March is now upon us, and with its (hopefully) milder weather come thoughts of moving outdoors with our homeschool activities. We especially enjoy doing crafts and experiments out in the sunshine (so much easier to clean up), and like having the space to spread out.
During the colder months we rely on visiting homeschool days that often include a hands-on project to take home. We’ve put together many items over the years that fit in with the Theme of the Day, including Pink Tea invitations (Votes for Women events), canvas teepees (First Nations studies), paper mache robots, and popsicle stick forts (learning about the voyageurs).
One of our favorite spots for doing crafts year-round is the Telus World of Science in Edmonton, Alberta. A short drive from home, this center has high quality, permanent displays along with traveling displays that they host, usually two different ones a year. We’ve learned about finding clues with Sherlock Holmes, the Science Behind Pixar, the aerodynamics of Angry Birds, as well as how pop culture has had an impact on the real experiments and scientific advances of our time. Their next traveling exhibit will be “Myth Busters,” with 60 artifacts from the television program and several hands-on activities to help kids learn all about different scientific practices.
By now you are likely asking yourself what any of this has to do with crafting and National Craft Month. Well, you see, the Telus World of Science is also home to the Science Garage. This hands-on creative space is one of EJ’s favorites. He looks forward to finishing his day there on every one of our visits. Besides being a terrific place to run off steam and stretch his legs with the Freedom Climber Wall and the Kinetic Dance Floor, The Workshop is a big attraction for him.
This makerspace is where kids can let their imaginations run free with programming provided by the Center’s science team. The space is well stocked with tools from DeWalt, and every kind of recycled material kids will need to complete the day’s project. Over the years we’ve built cardboard bobsleds (during the Winter Olympics), string art flags (for Canada’s 150th birthday), posters, race cars, and paper quill greeting cards (near Mother’s Day). And kids don’t just learn how to make the individual crafts; they also learn how to handle tools like soldering irons, drills, and saws. These are very practical and valuable skills, I must say.
Kimberley Linkletter – After a 20-plus year career in politics and government, my life took a turn and I became a homeschooling gramma to our energetic and adventurous grandson EJ. There is nothing we like better than loading up our car and hitting the road to see what we can see. As my girls have always said, “Mom says everywhere is on the way to somewhere,” so we love to take detours along our route. You find some of the best places that way!
We keep busy reviewing homeschool products, visiting small town (and not so small town) diners and cafes, museums, National Parks, hotels, and campgrounds.
EJ and I (Miss Kimmy to my friends) love to share our adventures with you here on Vintage Blue Suitcase.