Welcome to this month’s edition of Poppins’ Book Nook – a free monthly book club that invites you to join in by reading a book and doing a related activity that fits into the theme of that month and an opportunity to link up your blog posts. It’s open to anyone – in any age range. I hope you’ll join in.
This month’s theme was the Beyond Our Planet. This is a timely topic for us as we’ve been studying astronomy for the last 2 months in detail. I was excited to try and find a great book to read.
What I really wanted to do was read the book An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth
by Chris Hadfield – the Canadian astronaut who recently lived on the International Space Station. But since there were 40+ holds for all the copies at our local library, I was happy to come across a Plan B – his brand new book: You Are Here.
About the Book
Author: Chris Hadfield
Summary: While living in space aboard the International Space Station, Canadian astronaut, Chris Hadfield, thrilled and amazed the world with his photographs of the Earth from his unique perspective. This book is a collection of many of his favourite, never-shared-before images of our planet from space.
What We Thought:
This book is page after page of awe. The photos are amazing – a completely different way to see Earth. Chris Hadfield has done an outstanding job of combining his photography with both information and fun tidbits. It’s really interesting how he compares the pictures he took to things that we are familiar with in our every day lives: like animals, cereal, dot-to-dot puzzles, teeth x-rays, etc. Because this book is very graphic heavy, it’s enjoyable even for the youngest of readers. I’m very glad I picked up this book. It’s a terrific conversation starter and beautiful way to appreciate our world.
Since September, we’ve been studying astronomy in our homeschool, so this book fit right in with what we’ve been learning about. Although we’ve been constantly busy with crafts and activities throughout this unit, here’s a sampling of some of the things we’ve done:
Painted Suns: I got this activity from a preschool teacher’s blog. It basically involves a circle of paper, blobs of red/yellow/orange paint, some saran wrap and some kid creativity. Thanks to the saran wrap, it’s a pretty mess-free version of fingerpainting!
Marshmallow Constellations: As we studied the stars, we decided to attempt to make our own versions of the popular constellations, like the Big Dipper. The hardest part of this project was not eating all our stars….
Comparing the Earth to the Sun ratio: From one of my science project books, we took a penny outside to represent the Earth, and then used a measuring tape to mark out 40 inches all around it to create the outside edge of the Sun. It was staggering.
Oreo Moon Phases: This was probably the most popular of our learning activities – pulling Oreos apart to make the different phases of the moon. We got the printable worksheet from Teacher Pay Teacher store Home Teacher.
Solar System: Our local craft store had this Styrofoam ball and dowelling stick set all ready to go. We painted the balls and then attached them to the Sun. It was fun and a great visual. (Just… keep Styrofoam balls away from heat… they sort of melt…. not that I know this from personal experience or anything….. ahem).
Learning about space offers so many neat learning opportunities. Some of the things we’ve done other than the ones pictured above were:
- designing a protection system to guard our planet from a gigantic asteroid
- making “asteroids” out of mashed potatoes
- watching a lot of Bill Nye the Science Guy episodes
- spending lots of time on the Hubble Telescope website
- creating a model of the distances from planets to the sun by using toilet paper
- making oil pastel art of the Northern Lights
- harnessing the power of the sun to burn holes in leaves with magnifying glasses
- using Plasticine to create a model sun with all its layers
This unit is so much fun, we might never finish it!
Check out what my other co-hosts were reading and doing this month and link up your fun book!
Enchanted Homeschooling Mom ~ 3 Dinosaurs ~ To the Moon and Back ~ Planet Smarty Pants ~ Farm Fresh Adventures ~ Growing in God’s Grace ~ Chestnut Grove Academy ~ Learning and Growing the Piwi Way ~ The Usual Mayhem~ Preschool Powol Packets ~ Monsters Ed Homeschool Academy ~ Adventures in Mommydom ~Teach Beside Me ~ Life with Moore Babies ~ Kathy’s Cluttered Mind ~ Are We There Yet? ~ Our Crafts N Things ~Hopkins Homeschool ~ ABC Creative Learning ~ Joy Focused Learning ~ P is for Preschooler ~ My Bright Firefly ~A Mommy’s Adventures ~ Inspiring 2 New Hampshire Children ~ World for Learning ~ Ever After in the Woods ~Golden Grasses ~ A glimpse of our life ~ Journey to Excellence ~ Happy Little Homemaker ~ Little Homeschool Blessings ~ Raventhreads ~ Tots and Me ~ As We Walk Along The Road ~ Stir the Wonder ~ For This Season ~Where Imagination Grows ~ The Canadian Homeschooler ~ School Time Snippets ~ Peakle Pie ~ A Moment in our World ~ Every Bed of Roses ~ Finchnwren ~ At Home Where Life Happens ~ The Library Adventure ~ Embracing Destiny ~ Day by Day in our World ~ Our Homeschool Studio ~ A “Peace” of Mind ~ Thou Shall Not Whine ~ SAHM I am ~ Simple Living Mama