Fairy trails and Fairy tales: Week One

Christmas_treeThis week, we'll diverge from the Alphabet Path, and begin to  travel along a Christmas trail. To start, we'll become acquainted with the Christmas Tree Fairy. We'll copy and learn her song. Then, we'll study coniferous trees and learn the botanical information we can glean from looking carefully at Christmas trees:  Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris), Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), Noble fir (Abies procera), and Norway spruce (Picea abies). We'll draw and illustrate the fairy and narrate the folklore. I think this fairy is likely to be crafted out of beeswax.
Then we'll move on to the Christmas Fairy Tale book. Since Katie and Mary Beth are dancing in The Nutcracker at the end of the week, it's an appropriate week to watch old DVDs of past performances and to read up on the story. Nutcracker music is likely to be heard all the time around here this week.  We'll read the story of The Nutcracker in The Fairy Tale Christmas book and in this Susan Jeffer's edition and then I'll read and discuss the notes about the story which the author of Fairy Tale Christmas has made. The older children will write critical papers discussing the story. Everyone will draw and illustrate The Nutcracker. We're planning a "tea" which will include Arabian coffee, sugarplums, and snow cookies. It's going to be a very sweet week.