Classical Conversations || New Foundations Guide Curriculum || Review & Comparison

What’s your favorite thing about the new edition? Let us know in the comments below. In 2017 we started classical conversations, and we loved it. Now the new foundations book is here! Hooray! Let’s take a look inside and see how it’s different from the 4th edition.

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What’s in the Bookstore at the Classical Conversations Parent Practicum? Curriculum Shop With Me!

The Parent Practicum is a homeschool conference for Classical Conversations families. We just started with CC last year and we loved it. Now let’s take a look at what’s for sale in the Practicum bookstore! I love books!

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Classical Conversations Practicum Haul || Foundations Curriculum

We just started with CC last year and we loved it. Check out the homeschool supplies we picked up at the Classical Conversations Parent Practicum!

Subscribe to our YouTube channel for unit, supply, library book hauls, DITL curriculum reviews and homeschool adventures!

 

How We Use Seasonal, Monthly & Weekly PEG DOLLS in our Perpetual Calendar

Hooray! The Calendar Peg dolls are finally completed! We made Winter, Spring, Summer & Autumn as well as all the months of the year and the days of the week. Felt, yarn, watercolors & acrylic paints were used to make these happen and a felt tip pen for the lettering. Now it’s time to set up our calendar of peg dolls!

Days of the Week, Calendar Peg Dolls | DIY

Hello Friends!

I have decided to try my hand at making calendar peg dolls. The internet is full of beautiful images of Waldorf inspired wooden peg dolls that look like they’re from a fairy tale land. So naturally I am intrigued. My plan is to start with the days of the week and then add the months of the year, seasons and eventually weather.

I’ve been trying to keep this a secret from Songbird but apparently I am really bad at hiding things and she’s getting taller. One of the Thursday dolls that I messed up on was on the counter way in the back and she saw it, which filled her with questions.

You will need:

These are the set of unfinished dolls I used. The medium size was smaller than I expected but they will work for the days of the week. My plan is to make each consecutive set of dolls bigger than the next. This way when grouped together, they stand out and add visual interest. For example the day is Monday and that’s the smallest doll, the month is January and that one is bigger and the season is winter and that one is the largest of all. I plan to represent the date with a set of numbered river rocks rocks I made. This way we will have an interactive perpetual calendar!

At first I tried to just feel what color Monday should be but I didn’t want to inflict it with all the complicated grown-up associations. So instead, I decided to do rainbow colors which is perfect since there are seven colors in the rainbow and seven days of the week!

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My paint was nothing fancy I simply used a set of regular crayola watercolors and drew faces with a fine felt tip pen.

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I really like the look of the dolls without faces, but I know my daughter. She would think something was missing and would probably draw faces on them herself. So to avoid that conflict I decided to give them very sweet and simple faces. Some of them look happy, some look amused, some look thoughtful and some look crazy.

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Well, I must have been distracted because, for some reason I could not get Thursday right. In my head I would say T-H-U-R-S-D-A-Y but my hand would spell Thusday. When I did spell it right I made the stem of the “h” to tall and it intersected with the top of the capital “T”.

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I then cutout little triangles of felt to make head scarves for the girls. It was very simple and needs no pattern. Just cut a small triangle out of the felt and see it if it fits. If it’s too big trim it down.

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Add a dab of hot glue to the dolls head and lay the felt triangle over it. You have a little bit of wiggle room to get it just right. But if it dries and you don’t like it, you can carefully pull the glue off the wood.

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Press down the front two points of the triangle so that they are on the dolls neck and shoulders, glue those down too with a dab of hot glue.

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The back part will be sticking out, so add a little bit of glue to the back of their head and press that down as well. Voila, now you have sweet folk tale peg doll girls.

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For the boys I carefully painted their heads to look like they had hair. For the hair parts I just left a line unpainted. There is seriously something weird going on with Thursday and I think Saturday looks slightly insane.

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But all together I think they turned out great in that quirky handmade way. My daughter has already started playing with them and they are the new favorite toy!

Labeling the World’s Oceans| Kindergarten Geography | Sea Life Unit

We started our Sea Life Unit by learning about the worlds oceans.  We looked at them on a map in the book Simon & Schuster Children’s Guide to Sea Creatures and talked about where they are on the globe.

Then we painted a blank piece of paper blue with our LYRA Watercolors. I used this for a world map I cut it out myself, it took a long time and sadly a few islands got missed (I’m sorry U.K. & Japan!) But the point of this project was just to be able to locate and identify the oceans not the countries. We will definitely cover that later!

It took some time, cutting out the world, and eventually I had to step away to take care of Man Cub. Mean while my daughter played with the continents and toob sea creatures and made her own pangea-like arrangements.

Once cut out, we glued the continents to our blue painted page to make a simple world map.

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I wrote down the names of the oceans on our LCD writing tablet and she copied it, in felt-tip pen, in the appropriate place on our map.

I simply asked her to write small and I think she did an amazing job. We labeled the Arctic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean & Indian Ocean.

This turned out so nice, it will probably be the first page of our Sea Life Unit lesson book. So how do you teach geography to your children? I would love to hear your tips & techniques in the comments below 😀

Making a Felt Sea Star Toy | DIY

We had been outside, in the humid spring air, collecting the fluffy clouds of the kapok tree and we knew we wanted to use them to make a project, so I came up with this stuffed sea star to fit in with our Sea Life Unit.

I used what I had on hand, two pieces of purple felt that were about 8 1/2 x 11 1/2. But you could use fleece or any material that doesn’t unravel.

You will need

For some reason I was really struggling to draw the starfish. I kept thinking about seam allowance and making it really chunky. My daughter saw me getting frustrated and said confidently, “It’s OK. I’ll draw a sea star and you can just copy it”.  Her sea star was so amazing that I completely agreed and here is said echinoderm. (She added clothing)

So I traced what she drew, making it just a little larger and finally got my imperfectly perfect sea star pattern! You can download it for free by joining our Eclectic Homeschoolers Group on FB 😀

I cut it out, pinned it to the two layers of felt and cut around it. Then I got some black and white felt scraps and, free hand, cut out eyes and a mouth for the face. We discussed putting the face in the middle where it is actually located in nature, but my daughter preferred it to be on one of the arms, so that is what we did.

You could also glue on googly eyes or use a black sharpie to draw the face.

Then, using a chain stitch, I stitched almost all the way around the sea star, leaving an open section for adding the stuffing. This actually took a while because half way through my daughter commandeered the needle & thread, proclaiming that she wanted to try sewing herself. Now I’m not one to quench a child’s inspiration so the sea star and I waited patiently until she was done. The result was that my daughter did some actual stitching on a scrap of felt and we were all tremendously proud of her!

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We used “stuffing” from the Kapok Tree or silk floss tree that has been dropping these soft fluffy fibers for weeks. But batting would work just as well.

We had to remove some of the black seeds but we left a few in on purpose. One day we might feel a hard seed through the felt and remember our excursion to collect the fluffy clouds and the fun we had as we cut and stitched the purple sea star.

We stuffed the little guy until he was full of silk floss and I sewed up the opening.

Little songbird really loved this toy. I was flattered and humbled by how delighted she was. It means so much to be able to personally create something for your children that they will love. She played with it for hours and a week later it is still her favorite toy!

Have you made toys for your children? Please tell me all about it in the comments below!