July 12, 2012

MFW Kindergarten - Mm is for Moon

Moon Unit for Kindergarten

*JZ is 5 years old*

This week we studied:
Unit 2 of MFW
Unit 9 of You Can Read

Printables pictured are from MFW or YCR unless otherwise mentioned.

Solar System

Words to Remember:
I am the light of the World

You can read about our curriculum choice and organization HERE.

I am running behind getting this posted.  We are well into the next unit, and I realized I hadn't finished this post!  You can read J-Bug's Tot Preschool post that coincides with this week HERE.

So far I am thrilled with our curriculum choice.  While researching I kept coming back to My Father's World, and I am really loving it.  Not every curriculum will work for every family, but we are truly loving it.  The hands on activities are perfect for my active boys.  The way the information is presented really captivates their attention and makes teaching enjoyable.  They look forward to what we have planned each (school) day.

This week was all about the moon.  We read quite a few books on the subject, some just for fun and other with a plethora of information about our moon and the solar system. 

We sing quite a bit every day.  Our family is very musical, and all four boys seem to love singing.  (K and K babble in tune.  It's very sweet.)  Two favorite songs from the week were This Little Light of Mine and S-P-A-C-E to the tune of B-I-N-G-O.  

I know how to spell space,
And this is how you spell it:
S-P-A-C-E, S-P-A-C-E, S-P-A-C-E
And this is how you spell it.

We sped up each verse, and the boys cracked up each time.  JZ's face had to have hurt at the end of each school day from how big he smiled during this.  

We made a Moon Cake:

1 1/4 cups sifted cake flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 egg whites at room temperature

Preheat over to 375 degrees.  Sift flour with salt and set aside.  Cream butter until light, gradually adding in 1/2 cup of sugar.  Mix in dry ingredients slowly.  Put batter into a greased, round cake pan.  In a separate bowl beat egg whites until frothy, slowly add remaining sugar, and beat to very soft peaks.  Add vanilla and almond extracts to the egg mixture.  J-Bug was in charge of sifting.  I showed JZ how to separate the egg yolk from the whites.  They both love helping with the mixer and know the proper safety precautions.  I created three openings in the batter to represent craters on the moon's surface, one small, one medium, and one large.  I asked the boys to point out which crater was the biggest, smallest and medium.  We added the milk to the large crater, baking soda to the small, and the egg mixture to the medium crater.  Then JZ poured the vinegar on the surface of our moon, and we watched it all bubble together.  Combining baking soda and vinegar is a favorite around here, so both boys had eager, expectant grins are we did this.  Next we mixed everything until combined and then pushed raisins, or moon rocks, into the batter.  The cake baked for 25 minutes and turned out a tad darker than I would have liked it, so I suggest checking it after 20 minutes.  Once cooled, I sliced the cake in half and discussed whole and half with JZ and introduced the phases of the moon, which we discussed in more detail another day.

Using Education Cubes we played Astronauts to Earth, from Mama Jenn.  Instead of playing a game as a competition, we played together.  

The theme for the MeMeTales Readathon last week was Character Development, so I decided it would be more effective to use teamwork and cheer each other on than to compete.

We made a space rocket snack out of half a banana, a pineapple ring and strawberry pieces.  The strawberries were JZ's idea.  He said we needed fire.

We read Little Bear and made space helmets just like Little Bear wore in Little Bear Goes to the Moon.


Here was the invitation I set out for the boys.

J-Bug loves any opportunity to paint.  He only occasionally reaches for his painting supplies himself, but any time I set out a few colors and supplies he jumps right in.

JZ is hit or miss with paint, however he loved the prospect of making a space helmet.

While painting, we planned our space trip.  We discussed where we would go and what we would see.

J-Bug told me he was going to jump off the "really, really, really high bean bag" to get to outer space.

Every paint project turns to finger painting and color mixing in our house lately.

We left the paper sacks out to dry while we went to the park with friends.  After nap time we added pipe cleaners and found places all around the house to jump off of and pretend we were Little Bear.

Here is an update of the grapes we set outside last week during our study of the sun.  They are getting closer to raisins!

Using baking soda I had JZ make the phases of the moon on black cardstock that I had cut into four inch squares.  I firmly believe that children learn best through sensory play, so by having him press the textured baking soda onto the paper, the images of the moon phases were ingrained into his head.  

(You could use flour, cornstarch, etc.  I used baking soda simple because we had a small amount left in an old box.)

Last weekend JZ asked Daddy to take the training wheels off his bike, and he has been zooming around ever since!

In J-Bug's Tot Preschool post I wrote about making straw rockets.  Since we spent a lot of time talking about rockets, I created a fun experiment to demonstrate how gas propels rockets by using a balloon.  Using the straw rocket template from Teach Beside Me, the boys colored and cut out their a second rocket.  (They each made one with a straw first.)  Instead of rolling the paper, I taped a balloon to the back of their rockets.  They blew up their balloons then released them to watch their rockets soar!  I explained how the air that they blew into the balloon rushes out of the opening.  When the air pushes through the balloon's neck it pushes the balloon forward.  A rocket is pushed by gases that are made from the burning rocket fuel.

One day we made a quick and simple space ship.  I draped an old comforter over our coffee table. I rolled a piece of poster board into a cone shape then covered it with foil.  I covered two card board squares with foil, and the three of us decorated them using paint and sponge stamps.  I attached the squares to the comforter using duct tape once the paint had dried.  Then we crawled under the table and set off on an adventure!  For added fun, I grabbed a few glow sticks to give us light inside the rocket.

I found this awesome printable on Living Life Intentionally to make Oreos to show the phases of the moon.  We NEVER have Oreos in the house, (because I have no self control with them whatsoever!)  The boys could hardly contain their excitement at this special treat.  This was such a simple yet awesome tool for teaching.  Since that day, JZ is constantly taking bites out of his food and asking me which phase the moon is in.

Be sure and check out the fun JZ had reviewing coin values with GLOWING fun in my guest post at Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas.


  1. Wow Allison! You planned so many fun activities...Love the moon cakes and oreo moon phases!

  2. Everything looks awesome! I love the grape-raisin experiment!

  3. Looks like you've been very busy! I loved the noodle painting great idea!

  4. Your moon unit study is awesome! I featured your moon cake photo and moon posts in my Montessori-Inspired Moon Unit at http://livingmontessorinow.com/2012/07/16/montessori-monday-montessori-inspired-moon-unit/

  5. It looks like you did a ton of activities. I love the Oreo moon phases.

  6. Love all these activities, but I especially like the space rocket snack.

  7. What a great lesson!! I love all the different aspects you have. Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!

  8. Wow! What a wonderful unit! I love how you used the Little Bear book to plan your trip.

  9. What a full filled post! So many different ideas. Love the cake and the banana snack!

  10. Sooooo many ideas - I'm loving the space helmets

  11. What fun you all are having:-) Love the rocket snack. FSPDT

  12. What a great collection of activities! Love the helmets.x

  13. What a great space unit. Reminds me of a lot of things we'd do or plan with the preps at school for their integrated units. Pinning this :)

  14. what awesome space helmets. I'm amazed your kids kept them on. Goblin hates having things on his head. They look really cool

  15. Wow! This post is packed with great ideas! I love the fort /rocketship :)

  16. Wow. Looks like you had a lot of fun. Thanks for linking up with us at Sunday Sweeties. Hope to have you join us again. :-)

  17. We are just about to start a space/astronomy unit so I'm pinning this! So many great ideas. I love the oreo moon phases and the moon cake.

  18. Always so much fun visiting you! Thanks again for linking up with us!

  19. Really amazing! Your kids are going to be super smart, but more importantly they are going to have a great relationship with their mom. Thanks for sharing at Mom's Library!

  20. So inspiring. Thanks for sharing this at our linky. :)

  21. We love this post and so did my readers! Congrats on being one of the most clicked post on Homeschooling on the Cheap this past week. You are being featured on my page and I"m going to share your post to Pinterest.

    The new Homeschooling on the Cheap! link up is alive. I have added a $25 Amazon Giveaway so one person who links up will win money for back-to-school material. I hope you stop in and take a chance. There isn't a limit on how many entries you can get. Just stop in and share.


    Have a great week,

  22. Great resource for homeschooling! I am going to start homeschooling my first son in the fall for Kindergarten. I did preschool from home too and loved it! I will be sure to post a link to your site if I use any of these activities! I found you over on 3 boys and a dog's link up.
    -Robyn from http://tipsfromtheheart.blogspot.com

  23. What amazing moon activities! You guys have had lots of fun by the looks of it!! And I love your moon cake :-) Thanks so much for sharing at Happy lil ❤'s are baking

  24. Awesome! I will be using some of these ideas myself - and definitely loving the coin values as well. Thanks for sharing your activities, this is a great resource for my family and I :)

  25. I just found your site while searching on Pinterest! I just started using MFW Kindergarten for my two boys 4 and 5 yrs. old. This is my first year homeschooling and your site is amazing! Thank you for great ideas for the units. We will be starting the moon unit on Monday!

    1. Yay, thank you for taking the time to comment! I love MFW so far. School days are so much fun around here, and MFW makes it a cinch to plan.

  26. Fun!!!! I want to do school at your house ;)

    We are just getting started on moon...thanks for the link to the moon phases printable!

  27. I’m so glad you linked this post to Discover and Explore. I love the whole moon study, and I'll be featuring your moon cake tomorrow. I'm excited to see what you share for our Day at the Park theme this week.

  28. Thanks so much for sharing at the Discover & Explore linky this week! I'll be highlighting your Oreo moon phases project in our feature post - hoping you'll stop by again and share! http://www.kcedventures.com/blog/hands-on-science-phases-of-the-moon-activities-for-kids

  29. Your Oreo moon phases activity was great! I just did it with my third grade class and they loved it! However, your moon phases are incorrect. The graphic at the top is correct, but your labels are in the wrong order. Just thought I'd let you know!


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