# Napatree Point & Math Game Mistake

In planning for today’s lesson, I read ahead in our newly bought book Math for Smarty Pants by Marilyn Burns, I found a the game \$1.00 word search. The \$1.00 word search is to find words in the book that equal a dollar by giving each letter a cent value: A = 1 cent, B= 2 cents and so on. So, I thought it would be fun and a great way to combine spelling and math together if we came up with our own words and added them up to see if we could make a \$1.00 word.  I printed out the alphabet and labeled each letter with the appropriate value.

Within the chapter is says there is a Halloween word worth one dollar so he started coming up with words and adding them up, he came close, but no dollar! “Mummies” was the closest we came but it was over by one cent! After several more words, he decided to line them all up in ABC order…. Aha!! Mom! you missed a number here! – I had skipped a number while labeling them! So, Mummies was the word after all since I had made the mistake in numbering them!! ;p Guess I do not do my best prep work at 6am! But it was fun just the same and he actually learned a double lesson…. one number off can throw the whole thing!

Next we watched a video on New England which tied in both History and Geography.  The tour guide on the video stopped at many different historical places within New England and talked to the heritage of the area.

Moving on: At our most recent visit to the library, the Librarian asked what grade my oldest was in, to which I responded, Well, we homeschool, so he’s 3/4th grade I’d say.  She says, I thought you might with this selection of book ;)- would he be interested in joining our book club for 4/5 ers? There is a group of about 11 of that 8 are homeschoolers. Sure! So, we read the first chapter in his book club book titled Dial – a – Ghost by Eva Ibbotson.

We then got ready and headed out to hike along Napatree Point Conservation Area, a trail along the Narragansett Bay and the Ocean. The area is filled with history and provides a habitat for many species/bird watching.  It was absolutely beautiful, quiet and peaceful at this time of year.

Just a few locals were out and about. On the beach only a few other people were roaming and picnicking/dog walking. We did get to see many birds, sea creatures, shells and rocks as well as tons of beautiful butterflies!

# Sunflowers

We took a little trip to a local farm last night to see the sunflower fields. Each year they hold what’s called “Sunflowers for Wishes” a fundraiser for the Make-A-Wish foundation. We love to participate in events that go towards a good cause!

As a home-school parent, we of course turn almost everything into a learning experience- so, we  engaged in dialogue all about farms, charity, flowers, and the weather! It is very inspiring to just look out upon the beauty of the fields and the excitement of the crowd as you see tripods  set up all along the edge of the fields, people sitting along the stone wall looking out, couples old and young, infants and children all posing for pictures together, family groups eating ice cream and enjoying each others company….

quintessential New England if you will!

It’s very beautiful and great for taking beautiful photos! Ice cream, tractor rides and some animals too! Take a trip if you’re in the area!

# Camping Lake Side

My oldest son and I camped outdoors last night- first time for him. He’s been dying to try it but just a little to scared to actually spend the night outside.  My sister’s children have been asking as well, so she planned a camp out in her yard for all of us to “try it out.”  It ended up being a success- all children made it through the night, and seemed to have really enjoyed it!

The festivities began with some swimming and other water games they kept coming up with together. Followed by dinner, making S’mores (watching them hunt for sticks was amusing), lots of “glowing” games, reading a camping story together in the tent and sparklers. Concluded by star gazing!

Time for S’mores!

See my sparklers!?

Glow stick ring toss

Story Time

This camping things not to shabby! 🙂 Relaxed

Swimming together. Played games such as marco polo and other group games

Getting the fire started

Dinosaur State Park and Arboretum, Rocky Hill, Connecticut, USA. Close-up of dinosaur prints. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dinosaur State Park and Arboretum, Rocky Hill, Connecticut, USA. General view of dinosaur prints. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We decided to take advantage of the beautiful day, with a last minute thought to head out to Dinosaur State Park.

We had the company of my sister and her three boys joining us, a total of 5 enthusiastic boys!

When we first arrived, we headed indoors first for a hands-on look at dinosaurs and the different types of footprints and fossils on how to “read” and study them. For example, we explored one station that explained how to determine if the tracks showed a pack with young ones traveling, or if it suggested that a dinosaur was running.

Next up was a snake Q and A outdoors in the small ampitheater. The children and parents all gathered around to hear all about the snakes habitat and how his environment conditions are very crucial to these animals as well as other animals.  It was interesting. We headed back inside to continue exploring in the classroom- two animals on site, crafts, puzzles, puppets, and made footprint bookmarks as a souvenir! Then the Bill Nye movie started, featuring Volcanoes! As you  can imagine boys and volcanoes go together! They all sat and watched this short film and came out with many theories of their own! Think we’ll be doing another volcano experiment in the near future 🙂

Picnic lunch outdoors, then we were off for a hike on a couple of the trails! First stop at the butterfly garden, which was apparently a very peaceful area as the older boys all began to spontaneously meditate! We continued along on the swamp trail, spotting frogs and various plants. The trail was very pretty and had information boards posted along the way. As we neared the ending we could see the boys all still had plenty of energy so we decided to explore another trail. We set out on the wildflower trail next (which ended up being about a 30-40 min hike) beautiful flowers, trees and sounds to take in. Even spotted a rabbit who quickly ran for cover! We listened to different bird songs, spotted some birds, bugs and insects, examined and listened to ideas on how and why this big tree we came upon was turned over with it’s roots as equal in height as the older boys.  We spotted different “faces” in the trees trunk- “bat”, “scary face”,” owl ” and a “spider.” By the time we ended this trail it was time to head home!

Think we’ll return again soon though! Maybe we’ll bring supplies and make a fossil of our own on the next trip!

If you’re in the area, definitely stop by for a visit, there is so much to do there!

# First Day of Summer Break

A rainy day that cancelled our weekly happy homeschooler’s hike.  So instead we went and did errands then watched a movie together as I worked on a book list containing our favorite books from this past year. Then started my new daily journal here!

We started this past year doing mostly eclectic homeschooling and as I researched and observed my sons learning style and what I found I liked most about homeschooling..it was a no brain-er! We slowly transitioned into the Charlotte Mason method of homeschooling! Sitting a reading books aloud is and has always been one of my favorite things to do!

Growing up my mother always took us for trips to the library and then read our favorites to us each night. I believe this is where my love of great stories comes from. It was my favorite time of the day, just sitting together on my bed and hearing the stories and sharing laughs. My all time favorite as a child was Muffin, Brown bear and Me (as you see in the photo) My mother found the book and gave it to me as a gift not so long ago. A true treasure from my childhood!

I see why the Charlotte Mason method spoke volumes to me. I have always treasured the time spent reading books and love to hear a great story and retained information much better through a story as well as hands-on. It didn’t take to long to see these were two learning styles my oldest son enjoys as well. As for my youngest, he’s two, so we’re still exploring everything!!

So, as we move forward into the next “school year” we will share all the great stories we read and all the great hands-on activities we get our hands into!

So, please I encourage you to follow along with us on our journey!