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Naturally Educational » Senses

Moving and Grooving to Music Around the World #SmartSummer

Moving and Grooving to Music Around the World #SmartSummer

Music is a big part of our lives. My grandfather was a professional musician and my daughter loves to play piano. And music is a fun way to gain insight into other societies.  As part of my study of history, I delved into how music reflects culture. So, as part of our Me on the Map week, we enjoyed traditional music from around the globe! Since this (history and culture through the lens of art) is my … Read entire article »

Filed under: All Ages, Bodily-kinesthetic, Featured, Geography, History and Culture, Music, Musical, Performing Arts and Theater, Smart Summer Challenge, Sound

B is for Beans

B is for Beans

After our Bean Plant Life Cycle Experiments, we used beans to make a letter “B” and spell the word “beans”. This is a simple activity that can be modified for almost any letter and small material. It is a fun way to build manual dexterity, practice tracing, and make the connection between the letter, the sound, and the meaning. And it is easy to adapt for more advanced learners by allowing them to spell out the … Read entire article »

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

No-Sew Lavender Sachet (Guest Post)

No-Sew Lavender Sachet (Guest Post)

While I am on a brief “maternity leave”, I am welcoming some of my favorite activity, craft, and education bloggers to share a post on Naturally Educational. Today, Maggie of Red Ted Art shares how to make “no-sew” lavender bags. Personally, lavender is one of my favorites for both its scent and colors. Every summer we enjoy the lavender labyrinth at Garden of Eve and bring fresh lavender into our home! Hello! I am Maggy and … Read entire article »

Filed under: 5-6 (Kindergarten), 6-8 (Early Elementary), Featured, Home Arts, Smell, Summer

April Showers (Water Cycle Experiments)

April Showers (Water Cycle Experiments)

Mommy, why does it rain? Or, lately, the question is: Why does it drizzle, rain, and pour so much around here? April is the month of showers and we are eagerly awaiting the May flowers those storms will bring. We did two experiments to learn more about why it rains. Experiment #1: Cotton Ball Clouds Question: What happens when a cloud becomes full of moisture? Hypothesis: It will rain. Materials: cotton ball small tray or bowl filled with water Procedure: 1. Ask your child to describe … Read entire article »

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

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? 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 can … Read entire article »

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

D is for Dirt, R is for Rocks

D is for Dirt, R is for Rocks

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 building … 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!)

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 to … 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

I Can Eat a Rainbow!

I Can Eat a Rainbow!

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” is … Read entire article »

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

Chocolate-Covered Pretzels

Chocolate-Covered Pretzels

Valentine’s Day may be over but we’re still enjoying some of the treats we made.  The biggest hit was these chocolate-covered pretzels my daughter made.  They are so simple and the heat is so low to melt the chocolate that your preschooler or even toddler can do them with very little help.  You can customize the sprinkles for other holidays, too. All you need is Baker’s Chocolate, Pretzels (twists or rods), and sprinkles. 1. Melt chocolate on … Read entire article »

Filed under: All Ages, Bodily-kinesthetic, Featured, Home Arts, Science, Smell, Taste, Winter

S is for Snow

S is for Snow

We haven’t done a lot of alphabet work because I believe in letting the kids’ interest and the rhythms of the season drive the activities we do together. My oldest seemed to just pluck the alphabet from the air–a puzzle, a few refrigerator magnets, and an alphabet book or two and she just knew all of her A,B,C’s. Since my son has shown a strong interest in letters recently, and we’ve had a great time playing in … Read entire article »

Filed under: 0-3 (Babies and Toddlers), 1-2 (Toddlers), 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), Featured, Literacy, Touch, Weather, Winter