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…

“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…

Wax Resist Naturally Dyed Eggs

Dying eggs is just so gratifying, especially with natural dyes. When my children were young, it was overwhelming to use natural dyes and the best that I could do was a kit. As they have gotten older though, I am able to spend the time making the dyes, usually the night before. This year was…

An Inside Look into our Homeschool Math Journal

Some homeschoolers keep a common place book. Some homeschoolers keep a language arts book. We keep a Math Journal. Because I’m not teaching math from a curriculum, keeping a math journal helps us to keep track of where we have been and thus where we are going. When we are stuck on a challenge, we…

Renaissance Unit

Renaissance art is some of my favorite art. I don’t know if it’s the depth of color or the intensity of the scenes, but I find it fascinating. The artists that created them are also fascinating. This has been one of our many history units this semester. And just in case you noticed that Shakespeare…

Finding Perfect Numbers

Yesterday’s was all about Perfect number. It’s not how pretty the number is, or how well you like its form. It’s not even about if the number is your favorite. Perfect numbers have a distinct definition. A perfect number is a number whose factors (not including the number itself) add to give the number itself….

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…

Explorers of the World History Unit

This year in history we have come to the dreaded “Age of Discovery,” which is a misnomer, because all these European explorers really “discovered” nothing at all. These places were already inhabited and well-established, sometimes with populations even greater than any in Europe at the time. A better name for this time period might be…

Homeschool Rhythms and Rituals

It’s afternoon.  We’ve just finished lunch and are clearing the table. My daughter goes to get a piece of chocolate, her daily treat after she finishes her lunch. I reach over and give her a hug and look into her eyes. “Are you ready for school?” “Sure.” “Want some tea today?” “Yes, please. Can I…

Games – Late Elementary

THIS IS A 4-PART BLOG SERIES ON GAMES. IT INCLUDES GAMES FOR PRESCHOOLERS, EARLY ELEMENTARY, LATER ELEMENTARY, MIDDLE SCHOOL AND HIGH SCHOOL.  THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS THAT WILL HELP YOU FIND THE GAME EASILY. These are my favorite games suitable for late elementary. I really like to have games that cover a range of…

Golden Age of Islam (Middle Ages) Resources and Activities

Ramadan Mubarak! Though we are not Muslim, we have several friends and followers that are. I am saddened that they have to celebrate their holy month in the middle of the Corona pandemic.  In honor of the month of Ramadan I’ve compiled our resources and activities for the Golden Age of Islam Unit that we…

A Little Geography with your Valentine Exchange?

For the last few years we’ve participated, and this year hosting, a valentine exchange through social media. You can find exchange groups on Facebook.  We’ve used this as a fun geography lesson.  We take the valentine stamps and sometimes stickers, cut them out and tape them on our map. We color in the states that…

Patterns in the Multiplication Chart

  *A note about the numbers.  In this piece to try to keep things clear, when I speak of the multiples or a particular number, I am writing the numeric symbol for the number i.e. “9.” If I am not talking about the number but describing an amount, I am spelling it out i.e. “three…

Native American Inspired Beading Tutorial

  I had some requests on instructions for the beadwork that my children did for our Native American studies. This activity can lend itself to a variety of ages. Some things to consider when choosing what materials might be appropriate for your child:   The size of the loom. The size of the string and…

Using nesting shapes when playing with math

Nesting shapes are a fun, visual way to explore shapes and math.  In addition they lend themselves to flexibility of ages and a variety of mathematical concepts.  I’ve written a short tutorial in making them.   First take a piece of cardstock 8 ½ by 11 and mark 1 inch strips lengthwise. Cut out those…

Sumi-e for Japan

This year we have been doing a “travel buddies” geography for my youngest who is doing kindergarten, mostly because she doesn’t want to be left out of “school” and needed something like her brother. It has been so much fun.  We were approaching Japan, when I had a spark of inspiration. Scrolling through my instagram…

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…

Body Systems through Art

Last fall a homeschooling friend and I made a trade.  I taught her children biology; she taught mine Spanish. That trade has been one of the best things I’ve done. Not only did my children benefit from her native tongue, but her children were delightful to teach.  Biology became so much more fun with friends….