Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Everett the octopus and Cambria the jellyfish.

I do plan to send Everett to public school for kindergarten, but if there is one thing that makes me want to homeschool in early elementary, it is the field trips. I love seeing my kids learning and having fun through experiences, and in San Diego, it feels like there are endless possibilities. Also, it is so much more enjoyable to explore a place on a slow, quiet weekday than a busy weekend full of crowds. 

These lessons were inspired by a trip to the Birch Aquarium back in November, where Everett decided that his favorite underwater animal was seahorses, because the boys have the babies.

During our study of underwater animals, we were able to take another trip to the Birch Aquarium and two field trips to Sea World. We saw a mother octopus guarding her eggs, a baby beluga nursing, and a baby shark moving around in its egg. There was so much beauty in seeing life develop before our very eyes, and that just can't compare to what we can learn from books or inside the walls of a classroom, although we tried to make our learning at home fun, too. 

Books we enjoyed about underwater:

Underwater dress up and story telling:
We read books about octopuses, jellyfish, and other underwater creatures. Everett was an octopus and Cambria was a jellyfish, and Everett wrote a story about their adventures.

Everett the octopus:

Cambria the jellyfish:
Underwater game:
We made up a game called Eel Attack, after learning that eels can attack octopuses, and if they succeed and bite off a tentacle, the octopus can regrow it. One of us was an octopus trying to escape. The other was the eels (balloons) trying to get the octopus. It was just an excuse to run around and hit each other with balloons while yelling, "EEL ATTACK!"
Sea horse art and hide and seek:
Everett and Cambria made sea horses based on the art in Eric Carle's Mister Seahorse. The idea was to use a clothespin and a cotton ball as a sponge, then q-tips to create dots. Cambria loved sponging the paint, and Everett didn't want to. He wanted to use q-tips, and Cambria didn't want to, so they did what they wanted, and they were both really proud of their final products. Then, we read Papa's Seahorse Search and Secret Seahorse, which are both about finding hidden seahorses, so we played hide and seek with our seahorses. We took turns hiding and finding them around the house. 
Field trips to Sea World:
Watching the baby Beluga nursing was kind of a spiritual moment for me:
Field trip to the Birch Aquarium:

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