school days: houses and homes

we started a new unit study the 2nd week of january revolving around houses and homes using this site, and finished it up a few days ago.  i'm taking the rest of this week to review the unit and plan for our next study.

we didn't cover all the lessons listed for the unit, which is okay since we also do other learning activities that don't necessarily relate to the unit study.

here are the books we read for this unit (i only managed to find 3 out of the 4 core books at the library:

we were tired of living in a house by liesel skorpen
a house is a house for me by mary ann hoberman
let's go home by cynthia rylant (this was gibson's favorite, despite the fact that it was quite a lengthy read)
a house for hermit crab by eric carle
three little pigs by james marshall
in a people house by dr. seuss/theo lesieg
if i ran the rainforest by bonnie worth
henry and mudge and the tall tree house by cynthia rylant

i love, love, love the reading aspect because it provides so many opportunities for open discussion.  some of the things we talked about after reading the books included our favorite part of our house and why, comparing and contrasting the images we see of homes in the books with our own home, different types of animal homes (and people homes), home maintenance and decor, and the different cities/states/countries that some of our family live in.

our lapbook for this unit was primarily based on a house for hermit crab:
i included some of the lapbook components listed here and also added some of my own.
i laminated the months of the year cards so that emma can trace the words to practice her writing.
i also laminated and added velcro for hermit crab's year so that emma could do the activity more than once.  it was helpful to read the story first and then do the activity so that the story sequence is fresh in her mind.  on a side note, another book to read to introduce kids to the months of the year is chicken soup with rice by maurice sendak.  it's a fun book and brings back some childhood memories for me!
other lessons/activities we did relating to the unit:

we discussed how we all have our part in helping around the home to keep it tidy, clean and well maintained.

we made a home out of blankets and chairs a few times.  the kids loved "decorating" the inside and filling it with books, toys and snacks.  they even got to have their lunch in there one time.
i found a simple picture of a house and glued it onto a large sheet.  then i had emma complete the picture (watercolors was her preferred medium).
one thing i had wanted to do but didn't get around to was to procure a large world map and mark where family members live around the world.  our family is so spread out that doing something like this might help give them some perspective on how far or close family members are to us.  i'll have to save this one for another time.

and here's what gibson did while big sister completed some of the lessons that were not yet suited for his age:

sticking stickers on paper and himself (and sometimes the floor and the furniture)...this is a popular one with him.

coloring.  in this photo he wanted to use markers like his big sister so i gave him some laminated number cards and a dry erase marker and let him go to town (clean up was very easy!).
putting coins (pretend and real ones) in an empty canister and emptying it back out.
 digging out the library bin and "reading" his books.

playing with this foamy thingy i got at pat catan's.
"sorting" shells in the muffin tin...which sometimes turned into throwing shells all over the floor.

and now on to our next study.  emma has specifically requested a unit study on winter so that is what we'll do next!


Connie Krebs said...

great job! homeschooling for you would be a breeze!

Mamajil said...

Awesome unit study, Looks like you guys enjoying home schooling!! I love love love the velcro idea!! and the lap book is simply adorable!!

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