Letter of the Week ~ V

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¬†Better late then never, right?! With a Spring baby, a busy, fun-filled Summer and settling back into Fall routines, I fell behind on our Letter of the Week posts. However, I don’t do well with unfinished business, so I will be finishing these posts over the next couple of weeks, in interest of completion ūüôā


 Although my personal philosophy of letter learning is that they cannot be studied in isolation and should be learned in the context of words, as this is how we see them most often, we have a letter of the week at Mommy School.

Why, you may ask, do I do something¬†opposite¬†to what I just finished saying I believe in? Well, for one, we don’t study the one letter in isolation. Typically, we¬†complete a letter craft, create a search and find sensory bin using items that begin with that letter, learn about the various sounds the letter makes in different parts of words (because the English language is crazy!) and¬†plan our weekly fieldtrip to somewhere that begins with our letter. Sometimes, I include the letter in other ways throughout our week, but that’s often just a sweet combination of luck and coincidence!


Here’s what we got up to for Letter V Week:

Letter Dictionary:

Each of my older children gets the chance to find a hidden object that begins with our letter of the week from the rice bin. This week Little Momma chose Vexy smurf and Mr Man selected a vase.

I take a photo of the kids with their chosen objects and then have them¬†complete their dictionary page. Little Momma writes a¬†sentence and illustrates, “V is for Vexy.” and Mr Man copies the upper and lower case letter and then draws his chosen object.

This week our rice bin was transformed into a veterinarian’s office! All of the stuffed animals visited and were cared for by my little vets-in-training!

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Letter Craft:

V is for Vase.

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To make your own: Pre-cut an upper-case letter V from construction paper. Provide some blue water, green stems and a variety of flowers and allow the kids to create! We glued our letter onto a background to help our flowers stay up strong!

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Field Trip: 

V is for veterinarian.

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For this week’s field-trip Friday¬†we visited the Veterinary Hospital in our town. The kid’s loved meeting the animal doctors and their patients, trying on the x-ray vest, locating microchips and seeing what goes on behind the scenes at the veterinarians! The lovely front desk staff even put together a great little package for the kids to take home, which included stickers, poop bags, colouring books and animal safety tips! The kids were thrilled!

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Journal Writing: 

To end-off our week the kids each spend some time writing in their journals about our weekly field trip. Often it is pictures for my younger guy with a few scribed¬†sentences, while my eldest will write a few simple sentences on her own, using her word wall, ‘best guess’ spelling and some assistance from myself (she’s my perfectionist!).

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Art Appreciation ~ Pollock

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I love the arts, especially the creativity it evokes in young people. However, my own artistic ability, as it relates to visual arts, is very limited, and so I thought a fun way to integrate it into our school plan for the year would be through monthly Art Appreciation projects.


We had a blast exploring a number of messy painting methods, in our attempt to emulate Jackson Pollock’s famous abstract expressionist Drip Painting style.

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To prepare I took out a variety of paint colours, some paint trays and necessary items required, which I have listed in each section. Then we put on some paint clothes and had fun getting messy!

String Art

Required Materials: paint, tray, paper, clothespins and pieces of string (approximately 5cm in length)

First up was String Art. Each child was given their materials and created a masterpiece by dragging the string, clamped in the clothespin, through paint and around the paper.

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Marble Art

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Required Materials: paint, tray, paper, marbles (we used 3)

Next up was Marble Art. Each child was given their materials and created a masterpiece by rolling the marbles through blobs of paint and around the paper.

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Splatter Art

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Required Materials: paint, paper, an assortment of “splatter” instruments (those we used are pictured above)

Finally, we had some fun with Splatter Art. For this one, a nice day and some outdoor/easily washable space is highly recommended. Each child was given their materials and access to any of the instruments. Then they each created a unique masterpiece by using their instruments to splatter paint across their paper.

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This was a fantastic art medium for those active kids, who aren’t always willing to sit still for a typical art lesson or craft.

We were also quite intrigued by the variety of outcomes, as no two masterpieces were alike!

All in all we had a great time appreciating Pollock’s art methods!

Have fun and let us know how you made out, if you decide to try it!

Letter of the Week ~ U

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¬†Better late then never, right?! With a Spring baby, a busy, fun-filled Summer and settling back into Fall routines, I fell behind on our Letter of the Week posts. However, I don’t do well with unfinished business, so I will be finishing these posts over the next couple of weeks, in interest of completion ūüôā


 Although my personal philosophy of letter learning is that they cannot be studied in isolation and should be learned in the context of words, as this is how we see them most often, we have a letter of the week at Mommy School.

Why, you may ask, do I do something¬†opposite¬†to what I just finished saying I believe in? Well, for one, we don’t study the one letter in isolation. Typically, we¬†complete a letter craft, create a search and find sensory bin using items that begin with that letter, learn about the various sounds the letter makes in different parts of words (because the English language is crazy!) and¬†plan our weekly fieldtrip to somewhere that begins with our letter. Sometimes, I include the letter in other ways throughout our week, but that’s often just a sweet combination of luck and coincidence!


Here’s what we got up to for Letter U Week:

Letter Dictionary:

Each of my older children gets the chance to find a hidden object that begins with our letter of the week from the rice bin. This week Little Momma and Mr Man both selected an item of Fire Fighter uniform.

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I take a photo of the kids with their chosen objects and then have them¬†complete their dictionary page. Little Momma writes a¬†sentence and illustrates, “U is for uniform.” and Mr Man copies the upper and lower case letter and then draws his chosen object.

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Letter Craft:

U is for Underwater.

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To make your own: Pre-cut an upper-case letter U from blue construction paper. Provide some blue tissue paper to attach behind and an assortment of fish to swim around! This doubled as a great fine-motor, counting and colour learning activity, in addition to our letter of the week craft!

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Field Trip: 

U is for uniform.

For this week’s field-trip Friday¬†we visited the local Police and Fire Department in our town. The kid’s loved checking out the officer’s vehicles, trying on the uniforms and seeing the ins and outs of both stations!

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Journal Writing: 

To end-off our week the kids each spend some time writing in their journals about our weekly field trip. Often it is pictures for my younger guy with a few scribed¬†sentences, while my eldest will write a few simple sentences on her own, using her word wall, ‘best guess’ spelling and some assistance from myself (she’s my perfectionist!).

 

Letter of the Week ~ S

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Although my personal philosophy of letter learning is that they cannot be studied in isolation and should be learned in the context of words, as this is how we see them most often, we have a letter of the week at Mommy School.

Why, you may ask, do I do something opposite to what I just finished saying I believe in? Well, for one, we don’t study the one letter in isolation. Typically, we¬†complete a letter craft, create a search and find sensory bin using items that begin with that letter, learn about the various sounds the letter makes in different parts of words (because the English language is crazy!) and plan our weekly fieldtrip to somewhere that begins with our letter. Sometimes, I include the letter in other ways throughout our week, but that’s often just a sweet combination of luck and coincidence!


Here’s what we got up to for Letter S¬†Week:

Letter Dictionary:

Each of my older children gets the chance to find a hidden object that begins with our letter of the week from the rice bin. This week Little Momma chose a sheep and Mr Man selected Sleeping Beauty.

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I take a photo of the kids with their chosen objects and then have them¬†complete¬†their dictionary page. Little Momma writes a¬†sentence and illustrates, “S is for sheep.” and Mr Man copies the upper and lower case letter and then draws his chosen object.

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Letter Craft:

S is for Snowman.

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To make your own: Pre-cut an upper-case letter S from white construction paper. Provide a black hat,  orange carrot nose, pieces for a mouth, buttons, a scarf and some googly eyes. And allow your child(ren) to create a cute snowman of their very own.

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Field Trip: 

S¬†is for stamps.¬†For this week’s field-trip Friday¬†we visited the Canadian stamp collection at our local History Museum. The kid’s loved picking out those with their favourite pictures and Mr Man was especially excited to see both hockey and super hero collections!

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Journal Writing: 

To end-off our week the kids each spend some time writing in their journals about our weekly field trip. Often it is pictures for my younger guy with a few scribed¬†sentences, while my eldest will write a few simple sentences on her own, using her word wall, ‘best guess’ spelling and some assistance from myself (she’s my perfectionist!).

Letter of the Week ~ R

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Although my personal philosophy of letter learning is that they cannot be studied in isolation and should be learned in the context of words, as this is how we see them most often, we have a letter of the week at Mommy School.

Why, you may ask, do I do something opposite to what I just finished saying I believe in? Well, for one, we don’t study the one letter in isolation. Typically, we complete a letter craft, create a search and find sensory bin using items that begin with that letter, learn about the various sounds the letter makes in different parts of words (because the English language is crazy!) and plan our weekly fieldtrip to somewhere that begins with our letter. Sometimes, I include the letter in other ways throughout our week, but that’s often just a sweet combination of luck and coincidence!


Here’s what we got up to for Letter R¬†Week:

Letter Dictionary:

Each of my older children gets the chance to find a hidden object that begins with our letter of the week from the rice bin.

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I take a photo of the kids with their chosen objects and then have them complete their dictionary page. This week they both chose ‘Rockets’, which happens when candy is an option, I suppose! Little Momma writes a¬†sentence and illustrates, “R is for Rockets.” and Mr Man copies the upper and lower case letter and then draws his chosen object.

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Letter Craft:

R is for Raccoon.

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To make your own: Pre-cut an upper-case letter R from blue/gray construction paper. Provide black ears, mask, stripes, nose, claws and some googly eyes.

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R¬†is for rest, reading, Rio and racing!¬†For this week’s field-trip Friday Mommy was feeling under the weather, and so Little Momma suggested some R & R at home!

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Hot Wheels Races:

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Journal Writing: 

To end-off our week the kids each spend some time writing in their journals about our weekly field trip. Often it is pictures for my younger guy with a few scribed¬†sentences, while my eldest will write a few simple sentences on her own, using her word wall, ‘best guess’ spelling and some assistance from myself (she’s my perfectionist!).

Letter of the Week ~ Q

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Although my personal philosophy of letter learning is that they cannot be studied in isolation and should be learned in the context of words, as this is how we see them most often, we have a letter of the week at Mommy School.

Why, you may ask, do I do something opposite to what I just finished saying I believe in? Well, for one, we don’t study the one letter in isolation. Typically, we complete a letter craft, create a search and find sensory bin using items that begin with that letter, learn about the various sounds the letter makes in different parts of words (because the English language is crazy!) and plan our weekly fieldtrip to somewhere that begins with our letter. Sometimes, I include the letter in other ways throughout our week, but that’s often just a sweet combination of luck and coincidence!


Here’s what we got up to for Letter Q¬†Week:

Letter Dictionary:

Each of my older children gets the chance to find a hidden object that begins with our letter of the week from the rice bin. This week Little Momma chose a queen and Mr Man selected a quilt.

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I take a photo of the kids with their chosen objects and then have them complete their dictionary page. Little Momma writes a¬†sentence and illustrates, “Q is for queen.” and Mr Man copies the upper and lower case letter and then draws his chosen object.

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 Letter Craft:

Q is for Quilt.

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To make your own: Pre-cut an upper-case letter Q from cardstock. Provide squares of fabric and allow your child(ren) to create their own pattern.

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Field Trip: 

Q is for Quiver, the piece of archery equipment that holds the arrows!

{With some letters we have to get creative!!}

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For this week’s field-trip Friday we visited That Hunting and Fishing Store’s archery range¬†here in Ottawa. The owner, Jen, happily showed the kids how to shoot a bow and arrow and explained the equipment required for archery.

The kids had a great time and even made their own targets at home to use with their Dollar Store bow and arrows!

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Journal Writing: 

To end-off our week the kids each spend some time writing in their journals about our weekly field trip. Often it is pictures for my younger guy with a few scribed¬†sentences, while my eldest will write a few simple sentences on her own, using her word wall, ‘best guess’ spelling and some assistance from myself (she’s my perfectionist!).

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Letter of the Week ~ P

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 Although my personal philosophy of letter learning is that they cannot be studied in isolation and should be learned in the context of words, as this is how we see them most often, we have a letter of the week at Mommy School.

Why, you may ask, do I do something opposite to what I just finished saying I believe in? Well, for one, we don’t study the one letter in isolation. Typically, we complete a letter craft, create a search and find sensory bin using items that begin with that letter, learn about the various sounds the letter makes in different parts of words (because the English language is crazy!) and plan our weekly fieldtrip to somewhere that begins with our letter. Sometimes, I include the letter in other ways throughout our week, but that’s often just a sweet combination of luck and coincidence!


Here’s what we got up to for Letter P¬†Week:

Letter Dictionary:

Each of my older children gets the chance to find a hidden object that begins with our letter of the week from the rice bin. This week Little Momma chose a police car and Mr Man selected a polar bear.

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I take a photo of the kids with their chosen objects and then have them complete their dictionary page. Little Momma writes a¬†sentence and illustrates, “P is for police.” and Mr Man copies the upper and lower case letter and then draws his chosen object.

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Letter Craft:

P is for Pig.

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To make your own: Pre-cut an upper-case letter P from pink construction paper. Provide a pig nose, tail and ears cut from pink paper, as well as black details for ears and nostrils and some googly eyes.

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Field Trip: 

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For this week’s field-trip Friday we visited the Parliament buildings¬†here in Ottawa and went up the Peace Tower. The kids loved the view of the city (though they thought it was the whole world!) from up in the clock tower!

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Journal Writing: 

To end-off our week the kids each spend some time writing in their journals about our weekly field trip. Often it is pictures for my younger guy with a few scribed¬†sentences, while my eldest will write a few simple sentences on her own, using her word wall, ‘best guess’ spelling and some assistance from myself (she’s my perfectionist!).

 

Monthly Book Club ‚ąľ Jan Brett

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With the New Year we have started a monthly book club for a group of fellow homeschoolers in our area.

Each month will feature a new children’s author and share the love of reading with our early readers. The plan will be to read a story together, have other titles by the author available for the children to read and then bring our story to life through a craft and hands-on activity.


For the month of FEBRUARY we celebrated the beautiful stories of Jan Brett!

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Our primary focus for book club was “The Mitten”, but we also had the following titles on hand for the children to enjoy:

  • The 3 Little Dassies
  • Mossy
  • Armadillo Rodeo
  • Trouble with Trolls
  • The Hat
  • On Noah’s Ark
  • The Umbrella
  • Gingerbread Baby
  • Cinders
  • Hedgie’s Surprise

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We began by lacing a card stock mitten. Each child then got a bag of animal cutouts for a sequencing activity. While I read the story aloud, the kids got to put the appropriate animal into the mitten, the cut-outs had both pictures and words so they were great for a variety of ages.

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After reading the story we discussed what kinds of things would typically fit inside a mitten. We came to the consensus that this was likely a fictional story, which had been exaggerated just a bit!

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 For our craft we made some stained-glass mittens. I lined the backs of some cut-out mitten frames with contact paper and had a variety of tissue paper pieces for the kids to stick to the tacky paper. Each child was able to punch a hole in their mitten and thread a string through to hang them.

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And they look very pretty collecting sunlight in our window!

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My eldest and I also did a follow up comparison activity using¬†Jan Brett’s,¬†The Mitten, The¬†Umbrella and The Hat. These stories all follow a very similar story line from which many similarities can be drawn, but they also have very obvious differences. And can even be used as a great springboard for a unit on animal habitats.

Come back next month and dive into the timeless and tongue-twisting tales of Dr. Seuss along with us at Mommy School!

Letter of the Week ~ O

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Although my personal philosophy of letter learning is that they cannot be studied in isolation and should be learned in the context of words, as this is how we see them most often, we have a letter of the week at Mommy School.

Why, you may ask, do I do something opposite to what I just finished saying I believe in? Well, for one, we don’t study the one letter in isolation. Typically, we complete a letter craft, create a search and find sensory bin using items that begin with that letter, learn about the various sounds the letter makes in different parts of words (because the English language is crazy!) and plan our weekly fieldtrip to somewhere that begins with our letter. Sometimes, I include the letter in other ways throughout our week, but that’s often just a sweet combination of luck and coincidence!


Here’s what we got up to for Letter O Week:

Letter Dictionary:

Each of my older children gets the chance to find a hidden object that begins with our letter of the week from the rice bin. This week Little Momma chose Ursula the octopus and Mr Man selected an ogre, Princess Fiona.

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I take a photo of the kids with their chosen objects and then have them complete their dictionary page. Little Momma writes a¬†sentence and illustrates, “O is for octopus.” and Mr Man copies the upper and lower case letter and then draws his chosen object.

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Letter Craft:

O is for Ostrich.

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To make your own: Pre-cut an upper-case letter O from black construction paper. Provide an ostrich neck, tail and 2 feet cut from pink paper, as well as an orange beak and some googly eyes.

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Field Trip: 

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For this week’s field-trip Friday we visited the National Art Center here in Ottawa¬†for a tour of their orchestra pit. It was pretty neat to see behind the scenes!

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Journal Writing: 

To end-off our week the kids each spend some time writing in their journals about our weekly field trip. Often it is pictures for my younger guy with a few scribed¬†sentences, while my eldest will write a few simple sentences on her own, using her word wall, ‘best guess’ spelling and some assistance from myself (she’s my perfectionist!).

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100th Day of Homeschool!

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And just like that we have had 100 days of Mommyschool! We have read and played, learned and explored and have thoroughly enjoyed our adventure thus far!

I have been blown away (with both exhaustion and love) by this experience, but I will save my own reflection for another day.

Here’s how we celebrated 100 days of learning:

We counted to 100 using our hundreds chart and discussed how 100 was 10 groups of 10. then using 10 different water colours and Qtips we drew/dotted 100 gumballs on our gumball machine template.

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We talked about how big the number 100 is. And for little ones just beginning to grasp the idea of number sense it truly is a HUGE number! I drew 2 pictures of a cup and showed them the actual cup and droppers we would use and then had the kids predict what 100 drops of water would look like.

Following their predictions we got some water (which I coloured blue to make it easier to see) and measured out 100 drops into our cups and recorded our findings. Both of them were pretty surprised at how little water we actually got from those 100 drops!

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It has been frigid in our parts lately…actually all Winter, so for our daily physical activity we were indoors. We completed a 100 fitness movements challenge, which the kids LOVED and we have been doing daily ever since!

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We made a list of 100 words we know (even after they insisted NOBODY knows THAT many words!). And yes, ‘poop’ and ‘pee’ made the list, but so did ‘mosaic’, ‘kindness’ and ‘vehicle’, so I let it go,,,you’ve got to pick your battles, right?!

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We counted out 100 Duplo blocks and experimented with what we could build with them.

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We bingo-daubed 10 ten-frame caterpillars to help reinforce the concept of 100 being 10 groups of 10.

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And while the littles napped, Little Momma and I had a roll the dice race to 100 – which she won, but was kind enough to help me finish, too!

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We had a really fun day celebrating 100 days of homeschool, anyone else do anything to commemorate the achievement?