November 20, 2014

Nature Journal Friday - Game Birds

This week’s nature journal assignment was to sketch game birds.

Nature Journal Friday - Game Birds | From Blue Bells and Cockle Shells
Sola and I both learned some important lessons from this nature journaling assignment. Firstly, she learned that when people say that they are eating game birds, they mean they are killing the bird and eating it. This did not go over well. While, we have certainly discussed where meat comes from in the past, my Googling “game birds” to show her what type of birds we were looking for completely shattered her idea of the reality of food. She was very upset for a couple of days, but then tonight, had no problem with eating turkey meatballs, so go figure!

Meanwhile, I learned that taking a talkative and active six year-old hiking to look for specific types of birds is a futile effort. If there were any birds on our three-mile hike, we did not see them or any other wildlife, for that matter. On a positive note, had any bears been out getting ready for winter, they were scared away long before we got near them.Nature Journal Friday - Game Birds | From Blue Bells and Cockle Shells
So we sketched our journal entries from photographs instead. I drew a quail, which I have a bit of a soft spot for as I used to see them running around my neighborhood when I was growing up in Southern California. Sola drew a turkey. A couple of weeks ago, I tried to show her how to make a handprint turkey. She was completely incensed that I would think that a handprint looked anything like a turkey. She then proceeded to show me how to properly draw a turkey, which is to use a hand print and then add a head (my trying to explain to her that the thumb of the handprint was supposed to be the head was met with stoney silence and an evil stare, so I shall remain mute in the future in regards to the drawing of game birds).

On the off chance that anyone noticed, I apologize for missing last week’s post about deer. We had horrid colds and it was only twenty degrees outside, so not only did we not journal, I was too sick to even fake a post.

The assignment for the week after Thanksgiving is to sketch holly or mistletoe.

We actually saw some holly while we were out hiking this week, but it did not have any berries on it yet.

We’d love for you to join us in our weekly nature journaling “assignment”.

If you would like to join us, you can read this post to learn more about the whys and wherefores of our weekly nature journaling assignments. If you do decide to join us, please post a link to your blog post, Instagram photo, Facebook post, etc. showcasing your “assignment”.

I hope that you can find time to get out into nature in the next week and maybe journal while you’re at it.

Maureen

Waldorf Inspired Kindergarten Homeschool - Lesson Plan for Week of December 1

This is the Waldorf inspired kindergarten lesson plan that we will be using for the week of December 1st. Please note that this is not for next week, as we will be taking next week off for Thanksgiving.

Waldorf Inspired Kindergarten Homeschool - Lesson Plan for Week of December 1 | From Blue Bells and Cockle ShellsIf you missed my first week’s post about our kindergarten lesson plans, the books needed to complete our year of lesson plans are listed at the bottom of this post. I will continue to post these lesson plans on Thursdays of the week before they are meant to be used, so that you can be sure you have all the supplies you need to do these with us, if you’d like to join us.

How did your homeschooling go this week?

We recovered from our colds and had a good week this week, though I am looking forward to having next week off. I seem to be behind on a million projects!

Frog went a courtin' and he did ride, uh-huh
Frog went a courtin' and he did ride, uh-huh
Frog went a courtin' and he did ride

With a sword and a pistol by his side, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

He rode right up to Miss Mousie's door, uh-huh
He rode right up to Miss Mousie's door, uh-huh
He rode right up to Miss Mousie's door
Gave three loud raps, and a very big roar, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh

He said, "Miss Mouse, will you marry me? uh-huh
He said, "Miss Mouse, will you marry me? uh-huh
He said, "Miss Mouse, will you marry me?
And oh so happy we will be, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

"Not without Uncle Rat's consent", uh-huh
"Not without Uncle Rat's consent", uh-huh
"Not without Uncle Rat's consent"
"Would I marry the President," uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

Uncle Rat, he went downtown, uh-huh
Uncle Rat, he went downtown, uh-huh
Uncle Rat, he went downtown
To buy his niece a wedding gown, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

Where shall the wedding supper be? uh-huh
Where shall the wedding supper be? uh-huh
Where shall the wedding supper be?
Way down yonder in the hollow tree, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

The first to come in was a bumble bee, uh-huh
The first to come in was a bumble bee, uh-huh
The first to come in was a bumble bee
With a big bass fiddle on his knee, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

Next to come in was the big black snake, uh-huh
Next to come in was the big black snake, uh-huh
Next to come in was the big black snake
He gobbled down the wedding cake, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

Little bit of biscuit on the shelf, uh-huh
Little bit of biscuit on the shelf, uh-huh
Little bit of biscuit on the shelf
If you want anymore you can sing it yourself, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

Have you been doing Waldorf-inspired learning at your home this year?

If so, please leave a comment below to share your experiences!

 

Disclosure:
Some item links in this post are affiliate links. I will make a small amount of money if you click on them and make a purchase. All opinions expressed, however, are 100% my own.
Maureen

November 17, 2014

DIY Tutorial - Thanksgiving Peg Dolls

Even though I am a Thanksgiving cynic, I wanted to make something for our seasonal table to differentiate November from the rest of autumn. I’ve been wanting to craft with wood more and peg dolls are an easy and cheap way to do that.
DIY Tutorial - Thanksgiving Peg Dolls | From Blue Bells and Cockle Shells
I spent a lot of time on Pinterest trying to come up with peg doll designs that were within my capabilities (seriously, how some people manage to get so much fine detail on to tiny peg dolls, is beyond me!). This wood burning tutorial has been the only post that I’ve read that has helped me learn to physically control a wood burning pen. Before reading this post, I kept trying to find the skinniest tips possible and then the tips would melt or warp when I tried to burn designs into my peg dolls.

Step 1 - I drew the designs on two unfinished peg dolls with a pencil first after getting a vague idea of how I wanted my dolls to look. This was a revealing process in itself. Ideas I had in my mind weren’t necessarily doable. You really have to think in positive/negative space mode, as each part of the doll has to connect to rest of the doll, 360 degrees away.DIY Tutorial - Thanksgiving Peg Dolls | From Blue Bells and Cockle Shells
Step 2 - Once I had my design done, I used my wood burning pen to burn over the pencil marks. At times, the wood grain forced the woo burning pen to move in ways other than my original design called for. I finally decided that is what pencil erasers are for!DIY Tutorial - Thanksgiving Peg Dolls | From Blue Bells and Cockle Shells
Step 3 - I painted the dolls with our Stockmar opaque paints starting with the lightest colors of paint first. I did this because I seemed to faintly recall someone saying that was the way things should be done. It did work well, as it is easier to paint over lighter color mistakes than darker ones.DIY Tutorial - Thanksgiving Peg Dolls | From Blue Bells and Cockle Shells
Step 4 - I polished and buffed the dolls with a rag and beeswax polishDIY Tutorial - Thanksgiving Peg Dolls | From Blue Bells and Cockle Shells
Step 5 - I used a fine tip pen to draw some basic facial features. In the past, I have used colored pencils and I think those actually look better, but I wanted to experiment.

Have you tried your hand at making peg dolls? They seem to be a bit of the rage on Pinterest right now. I’m now working on some Christmas peg dolls. I find the biggest challenge is getting the heads right if I don’t want to have to put a hat on the doll (like try making Santa Lucia without making a seperate candle ring to place on her head, it looks really funky!).

Disclosure: Some item links in this post are affiliate links. I will make a small amount of money if you click on them and make a purchase. All opinions expressed, however, are 100% my own.
Maureen

November 12, 2014

Waldorf Inspired Kindergarten Homeschool - Lesson Plan for Week of November 17

Waldorf Inspired Kindergarten Homeschool - Lesson Plan for Week of November 17 | From Blue Bells and Cockle Shells

Did your homeschooling go well this week?

We all came down with a cold, but timing-wise, it worked out well, as we didn’t have to cancel anything crucial. It is always nice when we can just be sick and focus on getting well and not worry about other commitments.
Next week will be the last week we that we homeschool until after Thanksgiving, as we always take the whole week of Thanksgiving off.

Lesson Plan for Week of November 17

  • Nursery Rhyme - For Want of a Nail
For want of a nail the shoe was lost.
For want of a shoe the horse was lost.
For want of a horse the rider was lost.
For want of a rider the message was lost.
For want of a message the battle was lost.
For want of a battle the kingdom was lost.
And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.
  • Seasonal Poem – Thanksgiving Poem
The year has turned its circle,
The seasons come and go.
The harvest all is gathered in
And chilly north winds blow.
Orchards have shared their treasures,
The fields, their yellow grain,
So open wide the doorway
Thanksgiving comes again!
~ Author Unknown

Have you been doing Waldorf-inspired learning at your home this year?

If so, please leave a comment below to share your experiences!

Disclosure:
Some item links in this post are affiliate links. I will make a small amount of money if you click on them and make a purchase. All opinions expressed, however, are 100% my own.
Maureen

November 11, 2014

Our Favorite Picture Books for Thanksgiving

Our Favorite Picture Books for Thanksgiving | From Blue Bells and Cockle ShellsLast Christmas, I started posting about our seasonal and holiday book baskets.

Today, I am happy to to be completing the series by sharing our Thanksgiving book basket. As I have mentioned in the past, I have very mixed feelings about Thanksgiving, as a holiday. I have problems with celebrating a holiday that is founded on false history that, in reality, nearly resulted in genocide of a race that, to this day, suffers from the “white man’s arrival”. Also, though I do not, in the slightest, begrudge anyone eating turkey, I find it hard to read books that celebrate or mock the killing of turkeys, though one book on this list does celebrate the turkey’s relief at finding himself not on the menu.
Despite all of this, I’ve come to accept Thanksgiving as a holiday to celebrate for the many things in my life that I am thankful for. The books that I have chosen reflect that view point, so they are a small collection.
Our other seasonal and holiday book baskets have a much greater selection of books. I have linked to them all in my drop-down menu bar above, but in case your are reading this post from somewhere without access to the menu bar, I’ll link to them all here also.

Our Holiday Book Baskets

Our Seasonal Book Baskets

Do you have any favorite picture books for Thanksgiving?

Disclosure: Some item links in this post are affiliate links. I will make a small amount of money if you click on them and make a purchase. All opinions expressed, however, are 100% my own.
Maureen