One thing we have begun doing early in the morning is bible journaling. My kids love being able to doodle but the most important part is that we are reading the bible together and they draw what they hear that passage telling them. I will share more on journaling in a future post.
My latest obsession are these cuter than cute Tiny Saints! Not only are they beyond adorable, but through a desire to collect them all, my children are reading up on the Saints even more! I always tell them if they want us to buy them a new one, they have to tell us which Saint they want and why and then 3-5 facts about that Saint! It is a wonderful way to motivate kids & they learn as they collect!
The week was full of crafting as we worked on creating new games, one reason that I let the kids help me create the games, is that they are learning without realizing it!
My middle child is tackling the Books of the Bible in his Religion class and what better way to learn than by hands on painting, crafting, playing and creating? I found these sheets at Catholic Icing and printed them out, but I wanted more than just generic flashcards. I went to Michael's and just had a gander up and down every.single.aisle, until I could find what pieces could possible work and once I gathered all of those in my cart, I went with these fat and short popsicle sticks. I needed 3 packs as there are over 70 books in the Catholic Bible, but I was well prepared with 3 kids and plenty of 40% off coupons. A little paint, some scissors, mod podge and we were having fun as we were spending time together.
I started the kids off with 1 game. They have 2 sticks that say New Testament & Old Testament, they must make 2 piles of books by placing each title under the correct location. Once they have done that, they consult their bible to then place them in the correct order. Each time a book is placed in a pile they must say the title and if it is going to the NEW or OLD testament section out loud. When it is time to put them in order they must say the title and section again and then it's order number in that section. Repetition is key to mastering anything and this is perfect! As they have progressed through the game, I hear them creating different ways to play. My youngest likes to take one of the peg Saints he painted for his Altoid shrine and walk the Saint through all of the books of the Bible as though they were stepping stones..
As I mentioned before, we found the perfect case for our Saint Dominos and I let the kids decorate it themselves. They used all of our old MagnifiKids along with our stack of old Family Christian advertisements to cut and create the box, they also used sharpies to color it up bright and pretty.
All of our hunting never found us the right size month stickers, but we did find the numbers, so we had to handwrite the months in. They may not be pretty, but they were made with so much love and all of us working together. These are just the saints for November and December. The kids learned so much while researching the Saint and looking for their feast day to put on the domino.
Because we already have a pretty awesome Saints Bingo game from Illuminated Ink, I decided to use the BINGO calling cards from Shower of Roses for this activity. I printed them out in black and white, so that the kids would be able to color them on their own and in figuring out what colors to use, they had to do research to find out more about the Saint!
We used the Illustrated Book of Saints, along with several other Saint books we own. I will definitely have to share a photo of our Saints shelf in the classroom soon! I try to avoid letting the kids look online, as I find it to be an easy out. They still learn how to use electronics and such, but I want them to be comfortable looking in other places for things.
You can tell from the above photos and these that we started out without painting the dominos and I was not a fan of how they turned out, so we decided to paint the rest first and then color the Saints.
After the Saints were colored, they had to figure out the feast days and write those down and find the correct date sticker. A little modpodge goes a long way with our week of crafting and in the background, we had the rosary playing on Rosary app as we listened, laughed and loved! The idea with this was mainly learning as we crafted and let the kids play with them as they will but it is also working out that they like to put them all in the box, shake it up and then have 2 of them try and guess which Saint the 1 child pulled out as they list some facts about the Saint that they look up or just the feast day. They like to put them in feast day order as well as just look at the ones we have for each month. Many ways to play and learn!
My favorite part of the case the kids decorated is that the Books of the Bible sticks fit in the same one as the Saint dominos and a few tiny peg Saints too!
Our Little Flowers group is still meeting regularly and I wanted to share our travelling Marian shrine and family togetherness box with you! This box consists of mini statues of Mary and St. Therese along with battery operated candles, rosaries and saint prayer cards. I wrapped all of these in a decorative scarf with the idea that the family will take out the statues and candles and cover the box with the scarf and place them on the top to guide over their family for the 2 weeks the box is with them. This gives the family a place to pray and spend time together. In the box are many Catholic games that are both store bought and handmade as well as books to read and activity books, the idea behind this box is to bring the family together for prayer and play along with allowing quiet reflection alone too!
My youngest is also in the process of preparing for First Communion, and will have his First Reconciliation in December! There are so many versions of the Act of Contrition that it can be overwhelming just to search for one. Since my youngest has trouble memorizing too many things at once, I decided to go for this shorter version. Each of my 3 kids has memorized a different version. To help him memorize it, I created this worksheet with the full version and then copies of a fill in the blank version. The first one he will fill out while looking at the written prayer as he works on memorization but the following ones will be worked on with 2 colored pencils. The first one he will attempt to fill out from memory with one color and then fill in the blanks with the other color as he corrects any he got wrong or did not know at all. This has been a daily exercise until memorization finally has caught on!
Enjoy every minute my friends!
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