Exploring Shapes with Spielgaben

Playful Learning with Spielgaben is our monthly post sharing Spielgaben in action!  If you missed the introduction to this series, you can see it here. We were given the Spielgaben set to review and are honored to have them as a blog sponsor.

Exploring Shapes with Spielgaben

 

Exploring Shapes

We have been using our Spielgaben set to explore shapes this month. As we continue on with a very loose 1st grade math plan, I choose concepts I want to expose her to before beginning a more formal math program in 2nd grade.

Math Manual, Part 3, Chapter 1 ~ Play 28: Let’s Make Shapes

Spielgaben Math Play 28 ShapesSpielgaben Math Play 28

 

We have obviously worked with shapes before, so this was an extension of what she already knew.  For this lesson she learned the word vertex and we made vocabulary cards to go along to reinforce our new words.

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Her other new word was quadrilateral, and we had fun making quadrilaterals together both with the balls and also the sticks.

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Math Manual, Part 3 Chapter 1 ~ Play 29: I Want to Be a TriangleSpielgaben Math Play 29

 

This was a neat lesson built into a fun game.  We used 3 dice each with 1-6 on them.  We organized the sticks in groups as shown below.

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We took turns rolling the dice and using the corresponding stick to build {or not build} a triangle, learning different things along the way – like the fact that you can’t build a triangle every time!

As we moved along she learned about an isosceles triangle!

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We also learned about an equilateral triangle!

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See more math fun we have had with Spielgaben!

Exploring-3D-Shapes-with-Spielgaben3[1] Exploring-Symmetry-with-Spielgaben22 Math-Play-with-Spielgaben---ideas-fo[1] Math-with-Spielgaben122 

Soma-Cube-with-Spielgaben22 Playful-Learning-with-Spielgaben-Sep Hands-on-Math-with-Spielgaben3_thumb Hands on 1st Grade Math with Spielgaben 

Multiplication-with-Spielgaben24622 Create-a-Clock-with-Spielgaben1012 Exploring-fractions-with-Spielgaben8[1] Exploring-Measurement-with-Spielgabe[1]

 

See version 4.0 here!

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Spielgaben offers a special discount to my readers, just send an email to [email protected] mentioning 1+1+1=1 and you will be provided with a discount coupon!



Gotta Go! Gotta Go! ~ A Monarch Butterfly Unit Study with Ivy Kids Kits

 Gotta Go Gotta Go Ivy Kids Kit Review - A Fun Way to Explore the Monarch Butterfly

{disclaimer ~ Ivy Kids is a blog sponsor and sent us a kit for this review}

We continue to be in love with Ivy Kids Kits. These are by far the best monthly subscription kits I have seen.

Not familiar with Ivy Kids Kits?

Ivy Kits are a monthly educational subscription for children ages 3-8 developed by early childhood teachers with children of their own. You can tell these kits were developed by people who truly know young kids.  The activities are awesome. Not only can you subscribe to a monthly kit, you can also buy past kits.

Each Ivy Kit contains instructions with ways to modify games to best suit each individual child and provide adults with questions to structure a child’s learning. There are enough games and materials in each kit to engage and cognitively stimulate a child throughout the month and can be replayed for years to come.

We were sent  “Gotta Go! Gotta Go! for this review.  Here’s ALL that was included in this kit:

  • The book Gotta Go! Gotta Go! by Sam Swope
  • Read along Bookmark: Use to assist with reading comprehension.
  • My Little Caterpillar: Use the brightly colored pom-poms, clothespins, and pipe cleaners to make cute little caterpillars. 
  • Butterfly Magnets: Transform your caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly. Create colorful butterfly wings by dripping water onto a colored filter. Clip the wings to the caterpillar and add a magnet to make a butterfly magnet.
  • Butterfly Life Cycle Wheel: Create a life cycle wheel with the 4 stages of the butterfly’s life.
  • Clay Model of the Butterfly Life Cycle: Use the clay to make models of each of the 4 stages of the life cycle: egg, caterpillar, chrysalis, and adult.
  • Butterfly Handprint or Footprint: Create a beautiful keepsake and decoration for your home with a butterfly made from your child’s handprints or footprints on a canvas board. 
  • My Monarch Butterfly: Learn interesting facts about monarch butterflies and examine a model to learn more about these beautiful insects. Use the model to help you draw all the parts of a monarch butterfly.
  • Mexi-Go! Board Game: Get your butterfly to Mexico for hibernation and then back home again to lay eggs as fast as you can.
  • Butterfly Symmetry: Use the pom-poms to make butterflies with symmetrical wings.
  • Hanging Butterfly: Use markers, pom-poms, and/or paint to decorate a 3-dimensional butterfly.  
  • My Butterfly Garden: Plant easy-to-grow wildflowers in your decorated planter. When the wildflowers bloom, they will attract beautiful butterflies.  
  • Save the Monarch Butterflies – Plant Milkweed: This month, Ivy Kids has made a donation to the Save Our Monarchs foundation to help preserve this beautiful butterfly. Save Our Monarchs has provided milkweed seeds for planting. Planting milkweed seeds outdoors can help increase the monarch butterfly population.
  • Caterpillar Patterns: Use the colored pom-poms to continue the pattern on the caterpillar’s body. 
  • Rhyming Wings – Matching Game:  Players take turns flipping over two butterfly wing cards. A pair is a match if the words on the two wings rhyme.

Activities From Our Box…

I showed her the book first and she immediately curled up to read it herself. We barely got the box open and she was snuggled up in the beanbag reading. Below she was reading it aloud to me.

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We began by planting wildflower seeds, which she completely LOVED!

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Our seeds grew quickly!  We don’t have flowers yet but they sprouted already and are growing!

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Mexi-Go was a fun and simple game included in the kit. She learned all about how the Monarch Butterfly migrates to Mexico and this fun game was a reinforcement of that!

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She loved creating the Life Cycle Wheel as we learned more about this through the awesome sheet that comes with the kit. You can see it on the table by her.

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I love her little clay model of the butterfly life cycle!

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She loves ANYthing artistic so drawing and labeling her on Monarch Butterfly was a big hit. She used the guide that came with the kit as well as the realistic butterfly {see it sitting on the table beside her}.

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Her completed butterfly!

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One of the best things about these kits is the organization. The clear instructions allowed me to leave activities for my mom to do with her while she was babysitting one day! 

The Butterfly Foot Print Craft looks like it was loads of fun and I love the finished product but am secretly glad my mom handled the mess of this one!!

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They also did the Butterfly Magnet craft together and it turned out beautifully and hangs on my fridge now!

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Her enthusiasm for these activities is through the roof, she loves her “box time” and begs me to do something from the box all the time! You can see ALL of the activities included in the box here!

We also loved our A House for Hermit Crab kit, and our Penguin & Pinecone Kit!

A House for Hermit Crab Unit Study with Ivy Kids Kit  Penguin-and-Pinecone-Unit-Study-with

 

20% off your first kit for NEW Subscribers to the monthly subscription kits!

Use code: IVY20

A huge thanks to Ivy Kids for sending us these kits to review. If you are looking for a simple way to do unit studies with your young child, I highly recommend Ivy Kids Kits!

When you subscribe to Ivy Kids, each month you will receive a very well organized kit containing a book and ten or more activities based upon the story. Everything you need to learn and play is included in your kit. I mean EVERYthing. These kits are incredible!



We Love Picture Smart Bible

This year for our Bible curriculum we chose to use Picture Smart Bible Old Testament K-3 with our younger two children. We want to continue on with this and move into the New Testament when we finish the Old.

{disclaimer ~ our affiliate link is used}

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Why We Like Picture Smart Bible…

PSB has worked for us because it is a simple overview of each book of the Bible. The script is simple and guides me as a teacher as the kids work on their pages.

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This isn’t an intense Bible study, it doesn’t take long and you create a really neat visual notebook for your child as you go along!

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My kids LOVE to flip back through their pages! The pages become a scrapbook of sorts and a simple visual reminder of the key themes in each book of the Bible.

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Evan-Moor Daily Summer Activities Book Review

Evan-Moor Daily Summer Activities

{disclaimer ~ Educents is a blog sponsor and provided Evan-Moor books for review}

Educents is the trusted resource for every child’s education. Whether you’re looking for curricula and science experiments, or tips and ideas, we hope we can help you discover new ways to make learning fun! logo-highres126

Click here to find innovative products and ideas created by a community of experts in education!

For years we have done a Summer Challenge with our kids as a way to keep them busy and help them have a chance to earn some extra money. As the years have passed, making the Summer Challenge simple has become more and more important. I found a way to simplify extensively this year thanks to our latest review item ~ Evan-Moor Daily Summer Activities Workbooks! We got the 4th into 5th book for our son and the 1st into 2nd book for our daughter.

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Once we got the books, I discussed it with my husband and together we decided how much we wanted to give our younger two children the potential to earn. We then divided that by the number of units in the workbook and taped money inside of the book! It’s extremely motivating to see your money staring at you!

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Our younger kids don’t get an allowance {mostly because we are not attentive enough to remember- we’ve tried}, so this is their main income earning opportunity from us! Here’s a video sharing more about the book and the system we are using!

The kids have already begun since they have each finished a few subjects for their current year. In their free time we allow them to work on these workbooks! So far the skills have been right on target for each of them, reviewing things I definitely want reviewed!

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Final Thoughts…

I definitely recommend the Evan-Moor Daily Summer Activities workbooks if you are looking for a simple way to keep your kids on track this summer with academic skills. Evan-Moor is one of my favorite publishers and these workbooks are visually appealing and cover a wide variety of skills. You can buy the 1st-2nd grade workbook here, or the 4th-5th workbook hereSee all Evan-Moor products on Educents here!



USA Geography Wrap-Up

USA Homeschool Geography with Elementary Students

We had a fun year with USA Geography in our homeschool and I thought I’d do a wrap-up post to share what we thought about how our year of learning went. When we began I wondered if we would make it through all 50 states and I am thrilled to say we DID!

My goal for my 4th grader was mastery of state locations and capitals with exposure to all of the other fun details. The goal for my 1st grader was entirely exposure. She will go through this again in 3rd or 4th grade with me.

We had lots of fun together usually about 2 days per week. Here’s a reference list with links to all materials we used this year with our 1st and 4th grader…

      A Review in Photos & Videos…

    Each photo below is linked to the blog post it came from, so be sure to click if you want to read more!

    First, here is the video I made at the beginning of the year with our initial plan.  We mostly stuck to this plan, and added a few things in.


The State by State Activity Pack pages from Crafty Classroom were perfect for my kids. They both love to color so this was usually a relaxed and fun activity.

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We used these books for our reference guides as we learned about each state and filled in our sheets!

NG Kids United States Atlas  Student Atlas

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Near the end of the year I added in a new set of States and Capitals worksheets that I created for review.  We will continue to use those to reinforce state locations and capitals.

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The Readeez 50 States song comes HIGHLY recommended by my kids, they love it and can both sing their states in ABC order thanks to the awesome tune and video! Here’s a peek of a video clip when we were listening to the Readeez song!


We continue to use our USA PowerPoint for review. As we got into the later states, we wouldn’t go all the way back to review, but would pick up where I felt they needed to.

US Geography

Here are a few videos of the PowerPoint in action!

A video posted by Carisa (@1plus1plus1) on

A video posted by Carisa (@1plus1plus1) on

 


Our magnets from Barker Creek were awesome and we added them to our magnetic board all year. These were especially great to review abbreviations.

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Our games were loads of fun and great for review.  They loved game day and we had them often.  Our 2 favorites are Sequence States and Capitals and Scrambled States.

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Krash enjoyed the Stack the States app a lot for review. He loved that the work we did made him better at the game! 

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Final Thoughts…

I am SUPER pleased with how USA Geography went this year and if you are looking for a simple low-prep {prepare before the school year begins and then you are ready for the year} I recommend looking into the resources we used!

 

Here’s a visual version for those of you who want to see these items online!  Click on the image to see the resource or the post!

USA States and Capitals Worksheets United States Geography Homeschool Plan for Elementary StatePack

LM4120  LM4110State Abbreviation Magnets

USA PowerPoint   Readeez 50 States 

Stack the States Scrambled States Sequence States and Capitals

Wondering what our plans are for next year?  Stay tuned, I will be sharing soon!