Shark Week

It's shark week at our house.  I am pretty much certain we are the only family thinking about sharks with Valentine's just a few days away and snow all around us, so feel free to refer to this in August (when Discovery Channel does their version) or perhaps when you get back from spring break in Florida (in that case, I am jealous of you).

How did we decide on sharks?  Well, when we went on our weekly trip to the library, I asked what looked interesting and sharks was the answer.  I have been trying to let my daughter choose the topic, then I do some research via Pinterest to find some interesting activities. 

This is a quick recap of a few of the more interesting things we have done so far.  Hopefully you will be inspired to do a few fun shark activities of your own (and share them with us on Facebook--hint, hint).
First up, the cardboard shark head.  This took me all of 5 minutes to make.  I grabbed a narrow box (thank you Ikea for flat boxes).  I drew a few rough lines where I was hoping to aim.  Grabbed the hubs knife and hacked away the top, with all my digits still in tact--success!  Then I glued on some card stock I chopped into the shape of teeth.

Ok, what does one do with a cardboard shark head?  You feed it paper and felt fish of course.  Paper with site words for the older one to read as she drops them in.  Felt for the baby so when he tastes the fish they don't fall apart.  This is a great activity for the 9-12 month old baby.  He squealed with delight each time he fed the shark.    

This was a hit.  I am always on the lookout for interesting ways to do site words.  We jump on them, we hit them, we feed them to sharks, anything to make the words interesting.

Site words were read 3 or 4 times in one day because the fish got to go in the shark.  We even did them during lunch because she was so excited about the fish.  I promise you, when you let the child choose the topics, homeschooling is much, much easier.

Next up, learning cursive.  I know, I know.  No one is learning cursive in schools because no one uses it.  Perks of homeschooling, you can learn what you want, and my daughter thinks cursive is fancy, so she can be the only 6 year old that learns cursive.

We introduce letters using a salt tray.  She traces the printed letter, then practices in the tray.  After we have made it through all the letters, we will move onto the Handwriting Without Tears version of Wet, Dry, now you Try with the chalkboard, sponge, and chalk set up.

We are learning contractions this week as well.  Throw a shark on the flashcard, and voila it is more interesting.  

We also painted vocabulary words.  My daughter first painted over my writing, then she used another piece of paper to write them on her own.

Part of her math lesson was counting by 7s and 9s.  I demonstrated how to do this activity with her using 5s, since she already can count by 5s.  Again, throw a shark on a flashcard and it is suddenly more interesting.  She also used my home made Montessori beads (made from Perler beads) to help her figure out which number came next.

Finally, we can't forget the little one.  He was always ready to lend a helping hand with all his big sister was doing.  He also played with shaving cream and a little food coloring in a Ziploc bag, checked out some plastic sharks we have and unstacked all the blue Legos we sorted out for him this week.  

How about you?  What are you teaching this week?

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