Friday, November 6, 2009

Word Turkeys

The 6 year old and I have been working on nouns, verbs, and adjectives for the past few weeks, and I have been struggling to come up with new and interesting ways for him to absorb this knowledge. So, while I was browsing the (FREE) Super Teacher Worksheets website, I came across a cool turkey template that I thought would be perfect!

I'm not sure what this worksheet was originally meant for, but I have tailored it for our own purposes.

I printed out 3 pages. 1 for noun, verb, and adjective. Then, I re-wrote the existing instructions (cut BEFORE coloring?? Really? I don't think so.) and had my son fill in holiday related words. We are doing 1 turkey a week and displaying them as Thanksgiving decorations. Pretty sweet, huh??

This is a great example of what I love most about homeschooling - the flexibility to find my own creative ways to demonstrate a topic.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Failed Experiments...

As I mentioned previously, I purchased a Pandia Press Chemistry E-book awhile back. I have to admit that, up until today, we have enjoyed the content of this curriculum. BUT....my face and hands are currently covered in lemon extract, and that makes me irritated.

The experiment we did today discussed atoms, and the instructions involved pouring almond extract, lemon extract, water, and cinnamon in to separate balloons and then inflating them. The point is to determine whether the scent molecules are small enough to pass through the balloon atoms. Sounds pretty straightforward, yes??

Umm. No.

First of all, I don't think the editors actually tested all of these experiments prior to putting them in the book. If they had, they would have clearly stated that you need an eye dropper (rather than a 1/2 teaspoon measuring spoon) to fill the balloons. Because, it is important not to get any scent on the outside of the balloon and that is IMPOSSIBLE when you are using a spoon-shaped device to pour liquid into the rubbery, cylindrical-ish neck of teeny-tiny balloon.

Secondly, they explicitly state that you are to use balloons that have never been inflated. WHAT?? I think we have all had near-aneurysms from trying to blow up brand new balloons....so, try that with potent-fumed extract in the bottom. GACK!! And then, while trying not to burst a vessel in my eyeball, the lemon extract balloon EXPLODED all over my face. Many expletives later, I decided that 1 balloon with scent in it was more than enough to complete the experiment.

Technically, the experiment wasn't a failure because my son learned what he was supposed to learn, but he also learned some new and colorful language to share with his sailor buddies. I may need to do practice runs on these experiments the night before we do our lessons. I had a really tough time today, and now I'm a lemon-scented grump. :(