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HSV Garden Challenge #4

Our Peter Rabbit garden is coming along nicely. 

We harvested the radishes during our "row" of The Story of Peter Rabbit.

However, we left one lone little radish to let it go to seed. The stalk is over 3 feet tall! and has little white and purple flowers.

"Other seeds fell into the good soil, and as they grew up and increased, they yielded a crop and produced thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold."

Can't wait to see how many more seeds we get from this one little radish! We planted new radish seeds hoping for another crop, while we wait. 

Hard to believe just a month ago our Peter Rabbit garden looked like this:

And now this:

If you look closely, you can see that our turnips (that we are growing for our row with the book Down, Down the Mountain) are shading the carrots. I've never grown turnips before, but now I know to plant them on the north side of the box. (That is what I mean by a "trial and error gardener" ~ I live, I learn, I move on learning from my mistakes. . . and keep moving forward). I learn something new every season (in life and gardening) and I hope my kids are catching on to that.

I am pleased with how well onions make my garden look so green.

And these little sweeties are pretty pleasing as well:

I have a fond memory of picking peas from the garden when I was a child and these just make me happy.

Here is my "baby:"

I am trying something new this year.  Rather than use cages, I am vining my roma tomatoes with bamboo poles and gardening tape. To do this, I snip off the tomato leaves that do not produce fruit. This encourages the plant to grow taller and puts the energy into producing fruit. And I stake the tomato vines with gardening tape that stretches for growth. I can squeeze more plants into less space this way. I learned this technique from SFGI hope 50 plants in a 4x8 box isn't too much. . . if so, I'll know for next year!

The marigolds I started from seed are flowering, too! (My first time doing this). 

Here is a wide angle view. In the far right corner is a three sisters bed (corn, beans and squash). This is my first time trying that too. 

This has been the worst year for mosquitos that I can remember. Here is my solution that I picked up from our local greenhouse/gardening center:

Citronella oil, clove oil, peppermint oil and rosemary oil (smells good)

Next to my tomato box is three hills of cucumbers, that I started recently. This box was supposed to be for tomatoes, but I lost some from hardening them off too quickly (we have had a lot of cold rainy days and I wanted to get them in the ground because they were getting leggy). 


I noticed this morning that my cucumber seedlings are infested with an unidentified pest. Here is my 1st defense:

The active ingredients are rosemary oil, peppermint oil, thyme oil, and clove oil.  I gave a light mist spray over the whole garden. Let's hope it works. 

I've never blogged so much about my garden this early, but I am thankful to the Homeschool Village for hosting the garden challenge. If I had not been motivated to get out and start working on my garden when I did, I don't think I would have gotten as much done with all the rain we have had. Thanks HSV! 

Thanks for following along with my gardening adventure. . .

I went from this:

to this:

And we just might have some sun after all this Summer. =)

Learning Wrap-Ups Learning Palette from Usborne Books {Review}

I had a wonderful opportunity to review The Learning Palette Starter Set for 1st grade.  I am so excited to share this with you, and then offer you a chance to win a starter set for the grade of your choice!

The Learning Palette is a fun, hands on, self correcting learning game for grades K-4.

This set contains 12 learning cards covering essential math skills:
  • Counting 9-12
  • Counting by 5s
  • Combinations of 10
  • Basic Elements of Addition
  • Basic Elements of Subtraction
  • Understanding <,>, =, 
  • Sequencing
  • Sequencing of Events
  • Matching Shapes (Real to Abstract).
How to play:
  1. Remove the colored disks
  2. Place a learning card on base
  3. Answer questions using appropriate colored disks
  4. Turn card over to check answers 

Matching Shapes

Sequencing Events
Making Patterns
Colors match - you did it right! 
See a flash demonstration to see more.

It's easy to use, fun to play and just the right amount of challenge for my first grader. And I love that it teaches children to correct themselves. 

Additional learning cards are available for the Learning Palette. Here are some that I have my eye on:

Alphabet Beginning Level

Counting Level 1

Addition Level 1

I've also got my eye on a few of the original Learning Wrap-Ups:

Learning Wrap-Ups ~ Addition

Learning Wrap-Ups ~ Subtraction

I plan to use the Addition/Subtraction Wrap ups with 10 Secrets to Addition/Subtraction Mastery for an intensive program to master addition/subtraction facts! {I have the book, just need the Wrap Ups!}

Here is your chance to win a Learning Palette Starter Set of your grade choice! (Choose between K, 1st or 2nd) To enter, just leave me a comment letting me know you'd like to be entered!

Giveaway is now over! Congrats to Jennifer Stone, commenter #25. 

Additional entry options:
  1. Subscribe/follow Delightful Learning
  2. Post about the giveaway on Facebook or Twitter 
  3. Follow Delightful Learning on Twitter.
  4. "Like" Delightful Learning on Facebook
  5. "Like" Heather's Usborne Books Facebook Page
  6. Visit my eShow and tell me of a product that catches your eye. (Details below)

Your comment is your entry! Please leave me a comment for each additional entry. This giveaway will end July 12th, midnight, EST. A winner will be selected at random and notified by email. You will then have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen. U.S. shipping only.


You are invited to explore the world of Usborne Books! Heather at Usborne Books is hosting an eShow for me.  This means that if you order anything from the links on this blog for the month of July, I can earn free books!
Guess what? You can too! If you are interested in hosting your own eShow, let me know!

Note: A purchase is not required to enter the giveaway. 

I'm linking up with Hip Homeschool Moms. Check out HHM for some more "giveaway goodness."

Disclosure: I received the Learning Palette for free in exchange for an honest review. I was not paid for this post, nor do I have to return the product. Please see my disclosure policy for more information. 

Mirette on the High Wire {FI♥AR}

Mirette on the High Wire, set in France, is a story about a young girl named Mirette who learns to walk on the high wire and helps Bellini, a retired high wire walker, overcome his fear. We learned about circus agents, circus acts, balance, set up a high-wire in our back yard (similar to the Slackline), did some experiments with copper, made some circus food (corn dogs and funnel cakes) and even had our own circus! This was a very fun row, and we rowed it in one week. I also included the Bible lessons from the FIAR Character and Bible Study Supplement. We talked about boasting, gifts and talents, determination, and encouragement (I schedule this M-Th).

Here is what our week looked like:

[Monday] Social Studies:

Geography: Map of Bellini's career (Niagra Falls, Barcelona, Spain; Naples, Italy; Alps, Seine River, Paris, France), lapbook activity.

Occupation: Circus Agent [Discussion]

[Tuesday] Language Arts: vocabulary from the story, compound words, and we were able to tie in 2 lessons from our Daily 6-Traits Writing.

Malachi is learning about details in Writing, so while were planning details of our "Circus Party," I had him draw details of the party.

Malachi narrated the story to me a little different this week. We learned that a story has a beginning, middle and end, so he told me what happens in the beginning, middle and end of Mirette on the High Wire for his 6-Traits Writing:


"A stranger came to stay at the boardinghouse. He was the Great Bellini."


"Mirette saw him walking on the air. She wanted to learn so she started practicing."


He drew a picture. [Mirette and Bellini walk on the wire together].

[Wednesday] Science: balance, copper (lesson from the manual and copper layer book from HSS), copper as a conductor of electricity (Build a Battery), Copper Attraction (Science Experiments in a Bag).


We read Usborne Science Activities Vol 3, In Your Ears (p. 34-35). We learned that ears not only help us hear, but they help us keep balance. I had Mali and Elli do the spinning activity from the book.

In the Spotlight

We also read Science Activities Vol 1 p. 52 Traveling Light {there is a spotlight on Bellini when he walks on the wire}

Copper Attraction Experiment from Science Experiments in a Bag

We found the dirtiest pennies we could find (even found one that was turning green) and dipped them in a solution of vinegar and salt water.
After we soaked them in the solution, we rinsed half of them and let the other half sit. . . and put two iron nails in the solution - one half way.

After a few hours, the pennies started to turn green. This happens because. . . the copper atoms from the pennies, oxygen from the air, and chlorine from the salt make a blue-green compound called malachite. (I had to look that up again). 

And the copper ions from the pennies attached to the nails. It wasn't noticeable until I saw the rust colored marks left by the nails. This happens because the positive copper ions are attracted to the negatively charged nail. 

Build a Battery Experiment from 101 Great Science Experiments (#89)

When you place copper, aluminum and salt together, they make electricity. We made a battery by building layers of aluminum foil, salt, and copper pennies. We connected a copper wire to the aluminum disc on the bottom. . .

added the layers of foil, paper soaked in salt water and pennies. Then we attached another wire to the penny on top.

We wrapped on wire around the post of a pair of earphones and used the other wire to scratch the post. 

And we heard the sound of electricity! Static! (:
I explained that a battery is made up of layers of chemicals that react to make electricity. The book had a photo of what is inside a battery. I explained that when a battery dies, it means all the chemicals are used up. (Thanks to my husband for the super idea to use copper as a conductor of electricity). :)

Note: there is also a great illustration and similar activity in Usborne Science Activities Volume 3 p. 18-19. You can make a battery and a meter to test your battery using a "bronze" coin ~ a copper coin would work just as well. 

[Thursday] Art: Circus Posters, Performing Artists ~ Circus Performers: jugglers, acrobats, tight-rope walkers, clowns. {Bellini is Jean Francois Gravelet ~ the "Great Blondin"}

I had Mali and Elli tell me what they wanted their poster to say, downloaded some fun circus fonts and then printed the letters. I cut them out too, and had them help arrange the sign.

We got "Stupendous Feats" from the story and used the shapes from the Circus Preschool Pack (below) to decorate it. (We did the rest of the preschool pack on Friday.)  I also made some signs for the circus acts and carnival games using synonyms of stupendous and had the little ones help me decorate them. Then we had our own little circus! 

With the shapes and numbers printables, I made some cute little bag books ~ thanks to Tamara @ A Homemaker's Heart for the inspiration! She makes the cutest little bag books (see a few B4FIAR books here) and I had to give them a try.

Thanks to Itsy Bitsy Learners for the cute preschool pack!

We also did a sequencing activity and printed a clown sheet for which you make play dough balls for the clown to juggle, but I didn't get around to making play dough. 


Note: I timed our circus during the week that the Y hosts Vacation Bible School - the VBS tents were the perfect back drop for our little circus! 

Here is a peak at our circus fun:

Reciting Bible Bee verses {This little cutie wowed us all!}

Carnival Games

Fun! But, challenging game!

"Funny Photos" Photo Booth

Mirette on the High Wire is a Five in a Row selection from Volume 2. 

Delightful Links:

Preschool Corner {& 5K too!}
Mirette on the High Wire Resources at HSS
Circus Preschool Pack
Circus tickets