Wild & Woad Early Fall: Week 1

We are celebrating the arrival of fall and the beginning of a new school year! This six week unit focuses on Trees and Our Bodies. The first week we are learning about the different parts of trees and about our skeletal system.


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Week 1

Circle Time (every day)

  • Song: Head and Shoulders
    • We are learning new songs now that Kai really enjoys singing and has begun to pick up the words to songs we sing all the time. Each song is scheduled for two weeks, so that she has plenty of time to pick up the lyrics and hand gestures.
  • PE: Tree Yoga
    • Kai loves Cosmic Kids Yoga and we are working on Tree Pose this week.
  • Calendar: Introduction
    • We are putting up our calendar together and talking about what we use a calendar for.


Outdoor Nature Study: Types of Trees, record in Nature Journal

  • This is our introduction to the nature journal. Kai and I are going to go to the park and look at trees, before picking one to draw. I will also be keeping a nature journal right beside her.

Process Art and Handwork: Nature Paint Brushes

  • For the second half of our park day, we’re going to grab a stick, some leaves, pine needles, or anything else that’s on the ground and paint!


Indoor Nature Study: Parts of Trees

  • We are going to work on vocabulary and learn the parts of trees with three parts cards and then make our own tree from its parts.

Life Skill: Setting the Table/Tea Time

  • Tuesday is tea time! First, Kai is going to set the table. We’re working on putting the utensils in the correct places. Then we are going to have a treat and some lemonade in a tea cup and I will read a book from the book basket.
  • We also do a math activity from Mathematical Reasoning Beginning 1.


Science: Our Bones

Sensory: X-rays on light table

  • We’re combining our science and sensory learning this week to learn about bones. I’ve got some cool x-rays which considering how enthralled Kai was seeing her dad’s dental x-rays  and her own leg bones is probably going to be a hit. I also have three part cards and a magnetic body for us to explore.


Seasonal: Prepare for Autumnal Equinox

  • We are going to do a fall craft, and put up our fall decorations around the house, while talking about how the summer is ending.

Kitchen Skill: Mixing/Bake bread

  • We’re going to make rolls and kolache to stock the freezer. While this Kai is going to do a lot of the mixing, since that’s the skill we’re focusing on (aka not stirring more flour out of the bowl than in it) we will also be measuring, talking about temperature, and rolling up the rolls.


Ancestor Tale: Persephone and Hades

  • Instead of reading a story from a book, Fridays are for oral story telling. I learn a new story every other week to tell Kai, and we act out the story with props. Usually the story gets acted out again and again during playtime and bed time, as Kai tends to really enjoy this kind of story telling.

Painting and Drawing

  • On Fridays, I tell a story and Kai is invited to paint or draw something from it.

If you want to see how it went or follow along, I generally post our school photos to our Instagram either on the same day or soon after.

Specific Materials for Week 1:

See our School Supplies post for general supplies used throughout the year.

Recipe for Marita Rolls

  • 1 cup plus 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 3 packs yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 7 cups flour
  • 4 eggs
  1. Mix 1/2 teaspoon sugar, 3 packs yeast and 1/4 cup warm water together and let sit until yeast grows
  2. Melt 1 cup butter, mix with 1 1/4 cup milk, 1 cup sugar, and 1 teaspoon salt
  3. Mix results of step one and two
  4. Add 3 1/2 cups flour, mix well
  5. Add 4 eggs beaten, stir well
  6. Add 2 1/2 cups four, mix well
  7. Knead until smooth
  8. Put in a warm buttered bowl, cover with dish towel in a warm place, and allow dough to double. (This takes about an hour)
  9. When doubled, punch down and knead lightly, before forming the dough into 2′ balls.
  10. Put dough balls in a well buttered baking pan, leaving an inch between each dough ball.
  11. Cover baking with dish towel and allow dough to double in size (about an hour.)
  12. Bake at 375 for around 15 minutes.
  13. Brush tops of rolls with butter once removed from the over.

Recipe for Kolache

  1. Start with the Marita Roll recipe.
  2. After dough had doubled the first time, instead of forming dough balls, wrap the dough around a 1 1/2 chunk of sausage. You don’t want a lot of dough, remember it’ll double in size and the sausage will act as a heat sink, slowing down baking.
    • I like to use Kiolbassa’s Smoked Beef Sausage, because my husband thinks it makes the kolache taste like the ones you get at the Czech Stop in West, Texas, which were a favorite part of his childhood. But really, any sausage you prefer is fine.
  3. Put kolache in a well buttered baking pan, leaving an inch between each dough ball.
  4. Cover baking with dish towel and allow dough to double in size (about an hour.)
  5. Bake at 375 for around 20 minutes. The size and type of sausage can make cooking time vary pretty wildly, so keep an eye out!
  6. Brush tops of rolls with butter once removed from the over.

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