Maine: The Treasure Chest

I mentioned yesterday that I didn’t find a whole lot of books on Maine.  Most of the ones I found were about light houses.  Apparently, there are a lot of light houses up in Maine.

 

This particular one isn’t exactly a true story, but it is based off a compilation of several true stories.

The Sea Chest is a story about a young girl and her family who live on an island tending the lighthouse.  One night a bad storm washes a sea chest up on their island, and what was found inside.

 

I previewed this book a couple of days beforehand, and fell in love with the story.  It’s so touching and is a great multi-generational story of love.  I don’t want to give away any of the details, but it was so sweet.

 

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Before we read the book I had them guess what was going to be found in the book. 

 

As you can guess they mostly thought treasure, gold, shells.  Batman guessed a manta ray, just to be silly.

 

Afterwards they drew what was really in the chest.

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Finally they drew what they would put in the chest.  This related to the key plot point of the story, but I figured you probably can’t guess what Princess drew.

PRINTABLE: WHAT I FOUND IN THE TREASURE CHEST

 

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It was a bittersweet day for us because one of the families in our group is moving to South Austin and so they won’t be joining us regularly.  I’m gonna miss getting together with them weekly, but we’re gonna still get together from time to time.

 

I’m sure God will bring another family to join our little group, that’s how we got the family that just moved.  I ran into her at the library while getting books for our geography group.

I’m gonna link up to these fun parties:
learning laboratory at mama smilesShibley Smiles

Maine: Wakame Gatherers

I probalby wouldn’t have classified this as a Maine book because it takes place mainly in Japan, but I was VERY short on books about Maine.

 

VERY short.

 

But, it does do a comparison of Japan and Maine, and it’s an incredibly cute story.  CRAZY CUTE!

 

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The Wakame Gatherers is a story about a girl from two cultures.  One of her parents is from Japan and one is from the United States.  She spends time with both grandmothers.

 

This particular time, the grandmother from Maine is visiting Japan and learning about how to harvest seaweed and the many different types and how it is used.

 

And there was my tie in……

 

In the book they compare different ways sea weed is used in the two countries.  The main thing my kids remember.  Sea weed is used in Miso soup and in ice cream.

 

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After reading everyone drew/wrote 4 different ways sea weed is used by people.  Then they colored their favorite ways with their favorite color.  The boys expanded on this to also color their least favorite way with their least favorite color……  Hence the purple/pink monstrosity up above.

 

Most common favorite thing: ice cream.

 

There wasn’t a common least favorite.  My boys were all in favor of miso soup, another kid loved sushi.  It was a fun discussion.

 

PRINTABLE: HOW WE USE SEA WEED

50 State Study: Indiana

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In order of popularity with the kids:

Indie 500– let’s face it any activity that involves building with Legos is always a hit…….

Raggedy Ann and Andy– Who’d have thought designing paper dolls would be such a hit?

Creating a floating house– because my kids always like peg dolls, who doesn’t?

My Freedom place– looking back at this week, it was an amazing hit, all of these activities were popular

 

SCORE!

 

There are some times where it’s nice to have a simple geography week, okay this wasn’t one of them, but it was somewhat simple………

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linking over to: Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns, and All Things Beautiful 

or theoretically I will because I’m on a GREAT ADVENTURE now (who heard Steven Curtin Chapman start singing when I said that?)

Illinois: Hog Music

I must say the children’s librarian at our library orders some of the best books.  They may not have the most obvious way to do an art project or writing project connected to it, but the stories are wonderful.
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A little girl and her family move out West to Illinois.  Her aunt refuses to move out there because there’s nothing out there but “wind and hog music.”  The aunt sends a small present out to her niece, but along the way it falls out of the mail wagon.  This is the story of how the present got there and what was added along the way.

Which of course led to the question, what would you pack to send as a birthday present to someone far away, and what would you have added in to the package you found?
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Well as we snacked on our popcorn (you’ll see in a few weeks about that).

We talked about what would we give her and what would we add into a present that was about the size of a shoe box if we were able to do so.

Can you guess what the boys added?
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Surprisingly it wasn’t just weapons, but there were quite a few as you would expect from a group of mostly boys who all love Lego Ninjago.  My boys also added stuffed animals.  Lots of stuffed animals, and a few weapons, and food.  They had popcorn on their mind.
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Meanwhile Princess happily colored away and drew ribbons and dresses and dolls for her imagined friend who was getting all of this packed up in a shoe box.

As I was thinking about this, it would be a good planning project for Operation Christmas Child.

The printable we used can be found here: Hog Music printable.

I’m gonna link up to these fun parties:
learning laboratory at mama smilesShibley Smiles

50 State Study: Louisiana

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Louisiana is a fun state to study, we spent a couple of weeks on it and I feel like there is still so much we could have done.

Going clockwise, starting in the top left:

Louisiana state picture

My plan to save the levies- this is one I never blogged about for some reason, but we talked about how New Orleans is below sea level and the devastation from Hurricane Katrina.  Afterwards the kids drew their plans to fix the levies.  For whatever reason Princess decided they really needed to rebuild it with stronger bricks.

 

Down in Louisiana– I seriously love Johnette Downing’s books, and this was one of the first ones we read.  We also did a project with Chef Creole, but that has disappeared into the nether

 

Battle for New Orleans- I mentioned this battle and song when we first learned about Andrew Jackson for Tennessee.  This time we talked about it some more and then we drew who they would draft into their army.  My kids were so amused by the crocodiles in the song they all decided to draft crocodiles……

 

Blues invented in Louisiana-Any excuse to play big band and blues music to my kids is always welcome.  My kids are going to grow up with very interesting taste in music (as I’m typing this my playlist changed from “Into the Woods” to “Chicago.”).  They drew all in blues to illustrate what it sounded like.  It led to some fun illustrations.

 

Not shown in the picture because certain 5 year old girls lose things and “forget” to glue them in, I’m not naming any names……..

 

Study of crawdads

Chef Creole from the Johnette Downing books…….

Mardi Gras masks……  This one has disappeared into their rooms, and has been repaired many many times by me.  I might break down and make one out of fabric.

A whale for Jean Laffitte (who will reappear when we get to Texas, apparently he founded Galveston)

 

Okay that last one wouldn’t have fit in her book anyways, but it has been interesting finding bits and pieces around the house………

Mississippi: Freedom School Yes!

Every now and then I run into a book that is wonderful, but doesn’t easily lend itself to an activity, but I still want to share it.  This is one of those books.

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It tells the story of the Freedom Schools that happened in Mississippi back in the summer of 1964.

 

This is a compilation story, it assembles facts from several different  people who were teachers for the summer and several of the cities where it took place to make one story.

 

Mississippi Freedom school

 

It tells the brave story of one young woman who comes down to be the teacher and one young girl who is brave enough to go to school, even if she’s threatened.

 

Then it tells of all the great stories of African Americans.  It tells about Crispus Attucks the first person killed in the American Revolution.

 

Harriet Tubman, who led many of her people to freedom.

 

Of Benjamin Bannaker, who was the son of a slave man and an indentured servant who both became free, and how he designed Washington D.C. (which by the way that family’s story is also amazing, and another book I never wrote about, but loved).

 

Nothing I could design would compare with the bravery in these stories.  I do not want to trifle with it.  So, it was simple, cut it out and read about these brave people.

 

And sometimes that is all you need to do.

Childhood to do list: WATER FIGHT!

water fight
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Step 1: Fill a large bucket (or cooler) full of water and sponges.  If you’re fancy make these from Inner Child Fun (what I originally bought the sponges for).

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Step 2:  Grab as many water filled sponges as you can.
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Step 3: Start throwing sponges as fast as you can.
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You’re guaranteed to be told, “Did you know that you’re my best Mommy ever?”

Of course if you’re participating and trying to get pictures at the same time, that means you get lots of pictures like this:
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And after all is said and done, take some time to build with the sponges and swing on your swing.
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50 State Study: Ohio


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We completed all of our activities for Ohio in one week, but there were several books I wasn’t able to fit in that I wanted to do something with, but I didn’t have quite enough for a full second week, so we moved on.  I’ll probably talk about those more in my post at ABC & 123.
What’s included in the lapbook:

My Great Invention– Ohio is the home to the Invention Museum, and I found a great book about inventions taking place in Ohio.  The kids designed their Lego creation and then wrote about it in their book.

Covered Wagon– Anything that is a cut and paste is a hit around here.  This was no exception.  The boys loved figuring out how to best protect people and what they REALLY needed.  The girls loved filling their wagon with kitchen stuff.

Neil Armstrong, what I want be when I grow up– After reading about how hard Neil Armstrong worked to become an astronaut we talked about what we need to do to get the job we really want when we grow up.
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State Symbols pages – another ladybug.  I really wanted to do something with the trilobites, but couldn’t think of a good activity.  Anyone have a good trilobite activity?

50 State Study: Tennessee

Tennessee was one of those states where I had lots of ideas, but none of them worked quite right……..  Sigh.

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What all is in here:

Swamp Angel (Tarnation hit the stars and looked like this)- This is a super cute tall tale, and I’m always a sucker for tall tales.  I look forward to Montana when we get to read about her further adventures.

 

Sequoyah– The man who brought writing to the Cherokee people.  You can see our plan for this on the lower left hand side.  This activity was really a bit over my kids, but it was a good stretch for them.

 

Andrew Jackson– I still find this president amusing.  I don’t know why.  I got to bring him up again when we got to Louisiana, that was fun.

 

Luck with Potatoes– Another Tennessee tall tale, or maybe this author just made it up, either way it’s a fun story about a farmer who has some bad luck until he plants potatoes.  I highly recommend this book if your kid likes silly books.

 

Tennessee State Symbols– Princess was happy because they have a state horse.

 

Casey Jones– This was one I knew the name, but didn’t know too much about this real life hero.  That’s always a fun surprise for me to discover something I didn’t know too much about.

 

Done, but not included in the lapbook, which I guess is really more of a notebook.

Davy Crockett peg dolls–  I found a great book for this, and I really wanted to make coon skin caps, but wasn’t sure how to do that in a way that made sense with 6 other kids there, and that could be completed in a timely manner.

 

So the Davy Crockett peg doll was born.  He’s kinda disturbing.

 

 

Banjo Granny– the world’s cutest book, and each time we looked at the illustrations we found more in it.

 

Afterwards we made a banjo for our dolls with a popsicle stick and some brown card stock.  Very fun and very popular.

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So any suggestions of things I could have added?  Or ways to do this better?  I always like to add in people’s suggestions for when I write about this over at ABC & 123.  There were a few things I didn’t have the right books for, but over all it was a fun idea.

I’m gonna link this over at All Things Beautiful and her geography/history link up.

50 state study: Vermont

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Vermont had some really fun books to go with it, and a few that weren’t specifically Vermont, but fit in with things they were known for:

Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream– let me tell you, any book and activity that includes ice cream is quite heartily approved of.

 

John Deere tractors (which looks to be missing from this page)- if you go to the post there are several suggestions for great books.

 

Champy- Vermont’s very own version of the Loch Ness Monster, Christy, who is now blogging over at Snacks and Stories, turned me on to the idea of Champy.  We used Mysterious Tadpole, which is really about the Loch Ness Monster, but it worked just fine.  I also have to add, I LOVE stories like this.

 

Nora’s Ark– super cute true story, and it gave my kids a lot to think about for what they would save if they had to leave their house.

 

Tricking the Tally Man– mwa ha ha, bring in math and history all in one well written and illustrated book, SCORE!

 

I’m gonna link this over to Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns and her reading linkie.