Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Salt Projects

Tomorrow it's our new school room! I hung a sign on the door that says Welcome to Kindergarten (mainly for the benefit of people who visit our house and want to see what we're up to). There's not much in the room... a science corner with our jar of salty water from the Bay taking its own sweet time to evaporate, a nature corner with some wasps building a nest right outside the window (in our bird nest box, which no birds took a fancy to unfortunately -- it's neat to watch the wasps at work, though), a loveseat, and a coffee table. Other than that the room is empty. I'm still sorting out how I want things to work and where I want them to go, so we are beginning empty-ish and will fill it up as time goes by. On the coffee table I have set up a project from the Montessori curriculum (the first time I will have given her Mont. "work" -- we'll see how that goes. Steve pointed out that Mont. is actually completely opposite from Waldorf, which I know, but I'm curious to see how she responds to it and what my comfort level is with an "assignment", so to speak). This is called Making Sea Water. It's very very specific. We'll see how it goes!

The other salt project we'll do tomorrow is Sparkle Paint, which I've tried before without much success (we mixed the paint too thickly). But I like the idea so we'll try it again. Here's the recipe: You combine equal parts flour, water, and salt and then add some powdered tempera paint to each small dish to create your colors. When the paint dries, the salt in it is supposed to make it sparkle in the sunlight.

These projects are just for Natalie and myself. I'll work out how to also do special things with Leah and Rebecca once we get the new set up rolling. Always before they were kind of glommed in with N, which I didn't really like but couldn't see a way to avoid. It'll be interesting to see if I end up teaching three grade levels simultaneously or only two. L is pretty free wheeling and loose, which I love but she is definitely on the ditzy side, and Rebecca is turning out to be quite perceptive and bright (and advanced for her age, at least language-wise) so in the back of my mind I have an idea that we'll probably run school for the two of them together. I believe that it will take Leah quite a while to be ready for academic work and Rebecca will be ready more quickly and they will end up matching! (They're only 14 months apart). Two grade levels will definitely be easier to juggle than three, so I hope it works out that way.

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