The View from the Classroom Window

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Come! Come! Come!

(did that get your attention?)

OK friends, the next Old School Monday is upon us!

Next Monday, April 27. 10 am in the Vintage Gym.

Things I have in mind (not in order):
--teaching your kids the consonant song
--new monthly activity called "word play"--this time, Verb charades!
--jump the snake get-em-movin'game
--Pt. 2 of our animal classification series--PLEASE BRING 2-3 little animal toys per child so we can have fun classifying them all. Moms, you might want to encourage different types of animals so we get to classify something from each category. Pictures of animals from magazines are fine too! *Big kids can bring fantasy creatures and have fun explaining to the younger kids how they would classify those!
--circle time--kids can bring a picture or tell about 1) either their favorite animal, or 2) if they were an animal, what would they be?
--please bring any completed projects you would like to share with the group!
--and I will try to remember my spelling book this time so we can give the Spell-down another run if we have time!

Don't forget lunch for your family and one canned good to share with those in need! (And see our previous postings for other general info about these gatherings) And invite your friends!

Tina, do your boys want to come with a game in mind to teach the other kids? Anyone else want to add something to the fun for the day? Please post comments at will!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Book Reviews from the McNabbs

Hey friends! I have been wanting to share a bunch of the books we have been reading for our Kindergarten Curriculum - all Read Alouds (books we read aloud together) for ages 5 and up. I am sure you could find them at the library!! Also, I would love to hear other recommendations you might have for great quality books too! My mom might come for a visit in September, so I can might begin looking now!!

My Father's Dragon - by Ruth Stiles Gannet (Newberry Honor Book)
An adventurous fantasy of Elmer Elevator and the wild island of Tangerina. We loved this story: such beautiful imagination and unpredictability for a young listener. Elmer packs some very unusual things in his backpack for the trip....which keeps you guessing how he will rescue the baby dragon! Our girls were very attentive for this sweet tale. I think there are 2 others that follow in the series, which I would love to check out. I also loved taking my time reading one chapter a day, and asking questions after each chapter to help them with comprehension.

The Boxcar Children - by Gertrude Chandler Warner
Four little kids make their home in an abandoned boxcar after they are orphaned, without knowing they have a grandfather nearby. Very easy vocabulary and with just enough suspense & mystery for youngsters. I love the simple interaction, the sense of wonder, the sweet character of the children and the outcomes of the stories. The girls now pretend to be the characters almost daily, which is wonderful for their imaginative play and manners too. I also love how the characters are so resourceful, independent, responsible, positive and grateful for everything. We have liked these books so much, that we have already read the first 4 in the series of 19. I am hoping that Asia will begin reading these on her own soon.

The Apple and the Arrow - by Mary & Conrad Buff (Newberry Honor Book)
Historical fiction - recounting the legend of William Tell of Switzerland. Told from the perspective of his son, 12-year-old Walter (who gets the apple shot off his head) during the time of revolt against the tyrannical leaders during that time (1291). This story was pretty intense with mature themes and kept us on the edge of our seats. There were parts that were somewhat violent (with some name-calling), action-packed & yet Asia was into the adventure. We actually learned a bunch too! Great themes of freedom, independence, faith and responsibility. We had great talks about standing up for what is right, non-violence, righteousness and courage. It gave us an opportunity to teach her some discernment.

I have a bunch more...but I will write again later. Hope you can find one of these treasures to enjoy soon!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

tidbit--cool placemats

hi moms--

i just wanted to tell you that at OSH in the home section, they have really cool placemats perfect for homeschooling and lunch! solar system, world map, united states (the map ones also label everything in both English and Spanish, so that doubles the learning value!) and the presidents (through GWB). They are really smooth, so function well as art placemats, but if they are on the table while the kids eat, they really enjoy looking at them! Bronwyn esp. likes the one of the Presidents.

And they only cost $1.49 each!