Sewing, Homeschooling and Craziness

Posts tagged ‘hands on’

Learning Factors and Multiples and Comparing Fractions

Factors and Multiples Collage



Cailey started learning about factors and multiples last week. At first she was having a lot of trouble remembering the difference between the two. So, I Googled. LOL I saw a lot of really cute ideas for helping kids learn the difference. The only problem? I can’t draw. Not even decent stick people… SO, I made MY versions. 😉


Factors and Multiples 008 Factors and Multiples 009


Here are the 2 charts that I made. She keeps them in her Chair Buddy and pulls them out whenever she needs a little refresher.



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Then I made little flip books so she could practice her tables, factors and multiples.


Here are some of the links that I came across in my search!


Math Is Fun

Johnnie’s Math Page

Young Teacher Love

Ms Glanz


We have now moved on to comparing fractions! Here are some great links to help with that!

ABCya – scroll down to numbers


Worksheet Fun

Flapjack Educational Resources






Make a Medieval Tapestry

Make a Medieval Tapestry




So, I’ve been racking my brain to think of ideas for our Middle Ages unit that are NOT run of the mill and I think I may have hit on one!

Yesterday we made our own tapestries!! Well,  sort of…. We did break out a loom or anything like that. We did it OUR way. 😉

I dug out a couple of scraps of fabric that were sitting on top of one of my fabric boxes and decided they would work just fine.

Then I hunted down the dowel rods that I knew were here SOMEWHERE!

After that I hunted high and low for yarn or twine… ANYTHING to hang them with!! I got lucky and found some string.

When we got to our Middle Ages study I showed Cailey and Colin different pictures of medieval tapestries and explained how they were used.

Then I sat them in front of the fabric scraps with their paints and brushes and let them go.


This is what they came up with.


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Colin went with a shield and knights.

The lighting for this pic was terrible and using the flash only made it worse! LOL


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Cailey went with a unicorn and rose vines.


After the paint dried, I put a ton of glue at the tops and wrapped them around the dowels. Then I added the strings to end.

Viola! Medieval tapestries!!!

You could always have your child try their hand at a bit of embroidery.





Make Your Own Shield and Sword

We are a week into studying the middle ages and having a TON of fun with it!!!!

We drew motte and bailey castles, read books, watched videos and now we’ve made our own shields and swords!

I started out by cutting the shield shapes from thin cardboard, like the long, flat boxes that 24 packs of soda come in.

Then I stapled the handles to the back, once again using the same thin cardboard, but from the sides of the boxes.

Next I made the paste! I sort of eyeball the paste when I make it but I use a little flour, Elmer’s Glue (almost 2 bottles) and water. For one child or smaller projects I would make about 1/2.


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Then they started layering!



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Once the shields were dry (the next day), we glued aluminum foil to the front and back, making sure to cover the handle as well.


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After that, they painted them.



For the swords I used cardboard from one of our moving boxes and just cut out the shape.

Then we used paper mache on them as well.


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Next came aluminum foil and construction paper.

Finally, they decorated the hilts with glitter glue.


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Here is Colin’s finished sword!


They had so much fun making them and have been battling it out ever since! LOL






Hands on Math Activities

Hands On Math Activities



So, my printer went out… I had to buy a new one. BLECK!!! My old printer was a Kodak and the ink lasted forever and was SO CHEAP. SIGH… When I went to buy a new one they were out of Kodaks. WAH!!!! I bought an HP instead. Now, the quality of the HP is AWESOME but the ink is higher and doesn’t last as long. I say all of that to tell you this: I will be MAKING a lot of homeschooling stuff instead of PRINTING a lot of homeschooling stuff. When we first started homeschooling (7 years ago!!!) that was a normal occurrence. I made TONS of stuff. Looks like we are going back to that and I LOVE IT!! I had forgotten how much fun it was to make my own games and such.

Anyway, here are 2 new math games. Colin is LOVING them. SHEW!!!!!


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This is his favorite. He loves rolling the dice and inserting the numbers.


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I made different symbol squares so that even Cailey can use the game. It’s so versatile! You can compare the numbers, add them, subtract them, multiply or divide them! 🙂


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To store the game pieces I just stapled a paper bag to the “game board”.  Zipper bags would probably be better but I am out, of course.



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Skip counting by 5s game! I traced Colin’s hands on to construction paper and cut them out. Then I just wrote the numbers on the palms. He’s not as fond of this game, probably because dice are not involved, but he loves that he is playing with HIS hands. LOL


Hands on Words 007


The other day when I posted some sight word / word family activities I also posted some links to other hands on ideas. This was one of them! This is my version of Creative Family Fun ‘s Word Family Sort.

I added a blank circle for those sight words that Colin is learning that don’t fit into a family or ones that he isn’t actually learning all of yet.


I also added a couple of new things to the blog. Over on the right side you will see a new listing, My Pages. Until the title you will find links to my Homeschooling Units and Ideas page and my All Tutorials page. Now you (and I) can find what I have on each topic without having to use the search box.






Easy Hands On Number Activities

Easy Number Activities

I bought a bag of foam pieces from the Dollar Tree a few weeks ago. We’ve been having some fun crafting with them, too bad someone threw those crafts away!!! ARGH!!!! Anyway, I was trying to think of some ways to improve Colin’s grasp of numbers higher than 20. So, I dug out those foam pieces and started writing the numbers 0-50 on them.

Easy Number Activities 004

Then I had him put them in order. Easy peasy!!! Cheap and fun, too!

Easy Number Activities 008

Then I had an idea of another activity he could do with those pieces! Count out beans!! Now he can see how many the different numbers represent as well as their placement in line.

Not bad for $1!

I have found that there are a lot of things out there for numbers 1-10 and a few for 1-20 but not many for any of the higher numbers. I will be trying to think of some more ideas! Wish me luck! 😉


Solar System Unit Study

Solar System

As always, I try to add resources for all age ranges.

All the printables are free unless otherwise noted with $$$.

The books should be easily found at your local library, on Amazon or Paperback Swap.

books graphic



kindle graphics



printables graphics

Space Lapbook – Homeschool Share

Astronauts Unit , Comets, Meteors and Stars Unit, Planets Unit – Homeschool Helper Online

Astronaut Lapbook – Homeschool Helper Online

Solar System Printables     More Printables – HS Launch

Solar System Worksheets –

Solar System Printables –

Solar System Printables and Activities – 3 Boys and a Dog

Solar System Printables – School Express

Space Printables, Activities, Lessons and Crafts – Crayola

Lapbook based on Magic School Bus Space Explorers  – Yee Shall Know

Planets and Stars Printables – Mrs Home Ec

Phases of the Moon Mini Book – Frugal Homeschool Family

Space Printables – 2 Teaching Mommies

Space Printables (TONS and TONS of them!!) – Learning Pages (you have to sign up but it’s all free)

Life Cycle of a Star – Counting Coconuts

Preschool Solar System Pack – 1+1+1=1

Solar System Printables – A to Z Teacher Stuff

Cut and Build Models

Solar System Printables – Classroom Jr

Solar System Printables – Sparklebox

Solar System Printables – Jumpstart

Solar System 3 Part Cards –  Imagine Our Life

Solar System Nomenclature Cards and Mini Book – The Helpful Garden

Space and Solar System Printables – Pinay Homeschooler

Space Printables – Activity Village

Solar System Montessori Printables – Montessori Mom



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Solar System Experiments – A to Z Home’s Cool

Solar System Info –

Solar System Lessons and Activities – Scholastic

Solar System Lesson Plans and Crafts – Crayola

Space Crafts and Activities – No Time for Flashcards

Solar System Lesson Plan – Squidoo

Solar System Projects – Squidoo

Solar System Documentary List for Amazon and Netflix – Squidoo

Solar System Projects and Activities – Pink and Green Mama

The Universe Games, Videos and Activities – Study Jams

Space Crafts – Red Ted Art

Lego Solar System – Kitchen Counter Chronicles

Montessori-Inspired Solar System Unit – Living Montessori Now

Candy Solar System – E Is for Explore

Solar System Videos – YouTube

Interplanet Janet – Schoolhouse Rocks – YouTube

Virtual Field Trip – Fly Me to the Moon – Laurie Fowler

Star Gazing Network

Solar System and Interactive Star Guide – Astronomy for Kids

The Solar System Channel – How Stuff Works

Solar System Info – Nat Geo

Space Activities – NASA

Solar System Videos, Games and Lessons – Neo K12

Astronomy Themed Ideas and Resources – Homeschool Giveaways

Solar System Info – Discovery Kids

All About the Solar System for Kids – Mr Nussbaum

Outer Space Crafts – DLTK-Kids

Universe Info – Universe Today

Space Crafts – Busy Bee Kids Crafts

Windows to the Universe

Virtual Journey into the Universe – Kids News Room

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Magic School Bus Kit – The Secret of Space

Some rabbit trailing or expansion ideas –



Tycho Brahe


Galileo Galilei

Johannes Kepler

Space Program


Space Station



Mad Scientists

So sorry for my lack of sewing posts lately. I did manage to cut the pieces for Cailey’s Tinkerbell costume! Step one – complete! LOL  I should have a tutorial up by the end of the week.

Then Deanna comes in yesterday and tells me that she would like me to make her a long black skirt to wear to the Halloween party on Sunday. Nothing like waiting until the last minute! LOL AND she wants makeup like this –


Yep… Nothing like the last minute! 😉



Anyway, since I have a lot of sewing to DO but nothing to SHOW, I thought I would do a post about hands on science for homeschooling! FUN! 😉


The Adventures of Bear: Botany Experiments

Here are some fun and easy botany experiments from The Adventures of Bear.




Montessori-Inspired Skeleton Unit by Deb Chitwood, via Flickr

Montessori inspired skeleton units put together by Living Montessori Now




Classification and Legos

OH! Legos!!! A great hands on unit for boys especially!! This is from The Homeschool Post.




Science - Open up the pumpkin, add a little soil and water, and watch the seeds (which are already inside the pumpkin) grow. // FUN - need to remember this!!!

This is an AWESOME idea for this time of year!!! Basically you just fill your pumpkin with soil, water it every so often and watch the seeds grow! 🙂 This idea comes from Growing in PreK. Although it says Pre K, I think this would be excellent for any elementary age child!




I ❤ the Crafty Classroom!!! This fossil craft would be an AWESOME addition to a fossil or dinosaur study! The page has more hands on idea for fossils. And you should check out all the other themes on the right side bar. AH-MAZ-ING!!!!!!




This is BRILLIANT!! What a great way to show the molecules in the different layers of the atmosphere! A really good visual from Science Matters.




E Is for Explore has a lot of great ideas to show static electricity!  And we are quickly approaching the time of year when static electricity will be zapping us on a daily basis….. LOL




Earth Science Unit.....A great visual to explain plate tectonics and the formation of volcanoes and mountains. So many other engaging (and easy to replicate) Earth science activities on her site!

I thought this was just brilliant. I would never have thought to use a soggy graham cracker to represent the tectonic plates! Thank you to the Homeschool Den!!!! This page has a lot of other ways to explore plate movements. 😉




weather forecasting with pine cones, science for kids

Another perfect for fall science experiment!!! This one was put together by Science Sparks with a guest post by Rainy Day Mum.





Harry Potter

The Science Behind Who Gets Magical Powers would be great for high school biology. It’s not exactly hands on but it is definitely an attention grabber for those HP fans!!!





If this shows up (FINGERS CROSSED!!!) it will be a video from BBC One that shows how your ear works.





An experiment about brain fluid from Life With My Giggle Girls.





Engineering for kids! Build a bridge out of drinking straws, paperclips, duct tape, and cardstock.

Here is an engineering idea from Relentlessly Fun, Deceptively Educational.




Boy on merry-go-round

Launch a rocket from a spinning planet with this guide from NASA Space Place.




Water Cycle Wonders from Practical Pages. And while you’re there, check out allllll the other amazing things on this blog!




Making different types of rocks out of crayons.

Another brilliant idea!!! This can be found at Momma Owls Lab.





It's Bug Bunny's skeleton, and there's a load more too!

Here is another one that isn’t actually hands on but definitely an attention grabber. It shows the skeletons of different cartoons!! How cool is that???


Speaking of skeletons, we had an interesting science time yesterday. LOL Cailey was petting Bonnie and asked if a cat has bones in its tail. Instead of just saying yes and moving on, I looked up cat skeletons on Google to show her. Then we dragged out our DK Eyewitness Skeleton book and looked at all the different types. That led to dragging out the starfish as an example of exoskeletons! LOL

Whenever your kids ask a question, don’t just answer it. Help them explore it. See where it leads! You never can tell….. LOL Science is a natural topic for kids. They are always wanting to know the how and the why of everything around them.

We haven’t been doing any “actual” homeschooling since we decided to move. There have just been a thousand things going on around here…. BUT they have still been getting their daily dose of science just by being interested in the things around them. Such as, “why are the leaves turning colors and falling off the trees?” “Why do squirrels collect nuts?” “Why are the buzzards circling over there?”

Sometimes you even get really lucky and can add some history in, too. 😉 “Why do we use pumpkins on Halloween”, can be both a science and a history question!

And don’t forget with Thanksgiving just around the corner that the opportunities to combine the two subjects will continue! Weather, crop growing, and the different animals of the New World just to name a few science items to go along with the history!

And I just had to pause this post to explain how the earth tilts for the different seasons and why there will most likely NOT be any snow in Georgia this winter…. LOL Geography AND science in one question! LOL


I need to get sewing on Cailey’s costume but all I reallllly want to do is take a nap! LOL I am trying to fight an oncoming cold….. WAH!! I do NOT need a cold right before we move!!! AND right before Halloween!! Not to mention that I am still having awful fibro flares. I think they are due to having to get up at 4 am this week to take The Hubby to work. WAH!!!!! BUT when we move he will have more decent hours! YAY!!!!







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