School: First Day of Winter

Even though the first day of winter was on a Sunday, and technically, we had suspended school for the Christmas holiday the previous Friday, we had a special school day on December 21.  Turkey and Bunny loved this, because Daddy got to come to school, which is something they are always asking for.  We had a special craft activity, a special story, and a movie to watch.

Our craft project for the day was Q-tip snowflakes.  They’re really beautiful, and easy for children to do on their own, because the snowflakes can be as simple or as complex as you want.  There’s a really cool gallery with pictures of actual snowflakes taken with a photo-microscope.  It’s totally worth checking out, and a great reminder of God’s attention to detail.

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This craft was really fun, although I’m really glad I made a sample beforehand, to work out most of the kinks (who knew there was a correct side of the wax paper to use?).  There were still a few minor issues with the snowflakes coming apart when peeling them off the wax paper the second time around, but not as bad as my first two, and a little hot glue fixed them up just fine.

Daddy got to be the narrator for our winter story–Snow, by Roy McKie and P.D. Eastman.  The timing was perfect on this one, because Bunny had received this book as a Christmas present the Friday before (thanks, Uncle Ken!), so we got to read her copy, instead of looking for one at the library.  Turkey and Bunny loved it, and have been asking to read it constantly, as well as planning all the things they would like to do in the snow that they learned about in the book–it would have to snow here first, but that’s besides the point.  They can dream, right?

Finally, we watched our second viewing of the Nutcracker–the San Francisco Ballet production.  I had previewed the second half of this version of the classic ballet a few days prior, and because I was so impressed with it, decided it would make a nice addition to our winter lessons, especially with how beautiful the “Waltz of the Snowflakes” was.  Turkey and Bunny had already seen the Mikhail Baryshnikov production the previous week, in addition to reading the storybook, so they were familiar with the story. They both seemed to prefer the San Francisco Ballet production, in part due to the fact that Baryshnikov leaves out the Sugar Plum Fairy, while the San Francisco Ballet gives her her due.  Regardless, they both sat transfixed through the entire performance a second time, which I find impressive given their ages, and the fact that, as much as even I love the Nutcracker, the music is so soothing, it makes even me want to drift off to sleep!

We have really enjoyed our special change of the season activities for both Fall and Winter–now I just have to come up with something spectacular for spring!  I’m thinking something involving coffee filters, food coloring and pipe cleaners, but I haven’t decided for sure yet.  Stay tuned!

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