{Look Alive: Winter Schooling Ideas & Download, Day 1 Look to the Sea} + 15 Hands-on Ideas

Posted on January 30, 2013 at 8:45 AM

October of last year I had posted some of my faves to look alive when the winter homeschooling doldrums hit. I like change. Maybe that sounds like a walking contradiction because I thrive with the 3 R's: routine, regularity, and rhythm. I even like ruts sometimes because they keep us on the homeschool path and act like soft side rails in case we want to spin out of control. The key to successfully homeschooling is knowing when to take a break, sprinkle in some excitement or just knowing when to go to the wild side. I don't read much about wild and untamed homeschooling but I do about free and relaxed homeschooling. Isn't that the same thing? Watch out, one day my post will read: Adventures of the Wild and Savage Homeschoolers. Just so that I don't scare anybody away that is new to my blog, I will keep this blog topic sounding sophisticated, hopefully.

{Look Alive: Winter Schooling Ideas & Download, Day 1 Look to the Sea} When I need inspiration I look to the ocean or sea to inspire me. Did I tell you that I grew up close to the ocean? I have fond memories of walking on the beach even when the weather was cold, collecting shells and afterwards grabbing a hot cup of southern gumbo. It brings calm to my day when I ponder about it.

Creating this series will allow me to share ideas I rounded up to give us a boost when we sag, while at the same time saving these links and ideas here on the blog for later.  And no, I have not forgotten our other series, but I want to fold this one in too in case you are struggling with needing to make a change. I tend to get a lot of attitude pep in my step this time of the year.

One tip that has saved me several bucks over the years is to determine first if it's the curriculum, winter homeschooling doldrums, my attitude or all of it when we feel like blah. Before I make a change, I try new activities, preferably free and see if I can find my rhythm again. I find many times, it is the winter homeschooling blahs.  If you have them now, maybe you can use some of these links and get wild and savage.

First, here are some sites I want to share with you. Too, be sure to download everything you like from these sites because links can change and even if you don't use them until several years down the road, you will have them.

The sites I wanted to focus on today are Independence Seaport Museum. and Project Oceanography  and The Mariners' Museum.

All of these sites have multiple packets, free lesson plans or guides to download. A lot of them with tons of wonderful pictures and printables. I took just a snippet of some of the printables from each site to share with you. Mark these, download and peruse them.

Independence Seaport Museum has teacher packets available for free from grades K - 12. Also check out the free online resource How to Identify Sailing Ships on the site. Awesome.

You better take your time on this site too. Project Oceanography has about 14 Program Packets on the right side of the page. Click on each packet and you will be kept happy sorting through links, lesson plans and downloads.

A snippet from The Mariners' Museum has quite a few projects that are hands-on and in pdf form. This is probably my favorite of the three sites because it has such a treasure trove of things that are easy and hands-on.

Then just so there is no shortage of more fun things to do in case you want to do all hands-on, look at these activities. I have limited how many activities are for preK just because they are so much more easier to find. These ideas are a mix of crafts that will work for two to mom teens.

1. Glass Sea Bottle or you could use plastic. Gorgeous, easy and creative. (via © Bekka Palmer)

2. Make Ocean Colored Soap Cubes using Ice Trays. (via Martha Stewart)

3. Easy Swimming Sock Fish. (via Parents)

4. Ocean Diorama (older child) (via Martha Stewart)

5. Under the Sea Snow Globe (from baby food jars) (via Chickabug)

6. Make an ocean bottle (via Lilla A)

7. Easy Diorama (younger child) (via Make and Takes)

8. Make a Sea Glass Bracelet (older child) (via Martha Stewart)

9. Shells on a Wooden Letter (via Beach Comber)

10. Printable Ocean Diorama (via Holiday Kids Craft) Sometimes you got a kid that doesn't want to color. I understand. So here is a diorama that has pages already colored. Some blank and some colored for options.

11. Windchime (via Sally Lee by the Sea)

12. Ocean Play Dough (via Kids Activities Blog)

13. Make your own Jellyfish Lights (via Kids Activities Blog)

14. Handmade Boat (via Minieco.Co.Uk)

15. Good Ol' Southern Louisiana Gumbo. You know, made the right way with a roux (Via Louisiana Cooking)

Then just a few more free printables to go with topic that I couldn't pass up.

Free 8 x 10 Ocean Printables (via Peonies and Poppyseeds)

Shell Classification Printables for Sorting (via Crafty Classroom)

Free Printable Corral Reef Animal Cards (via Pinay Homeschooler)

Ocean/Beach Word Cards. There are three sizes on this page. (Via PreKinders)

Ocean Unit Study and Worksheets for (via The Happy Housewife)

I think we have the makings for a mini-unit study here. What do you think? Are you now feeling a little sea inspired or a little crabby? Okay, okay, I couldn't resist the corny pun. Download, peruse and enjoy link love today.

You know my fondness for quotes so here is one I find inspiring about the sea....

Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

~John Lubbock~


Hugs and you know I love ya

Categories: Winter Homeschooling, Ocean Unit Study, 5 Days Series on Homeschooling