Saturday, December 26, 2009

More School Plans..

While we wait for the wagons to leave for Westward Ho! we're going to be doing a month long ocean study. This is something that we've been considering for a while, and by "we" I mean Super Math Bear and I. (There's nothing like a bear with leotards on to help you make the proper choices in teaching your children, right?) Mr Scarecrow was in agreement, and even Buster put his own .02 in. Our dog knows the word "beach" and upon hearing the word at our "ever so secret meeting" he followed me around for the next hour in complete anticipation. Anyway, the idea was/is that because we live directly across the street from the ocean we wanted to take the time to explore it. We tend to spend a lot of time down there in the summer, and I thought that I'd put a slightly educational twist on it.

The books we're hoping to enjoy are:
  • One Small Square Seashore: This book is loaded with information, ideas, hands on projects and more. While it is written based on an American seashore most of the information inside is applicable for any seashore!
  • The Seaweed Book: How to Find and Have Fun With Seaweed: This fun book will help them identify seaweed and show them how to preserve it and make various crafts with it. We enjoy inspecting seaweed (sometimes things wash ashore tangled in it) and it will be neat for them to learn to identify each kind.
  • I Wonder Why The Sea Is Salty: The books in this series have lots of questions people ask about various subjects and then the answers are included as well. The boys really love these books, and we're looking forward to reading this one!
  • Awesome Ocean Science: we're still waiting on this book, but what we've seen from afar looks awesome. The idea is that they not only discuss the ocean, but that there are also hands on application and experimental ways for the kids to learn the concepts behind the scientific information.
  • Ocean Giants: We've used various math books in this series and the boys love them. As you read the book you take on the roll of a person who works in the ocean (or a zoo, or an astronaut, etc.) and then you have to solve various math problems in order to do your job. Morgan never wants to stop when it comes to these books.
  • DK Guide To The Oceans: we'll be using this one mostly for reference information, but we really do enjoy the DK books, all though I will warn you and say that some of them have references to evolution.
  • Artistic Nature Unit Studies: Sea Mammals: this is something I picked up during CurrClick's Black Friday sale knowing we had a sea adventure ahead of us. It's a 76 page magazine that is loaded with information. Jayden will especially love the whale info inside.
  • Water Horse: this book is NOTHING like the movie. Don't get me wrong, we enjoyed the movie, but honestly about the only thing they have in common is their title. We listened to this book a while back and really enjoyed it. I think we'll dust our copy off and have another listen.

We will also combine one or more of the following lapbooks in our studies:

We're still forming plans as we go here, but on top of general exploration and fun at the beach we're also looking at:

  • Watching the tide and graphing it. We use a tide clock around here to know when we can go to the beach. So we'll graph the hours between tides as well as the water level. We'll have a nifty math lesson to go along with that science!
  • Crab Watching. Each day when the tide goes out the crabs are washed ashore and they scramble like mad to bury themselves before the seagulls snatch them up. It's AMAZING to watch them dig holes and hurry and bustle along. So we'll spend time watching them and perhaps drawing pictures in our journals or snapping photos.. We might read about crabs while we watch them.
  • Tidal Pool Exploring: the idea might be to assign each child to their own pool and let them investigate it to their hearts content. We've found so many things in tidal pools in the past from Hermit Crabs down to Star Fish.
We've also got a few fun crafts and such up our sleeves that we'll be trying out. The biggest goal is to keep it fun and simple and to do most of our work on the beach. We're looking forward to a fun filled January!

1 comment:

Diane said...

We are also about to start a unit on oceans. We are using a lapbook from Hands of a Child and supplementing with other books. But we do not have an ocean close to visit like you do.