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Hi! My name is May. I've been blogging since 2009.

1950s housewife to the bone.

I'm a lifelong foodie, raised in restaurant kitchens and with Sunday dinners at my grandmother's.

I homeschool my three children in Los Angeles with my husband of 17 years.

I drink tea when I knit and coffee when I do everything else.







Periodic Table Battleship

Homeschooling

What a neat idea this is! I believe original credit for this game should go to Karyn over at Teach Beside Me. There are a lot of cute and fun educational ideas in the subscriber section of her blog, totally worth a look!

When I first came across this idea, it was just a photo someone had shared on my Facebook with no instructions. So when we tried it out, I used my favorite printable of the periodic table we have been using. It involved coloring in every square and I think that’s great practice for the kids (& me too) so that’s what we did.

Essentially, all you need are four laminated copies of the periodic table, 2 file folders, a paper clip and dry erase markers. Just attach the two file folders together at the top with the paperclip, and secure two of the periodic tables there as well. The other two periodic tables just sit on the open part of the file folder.

There are official rules to this game, you know, like in regular Battleship. When playing with younger children, you can be a little looser with the rules. I just let the kids circle an equal number of ‘battleships’ of equal sizes. So to start, they each went with three battleships, one was 2 x 1, one was 2 x 3 and one was 2 x 2. If you’ve never played before, you mark where your own battleships are on the periodic table that’s laying on the open part of the file folder. Then you guess where the other person’s battleships are by calling out elements. Each time your guess ‘hits’ or ‘misses’ the other person’s battleships, you mark it on the other table on your side. Whoever locates and ‘sinks’ all the other people’s battleships, wins!

The periodic table is something that is usually introduced when kids are in 3rd grade or older. You can introduce it sooner with games like this! You can play the game the way it was intended, or have younger kids just pick a few elements and guess! There are lots of other fun games to play to engage younger kids in learning the periodic table, you just have to get creative – and have a look around!

Here’s a picture of the version we made!

Karyn’s original version is great! The printables are on her subscriber page and there are some details on her blog over here – http://teachbesideme.com/periodic-table-battleship/

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The City Mice Move to the Country

Churchy, Kids, Marriage, Small Town

Where have I been for the last six weeks? I was moving out of my cute old house in the city and into my lovely new house in the middle of nowhere. Well, not nowhere really – cottage country. Most of our new neighbours are seasonal, though there are a few other tough cookies who live here year round. ‘Cottage country’ in Ontario can mean different things, depending on where you are. In our little town (so small the population is actually added to the population of all the other towns that make up the county – and it’s still just about as many people as our old neighbourhood in Toronto), there are two pockets. One is very ‘small town’ where the houses all look the way you’d expect them to look in a 50s flick, you can walk to the post office, grocery and church. The other pocket (our pocket) is lake front, where all the snazzy cottages are, we are removed from the actual town by a nice long road no one would ever bother driving down.

I will post more photos in the coming days, but for now here is the outside of our sweet country house.

The feeling in this little pocket is very neighbourhoody, everyone is super polite and goes for bike rides in the afternoon and walks after dinner – really, so many people here do this! Our house specifically is surrounded by trees and off the main road by a tiny bit so it’s not even visible when driving by, but it’s easy to spot once you know it’s there. When we’re waiting for the school bus in the mornings, and when the littlest one and I are waiting for the other two to hop off the bus in the afternoons, we have to walk to the end of the driveway, and that’s when we see most of our neighbours. It’s so quaint it hardly even seems real somedays!

This week, I’m baking up this month’s Daring Baker challenge and I will bring some to a few of our closest neighbours to formally introduce ourselves. We haven’t even been to church yet!! When I deliver cookies on our street, I will take photos of the water and the view from our driveway!

We have, however, been to the Meet the Staff BBQ at the wee one’s school and it was a lot of fun. The entire school has 41 kids. Unless you’re from a town as tiny as this one, that number should be alarming. I am amazed at the way this school functions, I love it. First of all, it has a gym about a big as the one I grew up with and my school had 800 kids in it! The student population is divided into three ‘spirit teams’ and each member of each team racks up points by being a ‘good person’! I almost fell over when this was explained to me, essentially the staff at school ‘catches’ the kids being good and gives them points for it, (helping out a smaller kid without anyone asking you to, picking up after yourself, bringing in a litterless lunch…) The team with the most points each term gets a special treat, and the one with the most points overall wins a special class party in June. So sweet!

This is wee one #2′s class room. She is one of 6 students in this class (!), it’s a split JK/SK and her teacher is adorable! Hilariously, she reminds me of me because she’s silly but hyper organized. Remind you of anyone? ;)

Wee one #1 has the biggest class in the whole school – 15 kids! I am extremely happy about this class size for him because the one on one time is unmatched! It’s the same as many standard tutoring places.

All that matters to me about the school really is that it’s safe, we all feel comfortable and the kids are happy – and boy are the kids happy. I feel so blessed that we went from what we all felt was a good school situation to an even better school situation! Phew! I was so nervous for them I could hardly think about anything else. I was nervous about getting involved with the parent council as well, since you never really know what the other moms are going to be like but they’re all so warm and inviting. I just have to get my criminal background check done this week and bring it in!

I’ve said this since our second or third day here – I feel certain that we are supposed to be here. Everything about this house feels right and while of course there are things for all of us to adjust to, those things are minor in comparison to all the good around us.

Sidebar; I’ve been sending letters and cards to my friends and (hooray) a few of them are being amazing at writing back! I think everyone knows how much I love mail (postcards, letters & packages, no bills please) so I’m very, very happy to the amassing a collection of letters and postcards (my friend Jade Van Rando went on a road trip across Canada this summer with her fiancee, and they sent me a postcard from every province and Gill & Andrew went to Ireland recently and sent a really cute one!) Soon, I will need a cute box to keep them all in. <3

I have also been looking for a group to join on Good Morning Girls, fingers crossed I found one this evening! Essentially, these groups are formed from like minded women to check in with each other about their Bible study and prayer. I am very fortunate that three very close girlfriends, my sister and I send group emails to each other all the time, but there are only two of us who are churchy and that sort of convo doesn’t come up much in our emails. :P If you’d like to join / help form a group like this, let me know!

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