Monthly Archives: November 2011

Montessori Monday–Thanksgiving Activities

Button Turkey

I regained a lot of my energy from my sinus surgery over the weekend, so I was able to set up some activities for Dora for this week. I brought out the button turkey that I made for Dora last year. This activity was really too easy for her, but she has been playing with the turkey as a toy and “fluffing” it’s feathers. She has been a bit turkey obsessed ever since we bought her this Beanie Baby Turkey.

Is that the cutest turkey that you ever saw or what? Who would have ever guessed that I would ever use the words “cute” and “turkey” in the same sentence?!?! Anyway, this turkey has currently replaced all other stuffed animals in regards to Dora’s affection. She falls asleep with it every night, carries it when we go out, and gives it hugs and kisses galore. It kind of reminds me of the baby golden goose in Puss ‘in Boots, so cute, but so wrong at the same time! Based on her obsession, I don’t know if we should serve turkey or not for Thanksgiving. She is so excited about “Turkey Day”, but I am beginning to think that she might not be so excited about having a dead turkey on our table (I’m a wanna-be vegetarian, so find turkey carcasses to be disgusting anyway). 

November Sensory TubI set up a sensory tub for Dora for November, but I am feeling that this will be the last one I do for her. I’m a bit tired of the mess and she is only interested in sensory tubs if they are messy. This one used artificial leaves and flowers for the “base” and she has had zero interest in them. I also added some artificial acorns, as there are not many acorns around where we live. I then added some toy Thanksgiving figurines that I found at an unknown store, some unknown time ago, and had been saving for an unknown period of time for this November. Sigh, yes, the memory started to go the day I turned 40 and it didn’t leave any forwarding instructions…

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Disclosure: The turkey Beanie Baby links in this post are affiliate links. I will make a small amount if you click on them and make a purchase. All opinions expressed, however, are 100% my own.

Labels: Montessori, Preschool
Posted by Maureen Sklaroff

Salad Spinner Art

Salad Spinner Art 4

Once again, I have been a bad blogger this week. 2011 has been a bad year for me, health-wise. My tooth crown had to be redone, so I spent two mornings at the dentist. Then on Wednesday, I had sinus surgery and the recovery has been a bit draining. I can, however, now breathe freely through my right nostril. I only had one side operated on as that was the only side with documented structural issues. Twenty years ago, I had major sinus surgery and there is a lot of scar tissue left from that. From what I gather, that surgery was done during the “dark ages” of sinus surgery, so my doctor at the time, wouldn’t have been able to reach as many places, done as good of a job, and so forth. Anyway, the scar tissue on this side had cilia that were going the wrong way, so my healthy cilia would push bacteria in one direction and my scarred cilia would push it right back. The end result being, the bacteria could never escape my right sinuses and I had chronic sinus infections.

Salad Spinner Art 5

Anyway, Gohan did what bookwork he could. We are still struggling with finding the correct language arts curriculum. Finding curriculum geared towards teenagers, who are a couple of years behind in reading and several years behind in spelling, is hard. A lot of the curriculum is either too difficult or too childish. In addition, the curriculum that I have found that is aimed at dyslexics in his age bracket tends to be too remedial.

Salad Spinner Art 2

Keeping Dora occupied, however, has been a challenge. I am not supposed to be carrying her or bending my head down. So we saw Puss in Boots twice last week, went to the park and actually met and befriended another homeschool family with a 4 1/2 year old girl that Dora got along with very well, and did a lot of crafts. I couldn’t do cooking or crafts that required a lot of me, physically, so I really had to reach into the furthest recesses of my memory (let me tell you, those recesses run deep!) to come up with crafts that would keep her occupied, not overly strain me, and did not require materials that we did not have on hand.

Salad Spinner Art 1

Our most successful endeavor ended up being salad spinner art. We first started with a store-bought art spinner, but were a bit disappointed with how awkward it was to manipulate. Then Gohan wanted to do the craft also, so I suddenly remembered that I had a long time ago read about someone using a salad spinner to create art. I don’t feel that I came up with the best technique yet, but certainly the salad spinner art came out just as nice as the art spinner. We ran out of art-spinner paint, so used tempera paints for the rest of the prints. We simply put the square of paper in the salad spinner, put some paint globs on the paper, put the lid on the spinner, and spun. We found that it was best to “anchor” each piece of paper by making sure one dot of paint was on each corner of the paper. We also found that if we spun our salad spinner too fast, the paper would fly up on the side of the spinner and ruin the print. Overall, I am hoping to fine tune this project, because I believe it has some great potential.

Salad Spinner Art 3

Labels: Arts and Crafts, High School, This and That, Wrapping Up Our Week
Posted by Maureen Sklaroff