Friday, October 26, 2007
My son Nour who is eleven and my daughter Muryam who is nine can read write and speak Arabic fluently. Now, is the time to teach my daughter Zaynab who is five and my daughter Faatimah who is three. Even though I am American, I have been blessed to be able to speak, read and write Arabic. I speak formal Arabic and it was my wonderful husband who taught me. I can teach the children myself, until they reach the level of needing the grammar. This is where I have never been able to excel, yet! However, I am not giving up. As far as teaching the young ones, this is how I began. We start about four years of age just recognizing the letters and their sounds. This lovely sister has a great site for manipulatives. I have used many things on this site. After they are able to recognize the letters and the sound of the letters, we began writing the letters and using words that began with each letter. This is what I will concentrate on for most of the year. Arabic has many curves in the letters and this will take a great of practice for the child to master it. Probably towards the end of this year, I will start to introduce the Tashqueel. This is the Fatah, Dumah and Kaserah sound for each letter. Next year, I will start to work on the letters when they are in different positions in the word.
The notebook pictured above is a composition book for early years. I just draw a picture in it of the letter, and she practices writing the letter. Here are letters that I printed out from sister Sumayyah's site. I printed the clip art from Microsoft. I printed two pictures of each sound of a letter. We use it as a memory game or just matching letter sounds. I laminated them before I cut them all up to preserve them longer.
Here is a connect the dots using the Arabic alphabet. I just drew it myself first and then erased the lines.
Here is the finished picture that Zaynab did.
Here is another worksheet that I made Zaynab. I just typed the letters out and then used clip art to match a picture that has the beginning sound. If anyone would like me to email this one, just send me an email, and I will be more than happy to send it.
We are temporarily staying in a condo on the beach. Last week a natural event was taking place. It is called Red Tide. Red Tide is actually algae blooming off of the coast. This type of algae is toxic and kills a great deal of the marine life. The ocean appears to have a red a brown tint to it, hence the name Red Tide. For us humans, the Red Tide was affecting the air. When we went outside, it would cause us to cough and sneeze and would cause irritation to the eyes and nose. As far as swimming in it, we did not. However, the news reports said you could swim, but it may cause a rash. I was not taking my chances with the kids. One thing it did provide for us was a giant interactive science lab. My son Nour needed to observe a water habitat and make a map of it and my daughter, Muryam needed to find lines, shape and geometric patterns in nature.
The waves were rough, so the young sea turtles were washing back up to shore. We found a conservationist saving them. She said they were not affected by the Red Tide, but they were tired from the rough seas. She was collecting them and taking them to a rehabilitation center. She said these were about a year old.
I really love these sea horses and the star fish. Nour just finished a research report on the process of mummification. He learned in his research that these two animal naturally mummify once they are exposed to air. Well, that was enough information for them to start drying the dead ones that they found on the shore. The starfish actually looks like a rubber or plastic toy. It is dark purple and bright orange. I almost did not pick it up because I really thought it was a rubber toy.
Nour had to draw a diagram and label the parts of a water habitat, we took pictures of some of the fish that were along the shore. Then we went home and tried to find their names.
These are Atlantic Spade fish.
This one we were never able to identify. Nour calls it a Monster Fish because it is so weird looking, Subhannallah!
These little fish are called Mullet.
Here is Nour's diagram of his beach habitat.
Friday, October 19, 2007
My five year old is reviewing her alphabet right now. At the same time, we are daily learning the English alphabet along with the Arabic alphabet. We made some things out of salt dough that represented the letter we were working on. The "B" is shaped like a butterfly and the apples are for the Arabic letter "ta". This would be the word "tifaha" for apple. Here is how we did them.
- Salt dough(take any recipe from the internet)
- Acrylic paint
- Assortment of plastic pony beads
- Plastic craft string
- Paint brush
- Clear nail polish
Directions: After we formed the shape we wanted, we poked a hole in the top to run the plastic craft string. We then baked them in the oven until they were very hard. I put it around 300 degrees. Be careful not to burn them. Allow them to cool. Then we painted them with acrylic paint. Paint them on both sides so you can use them as a pendant for the necklace. After they are really dry, I painted them with clear nail polish. This is basically a varnish to preserve them. Once this was dry, both my three year old and my five year old daughter were able to string the beads they wanted on the necklace. It makes a really nice project, and it reminds them of the letter they learned.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
This year, I am having my older children write in a journal every couple of days. Sometimes, I tell them what to write, and sometimes, I let them write anything. They love poetry that rhymes, and most of the time the will write a poem if I did not give them something to write about.
We decided to decorate their journals to make it more personal and fun. Here is how we did it:
- composition notebook
- flat items to place on the book. we used pressed flowers, cards and construction paper. Other suggestions would be: fabric, wrapping paper, stickers, cut up magazine pictures. I do not suggest computer printouts. The ink tends to bleed.
- Modge Podge gloss (you can pick up at any craft store or craft section in Wal-mart)
- paint brush
Brush a coat of Modge Podge on the notebook. Next, we carefully put a piece of construction paper the size of the book. Then, we put another coate of Modge Podge on the top of the paper. Next, we put our flat objects on the top of this. Again, you apply another coat of Modge Podge. Be sure to apply the coats evenly. The Modge Podge is very thick and leaves streaks. Finally. we would continue to put several coats of Modge Podge until we achieved to gloss we liked. Make sure you let the Modge Podge dry in between each coat. If not. it will be a thick goopy mess.