Friday, September 18, 2009

Apple Picking

Personal note: In our household we are facing a financial crisis. I hear that many others are facing these tough economic times and that we are not alone. That's little consolation when faced with a stack of bills and a paycheck that falls short every other week leaving many bills unpaid and not knowing what will happen in the next couple of months.
In the midst of this, I feel so blessed. Blessed to have opportunities like we had today to be able to go and be with friends and forget our troubles for a little while. God is good. He tells us not to worry and that He has everything under control.
Today's entry is about blessing. The blessing of friends, the blessing of educational experiences, and the blessing of fresh food. (Apples taste so good when just picked!)
I probably should have made the kids bring their nature notebooks or art journals and had them sketch some apples or an apple tree. However, that wasn't in the forefront of my mind. My goal was just to get there. Thank God I did.

We went on a field trip with our homeschool group to pick apples at a local orchard. It is good for our kids' souls to get out in the sunshine and fresh air. Even more important sometimes is how good it is for the moms to get together. We were there for 3 hours today and I didn't want to leave. I feel so blessed to be surrounded by the moms who are in our group and today I was really feeling it. I just didn't want to leave.
Our visit started with a wagon ride from the market to the orchard.

Each row of trees was a different type of apple. DS5 really loves Granny Smiths and we were able to find some.

His friend joined us and we had a great time exploring the orchard for the perfect apple.

Somehow DS5 and two of his best friends ended up with Star Wars figurines. I'm not exactly sure how to tie that in with apple picking. The picture was cute, so I included it here anyway.

I told these two to act like they like each other for the picture. This was the best I could get out of them.

We all enjoyed our bag lunches then headed to the petting zoo.

I thought this was a neat picture of my dear friend getting pictures of her kids.

And another dear friend trying to get coordinated to get on the wagon to go back.

I wish I could convey to all of those who were there today how much I love them and feel blessed by them - even if we talked for only a few seconds.
It was probably more that God knew just what I needed today and put me right there.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Jean Piaget

"The principal goal of education is to create men who are capable of doing new things, not simply of repeating what other generations have done."

-Jean Piaget (1896-1980) Swiss cognitive psychologist.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Kindergarten Nature Journal

For nature journaling this year, I am having each child pick a tree in our yard. On our 1/5th of an acre we actually have 6 trees to study - one of which is just a baby that popped up this summer.
At least once a month, I will have them observe and sketch their tree in their nature notebooks.

One of our trees appeared about the time DS5 was born so we have always called it his tree. Of course that is the tree he wanted to journal this morning. Even though I have studied this stuff and seen it a million times, it amazes me when a child of 5 years produces something like this. It's amazing what they can do if we let them.
DS5's tree and sketch
DD10's tree and sketch

Wednesday, September 2, 2009