Friday, February 19, 2016

Silver Lake - Prairie Primer 2016

We read "On the Shores of Silver Lake" in December, so we chose to celebrate Christmas "Little House" style this year. My children were super pleased to be able to have a tree filled with all handmade ornaments and garland this year. Instead of a star we topped the tree with my parasol. The kids made cranberry and popcorn garland, paper twists and button strings to dangle from branches.

We also included three official "Little House" ornaments. it all started with this one. It was given to us by the Shoemaker family (one of five families whom we had gone through the Prairie Primer with three years ago). 

After asking each child what their favorite book was, I secretly ordered them each an ornament. Eventually, I'd like to get them all. Hailey's favorite book was "The Long Winter".
No surprise that Josiah's favorite book is "Farmer Boy". The snowman ornament in the background was made by my Aunt Linda and handpainted on wood. She gave it to me when I was five years old. I treasure all the ornaments she gave me through my growing up years.
My camera accidentally got broken, so the rest of these pics are from a camera phone. The good news is that for Christmas I got an even better camera! Here are the kids standing in front of the tree with their apples that they decorated with cloves just like Ma's sister gave to her back when they were living in Wisconsin.  

We took some time out of our co-op schedule and joined our local homeschool group in carolling at a nursing home. What a precious time and how blessed we were to see the joy on the residents' faces. 
They went gah gah over Rina! This lady was over 100 year old and fell in love with little Rina. 

We had an old fashioned Christmas party! We sang carols and made jingle bells to jingle along with the songs. I even brought the fiddle out for the occasion!
Then we exchanged gifts our kids made for each other. Our family had taken an unused valance and cut it up to make simple aprons. I got three aprons out of one valance! We put a ribbon through where the rod would go to tie it in the back and then I had the kids hem the cut sides of the apron by hand. They were a hit! And we didn't have to buy a thing since we used what we had.
The Clarks hand decorated bags and made a Christmas decoration for everyone.
The Sauers made everyone a handy sewing kit in a canning jar and topped it with a hand-made pin cushion. We use these all the time!

I gave the Ma Jeni and Ma Amanda each a used book of letters written by Laura Ingalls Wilder and a Reminisce magazine. What fun to see the delight on both their faces.

We still had time for a presentations. Hailey did hers on the Homestead Act of 1862.
Josiah taught us about different jobs the railroad workers had on the steam engines of old. It was super interesting!
We had oyster soup with oyster crackers (a particular treat and Christmas tradition for the Ingalls family), mashed sweet potatoes and homemade bread from a local bakery as well as boiled eggs for our dinner. Everything was delicious as usual.

Love that we get to do this unit study again and that the other families are enjoying it just as much as we are. We feel privileged to be able to do this kind thing. Learning so much while having fun. Doesn't get better than that when it comes to getting an education!

God Bless,


Becky L. said...

What fun to study Little House on the Prairie. The gift exchange sounds like fun!! The world was different then but we can learn from the past. Your Christmas tree was lovely. Take care and have a blessed weekend.

magnoliasntea said...

What a fun December you had! I love all the presentations from the Prairie Primer. Learning should be fun, and I have to say you're doing a great job there.

Rina is too adorable! She's seems to be taking it all in in stride.

Have a lovely weekend!

Camille said...

Growing up, I was all over everything "Little House on the Prairie"...these studies would have been perfect! I am sure all the children will have such fond memories of these wonderful studies you have done with them!! I had no idea that there were ornaments representing each of the books. What a great idea to give one to each of your children. And...those aprons...too cute! What a great job you are doing in your homeschool. Hugs to you, my friend. With Love, Camille

Nikki said...

That sounds like sooooo much fun. :) We LOVE Little House here!


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