Funschooling News #8

Hi! Welcome to Funschooling News!


Are you looking for some great family-friendly activities that will make your week a little more interesting? Then you’ve come to the right place!

 Be sure to scroll all the way down to the Special Days section where you’ll find a fun activity to do or an interesting topic to learn about each day of the week. 


Paper Airplanes

Paper, IMHO, is one of the most useful and versatile items in the home, and as a bonus, it comes in all sorts of colors, shapes, and sizes. Our favorite type of paper is recycled paper and we especially like giving junk mail a new lease on life. One of the things we enjoy using junk mail for is to make paper airplanes that can do all kinds of cool tricks.

If you click on the link below, you’ll find sites for a variety of ways to fold paper planes, tips for making and flying them, and info about world record holders. 

For this activity, you will need: Paper Optional: A printer, measuring tape, crayons, paper clip, glue, a skewer, and a pencil. 

I hope something in this post brings a smile to your face!

Homeschool Humor


Still Learning Something New: Homeschool Humor
Here’s a peek at what you’ll find…

Funschooling Press: On Sale This Week

Beach-Themed Word Games are 25% off this week! 
is on sale for 25% off this week!


Get your copy today!

Funschooling Videos

Paper Planes

If you are looking for some really cool engineering projects, check out the first three paper airplane videos. Then try your hand at drawing an optical illusion. Look for the link for the fun math game: Hex Flood below the videos.

How To Fold A Paper Airplane That Flies Far. (Full HD)


How to fold the world record paper airplane


How to Fold Five Incredible Paper Airplanes | WIRED


Drawing a Hole – Anamorphic Illusion

Try this fun math game out! Dr. Mike’s: Hex Flood.

Special Days & Holidays Aug 19-25


Betty Jo, of Still Learning Something New, has posted the newest version of her August 2018 Special Days Calendar. It has a long list of famous birthdays, historical events, interesting days, monthly event and food themes, and more. 
Betty Jo and I have created a Special Days Companion filled with 100 activities you can do as a family during the month of August. To find out more about this wonderful product, click here.

Here are a few of the things on her list and some helpful activities and links:

August is Crayon Collection month. Gather up your old crayons and learn or figure out some ways to recycle them. Click on the link for some great ideas!

🛫August 19Inventor Orville Wright Born 1867 – Learn about the Wright Brothers. Watch the documentary: Wright Brothers Fathers Of Aviation Biography Documentary Films.

August 20Radio Day – 
Learn about the history of the radio, then make your own radio.

🍍August 21Hawaii Statehood 1959 –  Find out more about the Great State of Hawaii and learn how to play a Ukulele.

August 22Eat A Peach Day – Find out how healthy peaches are. Go Peach picking and preserve some to enjoy at a later date! Learn where you can pick your own fresh fruits and veggies in your state here.


⛵August 23Ride the Wind Day – Play with the wind! There are a lot of fun ways to play with the wind such as to: Flying Paper airplanes and kites, and blow bubbles.


August 24Pluto Demoted 2006 – Learn about Pluto and take some time to watch: 
First Mission to Pluto – Documentary 2018 HD

🦇August 25Bat Weekend begins (last full weekend) – Learn about bats! Play a fun sound game too. More Bat resources can be found here on this blog.

Thank you for stopping by, please feel free to share this post with others!
Have a wonderful week!

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Note: If this, or any other post on Funschooling and Recreational Learning, has inspired you in a positive way, or you have featured it in a blog post, please comment and link back to where it can be found! Thank you!


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Ways To Learn About History….Without A Textbook

History can be one of the most interesting and exciting subjects you can learn about… but textbooks tend to deliver information in the dullest ways possible!
Here are some interesting ways to learn about history that are much more true to life.

Museums – There are many different types of museums that can be visited in person and virtually. Check for art, science, historical, and specialty museums. Look into getting a yearly membership so you can visit them all as often as you like. See if you can arrange for a tour.

Go To A Reenactment – Check out your community calendar for locations, dates, and times of local reenactments and plan a trip to those further away.

Visit An Old Structure – There are beautiful old buildings with amazing architecture to see in historic districts, and old period houses that have been preserved. Do a search or ask someone what’s available in your area.

Visit A House Museum In Your Area – Some areas have an old house or building you can visit for free or a low fee. It’s like stepping back into history because it often looks like it did when the place was lived in. If there is a tour available, take it so you can learn more about it.

Check Out Old Ruins – Is there an old farm or plantation you can visit in your area? Many places are turned into parks and preserves. Watch for archaeological discoveries in your area too. Plan a trip to a ruin of interest.

Visit An Old Cemetery – Walk through an old cemetery respectfully to see how long people lived.

Visit A Monument – Make a plan to visit a local monument and use the library or the Internet to learn about the history behind it. Take a tour, read books, and websites, and watch documentaries, etc..

Watch A Documentary – Many modern documentaries are very interesting and informative. Check local listings and YouTube.

Talk To Someone Older Than You – Ask questions about days gone by. Talk to a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, or visit a nursing home to talk to someone older.

Listen To A Historical Storyteller – Some people tell stories about the good old days, take time to listen to what they have to say and the way they say or sing it. Libraries often bring people in, check your library to see if they have anything scheduled or make a suggestion. Check YouTube for videos that feature storytellers.

Do A Craft From An Era Of Interest – A lot can be learned about a culture via their crafts and traditions. Choose a time period and look for some craft ideas. Make traditional foods too!

Watch An Old Movie – Old black and white movies are easy to come by these days – check your local listings for programming info… Observe the language used, the way they dress, how people lived and interacted with each other, the music being played… of course you can watch something in color as well! What was life like without cell-phones, computers, and cars??? Ask someone who can explain things to you so you can gain a better understanding of the historical value of what you are seeing.

Read An Biography or An Autobiography – Reading a historical perspective can help you take a step back in time and take you to a place you wouldn’t normally be able to go. Look for graphic novels too!

Take A Step Back In Time – Visit a pioneer settlement (museum), historical village, castle, an old fort, become part of a reenactment, or go to a renaissance fair/festival etc..


Visit An Old Fort, Battleground, Landmark, etc. – Visit local sites or plan something in another state.

Go to the library, book store, or use the internet to learn about histo
rical places such as castles, ancient buildings, people, inventors, and other fascinating things.


Keep in mind that there are a lot of virtual tours of places, people, and things of interest you can check out on the Internet. 
Bring your camera with you so you can capture the things you discover.

Funschooling and Recreational Learning has a quite a few resources pages relating to history. I hope you’ll check some of them out!

Thank you for stopping by!
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Note: If this, or any other post on Funschooling and Recreational Learning, has inspired you in a positive way, or you have featured it in a blog post, please comment and link back to where it can be found! Thank you!


Dictionaries



This week is about dictionaries:

Day #1: Get the week started by building your vocabulary.

Day #2Alphabetize Your Family Members

Day #3Dictionary Creators

Day #4: Types of Dictionaries

Day #5: Words Within Words


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Drinking Straws


Bon Appétit: A Brief History of the Straw – This article talks about:

  • How the first drinking straw was made.
  • How the bendable straw came to be.
  •  How they went from paper to plastic.
  • Krazy Straws.
  • Modern straw designs and uses. 
  • How we’ve gone back to paper straws and why.


The Atlantic: The Amazing History and the Strange Invention of the Bendy Straw – The story of the how the bendable straw was invented.

Smithsonian: Inventions – The Straight Truth About the Flexible Drinking Straw – How the first flexible drinking straw was invented.

Wikipedia: Drinking Straw – History of drinking straws and their modern uses. Also types of straws.


Howstuffworks: How are Bendy Straws Made? – The first page talks about what straws have been made up of, click on the word “NEXT” under the video and the second page will tell you what straws are made of now and how they are made. The third section is an author’s note.

The Inventors.org: Drinking Straws – This short article starts with the history of the drinking straw and ends with other things spiral wound tubing lead to.


Days of the Year: Drinking Straw Day – January 3rd of each year is drinking straw day. Learn about the history of drinking straw day and how to celebrate the day. Try a recipe for Mint Julep – an adult drink. A kid-friendly mint julep recipe can be found on Twice As Good Show.com

NASA: Rockets – Rocket Pinwheel – This cool experiment requires a straw, balloon, pencil, a sewing pin, and tape to make it. Go to the site for full instructions.


Manufacturing.net: Va Plant Produces 4B Drinking Straws Annually – Information about a plant that makes more then 4 billion straws a year.

Going Plastic Straw Free


Seattle Time: The last straw? Seattle will say goodbye to plastic straws, utensils with upcoming ban – News article about a new ban.

Washington Post: A campaign to eliminate plastic straws is sucking in thousands of converts – News article about a young man on a campaign to eliminate plastic drinking straws.

Straw-Free.org – Find out what you can do to help the campaign and go straw-free.


Strawless Ocean.org – Find out who’s going straw free and what you can do to help.

Engineering.com: Engineers Develop Edible Straws to Combat Plastic Pollution – New developments in drinking straws that are plastic free.

One of the ways to help the straw-free movement is to reuse the plastic straws that you do have in positive ways such as in art projects, science experiments and math activities. Below, you will find videos that show you fun ways to reuse plastic straws. Once you are done with them, clean them out well, and get creative!
Straws can be cut down and melted, and used in some cool ways, as you’ll see in the selected videos.
If you like to use straws, purchase reusable straws in stores and online.
Once your plastic straws are gone, make straws from other materials, as show in the videos below.


Videos

HowStuffWorks: Stuff of Genius: Joseph Friedman: The Flexible StrawThis 1:27 minute video tells you about the inventor of the bendy straw.

YouTube: Drinking Straw PlaylistThis playlist includes information about the history of drinking straws, and fun activities you can do with them such as science experiments, art projects, and math activities.
Some videos will require adult supervision to use a lighter, hot glue gun, or cutting tool.
Here’s one of the video from the list…


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Dragons

Wikipedia: Dragon – Information about this mythical creature, including animals that may have inspired dragons, plus European and Asian dragons. Also:
Dragons in Greek Mythology
Japanese Dragon
List of Dragons in Mythology & Folklore

Smithsonian Magazine: Where Did Dragons Come From – Article talks about the possible origins of dragons.


LiveScience: Are Dragons Real? Facts About Dragons – Article: The history of dragons from a cultural and religious perspective.


American Museum of Natural History: Natural History of Dragons:

Article: How dragons have been described through the ages.

Draconika: Dragons: The History of Dragons – How and where dragons showed up in history.


Mythology Wiki: Dragon – This is a Fandom page with information about dragons: How they are portrayed, attributes, and types. 


The Guardian: Top 10 Dragons in Fiction – Pictures and information about the current top 10 dragons in fiction.


Dragon Tales


World of Tales: Here are some of the folktales that can be found on the site, use the search icon (the magnifying glass in the lower left-hand corner of the page) to look for more dragon related tales from around the world.
The Four Dragons Asian Folktale
The Dragon-Princess – Chinese Folktale
The Dragon’s Strength – The Story of the Youngest Prince Who Killed the Sparrow  – Slavic Folktale
The Boy and the Dragon – Canadian folktale
The Dragon’s Tail – German Folktale

Lit2Go: Stories from Around the World: “THE DRAGON AND THE PRINCE” (Serbia)– This story has a 16 minute audio file you can listen to or read along with. It can be downloaded as well. 

Storyberries: Dragons – This site offers 8 stories about dragons that are kid friendly.

Sam & The Dragon – An illustrated story about Sam and a dragon. (IMHO cute!😉)


How to Draw Dragons
Each site offers step by step instructions.

How 2 Draw Animals: Dragon – This is an advanced drawing.

WikiHow: The 4 Best Ways to Draw a Dragon A mix of advanced and easy drawing methods.


HelloKids: How To Draw Dragons for KidsAn easy to draw dragon.


Dragoart: Dragons – Site offers quite a few different types of dragon to learn how to draw, easy to advanced.

Videos

YouTube: Dragons Playlist – This list includes information about dragons and dragon activities such as: Origami projects, puppets, and drawing tutorials.
Here’s one of the videos in the list…

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Note: If this, or any other post on Funschooling and Recreational Learning, has inspired you in a positive way, or you have featured it in a blog post, please comment and link back to where it can be found! Thank you!


Types of Calendars

Article & Information About Calendars


Timely: The Importance of Calendars – This article talks about some of the import reasons communities and individuals should keep calendars, along with the benefits.


Wikipedia: Calendars – Offers historical information about calendars.

Egyptian Calendar
Mayan Calendar &
List of Calendars – Lists over 80 types of calendars.

Holidappy: Birth Symbols – Each month has its own bird, flower, tree, myth, etc. find out what they mean.


Ducksters: Today In History – Find out what happened today in history and scroll down to the bottom to find out about the rest of the month. Click on a month, then you’ll find out: That month’s birthstone, flower name, name meaning, most recognized holidays for that month, how to say that month’s name in different languages, and fun facts, plus you’ll see a calendar of days. Each day will tell you a few things that happened on that day, and the year it happened.


Lifehack.org: The Evolution of the Calendar: How to Use a Calendar Today – This article talks about how calendar use has changed over the years and how technology has helped those changes along.


The New York Times: Paper Calendars Endure Despite the Digital Age – This article discusses trends in paper and digital calendar usage.


Make Use Of.com: Why Paper Planners Are Relevant in the Age of Smartphone Calendar Apps – Article talks about the positive points of both digital and paper calendars.


Calendars That Feature: Events, Wacky Holidays, & Other Special Days

National Day Calendar – Main page – Find out what the day’s holidays, birthdays and events are and look at the whole month at a glance.

Time & Date.com: Fun Holidays – Site offers a list of fun, wacky & trivial holidays. Click on the month you’re most interested in.


Homefires: Monthly Learning Calendar – This calendar changes from month to month automatically to keep you updated on interesting things to learn about.


Apples 4 The Teacher: Holidays – Scroll down to the month you want to look at to find out what special days there are for the month.


Holiday Insights: Holidays – Daily holidays for each month. Click on the month you want to view. This site offers food days as well.


On This Day: Click on the area you want to know more about each day. Search by name, month, day, or event, birth, wedding, and death.


Still Learning Something New: Special Days Calendars – ArchiveYou’ll get a nice long list of important days that that month offers, featured themes (ex: National Pizza Month), and featured food items/themes for that month.


The Nibbler: American Food Holidays: Index of food holidays by month.


Cultural Calendars

Chinese

National University of Singapore:  Chinese Calendar (PDF) also Calendars in Singapore covers: The Islamic Calendar, Indian Calendar, and other information.

University Washington Dept of Education: The Chinese Zodiac – This informative site gives information about the Chinese Zodiac.

Mayan

WebExhibits: Calendars Through The AgesThe Mayan CalendarInformation about the history of the Mayan calendar and how it works.
NOTE: If you click on the link for Calendars Through The Ages link, you will connect with other types of calendars that are in use and not in use to learn about.

Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian: Living Maya Time: The Calendar System – Explains the Haab cycle.

Native American

Akta Lakota Museum & Cultural Center: The Lakota Moon CalendarFind out how the moon played an important roll in keeping time and the name and meaning for each moon. 

Crystallinks.com: Native American Calendars –Article offers information about how some Native American tribes kept track of days, months, and years.

Native Net: Native American Calendar – Learn the various names for each month’s moon.

Other Calendars

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center: Eclipse: Calendars – Includes: Intro, Gregorian, Hebrew, Islamic, Indian, Chinese, and Julian Calendars

Calendar Zone: Cultural Calendars – Many of the links on this site are not working but the information about the dozens of different types of calendars of the world from various cultures offers many more choices and learning directions that can be studied.

Videos

YouTube: Calendars Playlist – Learn how the modern calendar evolved over the centuries. Here are one of the informative videos in the list.


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Note: If this, or any other post on Funschooling and Recreational Learning, has inspired you in a positive way, or you have featured it in a blog post, please comment and link back to where it can be found! Thank you!


Candle Resource Page

History of Candles and Candle Making

Candles.org: History of Candles – Article includes info about: Early Wicked Candles, Middle Ages, Colonial Times, 19th Century Advances, The 20th Century, and Today’s Candles.

Wikipedia: History of Candle Making – Antiquity (What candles were made from), Middle Ages, and Modern Era.

History of Lighting: History of Candles – Development and History of Candle Making – Article includes information about what candles were made with and how candles were used as a timing device.

Candle Making Projects


Family Education: Candle Making – Follow these simple instructions to learn how to make your own candles with your kids.

Martha Stewart: Candle Crafts – Scroll through the suggested candle crafts with the arrows.

She Knows: 12 DIY Projects for Candles – Site offers some ways to use candles as decorative lighting.

Good House Keeping: 7 Crafty Ways to Dress Up Candles – Scroll through using the arrows.

Coloring WS.com: Christmas Candles Coloring Pages – Offers 14 candle related coloring pages.

DLTK: This Little Light – About Me Activity, Christmas Candles

Big DIY Ideas: 40  Simple Candle Making Instructions and Ideas – Offers links to various candle making activities. Click on the word, not the picture, to access instructions.

Activity Village: Candles – Kid friendly projects for candles.

Videos

YouTube: Candle Playlist  –  Learn about the history of candles, how candles are made, how to make an origami candle, and how to draw a candle.
Here’s one of the videos in the list…

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Note: If this, or any other post on Funschooling and Recreational Learning, has inspired you in a positive way, or you have featured it in a blog post, please comment and link back to where it can be found! Thank you!


Bells

Carillon of Peter And Paul Cathedral in Saint-Petersburg

Wikipedia: Bell– Etymology, history, styles of ringing, church and temple bells, bellfounding and more. Also,
Campanology – The study of bells.

Owlcation: Interesting Facts About the History of Bells – Article includes information about: Introduction of Bells Across the World, How Were Bells Made, Tuning of the Bell, What Are Handbells?, Bell Towers, What is Bell Metal?, and a list of Famous Bells Around The World. Site includes photos and videos.

Discover Bell Ringing: Site offers a way to find local ringers, music of the bells, history of bell ringing, up the bell tower, learning to ring, technique of ringing, bell mechanism, and other bell related things.

Brosamer’s Bells: Bell History – Offers a short article and a photo gallery of old bell information that includes pricing information, informative text, descriptions, part names, and more. Pictures can be viewed on line or downloaded.

History of Bells.com: History of Bells – Information about the cultural history of bells, and bell facts. There are more featured articles on the bottom of the page.

How To Draw Cartoons Online: How to Draw a Cartoon Bell

🔔🔔 Please use caution when downloading things from the Internet. 🔔🔔


Tim’s Printables: Christmas Bell Templates, Colored Christmas Bell Templates

FreePatternsArea: Bell Shaped Christmas Decoration Craft Cut Out Pattern – Download the pattern, print it out, and cut it. Right click on your mouse to capture the pattern you want and save it to your computer or copy and paste it into a file 

graphics. 

First Palette: Bells – Offers a page with 4, 2, and 1 bell to download and use.

DLTK: Christmas Bells and Christmas Bells Coloring Pages

Videos

YouTube: Bells Playlist – This list includes more than 30 bell related videos about the history of bells, listen to bell ringers, learn how to draw bells, and origami bells, and bell crafts.
Here’s one of the videos in the list…


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Oysters & Pearls

WikipediaOyster – Information about salt-water bivalve molluscs – types, anatomy, etc..
Pearl – Information about the gemstone, pearl. Etymology, definition, physical properties, fresh and saltwater pearls, creation and much more.

American Pearl: A Brief History of Pearls: How Pearls are Harvested – Article about harvesting pearls, early history of pearl harvesting, and caring for oysters before harvest.

Sustainable Pearls: Harvesting Pearls – A short article about how pearls are harvested.

LiveScience: How Do Oysters Make Pearls? – How natural pearls begin in an oyster shell.

How Stuff Works: Animals: How do oysters make pearls? – Article talks about the natural production of pearls within the oyster’s anatomy and how cultured pearls are created.

Oceana: American Oyster – Describes what an oyster is, how it grows/reproduces, and about depleted population due to over-fishing.

Metal Floss – 15 Shucking Amazing Facts About Oysters – This list offers some interesting facts about oysters, such as their ability to filter water, hold back fierce waves, their nutritional value, depletion and restoration projects, and more.

Ideo: Columbia.edu: Commonly seen organisms in Oyster Gardens – PDF: Information about creating an oyster garden – includes predators and reef associates. Includes pictures.

Original Oyster House – 10 Oyster Facts You Didn’t Know – Info about oyster gender, oyster beds, human consumption, species, nutrition information, and more.

A-Z Animals: Oyster – Oyster facts, where they can be found, lifespan, color, food, predators, habitat and more.

Nat Geo Sites: Oysters – About oysters: As a food, habitat and range, shells, behavior, and threats to survival.

Rondale’s Organic Life: 6 Surprising Things You Should Know About Eating Oysters – Farmed oysters vs wild and the best time to eat them.

Recipes
Food Network: Oyster Recipes – Fried Oysters, Char-Grilled Oysters, Oyster Po’ Boy, Grilled Oysters Rockefeller, and more.

Southern Living: South’s Best Oyster Recipes – Offers a variety of ways to enjoy oysters including: Grilled, baked, as a pot pie, stew, and a few other methods.

NYT: Cooking: Butter-Fried Oysters – A classic recipe.

Videos

YouTube: Oysters & Pearls Playlist –  Videos include: How pearls are harvested, how pearls are formed, and how to shuck and eat an oyster.
Here’s one of the videos that can be found in the list…


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Note: If this, or any other post on Funschooling and Recreational Learning, has inspired you in a positive way, or you have featured it in a blog post, please comment and link back to where it can be found! Thank you!

Mummies & Mummification

British Museum

Discover Magazine: The Chemistry of . . . Mummies – Article – From the site: The secret ingredients used by Egyptian embalmers are revealed at last.

My Learning: A Step by Step guide to Egyptian Mummification – Offers a step by step process of mummification and pictures of Ancient Egyptian art. Use the arrows on the bottom of the page to go to the previous and next pages.


Wikipedia: Mummification – Discusses the process of mummification. Also Mummy – A longer article about the meaning, history, types, Egyptian mummies, Christian mummies, and other cultures. Plus the treatment of mummies in modern times.  Also, Chinchorro Mummies –  Talks about the mummified remains of individuals from the South American Chinchorro culture.


Ancient Egypt: Mummies – This site is fun to explore. After you read the brief article on the main page, you will see three words on the bottom: Story, Challenge, and Explore, click on any one of these words to start or continue your adventure. Each selection will offer you more information and some will offer another section to discover.


NOVA: Mummies 101How mummification works, plus a picture gallery.


BBC: Egyptian Mummies – Explore the fascinating and varied history of mummification across continents. There’s an interactive Make a mummy activity on this site too. Also, Mummies Around the World.


The British Museum: Ancient Egypt – Mummification Offers pictures and a little bit about the process of mummification.


Canadian Museum of History: Mysteries of Egypt – An article loaded with pictures.


Smithsonian: Ancient Egypt: Egyptian Mummies – After a brief article, this page has a large picture gallery.


Discovering Egypt: Egyptian Mummification – Offers mummification methods based on what could be afforded by the family.


Crystallinks: Ancient Egyptian Mummies – This site offers a lot of pictures of mummies and Egyptian art. Click on the links within the short articles/captions to learn more about Egypt.


Mental Floss: 15 Mummies You Can See Around the World – Offers a picture gallery and short bits of info about each picture.


Ancient Origins – Ten Incredible Mummy Discoveries from Around the World


Mummy/Mummification Activities & Fun Stuff


BBC: Make a mummy activity, played online. (Same as above.)

Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago: Mummy– Anubis leads you through the mummification process. Interactive site. Double clicking is needed to pick up most items.

Popsugar: Apple Mummies – Learn how to make Apple Mummies.

DLTK: Mummy Cardboard Tube Craft – Instructions and printable materials to make this project.

wikiHow to Make a Mummy Costume – Offers a few different ways to make a mummy costume.

The Idea Room: 25 Halloween Mummy Crafts & Treats Mummy related craft made from recycled items, and fun treats such as cookies, cupcakes, meats and veggies.


Fun Family Crafts: Mummy – Mummy related cookies, decorations, treat ideas, and crafts.

GetColoringPages: Mummy Coloring Pages 50 downloadable and printable pages.

Science Kids At Home: Mummy Experiment – Directions for an experiment that uses apples and a variety of salts.

Education.com: Hot Dog Mummy – Use a hot dog and baking soda to learn about mummification. This is a long term project.

Videos

YouTube: Mummies Playlist – Information about mummies and mummification, origami projects, and science projects. Here’s one of the videos in the list…


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Note: If this, or any other post on Funschooling and Recreational Learning, has inspired you in a positive way, or you have featured it in a blog post, please comment and link back to where it can be found! Thank you!