My Family

My Family

Monday, March 25, 2013

Are you ready for Easter?

     Good question, isn't it? There are so many ways this question can be taken. Are you teaching your child about Easter? Is it more than white bunny rabbits and eggs? If you are teaching your children about what Easter is really about, I'm in the same boat. I've found some really fantastic resources to do it with too! All of them are absolutely free also which for me helps an awful lot. You just have to pay for the printing if it's needed. Some of them are going to take you a little extra time to prepare but I think they will really help your child understand what you are teaching them.
     One site I really love for downloading free materials that I usually send to an office supply store and have them printed is the parent site or the newer site. You may want to take a peek at both sites because the publisher hasn't moved everything from his original, parent site to his newer site.  They are really great sites for 3D manipulatives. I've downloaded some dinosaur paper dinosaur toys for our son from the site. Our son LOVES them! Also, I've downloaded an entire set of 3D paper toys that you can put together to create an entire town of Bethlehem for the Christmas season. I've also downloaded a really cute 3D paper model of the rock room where the body of Jesus was placed after he was crucified. There's also a 3D picture you can put together and put on the wall.
     Now, for my favorite site for homeschooling materials...! Right now, the site is offering ten freebies to teach our son about Easter. The thing is, they are all hidden throughout the site as an Easter Egg Hunt for adults. lol Sometimes it can be pretty interesting and sometimes it can be pretty challenging. All the eggs have a link on Pintrest but a lot of people end up having to log on every time they use the link from Pintrest so that can be quite a hassle so I'm going to post the directions for each of the "eggs" here on my blog. I put the exact area on the site where you can find the egg link for the freebie. Next, in parenthesis I give directions where to find the exact area, then the title of the freebie, finally the publisher of the freebie. Here's the list:
 1. "About Currclick" (Main Page at bottom) for The Death and Resurrection of a King Lapbook with Study Guide by A Journey Through Learning
2. "About CurrClick Live" (Main Pate at bottom) for An Easter Adventure by Scripture Adventures
3. "Free Clubs" (left margin, Quick links, Main Page) for Simply Spring by Rainbow Horizons Publishing
4. "Live Classess" (left margin, main page) for Easter Skip Counting Cards by Eastern Wind Academy
5. "Hybrid Live classes" (left margin, under browse, live classes) for Anti-Coloring Book of Red-Letter Days by Anticoloring Books
6. "Publisher, Progeny Press" (left margin, under browse, click publishers then click Progeny Press) for Pockets of Time for Junie B Jones, First Grader: Dumb Bunny from Fortunately for You Books
7. Teachable Moments (left margin, main page) for A Roman Centurion's Story by Brandenburg Studies
8. Updated Products (Account tab at top of page) for Happy Easter Activity Booklet by Roots and Wings Homeschool
9. All products awaiting my review (Account tab at top of page) for Resurrection Copywork Project Lapbook by The Whole Word Publishing
10. My Library (My Library tab at top of page) for Stories from the Life of Christ Told to the Children by Heritage History
Now, not all of these freebies deal with what Easter is really about so once you download them, you will have to decide whether or not you are going to actually use all of them! Of course, there is  enough information that Easter will be taken care of for a couple years unless you cover material quickly with your children.
Also, on the main page, every week Currclick offers a product to download for free. This week, you can get Early Elementary Fractions WorkText (Textbook and Workbook) by A+Tutorsoft although the Easter freebies will be available until the first of April. By then, the freebie on the main page will change. Now this freebie has absolutely nothing to do with Easter but it's still nice to get free materials to help homeschool our children.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Having Fun with Science

I was looking for something to teach our son that was both fun and had something to do with science a while ago and went looking on the internet when I remembered reading about slime. Having three older sons, I remembered how much fun they had when they were younger playing with the stuff! I found several sites with how tos, instructions, and suggestions to the point that I was almost overwhelmed. I finally got it down to three sets of instructions that had the basics in common but with amounts differing. I then got busy and found all the materials needed to make slime, borax being the most difficult ingredient. Although the directions sound a little difficult to follow, it's really pretty easy to make slime. Since it's so easy, I thought I would share how to make it, whether you need a science lesson or just want to have a little fun with your children.

Glue (white clue is cheaper but clear glue will make a clear slime. I even used some glitter glue)
Water (broke open a couple highlighters and soaked wick inside in water for a couple days)
Food Color is optional

You will be making two solutions and combining the two to make the slime. In a bowl, pour your glue out of the bottle and refill with either clear or colored water and add to the glue in the bowl. I used a combination of glitter glue and clear glue. About one ounce of glitter glue and about four ounces of the other. If you want to use food color to color your slime, add three or four drops at this point. I used water that I had soaked the insides of a couple highlighters for a couple days, one blue and one yellow. Stir until the glue and water are combined. In another container, measure one cup of warm water and add one Tablespoon of Borax. Stir until the Borax is dissolved. Now, using a spoon slowly add the Borax solution to the glue solution while stirring. You will almost immediately feel the slime starting to form! You may not want to add all the borax solution depending on how firm you want your slime. Once your slime is too firm to stir, you can take out the spoon and continue mixing with your hands.

The borax is acting as the crosslinking agent or "connector" for the glue (polyvinyl acetate) molecules. Once the glue molecules join together to form even larger molecules called polymers, you get a thickened gel very similar to slime. If you have access to a chemical supply house, try a 4% solution of polyvinyl alcohol instead of the glue for a less rubbery polymer and one that is transparent showing off the color better. Another way to explain the science is to take a necklace and explain that the glue solution is like a pile of links, not connected. Once you add the borax solution, it's like having the links connect into a necklace.

I hope you enjoy making slime as much as our son and I did if you decide to give it a try. I know that not only did our nine year old son enjoy playing with it, so did our four your old grandson, my twenty four year old son, and our son's entire Cub Scout Pack at our recent Blue and Gold Banquet had a blast with it.