I have been trying to start an animal unit. More information about this unit can be found at FOSS Science: http://lhsfoss.org/scope/folio/html/AnimalsTwobyTwo/1.html
Paraphrasing their goal: to interact with water and land animals by observing and caring for them. Animals are presented in pairs of similar type to make comparisons regarding structure, and behaviors.
Since we just visited the aquarium, the next thing is to get them a fish! We will be observing, studying and comparing goldfish. Later we will compare them to guppies. The unit is children lead, and shall last as long as the kids are interested.
For the first activity, the kids simply observe the goldfish. We talk about the parts of the body, what they do, what they need, where, in the water, they are located...etc.
I pulled in my white board and asked them to tell me their thoughts. I printed out a picture of a fish and we labeled the body parts. We talked about the different colors they have: white and black eyes, orange body, lighter orange fin and tale. We looked for some additional information from the books you see on the floor.
Then, the kids wanted to draw their fish.
This is the big sister's. The little guy cut his up.
I am excited to introduce the fish puzzle and the three part cards to learn all the body parts next week. I also hope to keep an observation log of the fish's behavior.
I loved the FOSS Science modules as a teacher. As a home learning mom, I am sure to enjoy them even more. The kids will get the opportunity to learn by doing. All I need is to wait for a sign of interests! By the way, the materials needed for many of the units are easy to come by, and fairly cheap! There is no need of fancy workbooks, or equipment.
That night the kids were back at Laura Numeroff's books. They just love them!
Reading the same books a few times might sound boring to some. To us, it has brought the opportunity to catch different things. For example, if you read the books with the mouse, the moose and the pig, you will discover that the last page of each book has all the things this animals asked for in the picture. Also, if you read the book about the pig having a party, you will see all the characters from all her books (even in the hide-and-seek page). There are many hidden images in the book. If you only read it once, you are likely to miss them. We have enjoyed revisiting these books. The kids have made wonderful connections remembering what they know, and what they have experience in the past.