Wednesday, January 13, 2016

A Heart-full Kindergarten Valentines Day

We had a really fun Valentines last of my favorite lessons ever. 

I started planning for Valentines A LONG TIME in advance.  You see, my homeschooler has two older brothers who go to public school, and I knew he might feel a little jealous when they came home with a bag full of Valentine's cards and candy.   So, in January I sent out requests to some other homeschoolers I knew and some of his friends from church to send him Valentines, and we sent some Valentines to them too.  (BONUS:  It was really good way to get my son to practice his handwriting!). 

Then, when Valentines day finally came, here's what we did....

That morning before they woke up, I laid out a special treat for all three boys at the kitchen table...a candy bar wrapped with a cool wrapper I found over at Chica Club Circle.  (They're big Minecraft fans.  They loved it!)
After the big kids were off to school it was time for homeschool.  But first, I went out to check our mailbox.  My friends told me they'd sent the valentines, but NONE of them had come yet.  But sure enough, there was a handwritten letter covered in Valentines stickers right on the top of the pile.  I shut the box and ran to get my son so he could "check the mail."  He was totally excited to see a letter with his name on it and find the Valentine with the sucker from his friend  inside (and even more excited when the other Valentines came a little later). 

Candy Heart Science

ACTIVITY 1:  Corinthians 13
While he ate his sucker I read him the passage on love from Corinthians 13. Then we drew a picture of something we could do to show someone we loved them, using a page from a freebie by A Cupcake for the Teacher.    I tried to get him to write a description too, but he was resistant.   I had planned this to be a fun day, so I let it slide.

By the way, that's a picture of someone giving someone else a flower.  Why the broken heart?  He says that means love.   Ok...  We'll sort that out later.

ACTIVITY 2:  Candy Heart Mustache Measurement
Then I brought out the candy hearts!  After reading a few, and eating a few, we measured some mustaches and lips with them (using another cute TPT freebie, by Mrs. Wheeler ). 

ACTIVITY 3:  Candy Heart Sorting and Graphing
That wasn't the only thing we did with candy we practiced sorting and graphing with them too! (Free printable by Dear Wellington)

ACTIVITY 4-5:  Candy Heart Science

PART ONE:  Candy Hearts ON FIRE!

Then it was time for some Valentines science. When I told my son we were going to do an experiment with the candy hearts, he got all excited and, looking over at a candle I had burning, said "I think if you burn a candy heart it will melt!"  Well, that was NOT the activity I had planned, but THAT was worth changing plans for!   (I mean, what DO candy hearts do when they burn?  Would they even burn at all?  Now I wanted to know too!)   So I got some tweezers and held a heart over the candle, and oh, cool things happened!  Not only did the heart catch on fire, but it fizzed as it burned, and then melted....or at least that's what i THOUGHT until I did some more research.  Sugar, I learned in a very interesting article, technically, caramelizes, but doesn't really melt.   A scientist friend of mine told me the fizzing is due to impurities (air pockets and such) in the candy.

(WARNING: Candy hearts are VERY flammable...though it's easy to blow them out and it is a slow burning flame.  And luckily I had soda cups ready for our next experiment to dunk them in that hadn't worked, which is always a good idea).

 PART 2:  Sink or Float?

After we had our fun burning hearts, we did the experiment I had planned...a fun sink or float activity that is more exiting than it sounds.   Candy hearts do some fun things in soda...first they sink, but then as bubbles form around them they will pop to the surface (and then sometimes loose their bubbles and sink again)!.

My son loved it, and played with the hearts in the liquids for at least a half hour afterwards.

(I just have to pause here and say, this is why I love homeschool:  the ability to, impromptu, do a science experiment INVOLVING FIRE, and then being able to take 30 unplanned minutes to just play.). 

 We wrote down our findings on this 

8.  Lastly, we did an art project with toilet-paper rolls and paint.  Very fun.

We just folded a toilet paper tube like a heart,
dipped it in paint...

...and stamped it!

One of the types of paint formed bubbles, which covered the whole end of the heart sometimes (and made the solid silver hearts above)...that was kinda a cool surprise.  Really, just one of many surprises that day.

So what are you planning for Valentines?

This page is linked up on various
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Tuesday, January 12, 2016


I LOVE Teachers Pay's a great place to browse for when you need that just right printable.  Right now (Jan 20 - 21) they  are having a site-wide sale...with coupon code START16 you can get 10% off any product, PLUS some shops are offering additional discounts.  Three of my favorite shops are among them...

I'm NOT a TPT affiliate and don't get any commission 
for sharing this sale...all opinions are my own.  

Prince Padania

I just recently stumbled on Prince Padania and I love their shop.  They have a bunch of well done lego themed printables (like pictured above)...score!  But the real treasure is their games.  Most educational games I've stumbled on are quiz games...great for review but not great for teaching.  But many of Prince Padania's games go deeper than that, not just practicing wrote learning but exploring concepts in really creative ways.  I am seriously impressed by them.  And everything on his site seems to be on sale right now.

Dr. Dave's Science

Dr. Dave's Science has tons of fun science experiment units.  I purchased his Science of  Ancient Egypt Bundle, which teaches Science through history, after falling in love with his free sample unit on The Nile.  The bundle is marked down to $12 (from $15)...and you can also individual sections for $2.40 each if you are just interested in a particular topic (like the science of Egyptian animals, mummies, inventions, etc.)    His sale only lasts through Jan 20 (although of course the 10% coupon will still last longer).

Print Path

I've used Print Path as a Handwriting Without Tears alternative (same style letters with regular Kindergarten lines).  You can see my full review of their Handwriting Instruction Units on my Kindergarten Curriculum Review.   Over the last couple years they've also adding a bunch of content area resources (printables for art, grammar, math...even a HWT Calendar).  If you teach HWT or another non-ball and stick style print you know how hard it is to find resources for other subject that use this same style printing, so this is GOLD!  All of her stuff is marked off right now.