Wordless Wednesday: Jump!

Springtime on the trampoline:

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No, They're Not.

There is one thing I often get asked when me and the boys are out and about.

After they ask if they are all mine. After they comment on the fact that I don't have a daughter. After they ask if we are having any more. After they say I am brave.

"Are they always this good?!?"

Depending on my mood I answer different ways. I might just smile. Or I say "most of the time" or "only out in public" or simply "yes".
That's the easy answer.

The real answer?

No, they're not.

That's number 3 in their room. Number 4 in the house.

Their door is currently a curtain because they pretty much busted the door off the frame.

They have tempers that they haven't learned to control yet.

All of them.


There's a list of things I want. Farm-wise. Barnheart is a term I read once that perfectly describes it. For the most part I have settled into waiting, until Paul has finished school. Until the time is right.

But yesterday I asked Paul to get chicken feed and pine shavings on the way home from work. He came home with these:

Thing 1

And thing 2:
They are more of an experiment.

We don't have a pond, but have read that a wading pool can suffice.

Especially for such a small number of ducks.

Of course the boys are enthralled with the new additions.


Where in the World?

We've been sick this week so we haven't done too much....a couple half finished projects and one easy one completed.

Armed with our 3 dinosaur books/encyclopedias, a big tub of plastic dinosaurs and a few maps they went to work. Identifying each unlabeled dinosaur, looking it up in the index of their book and finding out which continent(s) it was discovered on. As you can see by the huge pile, the majority of the dinosaurs we own were discovered right here in North America.

Once they were sorted by continent we began sorting them by time period...

With most being in the Cretaceous:

And the long-necked ones in the Jurassic

We were hard pressed to find a Triassic dinosaur. Cale scoured the book until he found a meat-eating, 2-leg walking, smaller dinosaur that resembled the little green one in the picture that lived in the Triassic. He decided it was a Coelophysis.

Our half finished projects are models of carnivore/herbivore teeth and models of 4 of the different theories of extinction- and we'll get them done next week.


Dinosaurs, Assignment 2 and 3

So this isn't exactly unique to dinosaurs but the boys' second project consisted of making a time line of life- basically I just wanted them familiar with the names of the periods and some of the things that might have happened in those periods. I know I learned it in school and I remember a handful of names and somewhat of their order. Although I probably do know the whole thing a little better after helping Rylan and Cale with their charts. The information was much more relatable since the day before we watched Before the Dinosaurs: Walking with Monster's Reptile's Beginnings which took them from the Permian into the Jurassic. So as they were putting together their charts they brought up things that happened in the movie which fell into the certain periods. We also talked a little bit about other schools of thought on this topic, and how not all people believe the same thing on this particular topic.

Here's Cale's, 1st grade, less writing version

And Rylan's, 3rd grade, more writing version

Yesterday we started with geography. They each made a salt dough versions of the continents based on these Pangaea cut-outs. They had Greenland, India, N. America, S. America, Australia, Antarctica and Eurasia. Lakin made his own version....he called them bridges.

We baked them for a couple hours, then painted them.

Today we cut them out and glued them down..

Lakin's Pangaea
(not really, but all his 'bridges' were glued in one big blob...)

Cale's Triassic

Rylan's Jurassic

Cohen's Cretaceous
We also compared them to our present day map and followed how they moved through out time. They remembered the show we watched once on the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean which talked a little about the current movement of Australia. And how we heard on the news a couple weeks back that the recent Earthquake in Chile shifted the Earth on it's axis, shortened the day and raised an island up about 6 ft. Putting all that information together helped them see that the movement of the continents wasn't unique to the past, but is still happening today.


Great Cup-struction

What can you do with 400 cups?

First there was the castle tower...

Which came toppling down with the touch of Bandit's tail. They would of been upset, but the fact that Bandit took off running and was scared to death was too funny.

Then the Coliseum- or the cup-iseum as they called it.

And the Eiffel Tower- or you know, the cup-fel tower....
That one took us a couple tries. The last fall was my fault- Rylan warned me not to add another cup to the tower on the top...but I didn't listen and I was the only one who could reach. After that they told me I had to take a picture after each cup I added...

We are working on a line that can reach up to the ceiling, but we haven't perfected the structure yet. A straight line starts to lean and fall when it's about 5 feet tall. If we curve the edges it can get a few rows higher. 6 feet is our max height so far. A curvy line is on the agenda for tomorrow.

They are also pestering their dad to get a couple more bags of cups....


Dinosaurs, Assignment 1

Make a list of at least 10 dinosaurs; half herbivores and half carnivores and find out how tall they were.

Create a graph of the heights. Label both axes.

Create a key for your graph.

Answer questions.

How tall was the tallest dinosaur? Shortest?
What type of dinosaur was the tallest? Shortest?
What was the average height of the herbivores? Carnivores?
Which group was taller on average?

I was very happy with how their projects turned out, and they were too. Cale complained his way through the initial list- until I let them watch a documentary on Allosaurus, then he finished very quickly. Today with the graphing part he didn't complain a bit. And they learned so much more than just the dinosaurs heights or how to read a graph. How to read a pronunciation guide, how to spell all these dinosaur's names, how to measure out a scale for the height axis so they were equally spaced and allowed enough room for the maximum height, how to find averages, how they really can write smaller and neater than they say they can and how writing so much really isn't so bad when you have a finished product you can be proud of...