Making a dream catcher MBTP Unit 3 (9 to 11)

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We are so excited for this unit to start. I stopped at our local book store to see if they had any other books that would fit this unit. Since we are still fairly new to this place, it was only our second visit. But on our first I swore I had seen that red book and was so upset I nearly missed my chance getting it.

Luckily after asking the lady at the counter, she looked it up and they still had a copy. It was a bit pricier than i expected but supporting the local store with a local book, just seemed right. I love small book stores, and could imagine the girls growing up here and this being their favorite place. One of those stores and places where they know your name, your favorite authors and must reads.

So, we just started with Lesson 2 and are working on our dream catcher from the 9-11 Level.

The Kit is a small one,  I wish MBTP would sometimes spend a little bit more money on better kits. ( or I wish i’d take time to just research those before and order my own) both obviously has it’s benefits. With getting the KIT you get everything and hardly have to buy anything in between for the projects. Less time preparing and planning. At least with this you get a neat introduction and if they really enjoy an activity you can decide to spend more time and money on a project and do it again, or maybe in a group with friends. Great co-op idea…

Anyways, at first making the web seemed really confusing to her, but then we found this great little tutorial and she was able to make the whole web on her own. She even added the beads in the middle.  In the end I was surprised how cute it actually turned out and once we were into it, we could have made a dozen 😉

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Latest Geronimo Stilton books

Are there any Geronimo Stilton fans out there ? 

You know we are ! We still love this silly scaredy mouse and his family. We have almost every one of his adventures and the girls still love to read them. Some of his latest adventures have been more on the sillier site than educational, but you know that’s okay sometimes too. I am happy to hear my girls giggle and laugh about the stories. They are reading, having fun, and their creativity and imagination grows. I was excited to see so many new releases and added many to our list right away !

This just came out today !!

I, Geronimo Stilton, was so excited to travel on my third journey through time! Professor Paws von Volt had invented a portal to take my family and me to the past.

On this trip, we visited the Ice Age, ancient Greece, and the Renaissance. I encountered wooly mammoths and enormouse bears, wrote and starred in a play, and even helped put a bad guy in prison! But then the portal started malfunctioning — could we get back to the present day, or would we get lost in time? It was an amazing adventure!

This one released just right after Christmas !

My family and I, Geronimo Stilton, were invited to Lisbon, Portugal, to retrace the journey of the great explorer Vasco da Gama. He was the first European to reach India by sea — and was apparently an ancestor of the Stiltons! But once we got on the boat, I learned that someone was trying to sabotage the voyage. Could I figure out who?

Released today 😀

While at the beach, Geronimo Stiltonix stumbles upon a mysterious treasure map! The spacemice follow it and end up on Aquarix, a planet that’s entirely underwater. During their exploration, they face fur-eating seaweed, ferocious piranha aliens, and . . . pirate spacecats! Squeak! Can the spacemice keep the spacecats from stealing the treasure?

 

All these titles have been announced to be released in the next few months, time to save them to your lists or just go ahead and pre-order some 

It’s the start of an exciting cavemice contest: a race to Boulder Bay and back! It’s a dangerous route, but it will supply the village cheese maker with rare hot lava peppers, and there’s a big cash prize. Trap teams up with Geronimo — who has a lazy, slow, city autosaurus (the cavemice mode of transportation). Can they reach the finish line without going extinct on the way?

Fairies, dragons, wizards, and more await Geronimo in this magical adventure!

I, Geronimo Stilton, was amazed to find myself called back to the Kingdom of Fantasy for another adventure. Blossom, Queen of the Fairies, needed my help ― time itself was under threat! Something evil was making the hands of the magical Tick Tock Timepiece spin faster and faster. It was causing Blossom to age at an alarming rate . . . and if she perished, so would the entire Kingdom of Fantasy! Holey cheese! It was up to me to restore time and harmony to the land. Could I do it before the clock reached its final hour?

No further info yet, it looks fun though 😀

There was a mystery in New Mouse City’s Egyptian Mouseum! The Black Papyrus, an ancient document that reveals the secret of eternal youth, had disappeared. The mouseum’s director asked me to help him find it. Yikes — those Egyptian artifacts freak me out! Luckily, a secret agent came to our aid… but could we trust him? It was up to us to recover the precious scroll!

BONUS! After the story, read an extra Mini Mystery adventure and jokes galore!

Who is Geronimo Stiltonord?
He is a mouseking — the Geronimo Stilton of the ancient far north! He lives with his brawny and brave clan in the village of Mouseborg. From sailing frozen waters to facing fiery dragons, every day is an adventure for the micekings!

Attack of the Dragons
The micekings are in a panic. The village’s best cook is ill, and until she recovers, there’s no delicious stew to eat! Geronimo Stiltonord departs immediately in search of a cure for her. But on the way, he ends up snout-to-snout with terrifying dragons! Can he make it back with his fur intact?

Join Geronimo Stilton in all new Fabumouse adventures across time and space!

It’s time for Bart Barnacle, the prehistoric pirate who has been visiting the cavemice, to return to his island home. It’s up Geronimo Stiltonoot to accompany him on his long, treacherous journey ― during which they’ll encounter megalithic danger and hungry sea monsters. Squeak!

Join Thea Stilton and the Thea Sisters on an adventure packed with mystery and friendship!

The Thea Sisters are heading to Hollywood! A friend has invited them to the set of a film. The mice are thrilled to be around famouse and fabumouse directors and actors as they’re working. But then someone tries to sabotage the film with a mysterious theft! Can the Thea Sisters catch the thief and save the movie?

The Thea Sisters are five fun, lively students at Mouseford Academy on Whale Island, who want to be real, live journalists, just like their hero, Thea Stilton. Between classes, friendships, crushes, and some bizarre mysteries to solve, they find life to be a never-ending adventure!

The View from Saturday Level 9 to 11 Concept 1 Unit 2

We just finished the second unit of the 9-11 unit with MBTP  “The view from Saturday”. Most times I quickly research the book before we start a new unit or I just happen to know it ahead of time. There are many great sites out there that give you a good idea what the book is about.
For example https://www.commonsensemedia.org/book-reviews/the-view-from-saturday is always a great place to start, although I do not always agree with their opinion.

http://www.sparknotes.com/ is another good one but they do not have a wide range of books.

Also http://www.shmoop.com/ might be of help for quick research.

The easiest way to research a book quickly is of course to just read some reviews on Amazon.

A big goal of mine  this year is to read all the books together again or, which works better with the 9-11 level, to read them ahead of time by myself.  A great goal for working together  and also a great addition to my personal reading challenge of at least 50 books for the year.

I must say I was a little confused about the book at first but my confusion quickly turned into curiosity. What probably makes the book hard to read ,and maybe this is the reason it isn’t liked as much by some students ,is that it is written out of the perspective of different people, the actual main characters. Once you figure that out, or better your child figures that out, the story is not as hard to follow as it first seems.  I am glad I read the story ahead of time though as I now know the story plot and it is so much easier to  guide  her through the book.

The added turtle research was a lot of fun. I googled for a few extra pictures, videos and fun facts. Unfortunately our small library did not have many books about Loggerhead turtles but maybe you get lucky and find some of these.


Far, far out at sea lives one of the world’s most mysterious creatures, the loggerhead turtle. For thirty years she swims the oceans, wandering thousands of miles as she searches for food. Then, one summer night, she lands on a beach to lay her eggs — the very same beach where she herself was born. Nicola Davies’s lyrical text offers fascinating information about the journey of the tiny, endangered loggerhead, while charming paintings by Jane Chapman vividly illustrate one turtle’s odyssey.

If you are really looking for more info about sea turtles, this will be a great addition. I know Moving beyond the page will cover ocean life etc a bit more later on, but I am not sure how much it will cover about turtles.

This series is also wonderful for younger kids, but provides quick info even for the older ones that don’t want to read 100 pages 😉

 

Of course the turtles are just a side study in this unit, but it is a fun one and the wonderful thing with Moving beyond the page is that you can stop and hang out at this subject for a bit, if your kids are super interested in it.

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Another completely different subject the book mentions is Calligraphy. One of the main characters learns how to write and use a calligraphy ink pen and naturally one of the activities was to try out the same. Now there are tons of different calligraphy sets out there from cheap to expensive. I did some  calligraphy as a child myself, i remember going to the local office/ art store and they had all the calligraphy nibs in a large set up and you could buy each one individually. So fun. They are a little harder to come by now but I did get lucky at our local MICHAELS and we purchased this Calligraphy
set. At home she could not wait to try it out. Of course I really should have bought some proper paper. I forgot how messy it can be and how much ink can leak through the other pages in a book or notepad. Oh well. It was fun and got me inspired to try it out as well again.

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Overall this unit was once again tons of fun. Our final project ” the tea party ” has not been able to take place yet, since we really wanted to bake some lovely scones to go along with our tea and our oven has been broken for nearly two weeks now.. so it will have to wait.

Anyways, hope this review of the unit has been of help.

Happy homeschooling !

 

 

Magical stories for your “tween”

Lately my 9 year old has been loving all kinds of magic books. Ever since Harry Potter came into her life she has been hooked. I can’t forget to mention Narnia here too of course, such an amazing series all on it’s own. But those are some of the big book series, the ones many people know by now. If you have a little book worm like mine at home you might be looking for more. Luckily there are so many other great stories out there.

Here are some of our latest favorites !!

Just recently Amazon prime added a wonderful, new show to their streaming and we have absolutely fallen in love with it.

When Kelly and her two best friends stumble upon a mysterious cookbook, they discover the book’s recipes are far from ordinary-they’re magical. Attempting to use the recipes to release Kelly’s grandmother from a powerful curse, they uncover more clues surrounding Grandma’s mystery and learn each recipe comes with a hefty price. Bigger secrets are about to be unearthed when you Just Add Magic!

It tells a wonderful story of the friendship of three girls that are on the journey to solve the mystery of a magical cookbook and help Kelly’s grandmother that seems to be cursed by a magical spell.

As it is incredibly hard to find inspirational TV shows for older girls these days, especially non cartoon and non Disney , this is a wonderful refreshing show. As we watched the first few episodes I knew this show was a winner and our whole family has been glued to them ever since. We have almost watched all of them and hope they will add a second season very soon !

If you can’t wait for season 2, the book might give you more hints on the evolving story.

 

The Bliss Trilogy

Rosemary Bliss’s family has a secret. It’s the Bliss Cookery Booke—an ancient, leather-bound volume of enchanted recipes like Singing Gingersnaps.

Rose and her siblings are supposed to keep the Cookery Booke locked away while their parents are out of town, but then a mysterious stranger shows up. “Aunt” Lily rides a motorcycle and also whips up exotic (but delicious) dishes for dinner. Soon boring, non-magical recipes feel like life before Aunt Lily—a lot less fun.

So Rose and her siblings experiment with just a couple of recipes from the forbidden Cookery Booke. A few Love Muffins and Cookies of Truth couldn’t cause too much trouble . . . could they?

Kathryn Littlewood’s culinary caper blends rich emotional flavor with truly enchanting wit, yielding one heaping portion of hilarious family adventure.

Harry Potter ( picture book edition ) 

I don’t think I need to add the story line here 😉 Harry Potter is simply a must read in your lifetime. If you love magic or not. The new picture book addition is simply a dream come true !!

Half Magic by Edward Eager

It all begins with a strange coin on a sun-warmed sidewalk.
Jane finds the coin, and becasue she and her sblings are having the worst, most dreadfully boring summer ever, she idly wishes something exciting would happen.
And something does: Her wish is granted.
Or not quite. Only half of her wish comes true.
It turns out the coin grants wishes—but only by half, so that you must wish for twice as much as you want.
Wishing for two times some things is a cinch, but other doubled wishes only cause twice as much trouble. What is half of twice a talking cat? Or to be half-again twice not-here? And how do you double your most heartfelt wish, the one you care about so much it has to be perfect?

The Miri and Molly Series

Miri is the non-twin child in a family with two sets of them–older brothers and younger sisters. The family has just moved to an old farmhouse in a new town, where the only good thing seems to be Miri’s ten-sided attic bedroom. But when Miri gets sent to her room after accidentally bashing her big brother on the head with a shovel, she finds herself in the same room . . . only not quite.

Without meaning to, she has found a way to travel back in time to 1935 where she discovers Molly, a girl her own age very much in need of a loving family. A highly satisfying classic-in-the-making full of spine-tingling moments, this is a delightful time-travel novel for the whole family.

The Whizz Pop Chocolate Shop by Kate Saunders

Lily and Oz Spoffard have just inherited a magical house with a mysterious boarded-up chocolate shop on the ground floor. The twins’ great-great-uncles were famous chocolatiers, and their chocolate was ANYTHING but ordinary. In fact, it had magical properties.

Now an evil gang is after the secret recipe, and it’s up to Lily and Oz to stop them. The fate of their family, and the world, depends on it.

Bella Donna by Ruth Symes

Ever since she was a baby, Bella Donna has suspected she has magical powers, and she wants nothing more than to be a witch. Bella lives in an orphanage, waiting for her “Forever Family,” until one day she meets Lilith Sorciere and agrees to move in with Lilith and her niece Verity. Bella tries keeping her witchy tendencies a secret from her new foster family, and she stays on her best behavior—but when she comes home early one day from school, she stumbles upon something very surprising! Could Coven Road really be a road for witches?

This first installment of the sweet, spooky Bella Donna series will captivate young magic-loving readers. Bella Donna: Coven Road is an engaging and entertaining read with a subtle message to be yourself. Marion Lindsay’s adorably simple spot illustrations bring even more magic to author Ruth Symes’s delightful tale. Fall in love with Bella Donna and her road to witchdom! And be prepared for her next big adventure!

A snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd


Midnight Gulch used to be a magical place, a town where people could sing up thunderstorms and dance up sunflowers. But that was long ago, before a curse drove the magic away. Twelve-year-old Felicity knows all about things like that; her nomadic mother is cursed with a wandering heart.

But when she arrives in Midnight Gulch, Felicity thinks her luck’s about to change. A “word collector,” Felicity sees words everywhere—shining above strangers, tucked into church eves, and tangled up her dog’s floppy ears—but Midnight Gulch is the first place she’s ever seen the word “home.” And then there’s Jonah, a mysterious, spiky-haired do-gooder who shimmers with words Felicity’s never seen before, words that make Felicity’s heart beat a little faster.

Felicity wants to stay in Midnight Gulch more than anything, but first, she’ll need to figure out how to bring back the magic, breaking the spell that’s been cast over the town . . . and her mother’s broken heart.

 

9 to 11 Moving beyond the page addtional resources

These cards are a  wonderful addition for the units of 9 to 11 for Moving beyond the page.

These are cute cards with great info about figurative language which comes up quite often throughout MBTP 9-111. It was very helpful for the Poems unit, view from Saturday and as I am getting a quick look for the Tall Tales study ahead, it will be of use for it as well.

I printed these out black and white, let her color them and then laminated them. They turned out to be wonderful as bookmarks which my daughters uses very frequently. Download for free here at teachespayteachers.

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https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Figurative-Language-Anchor-Chart-Illustrated-Word-Wall-Cards-1697435

 

 

 

Personal goals, a journal and (half) a book review

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A few weeks ago I was deciding on my new planner for the year. A homeschool planner is important for me and I just can’t deal with the traditional ones. After doing some research I really liked this option, not just for homeschooling but also for my personal agenda.

After back and forth questioning, I finally ordered this one and it turns out to be a great buy. The cover makes me want to pick it up every day, it’s what I need to hear right now facing so many new challenges in our new place. My new pens are also a nice addition for color coding everyone’s schedule. I never thought planning would add so much to my daily happiness, but actually making time for all of these things, like planning and more reading, has made me happier. I don’t question myself constantly what I would cook, or what we do each day. I so often thought I would be more of a free-floater but I guess I am more of a planner than I’d like to admit it.  And that’s totally okay.

The book has a great room for personal goals, which was one of the big selling features. Personal goal setting isn’t for everyone ( more and more businesses ask their employees to set personal goals, and I am not sure forcing the issues helps that many people , but that’s another blog post) but to me in my personal life it helps me deal with all the expecatations I create from myself. The book lets you set your priorities, daily goals, monthly goals. It has an overview for the month and a daily planner option as well. I use the daily stuff mainly for our homeschooling ( short lesson plan check),  cooking list and addition chores, errands, apointments etc.  Im only on week three but so far I am pleased with myself and the journal.

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Together with the journal I also ordered myself another little treat, the newest book by Gretchen Rubin  Better Than Before . I read both her other happiness books Happier at Home,   The Happiness Project and really enjoyed them so much that I was excited the moment she announced the new book. It talks about ” habits” and it really adds to my journey of Growth for this year. I never would have thought I would enjoy reading about Psychology  , the subject ” happiness”, how people think, how the function, and what makes you happy. I guess in that way I am much of a questioner looking for more and more answers about myself. I must say that it not only helps me on my personal journey though, but it also helps me understand the people around me, my children and my husband. I just started the book a few days ago, because I needed to finish the third book from the outlander series before :). ( I have the next books waiting as well, but I thought this book was a great in between read ) . It turns out to be a fantastic , inspiring read so far and it has really made me question my daily habits, how I could improve my daily accomplishments, not feeling so overwhelmed overall.

Have you set personal goals for this year ? Are you a planner or a free floater ? Do you think working on habits can overall help you during your day or a better, happier you for the new year ?

Book review REDWOODS and the Tree Lady

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Last week I grabbed these books at the library to read with the girls at home. Since the MBTP 6-8 Concept 1 deals with a lot of plant types, plant cycyles and also being mindful of our nature in general ( Giving tree )  these seemed a great fit.  Now that we live in Oregon I am trying to gather more and more information about all the amazing places that are just so different that anywhere else we have lived before.

Every so often you just make this awesome catch of books at the library, where you have a few books that you would just love to keep or just go ahead and buy them one way or another. These were just like that…

The tree lady is the story of Kate Sessions. A wonderful woman, who was one of the first women to go to college in California to study science. She loved trees and nature more than anything and made it her life work to turn San Diego into a little oasis.

It is in Balboa Park that the legacy of Kate Sessions is most obvious. She leased land in what was then called “City Park” in 1892 for a nursery. For this privilege, she was to plant one hundred trees a year in the park and furnish three hundred more for planting throughout the city. In 1902 she was instrumental in the formation of the park Improvement Committee with her friends George Marston and Mary B. Coulston. Their work resulted in assuring the park’s place in the life of the community.Kate Sessions died March 24, 1940. She has come to be called the “Mother of Balboa Park” and a bronze statue of her was erected there in 1998.

The book is beautifully illustrated  and it’s just one of those books you wish you would have read before or even better, you end up longing for actually going back in time and meeting this amazing lady. It is a beautifully written book about a lovely person who clearly deserves to be recognized for her amazing work and dedication. It is incredibly inspiring, especially for young girls.

 

And then there was the REDWOODS book.

A book that shows a little boy walking and day dreaming with his book in his hands, the book you are holding, the book about the REDWOODS. The book is once again beautifully illustrated ,the charming little pictures of the animals and especially the little cute squirrel my daughter had discovered after a few pages are just adorable.  It even shows the magnificent DRIVE TRHOUGH REDWOOD which made it so much clearer how big some of these trees really are. We loved how it referred back to the roman times to explain again how old some of these trees really are. The details and information given was more than I really expected from a picture book, and I think it will take a few more times to fully understand each bit of it. The whole ecosystem of the redwoods is simply amazing and it is so important we learn more about it.  I am beyond excited about the summer, it will be an unforgettable little trip to go there and see these giants for real !

This is the place we have picked out for on of our first adventures here.

https://www.treesofmystery.net/

If your hungry for more…

More about the REDWOODS

And a wonderful video that shows almost exactly what is described in parts of the book.How the scientists literally have to climb up these giants to confirm or do any research at all. My daughter thought it was funny that a scientist would have to learn how to climb trees in the first place to even do the research.. who would have thought that can be important 😉 Maybe another homeschooling benefit hidden here ?! 😉

Anyways hope you enjoyed today’s journey through the trees !

Community | Concept 1 | MBTP 6-8

Concept 1 from 6-8 MBTP has been community. All in all this topic was a little boring because I thought we have covered it so much already in the past, but given the recent move again it was actually quite useful.

Due to the weather we did not venture out through the community as much as I hoped but we have met and discovered some wonderful parts of our community nevertheless. It was fun looking up the Mayor of our town, and for whatever reason my little one thought it was fun to incorporate his name into their PLAYMOBIL adventures as the evil mayor.. somewhat like in the LEGO movie, hilarious.

And given this big change of community (from big city to little, country town) this unit probably helped cope with alot of the changes. The map in one of the first units was actually one of her favorite things. ( and once again it was once I was ready to skip. ) She loved making this map, and added so many things throughout the weeks to it, that it even ended up as a little playworld for lego people in her room. Win win.

The map didn’t have to be realistic to your own hometown, which made this a lot easier. The project was great and fun and really let our her creativity. Once she started she wanted to add so many more places.

 

The family flag was also a fun little project on the side.

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Venturing out and learning about our community was very hands-on in between lessons 🙂

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Here are some parts of one of her final projects during this Concept.

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We also dived deep into animal studies with this concept which was a delight for my youngest. She is still dreaming of becoming a Vet and even though she knew a lot of the information given already I felt it was much needed background and cleared up a lot of little questions she had. These were just some of our library books used for this Unit. I really enoyed Raptor Rescue!: An Eagle Flies Free
and the whole series of YOU WOULD NOT WANT TO is simply incredibly funny !! Rain Forests (Magic Tree House Research Guide)
was also a good addition for our montly reading.

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Today we wrapped up the lesson about this wonderful book .

One that seems to bring just a few tears to our eyes each and every time. I swear the first time I read it, I could not stop crying. My 6 year old is normally not my sensitive one but even she had tears in her eyes. Oh boy, these are the moments when homeschooling is worth every penny. The talks we have during these moments are really just priceless.

We also watched a few more videos on how we depend on nature and what exact products come from nature.

THE BOOKS ARE DUE ! ( printable)

The Library is big in our family. It’s like our second home and has turned out to be a great start to meet the community every time we have moved.

But it is so incredibly hard to keep track of our books some days 😉

I am sure you have all been there. At our current library there is no limit of books that you can check out, and my kids are quick to pick up on that and take advantage of it. Unfortunately there are due dates.  I am pretty strict with our library books and we have a certain place where we keep them, and that alone makes things a bit easier at time. But it is still chaos when books are due 😉

So I came up with a little fun list/ printable (remember my last post, yeap, I am big on lists). I will try to print it out every week, hang it on the pin board and the kids can easily add requests on the paper ( interests each week) so we can remember to look certain books up, and I can add on the list which books are immediately due or have been requested to go back to the library. This will hopefully help them to set their own priorities to read certain books first and finish  other books in due time. They can also add which books they have already finished, so you can just grab them, stuff them in the book back and take them back to the library before those hefty fines come in ! If you are keeping a reading log for your kids, it might also help to keep track of all books checked out.  Fee free to save the image below to print it out as well 🙂 Here is to a new ,organized year !

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