Saturday, April 20, 2013

We had an amazing time with the Cherry Blossom Unit Study at Co-Op. One mom supplied us with National Park Service Handouts from the Cherry Blossom festival, thank you Mrs. N. Another mom brought a video about the Blossoms, thank you Mrs. M. While another mom lead the class in craft techniques. The kids had some very creative interpretation of the Cherry Blossoms. The Student went for a Zen minimalist technique that was beautiful. 

Books about the Cherry Blossoms:


Monday, April 15, 2013

Washington DC Cherry Blossoms 2013 Unit Study and Co-Op Plans

A sure sign that spring has arrived in Washington DC is the sighting of Cherry Blossoms. It is annual event that brings millions into the district as well area residents out of the winter hiding places to enjoy this natural notice that winter is behind us. It is one of the most beautiful experiences here in the district. This year’s blossoms were slow bloomers because of the cold weather. Once they arrived it was amazing.

So what is all this excitement over a cherry tree and Washington? First here is a little history …

The first two of the 3,000 trees donated by Japan to the United States were planted on March 27, 1912, by first lady Helen Taft and the wife of the Japanese ambassador. The planting was marked with a small story in the newspaper. Over the next eight years the rest of the trees would be planted around the Tidal Basin and in East Potomac Park. 

Today, 100 years later, hundreds of thousands of people come to Washington each year just to walk under the gently arching branches of the Yoshino, Akebono and Kwanzan trees. 

Many people, maybe including you, can’t imagine Washington without the cherry trees. But we probably wouldn’t be enjoying them today if it weren’t for Eliza Scidmore (pronounced Sid-more). In 1885 she visited Japan, where she first saw cherry trees. She returned to her home in Washington and spent the next 24 years pushing for the planting of cherry trees in the nation’s capital. She had no luck until she wrote a letter in 1909 to Mrs. Taft, the wife of President William Howard Taft. She loved the idea, and soon the plan for the plantings was underway. Scidmore was there when Mrs. Taft planted the first trees. 

And the rest, as they say, is history. Beautiful, beautiful history. — Tracy Grant, Washington Pos

Additional History Resources:
National Park Service
Cherry Blossom Festival

Hanami (a traditional Japanese custom of enjoying the cherry blossoms in bloom) and the 'National Cherry Blossom Festival' (an American festival held in Washington D.C. in remembrance of the occasions in which Japan gave the United States thousands of cherry blossom trees as a symbol of friendship). Every year millions attend this festival to enjoy the blossoms. A millions more enjoy viewing the “Cherry Blossom Webcam.

Here are some photos of our Hanami last week.

If you would like to extend you Cherry Blossom experience please check out the National Cherry Blossoms’ website for actives including earning a Girl Scout Patch.

Here are the tentative plans for our co-op lesson:

Also there will be microscopes the set up a Cherry Blossom science station to examine the petals and buds of samples.


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

15 Goals for this Week

I have not posted goals in a long time. The primary reason is because I beat myself up when I don’t accomplished half of the goals. So I opted out but still beat myself up for not planning. Does that make sense? Well after rereading Crystal Paine’s book I realized that maybe…just maybe I am planning to do too much in one week. My type is was showing big time. This week I am going with basic goals and limiting myself to three goals per category. The primary goal this week is to access how realistic is my goal planning process. 

This week’s goals:

Family/Marriage/Mothering Goals 

1. Finish Phantom Tollbooth aloud at lunch.

2. Have a movie night with hubby and not fall asleep. 
3. Have 30 minute couch time three times this week with kiddo where we talk /read/listen to any subject of his choosing, including Star Wars. 

Personal Goals 
4. Memorize listen to Pastor’s sermon Big Dream. 
5. Complete 2 miles five times this week. 
6. Continue with the Early to Rise Challenge. 

Homeschool Goals
7. Do a complete a seven day school plan and post on blog. 
8. Schedule work on The Strange Case of Origami Yoda.
9. Establish and post March/April Calendar with all activities and play dates.

 Homemaking Goals 
10. Do a complete a seven day menu plan. 
11. Develop a Spring Cleaning/Decluttering project plan. 
12. Start T-shirt blanket. 

Business Goals 
13. Schedule co-op planning meeting.
14. Post in blog five times this week including Wordless Wednesday. 
15. Investigate how to update blog.


Friday, March 15, 2013

Beware the ides of March..Literature Study

Caesar: Who is it in the press that calls on me?
 I hear a tongue shriller than all the music
Cry "Caesar!" 
Speak, Caesar is turn'd to hear. 

 Soothsayer: Beware the ides of March. 

 Caesar: What man is that?

 Brutus: A soothsayer bids you beware the ides of March. 

 Julius Caesar Act 1, scene 2, 15–19

In honor of the ides of March we will be studying Shakespeare's Julius Caesar in the form of 
Shakespeare's Julius Caesar for Kids by by Brendan P. Kelso, Hannah Sidaris-Green and Shana Lopez.


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Happy Pi Day- Homeschool Celebration

Happy Pi Day!
We will be celebrating Pi Day with Co-Op friends.  We are scheduled to complete scavenger hunt, share treat and several Pi themed games.  At 3:14 pm we will sing Happy Birthday to Einstein.

We will post all the fun later.  But here is a peek how we kicked off Pi Day.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Fine Motor Challenge: Cat's Cradle

Every month I try to have a fine motor challenge for the student. This month I went "old school" with Klutz Cat's Cradle Book.

 According to the description: Great for building fine-motor skills and following directions

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Teaching the 57th Inaugural

Congratulations, You've received a badge! 

 Here's what Smithsonian Center for Education and Museum Studies said:
Thank you, Guidemom, for participating in the conference 'Teaching the 57th c.' We look forward to your continued involvement in the Smithsonian Education Online Conference community.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Explaining The Card Catalog

Today's writing assignment was how to use reference material as a source for writing.  In the lesson discussion it introduced the card catalog. I remember spending days on this in elementary school and being bored out of my mind.  We spent a whole week looking through the cards labeling each section over and over again.  I was NOT looking forward to sharing this experience with my digital kiddo.

Thankful I did not have to worry.  The K12 program introduces the card catalog as point of history and moves on to a digital exercise of how to search in the library.  But in the interest of due diligence I wanted to actually show my child an actual card catalog.  Easy?  No.  There is not one in the whole county.  Even the historical small libraries are digital. They only place we can find one is downtown at the Library of Congress.
Field Trip!!!!!

We did find a movie on Brain Pop Jr. and YouTube about the card catalog.  Enjoy!