Diet Coke Rocket!

We had done the whole Mentos and Diet Coke experiment in a co-op class a few years back so I wanted something a little different. A quick search led me to this video and I knew that I had found the experiment for us. All you need is a two liter of Diet Coke and a pack of the original Mentos.

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1.Take off the outer wrapper of the Mentos

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2. Drop the Mentos into the Diet Coke and quickly screw on the cap.

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3. Shake the Diet Coke. 4. Open the cap just a little until it starts to fizz. 5. Throw the Diet Coke bottle on the ground and it will take off.

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Warning! Don’t stand close to the bottle. Our bottle exploded mid flight showering my husband with Diet Coke. Of course, the loving family we are only laughed a little!

My Archaeologists

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Today we began our study of ancient times. The kids were sitting around the table waiting on their next worksheet when I grabbed a blanket along with a bag of stuff and walked out the door. Well, curiosity won out and before long my kids appeared beside me on the blanket with a questioning look on their faces. I calmly explained that it was such a beautiful day outside I just couldn’t stay inside any longer. If you know me this is not something I do. School outside? Never, we have to sit at the table, because that is what we do. Like I said before, this year I really want to slow down and enjoy our school year, so today it was a fossil dig outside.DSC_0028-2

I started by reading from Story of the World introduction, How Do We Know What Happened? I had also picked up a few books about archeology at the library. After discussing what history and archeology was, I had them reach into the bag to find a surprise. A fossil dig! I found this kit from Hobby Lobby for around $15.00.I chose the shark tooth dig because the kids have been wanting to do a shark unit, (the second surprise of the day) and I thought this would be a good start to that unit.

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This little kit didn’t disappoint. We loved it so much we stopped by Hobby Lobby just to pick up another one.This time we decided on a gem dig!

Glue Watercolors and Salt

The other day I spent time pinning art ideas from Pinterest. Some of our favorite pins had the same three things in common, glue, watercolors, and salt. I saw many variations of these ideas and in the end we decided to create our own. We started with watercolor paper. We each drew a picture of a flower inspired by our nature walk the other day. We traced our pictures in glue and let that dry overnight. The next day we mixed our watercolors and lost ourselves in our painting. As we painted we sprinkled salt onto the wet watercolors. This is how our art turned out.

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Would we do this again? Yes, but I would definitely skip the glue. The glue was a cool effect but not for all the work it took to outline the pictures. If you decide to try this type of project I would make sure your watercolors are more watery and add the salt often. When the watercolor dries, even a little, the salt doesn’t do anything to the picture.

We Finished The Titanic!

We spent the last few days finishing up our Titanic unit. We talked and read about the evacuation, calling for help, alarm and panic, Carpathia to the rescue, and the aftermath. We didn’t really have anything to add to our books at this point so we finished watching the Netflix video, (which I highly recommend). The video ended with finding the Titanic on the bottom of the ocean and so did our unit study. The kids added pictures of artifacts along with images of the sunken Titanic to their books.

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We will be doing our Titanic Feast this weekend. The kids are busy planning the menu. They have decided to sample foods from each class. I can’t wait to see what they come up with! They even have costumes to dress up in.

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Tomorrow we start ancient times! I Hope everyone is having a wonderful Monday.

Remembering To Breathe

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It’s always easy to get caught up in the rush of everyday life. We wake up, rush through chores, do school,  finish school, shovel a very early dinner in as fast as possible, rush out the door to gymnastics, rush home, shower, read (if we can keep our eyes open), and finally we head to bed, only to wake up and do it all again. The weekends come and it’s yard work, laundry, and don’t forget to clean the house. Oh yeah, don’t get behind because that will cause me to obsess about what I haven’t gotten done. Next thing you know, I hear myself saying things like, “No we don’t have time for art. We have to make up that math sheet from yesterday and we still have today’s assignments.” I see the disappointment on their faces and promise myself that tomorrow I will make time, but I just never seem to find this elusive extra time. I try to tell myself to slow down, but what happens if someone stops by and the house is a mess? Well, I would be embarrassed and apologize profusely. What happens if someone asks about where we are in school? Well, I would feel inadequate for not finishing everything I had planned each and every day.

This was the cycle I fell into last year, skipping the fun things just to get caught up. I would promise myself to make time but fear of what others would think about me would keep me playing catch up. I was a good mom, right? I was cooking, cleaning, supporting them in gymnastics and giving them plenty of love. Then I realized time is short and soon my kids will be grown and gone. My house will always be cleaned and laundry will be folded and put away. I also realized my house will be quiet and lonely. I don’t want to look back and regret not taking the time to enjoy life with my kids because of fear. My goal for this new school year is to listen to my kids. Let them lead me at times. For a few days the kids would ask if we could go on a walk and I found myself responding, maybe later. They asked again and instead of saying later, I grabbed my camera and asked them “You think we can find any beautiful flowers to take pictures of ?”

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We walked four miles and found so many treasures along the way. The best treasure of all was, I watched my kids smile while they pointed out every little thing for me to take a picture of.

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This little shovel had been buried in a ditch since this spring. We figured it was just a broken handle until my son decided to rescue it today. To our surprise it was just fine!

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Some of the treasures from our walk.DSC_0101

Flowers collected along the way so we can enjoy them on the table. So my hope is that I remember to slow down, breathe, and enjoy the day. Everything will still get done, right?

This Moment

I am playing with Soule Mama this week… In her words

{this moment}- A  Friday ritual A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

If you’re inspired to do the same, leave a link to your ‘moment’ in the comments for all to find and see.

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Lesson Planning Art

  • Highhill Education has started Lesson-Planning Linkup and today’s topic is Art Curriculum. I started out thinking that this year I would treat our art time more like an art class. I did some searching and found that Home Art Studio had DVDs with art broken into different lessons. I quickly ordered 3rd through 5th grade all the while thinking this was exactly what I was looking for. I pictured us sitting around the T.V. watching the lesson and afterwards happily doing the project just like in the video. Well this lasted about two whole lessons. Don’t get me wrong, I like the DVDs, but for us, we enjoy adding our own creativity to our projects. I wanted to continue to use the DVDs and I will, I just had to come up with an idea that worked. After watching several lessons we decided to combine them into one project. Here is an example of combining several lessons.

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I have also been pinning like a mad woman in the art department. The kids and I will start working our way through our art board on Pinterest. I will also continue to make up notebooking sheets about different famous artist. I like to add interesting facts about the artist, the style they are known for, a picture of the artist, and some of the pieces they are known for. After working our way through the fact sheet, we pick a piece to use as inspiration for our own project. When we studied Van Gogh we chose The Starry Night.

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I also plan on using these art books by Usborne Art Treasury, Book of Art ideas, and Big Book of Things to Draw. The one thing I would still love to find is a great DVD on drawing. I would love it to have how to draw faces, how to shade, and how to draw realistic objects, so please, if you know of any, feel free to leave me a comment. I hope this post gives you some ideas to think about. Also, don’t forget to hop on over to Highhill Education to see what others are doing for art this year!