Monday, June 10, 2013

Spy Week - Summer Theme Week

Spying - who doesn't like it? We became spies this week. When I was a little girl, my mom got me to write in my diary/journal by asking me to spy on people/things, etc. I think she regretted it at the time, as I did this week, but I did find that my boys were more inclined to pick up a pencil during the summer than usual. We started off making our spy kits. I had some small drawstring bags from our Survival Week leftover, so we gathered our supplies and put them into these bags. In our kit: - Spy disguises (I found these at the Dollar Store) - Sunglasses (The boys had these already) - Little spiral bound notebooks - Handheld magnify glasses (Again, the Dollar Store) - Tiny pencils - Ink pads (I already had) - Small flashlights (The boys already had) - Small cameras (We already had) Then we set to work. I gave them the mission to explore the backyard and to spy on people/things. Of course, the cameras came into play on this one. Each boy wore their silly disguise glasses and with camera armed at the ready, set out to find EVIDENCE. (For what, I'm still trying to figure out). Another day, we used the ink pads and magnify glasses to look at our fingerprints. They were amazed at how each of our fingerprints were different from the other. And yes, I did kind of sneak in the fact that God made us all specially unique that no one has the same fingerprint. Finally, every spy needs to know how to use a Decoder and how to send encrypted messages to each other. We made a Decoder Ring and Aidan and I sent messages to each other. I had many more things planned for the week, but we just didn't seem to get to them all! With it being summer - we just couldn't deny the pull of playing in the swimming pool! This week - BLOODY PIRATES!!!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Summer School: Survival Week

I couldn't decide on which to post these theme weeks - either here, where we are recording our Family's Bucket List being filled, or on our School:reThunk page where we document our homeschooling. So I put it on both places. There. Problem solved. This summer I decided to try something different. Each week of summer I planned a different theme for the boys to explore and experience rather than being plugged in most of the summer. This week, as we lead up to the Boy vs Wild Season 2 party, we are experiencing Survival week. Sunday evening, Aidan had his first camp-out sleepover in the backyard with a neighbor friend. It was cold. Brr. But they survived! We visited the Army Surplus Store with Daddy on Memorial Day as well as the Sportsmans Warehouse were they were introduced to more than BB guns! ;-) The next day, we went out to hunt for frogs. By listening and looking for places where frogs might live, we concluded that we don't know that much about frogs and were out of luck. Too bad, Aidan was interested in eating Frog Legs to survive. I told him that if he would eat a piece of lettuce, he'd be on the right track to survival in the outdoors. After deciding that frogs weren't going to be put into our jar, bugs and leaves were the next best thing. On Wednesday, we worked on tying knots. For a kid who refuses to learn how to tie his shoes, he picked up knot tying quickly. Afterwards, Aidan spent time reading his new Survival Book that we bought him in his hanging chair. (Yes, the chair is back. Oi Vey.) On Thursday, we had some friends over to help us explore how to make shelters and start fires. However, we aren't experienced survivalists, and quickly realized that teaching kiddos how to put up lean-to shelters and start a fire in wind of 23 mph and wind gusts up to 35 mph just wasn't the smartest thing to do. So we set them lose in the backyard (quite literally - as I'm sure the blew around the yard a time or two), and poured ourselves another cup of coffee. We can survive another time. Friday, we set about making Bow and Arrows from PVC pipes, nylon string and wooden dowels. The kids had a ball and while we were at it, I painted a lion for them to shoot for lion meat (aka chicken nuggets for lunch). All this led up to our big mud party. A party we like to call, Boy vs Wild. This was our second season, and talk is already happening for Season 3. This week: SPY WEEK