Thursday, May 31, 2012

Storing Student School Work


Storing school work can be quite a task. You want to keep everything yet you don't want it to keep you! As the school year starts to close for many, we are left with mounds of paperwork. What to do? This is the way I organize our homeschool goods which also offers itself as a memory maker.


What I do is prepare two binders for each student per grade. I then take a "school picture" for the year and slip it inside the binder cover. This serves to label the owner of the binder as well as providing a memory of what your child looked like at that specific age. It is also special to decorate the covers with scrapbook supplies, stickers or clip art. I must admit to color coding the binders according to their clothing in the pictures but that is just my obsessive compulsive nature coming out. You can also have your students do their own decorating and paper organizing as a year end project or beginning of the year project. 

Inserting tabs into your binders (such as Bible, science/nature, math, etc., or according to unit of study such as bees, pioneers, pilgrims and so forth...) is the final touch. Then I simply file the school work in the proper category. You can start this up at the beginning of the year and add as you go or you can prepare it at the end of the year once you know what you have to work with.


It also helps to label the spine of the binders and it makes a pretty presentation on your school shelves. You can color code each binder to your children's favorite colors or you can just have fun and do whatever you please.


I also include pictures of the field trips taken that year, pictures of larger projects, science experiments and charts that will not fit into the binder. I make little scrapbook sheets (or have students do their own) by pasting these pictures down on card-stock and jotting down a few words pertaining to them. Then, I simply place these memory pages into plastic sheet protectors to keep them safe in the binder.


"Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another:
and the LORD hearkened, and heard it,
and a book of remembrance was written before him
for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name."

~ Malachi 3:16


How do you organize your school work?


Monday, May 28, 2012

Holding Each Other Up

Madonna of the Prairie by W.H.D. Koerner

We as wives and mothers can get physically tired, mentally exhausted and very overwhelmed at times. When you add one extra burden or struggle into our hearts, it seems to bring everything to a head and we can feel so utterly alone.

Ladies, do not be ashamed of those moments of weakness. Do not feel like a failure. More importantly, do not be too proud to accept encouragement and love when they are offered. Daily we draw our strength from the Almighty but there are times when God sends someone to give comfort and care. We must remember that His followers are also His instruments.

Would you believe that Moses, the leader of Israel had these same struggles? He was given a work by God but was growing weary in it. In Exodus 17:11-12, we find him barely able to raise up his staff during a major battle and whenever he lowered it, the Amalekite enemies would prevail. Thus, his arms began to tire and soon he could no longer hold them up! What was to be done? Did not God give this responsibility to Moses? He had made it possible for him to part the Red Sea and bring water from a rock! Where was He now when his strength was failing? Continue reading at Deep Roots at Home



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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Flying Kites

Flying Kites by John Philip Falter

Kites are a pleasurable pastime in America though they are thought to have originated in China. The frame of the first kites are said to have been made with silk and bamboo. Sadly, many children today have never ran through a field with the wind in their hair and flown one. This is something we plan to do soon!

The Young Kitemakers by Harry Brooker

We are going to attempt to make our own kites and fly them in our field. You can find directions here if you would like to try this. The art of kite making and flying utilizes the skills of arts and crafts (decorating and creating it), mathematics (measuring all the supplies and cutting to size) and physical education (when complete, you will need to run around to get it going).


It can also cleverly include history and language arts when you introduce books about Ben Franklin and read kite related poems and stories (see below). The science of air pressure can be taught through the example of the kite (here is an easy example for children). As you can see, it is a fun project that is also very educational. I love these types of teaching moments where no one realizes that they are learning! These make for excellent summer projects to keep the minds working and the hands busy.

 



THE WIND
I saw you toss the kites on highAnd blow the birds about the sky;And all around I heard you pass,Like ladies' skirts across the grass—O wind, a-blowing all day long,O wind, that sings so loud a song!
I saw the different things you did,But always you yourself you hid.I felt you push, I heard you call,I could not see yourself at all—O wind, a-blowing all day long,O wind, that sings so loud a song!
O you that are so strong and cold,O blower, are you young or old?Are you a beast of field and tree,Or just a stronger child than me?O wind, a-blowing all day long,O wind, that sings so loud a song!
~ Robert Louis Stevenson




"The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit." ~ John 3:8


And a bedtime story...

Raggedy Ann and the Kite

RAGGEDY ANN AND THE KITE

Raggedy Ann watched with interest the preparations.
A number of sticks were being fastened together with strings and covered with light cloth.
Raggedy Ann heard some of the boys talk of "The Kite," so Raggedy Ann knew this must be a kite.
When a tail had been fastened to the kite and a large ball of heavy twine tied to the front, one of the boys held the kite up in the air and another boy walked off, unwinding the ball of twine.
There was a nice breeze blowing, so the boy with the twine called, "Let 'er go" and started running.
Marcella held Raggedy up so that she could watch the kite sail through the air.
How nicely it climbed! But suddenly the kite acted strangely, and as all the children shouted advice to the boy with the ball of twine, the kite began darting this way and that, and finally making four or five loop-the-loops, it crashed to the ground.
"It needs more tail on it!" one boy shouted.
Then the children asked each other where they might get more rags to fasten to the tail of the kite.
Flying with the kite
"Let's tie Raggedy Ann to the tail!" suggested Marcella. "I know she would enjoy a trip 'way up in the sky!"
The boys all shouted with delight at this new suggestion. So Raggedy Ann was tied to the tail of the kite.
This time the kite rose straight in the air and remained steady. The boy with the ball of twine unwound it until the kite and Raggedy Ann were 'way, 'way up and far away. How Raggedy Ann enjoyed being up there! She could see for miles and miles! And how tiny the children looked!
Suddenly a great puff of wind came and carried Raggedy Ann streaming 'way out behind the kite! She could hear the wind singing on the twine as the strain increased.
Suddenly Raggedy Ann felt something rip. It was the rag to which she was tied. As each puff of wind caught her the rip widened.
When Marcella watched Raggedy Ann rise high above the field, she wondered how much Raggedy Ann enjoyed it, and wished that she, too, might have gone along. But after the kite had been up in the air for five or ten minutes, Marcella grew restless. Kites were rather tiresome. There was more fun in tea parties out under the apple tree.
"Will you please pull down the kite now?" she asked the boy with the twine. "I want Raggedy Ann."
"Let her ride up there!" the boy replied. "We'll bring her home when we pull down the kite! We're going to get another ball of twine and let her go higher!"
Marcella did not like to leave Raggedy Ann with the boys, so she sat down upon the ground to wait until they pulled down the kite.
But while Marcella watched Raggedy Ann, a dot in the sky, she could not see the wind ripping the rag to which Raggedy was tied.
Suddenly the rag parted and Raggedy Ann went sailing away as the wind caught in her skirts.
Marcella jumped from the ground, too surprised to say anything. The kite, released from the weight of Raggedy Ann began darting and swooping to the ground.
Where is Raggedy Ann?
"We'll get her for you!" some of the boys said when they saw Marcella's troubled face, and they started running in the direction Raggedy Ann had fallen. Marcella and the other girls ran with them. They ran, and they ran, and they ran, and at last they found the kite upon the ground with one of the sticks broken, but they could not find Raggedy Ann anywhere.
"She must have fallen almost in your yard!" a boy said to Marcella, "for the kite was directly over here when the doll fell!"
Marcella was heartbroken. She went in the house and lay on the bed. Mamma went out with the children and tried to find Raggedy Ann, but Raggedy Ann was nowhere to be seen.
When Daddy came home in the evening he tried to find Raggedy, but met with no success. Marcella had eaten hardly any dinner, nor could she be comforted by Mamma or Daddy. The other dolls in the nursery lay forgotten and were not put to bed that night, for Marcella lay and sobbed and tossed about her bed.
Finally she said a little prayer for Raggedy Ann, and went to sleep. And as she slept Marcella dreamed that the fairies came and took Raggedy Ann with them to fairyland for a visit, and then sent Raggedy Ann home to her. She awakened with a cry. Of course Mamma came to her bed right away and said that Daddy would offer a reward in the morning for the return of Raggedy.
"It was all my fault, Mamma!" Marcella said. "I should not have offered the boys dear old Raggedy Ann to tie on the tail of the kite! But I just know the fairies will send her back."
Mamma took her in her arms and soothed her with cheering words, although she felt indeed that Raggedy Ann was truly lost and would never be found again.
Now, where do you suppose Raggedy Ann was all this time?
Falling
When Raggedy Ann dropped from the kite, the wind caught in her skirts and carried her along until she fell in the fork of the large elm tree directly over Marcella's house. When Raggedy Ann fell with a thud, face up in the fork of the tree, two robins who had a nest near by flew chattering away.
Raggedy Ann in the tree
Presently the robins returned and quarreled at Raggedy Ann for laying so close to their nest, but Raggedy Ann only smiled at them and did not move.
When the robins quieted down and quit their quarreling, one of them hopped up closer to Raggedy Ann in order to investigate.
It was Mamma Robin. She called to Daddy Robin and told him to come. "See the nice yarn! We could use it to line the nest with," she said.
So the robins hopped closer to Raggedy Ann and asked if they might have some of her yarn hair to line their nest. Raggedy Ann smiled at them. So the two robins pulled and tugged at Raggedy Ann's yarn hair until they had enough to line their nest nice and soft.
Evening came and the robins sang their good night songs, and Raggedy Ann watched the stars come out, twinkle all night and disappear in the morning light. In the morning the robins again pulled yarn from Raggedy Ann's head, and loosened her so she could peep over the side of the limb, and when the sun came up Raggedy Ann saw she was in the trees in her own yard.
Now before she could eat any breakfast, Marcella started out to find Raggedy Ann. And, it was Marcella herself who found her. And this is how she did it.
Mamma Robin had seen Marcella with Raggedy Ann out in the yard many times, so she began calling "Cheery! Cheery!" and Daddy Robin started calling "Cheery! Cheery! Cheer up! Cheer up! Cheerily Cheerily! Cheery! Cheery!" And Marcella looking up into the tree above the house to see the robins, discovered Raggedy Ann peeping over the limb at her.
Oh, how her heart beat with happiness. "Here is Raggedy Ann," she shouted.
And Mamma and Daddy came out and saw Raggedy smiling at them, and Daddy got the clothes prop and climbed out of the attic window and poked Raggedy Ann out of the tree and she fell right into Marcella's arms where she was hugged in a tight embrace.
"You'll never go up on a kite again, Raggedy Ann!" said Marcella, "for I felt so lost without you. I will never let you leave me again."
So Raggedy Ann went into the house and had breakfast with her little mistress and Mamma and Daddy smiled at each other when they peeped through the door into the breakfast room, for Raggedy Ann's smile was wide and very yellow. Marcella, her heart full of happiness, was feeding Raggedy Ann part of her egg.
Marcella has Raggedy Ann back

THE END

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Farm Fresh Eggs

Feeding the Chickens by Jacob Henricus Maris

“Eggs have two advantages over all other foods.
First, they are procurable nearly everywhere; second,
the most dainty person is sure when eating eggs
that they have not been handled.”

~ ‘A Book for A Cook’, The Pillsbury Co. (1905)



Do you have farm raised eggs? Below is a diagram which will help you to determine if your eggs are fresh. When in doubt, place them in a bowl of water and the results present themselves.




(1) slightly stale, (2) stale, (3) very stale

All of the above are good to eat except for number 3… the floaters are most likely rotten.


"Eggs"tra Information: 
  • Fresh eggs do not peel well when hard boiled. If that is your intention, leave eggs out in room temperature for about two to three days prior to cooking in order to achieve an easier peeling experience. You can go crazy trying to peel a fresh egg!
  • Crushed egg shells can be recycled back into the chickens feed as a calcium source providing they no longer resemble an egg (otherwise your chickens may begin to look at their eggs as food which is big trouble).
  • Feeding chickens your table scraps is a great way to supplement their meals while limiting waste in your home. However, some foods are toxic to chickens such as raw potato peels, avocado (pits and skins) and rotten foods. It is also wise to avoid coffee grinds, chocolate (who would waste such a precious commodity anyway!) greasy foods, processed foods (we shouldn't be eating these things either!) and raw meat.
  • The chicken came first. Just as God created Adam and Eve as full grown humans, all other animals in the beginning were created in their mature forms as well (making them ready to reproduce and populate the world). 
  • Here is where we order our chicks should you like to start your own coop operation for there is nothing like a fresh egg with orange yolks.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Accomplishments for the Day or Need a List? (Part Two)

The Breakfast Table by Harold Knight

In our last post, we discussed the importance of taking moments to love your family and not being ruled by the list of things to do in your household. Those thoughts usually only affect the "Martha" minded women who are task oriented and need constant reminders to stop and smell the roses.

Today we are going to discuss the "Mary" minded women who can't seem to get everything together. What we must remember is that Jesus told Mary she had done the "good part" by staying to hear His life changing words of salvation to the soul. She was absolutely justified to sit at the feet of the Savior and just listen! However, it is because she had Christ in her home that she was allowed this luxury.  If women were to sit and read and reflect all day long in their daily existence, surely her home would be undesirable.

There is a balance that must be found. We are called to be the "keeper at home" and that is a biblical task we should take with great care. If you find it hard to commence your day, a list is an excellent place to start. The night before, write down anything that must be done. Give yourself little goals. When you complete certain items, allow yourself a few minutes of refreshment or rest.

Here are some other good places to start:
  1. Make your bed (right away) each morning.
  2. Do all prep work for dinner during the quiet of the day (i.e., cut salad, chop any vegetables, marinate meat or prepare sauces and/or casseroles). Clean up the mess. There will be less dishes to do in the evening when you are tired. Set the table. Even if dinner isn't ready, this simple step shows care to your husband when he walks through the door.
  3. Straighten up the living room prior to your husband's return from work as this is where he and you will most likely rest together after the long day.
  4. Give your bathrooms a once over daily.
Most men are out all day in filthy, aggressive and stressful environments. By keeping your home a sanctuary, you are being such a blessing. You are doing him good (Proverbs 31:12)! Let your love shine for him by placing an importance on the home that he takes so much care to provide for.

"She looketh well to the ways of her household,
and eateth not the bread of idleness.
Her children arise up, and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praiseth her."
~ Proverbs 31:27-28


*Note: This post is geared towards the "Mary" minded women. 
Visit here if you are "Martha" minded and are "busy with many things".*
Which one are you?


Monday, May 21, 2012

Accomplishments for the Day or "The List" (Part One)

The Letter by Albert Lynch

Many women love to plan and prepare. I happen to be one of them. I set goals for myself and have an immense desire to check them off my list at the end of the day. I feel such satisfaction when that occurs! The sad part is that when it doesn't happen, I can get very frustrated (and it shows!) and wonder where did my day go?

You feel like you weren't productive. The ceiling fans are showing signs of stalactites, the windows in your home blend in with your walls and the kitchen sink is full of dishes that require a pick and chisel to clean. You feel like a failure as you wonder (and are irritable!) what did I accomplish today?

How many years was I influenced and flustered by these thoughts? How many hours did I waste in grouchiness trying to conquer those goals I set for myself? But most importantly, how many minutes and seconds of kisses and hugs did I rob from my husband and children while trying to bow down to the god that I created myself, "The List"?

I will always be thankful for the older woman I had in my life to guide me at that point. I was encouraged that my accomplishments were in the form of a happy husband and smiling child. Each day that I nurtured the needs of my family, I was bringing glory and beauty to the heavenly home.  I was doing what I was called to do and that "list" was the same each day and given to me by the Almighty (and in good order)…
  1. to love my husband
  2. to love my children
  3. to be discreet and chaste
  4. to be a keeper at home
(Titus 2:4-5)

Of course, I would continue keeping the home (it is on the heavenly list!) and tackling those scientific phenomenons that were occurring in my little kingdom. I would even keep a list. The difference was, that I knew the God given responsibilities on the top were the priority. I was accomplishing much each day when I loved and served my family and I wasn't going to let my man made paper make a failure out of me anymore.

"Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap
but by the seeds that you plant."
~ Robert Louis Stevenson


*Note: This post is geared towards the "Martha" minded women. You know who you are…
I am without a doubt one of them since I am the task oriented type.
Visit here if you are a "Mary" minded woman.*
Which one are you?


Thursday, May 17, 2012

Heap of Hankies ~ Bringing them Back


"Marianne came hastily out of the parlour apparently in violent affliction,
with her handkerchief at her eyes…"
~ Jane Austen, Sense & Sensibility

Handkerchiefs, once a necessity in days gone by, are still a favorite of mine. Do you remember those lovely pieces of cotton? I have a small collection and am always looking for ways in which to employ them. One day it dawned on me, I could use them just as they were originally intended but with a slightly modern twist.


"...and covering her face with her handkerchiefElizabeth was soon lost to every thing else…"
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

I placed a "heap of hankies" in a small dish and displayed them in the bathroom where they would most likely be needed. As you would a box of tissue, just take when needed. The only difference would be that the used product goes into the laundry basket instead of the waste basket. Thus, this is very beautiful for the budget and a pretty way to practice good stewardship.


That's like you, dear! What will we get?" exclaimed Jo.

Everyone thought soberly for a minute, then Meg announced,
as if the idea was suggested by the sight of her own pretty hands,
"I shall give her a nice pair of gloves."

"Army shoes, best to be had," cried Jo.

"Some handkerchiefs, all hemmed," said Beth.

~ Louisa May Alcott, Little Women


Thrifty Thinking: Handkerchiefs, the reusable tissue...


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Flowers for Free

Primroses, Geraniums and a Bird's Nest by George Clare

Flowers are such a beautiful display of God's creation and I love them dearly but sometimes it breaks the bank to plant them! Cuttings are an excellent way to establish a garden without paying a penny. What you need are either some flowers in which to propagate or a friend or neighbor with a thriving garden. This method works well with sturdier and thicker stemmed plants. Delicate designs are not good choices as they will most likely wilt in the process.

Geraniums

Geraniums are probably the easiest plants to start off with because success is almost certain. To take a cutting, choose a strong stem with a few open leaves. Cut the stem just below a leaf at an angle and peel off the lower leaves on the bottom part of what you just cut. Place this cutting into a small pot filled with potting soil (I used regular soil but the experts recommend a combination of peat moss, perlite, vermiculite) and press the plant firmly in place. Keep the soil moist and make sure there is adequate drainage. Once you notice the plant has begun to grow its own leaves and settle in, you can transplant it anywhere in your garden, hanging planters or window boxes provided the conditions are beneficial to the plant.

  • The best time to take cuttings is in the morning.
  • Keep the cuttings cool and moist until you are ready to plant. You can store the cuttings in wet paper towels prior to using or store in plastic bag in refrigerator.
  • Place pot in indirect sunlight until it flourishes and is ready to be transplanted.
  • Place a plastic bag loosely over the plant allowing for some air to pass through. This will provide some humidity and lock in some moisture which is necessary.
  • rooting hormone is also helpful to ensure better results. Just dip the stem in the powder prior to planting and tap off any excess. (The geranium will do fine without it.)

Hydrangea

I am going to attempt some cuttings with my hydrangeas this year. The instructions are basically the same as above although it may be beneficial to dip these cuttings in a rooting hormone prior to planting. A six inch cut from the top of the plant and removal of the lower leaves is also recommended.

Other lovely flowers that can be propagated by cuttings are:

  • Gardenia 
  • Begonia 
  • Impatiens 
  • Jasmine
  • Magnolia
  • Rose
  • Wisteria

Are you ready to create your own little Garden of Eden?


Saturday, May 12, 2012

A Mother's Happiness



~ A Tribute from Literature to Mother's ~


'Yes, Jo, I think your harvest will be a good one,' began Mrs. March...

'Not half so good as yours, mother. Here it is, and we never can thank you enough for the patient sowing and reaping you have done,' cried Jo, with the loving impetuosity which she never could outgrow.

'I hope there will be more wheat and fewer tares every year,' said Amy softly.

'A large sheaf, but I know there's room in your heart for it, Marmee dear,' added Meg's tender voice.

Touched to the heart, Mrs. March could only stretch out her arms, as if to gather children and grand-children to herself, and say, with face and voice full of motherly love, gratitude, and humility:

'Oh, my girls, however long you may live, I never can wish you a greater happiness than this!'

~ Louisa May Alcott, Excerpt from Good Wives


"Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord…"
~ Psalm 127:3

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Bees ~ A Unit Study

Bees are an excellent spring study choice for children that also offers much in the character building department. You will be amazed at these little creatures whom God made to do great things!

Suggested Chapter Book to Read Aloud:

595051: A Hive of Busy Bees: Stories That Help Build Character for Children 5-10 A Hive of Busy Bees: Stories That Help Build Character for Children 5-10

By Effie Williams

There is also a sequel to this book titled: Danny and Debbie Learn From Another Hive of Bees

About the books~
"Don and Joyce are invited to spend the summer with their grandparents at the farm. Each day presents exciting opportunities for them to experience outdoor farm life-so different from the city-especially the first day when they encounter a hive of angry bees. From this episode grandma chooses stories from her scrapbook and skillfully develops some character lessons for each evening bedtime BEE-STORY. Contents: Bee Obedient; Bee Honest; Bee Truthful; Bee Kind; Bee Polite; Bee Gentle; Bee Helpful; Bee Careful; Bee Grateful; Bee Loving; Bee Accepted; Bee Confident; Bee Content. Recommended for ages 5 to 10."
Picture Book Suggestions: Hummy and the wax castle by Elizabeth Ernst (This is a creation science based book which gives a lot of information about honeybees in a story form.) Bombus the Bumblebee by Elsie J. Larson, Bombus Finds a Friend by Elsie J. Larson (These Bombus books are character building pictures books with creation science information at the end along with activities.) Honey in a Hive (Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science 2, Science Based Picture Book) by Anne Rockwell, and any other insect book with information about bees. The Bee Tree by Patricia Polacco (A sweet picture book.)  

I would suggest reading together from the above chapter books for 1/2 hour a day. Read one of the pictures books per day and have your children do some of the listed activities below each day according to their abilities. Include all work separately in a notebook/binder or composition book for each child. Don't forget to let them decorate their own covers with pictures of bees, stickers or bee clip art! Encourage them to be creative.  By the end of a few weeks you will have a nice collection of "bee scrapbooks" to cherish as an educational keepsake.



Bee Inspired Learning Activities ~

Suggested Spelling/Vocabulary List: Make sure to have a "Spelling Bee" at the end of the unit!
  1. pollinate
  2. nectar
  3. flower
  4. honey
  5. hive
  6. sting
  7. colony
  8. queen
  9. drone
  10. swarm
  11. worker
  12. head
  13. thorax
  14. abdomen
  15. apiary

Bible/Penmanship: Copy a Bible verse a day about bees and/or honey in your best writing making sure to include all proper punctuation.

Bible Discussion: Read Proverbs 25:16 about eating "just enough" honey.  Talk to your children about "over-eating", the sin of gluttony, and self-control.

"Hast thou found honey? eat so much as is sufficient for thee,
lest thou be filled therewith, and vomit it."
~ Proverbs 25:16

Bible Discussion: Read the Proverb below to your children and discuss the meaning together.

"Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones."
~ Proverbs 16:24

Language Arts/Penmanship: Have your children copy the following poem in their best writing or cursive making sure to use all the proper punctuation. You can also have children memorize this poem if you like.


Against Idleness and Mischief by Isaac Watts

How doth the little busy bee
Improve each shining hour,
And gather honey all the day
From every opening flower.

How skillfully she builds her cell,
How neat she spreads her wax;
And labours hard to store it well
With the sweet food that she makes.

In works of labour, or of skill,
I would be busy too;
For Satan finds some mischief still
For idle hands to do.

In books, or work, or healthful play,
Let my first years be past;
That I may give for every day
Some good account at last.

Language Arts/Grammar: Have your students point out all the nouns in the first paragraph. Have them point out the verbs in the second paragraph. Have your children explain to you what the third paragraph means. Lastly, see if they can point out the adjectives in the last paragraph.

Language Arts/Grammar: Discuss "homophones" with your children using the example of "bee" and "be".  See if your students can come up with more examples. Older children can write them down.
"A homophone is a word that is pronounced the same as another word but differs in meaning. The words may be spelled the same, such as rose (flower) and rose (past tense of "rise"), or differently, such as carat, caret, and carrot, or to,two, and too. Homophones that are spelled the same are also both homographs and homonyms. Homophones that are spelled differently are also called heterographs. The term "homophone" may also apply to units longer or shorter than words, such as phrases, letters or groups of letters that are pronounced the same as another phrase, letter or group of letters." ~ Wikipedia
Language Arts/Grammar: Teach your children about similes using the following terms. A simile is a figure of speech that directly compares two different things, usually by using the words "like" or "as".

“Sweet as honey...”

“As busy as a bee...”

Science/Nature: Diagram a bee and label the parts.

Science/Nature: Explain the different purposes of the queen bee, worker and drones.



Science/Nature: Make a list of the different types of bees (e.g., honeybee, bumblebee, carpenter bee, etc.) and then have the older children alphabetize it.

Science/Nature: What is the differences between a honeybee and a bumblebee? Do a venn diagram making sure to place the similarities in the middle and the differences on the proper sides.


Science/Nature: Learn about pollination. Older children can write a short paragraph to explain it while younger ones can narrate to mother how it works (or they can illustrate it). Discuss the importance of pollination to our food sources. What would happen if bees were no longer here to pollinate crops?

Science/Nature: Have your children draw and label the four stages that the bee undergoes (egg to larva, pupa then adult).



Science/Health/Research: Research the health benefits of honey and have your older children do a short report on the subject. Another subject to research would be the medicinal cures used with honey.

"My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste…"
~ Proverbs 24:13

Science/Nature: Bees produce many products which are beneficial to man. Make a chart of what is gleaned from the bee and its specific uses. For example, bee pollen, royal jelly, honey, beeswax, and propolis.

Science/Research: Research what to do in case you get stung by a bee. There are some natural remedies that help with the pain. Write out a list. If any one in your family is allergic to stings then this would be a great time to discuss what to do should this emergency occur.

Literature/Character Building: Read aloud "The Law of Authority and Obedience" by Margaret Gatty from "Parables From Nature" (link will take you to the story for free).  The bees in this Victorian piece of literature will teach your children about authority, obedience and nature around them.  Great discussion in the family will surely follow.

Pollination Map for Honey Bees in the United States (Photo Source)
Geography: Using the map above, have your children find their state and explain what the major sources of pollination for bees are in your specific location. You can also name a few other states and have them tell you their source of pollination as well. They may need a physical map of the United States to help them identify the states better.

History/Research: People have found honey in tombs that was still very edible! Do a report on this amazing food in relation to Egyptian history.

Current Events/Science/Nature: Older children can research why bees are becoming scarce and write a report about it.

Home-Economics/Math: Bake some chocolate chip cookies using "honey".  Make sure the children do the math and counting! For extra math, have them double the recipe.

Foreign Language: Memorize how to say "bee" and "honey" in the foreign language you are studying.

Boy with Bee by Jessie Wilcox Smith

Art History/Picture Study: Study the painting above and ask the following questions to your children:
  • What colors do they notice in the painting?
  • What has caught the attention of the little boy?
  • Does he seemed scared of the bee?
  • The artist of this painting, Jessie Wilcox Smith, is known for illustrating many children's books in the past. Have they even seen her paintings in their books? Here is a link to some of her illustrations. See if children can guess the books that they portray.
  • Do they like this painting? Why or why not?

Art: Draw a picture of a bee and color realistically or paint some bees.



Art: Color in some pictures of bees (sample above) with link.

Arts/Crafts: Do some bee crafts.

Field Trip: Go and visit a bee farm/apiary.



"My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste: So shall the knowledge of wisdom be unto thy soul: when thou has found it, then there shall be a reward, and thy expectation shall not be cut off". 
~ Proverbs 24:13-14


Monday, May 7, 2012

Wash Day Prayer ~ Free Inspirational Printable

Washing by the Rocky Creek by Carla D’aguanno

"Each day had its own proper work. Ma used to say:
"Wash on Monday,
Iron on Tuesday,
Mend on Wednesday,
Churn on Thursday,
Clean on Friday,
Bake on Saturday,
Rest on Sunday."
~ Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder


Laundry Maid by Greuze


Do you dread wash day? After trying my hand at hand washing for two months (out of a weird necessity, I assure you), I can honestly say that I love wash day now... with my washing machine. It really puts things into perspective. There can be beauty in wash day, for I find the most lovely thing is that we no longer have to be a slave to the wash. We can embrace it and think on the good things… such as the fresh aroma of a clean load coming out of the washer, and the fact that we don't have to haul water from the well, lug our soiled clothes to a nearby creek or boil water in a large kettle. To my way of thinking, there is much to be thankful for on our wash days!

Wash Day by Daniel Ridgeway Knight

THE WASHING ~ A Poem of Old

They that wash on Monday
Have all the week to dry;

They that wash on Tuesday
Are not so much awry;

They that wash on Wednesday
Are not so much to blame;

They that wash on Thursday
Wash for very shame;

They that wash on Friday
Wash because of need,

And they that wash on Saturday,
Oh, they are lazy indeed!

Women Washing Clothes by the Stream by Daniel Ridgeway Knight


"That afternoon she washed the clothes in the tub and spread them on the grass to dry."

~ Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder


Wash Day by Renoir

"I made a 'pome' yesterday, when I was helping Hannah wash; and, as father likes my silly little things, I put it in to amuse him. Give him the lovingest hug that ever was, and kiss yourself a dozen times for your
"Topsy-Turvy Jo."
"A SONG FROM THE SUDS.
"Queen of my tub, I merrily sing,While the white foam rises high;And sturdily wash and rinse and wring,And fasten the clothes to dry;Then out in the free fresh air they swing,Under the sunny sky.
"I wish we could wash from our hearts and soulsThe stains of the week away,And let water and air by their magic makeOurselves as pure as they;Then on the earth there would be indeedA glorious washing-day!
"Along the path of a useful life,Will heart's-ease ever bloom;The busy mind has no time to thinkOf sorrow or care or gloom;And anxious thoughts may be swept away,As we bravely wield a broom.
"I am glad a task to me is given,To labor at day by day;For it brings me health and strength and hope,And I cheerfully learn to say,—'Head, you may think, Heart, you may feel,But, Hand, you shall work alway!'"
~ Louisa May Alcott, Excerpt from Little Women

Washing Day by Pierre Edouard Frere

Children can be very helpful in the laundry process. They can be taught to sort your clothes, check pockets and reverse clothing to proper sides. They can also fold clothes while younger ones can match socks. They may be sloppy at first but the progress will be quick and within a year they will be such a blessing to you in this area! Just overlook the lumpy folding jobs they do in the beginning and you will succeed in having many capable hands in the future. View here for more ideas concerning children and laundry.

Wash Day on the Plains by Minerva K. Teichert
Laundry List ~

  • Clean your washing machine every few months by pouring 2 cups of white vinegar and running your washing machine on a complete cycle using hot water. This is especially important if you have hard water.
  • Visit here for a frugal recipe to make your own fabric softener. 
  • Hydrogen Peroxide is a safe alternative to bleach for your whites, add one cup to wash cycle or 1/2 cup to your rinse cycle for whitening.
  • Borax, salt and baking soda are effective stain removers. A dab of lemon essential oil also does a great job.
Washerwoman by Walter H. Everett

Whenever we are doing household tasks, it is helpful to dwell on pleasant thoughts. Below are some verses in Scripture that I felt were inspirational to think upon while performing our laundry duties and so I composed them into a sort of prayer (there is a free decorative printable of it shared below).

"Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me."

~ Based on Psalms 51:2, 51:7, 51:10

You may also be interested in our printable of "Laundry Room Labels".

Simply download and print. Please let me know if you have any problems printing.

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