## Engineering for Kids: Build a Bridge with Straws and Straight Pins

Last week, one of Aidan’s history lessons was about advancements in bridge building during the 1800′s.  We are reading Landmark History of the American People as part of Sonlight Core E.  I thought it would be fun to do a bridge building challenge to go along with our study of bridges.  I found this idea to build a bridge with straws and straight pins and thought it was worth a try!

The challenge:  Build a bridge out of straws and straight pins that can support the weight of 100 pennies in a small

## Teaching the Concept of Even and Odd Numbers

Today, Aidan (4th grade) was learning about remainders in division, so I thought that it would be a good time to introduce even and odd numbers to Gresham (1st grade).  Gresham has already mastered skip counting by two’s, but we haven’t done skip counting by two starting with the number 1 or discussed the difference between even and odd numbers.  I made a list of the numbers 1-20 on a piece of paper.  We got out our math cubes, and I told Gresham that we were going to pretend that the cubes

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## Math Activity: Candy Survey and Graph

Facebook can be such a useful tool for homeschooling!  Last week, Gresham’s math curriculum, Making Math Meaningful from Cornerstone Curriculum, introduced the concept of a bar graph.  I decided to take it a step further and have him make a graph of favorite candies.  I posted a question on my personal facebook page, and within a few hours, we had more than 60 responses! (And some responded for each member of their family, so we had plenty of data!)  In order to keep the data simple, we gave people four choices and asked which was

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## Patterns for Preschoolers

One great way to build thinking skills in preschoolers is by creating patterns!  This week, I introduced the concept of patterns to Owen (turned 3 in May) for the first time.

We made patterns with objects from nature – leaves from our yard and vase filler stones.  (Rocks that can be found in our area are mostly limestone and sandstone – not round and not as much fun to hold!  Vase filler stones are fun to play with.)

Owen can handle an “AB” pattern like “rock, leaf, rock, leaf.”  Saying the pattern out