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Storm in the Night Go-Alongs

Our first FIAR selection of the year, Storm in the Night, spawned a study of clouds, thanks to one of the science lessons presented in Five in a Row volume one and a few things I saw on Homeschool Share.  By the time we finished our readings and activities, Lulu (and sometimes Louise, too) could converse freely about types of clouds and offer our opinion about whether a cloud is cumulus, stratus, or cirrus.  As a family, we also discussed nimbus clouds and even dabbled a little bit in the more complex cloud types:  nimbostratus (or is it stratonimbus?), cumulonimbus, altostratus, etc. 

To introduce the idea of clouds and to expose my girls more to reading nonfiction (we have the fiction part down), I borrowed from the library a number of weather-related and cloud-related nonfiction selections.  Most of them were series books, and really, most of them were just okay, nothing terribly inspiring.  I will mention one here, though, just because I happen to really like the author.  🙂  Tomie DePaola’s The Cloud Book is a fun resource for cloud study because it contains more than just the rudimentary information on types of clouds, etc.  It delves a little into the history and mythology associated with clouds, as well as weather forecasting based on clouds.  Although it contains more details than my girls really need to know at their ages, Lulu will always remember that cirrus clouds look like “mare’s tails.”   😉  With DePaola’s trademark illustrations, this one is a great volume for a study of clouds.

Really, though, nothing beats just going out and looking up, right?  We did a lot of that, too. 



nonfiction_mondayThanks to Sherry, I’ve found a new carnival to participate in!  😉  I’m linking this post over at Bookends Blog for this week’s Nonfiction Monday.

Messy Monday::Storm in the Night Art Activity

I’ve been working hard at incorporating more intentional art activities into our weeks. My girls go through phases of making things on their own, and they have used up reams of paper in their endeavors (and left little giblets all over the house, too). Art is very important to me, and I want it to be important to them, too, if they’re bent that way, so I keep at it. My goal is to include an art activity for every FIAR book we “row.” (For the uninitiated, Five in a Row books are rowed instead of read or studied, since the idea is to read them five days in a row.) Often, the art activity will be something actually suggested in Five in a Row, but I am finding that some of these activities are still a little too much for my kindergartener and preschooler. Thus, I go searching. I found this nifty little project linked over at The Crafty Crow and decided it would be a good fit for us in our rowing of Storm in the Night. Since we have read and enjoyed two of the suggested book selections already (including It Looked Like Spilt Milk which I reviewed here), I decided to introduce the girls to another one of Eric Carle’s wonderfully illustrated books, Little Cloud. In this story, the title character transforms itself into lots of shapes until called upon to perform his real job. This one seemed to me like the perfect choice for the project at hand. Eric Carle’s wonderful books are so accessible to the younger set, both in terms of text and illustrations.

Here’s a little peek into our art activity:


Cloud Book, sans any identifying information 😉

Lulu writing

Filling in a blank with a little help

Louise writing

My lefty, who currently LOVES to write

Lulu bear

Five year old handwriting

Louise bear

Three year old handwriting

Storm in the Night was a great book for our first kindergarten FIAR selection. I’m waffling a little bit right now on how much I want to do with these books. I see all the lapbooking possiblities out there for these wonderful books, and my mind goes into overdrive in planning mode, but I don’t think I’m a lapbooker at heart. However, rather than think that we’re slacking because we’re not “doing” anything with these books, I’m trying to go with the original intent of the Five in a Row philosophy. Heather at Blog, She Wrote, whom I think of as the FIAR Queen, really settled my mind on this matter with this recent post.