September 21, 2006

Homeschooling: First and Second Grade Learning Enrichment

I warn you, this is a long list and an even longer post. By the time you finish reading this, you might have gray hair and need spectacles. You might have a headache. You may need therapy. Either way, there are some great ideas here, so maybe you should just save your eyes and HIGHLIGHT and PRINT this post instead?

WHAT IS this POST? Well (assuming you know what a 'post' is), first off there's a photo here for Thursday Challenge (today's challenge was to spotlight 'Occupation' in picture-form). In my case, my job is also what I LOVE to do: Homeschooling my Kids. Secondly, I have included a list of Learning Enrichment ideas from when the kids were in First and Second Grade. These are fun things we accomplished during the school year of 2004-5 that were NOT part of our regular curriculum. Some of the ideas may be IN KONOS somewhere, but they weren't the particular unit we were studying.

Without further ado, here is my Thursday Challenge photo (and this photo happens to be a snapshot of one of my learning enrichment ideas!)...

That's my buddy Lizbeth and her lovely brood there with my kids. [BOY, this photo makes me miss Texas.] We were building a volcano out of a coke can and some clay so that we could fill the top with chemicals and LIGHT THE SUCKER UP. Real flames and real ash, baby! It was so fun! Of course, it is highly toxic, so you have to stay upwind and clean up properly... It makes the COOLEST green ash crater. It was really neat!

And FINALLY... HERE is the Learning Enrichment List for my 2004-5 school year. If you use my list and love me dearly, leave me a tip in the tip jar up top. Ok, you don't have to love me dearly to leave me a tip. You don't actually even have to use my ideas. You can leave a tip any time you want.

Service Project - Help blind elderly lady trap feral cats and take to no-kill shelter
Trace and Color
Write a story about yourself and draw a picture
Recite and write books of NT and OT
Chores (learning more household responsibility)
Wednesday Night Bible Classes at Church
Watch movie about Jonah, study & read about him
Dance to Arabian music (Lebanese Pop)
Learn about Middle East geography and culture
Cut and glue for motor skills development
Help organize crafts and school supplies
Play with Legos
Dramatize being the teacher
Roll Change/Count Money
Study about Olympics online, see photos of opening ceremonies
Do your Bible Memory verse as a "homeboy rapper"
Sing "America the Beautiful"
Walk with parents
Relay races
Play games with other kids at Choir (musical games)
Learn the music alphabet and how to read music
Help mom grocery shop
Help mom baby-sit for free as a service project for a friend
Craft: Make Egg Heads & Decorate/Paint
Learn about Sedimentary Rocks (SLIB)
Play outside with friends
Sing Star Spangled Banner and God Bless America
Re-read lots of books you've already read because they are good
Join a local Homeschool Co-op
Go eat pizza with your co-op buddies for a back to school party
Read labels on foods in your pantry and learn what those big words really mean
Read Creation Magazine
Play Bible Bingo Card Game
Learn about Igneous Rocks (SLIB)
Build a volcano out of clay, blow it up with chemicals and fire outside
Cook a meal for church (service project)
Do a fund raiser for missionaries (sell Nicaraguan coffee for farmers there)
Role playing in Morgan's co-op class (dressing up)
Basic Sewing (Kaden's co-op class)
Creative writing
Free drawing time
Practice telling time
Singing class at church, Sunday nights
Morgan has a real rooster in her co-op class
Geography co-op class (Kaden) - 'Mother Russia'
Play kickball with youth group at church
Spanish classes twice a month at co-op
Explain and discuss upcoming elections
Play Disney's Sorry Edition for Kids
Listen to Daddy play his trumpet (discuss, learn notes)
Play outside in the back yard
Play Chess with Daddy
Work on our manners
Make play dough
Paint Russian Matryoshka doll ornaments at co-op
Volunteer to put out yard signs for political party (service project)
Help put on drama presentations at children's church
Learn to help in the kitchen cooking
Clean out closets and drawers
Sing songs in Spanish
Have cousins spend the night
Watch presidential election news footage before elections
Put a puzzle together
Play Uno
Play Checkers with Mommy
Play on (interactive plays & printable activities)
Show and tell Daddy's Iraq money/postcards, etc. to friends when learning about mid-East
Watch webcam of Mt. St. Helen's recent eruption/smoke
Build papier mâchè newspaper volcano, paint & add stick trees
Etiquette class at co-op
Create things out of construction paper
Co-op art class
Color a physical map of the USA (find things, name regions, etc.)
Class on Germany in co-op (2 weeks)
Eat authentic German meal (red cabbage, apple strudel, frigadellen and hot potato salad)
Discuss how elements are named in Latin
See the periodic table and discuss with Daddy
Watch robotics team and learn about their club & inventions
Bake and decorate bat cookies in co-op
Make paper airplanes with Daddy
Make a book about bats in co-op/do bat crafts
Play an "echolocation" game
Dance and crawl to music in Choir class (stop and start with music)
Sing the AEIOU Vowel Song
Learn to sing "One Tin Soldier"
Learn about different types of maps
Work on memorizing the books of the Bible
Write ten things you are thankful for
Practice tying your shoes
Do Pilates with mom in living room
Play on a moon-walk at cousin's party
Paint for fun
Learn Bike Safety at co-op (Kaden)
Learn about the country Ecuador in co-op class (2 wks)
Finger paint turkeys and a Bible story picture in co-op (Morgan)
Cooking class in co-op (Kaden)
Write letters to sponsored Compassion child in India
Allow kids to pay for things with cash
Choir rehearsals and concerts
Play Bible Trivia at church
Take a Electronic Test (Morgan) "TestLogic Grade 1, My Electronic Tutor"
Help decorate and put up fake Christmas Tree by instructions
String bead necklaces (Morgan)
Piano lessons
Learn about North American Countries
Snowman craft
Make your own books (cover art and stories)
Play in fake snow in Houston at Grandma's neighborhood
Do a Jesse Tree Poster and Bible Study
Go see Incredibles at Theater/Christmas Shop
Learn to address an envelope
Learn basic letter writing skills
Christmas Choir Carolers (craft by Family Fun Magazine)
Cook pumpkin, pull seeds out
Read at the book store for hours
Listen to Christmas music and sing along
Play Old Maid and Cranium Cadoo
Look at maps of Tsunami affected areas (current events) and learn about Tsunami (science)
Pray for Tsunami victims and survivors
Cook with Mom
Go rockhounding in hill country and mail rocks to friends
Do research on Texas Hill Country
Look at elevation maps of Texas
Learn about Central America
Do Mad Libs
Valentines parties and make cards (co-op)
Learn about Italy in co-op (make pasta)
Draw with chalk on the driveway
Learn about minerals and crystals, magnets and salts
Play outside with kittens
Grow crystals from a kit
"dissect" a chicken - check out gizzards, liver, neck, wings, legs, body cavity and bones
Make coin rubbings, learn who all the presidents on our money are
Learn about presidents day (co-op activities)
Make a collage on a notebook cover (co-op)
Learn about Igneous Rocks (SLIB)/Blow up volcano with real ash - ammonium dichromate (again)
Fill out a health chart every day for a week
Draw and label a map of Central America
Learn about Japan in co-op classes (2 wks)
Eat Miso Soup, read books about Japan
Baby-sit grandma's dog
Feed someone's cats (long term service project)
Join a science co-op
Take care of grandma after she gets out of hospital
Help mom keep the house clean for realtors
Color palm trees and mail to friends in Florida
Watch friend's daughter play grand piano
Decorate folders (co-op)
Potato stamping for St. Patty's Day (co-op)
Watch a children's play at a friend's church
sculpt with modeling clay
Learn about St. Patrick in Ireland (Morgan) in co-op
Learn to eat with chopsticks
Learn about metamorphic rocks, experiment to show chemical changes
Find an arrow head
Write scriptures for discipline issues
Go to a washateria to wash bedspreads
Make a list of rules
Collect state quarters and add them to display map
Test substances for acidic or basic
Test soils for acidic and basic
Bake Potato Volcanoes (shepherd's pie)
Help pack a suitcase for a trip
Write a story about the history of St. Patty's Day
Make a card for a friend's birthday
Object Lesson (Resurrection Eggs) for Easter at co-op
Make a home-made kite (co-op) and fly it in park (Kaden)
Dye Easter Eggs
Cut and color shamrocks
Celebrate Passover Feast & Eat Passover Foods (co-op - Morgan)
Palm leaves craft (co-op - Morgan)
Learn about chemical and mechanical erosion (do experiments with limestone)
Help mom look up library books with online system
Put together a 50 piece puzzle
Grow sponge dinosaurs from capsules
Catch a LARGE wolf spider, draw him and set him free
Make paper lady bugs with brads, colored paper, tissue paper and pipe cleaners
Learn about earthquakes, make a home made seismograph
Learn about fossils and petrification
Take a botany walk at a wildflower center where everything is labeled
Learn about South American countries
Play on a trampoline
Have friends over for dinner and cook with them to learn new recipes
Dinosaur Dioramas
Burry a dead cranefly to see how fast it decomposes (in sand)
Petrify a dead cranefly with clear nail-polish
Do a play at co-op (Morgan)
Learn about Australia in co-op (2 weeks)
Toilet paper kangaroo craft
Eat Vegemite on bread
Read an article about a roadrunner bird in a Texas magazine
Read an article about Texas bugs in a magazine
Rag art craft (co-op) for silent auction
Watch a National Geographic movie about Kangaroos
Color coral reef hand-outs
Make a map of Australia
Create a 3-D topographical map out of cork and cardboard
Ride scooters
Write a goodbye letter to Pug (our kitty that died)
Learn to ride a bicycle

Whew! I'll be surprised if someone actually makes it through that whole list.

Be sure to read these announcements before you go!
1. Tomorrow is Spunky's last day for the
Academic Superstore contest (win a free camera)!
2. Tomorrow is the FIRST DAY OF FALL (be sure to visit and see my seasons change here at Sprittibee)!
3. Be sure to stop in Saturday for the beginning of my Academic Superstore contest (spread the word... free camera, again).
4. Please pray for Canon and
visit his blog for updates.
5. Have a great FRIDAY!

Buzz Words: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Anonymous said...

What a great list. I wish I had done all those things in 1st & 2nd grade myself! I noticed you put in play on -- my 1st grader also enjoys this, he thinks he's doing computer games but he's actually learning!!

Enjoy doing all these great things with your kiddo's - what fun you'll have!

Anonymous said...

LOVE IT. We are doing 1st right now so I'll copycat some of your ideas.

Methinks you are a good mommy, not afraid of a little mess, glittery art supplies, and things such as that. I need to be better about that! I hate messes.

Sprittibee said...

Lindsey - We do the messy things outside usually... or at friend's houses, on field trips, or in a CONTROLLED environment. Lately, I don't mind quite as much as usual since the apartment we moved into last year has awful carpet anyway. The kids are pretty good about keeping their messes contained after living with ME for so long. ;) I am not quite a neat freak, but am close. Their Daddy really can't deal with clutter.

Chito... not sure what your comment is supposed to be. If it is a entry to the contest, you have put it in the wrong place. Would you like to email me and explain? I like nest videos.

Sprittibee said...

Amy - didn't mean to leave you off. Sorry! Thanks so much for the comment. :)

Anonymous said...

This list is unbelievable!! I am sharing with my friends and step sister - I thought I had a good list going, but this one really takes the cake.

I also like my old fall back from my babsitting days - the Pet Rock - might be a good one to tie in with the rock hike. You just collect a few extra, paint em and put on some googly eyes!!

Sprittibee said...

Thanks Catch up Lady. Glad you liked it. We have a pet rock, too. They did that this year in bible class on Wed. night at church. Too cute.

Thanks, Donna. I am rather long-winded... so it's good at least someone can make it through them!

eggornaments said...

Easter Egg Sleeves are a great project to do with the kids as well. They are fun and colorful. Please be sure to go to and let me know what you think about them. They are also an amazing fundraising tool for your church.

Sprittibee said...

Those ornaments are gorgeous. I love them!



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