Monday, June 27, 2016

Summer Units - Monsters!

It's week two of our summer vacation, and the theme is Monsters! Scroll on to see what we did!

Previous Summer Themes:
Week 1 - Ice Cream

Monday - Math

We brought out our monster felt board activity from our 2013 Monster Unit! Honey Pot knows her shapes well, having already covered 3D shapes in Kindergarten. So this activity was more for Little M&M.

But she had fun too!

Even Daddy joined in later, and they made this together!

We also brought out a return activity from 2013 that we borrowed from No Time for Flashcards. Though instead of just number recognition, we used this activity for subtraction practice. First Honey Pot gave it a whirl. When she was finished, she wrote her own equations to solve, without googly eyes, which contained some pretty huge numbers!

And then even Little M&M wanted to do it.

When he finished, he asked me to create more equations for him, and he did a terrific job with them as well!

Tuesday - Literacy and Computer

For reading this week we borrowed a few monster books from the library, and mixed them with some classics from our own collection. The kids loved Maggie and the Monster as well as There Was An Old Monster.

I left this invitation out for the kids today:

I created the template in Photoshop Elements. For Honey Pot, I wrote some sight words in the circles as well as some made-up "Monster Words" for her to find. She had so much fun saying the words aloud, such as frow, thib and youp.

For Little M&M I wrote in each letter of the alphabet, as well as some "Monster letters" that he needed to find among them. Some were just backwards versions of real letters, which were tricky for him! A good, quick activity to refresh his memory on letters.

You're free to take one! Just right-click to grab the pictures below, and have fun filling them in with nonsense letters/words!

While researching reading and writing ideas on Pinterest I came across a computer game called "Teach Your Monster To Read." I have been trying to include some computer/I-Pad time into each week, because they enjoy it so much. This was a perfect fit for them! You can make a separate account for each child, based on their reading level. Then they create their own monsters and play reading games to help their monster repair his ship. Honey Pot started at level 2, and it was just perfect for a beginning reader! It focused on tricky sounds (like ch and igh) and sight words. She was having a blast.

Little M&M began on level 1, and it was perfect for him as it focused on simply letter recognition. Though he had trouble using the mouse, he still enjoyed it.

We returned to this game throughout the week. And Honey Pot was a terrific help for her brother.

Also on literacy day, we pull out their workbooks for some writing practice.

Wednesday - Craft

We did some squish art today, based on a tutorial from Picklebums! First we watered down some paint colors, chosen by the kids. Then we scooped it out onto just one half of a piece of cardstock, which we had pre-folded to create a crease.

Here is Honey Pot folding her paper in half again, and smoothing it out.

This is what it looked like when she opened it up. Of course she immediately thought it looked like a butterfly.

And Little M&M did the same to his paper, and it looked like this:

The kids each added more paint, and then some googly eyes to help them look more like monsters. I think they came out all right!

Thursday - Science

We did a science experiment today, following the tutorial from Artsymomma. First we poured some vinegar into a water/soda bottle, and then we placed a couple teaspoons of baking soda inside each balloon (using a funnel). Then I attached the balloons to the tops of the bottles for the kids. I asked them what they thought would happen when we dumped the baking soda into the vinegar. Neither hypothesized that it would inflate the balloon, so they were in for a surprise!

They each carefully lifted the balloon, to allow the baking soda to fall into the vinegar.

We had drawn monster faces onto them, to fit them into our theme this week.

They were amazed!

Each balloon only filled up about halfway, so we did the experiment again with more of each.

And although the balloons fully inflated that time, the kids wanted to try it again to see if we could get the balloon to pop. I used apple cider vinegar this time, as I was running out of distilled white.

It got pretty huge, but never popped. We'll have to try again to see if we can find the right ratio that will make it pop. We talked about how the baking soda and vinegar had a "chemical reaction" that created a gas called carbon dioxide, which filled up the balloon. Though we used the simplest of terms, I think it was a great introduction to the subject and they had a blast!


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