Monday, June 27, 2011

Magnetic ?

Is it or is it not ?

I made this simple Montessori activity a few months back. (But didn't get a chance to post it) This activity has been Lil Muallimah;s favourite for quite some time. 

I have to admit though, I had to keep her from picking up all the magnetic things in one go, in her excitement. I wanted her to pick up one thing at a time and place it in the corresponding tray. She picked up what she had to do quickly. Alhumdoillah. 

She can't read yet so I made a picture to go with it.:) You may notice that I have written not magnetic instead of non magnetic on the label, at that point of time Lil Muallimah was not getting the word non magnetic and I preferred to write the word she was using, so she could atleast note the phonics


All sorted out

Simple and Fun

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Polymer in Diapers


After seeing a cool experiment / trick on a Science Bob video, we here at Umamah Learning Academy were very keen on finding a diaper. (clean one ofcourse!)

I called my friends with lil ones asking if I could borrow a few diapers in the name of science. Haha... I soon got a few thanks to my generous friends... :):):):):)

Lil Muallim, surprised Abi by doing the experiment exactly as shown in the video. That was sure FUN!!!!

Next up we turned into an experiment of our very the Lil Muallims wanted to know.....How much could the polymers from one diaper absorb?


Once we had the diaper we dissected and shook out all the polymer that we could from it, and collected it in a zipper bag. 
OOps forgot to take a picture of that part ! the polymers look like course powder or SALYT as my Lil Maullim's described it. They wanted to know how much water could they absorb? So we hopped on to step 2.

We put all the polymer from the diaper in a glass and poured some water. In less than a minute all the water was absorbed by the polymers. We kept on pouring water bit by bit till the polymers absorbed and absorbed and fluffed up to almost to the top of the glass.

To prove that all the water had been absorbed we turned the glass upside down, and nothing dropped out of it! We got a lot of aahh's and ooo's on this one.. They found it to be quite unbelievable. Subhanallah!

 We took out the soaked polymers onto a plate and touched and felt them in the hands. They felt like tiny balls of jelly, cold yet not wet on touch! Here's what the fluffed up polymer looked like.

We put the already fluffed up polymers in a big jar. My Lil Muallim's were quite surprised when the when they fluffed up to the top of the jar. At this point the polymer did start feeling wet unlike the stage when they were taken out on the plate! I guess this would be the amount when you scream out.... DIAPER LEAK!!! Hahaahaa!

Next up CREATING A LEAKING DIAPER.......stay tuned!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Dissolving Experiment

Does it Dissolve?

 Lately (on seeing her brothers), Lil Muallimah, has been very keen on coming up with just about anything and claiming it be her 'ESSPERIMENT'. So, when I made the follwoing activity for her as her VERY OWN experiment, she was very happy. Alhumdolillah

The idea just hit me when I walked past my sectional glass tray.

Here's how I set it up. 

Materials used:
  • A placement mat to contain the activity
  • 3 spoons
  • a cup full of water
  • 3 tiny containers holding, sand, lentils and salt in each.

What we did ?

First Lil Muallimah poured out the sand in the first section and poured some water in it.

Then she stirred with the spoon to see if it would dissolve. She wasn't too sure what dissolve meant at this point of time, so I asked  her if the sand was gone or could she still see it.  

Answer: She could still see it so, it doesn't dissolve.

Next up was lentils........

And finally the salt. Sh e was quite surprised when the salt was all GONE, (dissolved in the water)

Lil Muallimah: "I like this 'essperiment' !"... she kept on going back to the first two sections and trying to see if they would dissolve.


Friday, June 24, 2011

Writing Readiness


A few weeks back Lil Muallimah gave me a BIG surprise. She asked if she could write on her mini blackboard while I was cooking. She then showed me:

I have to let you I HAVE NOT done any three letter word lessons with her. She wrote the word and said the sounds, showing OBVIOUS writing readiness. I was completely surprised and asked her if she knew what she wrote? She told the sounds/letters. Then I helped her read the word and praised her for writing CAT all by herslef. Mashallah !

She was pleased and her eyes glowed. Next she drew a cat.

Next she went on to write HAT and draw one too. Mashallah

This was definitely a reminder to me to work with her seriously on reading and writing skills as she READY and WAITING! So look out for our specialized lessons with Lil Muallimah.

Since then she has written these two words again and again and reading them too... :) Mashallah.......

Vocabulary Building


click on the book to look inside
By sheer coincidence I came across the book, Painless Vocabulary being sold by a local homeschooler. I bought it on impulse and am so glad that I did. Alhumdolillah. It's a wonderful resource and activity book for middle schoolers.

After going through the book I have come up with a format on how I intend to cover this book with Lil Muallim # 1, starting today Inshallah! If I make any changes I will update my post here. 

Here's the plan:

The book has 20 chapters and each one introduces you to 15 interesting words. The word study is further divided into groups of 5. That obviously made a bell in my ear..... 5 a day (haha! I am applying the wonderful Math on the Level concept in our vocabulary study). This means that we do 1 chapter a week including the exercises at the end of each one.

So first of all, I wrote down the 15 words on an index cards and divided them in groups of 3, ready for Lil Maullim # 1 to use. 
On the back of the cards, I wrote 3 headings. p.s.: (part of speech), synonyms, antonyms and other word  forms, with an abbreviation of their part of speech, where applicable. This will be required to be filled by Lil Maullim # 1.

Lil Maullim # 1 will be asked to read the short essay...aloud or quietly would be his choice.

He will then pick out the 1st five vocabulary word cards and read them separately and take a mini spelling test of the days 5 words. 

 Point out what part of speech the word belongs to and any synonym or antonym he can think of for that word.

He will go through his thesaurus and fill in the back of the index cards as required. This exercise will surely strengthen his vocabulary  as he will encounter different intensities of the same word and hopefully use them suitably, Inshallah.

Make a sentence with each of the words. 

At the end of the lesson, I hope to go over the sentences with him and discuss if he feels the sentences can be improved in any way or if another word from the synonyms he found would be a better choice according to the context. etc. The method of review of written work is one we have adapted from Fred Lybrands, The Writing Course. 

Details and review of this course will be on another post Inshallah.

Ooooo! I am excited, can't wait for today's lesson. :)


Ok so our 1st lesson went pretty smoothly Alhumdolillah! We did upto step 4. I will ask  Lil Muallim 3 1 to do step 5 later in the day today Inshallah!

Here's how the back of the cards look after being filled...........

Looking forward to the sentences........... :)


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