Thursday, July 28, 2011

Fiction + Non-Fiction

Yesterday while we were in the car - on our way to go rollerskating baby!! - L & I stumbled into a conversation about the difference between 'Fiction' and 'Non-Fiction'.

That fed into a game where I said the name of a book in the boys library collection & he told me if it was Fiction or Non-Fiction. To my surprise he got it right every time! We played it so many times that I couldn't think of any more books. Phew!

So, today, he made Fiction & Non-Fiction labels.

Showed his Montessori credentials by insisting that he check that the widths of his labels matched ;)

Laid out 2 mats...

Collected a pile of books from his room..

& got sorting :)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Cooking Day: Vegetarian Lasagna

In keeping with our weekly rhythm, yesterday was 'Cooking Day'.
While L prepared our morning tea...

...I prepped the spinach & ricotta filling (cook onion & garlic with a little salt until soft; wilt fresh spinach; process with a good ricotta until smooth).

Next, L sliced olives and peeled sweet potatoes. I sliced a tomato and grated some tasty cheese and thinly sliced his sweet potatoes. I also opened a jar a pasta sauce! Lol. (I do usually make my own homemade tomato sauce for lasagna but I wanted to keep this reasonably simple).

Ready for layering! I was in charge of dipping the pasta sheets in hot water (to the right of the lasagna tray) & L was in charge of layering all of our delicious ingredients.

Go Lovely! * A little sauce 2 start * pasta sheets * sweet potato * spinach + ricotta * pasta sheets * sauce * REPEAT * top with the grated cheese * finish with sliced tomato and olives.

Served with a fresh garden salad and followed by Bill Granger's Passionfruit Pudding (I substituted plain flour for Quinoa flour and it was A-mazing!).

Delish. What are your favourite recipes to cook with kids? A. x

Monday, July 25, 2011

The 7 days of the week

Today we were talking about the days of the week.

I'm putting a calendar corkboard together (a little inspired by Counting Coconuts :) but it's not pretty enough for photos yet!

I think this sweet *Days of the Week * Rainbow Wheel* is though:

L and I were discussing the fact that there are 7 colours of the rainbow and 7 days of the week so if seemed like a great idea to combine these thoughts.

The wheel is very easy to make. Take 2 paper plates & trim one down to make the smaller circle. Divide the plates into 7 equal parts - a little more than 51 degrees if u happen to have measuring apparatus on hand - I didn't & mine is a little skew but I think it's still okay.

Colour each section it's own rainbow colour (in order) Red * Orange * Yellow * Green * Blue * Indigo * Violet.

When that's done, write the names of the days in sequence around the plate.

The smaller plate introduces a 2nd concept: Yesterday * Today * Tomorrow. Attach the 2 plates at the centre with a brad so that the top plate spins.


The child lines the 'Today' segment up with the current day of the week and can also see what 'Yesterday' was & 'Tomorrow' will be.

Lovely has done so much brilliant self-motivated writing today that when he didn't want to write all of the days himself I was happy to offer to help.

I think this is a wonderful crafty learning activity. The child can "see" the cyclical nature of the week; the particular sequence of days; the names of the days & how they're spelt for future reference; the concept of Y*T*T; as well as the sequence of the colours of the rainbow! Beautiful.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The 5 year old mash up

You know it's a good party when the dj let's a couple of 5 year olds take over his booth!

'Fools Gold' never sounded so good! ;)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Making a simple *Whale* softie

We've been learning about Whales this week and for our first CRAFT + MAKiNG DAY I decided that L and I would make a soft Whale toy.

Meet "Cutie" :)

L had wanted to buy a soft whale at the lighthouse when we were whale watching earlier in the week, and I thought that this would a wonderful opportunity to show him that sometimes we can MAKE the things that we want!

Here's a simple step-by-step:

1. Use Google Images to find the shape that you want. Lovely chose this one.
2. Print out the image & make any alterations.

3.  Choose some fabric and lay two pieces on top of each other, with the wrong side facing out.
4. Cut out your fabric. I pinned the paper to my fabric and cut an wide edge around it all.

5. Draw a line  where you will be stitching (it won't be visible as you are working on the 'wrong' side)

6. Get stitching! 
We alternated 3 stitches each. Kinda ;) Me, Me, Lovely, Me, Lovely, Me, Me, Me. Lol.
He's hesitant about sewing but I really wanted him to practice and to be able to feel a sense of ownership in the work. At the same time I didn't pressure him to do more than he wanted.

7. Stitch all the way around your shape but leave a reasonably large gap for the next step...
8. Turn it inside out. Or outside in. You know what I mean!
This can be fiddly - I realised that we'd never get the spout turned so it got culled at this point. You can use a blunt lead pencil to help you.

9. Make any *extras* you want to include. 
Lovely coloured a heart for our whale :) and we choose some small crystals too.

10. Stuff your softie!
We used pure fleece - it's so beautiful. Lovely enjoyed this part a lot. We added the extras as we went.
11. Stich up that gap & embroider a few simple details like the face we did & Voila! A new friend :)

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Lighthouse Soaring.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Our new weekly routine

As our new adventure begins, I am basing our weekly schedule around the classroom routine that L followed for the first half of the year. In typical Waldorf fashion he's taken to seeing the week in terms of "Painting Day", "Baking Day" etc. and I think continuing this will help him with the transition. The only major change I'm making is introducing *Outing Day* - Yippee!

* MONDAY - Cooking Day
* TUESDAY - Drawing Day
* WEDNESDAY - Outing Day
* THURSDAY - Painting Day
* FRIDAY - Craft + Making Day

He's not too keen on the idea of keeping Craft Day. Lol. But I've tweaked it to include 'making' and I'm sure we will find lots of fun activities.

Monday we baked buns. Tuesday we did snow drawings.
And - today - we went whale watching.... ahhhhhh, heaven!

I love this rhythm. But it's also outside of this that it gets exciting! I am utilizing the wonderful classroom guides from New Child Montessori (i seem to mention them often here on my blog!).

All images copyright Rainbow Mama.
I'm following the guides by season & this week we are *actively* learning about Winter. With special focus on 'Places where it snows in Winter' Ie. Not here! Hence the snow drawings (White crayons and pastel on dark paper), snow making (using our snowcone machine to make snow to play with in the yard - yep, all quickly melted away by our glorious winter sunshine), receiving timely postcards from Alaska!, reading loads of books, and seeing with our own eyes the Winter migration of Humpback Whales past our coastline.

And we're only on Day 3 :)

How do you like to structure your week and what Winter activities do your children love? I'd love to hear! x

Yo! Mansted Family Project

I'd like to  introduce you to a beautiful friend of mine. Her name is Tracey and her homeschool | family | life blog is called the Mansted Family Project. Here are some pix of our combined crazy-cats hanging out together :) 

We met at an aquanatal class when we were both first pregnant with bub number one and our friendship has blossomed ever since. 

Tracey & I share so many *quirks* (as our families will attest! ;) and interests & I take great inspiration from her generous and enthusiastic spirit.

Please say hello :) Mansted Family Project!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Highlights from our first *official* day

Adventures of a Homeschoolin' Mama!

Well... what a difference a few weeks makes :)

After an extended meditation on Life, Love & the Universe & - oh, that's it - my Montessori teacher training dreams... almost out of the blue, we have decided 2 bring Lovely home for the rest of the year.

It's a long-term dream and an opportunity (as he won't turn 6 until after the school year ends, there is no legal obligation to enroll him in a school nor register him as a homeschooler) to see how if works for our family.

It means that - for now at least - my study plans are on hold but it feels like such a wonderful opportunity to 'learn on the job'.

So... today was day 1 & a grand success. Welcome home Lovely-one. xxx

Dr Montessori's 10 commandments to parents...

I'm not sure where I originally printed this from but a similar document can be found at

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Testing BlogPress on my iPhone

It will be cool if this works well!

Anyone else using an app 4 blogger?

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