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Naturally Educational » Archive for March 2011

Digging for Knowledge

Digging for Knowledge

What can you learn digging around in dirt?  A whole lot! We’ll be learning about plants and flowers this spring and what better place to start than dirt? Pin It In my last post, I spoke a bit about the pedagogical theory behind experiential, tactile learning. Children are filing the experience away as part of their wealth of knowledge.  The experience creates the genuine need and desire for new vocabulary, concepts, and other lessons.  The ideas and facts … Read entire article »

Filed under: 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), Ecology, Featured, Science, Spring, Touch

Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Just Playing Princess?

Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Just Playing Princess?

Has Cinderella devoured the self-esteem of our daughters? Do young women today have more or fewer options in forging their own identity? I confess to a great ambivalence about the princess culture that has seized our young girls. For the most part, when I write a post about a current issue, I have strong opinions on the topic.  I’m open to convincing arguments, and reserve the right to change my mind, but I at least begin from … Read entire article »

Filed under: Media

D is for Dirt, R is for Rocks

D is for Dirt, R is for Rocks

Pin It Getting physical with your learning is a great way to reinforce academic lessons. The connection is especially strong with language and literacy. The experience reinforces the memory of the letters and words and creates a deep connection. We’ve also been exploring the universe of literacy in WordWorld–a television program on PBS that supports pre-reading skills. The characters on the show (“WordFriends”) are formed out of the words that are their names.  They solve challenges by … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1-2 (Toddlers), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), Bodily-kinesthetic, Featured, Literacy, Touch

Shaving Cream Art (Tactile Fun!)

Shaving Cream Art (Tactile Fun!)

Pin It Studies have shown that students physically involved with learning score higher on subsequent exams–and we’re not just talking about the toddler, preschooler, kindergartner set.  The effects are demonstrable even at the college and graduate level. Research into cognitive development strongly suggests that this sort of physical stimulation during learning builds a deeper understanding of academic skills. Children in need of speech therapy may especially benefit from speech activities using tactile sensations. Plus…it is just plain fun … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1-2 (Toddler), 1-2 (Toddlers), 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), Art, Bodily-kinesthetic, Featured, Touch

In Your Easter Bonnet, With All the Frills Upon It

In Your Easter Bonnet, With All the Frills Upon It

Although it may be a bit early for Easter, this bonnet is a fun way to welcome spring. Pin It We made this craft last year so I don’t have a lot of detailed photos but the instructions are fairly simple. Materials: paper plate paper bowl tissue paper glue Easter and spring embellishments (silk flowers, butterflies, etc.) stapler ribbon Directions: 1. Cut out the center of a paper plate. 2. On either side of the hole in the paper plate, staple a length of ribbon long enough so … Read entire article »

Filed under: 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergartners), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), Featured, History and Culture, Spring

March Lion and Lamb Masks

March Lion and Lamb Masks

We’ve been enjoying our March poem and updating our calendar with the lion or lamb to match the weather–and the weather has given us plenty of opportunities to choose both!  Last week we had 75 degree weather and then it snowed yesterday! We made lion and lamb masks to help us with our daily weather observations. Pin It Lion Masks Materials: paper plate orange and yellow construction paper, cut in 1″ x 4″ strips brown construction paper (for ears) glue (we used Elmer’s … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1-2 (Toddler), 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergartners), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), Featured, Spring, Weather

Irish Spring: A Shamrock Sun Catcher Craft for Kids

Irish Spring: A Shamrock Sun Catcher Craft for Kids

Hope the green is sprouting up in your neighborhood!  Have you found any four-leaf clovers? We are starting to see the signs of spring in our yard and so our crafts are turning green, too!  And this craft is green in more ways than one–it re-purposes cardboard tubes from toilet paper or paper towel or gift wrap rolls. Pin It Materials: cardboard tube green paint green glitter green tissue paper green chenille stem X-ACTO knife single hole punch Directions: 1. Cut three segments from your cardboard tube. … Read entire article »

Filed under: 0-3 (Babies and Toddlers), 1-2 (Toddler), 1-2 (Toddlers), 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergartners), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), Art, Featured, History and Culture, Spring

Shamrocker

Shamrocker

In addition to all the rainbows appearing in our house, some shamrocks have sprouted up. I think perhaps a visit from his wee self may be next! Pin It We made a beaded shamrock to hang from our chandelier.  My daughter wanted to add some other colors besides green so I showed her the Irish flag and we decided to add a little white and orange. Materials pony beads (green — we also used some clear and orange beads) 2 … Read entire article »

Filed under: 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergartners), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), Featured, History and Culture

The Colors of the Wind (Windsock Craft and Charity Book Drive)

The Colors of the Wind (Windsock Craft and Charity Book Drive)

Pin It This weekend, we finished up our Book Drive for Reach Out and Read.  I’m waiting on the final count but feel confident there were well over 700 books collected, possibly quite a bit more, over triple the number I was able to collect last year. We owe our success to the support of Lovin’ Logistics and Joel DeGregorio, owner of the Mt. Sinai The UPS Store franchise. He provided not only a public drop-off for … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1-2 (Toddler), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), Featured, Spring, Weather

I Can Eat a Rainbow!

I Can Eat a Rainbow!

Pin It I’m no nutritionist but I know that eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables is a great way to get a variety of healthy vitamins! While we are studying rainbows, we are also checking out nature’s spectrum of colors. And vivid colors in the flesh of fruits and vegetables signals a high level of nutrients. Getting children to eat healthy is wonderful but teaching them how to make healthy choices is even better. “Eat a Rainbow” … Read entire article »

Filed under: All Ages, Featured, Home Arts, Science, Taste