Saturday, 29 March 2014

Busy Bees

We spent a whole morning learning about bees yesterday.  We read this great book and learnt that honeybees eat nectar and turn it into honey in their stomach.  We also talked about the importance of bees and pollination, queen bees, nectar, pollen, hexagon cells in a bees nest, the head, abdomen, thorax, eyes and antennae of bees, lifespan and distances covered by honeybees in their search for flowers.

The elder two leant more in-depth facts about honeybees while Panda Girl painted a bee hive...

...and The Boy painted a rather large queen bee.

And we made this display with all their efforts

Monkey Girl's Honey Bee Garden seeds have sprouted

Panda Girl and The Boy made cute spring kites...

...and we made a fun pond to role-play with.

The Boy made this great Easter garden at nursery and is growing a courgette in a tube apparently!

We spent the afternoon transforming the patio into a water and sand play area.  Hooray for sunnier weather!

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Remembering Stravinsky with a Pillow Fight

This is how my Boy woke me this morning...

He's cute.  Which is lucky for both of us :)

He spent his penultimate day at nursery while the girls and I caught up on history, music study and faith work.

Our music study took us out of the Romantic Period and into the 20th and 21st Centuries.  Our first composer in this era is Igor Stravinsky who was fundamental in changing classical music in the 1900s.  We learnt that during the first playing of one of his pieces The Rite of Spring the audience were split on their appreciation or otherwise of his composition and fighting actually broke out in the concert hall..  To make this a memorable fact I suggested the girls have a pillow fight to recreate the riot that Stravinsky's music caused.  It was hilarious and fun and, I think, fairly memorable!

My favourite part of this fight was the girls yelling, "What is this music?" "I quite like it!"  "No, it's not for me!"  Had The Boy been there I think there would have been a whole lot more of crazy.

Having listened to Stravinsky's Rite of Spring the girls concluded that they preferred Vivaldi's Spring but also that they appreciated the depth and innovation of Stravinsky's music.

This afternoon saw Panda Girl at Tap and Modern classes and Ballet Girl at Sea Cadets.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Worm Investigation

The children prepared a square meter using string and sticks.

We brought the worms to the surface by soaking the grass in water.

And then they waited.

Eight worms indulged us and it was fascinating to watch them wriggle out of the ground.

Thank you worms!


...and wind socks.

The children have also spent the past week or so listening to story CDs.  Paddington Bear is hilarious.  Fact.

Panda Girl's spelling is coming on a treat.  Good girl!

Ballet Girl has is writing a story called Jerry Bungo

Monkey Girl reads at every possible opportunity.  This means things like brushing one's teeth and getting dressed are done e-x-t-r-a  s-l-o-w-l-y because she has her nose in a book.

The Boy is spending lots of time playing with his birthday gifts (bow and arrow, punch bag and boxing gloves, etc).  He is also excited as Mummy has booked him in to begin gymnastics lessons after Easter.  Hooray for energy-burning!

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

The Great Snail Race

The card nets of these bird boxes were quite intricate but worth the effort.  If only we could put them outside!

This morning was mostly about 'The Great Snail Race'.  The photos speak for themselves.  If only I had captured the hysteria it created.  Who knew that my son coaches snails by screeching?

Monday, 24 March 2014

Spring has Sprung!

I love Spring!  And I love Spring thematic units!  Last year's unit was cut short after the sudden and difficult death of my father and so this year's new seasonal unit is a bitter-sweet one.

The littlies hunted through their endless piles of cuddlies for lambs, chicks and rabbits and they spent some sweet time playing with them all.

We've done life-cycles on posters and paper and worksheets before but this year I wanted it to be more hands-on for my kinaesthetic one and my littlest.  I bought these fabulous life-cycle kits of a bullfrog, butterfly and ladybird and they went down a treat.

The two eldest went bird-watching this morning.  I bought an extra pair of binoculars and we dug out our bird book guides.

They started off in the field at the back of our house where we are often treated to the spectacular sight of red kites and buzzards soaring on the thermals or swooping into the field.

 The two younger kiddies collected small spring items from the garden and...

investigated them under our new microscope.  They were enthralled.  Pollen looks very cool close up!

Both reported back on their findings but all The Boy wanted to write down was, "we saw an ant".  Fair enough!

Then we swapped and the older two had fun with the microscope...

...and the younger two did some bird-watching.


Miniature spring gardens