Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Catching Up...Fables - "The Ant and the Grasshopper"

"The Ant and the Grasshopper"

In an attempt to catch up a bit, I am going to be posting some highlights of some of our work in the fall that I neglected to post. I didn't take pictures of everything as time was short, but I am going to make an effort to do better in this new year! So without further ado, here is some of our continuation of a Language Arts Block with fables...

Told the story of the Ant and the Grasshopper (Aesop) using props we had on hand (the moral should not be told - it is left for the child to come to). A tuft of green wool was the grasshopper and a tuft of black was the ant. The random wool was the food being gathered.

We had fun over three days covering the story, drawing it, painting it, and writing about it, learning words and beginning basic parts of speech.

A flower Elena painted...

And my fox & the grapes painting...

A pumpkin scene Charley painted (this was in Oct that we did this block)...

To Be Continued...


  1. Jen, I was so pleased to see this post because I have really missed seeing your lessons, which are such an inspiration! The paintings are beautiful, and what a great idea to use tufts of wool for the insects.
    Did you use a particular resource for your fables block that you would recommend?

  2. Yay!! I am happy to see some of what you are doing! This is slowly preparing me for next year! I need to order the curriculum!

  3. Thank you Cathy & Catherine :) I apologize that I let all of the documentation get away from me and I am going to make it a priority to try to do what I did for Grade 1 last year this 2nd semester.

    Anyway, as far as stories for fables, my first LA block I pulled mainly from Aesop. There are lots of books out there (through your library or free) and even online the stories can be pulled - just google "Aesop's Fables". You put them in your own words, so in this case, I don't think you have to have a specific book to do this part well. However, I do recommend the book by Sieglinde de Francesaca "Teaching with the Fables: A Holistic Approach" if you need ideas on how to bring the fables alive to your children.

    I also like Dorothy Harrer's book, "An English Manual: For the Elementary School". It goes from Grade 2 - Grade 8 and is more detailed than her mathematics manual. It is grammatical and this is typically when grammar is slowly introduced. Eric Fairman begins in grade 1 by using certain colored chalks to represent nouns, verb, adverbs, etc - but the explanations begin in Grade 2.

    HTH and thank you for the encouragement to put the lessons out there (((hugs)))


  4. Hi Jen, Lovely lesson - thank you! I was wondering if you use pastels on your chalkboard drawings? I've just started and my attempts are less than desirable and there is no pop (using Stockmar colour chalk set). I began to wonder if people are using pastels?

  5. Thank you Anonymous. For those drawings (which are less than stellar) I use the chalks from Germany through Paper Scissors Stone. I think it's a mercurius chalk, but it's not labeled on my box or on the website. They are listed at $6.90 and are the square chalks on the right hand side of the page here (currently out of stock): http://www.waldorfsupplies.com/cgi-sys/cgiwrap/psstone/store/agora.cgi?product=Blackboards_and_Chalk&xm=on

    But yes, others do use pastels and I think render a better look to them (like Jenn at Our Little Nature Nest - she's the queen of chalkboard drawings - lol)! I just bought some Sargent Colored Drawing Chalk at amazon that she recommended that I will try out today and share soon. I also am going to make a blackboard as the one I have (from Paper Scissors Stone) is too small and I'm not in love with it, though I love the rounded edges and nice price! HTH and one bit of advice that I'm learning, as I fumble through with my own chalk drawings, is that layers and mixing colors yields a better drawing. It's just a matter of learning how to shade and create shadows and highlights. Kind of similar to using block crayons. A work in progress, for sure!

  6. Thank you so much for sharing! It is such a big help for my work with my daughter.
    Warm wishes,