1. The People Speak brings history to life by having actors read famous words by famous Americans, like Susan B. Anthony’s speech to the judge at her suffrage trial or Matt Damon reading the Declaration of Independence.
2. This dry erase paint could transform a wall into a pretty cool schoolroom/playroom feature! We put dry erase panels up for the walls of our basement playroom for this purpose (I think they’re meant for bathrooms, just shiny white panels that happen to be dry erase and were also cheap!). Our kids LOVE to draw and write messages on the walls. 🙂 I also painted the inner panels on Victoria’s door with blackboard paint to make another fun surface to draw/write on. I got that in spray paint for about $3.
3. A friend asked for more story starters and I found a bunch of sites that have pretty neat ones, including one that even has a fun machine kids can use to generate the ideas here. My other latest homeschool related articles are up here and my latest Attachment Parenting articles are here (including the one where I said everything I wanted to tell a group of mothers the other day and haven’t gotten my nerve up to say).
Tonight started our family holiday tradition. Since we celebrate Christmas with Daryl’s family, we have our private holiday on the solstice. The night before (tonight), we open one present each, and the morning of the solstice (the shortest day of the year) is our Christmas morning. We’ll open all of our presents , spend the day together and have our family feast.
Then we’ll have a day off and start all over again. 🙂
If you want to try our little solstice ritual, here’s what it is. I found it online years ago and have no idea where it originated, but our kids have always loved doing it. This is from a newletter I sent out years ago, when we only had two little girls….
The winter solstice is the shortest day (and longest night) of the year. This year, it’s December 21. To commemorate it one year, we used a fun little ceremony I found online that we adapted. After dark, we turned out all the lights in the house but one and gathered at the table. We lit a candle, turned out the last light, and talked about the seasons, the sun, and how tonight was the longest night of the year. The kids blew out the candle and we said, “But the light was still there” and lit the candle again. Then we said that the days were now going to get longer and the sun was coming back, and we ran through the house turning on every light and shouting some nonsense about the sun. 🙂 It’s a fun little ritual that the girls enjoyed. Since I’m a garden nut and love my summers, it’s a nice reminder for me too that we’ll have more than 42 minutes of daylight soon enough. <G>
If you want to expand on the solstice thing with the kiddos, look up the sunset and sunrise times for the past few days and the next few days and see what the changes will be.
And with that, I’m off to go downstairs and finish the last of the millions of homemade Christmas cards with the kids! Talk about down to the wire! Tsk! 🙂