Kindergarten Home School Week 9: Wednesday

Home School 42 a

It was such a busy Wednesday that we never even got around to daily routines like the Lexia ELA platform online. But innovative ideas prompted by Travis’s K-to-1st summer workbook kept things fun and tantrum-free.

9-9.30: Math. Travis’ workbook page involved coloring in shapes (both flat like a square and 3-D like a cone), on an ice cream truck image. We made it hands-on with an ice cream playset the kids have. Travis even turned baby sister’s food truck into his ice cream truck! I had hoped to use the opportunity for more math (like addition or subtraction problems), but he just wanted to play. Not worth a battle…

Home School 42 b

9.30-10: STEAM. After an encyclopedia page on bugs (creepy-crawlies!), we watched the QR video and then made a firefly craft. We also pulled out an old bug set with a magnifying glass for further exploration.

Home School 42 e

10-10.30: Snack/recess. Travis got involved with some of little sister’s tube play.

10.30-11: ELA. Travis loved writing in his Star Wars book, thrilled that he was forming complete sentences. There was also a quick page on letter H in the summer workbook.

Home School 42 c

11-1: Lunch/free play.

1-1.30: Outside: In honor of National Frog Jumping Day (yes that’s a thing!) we played “jump like a frog” hopscotch.

Home School 42 g

Veronika learned to ribbit and hop, too!

Home School 42 d

1.30-2: Class Zoom! The class went around sharing what they are thankful for, and Travis thanked the bees and pollination.

2-2.30: Counting. We finished the day with a return to math because his 1st Grade Star Wars math workbook arrived and he was so excited. (I hadn’t even intended to open this up until summer!) After filling in numbers up to 120, we played “Light Saber Interrupted Counting”. One person started to count, but if tagged by the opponent’s light saber, the tagger took over. This was a great way to trick him into counting so high, purely for fun!

Hoe School 42 h

After that we traded in lessons for cooking! His bedtime story was a video of his teacher reading Peter’s Chair.

Fun with Toilet Paper Rolls

Fun with Toilet Tubes (2)

After building towers with toilet paper tubes, I helped Veronika discover another fun way to upcycle rolls today. I originally planned to tape together toilet paper tubes, but decided longer paper towel rolls were sturdier for this particular activity. Duct-tape as many as you like (or have stockpiled!) together securely in a long line.

Fun with Toilet Tubes (1)

I placed the tube line about midway up our stairs, aiming the bottom into an empty toy bin.

Fun with Toilet Tubes (4)

Depending how old your kids are, you can make this chain even longer and go all the way to the top of the stairs. But I was worried about Veronika’s safety, so we kept ours shorter. I showed her how to put a toy car into the tube, and then whee!

Fun with Toilet Tubes (3)

It landed in the bin at the bottom. As soon as she realized the cause-and-effect, she loved slotting the cars in and waiting for them to land.

Fun with Toilet Tubes (6)

What a delight!

Fun with Toilet Tubes (5)

The bucket was angled in such a way that we couldn’t see them land very well, so I rotated the tube and the cars drove out directly at the bottom of the stairs. Arguably this was even more enjoyable!

Fun with Toilet Tubes (8)

I also made a short, hand-held version that was easier for her to slot a car in and instantly see it drop through.

Fun with Toilet Tubes (9)

She loved doing this on the floor for a while, with lots of vrooming noises to go along of course. Thank goodness for upcycled tubes!

Fun with Toilet Tubes (11)

Firefly Craft

Firefly Craft (3)

Here’s a cute little firefly your kids can put together, and it really glows! Bonus points: it’s simple as can be to make.

Fold a piece of black construction paper in half, and draw a shape that looks like the head and body of a firefly as seen from the side. I copied a template from Highlights magazine, not quite trusting my artistic skills.

Firefly Craft (1)

Cut out, then use scraps of black paper to add legs. We also cut a small circle from yellow construction paper as the eye, and two yellow antennae.

Firefly Craft (2)

Glue the eye, antennae, and legs on with a glue stick. Now tape a yellow glow stick just under the tail, and watch him flicker!

Firefly Craft (4)

Travis liked the craft so much that we made a quick bee, too!

Firefly Craft (5)

Toilet Paper Tube Towers

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (6)

Since we stocked up on all that toilet paper during social distancing, I figured I might as well start saving the toilet paper tubes once they were empty. We now have quite a stockpile: 12 in total! So when Veronika was fussy before dinner and I needed to keep her little hands busy, I knew exactly what to give her.

I invited her over first just to explore the tubes with her senses. She could roll them, or peek through them. “I see you!” she said.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (5)

I wanted to show her how to build towers with them, though it turned out that the methods I chose were a tad complicated for a toddler. In the first, we stood the tubes upright, then added a thin layer of cardboard, followed by another layer of upright tubes, another layer of cardboard and so on.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (1)

But these towers quickly toppled when the balance wasn’t right… or when Veronika impishly knocked them over! Needless to say, we never built very high.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (3)

Next I showed her how to stack them almost like honeycomb. This too was unstable with an eighteen month old around.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (4)

But she sure loved the way they rolled! So I left her just to play on her own from there, and wouldn’t you know, she found her own method for building a tower. She began placing them so carefully on a board game box as a base.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (9)

Mostly she stopped at one level high, but sometimes she succeeded in stacking two levels.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (8)

She counted the tubes out as she went, as high as “5”!

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (10)

She also said “white” when she noticed the one white roll; I hadn’t realized she knew this color word yet.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (11)

I loved watching her busy at her building, and all the more so because she created her own method for doing so.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (7)

Big brother Travis did later help me stack all those thin cardboard layers up to 4 levels high.

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (13)

He was so proud!

Toilet Paper Tube Towers (14)

Older kids might also like making two notches in the top and bottom of each tube, after which you can build towers that slot together.