Saturday, March 28, 2015

Artist Study: Paul Klee

 In March we learned about Paul Klee.
 We read the usual biography as well as The Cat and the Bird, which is a story based on his paintings.  The Dreaming Pictures book talks about different pieces he did.

 We had a lot of fun trying out different projects!  This one from Art Projects for Kids is based on this painting.

 The next week we tried another one from the same blog based on this picture.

 Alice's final picture!

 I found this book at the library (and had to return it early, so please excuse the poor picture!) and used it for a Klee project--it does have projects for lots of other artists, too!

 First we drew a simple face on the paper, outlined it, and covered it with wet tissue paper.

 The project was based on this Klee painting.

 I'm not sure if it's the tissue paper we used (though I checked and it didn't say anything about it being color fast) or the paper, but there wasn't much color transfer!

 We finished the month with this project based on Klee's Harmony paintings.

If you're looking for an artist to start with, Klee would be a great one!  We enjoyed all of the books and projects we tried!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Happy Birthday, Hobo!

It's hard to believe that it was six months ago that this puppy showed up.
The kids decided that we would celebrate his birthday on March 23, which we later found out was Puppy Day, so that worked out well!
Yesterday on his birthday he got a new collar and a smiley squeak toy.  I will admit that I only bought the toy because I thought it would be really funny looking, but he really enjoys it--though I'm not sure he's ever actually held it in his mouth like it's pictured on the packaging.  (Also, don't order this from Amazon.  We picked Hobo's up at Walmart for about $3.)
We celebrated today with a bone cake.

Our neighbors--the very, very nice ones who are letting Hobo stay in their kennel--came over for dinner.
They even brought him a present!

Honestly, having a dog is a huge pain right now, but he is so good natured and the kids love him so much that I am glad we have him!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Spring (Break) Week

 Last week the public schools were out on spring break.  We kept on mostly as usual, but we had some extra fun, too, like going to the park.

 Happy St. Patrick's Day!

 We had our traditional rainbow jello...

...and mint shakes!
 In school we did an archaeology dig.
 We also did another Paul Klee project for art.

 Alice used her giant number line to work on adding bigger numbers.

 Friday we took a tour of the Blue Bell factory!

 At the end of the tour we got samples.  Both of the kids picked Blue Monster!

Since Alice conquered her first books, she has been practicing them over and over for everyone!

Friday, March 20, 2015

Alice Reads Her First Books!

 We've been working on word families and today Alice took the next step and read her first books!

 She read them for Jack, too.

She practiced and practiced and by the time Jay got home, she was doing a great job!

She is very excited, so I'm going to try to pick up the pace a little to see if that excitement will carry her a little farther!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Artist Study: Marc Chagall

 In February we learned about Marc Chagall.  Between the flu and computer issues, my bulletin board never was completely finished, but we did have a good time!

 There are lots of good children's books on Chagall.  Marc Chagall: Life is a Dream shows his paintings and talks about them individually, so it is a really nice one for lessons on particular pieces (like the last one pictured here).  Look! Really Smart Art is a neat book I found that shows how different artists use different techniques to trick the viewer's eye.

 I didn't make a note of the lessons I used, but they all came from my Artists board on Pinterest.

 I just realized Jack didn't get around to painting his background.  Did I mention how rough February was?  We're lucky we got this far!

One week we focused on I and the Village using the book I mentioned above and a lesson plan from Pinterest.  I think these turned out really nicely!

Now we're on to Paul Klee!

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Festival of Words

 Today we went to the Festival of Words, which is put on every other year by our library system to honor a Native American author.  This year the award was given to Joseph Bruchac.  We just finished up one of his novels, Skeleton Man, this week.

 Before the award was given, Will Hill told some stories.

 If you ever get the chance to hear him, you should definitely go.  He is really entertaining!

 Then they presented the award.

 We got some books signed, too.  We actually already had some books signed by him that we got when we went to the Five Civilized Tribes Museum.

 The kids really liked the Indian Tacos when we went to the Native American Festival last fall, so we had them again.

 They had some different crafts the kids could do.

We also saw the Creek Fiddle Dancers, which were unlike any Indian dancers I've ever seen before.  If I understood the man right (it was kind of noisy), this type of dancing originated from contact the tribe had with Scottish immigrants in the 1700s.  It was commonly done until the 1980s, when it kind of died out, but they have been trying to revive it.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

World Read Aloud Day

Today is World Read Aloud Day, and as you can see, we've been at it a while.  We read during the day, listen to books in the car, and read at bedtime; it's one of my favorite things about the day.  Growing up, my favorite memories of elementary school are of my teachers reading aloud, especially in second and fifth grade, and when I was in the classroom I always looked forward to that time of the day the most.  

Right now I'm working my way through the podcasts on the Read Aloud Revival (and I've even figured out how to listen to them on my phone, which is quite a technological step for me!), and I have really enjoyed them.  If you don't read aloud with your kids, pick up a book and start tomorrow--if you live around here it's a snow day, so you have the time.  A few we've read since Christmas:

The Melendy Quartet--some of my most favorite ever

Alice is also really into Nancy Drew and the Clue Crew right now--maybe not the most intellectual series, but since I devoured the original Nancy Drew series and am looking forward to re-reading them with her in a few years, I'm not going to complain.

Happy reading!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Tasty Traditions

 In case you haven't noticed, we like food around here.  And we also like traditions.  This week we got to combine the two!

 Today we went to IHOP for pancake day, which we've been doing for about seven years.  (Sorry for the separate pictures of the kids, but it turns out IHOP has a little trouble seating 12 people together if you come in right at the lunch hour rush.)

Yesterday we made special green eggs snacks for Dr. Seuss's birthday--and they looked much cuter than the actual green eggs and ham we made before.

We've also been doing some colonial cooking this week I will share with you soon!