As a former Pre-Kindergarten teacher and now stay-at-home mommy of 2 boys and a sweet baby girl, many people ask me how they can be implementing educational concepts in the lives of their young children at home before they enter school. Instead of trying to come up with a quick list of ideas off the top of my head to answer these questions, I have decided to put all of my lessons into this blog. I, along with so many other parents, want to be purposeful at home with my children and make the most of the time I have with them.
I hope that this blog can help, encourage, and inspire you to work with your kiddos and
get involved in the learning process! The benefits will be endless,
and the moments you share together will be priceless! As Dr. Seuss once said,
"The more that you read, the more things you will know.
The more that you learn, the more places you'll go!"

Monday, December 1, 2014

25 Days of Christmas: 2014

Here we go... December is here, and it's time for our 25 Days of Christmas!!!  As you know, I have been horrible about updating my blog, and I apologize for not bringing you more lessons to share with your children.  Because of this, I have decided to make things a little simpler this year so we can all truly enjoy this time and not just rush to get it all done.  So...instead of doing 25 lessons and 25 Random Acts of Christmas Kindness, I will be cutting each category in half and alternating between them.  {12 Christmas lessons/activities and 13 RACKs}  And, as always, we will be doing Advent verses for each day.  Join us as we share the joy of Christmas with those around us and celebrate the true meaning of this season!

{Visit these links to see previous years: 2011, 2012.  Last year was spent just enjoying our newest addition to the family! :)}

* 25 Days of Advent *

* We are doing "A Meaningful Christmas" by Carrie Rogers and Brittany Poe again this year, so I have included those topics and verses below.  Here are a few other links to bible verses to read each day with your children:
~ The Jesus Storybook Bible Advent Verses from Home with the Boys
~ 25 Days of Christmas Scripture Chain from The Things I Love
25 Names of Jesus from I Am Momma Hear Me Roar

1.  Alpha and Omega - Revelation 22:13
2.  The Trinity - Colossians 1:15-16, John 14:16-17
3.  Creation - Acts 17:24
4.  Love - 1 John 4:16
5.  Believe - John 3:16
6.  Bethlehem - Micah 5:2
7.  Promises - Isaiah 7:14
8.  Mary is Chosen - Luke 1:26-28
9.  Trusting God - Luke 1:29-37
10. Immanuel - Matthew 1:20-23
11. Having a Good Attitude - Luke 2:1-5
12. No Room in the Inn - Luke 2:6-7
13. Born in a Manger - Luke 2:6-7
14. Shepherds Were Afraid - Luke 2:8-12
15. Go and Tell - Luke 2:16-18
16. The Wise Men - Matthew 2:1-2
17. The Greatest Gift - Matthew 2:9-10
18. The Word - John 1:1-3
19. The Good Shepherd - John 10:14
20. The Vine - John 15:5
21. The Light of the World - John 8:12
22. The Bread of Life - John 6:48
23. The Way, The Truth, The Life - John 14:6
24. The Lamb of God - John 1:29
25. Happy Birthday, Jesus - Luke 2:11

{Here are printables for the lessons and RACKs if you would like to have something to put in your Advent calendar, as well as a RACK card to place with your gifts.}

* 12 Christmas Lessons *
{Lessons and RACKs will not necessarily be done in this order, but I will post pics and details as we go. Remember, we will be alternating each day!}

1.  Christmas Bingo: Crazy Little Projects



Baby girl kept yelling BINGO, too!!!

2. Christmas Pattern Blocks: PreKinders 

3. Nativity Stick Puppets: My Joy Filled Life

4. Christmas Tree Fact Families: From Me :)
* For this activity, cut out a few Christmas trees and small circles with construction paper.  Write single numbers on the trees and their correlating fact families on the circles.  Have your child find the correct equations for each tree and place them on the trees like ornaments.

5. Fun Christmas Snacks
* I have seen tons of different versions of this snack on Pinterest, as well as lots of other fun Christmas snacks you can make.  We just used items that we had on hand.  Feel free to create whatever you would like!

"Do you want to eat a snowman?!?!"

6.Christmas Fingerprint Crafts: U Create

7. Snow Dough: Buggy and Buddy

8. Snowflake Science Experiment: Blissfully Domestic
* We used sugar instead of Borax, so it will take a little longer for the snowflakes to crystalize.  The website says you can also use salt. I will post pics of how they turn out!

9. The Grinch Who Stole Words: Babbling Abby

10. O is for Olaf: Crafty Morning
11. Gingerbread Man Sequencing: Teachers Pay Teachers
12. Christmas Potato Stamping: Crafty Morning

* 13 Random Acts of Christmas Kindness *

1. Place Barnes and Noble gift cards around the store.

2. Buy and donate toys to Toys for Tots.

3. Write Christmas letters to missionaries.

4. Donate to World Vision Gifts.
* We decided to sponsor 3 children (same age/gender as our kids).  We looked at their pictures and videos, found their country on our globe, sent emails to them, and prayed for each one.

5. Give a Christmas gift to the mailman.

6. Buy and wrap gifts for children in need.

7. Donate coats and blankets to a local charity.

8. Make shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.

9. Mail a care package to a deployed soldier. Operation Gratitude

10. Pay for the person behind you in the drive-through line.

11. Donate old toys to charity.
(Originally we were going to donate food to the food bank, but we decided to give toys away instead.)

12. Color and mail pictures to Color A Smile.

13. Give a gift to someone working on Christmas Day.
(We went to the new gas station that opened right by our house and gave our gift to one of the clerks!  Thank you for working on this holiday!)