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8.12.2013

Zucchini Flour


Yes, you now have a purpose for all that zucchini that is growing like crazy in the garden.  Make zucchini powder/flour.  I call it flour because it is ground up to the texture of a multigrain flour.  It can be used like a gluten-free flour.  AMAZING.

 Cut up your zucchini and dehydrate the disks until they are bone dry.  Add the dried zucchini to your blender and blend until a fine powder is formed.  I am using the dry canister for the Vitamix.  I am sure that any food processor/blender would do just fine.  This isn't a hard substance to grind.
 And you are all done! This is a super low carb vegetable flour.  I estimate that it will be about one gram of carbohydrates for one tablespoon.  That is what I arrived at after estimating how many mid sized zucchinis I dehydrated divided by how many tablespoons of powder I came up with.  

Another note, you need lots and lots of zucchini to make a good quantity of zucchini powder.  This jar is full of powder from at least 5 medium sized zucchini. WOW.  So it is only cost effective if you are growing your own, and growing lots.
Well, how do you use this flour????? 
You can add this flour to muffin recipes, pancake batters, and zucchini breads of course.  Simply replace 1/4 cup flour for the zucchini powder. 
Add this powder to smoothies, stews, and soups to thicken them.
It has a bland taste that is easily disguised in the recipe. 

GREAT Homeschool IDEAS for Elementary Kids


I have been collecting homeschool ideas on PINTEREST.  Now is the time to put them to use.  Here are some of my favorite ideas that I will attempt to flesh out and implement.  Here goes...............

Time Line (that you can add to)


I have used this idea for awhile now.  It has been the single best idea I have ever found.  It was in some art book I found years ago.  This is a great way to create a time line that you can continually add to or take away from (but who would want to do that.)

 First hang some craft gage wire in some out of the way location.  I hung mine over the top of our window above the homeschool desk.  

I simply used some old curtain hanging hardware and looped the wire around the ends until I made the wire taunt.  You want a very stiff and taunt line to hang all your information on.  My first line was twine and that totally broke the first week.  The wire also makes it easier to move the cards along.
 Notice I started here with some long green paper with dates on it.  I have the dates from BC to present day.  This just makes it easier to find things quickly as your timeline fills up.  A little organization never hurt anything.

 Here is a close up of some of my cards.  I simply did one hole punch at the top of each card and threaded a paperclip through the hole and hung that on the wire line.  SIMPLE! The paperclip glides along the wire so easily.  It is easy to take the card on and off as you edit.

How can you add some color and interest to your timeline.......simply gather some pictures from old history books, or print pictures from the Internet.  

Add things you study to the time line as you study them.  It is amazing the connections we have made.....wow this artist was painting this famous work during the American Revolution!!!!

As you can see the timeline can be pushed together or spread out according to your needs.  There is so much room for so much information. 


Funny Face Fun

 This was a fun one and doesn't have any real academic purpose but to amuse and provide a break from tedious school work.  I got the idea from valsquietbook.blogspot.com and craftysoccermom.blogspot.com

Here is my rendition of this idea

THE SUPPLIES
*printable magnet paper
*face templates and facial parts
I found a blank face template HERE!
I found some face parts to print out HERE!
I found lots of faces and facial pieces HERE!

These are some things I have collected over the years.  Let the kids color and cut them out.






Print out the face sheets on magnet paper.  You can print out the facial features on magnet paper too or just on heavy cardstock which can be laminated.  I added a small stick on magnet on the back of my laminated facial features.  This cut down on the cost of so much magnet paper.
If I had this to do again I would have printed the larger hair and hat pieces on magnet paper so they stayed on better.

I slipped the large face printouts in plastic sheets so the color wouldn't wear off with use.  These stuck nicely on a magnet board.  You can also use a cookie sheet.

The best part is that you can also just draw faces on the template.  I am sure you can think of some fun renditions.  As the kids do their school work they can earn a part to the face, make it a game.  



Re-usable worksheets

I found this idea at oneshetwoshe.com it was an amazing discovery.  Now I am set for the school year.  Only make one copy or simply put your handwriting book into the plastic pages.  Use a dry erase marker to fill out the page, then erase it and do it again!  This cuts down on paper used and creates more practice when needed. 
 This is also great for those kids who can't handle a wrong mark on their page. They can simply erase it and do it over. 
 These are fun pages. Mazes and dot to dots are great. I am going to use them for my kindergartner to practice hand eye coordination.

Another bunch of ideas from another great blog allourdays.com.  There are lots of ideas for dry erase activities. 

Make a Shape

 \This was a great idea I found on Pinterest from abeecpreschool.blogspot.com. I love the colors and simplicity of the activity itself.  I can see a lot of free play on a magnet board too! 

Things I Bought 



These artist cards were totally worth it.  I want to encourage more art appreciation in our daily lives.  When it comes right down to it I just don't have the time and energy to put into it.  These cards are great.  You are actually playing a game with them and you can focus on one artist each month and keep those cards out in view.  LOVE IT. I bought the impressionist and modern artist card sets.