Saturday, December 27, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

When I was a little girl, we use to make paper chains to hang around the room at Christmas. I thought the kids would like to do this so I gathered them all together and away they went...

Roshana had more fun playing with them!

The end result, hanging behind our Christmas tree.

Another craft we did one afternoon was to paint each kids hand gold, then I pressed it to paper. I then cut around the hand, wrote their name and year behind it. Then I laminated it, punched a hole at the top and threaded ribbon through it. A lovely keepsake.

Our Jesse Tree

Christmas always seems rushed and busy and its so easy to lose our focus on the true meaning of Christmas ~ God’s plan of salvation for mankind with Jesus, His son’s birth. This year I decided that we would have a Jesse tree.

The idea of the Jesse Tree comes from Isaiah 11:1-9, where God promises a discouraged nation that the glory they remember from David’s time will come again. They will have another king from Jesse’s family, in whose reign the whole earth will know God. As a Christian, we see that promise fulfilled in Jesus, and so we use a Jesse Tree and decorate it with reminders of how God prepared the world for that kingdom.

I purchased the Jesse Tree download by Ann Voskamp titled ‘A glorious coming, The Jesse tree, celebration of Advent. It comes with all the devotions and ornaments ready to print off. I printed ours off and laminated them and punched holes in the top, then threaded ribbon to hang them. I found a good branch in the back yard and the children and I painted it gold. We then put it in a plant pot and put it on display in our lounge room.

We started on the 30th November and each morning or evening read a scripture verse and devotion for that day and then hung the ornament on the branch. This is done right up to Christmas day. It is amazing to see how God’s plan has unfolded since the creation of the world and how we now wait for Christ’s glorious return.

Egyptian Masks

The children really enjoyed making these masks as part of their Egyptian lapbook we are currently working on.

Award Night 2008 ~ Our Two Scholars

Pernella & Charlie had their awards night from Groves Christian College recently. Groves is the distant education school which 'moniters' the childrens learning. We have a teacher who visits us a couple of times a year and is available year round to help or give advice on different matters. They also mark and check the work I send to them at the end of each term to make sure the children are on track with their learning.

OK so the next few photos are simply parents bragging rights - big grin....

Pernella received high achievement certificate for Science, Social Studies & English. A certificate for Christian character, effort & work ethic. A trophy for excellence in Mathematics.

Charlie also received a high achievement certificate for Science & Social Studies. A certificate for Christian character, effort & work ethic. A trophy for excellence in Mathematics.

Now on to grade two and grade four next year!

Oh we do love to live beside the seaside, oh we do love to live beside the sea..

Pictures of our family trying out their new fishing rods. These were taken at the beach near our house. I was kept busy chasing Lola to make sure she didn't go swimming in the sea!

My girl's dream come true!

While recently on a weekend away we came across this dinosaur skeleton at a museum. Pernella & Charlie were so excited to have their photos taken with it. Needless to say my little Paleontologist is having an enlarged framed photo of her with her T-rex skeleton put into her room - smile.

Music lessons in our house...

Gives a new meaning to 'As my guitar gently weeps' - big grin!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Our volcano activity

What better way to finish off our volcano unit than to make a model volcano of our very own. We used a plastic container and put our volcano in the middle, along with dry leaves, rocks, grass and some of Pernella's dinosaurs strategically placed by Pernella herself... The kids were just happy making the model and didn't realize that we were going to make a mess... oops I mean lava!

After half filling the cup inside the volcano with vinegar the children added some red food colouring.

and then I told them to add a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda and they looked on in amazement as their volcano errupted.

The kids decided 'heh let's make the lava blue, then green,' etc, etc....
well why not....

We got this fun activity from
and you thought science was boring!~ big grin...

Sunday, September 21, 2008


Our big project for term 3 was on Volcanoes. (The childrens choice, they have a thing for natural disasters - big grin!)

I brought two IMAX DVD’s on volcanoes from ebay
* The eruption of Mount St. Helens and
* Ring of Fire.
Would highly recommend both and we enjoyed watching them.

The books we read about volcanoes were:

Eyewitness – Volcanoes
Volcanoes – facts, stories and activities
Pompeii buried alive
Volcanoes – lets read and find out science
Pompeii and Herculaneum, past and present
Hill of Fire
The House on the Volcano
Geology, Volcanoes – enrichment 4 You e-guide (from Currclick)
National Geographic magazines that we owned had several really great articles on volcanoes from around the world.

Don't you just love their artwork on the front cover of their lapbooks!

What we learnt
.What is a volcano
.Facts about volcanoes
.About the ring of fire
.Inside a volcano
.Types of volcanoes
.Parts of a volcano
.About the earth's plates
.What causes a volcano
.About the earth's crust/what's inside the earth
.How volcanoes were named
.Warning signs of a volcano
.The hazards of an erupting volcano
.Mount Vesuvius eruption
.Mout St Helen's eruption
.Vocabulary used for volcanoes
.Types of rocks from volcanoes
and a few other things besides - big grin!

We got our lapbook templates, maps & pictures from...

Homeschool Share have great resources. We got our Volcano tri-fold from here (thanks Jimmie) also they had lots on volcanoes from the book ‘hill of fire’ (they now even have a volcano lapbook that was posted two days after we finished ours! Oh well!
Enchanted learning
Homeschool Helper

John Bunyan and William Tyndale

Recently we had the opportunity to watch The 'John Bunyan Story' and the 'William Tyndale story' on dvd. A series of animated programs for young children presenting the lives of true-life heros from Christian history. Both the children really enjoyed watching these dvd's and me not missing a learning moment (big grin!) decided to get the children to write a short biography of each of these great men of God. We also read John Bunyan's childrens copy of a Pilgrims Progress.

Saharna's Biographies

Josiah's Biographies

thanks to Notebooking Pages for the free biography sheets. We found pictures of Bunyan and Tyndale on Wikipedia to print off, cut and stick on our sheets.

Our Pineapple Lapbook...

We kept this lapbook simple and fun to do. We took photos of our excursion to the Packing shed and stuck them into our lapbook with a one-line description of what was in the photo.

The children wrote a brief outline of their visit. I made a couple of basic (very basic) mini books for the children to fill in and stick in their books.
The main focus of this lapbook was on their visit to the packing shed and not on so much detail of the pineapple industry as a whole. We did cover where pineapples grow in Australia and included a labelled map. We looked up how long it takes for pineapples to be ready for harvesting and what needs to happen for the crops to grow well. We included some pictures of pineapples growing in the field and of course we learnt that the botanical name for a pineapple is Ananas Comosus. It was called a pineapple because its shape looked like a pinecone.

Pernella's Lapbook

Charlie's Lapbook

Lapbooking is great for all of us to sit around the table and work on it together. As Pernella is in grade three her lapbooks have more detail and more writing in them then Charlie’s does. (Much to her disgust! Big grin!) I have brought them magazine holders so that they can keep their lapbooks/notebooks in them and so they can look at them anytime. (Which they do often) I find with lapbooking or notebooking they learn more on a chosen subject then if we were just reading from a workbook or textbook and filling in the answers. With a lapbook they are left with a beautiful item of work to display and show around to the family.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A visit to the Pineapple Packing Shed

Just recently the kids and I, along with our friends Eloise, Martin, Matthew and Amy had the opportunity to go along to Paradise Pines packing shed to watch what happens after the pineapples are picked from the field to how they end up at our grocery stores. We got a 'special tour' around the shed (I have contacts)and the children (even the adults) had a great time.

This picture is of the field bins of Pineapples. The types of pineapples they pack are smooth, rough and hybrid. Did you know that it takes up to two years for pineapples to be ready for harvesting!

One of the highlights for my two was getting to wear these 'groovy orange' safety vests.

Our 'Tour Guide'!

The bins of pineapples are taken to the conveyor belt where they were put on, sorted and packed into boxes.

Saharna and Josiah hard at work!

I will post photos of our Pineapple lapbooks soon...

Just going fish'n....

Hubby, Pernella & Charlie have started fishing! These pictures are of Charlie's first fish that he caught. Very proud moment. Unfortunately
Pernella's got away...
They had an excellent time at the beach and among all the fisherman that were there, they were the only ones to come home with a catch.

Our Beach at Sunrise

Every couple of weeks Hubby gets up very early on a Saturday morning and takes Pernella & Charlie to our beach. They watch the sunrise, look in rock pools, walk, talk and collect shells.
Just spending time together.

“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.” C.S. Lewis

From the rising of the SUN unto the going down of the same the LORD's name is to be praised. Psalms 113:3