18 June 2010

A Break for Me & a Treat for You

Summer has definitely kicked into high gear around here.  We've got ballet recitals, camping trips, VBS, and tons of other activities coming up, so I'll be pretty scarce around here for a few weeks.  I'm planning on being back in early July and I have a fun series planned on twaddle-free authors.  I'm pretty excited about it, so be sure to stay tuned!

To keep you and your kiddos entertained while I'm gone, I found some fabulous printable paper dolls that I though I'd share with you.  In fact I'm pretty sure I had this set of Gingham paper dolls when I was little.  I think I'm more excited about them than my girls are!  Paper dolls sadly seem to be coming a lost art, don't you think? 

Have a great summer and I'll be back in July!

14 June 2010

Field Trip: Getty Villa

When we visited The Getty Center last summer, I learned about the Getty Villa, a completely seperate branch of The Getty devoted to the art and culture of ancient Greece and Rome.  What a perfect way to wrap up our year studying these cultures!

Admission is free, but parking costs $15 and you must make a reservation beforehand. 

We saw lots of amazing artifacts that added a new dimension to our history study.  It was so neat to see Gracie get excited about seeing things that we had learned about:  a bust of Augustus Caesar, the gallery numbers written in roman numerals, ancient Roman coins (she had made her own version out of clay), a Greco-Roman mummy (which was "older than you, mommy!"),  and a tiny fragment of an ancient manuscript of The Odyssey.  We read this version during the school year.

She also developed a new appreciation for the art of mosaic.  She worked for weeks on a small 6 inch square mosaic.  This one was at least 4 feet long!

Like the Getty Center, the Getty Villa has a wonderful room devoted to hands on activites called the Family Forum.  We were able to decorate our own Greek vases by making rubbings on paper or drawing on huge reproductions with dry-erase markers.  (That's my art on the right.  I'm a woman of many talents, I know.)

My favorite feature was the big screen where you could become part of the image on a vase.  There was a wall of props to choose from, so you could fit right in to the scene, which changed every so often.  Isn't that fun?!

Warning:  In gallery 209, there were a few vases with scenes NOT appropriate for children.  Fortunately I saw them first and easily distracted Gracie into another gallery. 

11 June 2010

10 June 2010

Roman Feast

We celebrated the conclusion of our ancient history studies by having a Roman Feast!  Gracie did almost all of the food preparation.
So what does one eat at a Roman Feast?  Nothing too complicated, thankfully!  Crustulum is garlic bread and cecina is a baked mashed garbanzo bean dish.  (Recipes from Hands-On Heritage Activity and Coloring Books - Activity Book, Ancient Rome and The Story of the World. Activity Book 1: Ancient Times (Revised Edition) (Bk. 1)

Plates and silverware are strictly forbidden.  Sitting on the floor is encouraged.

Don't forget to wear your laurel (or, er... ceanothus) wreath!

07 June 2010

Fund your Homeschool

Swagbucks is a service that I use regularly and love, and seems perfect for homeschoolers.  We're always searching things on the web, and we always need to add more books to our collection, right?

Swagbucks is primarily a search engine that randomly rewards you with points for your searches.  You can exchange these points for items in the Swag Store, such as Amazon gift cards, Starbucks gift cards, and others.  The $5 Amazon gift cards are the best deal for 450 Swagbucks.  You can use multiple gift cards towards a purchase.

My experience with Swagbucks has been great! I've been a member since last summer and have earned exactly $105 in gift cards in less than a year!  You can bank your cards in your Amazon account and they will never expire.  Instead of using Swagbucks for homeschooling supplies, I've decided to use Swagbucks as a Christmas fund.  Last year I was able to buy these, this, and this paid for entirely with Swagbucks!

I know it sounds too good to be true, but it's absolutely legitimate.  There is no cost involved, I haven't received spam from Swagbucks, and I've never had a problem with any of the gift cards I've ordered.  The search engine doesn't offer results that are as extensive as Google, but I almost always find what I'm looking for.  Search "Apples and Jammies" and it's on the first page.  Not too shabby!

I usually don't like to do "shameless plug" types of posts.  But I honestly do think Swagbucks is great and hope you will, too!

Disclaimer:  Referral links are included in this post.

Search & Win

03 June 2010

Good Links

I've been having so much fun going through all these planners and printables sites!

This list of chapter books and this list of picture books are great for incorporating some intentional geography in your child's reading.

Putting together some summer adventure boxes is definitely on my to-do list.

These will definitely be making their way onto our table this summer for a cool, no-cook meal.

These look like fun crafts: one for preschoolers, one for bigger kids, and one for mom!

01 June 2010

Review: Calvary Chapel Bible Curriculum

Curriculum Choice Homeschool Review Blog
I recently reviewed Calvary Chapel's Bible Curriculum.  It's online and free!    Read my review here.