Letters V and Z for Veterinarian and Zoologist!


Well we made it! Today was our 15th lesson and our FINAL day of summer school. I’m always a little bit excited for the last day and the prospect of nights and mornings free from planning and prep, BUT I’m always more sad than anything else that our fun is up! There has been an unbelievable amount of online chatter this year about “simple summers” and play that is parent free. I think it’s important for readers to know that I agree wholeheartedly that kids should be free to make up their fun, deal with their boredom, create adventures, and annoy one another. However, I also feel that time spent having fun WITH parents AND without is what is most healthy for children. Creating memories together full of educational fun and creativity is something my family cherishes doing and perhaps it is is not for everyone, but it works for us. When summer school ends, we spend the remainder of our summer traveling back East to visit with family and friends. The boys enjoy lazy, unscheduled days of exploration and just hanging out. I truly believe that just like anything else, BALANCE is the key to a healthy and happy life.

We started our final morning just like every other, with circle time and a final shape recognition quiz for them all with the flash cards. We read Zoo-Ach-oooooo!

We finished up our last few pages in our workbooks!

VZ Workbook Work

VT Workbook Pages

We did step 1 of our Zoo Animal Handprints before we headed downstairs for snack so it would be dry by the time we came back up. Before we placed our paint laden hands on the canvas, we laid out where each of my three boys would put their animal and the other details so we made sure to save enough space for each of them. They decided on a snow leopard, an elephant and a monkey. We completed the black sharpie details and vines, sky, and grass after snack. These came out SO cute and I’m thrilled they’re on one canvas (and not three!) and will be hung proudly in their game room!

VZ ZOO Handprint

Our create-your-own-animal snack just goes to show how much their skills and patience have developed since our first summer school three years ago. They spent a surprising amount of time designing and creating their creatures and were only given various bowls of random fruit. I love all three but the elephant and crocodile were amazing!

VZ MYO Snack

After finishing up snack and our hand print paintings, we headed to the kitchen to bake our very own doggie treats. We wanted to give a small token to all those who helped us with summer school and pretty much every person who did, has a dog or two-lol! The boys followed a very simple 3 ingredient recipe (turkey baby food, beef broth, and wheat flour) and I can honestly say, for the first time ever, that I didn’t crave what I was baking as I smelled it cook. This was a particularly stinky and meaty smelling experience. I will say though, that 2 of the 3 boys DID eat a treat just to see what it tasted like. And in case you’re wondering, they said it tasted pretty plain 🙂 All the dogs who received the baggies LOVED them so that’s what’s important!

VT Doggy Treats

After a lunch out at Chipotle (their choosing) to celebrate our last day, we headed to a friend of ours’ veterinarian office for a private behind the scenes tour! The kids had such a blast touring the office and were even able to assist in a mock check up, investigate some x-rays, see a surgical suite, visit with some recuperating patients, and weigh themselves as an entity on a HUGE animal scale. They just thought the whole place was so cool! Once again, three cheers for awesome neighbors and friends!

VT Vet Visit

Have you ever baked doggie treats?



Letters R and T for Rainbows and Tie Dye!


I loved today! It was simple but colorful and fun.

We started the morning off with circle time and shape recognition cards – which I have to say, they know SO well at this point it’s great! We read The Rainbow Goblins (Ul de Rico) first and the amazing illustrations and cute story were a hit. Elmer and the Rainbow (McKee) was a simple story and it told a sweet tale about selflessness. For the early finishers, I also placed Planting a Rainbow (Ehlert) and A Bad Case of the Stripes (Shannon) out on the carpet.

We headed up to the table to work on work books.

RT Workbook Work

RT Workbook Pages

We took a quick break for a colorful and nutritious snack before we started our craft as we knew it may take a while for them to do.

RT Fruit Snack

 I thought I had assembled all of the necessary items to have the kiddos make “tie dye” pillow case covers but it turned out I was missing a key ingredient from the start-lol. I hadn’t read the directions carefully and I just thought once you drew the pictures on the fabric with sharpies, that you sprayed water on the design to make it bleed. Nope. Turns out you spray rubbing alcohol on the sharpie drawings. Doh. SO we all jumped in the car and went to the Walgreens right around the corner. We even found rubbing alcohol that was already in stray bottles-score! We got back home and got started right away. The rubbing alcohol worked really well and I just love how the pillow cases came out! Well done boys.

RT Pillowcase Tie Dye

We stopped in the kitchen before a pre-lunch recess to engage in a short science experiment. We cut the bottoms of white roses and placed them in five color-dyed vases of water. Our hope will be that the dye in the water tints the roses. We shall see!  Note: after 24 hours the edges of the roses became colored. The blue worked best!

RT Dye Roses

For lunch, the kiddos chowed down on some cloud quesadillas and pepper rainbows. Yum!

RT Lunch

Have you tried dying roses or carnations before? Did it work for you?


Letters K and Q for Kings and Queens!

We lived like Royals today and what fun it was! We started off the morning with circle time including shape recognition cards and stories. Like yesterday, we started with what ended up being a quite lengthy book so we only got to one this morning. They really enjoyed Dr. Seuss’ The King’s Stilts. The King’s hard […]

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Letters O and U for Understanding Organic!

Around our home we do our best to eat organic, low processed foods but I wasn’t really sure my boys knew what eating organic foods really meant. They understood that it was healthier to eat organic but I don’t know if they knew exactly how non organic food was treated or how eating local, organic food […]

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Letter L for Lemonade!

“Lemonade, get your Lemonade!” The boys have wanted to do a lemonade stand for what feels like FOREVER (according to them), and although they had a blast today, I don’t think I’ll be hearing requests for another one anytime soon! They certainly learned that it takes hard work to run a business and that not all parts of it are as […]

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Letter J for Jack and the Beanstalk!

We are officially Jack and the Beanstalk experts now! Today was packed with a bunch of fun activities. We started our morning with circle time including shape recognition. We stopped doing a weather word as our mornings have been packed as it is. We read one version of Jack and the Beanstalk (Howe), which was […]

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Letters I and N for Instruments and Notes!

This was one of those lessons I was intimidated to create due to my lack of music theory knowledge. My main goal was to introduce the kids to a few notes and try a few instruments. I struggled, however, to teach even myself any notes well enough to teach them. I reached out to anyone who may know of a […]

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Letters H, P, S and W for Puzz Story: World History

I was unsure of how well this lesson would go as I had never used a Puzz Story product before. The book that came along with this series, World History in Twelve Hops: Tim’s Journey Through Time (Puzz Story) was HUGE and would have been unreasonable to get through in one day. With some tweaking […]

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Letter G for Geocaching!

We had such a great time Letterboxing last year for Letter L that it was a no brainer Letter G should be Geocaching this year! The boys were super excited to try another kind of treasure hunt! We began the day with morning circle, shape cards, and our weather word: Cloud Types. We read the Dr. […]

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Letters F and M for Force and Motion!

We went from one day of science and experiments last week (E for Eggs) to another today to start week two off right! The kids got wind of today’s craft/activity this weekend and were SO excited to work on it-gotta love their enthusiasm for learning! We started off the day with the morning board, our shapes, and today’s weather […]

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