Friday, February 3, 2012

Rowing :: Papa Piccolo

"The lion is the emblem of Venice, but the common cat rules its narrow streets and alleyways. A prince among these feline rulers is Piccolo, and what a fine life he leads! Especially after dark- when the streets are full of possibilities!

Then one night, Piccolo makes a discovery that threatens his carefree life and his independence and starts him on a new and special kind of adventure." From the book description on Amazon.

We took two weeks to row Papa Piccolo and we loved the book. I did worry it would get a little old reading it each day for two weeks, and while the boys quit sitting in rapt attention, they very much enjoyed the book and have started retelling parts of the story before I can read it...sign of a good book around here!

It seems like I'm trying to fit a lot more into the little boy's school time, which I am but it is going really smoothly and other than a couple of complaints about math I think everything I've added is going well.

FIAR Activities ::


We still start each day of our school time with reading our FIAR book. This year we started out reading around our school table but I wasn't liking that and was really missing the "cuddle" aspect of reading together so I moved our operation to the floor. We really need some bean bag chairs to make this part of the day even more comfortable.


I made a little fill-in-the-blanks "poem" about cats.


The book is illustrated in watercolors and the boys ask everyday to paint so we pulled out the watercolors one day and let them have at it. #3's actually looks like a picture. It's a tree with a cat in it.


A measuring lesson for #3.


At the beginning of the first week the boys had all the legos and a pattern to make gondolas which I used the second week to decorate the cake we made. #2 helped me with this little activity. I showed him a picture from creekside learning's (link below) site of a lego gondola. He recreated it with legos we had available then took pictures of each step, just like a lego instruction book. We then bagged up the pieces they would need to make the gondolas with his instructions. I formatted the pictures #2 took into a two page "booklet" that we laid out with the bags during centers.


We also talked a little about nocturnal animals since, "When nighttime came to the canals and narrow streets of Venice and almost everyone went inside and turned on the lights, Piccolo went out." I found a nice set of mini-books at homeschool share (link below) and we learned a little about the nocturnal animal habits and senses and advantages.

We also did our flag and map work, finding Italy on the world map and hanging our flag with the others to show our travels with FIAR.

All About Reading ::

I started All About Reading Level Pre-1 with both of the boys a couple of weeks ago. I am loving the program and can see them both learning a lot with it. We concentrated on letter B this week and rhyming words.



Each week there is a letter craft to complete that coincides with the story from "Zig Zag Zebra". The boys used an eraser to make blueberries on their letter B pages. I think another part of the program that is really helping is the repetition of each day. We go over the poster of capitol letters singing the ABC's each day. Now, this is probably something I should have been doing anyway but, I don't know, having a program telling me to means it's actually getting done.

Animal ABC


One new thing I added was Carisa's ABC Animals to go-along with our AAR letter of the week. This fun letter B will get bears cut out and pasted on top. There are other parts to her program that the boys like; tracers, story observations, etc. Fun stuff and helps spread the letter through the week. Baby even joined us for gluing buttons on paper, he thought he was so cool! Amazing little finger pinching the buttons and so proud of himself for getting them in the glue.

You Can Read ::



I also added Carisa's You Can Read program to work on sight words with #3 to our daily routine. There are a lot of activities that we rotate through. Parts #3 likes, parts he doesn't but he has started recognizing sight words in other things we're reading which is making this mama proud and he really feels like he's learning to read, just the confidence builder he was needing to move forward down this path.

Links ::

Creekside Learning :: inspiration and lego gondola idea
Homeschool Share :: nocturnal animals and other printables
1+1+1=1 :: Animal ABC and You Can Read

Linking Up ::


Michelle said...

Looks great, Stacy! Love the cake (yum). Your fill-in the blank poem is great, too. And thank you for mentioning that you studied nocturnal animals - there is not many choices for science in this row and I was feeling at a loss for ideas. :)

Desiree said...

I really like your fill-in the blank poem. Do you mind if I type it up for our row? Great ideas! I like your relaxed fiar activities too.