We have been busy here and I thought I would tell you all about it!
Our beautiful grade 6 second edition is finally finished and in our store! This has been a long time in the making and we finally got it off to the publisher today. It feels so good! You can have a hard copy HERE or a digital copy HERE.
Would you like to see a sample? We can do that too! SAMPLE PDF
Would you like to completely change the way you plan and be successfull instead of stressed out with this homeschooling thing? This journal is it! I have over a decade of planning under my belt. I have done this longer and with more kids than anyone else out there. This planner takes you through ever step I take each year with my kids. It is a planning journal that does so much more than help you plan your schooling! It helps you plan your life! You can get a hard copy HERE.
And last but certainly not least, we have this new book available from our publisher in hard copy HERE.
This is just a taste! We have so much more coming this year! Circle time resources, new Mom Lessons, better festival and music resources and MUCH more!
The nature table is such an awesome way to augment more learning at home – learning that is outside of our regular lesson blocks. The nature table should be a reflection of what is going on around us outside when ever possible. A while back we spent all year using what we were reading and activities we were doing to build up our nature table, it was a fun way for my kids to really think about and build up going to the fair or reading the Apple Cake book, the nature table became an extension of that and in turn a deeper lesson for them all, not just our youngest that I was aiming my attention to.
It’s not secret that we live near the beach. It is a family goal that we turned into a reality in the fall of 2016. Moving here meant that we had a whole new eco-system to explore. It is much different than living in the middle of San Diego. The sea breeze is down right cold and we have gone from knitting with cotton back to wool (I am in no way complaining!) and we have been eager to explore everything we have here. Being the Waldorf homeschoolers that we are, I wanted to bring as many stories into our learning as possible so I set out to find books in our home library as well as books we didn’t have to bring more life to our studies. It is so much more fun than me looking things up on my phone!
Super Sam is in grade four this year and will be starting the Human Being and Animal block in a few weeks. I thought this would be a great way to whet his appetite for the animal kingdom. We started with The Burgess Seashore Book. While it is focused on the shores that are in the north east part of the United States, the animals discussed are often the same or close enough that it gives us plenty of room to explore. Each night I have been reading a chapter before they go to bed. (For my families struggling with bedtime – their teeth are brushed, all last minute potty and water stops have been made, they are in the bed, under the covers listening.) Each night the characters of the book (Greywing the Gull, Reddy the Fox, Jimmy the Skunk, Danny Meadow Mouse and more!) come alive and talk about all sorts of animals found at the seashore aka our backyard. We live three short blocks from the beach and we are there nearly everyday. This book has given us a good outlet for the unending “what is this?” questions that come from both Sam (10.5 yo) and Sariah (5.5 yo). On our weekly trip HERE, I found the lovely book, A San Diego Guide to Sea Shells. It has been immensely helpful in identifying all the different shells we bring home on our almost daily excursions to the tide pools. The book On the Beach is a great lift the flap book helping Sariah bridge the gap with her speech struggles and By the Seashore gives them another resource as well. We are saving Seabird and Pagoo for Sam’s lesson block in a few weeks.
Do I worry about Sariah being too heady with all the facts? No. The stories in The Burgess Seashore Book are informative but in a story like manner, they are very gentle like Thornton Burgess other works. It gives her just enough vocabulary to be able to tell you that while that sea anemone might look like a plant, it could sting you if you touch it so be safe! It is actually an animal. It helps her to understand just why hermit crabs steal shells and why on earth we can never find a bean clam still in tact. It also helps her to know why we can bring things home in a jar for a sleep over but they have to go back the next day and why Daddy can’t put a sea snail in his pocket.
The nature table has become an extension of our studies. Sariah’s group of wooden animals has grown and she is very much in love with all things relating to the sea. With each chapter of the book she is finding something else in her stash to include on the table and hunting for even more shells to keep it pretty.
So where do you live? I encourage you to get outside and have fun with nature and explore things together. This is where real learning begins. You don’t have to confine things to a lesson block and you don’t have to wait on a subject that is in your backyard because it isn’t your child’s grade. Steiner believed we should have a good understanding of the world around us. While we don’t have to explore all the scientific names for things, we can have fun with common names, knowing what they eat and when we might seen them in our yard or area. Look for fun books with simple explanations for your young child. Thornton Burgess gives us a way to bridge the gap for children of ages 4 to easily 10 or 12+. You can find a list of his books HERE, maybe there will be something perfect for your neck of the woods!
Have book ideas to share with our readers about nature? Pop them in the comments below!
PS. Have science requirements you need to meet for your homeschool charter or government agency? This is a perfect, Waldorf friendly way to do it!
With all of the girls in our house getting short hair cuts, I have been knitting up plenty of hats! This one was for Sariah. I really thought when I moved to San Diego that my wool days would be numbered, but what I have found since we moved near the water is that my head gets cold very easily and I know if mine is cold then Sariah’s is too!
If you know me well, you know I have a love affair of sorts with Malabrigo yarn. I have about 8 skeins in my stash right now waiting patiently for me to finish other projects so I can play with them! I used some Malabrigo worsted for this hat in the Box O 316 colorway. To me (and Sariah) it looked just like what a unicorn might knit if she could knit This hat was really meant for Elleanor to knit, but Sariah was very persistent so I got busy.
The pattern is a free one, sizes infact to adult (Erik has one of these coming soon!) it is called Be Loving