Friday, September 30, 2011

Fun Friday

It was a fun Friday in our homeschool. The kids played logic and pattern games for an hour or two. I keep our learning games in banker's boxes in a closet, grouped and labeled according to type of activity. Some of the boxes include: Pattern and Logic games (the one we used), Preschool Activities,  Alphabet Games, Number Activities, Geography and History Games, The Arts (our "band" instruments, as well as art and music games are in here), Colors and Shapes, Science Activities (stuff for experiments and games), and Languages. It helps me keep the supplies organized, and the fact that the games and activities are stored away most of the time makes them more interesting to the kids when they do come out.

 The girls particularly enjoy the games like Mighty Mind, Tangrams, and Shape by Shape that let you make pictures out of various shaped pieces. One of these days, when they are a bit older, I am going to get them one of those magnetic mosaic boards, but I will wait until they are old enough to take care of all those small pieces on their own.

 Tex played Chocolate Fix, a game he got for Christmas (I must admit that I got it for him figuring I'd enjoy it, too!) and found that he is very good at working with spacial relationships and patterns. Cowboy chose one using colored bugs to form patterns. It was a bit under his level, but he enjoyed interacting with the bugs and making funny voices for them to interact with each other!

They also played a few learning games on the computer before going outside. I found some more spatial relationship and thinking skills games to let them try out. 

Here they are: 
Picture Logic (a game of arranging candy in boxes)

There are a few more on my homeschool-for-free site, if you want to check them out. Please feel free to leave a comment if you know of a game your kids like that I haven't listed yet...I know there are plenty of them!

They had fun listening to Pandora while they played with the Brio trains in the boys' room. Have you tried Pandora yet? You can set up "channels" by telling them what the name of a song or an artist that you want to hear more music of a similar nature. Then your new "channel" will play a variety of songs similar to the one you have named (or by similar artists). Tex set up a "channel" based on songs from "They Might Be Giants." Have you heard the Meet the Elements song? It's a hoot. Anyway, you get 40 hours of free Pandora listening a month and it's free to set up an account. We haven't noticed tons of spam, either.

While I was doing chores, Cowboy and Ladybug kept coming to me all excited about the songs they had just heard. It was so cute. My favorite was that one from The Muppet Show that goes, "Manamana...doot doo doo doo doot...Manamana...doot doo doo doo doot." If you've ever heard it, you will know what I mean (I guess that dates me, doesn't it?). If not, well, just take my word that you are missing out and check out the video on You Tube.

After lunch, Boo went down for a nap, Tex went to work for a neighbor, and the Amigos went outside to play. It was a bit cooler, and the mosquitoes (which have been positively horrid here) were not so bad.

We have plans to watch the World's Greatest Train Rides: Egypt video while we eat our pizza tonight, to sort of carry on the theme of trains from earlier this morning. The kids are looking forward to it, since we've been reading about Egypt all week and looking at other resources like Discovery Egypt. Here's a nifty site with "postcard" snapshots of major tourist destinations that is a fun way to see if the kids have been paying attention to what we've been reading (meaning, did they recognize anything?) and here's a tour group site that lists bunches of useful video titles on Egypt that I am going to use in my research for this unit.

And tonight, the most fun thing of all, will be giving Tex his new computer. Shhhhhh...he doesn't know, but his dad is picking it up now. I feel safe telling you because I know he's working outside and will be until his dad gets home. He's going to be thrilled because he's been pricing them for months, ever since we took some of the money out of his educational fund. His dad had a connection who got him an excellent deal on a top of the line HP, which is great, since I think Tex needs a high performing computer to help him learn all the computer languages and programming he is interested in. You can check out some of the resources he will be using (and they are all FREE!) on his homeschooling blog.

I hope you had a fun Friday, too.



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