Friday, May 8, 2009

Game Day

I think I've written in the past about our game day tradition.  The boys get to select one day each month where all we do is play games.  There are no other structured lessons that day.  What we learn, we learn from games.  Usually, each of us pick two games.  It takes us several hours to play all six games.  Sometimes, we don't even get to all of the games because we run out of time.  Sometimes, we save a game for when Daddy gets home and we all play around the supper table.


Because my boys are young, they don't save their game days.  So we usually have a game day early in the month, usually one of the first couple days.  This month was no exception.  Game day was on the 4th of the month, which was only the second weekday we had this month.


The games we selected were:  scrabble sentences, racko, sorry, don't break the ice, splash and yatzee.  This month, we had lots of math games and only one game to reinforce language arts.  But what a language arts game it was!  I want to tell you about Scrabble Sentences. 

I picked up this game at a thrift store over a year ago.  Recently while shopping at one of my favorite yard sales, I saw another copy of this game.  My husband actually picked it up and brought it to my attention because it looked like such a good game.  I quickly told him that we already have that game.  This is a fun game made up of 21 dice, a dice shaker, timere, and a scorepad...that's it!  Each of the dice has six words written on them.  When it's your turn, you shake the dice onto the table and try to make sentences out of the words that roll face-up onto the table.  The sentences must cross each other like words on a scrabble board would.  For every sentence that uses seven words or more, you score 50 points.  If your sentences are below 7 words, you multiply the number of words by that number to get your score.  For instance,  a four-word sentence scores 16 points (4 x 4). 


The timer is short, just three minutes.  And we have yet to use all of our dice to build inter-locking sentences before the timer was finished.  As you are building sentences, the rest of the players look on.  Our boys like to read as you go.  As you may imagine, we come up with some pretty silly sentences.


This game could easily be made at home.  Get some small wooden blocks at the craft store and use a permanent marker to write various words onto the blocks.  Be sure to use a good mixture of nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs, but don't forget the articles!  If you need some help making your dice permanent, check out my blog entry about making dice.


I highly recommend scrabble sentences.  It reinforces grammar for the boys, and it's just plain fun!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Poppy's Birthday

Yesterday we celebrated my father's 76th birthday.  I'm so gratefule for how active and healthy my parents are.  My mom still walks 4-5 miles a day.  My dad still works as an EMT!  We joined two of my siblings on my parents sun-porch to have an ice cream cake in Dad's honor.  Enjoy the pictures!


Three of Poppy's THIRTEEN grandchildren joined him for his party.  That's Big Mac on the left, T-bone is standing above Poppy and the boys' cousin (my neice) Little Fish is on the right.  No, we didn't put 76 candles on the cake!


Seventy-six looks pretty good!  This is a close-up picture that Big Mac took with our camera.  He's getting to be a good little photographer!  When he finished taking the picture, Poppy said, "Did you really take my picture?"  And he showed it to him on the screen.  He was standing so close, Poppy didn't believe that he was really taking it!


It was a great day.  A great celebration!

Friday, May 1, 2009

A Walk in the Woods

The Big Dog was planning a turkey hunting excursion last week and he announced that we would all take a walk in the woods to set up his hunting area, called the blind.  So on a Thursday evening after supper we all marched across the field behind our house and into the woods.


I love a walk in the woods.  I took the camera and practiced my close-up shots.  This is the best one:


While walking we saw what changes were made in the woods over the Winter months. This tree didn't fare so well:


We walked up to where The Big Dog wanted to hunt and the boys helped him to set up his blind.  Then we headed back to the edge of the woods.  When we reached a clearing I just had to get a picture of my three guys.  Here's Big Mac, the Big Dog and T-bone after an exhilarating walk in the woods!