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Old 04-28-2007, 04:23 AM   #16
slingmamaof4
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

Quote:
Originally Posted by illinoismommy
these are really good, along the lines of leaving books around, does anyone have one of those bookshelves that "display" the books... I forget what they are called, but I have been tempted to get one. Any clever ideas about a make-at-home one would be cool too
I don't know what they are called either. They hold a lot less books than a normal bookshelf, but I had one growing up. I would like one for my kids bedroom or playroom.

ETA: These types of book shelves are much easier for little ones to put books back on. I used to fix our normal bookshelf everyday because the kids would take off tons of books and not be able to put them back on neatly. Now I just tidy it every now and then.
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Old 04-28-2007, 05:49 AM   #17
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

Here's one most moms find new-

tape. Colored electrical tape, double sided tape, masking tape, etc. My son has always had a fascination with tape and how it worked and what he could make or build using tape. Pretty inexpensive thing that keeps him busy for hours. And post it notes. They have always loved them since they were little. Cheap learning toy if you ask me!

I got a big smile on my face about watering the "weeds". When you see a dandylion through a child's eyes, it is never a weed again. Okay, at least to me. They love when they go to seed too.

This is a great thread. Including my kids has enabled me to have the most worthwhile conversations with them. By being with them so much, I am able to be available for the questions that just "pop" into their heads at any given time. You know how kids are........they will be processing something still from two weeks ago and just ask a question out of the blue.

I love learning through the eyes of my children.

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Old 04-28-2007, 08:16 AM   #18
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

Quote:
Originally Posted by slingmamaof3
Quote:
Originally Posted by illinoismommy
these are really good, along the lines of leaving books around, does anyone have one of those bookshelves that "display" the books... I forget what they are called, but I have been tempted to get one. Any clever ideas about a make-at-home one would be cool too
I don't know what they are called either. They hold a lot less books than a normal bookshelf, but I had one growing up. I would like one for my kids bedroom or playroom.

ETA: These types of book shelves are much easier for little ones to put books back on. I used to fix our normal bookshelf everyday because the kids would take off tons of books and not be able to put them back on neatly. Now I just tidy it every now and then.
what type? The kind I am talking about?
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Old 04-28-2007, 02:19 PM   #19
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

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Old 04-30-2007, 07:52 AM   #20
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

Quote:
Originally Posted by illinoismommy
Quote:
Originally Posted by slingmamaof3
Quote:
Originally Posted by illinoismommy
these are really good, along the lines of leaving books around, does anyone have one of those bookshelves that "display" the books... I forget what they are called, but I have been tempted to get one. Any clever ideas about a make-at-home one would be cool too
I don't know what they are called either. They hold a lot less books than a normal bookshelf, but I had one growing up. I would like one for my kids bedroom or playroom.

ETA: These types of book shelves are much easier for little ones to put books back on. I used to fix our normal bookshelf everyday because the kids would take off tons of books and not be able to put them back on neatly. Now I just tidy it every now and then.
what type? The kind I am talking about?
The kind you are talking about are easier for kids to put books back on if you are talking about the same kind of which I am thinking. But I think they hold less books generally speaking.

This is the kind of bookcases I am talking about:
http://www.bizchair.com/0538jc-jon.html

http://www.poshtots.com/catalog/213/...uct_detail.asp

http://www.bizchair.com/cf905-052-chf.html

http://www.bizchair.com/3506jcww004-jon.html

Well, there are a variety of them...but these are what I am talking about.
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Old 04-30-2007, 09:16 AM   #21
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

yeah those, I want *drooool*

I don't know if I'll ever justify the cost though.....
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Old 04-30-2007, 11:39 AM   #22
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

just wanted to add.....

We have a huge tablet of newsprint that we leave out near my sewing area/dh's desk area with a box of colored pencils and crayons. Many times we will get down and color with them. It's nice because if we are doing something on the computer or if I'm "crafting", they are right there with us and we don't have to make trips up and down the steps to check on them.

Play-doh (I think that was mentioned before)

Barbara Curtis has an awesome idea in "Mommy Manual" that I have been wanting to create/update for a year now, and haven't done it yet ....an "art gallery". A collection of famous pieces of art, displayed on their level, that rotates out every week or so. You can talk about who painted it, what they used to make it (also photos of sculptures or other works of art). I went to the poster website (what is it? allposters.com?) and saved a bunch of thumbnails to print out (<<<<ahem>>>>>it's only illegal if I sell them, right? ) and I'm going to make some little cardboard frames to slide the pictures in, and hang them in a little "gallery" at the foot of the stairs. <<<<sigh.>>>>add this to my list of "cool things to do for the kids before they graduate"

The kids love to "wash dishes". I let them pull chairs up to the kitchen sink, put a little water in each sink with some mild (method) detergent, and put all kinds of plastic/non-breakable items in there. Sometimes even the silverware/serving utensils from dinner. They will play like that for a loooooong time....pouring, wiping, squeezing water out of the rag, etc. I have to watch though for dd to run the water and she likes to pour the water *towards* her which is actually into the floor.

We sing/say nursery rhymes *a lot*. My mom got us started on this. She used to teach (assist actually) kindergarten and was amazed at how many children had never even *heard* some of the more popular nursery rhymes or fingerplays. She has a video and a CD and we have some nursery rhyme books. DD calls them "nurshy shrimes"

We do little silly songs often....I'll make up a random song about what we're doing, or sing a familiar song with each word having the same beginning letter (bary bad a bittle bamb....bittle bamb...) just to be silly, and I"ve noticed that ds will do that sometimes on his own. It's cute to watch him think through how to make each word start with the same letter.

I drive dh crazy with how much I talk, but I talk to the kids about *everything*. What I see as we drive down the road...the sounds we hear...how I'm feeling...what daddy is doing (school/homework/riding his bike/etc.), what grandma and pappaw are doing...what we're going to do tonight, tomorrow, stories about when they were babies. I also try to listen and respond in some way to everything they say or ask. I've done this since they were born....even when it was just me and newborn ds in the car, I would be chatting away about something (not incessantly, okay? but casually, like if there were another adult in the passenger seat, kwim?) I think this has helped both of them develop strong language skills and hopefully some strong social and critical thinking skills.

A few days ago dd and I were shopping at the Habitat Homestore and she found a little Mother Goose book and wanted to sit at all the old school desks and read it. SO CUTE!! I wish I had had my camera! It was just .25, so I had her take it to the counter and say "I'd like to buy this please" (she said "Buy dis pweez") I gave her the quarter and had her hand it to the lady, and then take the receipt and when the lady said "thank you" dd said "wekkum" and I told her to say "thank *you*" and she did. It seems easier for me to do "learning moments" when I'm just with one child. I just focus better that way and I'm not worried about what the other one is doing or getting into.

I have tried to be more conscious lately of what/how I can teach them at any given moment, depending on what they are doing/what they are interested in. I think ds has an interest in learning to make letters, so I might start that with him soon, as well as some basic phonics sounds.
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Old 04-30-2007, 11:51 AM   #23
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

Those shelves....recently I saw a blog with pics of somebody's homeschool room....she had screwed rain gutters (horizontally) to the studs in the walls to make shelves. She had them all around the room. It looked really, really good and she was able to display many books. I don't know how sturdy gutters are; I was afraid they would be too flimsy especially for little boys to shelve their books daily but she'd had them awhile and they looked to be in very good shape
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Old 04-30-2007, 11:57 AM   #24
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

I just googled raingutter bookshelves and found lots of blogs and pics, here's one:

http://www.carriebartkowiak.com/2007...r-bookshelves/
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Old 04-30-2007, 11:59 AM   #25
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

Quote:
Originally Posted by illinoismommy
yeah those, I want *drooool*

I don't know if I'll ever justify the cost though.....
My parents got ours from a yard sale when I was little! Loved that bookcase! Ours was big and did hold a fair number of books.
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Old 04-30-2007, 12:03 PM   #26
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

Quote:
Originally Posted by BluegrassMama
I just googled raingutter bookshelves and found lots of blogs and pics, here's one:

http://www.carriebartkowiak.com/2007...r-bookshelves/
oooo...those look very cool!
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Old 04-30-2007, 01:40 PM   #27
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .


great thread!
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Old 04-30-2007, 01:56 PM   #28
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

Just want to say I am loving all these ideas! We have no idea yet how we're going to school Matthew (or not), but these are good regardless. I love the fact that you mamas pay so much attention to your kids -- talking with them, including them in your daily activities, etc. This is the kind of mother I want to be, and these learning ideas sound like the kind of home I want to create.

Keep 'em coming!
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Old 04-30-2007, 02:58 PM   #29
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

I've seen those bookshelves out in front of stores for free. Maybe you could ask around at thrift stores. We put books in baskets.
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Old 04-30-2007, 03:02 PM   #30
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Default Re: Ideas for giving them a learning rich environment.. . . .

My son is very young, but here is what we do (by the way, I am a "future" homeschooler because we don't have to declare until right before he turns six, but we are definitely homeschooling our 3 kids - I'm pregnant with twins)

1. We have a "child friendly" home that invites exploration. No real "off limits" areas, lots of books, puzzles, and games as child level.

2. Encourage our son to be an active part of our day. He helps to clean up his messes, brush his teeth, bathe, etc. He is "learning" how to be an adult in our society.

3. Words, words, words - we discuss everything. We talk about the weather, the trees, clothing.

4. Books, books, and more books - We have a library of over 100 children's books so far - and I can't stop buying! We have books for almost every age and stage.
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