Monday, June 28, 2010

Kicking Around

Hey everyone

I'm still here...

Summer is going to be low key in the area of mediational learning. I'm going to be honing all that I've learned and making memories with the kids.

To free up my time I will only be on the computer on the weekends...if I'm not travelling somewhere.

Even though we are learning everyday, I'm not as intentional with mediation as I am during the typical school months.
Every ground needs rest and this is ours.

Be pleasantly surprised when stuff shows up here!

Happy Summer!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Saturday June 5-A big day out

A day out learning about nature and history!
Buzzing bees
Followed by a nature walk
Glorious nature!
A quiet walk in nature
A gopher snake's skin
A new game...which the mother's quickly discouraged at the sight of the attendant's face and quiet suggestion that the balls and sticks have other uses
Studying the bees again
Putting the sticks to good use
Playing the ant game
Cousins forever!

Picnic lunch while we wait out the thunderstorm and downpour
Rain's over! Time for rattlesnake rock
A glimpse at the warrior shirts
And the fancy dress on exhibit at the musuem
Time to play the drum
A lesson on drum playing
Flying an airplane
A close encounter with a buffalo

Decorating our math game
Making a catch and toss game
Embellishing our game
Making traditional shirts
A sweet treat
A look in at the new fishes at the library

A great day had by all!

Friday June 4

The day started with a look at our microscope slides...we do need a microscope to do the 'looking' part of this though (I couldn't resist the slides at a rummage sale as we all know I will have a microscope directly)
Kitchen play and a little lesson on not leaving the living room a mess!
You remember these right?
So we have loads of magazines and today we yanked a bunch out and just did loads of activities listed in them.
Try it with us: Super Snake,Super Snake,Super Snake,Super Snake,Super Snake
And we, of course, cut out the dino diorama!
And drew pictures
And built towers
And made secret forts
Family friends came over and we had a smashing time playing games, building things, making messes and cleaning them up.
In fact, they did such a spiffy job cleaning up that I did not have to lift a finger once they left. They are hired and invited back next time my house looks like a zoo...which means tomorrow!
We made homemade pizza...YUM!
And found our way to the computer camera for some serious goofiness
And we had loads of fun with our friends

Friday, June 4, 2010

Picture Perfect!

Isn't that a beautiful bookshelf?
I thought so.
And here's how this photo is going to bring joy to my household.

It's a mediated Learning idea.

Step 1: Tidy your bookshelf
Step 2: Take a picture and PRINT it off
Step 3: Have your children refer to this page whenever they tidy up
Step 4: Mediate

But how do I mediate?
Elementary, Watson!

Take a look at this picture, is there anything different between this picture and the bookshelf?
The puzzle on the floor, where does it belong according to this picture?

Keep the picture in the room and when you have them tidy up, ask them if the shelf is tidy the way it is in the picture.

Thursday June 3-BIG Mistakes!

Yesterday we had our friends over for a very fun day.
Part of Mediated Learning is adapting to change and learning that failure and mistakes are a normal part of the learning process.
So we decided to spend a whole day trying to make as many mistakes as possible. And the results were fun!

We started things off by gathering the kids and asking questions about mistakes. How they felt about them, what mistakes they had made, what they learned about from them.
We talked a little bit about how God can help us in our mistakes and how He can turn all things for good.

Then our friend E told us all about some inventions that were made by accident.
Post-it notes were a fun one to talk about.

ACCIDENTAL INVENTIONS! This was a cheer we said many times throughout the day.

Then we decided to get busy and see if we couldn't make some serious mistakes in the area of spelling.
The kids had a lot of fun tryng to unwrap the ways they would normally and properly spell words. They got the hang of it though. Our friend 'E' spelled boat as bote.
And here is a creative spelling of kangaroo that someone did with the few letters that they had.
A new word is born. A great little talk on why accuracy is important came out of this as well as the etymology of certain words and how new words are created all the time. Some of them by mistake!
Some decided to tell stories on the couch while...
We got down to the business of seeing what kind of mistakes we could make with food. We explained how the potato chip was born by mistake. It was a chef's desire to annoy the patron who kept sending his potatoes back. Instead, the patron loved these and they became a sensation.
We wanted to see if we couldn't make the same kind of mistakes in our kitchen.
We carefully (and not-so carefully!) recorded what each child put in their recipe. We wanted a record of it in case it was a beautiful mistake. Much like the chocolate chip cookie was a wonderful mistake!
We got out a few ingredients and gave everyone the option of putting as much as a cup (the size of the yellow and green ones there) could hold of any ingredients we wanted. There was no recipe, only imagination. It was tempting to stop the kids hands when they loaded a batch of batter with ginger but we wanted them to learn from their mistakes.
My daughter loaded hers with a bit to much salt. She came up with some creative solutions before giving her batter approval.
Everything was used well.
Everyone pointing at the the set of cookies that was expanding.

We had a first batch. And at the first bite it was ok, but we discovered a lingering after taste that no one like. We spit that cookie out and the inventor did too! "I won't make that mistake again!"
These were cookies that surprised us all! Very tasty and delicious and we gobbled them up.
My daughter's compensation for too much salt and her odd mixture of batter created what we called "golden cookie taffy". We all wanted the recipe for this one...alas, we didn't write down everything. We'll have to try and re-create it!

Lots of fun as we kept yelling out "Accidental Inventions!"
Then outdoor play while the moms did a quick wash of the dishes and a sigh of relief. We also took out the cake that had too much ginger. And after tasting we decided that not even there dog would like this one! A lesson learned!
Snack time! Where we ate a whole bunch of mistakes that were created by accident! (Well, except the oranges. We had to get some fruit in there!)
Can we play Blokus in a wrong way? Is there a wrong way to play Blokus? What can we create when we play Blokus differently?
A roll in the mud. A mistake the mom here did not fully appreciate but accepted as a childhood neccessity.

And at the end we were given a parting gift!
A great day had by all.
You should try a day full of mistakes. It's a little hard to get your head around at first but you'd be amazed what you can learn and create.