The best way to to get Johanna interested in any subject (Ok except handwriting) is to bring animals into it.
Recently we discovered on youtube some wonderful Animaniacs videos that starred some very cute and funny but most importantly very bright cats.
these cats, Yakko, wakko, and Dot through their very catchy lyrics have taught my kids the all the states and their capitols, the nations of the world, the planets , all the presidents up until Bill Clinton and some information about the universe. (Note to Steven Spielberg; you're missing out on cash cow not making these songs into CDs. )
My kids are glued to maps and globes and USA puzzle maps. The latest car game is "guess the state!" and both kids can correcty give clues as to East. West or Mid West , although Michael sometimes gets confused or maybe jsut an't remember which state he WAS thinking of they have the right idea.
Geogrpahy is fun! These are also not lessons that end. They go on all day for days with kids learning things about states and making up new games. "Guess the state bird is a new game these days. We have some maps from "Which Way USA" and they give littel bits of info on them including state birds. One day Micael yelled out to me "What is the state bird of Oregon?" while staring at the map.
"Um oriole?" I guess, wondering if he will try and read it or if he even can
"I can't it read it he yells back"
"Spell it to me"
"Ok " he says then very slowly he says, "S-t-a-t-e b-i-r-d" At least he was in the right place on the map.
Another oldie but goodie game is license plate identification, which has us yelling out out of state license plate as they pass by or taking the long way out of the parking lot so we can see , "yup Illinois has President Lincoln on it" Speaking of Abraham Lincoln did you know he is Johanna's favorite president?
This book tells the story abut how Lincoln was an animal lover and pardoned the 1st turkey on Thanksgiving.
If it is true that the way to man's heart is through his stomach then the way to my kids knowledge is through animals.
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Win a curriculum If you are going to use a curriculum this one seems nice and nature based and not too rushed.
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