Sunday, March 9, 2014

Tent Town (Homeschool Edition)

Today I put on a Reading Tent Town for the homeschool group we're a part of.  It was done at a great park with a nice big green lawn.  Despite the wind's best efforts, no tents blew away and we had fun.

We had 11 kids today and 5 story tents.  The oldest 4 kids acted as story-readers.  They did a great job and were pretty proud of themselves.  I love to see the older kids have opportunities to be responsible and help out the younger ones.  To me, homeschooling isn't just about learning things like history facts and algebra; it's about learning to be a responsible, compassionate, competent adult!

The story we started with all together was The Rain Came Down by David Shannon.  I thought it was pretty appropriate, considering that rain is on everyone's minds lately with the drought here in California.

For our craft, they were each given a plain white paper to draw a picture on with crayon.  Then they were given a piece of tracing paper to draw blue rain drops on with marker.  The two papers were then taped together at the top so you can flip it down to show the rain covering your scene, then flip it up when the rain stops.

The other stories that were read in the story tents:
Clifford books, Tikki Tikki Tembo by Arlene Mosel, The Mixed-up Alphabet by Steve Metzger, The Old Red Rocking Chair by Phyllis Root, and Eric Carle's Mister Seahorse

This time I did the tent signs and cards a little different.  I didn't work very hard to get everyone's story titles beforehand.  Also, to be frank, I don't know all of the families well personally so didn't know if I could count on them to show up and read what they said they would.

So instead of making the pictures on the signs and the cards coordinate with the stories, I gathered all the self-inking stamps I owned and made the sign pictures match the stamps.  Each story reader then stamped each kids' blank card with the stamp that matched their sign.  It wasn't as cute and interesting as the way we've done it in the past, but it worked out really well! 

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