Wednesday, November 5, 2008

homeschooling the harvest

i found an awesome series of books at the library called 'we celebrate'...there are a lot of the general holidays, i skipped those, but the other ones are great...winter, spring, harvest, family days. they are full of rich lore and celebrations, poems, songs, activities and great pictures. i've been using the harvest one all week and will into thanksgiving to celebrate the harvest. i wish i'd found it sooner as the harvest celebrations in the book started back in september. but, we are having fun with it anyway. we made a moon rabbit and moon toad to celebrate the harvest moon festival (chinese).

we've been using the harvest poem that sasha posted on her blog:


Now all the farmers from far and wide

Have gathered their bounty of countryside:

Corn and barley from field and wold

Honey from beehive and wool from the fold,

Fruit from the orchard all ripe, red and gold,

Log for the fire to keep out the cold.

~Dorothy Hancock

this poem has been read every day and i stapled together a few scraps of paper to make an activity book for jaden. on the cover, i wrote 'harvest' in block letters which she colored. inside, i have 3 pages with the 3 words we used for vocabulary words for the weed (bounty, wold, fold). i had her draw a picture on each page to represent the meaning. then, we came up with a word for each letter of harvest (for example, H-helping hands, A-apples). it took us a few days to complete and was a load of fun, plus it helped her learn some new words. i think i'll try it with each new theme we do if she's interested.

once thanksgiving is past, we'll delve into the winter book.

lots of counting has been going on...she's stuck at 9..she skips 10. it will come with time. she helps with setting the table, taking the chick back outside in the morning (to protect her from the weasel, we bring her inside at night), she cooks, picks up toys, helps fold, sort and hang laundry out. plus, we work on writing letters, play with clay, make things, work in the garden, & play outside. i ^started growing eyes on potatoes xpos^started growing eyes on potatoes her to a lot of spanish (muzzy, computer cd-rom program, dora). sometimes i think i'm starting too soon but kids are taught some of this in preschool plus, i don't want to have a completely unstructured 6 years & then wham! it's time to start schooling!---surprise!!

i am so torn between classical education formats and waldorf. i like them both. sometimes, i feel like i'm trying to cram too much into the day. i try to stick to mostly waldorf but she's so eager to read and do worksheets and write that i feel i owe it to her.

i've tried to start doing one on one with sage. that went over like a lead balloon with jaden. how do mothers juggle preschooling 2 and 4 year olds??!


Gina said...

O, I love the rabbit and toad! I am going to see if my library has these books.

I tell you, I really wish I could homeschool right now. I do what I can when I am home, but it seems like I am just tacking on stuff to Shawnee's kindergarten cir. Lyndon I think will be easier to homeschool (shawnee is such a people kid and seems to do better with a school-type structure. He has learned far more than what I tried to teach him, but then I don't know if my teaching perhaps helped him catch on easier...)

I like the Waldrof too and we havea Montossori school here that centers their circ. around ecology, nature and agriculture(sustainable. originally, I planned to send Shawnee there, but we just couldn't afford it. They have a great campus (an old farm) and do many of their lessons outdoors. I would love to copy that sort of learning.

tansy said...

the books are great...i wish they had a summer one. but, they cover most months of the year.

i hope you're able to homeschool soon! i tried supplementing my older kids for awhile but it seems so unfair...they usually had a couple hours of homework after school so they weren't getting any free time at all between that and chores. i still try to teach them practical skills as much as possible.

that school sounds they have a website? i'd love to read more about them.

Gina said...

They do:

It's in Avilla, IN which is a county away from us.

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