Our First Project Day

Last Friday, we had our very first “Project Day.” (It was what I called it for lack of a better term.  Not that I had to call it anything in particular, but the kids like that.)  I had been thinking about a Project Day for quite some time.  I wanted a day either once a week or once every other week that looked considerably different from our normal days.  I wanted a day that was filled with all of the kinds of things that it’s easy to let slip by in favor of getting a math lesson done or finding the subject and predicate in a whole mess of sentences.

Last week we had a long week, and I decided that Friday would be a perfect time to start these Project Days.  My idea was that Project Day would occur every other week (or thereabouts) and would look different each time.  I figured Project Days would include things like 4-H projects (once we start back up on them), Legos, arts and crafts, non-traditional field trips, life skills, and whatever else I might decide to do.  I also wanted to have time for the kids to pick their own projects.

For our first Project Day, we focused mostly on arts and crafts.

All of the kids worked on Lego projects for a while.  Noah said, “This will be good, because we need to work on our building skills.”

Lego Car

Each of the children then created some peg people.  I was surprised that Noah, being the oldest, was one of the most excited about decorating these.  I think I’ll get more wooden peg people for another project day, and we might get out ribbon to “dress” them.  Maybe we’ll even paint some of the peg people too!  For this week, we just did markers (as well as some Stickles).  The kids also decorated some wooden shapes.

Wooden Peg People
Molly also decided to use some of my Stickles to make a picture of her and her friend, Caroline.

At some point, the boys made everyone lunch.  They don’t usually do that, so it was a great thing to do on Project Day, for sure!

They then all worked on Shrinky Dinks, although the ones I had in my craft room weren’t like the ones I remembered from childhood.  (They were a mostly opaque sheet that we had to use permanent marker on.  Thank goodness I have an assortment of colors of Sharpie markers.)  They hadn’t used Shrinky Dinks before, so they weren’t so sure that they believed my premise that these drawings would shrink.

They made their designs (here are Noah and Jack’s):

We cut out the shapes, and their skepticism grew.  They were shocked watching throw the window in the oven door as their creations shrank down.  Here are Molly’s finished designs (with a penny to show scale):

While the kids were working, I did most of their activities with them.  I also took some time while they were working on projects to work on my Jesse Tree swap ornaments.  Here is my prototype (I am going to change at least one thing on the finished ornaments, but otherwise, I think this is what my ornaments will look like for Genesis 1:1):

During our Project Day, I got lots of kudos from the kids.  At one point, Noah said, “Mom – you know how to make school so much fun!”

It’s safe to say that Project Day will be repeated, especially when we start working on 4-H again!  I can’t wait to see how this enhances our homeschooling!

This post is linked to Works for Me Wednesday.

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Comments

  1. WoolWytch says

    Awesome – learning to make things helps develop so many different facets of their minds, and cognitive ability. I bet they had so much fun too!

  2. says

    I love the Jesse Tree ornament. I need to start working on making ornaments. I’ve been meaning to make my girls a set since the Spring. I guess I better get moving!

  3. says

    So cute, I love his responses! For a few weeks we did projects on Saturdays while Dad was at work . It’s a busy time of year and the kids hate that he’s gone on those saturdays, so the projects helped distract them. I was the one who had to let go the M-F school mindset, and it worked out so much better.
    I’d like to start some sewing projects with my oldest, and I’m thinking Friday afternoons might be a good time for that too. Can’t wait to see what else you guys do!

    • Angie says

      @Michelle,

      We also often get caught up in the Monday through Friday mindset. It seems like the only days I count as school that aren’t M – F are when we go on a field trip on the weekend.

  4. says

    Fabulous idea! I adore your Jesse tree ornament too! I try to have Fridays be our art day and lighter school day but since we’ve been missing one day of school week for many different reasons, we’ve been needing to forego our Friday light day which I miss. This week, though, we are having a light book-work day Thursday while we work on lots of projects to get ready for our church’s Trunk or Treat day on Saturday. I’m looking forward to Thursday.

    Samantha

  5. says

    Isn’t is rewarding when your children say, “This was fun!”
    I love your project day idea. We do these too. I often call them wrap-up days because it’s all the leftovers that didn’t get done. Right now I’ve got a science experiment in that “pile.”

  6. says

    How fun! We call this “handicrafts” in our school and do them every other week, too. Last week we did corn husk dolls, something I’ve never done before. Something about working with the hands invigorates the kids – from the oldest to the youngest! Thanks for sharing your delightful day.
    Godspeed,
    Nancy

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