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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Wet Chalk Easter Eggs

     In getting ready for Easter this weekend, I found a new way to create some eggs for artwork- using wet chalk! I prepared the table and the kids for this possible messy craft, but it ended up being not bad at all.

 First, we started with placing stickers and tape all over the egg to create different shades and impressions after the chalk was applied.

 Then, the kids dipped the chalk into a little cup of water, then colored. The younger children LOVED to dip! 

 Mason chalking it up!

 Clearly this required much effort with JT's tongue sticking out of his mouth.

 He put in so much effort, that he ended up ripping his egg a bit. We were able to repair it after the paper dried.

 Finn loved coloring over his stickers and tape.

We let the paper and chalk dry during lunch and nap time. I then removed the stickers and tape to reveal their finished eggs.





Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Bell Pepper Shamrock

     While St. Patrick's Day was over the weekend, on Monday JT and his friends made a little artwork in celebration.

Very simple- Green paint, white paper, and a bell pepper that I cut about 1/3 off. Another tip of the hat to Pinterest for helping me find this cute project.

Just like many of of our stamping crafts, all the kids did was dip the inside portion of the bell pepper in the paint.

Then stamp their hearts out!

The result was a pretty cool looking 4 leaf clover.

All smiles while I snap photos.

Prime example of why I use newspaper to protect the table. 

Mason discovered that if he held on to the stem, he could keep his hands clean.

This is so cool!

Ella's Shamrocks

Mason's Shamrocks

JT's Shamrocks

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Painting Toast

     Painting toast? What the heck!?! Yes it can be done and safely eaten afterward. Sadly, I don't have as many photos as I thought of this fun activity- I think I didn't put my SD card in my camera or something, so I just have my phone photos to share.

 For this activity all you need is plain toast, water that you tint with food coloring, and something to paint with( paint brushes,q-tips, or sponge brush).

 Ella was ready to paint!

 Mason painted and also snacked.

 Ella enjoyed her red, blue, and green toast.

JT had a very red piece of toast! 

All of the kids really had a blast with this activity and the best part was they got to eat their creations after they finished! This will be a repeat activity for sure.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

FCCLA Competition

     Lindsay and 2 of her classmates have been working for several weeks on a major project for a FCCLA (Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America) competition that took place yesterday. Their topic to present was on human trafficking. The girls researched, prepared a speech, made a power point presentation to accompany the speech, and also made this board highlighting their information.

 The completed board.

 There are certain requirements that needed to be met one of them showing the girls presenting their information to their peers prior to the competition. Last week the girls presented all day to students in preparation for their competition.

 In addition to highlighting some of the statistics of human trafficking, the girls also provided some information to help, deter, or some solutions for this serious issue. As a part of their presentation, they found a local martial arts business owner who taught the students some self defense moves. Lindsay was very excited to demonstrate what she had be taught to John and I when she got home that day.

 A card that the girls made. They thought if a person was in a human trafficking situation and had this card, they could leave it in a hotel room, hand it to someone in a public setting, or reach out to get them help.

 The center portion had several traffic signs.

 Each flap lifted up to reveal information and facts about human trafficking.

 Lindsay displaying her board after her day of competition.

 After a long day, Lindsay and her team earned a silver star ranking for their presentation! Gold is the only higher ranking above silver. This also qualified the team to compete at the state level in a few weeks. Excited for their hard work especially since all the girls are freshman and it is quite rare for underclassmen to participate in these types of competitions. Way to go!!!

When taking the photos, JT kept asking if he could be in a photo with Lindsay. So here is JT displaying Lightening McQueen with his big sister.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

High school here we come!

     Last week something happened that while we were expecting, but it still caught both John and I by surprise. It was time to register Courtney for high school! How could it be time for our baby girl to start high school? The realization that our girls are all growing up and will quickly be out of the house was smacking John and I in the face last week. It won't be another nearly 10 years before we will be doing high school registration for JT. Even that, I'm sure those years will fly by like they have for the girls.

Courtney brought home the registration book and several papers to fill out prior to registration. We had a good idea heading in what to expect since this is our 3rd go round.

     What we didn't expect was that our plan was going to be changed and for the better. Next year our school system is going to be starting a new program at each of the high schools to better prepare and challenge the students that would like to be in the program. For our high school they will have the STEM academy. It stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics with a special emphasis on the health care field. Students don't need to have an interest in a career in one of these areas to participate. 

     In a nutshell, the program is geared for honors and AP classes, but the method of teaching, learning, and working is going to be different that a traditional high school experience. Of the core subjects there will be 5 teachers- English, Math, Science, Social Studies, and the STEM focus that the students will have each of the four years of high school and those teachers will be working together to create integrated lessons with interesting,hands on,  real life application to teaching and work the students complete. It sounds like a fantastic program and Courtney was very excited to sign up for the program.

This is what her schedule of classes will look like next year. She will still have her elective classes like all high school students, she will just be in the STEM classes with other STEM peers.

Here is a proposal of what Courtney's 4 years at Beech High school might look like. This doesn't include the other electives after her freshman year and classes like PE and foreign language she will need to take. The program at BHS is being modeled after a nearby STEM academy that has had great success. If you would like to take a sneak peek at what Courtney might be doing next year, go visit Kenwood High STEM Acamedy. So far about 1/3 of Courtney's 8th grade class has signed up for the academy  a far greater response than expected. We are all very excited for this new opportunity for Courtney and what her high school years hold.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Permitted to drive

     We have another driver in the house! Lindsay took her driver's permit test recently and passed! In fact, she only missed 1 on the exam. Great job Lindsay! Getting her actual permit was a bit of an experience though.
The day she took her test, all of the computer systems were down except for the permit computers. So she was able to take the test, but she left with just this pink paper and a receipt showing I had paid the test fee. We would have to come back later to take her photo and enter the info in the system.

We returned a few days later and made this girl legal! I guess now instead of giving you the actual license immediately, they print off a paper version and the official card is mailed to you. Step 2 complete- she was ready to drive.

Then, about a week later, the official learners permit came in the mail! Poor Lindsay still hadn't driven by then since we had nasty weather last week and I was waiting for ideal conditions for her first few lessons.

Yesterday, the skies opened and a beautiful sunny day emerged! It was time for Lindsay to drive! I had her drive through our neighborhood to a cemetery that is right around the corner. Perfect for her first lesson. We did several loops around the grounds and Lindsay did fantastic! All of the usual first time jitters of getting used to the brakes, accelerator, and smooth steering, but all in all an excellent first effort. I'm planning on doing a few more similar basic lessons until Lindsay feels comfortable with the van, then out to some actual roads with cars. Wish us all luck!