A Homeschooler’s Review of the Book Painting and Drawing in Waldorf Schools

How we are using the book Painting and Drawing in Waldorf Schools to teach art in our homeschool. My daughter and I just started her sixth grade year of homeschooling. One of my favorite aspects of this year for our family is the introduction to charcoal in art. An interesting part of Waldorf pedagogy is…

Botany: Rate of Photosynthesis Experiment

In the experiment, the rate of photosynthesis is explored. This is a fun experiment, because the first time a little leaf disc rises to the surface there is so much excitement. What is being observed is the rate of photosynthesis determined by how much oxygen is being produced. When enough oxygen has been produced in…

Grade 5 Botany: Root Observation Lab

This has been one of most cool projects of our botany block. In this lab, we used a polymer from Miracle Grow, promoted as water crystals, as a germination and growth medium. These polymers are marketed at hydration crystals that help keep soil from getting too moist or too dry. They do this because they…

Grade 5 Freehand Waldorf Geometry: Ellipse Exercise

We’ve been working on our freehand Waldorf Geometry block the last couple of weeks. Check my Geometry highlights on Instagram  for more.  We are using pushpins as string to first draw a circle from the center, and then moving the focus outward from the circle to see the changes in the circle.  It’s a cool exercise just by…

Artist of the 1800’s and 1900’s

We do not usually do artist study separate from our regular studies. With our intertwining of Charlotte Mason (CM) and Waldorf, artist study is usually incorporated into a short CM-style lessons themed to accommodate our main lesson. Since we do history chronologically, this means most of our artists have reflected what we were studying in…

Grade 5 Botany: Dissection of a Flower

One of the activities that we did last week for our botany block was to dissect a flower and find all its parts. We looked at some of those parts under the microscope. As it was spring here in North Florida, we took a little walk around our yard and picked some flowers. Most of…

Botany (Grade 5): Celery Stalk Demonstration of the Vascular System

Matching scientific demonstrations accurately to the explanation of their concepts is important to me. Science is cool, fascinating, and amazing! But even more amazing is scientific literacy and why these demonstrations work the way that they do. It’s essential to match those concepts with clear, accurate concrete examples.  Dying the leaves of celery or carnations is…

Grade 5 Physics: Magnets

This was the section of our physics block I was most uncertain about. I did not have a clear plan for this one. We did not spend much time in her early years exploring magnets, so my plan was to play and wing it. I did prepare however by going over the material on magnets…

African Holocaust Block

Because the African Holocaust is a heavy one, I knew that I wanted to sandwich it in-between some ‘good stuff.’ I decided to do this by first exploring the continent of Africa and ending on the accomplishments and achievements of a few African-decent people. This block is a fifth grade history block. Before I continue…

Grade 5 Physics: Waves

We are doing a three-week study on physics, as mentioned in the previous physics blog. I plan on spending a couple of days on each concept. The plan is below. There is a previous post on our introduction to energy, force, and momentum and simple machines.  Introduce Energy, Force, and Momentum 2 days Simple Machines…

Grade 5 Physics: Energy, Force, and Simple Machines

Currently we are in a physics block with my younger daughter (fifth grade.) It is an introduction, because I didn’t feel like I gave it enough attention in years past. Physics has so much one can delve into, that I had a challenging time deciding what to include and what to leave out. So far,…

Fourth Grade Year in Review

This was such a fun video to make. I had just finished looking through the kids portfolios in preparation for their annual evaluation, and then looked through photographs of the year to add to the video. Looking back at the year allows for me to see how much we have accomplished in the last year….

Making Mushroom Spore Prints

We love to go mushroom hunting. Our mushroom hunts are for spore prints. We do NOT eat our mushrooms. I wish I knew which ‘shrooms were edible and which were not, but alas… Goals!  Spore prints are a favorite around here. I do not know how I made it all the way through my college…

Planning our Fifth-grade Freehand Geometry Block

I’m planning my daughter’s fifth grade year for next year, and I’ve gotten distracted by her free-hand geometry unit. Why do I say distracted? Well, that is currently scheduled as the last block of the year with 10, yes I said 10, previous block in front of it. But really, who can blame me?! Waldorf…

My Favorite Educational Apps

The homeschool world abounds with opinions on electronics. Some think that electronics should be limited, while others think that electronics should be embraced.  My family falls somewhere in between. We do limit our screen time at my house to encourage and promote outdoor  (and indoor) play, but I do use them for educational purposes occasionally, especially on…

“Notice and Wonder” with Cuisenaire Rods for Homeschool Math

Today for math we did one of my favorite activities, though I will admit, it is not always my children’s favorite. My daughter, now 10, build a structure with the Cuisinaire Rods, and then we did a “notice and wonder” activity. The structure that she build for today was a pyramid. I could have guessed…

Comparing Rods for Fractional Relationships

In this activity we are comparing each rod to each of the others to see the fractional relationship. It looks overwhelming, but it’s not. The first couple of rows or columns are the most challenging and after a pattern emerges, and it becomes much easier.  Having said that, this comparison did take us three to four…

Turtle Tessellation Tiles and Pentagon Spirals

We are finished with our homeschooling year. Well…almost.  We didn’t get to math this year, and so as we shift our focus to more fun, and a less strictly academic theme to our schooling (because who are we kidding? Homeschooling is a lifestyle; there really is no “summer break,”) we will be doing our math…

Master Gallery-Exposure to Impressionism

I try to pair music, art, and literature with history. The reasoning is that perhaps this pairing will give them a reference, a framework, if you will, to how the art developed and existed in context. That is my hope anyway.  A mother can dream. In history this session we studied Story of the World…

Easter pH play

This Easter I had the lofty goal of dying eggs with food, using beets for pink, turmeric for yellow, and red cabbage for blue. Like many things, my kids had different ideas, thus we did not dye eggs.  That didn’t stop us from having lots of fun with colors. I took the cabbage juice to…