Awesome Archaeology: Lesson Plan #1

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Last month I mentioned that we’d be doing a full-on archaeology dig for science this year.

I’m terrified, but it’s time we dig in.  As we dig in, I thought it would be great to share my archaeology lesson plans and printables and other fun stuff with you guys!

THE BASICS

Our text will be Hands-On Archaeology: Real-Life Activities for Kids by John White.  It is an insanely great book for teaching for-real archaeology to kids.

The book provides quite a few worksheets, but to make it more colorful and fun, I decided to make a few printables to go along with each lesson.

Each lesson is primarily put together by Mr. White, but I’ll be providing some filler and extras.  Some of the lessons might not make much sense until you get the book.

The lessons I’ll be doing are designed to be used with this book.

LESSON 1: BUILD A CONTACT LIST

The overarching purpose of this project is to do an actual archaeological dig, complete with real tools, forms, and other supplies.

All the while, your child is practicing math, geography, grammar, handwriting, and tons more.

Before you can start hacking away at the earth, Mr. White recommends building a list of archaeologists your child can consult as they begin their project.

You never know what kind of helpful info they’ll provide.

For this lesson, I’ve designed a fun little printable to help Babydoll flesh out this list.

She’ll determine the types of contacts she’d like to have {professors, local archaeologists, etc.}, where she can find info about these contacts {phone book, website, etc.}, what questions she might have for them, whether she’d like to email or call, a deadline for answers to her questions, and then the final contact list.

You can download the printable here.

Be sure to have access to the internet, phone books, and any other resources available.

This information will eventually be used to contact the list and get tips and ideas for the dig.

If you have a child who would love to do a dig or learn more about archaeology, download the printable and purchase the book now so you can follow along throughout the year!

Sweet Phenomena Went to the Beauty Parlor!

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That’s right; things are different around here!  Sweet Phenomena felt it was high time she had a makeover.

I’m absolutely gushing; I’m rather pleased with what she chose.  If you’re reading this in your reader or email, you must visit the blog to check out the changes.

Here’s a rundown of the work she had done:

  • NEW LOGO - This is a pretty obvious change.  The cupcake juggling lady has served her purpose.  She was a lovely lady, but she needed a break.
  • NEW COLORS - You’ll still find tons of pink, because it wouldn’t be SP without it.  The shade is slightly different, but I think it fits well with the blue and orange.
  • NEW LAYOUT – I wanted something that was more of a jumping-off point for visitors, so I’m glad the makeover included a homepage, as opposed to just the blog.  Visitors will be able to choose which direction they’d like to head in, while still viewing the latest blog posts at the bottom.
  • SWEET STUFF – Vince had a genius idea for a rogue space in the middle of the homepage.  I didn’t like the original intent for the space, so was going to scrap it but Babydoll and I agreed it needed to stay for the flow of the page.  You’ll now find a Sweet Stuff section, which will house rotating content, anything from important updates to great quotes to sales and promotions!
  • SWEET SPOT - Right past the Sweet Stuff section you’ll find the latest blog posts on the left, and the Sweet Spot on the right.  This area houses three great posts that I think make for some great reading.
  • NEW CONTENT – Not only has Sweet Phenomena gotten a face lift, but the squishy, fun stuff on the inside has gotten a revamp as well.  You’ll find a new About pageFAQ page, a starting point for homeschoolers, a starting point for new readers, and a portfolio page with some of my readers’ favorite posts.

You’ll probably find several other little things, but these are the most prominent changes.

The space feels fresh, new, and exciting to me.  I can’t wait to continue adding more great content that really meets the needs of you guys!

So, what do you think?

 

A Homeschool Parent’s Guide to Traditional School Parents

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I’ve seen several guides written for public school parents meant to help them understand homeschoolers.  These are generally meant to be tongue-in-cheek, but amidst all the hilarity is a genuine desire to really open the eyes of “the other side.”

These guides can actually be quite helpful, especially for those who have only been on one side of the fence.  As I read, I began thinking to myself: “What about a guide for homeschoolers? Surely they should have a guide too.”

Before we started homeschooling, we sent our daughter to a private Montessori, and if we still lived in WA, she’d still be going there.  We absolutely loved her school, and she did too.

I’ve been on the other side.  While I’ve never sent her to public school, I have been a “traditional” school parent, and I myself went to public school.

So here, my homeschooling friends, is your guide.

THE VAST MAJORITY OF US CARE DEEPLY ABOUT OUR CHILD’S EDUCATION.

I didn’t spend months going from school to school attempting to find the best for Babydoll because I thought that would be a great use of my time.  Just because folks don’t homeschool doesn’t mean they don’t see the value in a great education for their child.

ENJOYING CHILD-FREE TIME DOESN’T MEAN YOUR CHILD ISN’T LOVED.

Yes, as a homeschool mom, I think it a little odd to hear the sighs of relief once kids head back to school each year.  I enjoy the company of my daughter, and I missed her when she went away to school.  I did enjoy the time to myself I had, though, and all the things I could get done during that time.  That didn’t mean that I couldn’t stand being around my daughter.

WE DON’T ALL SIT AROUND AND TALK ABOUT “THOSE CRAZY HOMESCHOOLERS.”

Frankly, many of us have better stuff to do with our time than to spend copious amounts of it concerning ourselves with what you do in your house.  While I didn’t really know anything about homeschooling before I started, I didn’t think they were freaks at all.  Well, not most anyway…

ASKING QUESTIONS DOESN’T MEAN WE THINK YOU’RE A COMPLETE LOSER WHO CAN’T POSSIBLY EDUCATE YOUR CHILD.

I know many folks only “know” about homeschoolers based on what’s in popular media.  A genuine curiosity about the process doesn’t equal a disdain for the process.

MANY OF US SPEND QUITE A BIT OF TIME ON OUR CHILD’S EDUCATION.

I was up at Babydoll’s school every single week.  The first year I volunteered to be the mom who sat with each kid as they read to me for fifteen minutes.  At first, I’m not going to lie, I wasn’t a fan.  But after each kid became comfortable with me and I was able to see the progress they made, it was one of my favorite things.  I helped out at her school, I was involved.  Many parents do the same.

SOME OF US MIGHT WANT TO HOMESCHOOL, BUT WE CAN’T FOR ANY NUMBER OF REASONS.

Just because someone isn’t homeschooling doesn’t mean they don’t want to.  Just because you can handle being a single mom, working, and homeschooling doesn’t mean that someone else can.  Sometimes it’s just not someone’s time.

SOME OF US WOULD STILL LIKE TO SIT AROUND AND TALK TIME MANAGEMENT, CURRICULA, AND MORE WITH YOU.

Just because we don’t homeschool doesn’t mean that these things aren’t important to us.  I think any mom can benefit from the sharing of these ideas.

YOU KNOW HOW YOU DON’T LIKE FEELING YOU NEED TO EXPLAIN YOUR DECISION? NEITHER DO WE.

Sharing of ideas, eye-opening information, and a genuine desire to learn more are one thing; that uncomfortable judgmental silence is another.

WE DON’T ALL THINK YOU’RE FUNDAMENTALIST CHRISTIANS.

Sure, that’s the image that many people have in their minds of homeschoolers, but that doesn’t mean that we automatically assume that about all homeschoolers.

JUST BECAUSE WE DON’T AGREE ON SOMETHING DOESN’T MEAN WE HATE HOMESCHOOLING.

As long as their are parents and children, there will be differences of opinion on how to raise them.  That’s OK.

I just can’t get behind your desire to only expose your daughter to the wonders of housecleaning, child-rearing, and being a subservient wife.  Homeschooler or not.  My stating so is in no way a slam against homeschooling.  I hope it works for your family, but it definitely doesn’t work for mine.

This list doesn’t apply to all people, of course, but it’s a good digest of things I remember when I was “over there.”

What would you add to this list?

 

September 9, 2012

September 9, 2012

September 9, 2012 – Miss Ava and Mr. Stone posing for a photo.

September 6, 2012

September 6, 2012

September 6, 2012 – Another great find while walking Winston!