Monday, 15 June 2015

May 2015: Grade One Language Block (Letter R, Letter L, Letter T)

A summary of our month of learning…

Week 1

Letter R
This week we explored the letter R using the story of ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ and discovered the Letter R in her hooded jacket and in a little robin redbreast nearby. 
Story: ‘Little Red Riding Hood'

TL: Blackboard Drawing: R is for Red Riding Hood
TC: Blackboard Drawing: R is for Robin
TR: Story Puppetry

ML: Wet-on-wet painting exploring red and yellow

Centre: Modelling the Letter R
MR: Revealing the letter in wax-resist watercolour

BL: Baking with Letter R

BC: Picture alphabet ‘R for Riding Hood'
BR: Letter R practise
The weather was wild and wet all week, so there were lots of opportunities for puzzles and board games. We really enjoyed family games of charades with the Letter R - both animals beginning with R (rabbit, robin, rat, rooster, ring-tail possum) and activities and movements beginning with R (running, rowing, riding, reading, raking, rolling).

We also enjoyed lots of R rhymes and riddles. Here are a few:

Here is a riddle, 
Here is a rhyme,
The word starts with R, 
every time!

1. It’s long and it’s pointed,
and shoots through the sky,
This riddle is tricky and that is no lie! 

2. It’s long and it coils,
It’s braided and rough.
Can you guess it?
This riddle is tough.

Little Robin Redbreast sat upon a rail.
Niddle, naddle went his head,
Wiggle, waggle went his tail!

Round and round the rugged rocks,
the ragged rascal ran.


For our wet-on-wet painting exercise this week, we started looking through some of the exercises found in the lovely book: ‘Painting and Drawing in Waldorf Schools: Classes 1-8’ by Thomas Wildgruber. We are looking forward to exploring more ideas from this book. This week we observed the interaction between red and yellow. 
R is for Rosella 
Natural Science with R:
During the week, we used the Letter R find out a bit more about the wet and wild weather we were having. We discussed rainbows (and pots of gold of course! ;) as well as rain and snow. 

We did this science experiment [here] making our own indoor “rain”, and to accompany it I made up a story about Captain Condensation and his weather ship. The boys really enjoyed acting out the story.

The highlight of the week was having their uncle back from a science research trip to Antarctica, his second voyage there to study sea ice. This research trip was to fly mapping drones over the ice. The boys loved seeing the photos, videos and hearing the stories he brought back with him. To accompany this, we watched  David Attenborough documentary film about the Antarctic environment. 
TL: Rain & rainbows
TR: Experiment: Making rain
BL: First snowfall of the season!
BR: Learning about Antarctica with their uncle
Other Happenings...
The Sunday of this week was Mother’s Day. We joined a Landcare Group 'Family Fungi Foray’ down at Arve River, near Geeveston with David Ratkowsky, one of the leading experts on Tasmanian fungi and co-author of 'a field guide to Tasmanian Fungi’. It was a wet, drizzly, wonderful day which is rather perfect for fungi spotting :)
 'Family Fungi Foray' 
Oh and for Mother's Day? I was given apple crates and a big pile of chicken poop! Perfect! hehe
Gardening with R
Gardening with R...
TL: Discovering the last of the Autumn-fruiting raspberries
TR: Harvesting rhubarb
BL: Planting rocket seed, saved from summer
BR: Planting giant Russian garlic bulbs

Week 2

Letter L
This week we explored the letter L using an Aboriginal Dreamtime story of courage and bravery called, ‘GA:NI King of the Lizards’ We discovered the letter L in Ga:ni the Lizard himself, of course. 
Story: ‘GA:NI King of the Lizards'

TL: Blackboard drawing - L is for Lizard
TC: Story Puppetry
TR: MLB Picture Alphabet

ML: Wax resist watercolour letter
MC: Making the Letter L with our bodies
MR: Walking the Letter  L

BL: Lemonade!
BC: Modelling the Letter L
BR: Letter Practise
Along with the story, we did our ABC Yoga postures for the Letter L, we made lemonade, made lavender scented bags, we painted, modelled and wrote the Letter L. We played Letter L charades (Leopard Seal, Lorikeet, Little Pygmy Possum, Lion, Lizard, Lamb, Lounge, Leap, Lie Down etc) and made up silly songs and rhymes about the letter. 

When exploring the phonics of the Letter L, we noticed that our mouth position can be different. The boys really enjoyed saying this little verse:

L is a gentle letter, it trills and glides along…
Lark in the tree trillllllllling trilllllllllling
Loon on the lake gllllllliding glllllllllliding

Natural Sciences with L
We did two fun science experiments this week. For the first one, we used a little left over lemon juice from our lemonade to make invisible ink and wrote secret messages and treasure maps for each other, only discovering the magic when we applied heat to the acidic writing.
Invisible writing with Lemon juice
We also explored how leaves drink - looking at the leaf structure of different leaves and then putting Chinese cabbage leaves in dye to watch how the colour spreads through the leaf. It moved far more quickly that we thought and the final result was spectacular. Our dedicated ‘Natural Sciences’ day is really turing out to be a highlight of our week.
Experiment: Learning about how leaves drink
Gardening with L...
TL: Planting Lupins for green cover crop
TR: Transplanting Leeks
BL: Planting Lettuce seed
BR: Harvesting Lavender for scented gift bags

Week 3

Trip to NW Coast
We spent this week in Devonport, on the NW coast of Tasmania, travelling up there with Daddy for work. While he went off to work each day, the boys and I took the car and explored around Devonport and Burnie. We particularly enjoyed the Tiagarra Aboriginal Rock Art Cultural Walk at the Mersey Bluff in Devonport. 

We also spent a lovely rainy afternoon at the Burnie Regional Museum. We learned about the history of Burnie and the North West region, and the boys both enjoyed 'Federation Street', which gave us a glimpse what life was like in 1900 when Burnie was a bustling town of 1500 people at the height of its first economic boom. Mr 6 was particularly interested in the tin mining and railway history of the area.
TL: Tiagarra Rock Art
TR: Mersey Bluff Lighthouse
BL: Mersey Bluff playground
BR: Burnie Regional Museum
Other Happenings...
On the Friday of this week, our usual homeschool gathering day, we met with friends to make a large batch of locally sourced, organic beeswax tea light candles. While the children play together happily all day, us mamas spent the day in the kitchen drinking (giant) cups of tea, talking non-stop and pouring the deliciously scented melted beeswax. Every now and then a child would drift in to help line up the cups or pop the wicks in, but mostly they played outdoors, enjoying the Autumn sunshine.

Week 4

Letter T
This week we explored the letter T. I told a story drawing on elements from  ’The Autumn Blanket’ by S. Perrow and ‘Mother Earth and the Leaves’ by P. Rubano, and adapting it to our little corner of the Southern Hemisphere. During the telling of the story, the boys and I wove our own blanket on a ‘God’s Eye’ twig and twine weaving frame we'd made, woven with Autumn leaves, sheep wool, grasses, berries and feathers we’d collected on our Autumn walks.
Story: ‘The Autumn Blanket'

Large Pic: Story Puppetry
TR: Watercolour painting, Letter T
MC: Modelling Letter T
BL: Chalkboard drawing - T is for Tree
BR: Letter practise
On our story table:
Our little Container Story family standing under the Autumn blanket we woven.

We explored the Letter T in different ways... 

We enjoyed playing charades using T movements:
Tip Toeing

We had fun with T Yoga Poses:

Here are some of the Tongue Twisters we had fun with…
The two-twenty-two train tore through the tunnel.

Two tiny tigers take two taxis to town.

A tree toad loved a she-toad
That lived up in a tree.
She was a three-toed tree toad,
But a two-toed toad was he.
The two-toed toad tried to win
The she-toad's friendly nod,
For the two-toed toad loved the ground
On which the three-toed tree toad trod.
But no matter how the two-toed treetoad tried,
He could not please her whim.
In her three-toed bower,
With her three-toed power,
The three-toed she-toad vetoed him.
Tiny Tim
I have a little turtle
His name is Tiny Tim
I put him in the bathtub
to teach him how to swim.

He drank up all the water
and ate up all the soap
Now he is home, sick in bed
with bubbles in his throat.

I miss my little turtle,
whos name is Tiny Tim
I will call him on the telephone--
I would like to visit him.

Tiny Tim is better now...
his tummy doesnt hurt...
He will never eat the soap again...
he says it doesnt work. 

Tick Tick Tock, goes the clock.
Your arm is the tick, your other is the tock.
Your face is the face of a grandfather clock!
Now stand very tall like the clock in the hall.

Australian Native Animals beginning with T:
Tassie Devil
Tassie Tiger/Thylacine
Tiger Quoll (Spotted Tail Quoll)
Thornbill (bird)

Gardening with T:
We had our first proper snow this week! It was so glorious to watch the snowflakes swirl and flurry down, blown into wild white flurries by the wind. We did managed to get some gardening in before the snow arrived. We harvest the last of the tomatoes and hung the vines upside down in the shed to keep ripeningsome of the green tomatoes. 
Gardening with Letter T…
We planted Tulip bulbs, Turnips seeds and trimmed Thyme
The Winter Garden

Handwork & Artwork

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