Flower Fairy WebsitePretty Dancing Columbine: A Letter C Story
Michael and Mrs. Applebee walked only a short distance before they heard the faint piping of a sweet melody. Stopping to listen, Michael could just make out a small purple figure in the distance that looked as if it were sitting amongst a patch of pink stars.
Suddenly a tiny little girl with transparent pink wings and satin slippers leaped out on the path. She was so graceful that Michael couldn't tell whether or not her feet ever touched the ground. She didn't walk, but twirled and whirled in a blur of pink and yellow until she was standing posed before them.
"This is my dancing daughter, the Columbine Fairy," smiled Mrs. Applebee, looking adoringly at her young daughter. She lives here among the Columbine flowers, always dancing to the melody of her elf friend, the Piper."
After listening to her song and admiring her elegant dance, Michael bowed to the fairy in a gesture of thanks as she offered him a lovely pink flower with five pointed spurs.
Without giving an answer, the pretty fairy turned to the purple elf, who immediately handed her a book. Standing straight with the heels of her satin slippers just touching, Columbine told the story of a St. Cecilia. It seemed only appropriate that it would be this graceful fairy who should tell of the saint who so loved music.
Michael realized the story was over when the pink and yellow fairy held the edges of her skirt, pointed the toe of her dainty slipper and spun off down the path. The elf followed closely behind, piping his little tune and Michael watched them disappear in the distance. With that Mrs. Applebee looked to Michael and with a smile announced,
"Come, Michael. I think I see someone else a little way down the path."
Presentation You can use the drawing of St. Cecilia in An Alphabet of Catholic Saints as a visual when telling this story. You may want to copy it to card stock and add it to your child's main lesson or sketch book.
Use the Letter C of St. Cecilia an introduction to letter formation. Have the child trace the C with his or her finger. Practice the Letter C by copying the model drawing. Older children can draw the picture of Cecilia as well. Use the short poem in An Alphabet of Catholic Saints as copywork and place it with the picture in your child's saints notebook.
Use The Song of Columbine Fairy as copywork for the week. And learn the song from the CD.
The Kelly family is adding in learning different signs for each letter they are studying.
(Don't try to do it all--these are options for science and nature study)
- After the story has been told, spend some time on the Flower Fairy site (if you need help navigating the new Flower Fairy site, click here for a tutorial) You can research the botanical information and plant indications and record them in a sketchbook or main lesson book. Or perhaps you would prefer flower storybook paper for letter writing practice and copywork. (An older child can do this independently, but a younger child can give an oral narration which you write or keyboard for him or her.)
- With your older child, you might choose to work through Apologia's Discovering Creation with Botany. Read a section and then ask your child to narrate the information in his main lesson book. Always encourage your child to illustrate his narrations. Work on the experiments that you feel would be most beneficial for your child. Take a picture of the finished project and add it to his main lesson book. The pace at which you move through this book is not as important as the child having an opportunity to really understand the material. Go at your child's pace. I highly recommend the notebooks to go with the botany book, for both older and younger children.
- We've had great success encouraging older children to take their flower narrations well beyond what is provided at the Flower Fairy site. These children are able to truly appreciate the vast varieties of flowers and to to see God's creativity when they consider the lilies of the field.
- For some children, a living books/picture book approach seems to resonate and be more meaningful than any other approach. Consider choosing meaty picture books to teach the same concepts. If you choose to pursue this course of study, here is a science-themed picture book study for this letter:
Storybook Science: C is for Creeks and Ponds
- Paddle to the Sea
- Minn of the Mississippi
- Crawdad Creek
- Box Turtle at Long Pond
- Give Her the River
- Pond Life
- Pond Watching with Ann Morgan
- Salamander Rain: A Lake and Pond Journal
- Crinkleroot's Guide to Animal Habitats
Using the illustration in The Flower Fairy Alphabet Book, ask the child to sketch the The Columbine Fairy in the main lesson book. A younger child can color the The Columbine Fairy in the Flower Fairy Alphabet Coloring Book.
Perhaps on another day the child could model the fairy or flower with modeling beeswax. (Sources of excellent quality modeling beeswax can be found on the right sidebar.)
For this week's picture study, Museum ABC focuses on CAT on the C page.
It's interesting to look carefully at just one segment of the painting in the book. The children can discuss what they think the rest of the painting might look like before you show them the print. The full image of Master of the Story of Joseph's Joseph Interpreting the Dreams of His Fellow Prisoners is here .
Really look at the picture. Soak in the details. Ask your child to narrate with a prompt such as, "Pretend that I am going to the Metropolitan Museum of Art for the first time and want to find this painting. What details could you give me so that I could more easily find it?" Keyboard the narration and ask your child to sketch the work of art. A younger child can copy the painting while an older child can narrate from memory and discover how much detail he remembers by attempting to sketch it from memory. Over the course of this unit, consider collecting the narrations and sketches in a single album and create your own family art history book.
(The goal of Picture Study is to train the eye toward the beautiful. Biographical information about the artist is secondary. Set the work of art as your family computer's wallpaper or screen saver or print the painting on card stock and display it on the refrigerator. After spending time with a picture and really taking the time to look at it, your child will make a connection. There is no need to explain a great deal, especially to a young child. Allow the child to make his own connection with the art. )
An Alphabet of Catholic Saints: St. Cecilia. Learn the rhyme this week.
An Alphabet of Mary: This lovely book is a new addition this year. We're so excited to create a Mary notebook, with the children making a page for every letter, learning titles of Our Lady and how to love her more as we go.
Read about Cherubim in Letters from Heaven. Letters from Heaven offers a scripture verse at the bottom of the page. Look it up with the children and commit it to memory. (Letters from Heaven introduces saints from the Eastern Orthodox tradition. Cherubim are angels in common.) You can download the drawing of the Cherubim here (Download Cherubim.pdf) and use it as a visual when telling this story. You may want to print it on cardstock and add it to the child's main lesson or sketch book. Read the poem of the Cherubim in Letters from Heaven. Older children can read more about them in the first chapter of Ezekiel and narrate a description in their main lesson book. (As always, encourage an illustration to complete the written or oral narration.)
Each week we will be making a Wee Felt Saint or two. Or perhaps you'd prefer to paint saints as Jessica did.
E is for Eucharist: This book is very meaty. Each page is detailed and worth considerable discussion time. C is for .
Read Faith Stories
Across a Dark and Wild Sea (St. Columcille)
Read about these saints in the Loyola Kids Book of Saints:
St. Catherine of Siena Carmelite nuns of Compiegne
St. Celestine V
Read about these heroes in the Loyola Kids Book of Heroes:
Ideas for "C Week:"
Meet the Author: C is for Barbara Cooney
Suggested Books for Read-Alouds and Narrations (These are to be narrated both verbally and artistically. For the younger children it is often fun to keyboard an oral narration for them and then ask the child to illustrate the printed page.)
Charlie Needs a Cloak
Calico the Wonder Horse
If You Give a Mouse a CookieCaps for Sale
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom
The Very Hungry Caterpillar
The Carrot Seed
The Cat in the Hat
Children of the Forest
Fairy Tales, Tall Tales and Hero Tales:
Tale of Swing Low Sweet Chariot
The New Colossus
A Child's Prayer
Poetry Memorization: in Favorite Poems Old and New. Recite daily and make notebook page.
Young children are encouraged always to narrate aloud the stories which have been read to them. Occasionally, keyboard those narrations as the child tells it and allow him or her to illustrate the printed narration.
For more structured writing lessons for children who are in the 3rd-5th grades, IEW Fables, Myths, and Fairytales Writing Lessons dovetail nicely with the Alphabet Path theme.
Serendipi-Tea Time Recipes
Carrots, Celery, and Cucumbers with dip
Crisp Apples with Carmel Sauce
Fun for the Little Ones