Tuesday, June 10, 2014

                                            A Preschool "Must Have" 
                               (The Smart Tray) 
Ok Moms !!!!! I am hear to tell you I found a treasure, one that every homeschool mom must have for their preschooler. Have you ever been in the middle of your day and it just seems that your younger children are constantly waiting on you. They want to be so involved that they are begging you to just give them something that is characterized as school. Do you have a preschooler that needs to keep their hands busy and wants quick  results? I now this all to well with my 4 yr old. She wants so bad to have something  to call her own . So I found this complete matching activity that is self checking and involves visual perception and critical thinking. Topics include things that go together, patterns, animals, colors, and so much more, here is level 1 Early Accelerator and the steps to complete one card.


Once your child has picked out the card they would like to complete they open the Smart Tray that has a clear lid and tiles marked 1-10. If you child hasn't mastered their number digits that is ok because each card also has the numbers on them to match in the corner. Here in this picture my daughter put her numbers in order 1-10 on the clear lid and slipped in her desired card to work. As you can see the numbers are at top and the pictures are on bottom.

She picks up the tile # 1 and matches what would go with a pirate. She places the #1 tile over the picture of the pirates flag and goes on to #2 tile working through each number until all clues are matched.    
Then she closes the clear lid with the tiles inside and checks her work. First sliding out the card out of the bottom of Smart Tray.
Once the card is out she will flip the card over and the Smart Tray to see if she got all the correct answers.
The Tray needs to match what is on the card.
So simple !!!! And yet so exciting for them to be able to check 
their own work, then on to the next card. 

Smart tray is sold separtely

Wholesome Books for the Wholehearted Family
Books can become a powerful companion
S. Clarkson
Ending the 2014 school year and starting a new one has totally gave me a sense of accomplishment but also time to sit back and reflect on what it is I would like to feed my children's hearts.  A recent article from Sarah Clarkson inspired me to add to my ongoing list of great stories, first in the bible and then in classic literature.  These classic's can allow your child to thrive in their judgment and most importantly in their character. The innocent beauty of this list will challenge your child to be noble, righteous and honorable in all ways. Sarah invites us to create a inner world of hero's for all boys and girls that will defend what is right and resist things of evil. They to will learn to perceive that it all comes down to a choice between right and wrong. Isn't that what we all would desire for our children? To walk in the ways or those who build up qualities that are glorifying to our Lord. What a glorious day it would be to see them live out these qualities in their every day lives. Lets fine tune the inner workings of their heart and form core values that set the tone for our new generation. Below I've listed some books that will add a treasure to any shelf you prop them up on.

Good Night Moon by Margaret Brown
The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Brown
Storytime and the Millers by Mildred Martin
The Complete Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter
Grade 1:
The Little Engine that Could by Watty Piper
The Little House by Virginia Burton
Wisdom and the Millers: Proverbs for Children, by Mildred Martin
Maybelle the Cable Car by Virginia Burton
Blaze and Thunderbolt by C.W. Anderson
The Snowy Days by Ezra Keats
Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina
Curious George by H.A. Rey
Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
Loving One Another by Neta Jackson
Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf
Grade 2 :
Autumn with the Moody's by Sarah Maxwell
Love you Forever by Robert Munsch
The Courage of Sarah Noble by Alice Dalgliesh
Roxaboxen by Alice McLerran
James Herriot's Treasury for Children by James Herriot
Town Mouse, Country Mouse by Jan Brett
Grade 3:
Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Brink
Sarah Whitcher's Story by Elizabeth Yates
The Bears on Hamlock Mountain by Alice Dalgliesh
Dangerous Journey: The Story of Pilgrim's Progress by Oliver Hunkin
The Barrowers by Mary Norton
Grade 4:
Treasures of the Snow by Patricia St. John
A Little Princess by Frances Burnett
Mary Jones and Her Bible by Mary Ropes
The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
The Yearling by Marjorie Rawlings
Grade 5:
Run for your life by Betty Swinford
The Side of the Mountain Trilogy by Jean Craighead George
King of the Wind by Marguerite Henry
Gentle Ben by Walt Morey
Old Yeller by Fred Gipson
 Mr. Tucket by Gary Paulsen
I pray that you inspire to seek even more classics that will enrich your child's daily life one that will help them see we are in a raging battle in our culture today for the minds and hearts of our young children. Daily we strive to equip them for a lifetime, and books are just one more tool we can use to make all we have taught them concrete. To see more books listed for higher grades go to Sarah Clarkson's Read for the Heart: Whole Books for the Wholehearted  Families: Her book offers timeless classics to modern favorites from picture books to adventure novels.