Friday, March 25, 2011

Den's drawing progress Part III

I realized I have not been updating Den's drawing progress. Believe me it is not because she stop drawing! Ive more than a whole shelve of drawing...and not to mention the one I threw away secretly...Shhhhh! The last couple of days has been rather stressful - Den and I had food poisoning, Den first ballet exam, etc etc and I need some cheering up. Her drawing always cheer me up, so here you go:

May 2010 Girl in high heels

May 2010 Girls with cross necklaces 

May 2010 Girl in pigs' farm

May 2010 Elephant

May 2010 Cute house

May 2010 Swam lake

May 2010 Dancing

May 2010 more dad & mom's wedding

June 2010 Our apartment on the 9th floor

July 2010 Girl in veil

July 2010 Native American

Aug 2010 Tree of knowledge/Garden of Eden

Oct 2010 EE dancing in KY's wedding

Oct 2010 curly hair

Oct 2010 more wedding...I should start a new collection on wedding drawing!

Oct 2010 girls with scary teeth

Nov 2010 Girls

Dec 2010 a big hole on the ground

22 March 2011 My favorite - Den got a new pair of glasses that day!

27 March 2011 The Royal family and their pets- unicorns!

27 March 2011 Who am I?

March 2011 Barbie, she color Barbie and designed 3 new dresses
03 April 2011 Princess Den sing a song and bring a flower for her mommy Queen

03 April 2011 Mommy Queen and Princess Den

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Lesson with 4 years old XE on 19 March

I probably should have blog about what we did on Mon, Wed and Fri but I think there are more readers out there waiting for I decided to do this first.

If you read my blog from last year, you should be quite familiar with XE, the little one who used to come over to our house twice weekly whenever we were in SG. A few of you have responded and said you liked what I did with her in a series of lessons with a 3.5 years old  (please see 2010 archives)  and you when you used the same lessons with your kids, they responded positively. I am very happy to hear that. I hope those lessons can be served as examples and you can progress from there.

XE turn 4 two weeks ago and she started going to kindergarten this year, so she is no longer coming over unless it is a school holiday like this week.

We actually went to the Art & Craft Exhibition and the library 5th anniversary celebration together but she was very reserved in both occasions and did not want to participate. That make me a bit worry about today (19 March! It took me two days to finish this!!) lesson. I was worry may be since she had not been to our house for sometime, she might need times to warm up (is like starting all over again!). However, when she turn up at our apartment today, she was not shy at all and acted as if she has been here everyday! I was very pleased.

XE was late today, so we did not get to do all the things I planned. However we had a very good time together. Our theme today is Pride. 

(A)We started off with the memory verse. 

Don't do anything out of selfish ambition. Don't do it because you are proud. Instead, be free of pride. Think of others as better than yourselves.  ~ Philippians 2:3

It was not an easy verse to remember but added with actions and a few repetitions, they managed to remember most of it. I explained the verse and we prayed.

(B)We used the following videos from Youtube as Praise and worship:

1. Jesus Loves Me (Go fish version. I love Go fish songs!)
3. My Redeemer Lives (Hillsong)
4. 恩典之路 (The Journey of Grace -Den fallen in love with this song after she sang it in our MLY Sunday School)

As you can see there were lots of jumping and dancing, so by the time we were at the last songs we were all out of breath! But what a fun time to shout and dance and praise our all mighty God together! May be I should do this more often with Den.

(C) Story: Emperor's New Clothes - Since we are going to study this as a one off lesson, I decided to let them watch a Youtube Movie instead of reading from book. We watch the first one but may be you will like the second one better:

As mention previously, most of the lessons I did with XE were taken from Lesson Pathway (if you haven't check it out, you really should!) Language Art. In its' Emperor's New Clothes lesson plan, it also include a few interesting links we did not have the time to use:

Read story here
Read and listen to story here

If I do this as two part lessons like I usually do, I will use the read aloud in the first lesson and only let them watch the video on the 2nd lesson.

After the lesson, we talked about out how foolish were the adults, all of them were so proud and would not want to be looked down by others and thus fallen into the trap. Only the little child said what he see! We prayed together and asked God to help us to see others better than ourselves.

(D) Lunch Break

(E) Craft -
Before we did our craft, we read about how the author of Emperor's New Clothes, Hen Christian Anderson like to do paper cutting! He carried with him a scissor everywhere he went. That is new for me too. The link is here.

So in the tradition of Anderson, we did paper cutting too! 

I preprinted paper dolls and different hair styles for them to cut and paste (link is here). Den was cutting really well and I did not have to help her at all. XE was much better compared to last year, a few months can really make a lot of differences especially to a young child. I still have to help her to cut some of the more difficult part. 

Both of them chosen the same hair style for their dolls (XE wanted to follow the big jie jie!).

After that, I help them drew the dress and crown (according to what they wanted) for them to cut and color/designed. These are the final products:
XE's doll
Den's doll
Thats all we had the time to do! There are some other very interesting things listed in Pathway Lessons that I wished we had more time to do them:

(i) Invisible Art from (I cut and pasted this fun activity here)

What You Need:
·         4 tablespoons baking soda
·         4 tablespoons water
·         Small bowl
·         Q-tip or cotton ball
·         Sheet of white paper
·         Watercolor paint
·         Paint brush

What You Do:
1.       Mix the baking soda with the water thoroughly in the bowl.
2.       Lay out the sheet of paper in front of your child and hand her a Q-tip.
3.       Have her dip the Q-tip in the baking soda mixture and paint an "invisible" picture on the paper. In the spirit of The Emperor's New Clothes, encourage her to paint a picture of the Emperor in his brand new outfit. Just like in the story, it's invisible!

4.       Set the painting aside until it's completely dry.
5.       Once dry, have her paint the picture with watercolors. Watch her eyes light up as the Emperor's clothes magically appear. Unlike in the story, these clothes turned out to be real after all!

 (ii) Read and play dress up game at here

Hope you will have as much fun as we did!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

School Trips

I'm not sure if it is good or not good for Den but she has a mom who think activities are equally (if not more) important than seat work, so we always jump to the chance for field trips and activities. 

This week is school holidays in SG (and MLY), so there are more kids' activities. Through our SG homeschooling group, we get to know an interesting art and craft exhibition at Raffle City Shopping Center called "Children Of Asia". It featured about 20 artisans from Cambodia, India and Sri Lanka. 

It is supposed to have hand on activities but the press release never specified what kind of activities and to what age group it cater to. There is the problem with free programs like this, you have to go there in order to know if it is any good. We decided to give it a try last Sat (12 March) since we had nothing on that day. 

There were not many hand on and the artisans at the fair though very friendly, had zero experiences working with kids and yet despite all these, we spent 2 hours there and enjoyed our selves very much. I think it has a lot to do with Den's attitude. From a very shy and reserved child, she has grew into a confident young girl. She tried her hand on everything she can, even on station that was for viewing only, she pester the person in charged until she let her tried her hand on!

Silk Cocoons
One of the thing I find most interesting in the exhibition was the silk cocoons. Den saw these and right away asked me if the caterpillar still alive inside. I asked the organizer and she cant answer me, so she asked around and came back and told me, these cocoons were from silk cocoons farm. After caterpillars changed into cocoons, the farmer sun the cocoons. The hot sun killed the caterpillar inside the cocoons.

Boil cocoons and separate the silk fiber
Den get to do it finally!
After that, the cocoons were boil in hot water and the workers separated the silk fibers to make silk thread. Because of the hot water, this station is only for demo and not hand on but Den really want to try it her self. After going back to the station again and again and finally the Cambodia jie jie let her do it!!

After that the worker used a loom to wave the silk thread into silk cloth. We studied about loom in our history but Den has never seen one in real life. In this exhibition, not only she get to see it, she get to work on it for a long long time. Not many children at the exhibition wanted the hand on activities (I'm not sure why!), so Den monopolized the loom for a long long time. The Cambodia jie jie in charged of the loom teasingly told her she can come and work in Cambodia. 

After the cloth was done, it was dye into different pattern using natural dye. Den wished she can do this too but was told she cant! :(
Dyeing is a very tedious process
These natural materials are used as dye
In this exhibition, Den not only get to work on one type of loom but three! One of the hand loom was placed too high (adult height), so she had to give up after a few try. But no fear, she went on to try out another type and this time the thread fiber was taken from plants!! And when the cloth was done, it could be make into wallet, handbag or other colorful and amazing product (displayed on Den's left).

After weaving the plant fiber thread into clothes, it can be make into all those beautiful products on Den's left.
At the paper craft station, Den make a beautiful paper rose, I jokingly asked her to make me 600 for mother's day! 

In this exhibition we also get to see some other interesting craft like stone craving, wood craving, jewelry making and floor mat making.

making floor mat
We also watched some cultural dances at the fair. Before we left, the Cambodia jie jie working on the boiling cocoon station was so taken by Den that she gave her some cocoon to take home with her!

Today, the library we always go to celebrated 5th anniversary. I was debating if we should attend the activities there or stay home and study...finally decided to go so that we can try our hand on Henna drawing. We learned about Henna in Sonlight's My Passport to India and now we were given the opportunity to have henna drawing on our hands!

Henna on Den's hand when it was still wet. Have to wait til it was dry before washing.
Henna after washing, it will last a few days.
Henna on my hand.
Stick on tattoo on Den's arm!

Part of the Origami craft program that taught us how to make a paper vase and it was just nice for our paper rose from the art and craft exhibition last Sat.
Since school going kids have field trip, I decided these can be counted as our field trips as well! ^^

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The past one week

It has been an unbelievably busy week and totally out of expectation, we ended up babysitting for 3 afternoons for a friend, saw two eye docs (one eye Sergent and one eye therapy) and went through a very long fitting for a pair of new glasses (2 hours!!). Good news is Den get lots of playtime (which is as important as sit down lessons in my book) and eye doc think her eyes are going very well (as far as her squint concerned. Thank you Lord!). Bad news is her eyes went from long sighted to short sighted in a year (about 100 degree difference!!!) and thus were advised to get a pair of very expensive glasses that hopefully can slow that down. Another bad news...we did not get much time for study, so we just squeezed in some schooling here and there.

This is the summary of what we did:

1. Bible - Den is very good with Matt 6:33 song now. We also managed to finished reading 5 stories from I Heard Good News Today and thus finished Sonlight WK 19 history. At my previous posting, I blog about some of the amazing stories we read from I Heard Good News Today, a friend wrote to me after she read my blog and asked where can she get books like these. Off cause the first thing I said is Sonlight! ^^ We read so many amazing Christian books from Sonlight Pre K and K. Having said that it is very expensive to buy from Sonlight if you live in MLY and not getting the whole core, so I also recommended the following, you can get these from local Christian bookstores like Canaanland:

(a) Little Lights series - I bought 4 books from these series - Corrie ten Boom, George Muller, Amy Carmichael and Hudson Taylor. David Livingstone and Helen Roseveare are coming soon. They especially suitable for younger kids (4+). One thing I like about this series is each book started the story when the famous Christian was still a child and that give a positive impression that all these famous Christian were just a little kid like us. It also imply that if we are willing, we can all do great thing for the Lord! RM23.90 each from Canaanland. You can read more here.


Close this window(b) Heroes For Young Readers series - It has 25 books, I only brought 4 (all female^^) - Corrie Ten Boom, Lottie Moon, Amy Carmichael and Ida Scudder. I would love to get my hand on Gladys Alyward but it was out of stock when I was at the bookstore. Very beautifully written in captivating rhyming poems. We love them. I read one of them to Den and her friend two Sat ago, even my 3 months old niece was listening attentively!! RM 19.90 each from Canaanland. You can read more here.

2. Chinese lessons- 
a) For conversation/new vocab lesson, I make up a song to teach Den some of the vocab about playground, she was having a hard time to remember all these new vocab but with the help of the song, she managed:

(Tune: 郊游)
游乐场 游乐场 (playground, playground)
滑梯秋千翘翘板 (slide, swing and seesaw)
真是好玩 (very fun to play)
我还要在去玩 (I want to go again)

b) Chinese Read Aloud - Ops! Only managed to read a book this week!! Not good! 

你很快就会长高 (You'll Soon Grow Alex by Andrea Shavick) A very fun story about a boy who is very sad because he is very short despite doing everything he can to grow taller. Later, his very tall uncle show him being tall can be troublesome too sometime and teach him a very important lesson - choose to be happy despite his height.

c) Den Chinese Reading - We have been on and off using Basic Chinese 500 (基础汉字500) for awhile -It works like the Peter & Jane series - build up the words steps by steps. For example, this is Peter, this is Jane, this is Peter and Jane that kind of thing. It has Han Yu Ping Ying as well as English subtitle. 

Recently I decided it is time to pick it up again but this time, I covered all the Han Yu Ping Ying because I realized even though I had never teach Den Han Yu Ping Ying, she has kind of figure it out her self and has been relying on it instead of memorizing the actual word. It takes quite an effort to block out all those Han Yu Ping Ying (I'm almost done with one book and there are a lot more to go!) but I think it is worth the effort.

d) Chinese Copywork - she wrote 里(inside), 很 (very) and 两(two) - words that I realized she was not familiar with when she did her her reading in Basic Chinese 500 Book 3.

(a) CLP Language Art workbook 103 - She did Lesson 2, 3, 4, 5 and Quiz 1. As I wrote in my previous blog, she make a lot of careless mistakes during quizzes and tests. When confronted, she told tell me since she actually knew how to do it, I should not worry about the mark!!!

I have been cracking my head, thinking of ways to solve this...did not think punishment is a good idea in this case. Two Sat ago, her friend EE came and play. EE attend Homeschooling Center and she told me whenever she got 100% in her test, her teacher gives her a small present! That gave me the idea. I put some of the trinkets I brought for her (I always buy any cheap and interest trinkets whenever I see them and keep them for "special occasions" - like when I need to have long conversation with friend or Im not well and no one can take care of Den- to bring them out and that can pretty much keep her busy and happy for awhile) and put them into a special box. I told her if she can get 96-100% in her quizzes and tests, she can pick one item out from the special box. 

It works! She checked and rechecked her quiz and got 100% mark! ^^ She chose a blow art kits (RM2.99), we have not had the time to experiment it yet. May be tomorrow, hopefully.

(b) English Comprehension - she did 3 lessons from Disney Princess Reading Comprehension (I blog about this previously, if you are interested, read it here.) She finished the whole workbook except for the review questions. A years ago, this was still too difficult for her and is almost too easy! How much she grew in a year!

(C) Read Aloud - We did 4 chapters of In Grandma's Attic

(d) Reading - I brought Roald Dahl's George's Marvellous Medicine for her (and Vile Verses for me!!) last Thurs, she finished reading on Friday. I really need SG library!!! Talking about SG library, we have access to the SG online resources as well and I downloaded (legally!!) Roald Dahl's Fantastic Mr. Fox CD (1hr) and The Witches CD (3 hrs). We has been listening to Fantastic Mr. Fox and going to keep The Witches for the long family trip coming up in May. 


(e) Copywork - She did 3 English copyworks this week.

4) Math:
a) She did 2 Sudoku - she is working on 9x9 puzzle now.

b) We started using a workbook I brought quite sometime ago - Mental Maths Strategies Year 2 (by Synergy Media. RM8.90 Popular). It cover all the topics/concept a Year 2 students are supposed to understand. I find the workbook interesting and the questions are put in a way really testing if the student understand the basic concept well. She did parts of the Unit 1-4 (some sections are too easy and I let her skip) this week and from these, I realized, she still making mistake in naming the month of the year (she misplaced October) and even though she knew what is a "corner", she has problem when asked to differentiate shapes that has or has no corner (she kept thinking circle has "corner" because her definition of corner was "where two ends meet"!)

5) Craft: I found this series of amazing paper craft books from Daiso for only RM5 each. In each book, there are about 19-22 pre printed pattern to fold and cut. It is fantastic for eye hand coordination and kept Den occupied for hours (especially for times in the restaurant waiting for food!!). We only work on book 1 (it get harder and harder) and look at these  fantastic patterns she cut (I can feel my hands are itching! May be I will start cutting on Book 3!):