Teaching Kids

Pinterest and Dollartree had a baby ( Planets)

By on August 27, 2015

Not long ago my mom told me that her favorite part of teaching was the planning which I totally didn’t buy because I’ve seen her in the classroom and she’s a great mix of entertainment/sarcasm/love….but as I’ve jumped into the deep end of homeschool this year I’ve realize that I also find great calm and love in all things planning. That said, I’ve decided I better keep a log for myself of my weekly plans so that if I do this again for Tabitha and/or Justice I will remember what worked well and what didn’t….

So, if you don’t mind, I’m going to do it here-besides, sharing is caring and if this means someone else can benefit from our weekly themes and/or my weekly themes remind you of something awesome( read:easy) that I can do with my kids then: Hazzah!
Week One: Planets
Discuss: Genesis One and what “the heavens” means…
The Planets in our solar system
The Sun
1. Moon Search
A giant bin of “moon sand” with hidden marbles (aka planets) and erasers shaped like little earths and stars. Kids had to find the hidden themed items in the sand.
              -Ransom had to sort them and count each category.
              – Tabitha had to make a huge mess with the sand.
Ingredients needed:
 2 bins ( my kids are terrible at sharing)
 moon sand ( recipes abound on the internet but we were thankfully given moon sand as a gift. score)
marbles, erasers found at Dollartree.
2. Make the Constellations.
Printed out these awesome printable constellations  and discussed what a constellation was and some of the stories behind them ( if they seemed suitable for a 5 year old…). Then Ransom made punched holes in the constellation stars. After we were done we went into a dark room and using a flash light shone the constellations on the wall! Pretty fun!
                -Ransom worked on some classic eye/hand coordination with this one. He loved it.
                -Tabitha was busy using a Bingo marker   to mark dots on this awesome printable of “S is for Spaceship”   Also practicing eye-hand coordination and working on our S recognition.
Ingredients needed:
 -Printer to print out both the constellations and the S worksheet.
-Styrofoam square ( purchased at Dollartree) to place the constellation cards on so that the paper wouldn’t rip when he punched holes.
-Large crochet needle for punching ( I had this already)
-Bingo marker ( Dollartree has these too! )
3. Our Planets.
On the floor Ransom and I used cutouts of the different planets which I had numbered and he put them in order away from the sun.
               -Ransom and I discussed the names of the planets over and over again. How big and how small they were and what being “far from the sun” meant for each planet. ( COLD and HOT)
              -Tabitha ran around moving the planets and causing trouble.
Ingredients needed:
Print off of the planets, piece of yellow paper cut in a circle for the sun
4. “E” is for Earth
With a blow up Earth beach ball we took turns picking a letter then when we caught the ball we had to say a word that started with that letter. Good for practicing sounding out and letter sounds
                 -Ransom loved this game and was definitely annoyed/confused at all the similar sounding letters that he came across usually J/G and K/C words…but we would talk about each one.
                 – Tabitha loved throwing the ball and chasing it and saying random words loudly.
Ingredients needed:
Blow up Earth beach ball ( found at Dollartree)
5. Creating planets
Discussing yet again how creative and wonderful God is for creating the Heavens. Give kids little paper plates to create their own planets with art supplies
Little paper plates ( go with the cheap ones the less glossy the easier for your art supplies!)
paints ( we did paint because we rarely do paint and so its super special to my kids)
6. Count the Stars
I gave Ransom about 8 of these black cards and a sheet of star stickers in the corner of each black card ( a piece of black construction paper cut in half hamburger style)  was a number written in chalk. He had to stick the number of stars corresponding to the number on the black “sky”.   The next day I had erased the number and he had to count how many stars he had put in each sky and write the number at the bottom.
                 -Ransom liked this game but didn’t like doing the “big” numbers ( anything two digit) because it seemed like SO many. I had to encourage him that he could do it.
                -Tabitha played stickers and paper while Ransom did this activity
Black construction paper
white chalk
star stickers.
Books my kids loved: 
Other important resources: 
And special thanks to this link: Spell Out Loud  for having what I needed to get started on many of these activities.