Unfortunately, this will be the last Homeschool Share unit study we do for a while, because our library has NONE of the other books on the list. Eventually, I will check out the other libraries on the island, but I'm not sure when.

: We finally have paint! It was NOT easy to find - there is one chain craft store on this island and it's awful. I found pink and yellow paint. Nothing else. We resorted to buying a box of Crayola paints at Walmart- they are fine paints but come in tiny little tubs... Regardless, Crumpet is thrilled to be painting again.
Last week, Crumpet created his own art museum. I decided to take him to a real art museum this week. We went to the Honolulu Academy of Arts, which turned out to be a great choice. There is a great variety of art from all over the world. There were several beautiful little gardens. These tall structures are standing over a little waterfall, and they were my personal favorite...
At the entrance to the museum, we were given a worksheet with pictures of 4 fish paintings that were scattered throughout the museum. Then we were sent off on a scavenger hunt, and Crumpet got a prize at the end for finding them all. It's a great way for little kids to have fun, and get used to visiting museums at the same time.

Fun Time:
After completing his workboxes , Crumpet gets to play with a special toy. This week, we tried out a new game I found at the dollar store. It's a box full of shapes and you use them to create lots of goofy people. There are other boxes for vehicles, etc, but we found this box could be used to make those too. We made sea scenes and vehicles and silly people for a long time.
For other preschool blogs, check out Preschool Corner at Homeschool Creations!


  1. The interlibrary loan system for the Hawaii Public Library is excellent! I used it all the time. The children's librarian at our library in Kihei is wonderful. Try to make friends with your local librarian too.

    As far as crafts go, yeah- it is hard to get anything on the islands. And you will find that companies won't ship a lot of things to the island. I ended up with Crayola poster paint from Walmart as well. But there are several home-made recipes for paints on-line and those might be worth a try.

  2. Hello,
    I like the way you followed your son's interests by going to the museum and reading the book, "then and now." The garden looked like a ton of fun, too!
    I blog about homepreschooling/homeschooling at and hope you'll come and visit.

  3. It sounds like you are settling in. I really relaxed with any schooling for the summer, and we only read, do some geography related activities and play. The book "Then and Now" looks really neat, and it's awesome that you made it to a real museum.

  4. Looks like you all had a great week! Those heart shaped eggs in toast look so yummy, what a neat idea!

  5. Wow! What a great week. We make the same breakfast for special occasions sometimes. We love "bird in a nest" as well call it.

  6. These are all fantastic ideas! Thanks for sharing! I think I will just copy you! =)