Crafty Monday:France Country Study, Valentine’s, & Snow Day

In this post: Our homeschool group has a Valentine’s party/country study of France, I made a Valentine Heart Luminary, a legal site where you can read kid’s books for free, several crafts & science experiments, and a pretend snow day! Also a recipe for madeleines!

Hello dear ones!

In homeschool last week we continued our love memory verses. We also began a study of Queen Esther in our Bob Jones devotional. I guess we got a head start on Purim. Here is a link to last week’s post with the heart memory verses:

Crafty Monday: God’s Love & Hearts Galore! Plus Mardi Gras Celebration…

This week we continued the heart theme in our crafts. We made this heart magnet with scrapbook paper, conversation hearts, and magnets. You can find this on my Valentine’s Pinterest. I’ll put the link at the end.

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We played a conversation’s hearts game that was simply for the fun of eating them. My friend Rachel had a neat math game over at her blog (using the conversation hearts). Link here: http://homeschoolingmom2mags.blogspot.com/2013/02/valentine-math.html

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Valentine’s Luminary

Very simple: a mason jar, tissue paper, ribbon, and modge podge.

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Michael and I read several books for free at http://www.wegivebooks.org/books

We are members now (also free). We read several snow books for Friday, our “Snow day”. I really enjoyed this book called “See a Heart. Share a Heart”. Michael has been finding “hearts” everywhere since then.

http://www.wegivebooks.org/books/see-a-heart-share-a-heart/reader

Our homeschool schedule has changed a bit since February. Back in January I think I told you I wanted to simplify. Well, I’m not sure I’ve simplified but I have organized. Instead of majoring in every subject and doing crafts every single day I made each day different. Every day there is devotionals, spelling, math, and reading but we specialize in certain areas each day. Here is our game plan (Lord willing):

Monday- Crafts and cooking

Tuesday- typing and science projects

Wednesday- Math & Music

Thursday- homeschool group time and/or geography and social studies/ history

Friday- Language arts, nature, and/or health

So for instance it’s Wednesday. We would do something special for math…like a game or even a math craft. Thankfully we can be flexible because cooking has happened on every day but Monday lol. It’ll probably happen this Saturday since we’re making hamentaschen (Haman ears)  for Purim.

So for cooking last week, I taught Michael how to make mac n’ cheese. Every kid needs to know how to do that, right!

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He made us a lovely candlelit supper. He lit a match for the first time. He was super excited!

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He set the table and we had a lovely simple dinner. Good job, buddy!

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For science we did a few things. First we did an experiment with carnations. I remember doing this in school. You just put food coloring in the water. If you want the flower to have two colors in it then you have to split the stem and put it into both jars.

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It took way longer than expected for this to work. The blue was nice but I noticed when the red finally got color that it was orange! Later, I found out that the hubby had added more red but first accidentally used yellow….hence, the rusty orange color. I was going for pink…oh well.

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We finally tried out our Discovery Kids tornado machine. Then Michael watched a show about tornado chasers.

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For music we used conversation hearts to put the notes on the staff paper (meaning the candies were the notes). Honestly, we had not looked at the piano book since December (*shame*).  So rather than jump right into playing, we just looked at the music and figured out the notes. Maybe he will play the song this week.  Little fingers get rusty when they haven’t played in awhile. Please check out my music section on Pinterest. I found a ton of great resources for teaching the basic elements of music.

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Our homeschool group is awesome :). Our country study of France happened to come on Valentine’s Day. Okay, it was planned. Still, they went perfect together. We learned about the city of love while learning the origins of Valentine’s.

Everyone brought french food. I made lemon madeleines drizzled with chocolate and powdered sugar.

Lemon-Glazed Madeleine Recipe

I was happy how they turned out because the first time I made them I burnt the edges :(. Anywho, I ditched the glaze and just put the lemon juice in the cookies. Then as I said, I drizzled them with chocolate and powdered sugar. Voila!

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Mmmmmm, you know you want to make some! The kiddos really liked them. I made the batter the night before and baked them that morning because they get soggy if you don’t eat them right away.

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We taped “God’s Conversation Hearts” onto the candy boxes and gave them to each family.

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The table full of books about France.

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All the yummy food 🙂 We even had goat cheese, which I tried for the first time. See the mini Eiffel Tower?

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Hannah talked to the kids about France and read them a story about a french kitty.

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Here’s Rachel sporting her stylish french hat while eating a madeleine 🙂

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I brought a book about St. Valentine to teach the kids the meaning behind the holiday. After eating and sitting thru stories they needed to stretch before they were ready to listen.

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So we stretched….

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and got out all the wiggles…..yep, it reminded me of my time at an Early Learning Center.

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And that’s also where I learned about listening ears…I never got it out of my system. I came up with the special “listening eyes” though….sounds silly but it just means to look at the person who you’re listening too.

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I had the kids answer questions along and along and even make the soldiers’ footsteps by pounding the floor. We had to stop half way and get the wiggles out some more. That seemed to help and I think they heard most of the story! ;P

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Michael and his buddy Liam

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Then the kiddos decorated Valentine’s mailboxes. Hannah’s son, Liam, had a very kewl monster box.

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We were simple this time. I thought our tissue box looked nice enough so Michael just stuck foam heart stickers on it.

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Eric made an alien box.

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Maggie, Rachel’s daughter, made a sweet robot box.

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Olivia, Hannah’s daughter,  made a mermaid themed box.

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Then passports were stamped. We keep forgetting ours so I just had a paper stamped.

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Michael with his good buddy Olivia.

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Michael and Maggie

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The kids then went around and delivered their valentine’s. I’m so glad we have a group because I did love the parties in public school. It’s nice we can homeschool but come together for fun events.

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So we never made an ash cross on our arm or forehead. We just didn’t get to it. I tried to put together the Lent centerpiece I told you about. It’s not as pretty but it kinda reminds me of the desert. We got our Lenten tree devotional book at the end of the week and our Lent Calendar. It’s very weird having all these holidays at once but somehow it’ll work…

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Friday for our Nature study we had a snow day! 🙂 We have yet to see any real snow but maybe…

Anywho, we started out with a  sugar cube igloo craft. I would be lying if I said it was easy. I didn’t follow the directions to a tee so…

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We outlined a shape on paper then glued sugar cubes around it. We kept adding layers but it wanted to fall. So I had to put cardboard in the middle to keep everything up. I ended up finishing it because we were both so frustrated.

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The next “craft” was simple….sigh. Michael made snow sculptures using marshmallows.

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We then had hot chocolate with marshmallows. Like I said before, we read a few snow books on wegivebooks.org

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My sister got us this wonderful fake snow for Christmas. Look at it before we add water….a small pile.

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We added water and it GREW! It’s also cold and doesn’t melt! I think we should buy a ton and fill the back yard! LOL

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Well, it’s not safe to eat etc…so it’s probably best we keep it in a container. Add a few toy penguins and we have a snow box! Voila!

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Gumby ended up holding the igloo up. I threw it away later because I figured the sugar would attract bugs. Oh well…

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Well, God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

Ps: Tune in next week for Purim crafts. If you want ideas for this Purim season check out my Purim section on Pinterest. By the way, here are my Pinterest links for these projects. Remember email subscribers to come to my blog to see the links.

Purim

Valentine’s

Music

Science

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