2016 Aquarium Science Classes

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This is our fourth year attending science classes at Ripley’s Aquarium in Gatlinburg. It’s a bit shocking for me to write that, but it’s true. Four years already? At first, it was only my son and I going there. My mom was living with us at the time and she kept my daughter, age three at the time.

Boy and girl at Ripley's Aquarium

Before the class, they look at the fish.

The following year, they each attended their own class, but soon the Preschool class was canceled and my daughter joined my son in the K-2 class. Last year, they were perfectly matched to the K-2 class, as my son was in second grade and my daughter in Kindergarten. Continue reading »

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Science4us.com Review

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Here we are again, talking about science. Science4us.com is a wonderful online curriculum for K-2 which can also be used in grades 3rd-5th for review of key concepts. It was developed in 2010 and has since received several awards. The Department of Education gave them a grant for game-based learning innovation and they used it well.

Science4us.com activity

Science4us.com activity

This is an online curriculum so once you pay ($7.95 per month) they will send you login information and you are good to go. Once logged in, you can choose from four books: Life, Physical, Inquiry, and Earth/Space. Inside each book, you will find different modules which can be picked up in random order. Once inside a module though, you should start from the top left and work your way down through the activities in order.  Continue reading »

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Valentine’s Day Homemade Candy

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Homeschooling allows for lots of time spent together in the kitchen, so here’s a science lesson with sweet lab results…

What says Valentine’s Day better than a homemade chocolate treat? Here’s a recipe I found in a magazine three years ago, which has been a great success with my family. There is a time to eat healthy and there is a time to enjoy a treat. This is the latter time.

 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Bonbons

Mix 1 cup creamy peanut butter, 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, 5 Tbs. unsalted butter, at room temperature, and 1/2 tsp. vanilla in a large bowl.

Knead mixture until smooth, adding up to 1/2 cup more powdered sugar to prevent sticking.

My three-year-old daughter kneads the peanut butter and powdered sugar.

My three-year-old daughter kneads the peanut butter and powdered sugar.

Roll dough into 1” balls and set on a wax paper-lined cookie sheet; chill 1 hour.

Here are the peanut butter balls getting ready to chill in the refrigerator for one hour.

Here are the peanut butter balls getting ready to chill in the refrigerator for one hour.

Line 2 more cookie sheets with wax paper; set aside. Place assorted sprinkles in shallow bowls.

Microwave 1 1/2 cups light cocoa candy melts, stirring every 15 seconds, until smooth. I used a double-boiler because I find it easier.

Drop the balls 5 at a time in the melted chocolate to coat. Removed balls with a fork allowing excess chocolate to drip off. Roll balls in sprinkles to coat. Place on the lined cookie sheets. Repeat with the remaining balls, then chill until chocolate is set. Makes about 40 bonbons.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Bonbons

The last step is the most laborious and you will remember why you only do this once a year. Not just because they are so rich…

I promise your homeschool will be very cheerful the day you make this recipe with the children and then enjoy it with them and hubby.

Valentine's Day RoundUp

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