Posted on

If You Take a Mouse to the Movies Hands-On Homeschool Activities

When the nights turn chilly and darker, there are fewer places to go outdoors as a family. We usually see the return of “Family Movie Night” on Fridays in the fall and winter as a result. Our family loves watching movies based on books. Add a few hands-on homeschool activities, and everyone is ready for both learning and fun.

But whether you actually watch a movie or not after reading If You Take a Mouse to the Movies, the book itself is a delightful read for the little ones. 

The boys were excited to revisit this old favorite and bring their mouse stuffed animals along for a chalk pastel lesson. 

Add these hands-on homeschool activities with a fun look at If You Take A Mouse To The Movies. Pictures books and homeschooling together.

All About If You Take A Mouse To The Movies

If You Take a Mouse to the Movies is a sequel to If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. And if you haven’t read that book, stop right now and go get a copy! It makes this second book even more enjoyable because you and your child will recognize the familiar pattern of the story. 

We love this sweet tale of a little mouse who is easily distracted from one thing to the next. If this isn’t a picture of all parents everywhere with their toddlers and preschoolers, then I don’t know what is. 

So many fun activities! Add these hands-on homeschool activities with a fun look at If You Take A Mouse To The Movies. Pictures books and homeschooling together.

Even older readers enjoy the hilarious “cause and effect” sequence as the pages turn. From the movies to popcorn, from popcorn to decorating the tree, from the tree to a snowman, the story unfolds just how quickly one thing leads to another. 

All along the way, Mouse brings so much joy and energy to each endeavor that you, along with his friend, can’t help but indulge him “just this once” in his next idea!

Truly, as a parent this book always speaks to me about the serendipitous moments of life with kids, enjoying each experience, and greeting the day with more of an “open-hand” so you can just soak up the joy of being together. 

The illustrations are a delight as well! You can feel the coziness of the huge blanket, sense the flurry of snow, and understand the glitterful creativity of making ornaments. 

The best part of the story is at the end. Of course! I don’t want to give it away, but, let’s just say, the author does a great job of bringing things to a satisfying final page. 

Definitely the If You Give… series is a wonderful reading choices for kids and makes a great gift to give any small child or new parent. 

String popcorn with If You Take A Mouse to the Movies!

If You Take A Mouse To The Movies Homeschool Lesson

In our homeschool, a book is never just a book. It’s nearly always a jumping off point for more! This book is no different. You can have SO much fun with the themes of If You Take a Mouse to the Movies!

Start with a collection of Nana’s chalk pastel lessons to explore the fun activities the Mouse enjoyed in the book.

hands-on homeschool activities If You Take a Mouse to the Movies
hands-on homeschool activities
hands-on homeschool activities

Plan a movie night with your kids and set up a popcorn bar. You’ll need a great illustration to feature at your popcorn station so have your kids draw Movie Theater Popcorn from You ARE an ARTiST’s Chalk Pastels at the Movies series. 

hands-on homeschool activities
hands-on homeschool activities

In the book, Mouse decorates a tree. Kids can decorate their own tree with Nana when they paint Christmas Tree in the Snow. Or paint some Christmas Ornaments. I love how Nana encourages kids to decorate the tree and their ornaments to their liking. She always demonstrates how to create the painting but leaves so much creative room for young artists to make it their own. 

My oldest added the snowman to his Christmas Tree painting. We also completed the Winter Fun Snowman lesson and the boys enjoyed adding a few of their own sledding details to the scene. 

While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night hymn art lesson at You ARE an ARTiST
hands-on homeschool activities with Christmas hymn art lessons

Need a warm up? Grab a blanket and listen to some Christmas carols. Then pick one of the Christmas carol chalk pastel lessons from the Hymns course to paint. While Shepherds Watched Their Flock by Night or We Three Kings are good choices. For older students, try I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, which has delightful details. 

The Christmas Angel or Gingerbread Man and Holly would also be great choices to go along with this book (and the original If You Give a Mouse a Cookie book!). 

Don’t forget to enjoy all that popcorn you popped! Just try not to get too distracted, like Mouse! 

Wonderful art display of hands on homeschool activities
hands-on homeschool activities to go with a book study on If You Take a Mouse to the Movies

More Picture Book Hands-On Homeschool Activities

I can’t ever get enough of pairing books with our other lessons. If you’re like me, you’ll want to follow this Mouse mini-lesson up with some of these hands-on homeschool activities: 

Little House on the Prairie Christmas – Several of the Little House books include Christmas scenes give a delightful peek into the world of pioneers and homesteaders from decades ago. Choose one of the books, or simply read a few of the Christmas chapters before painting this chalk pastel lesson. 

Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening – While this is actually a poem, not a story, several picture book versions have been made that help kids enjoy the visuals behind Robert Frost’s quintessential winter poem. 

Favorite Movies Homeschool Art Lessons – There are so many Chalk Pastels at the Movies options including this one with How to Train Your Dragon.

The Chronicles of Narnia – The first book people usually read from this series is The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, which is set during an eternal winter. Kids will enjoy painting the Lamp Post lesson from Nana to ago along with this classic novel. 

Heidi – Set in the Alps, Heidi feels like a cozy winter or Christmas read, don’t you agree? Paint those majestically rising mountains as you tend the goats with little Heidi in the pages of her story. 

hands-on homeschool activities

Nana has created a whole course to celebrate art and literature with hands-on homeschool activities! If you’re a Clubhouse Member at You ARE an ARTiST, check out the I Drew It Then I Knew It Literature series includes nearly twenty literature-themed art lessons. Plus, you can download the companion workbook which includes a planner, writing or discussion prompts, and fast facts for each book or poem! What a gem to add to your literature lesson planning!

If you have a favorite literature book, maybe you could share it with Nana. You never know when you’ll see your favorite title pop up as a new chalk pastel lesson!

So… if I give my kids some chalk, they’ll draw some pictures… and if they draw some pictures…there’s no telling where their imagination will lead them. Truly, one thing does lead to another when it comes to exploring with art and picture books! 

Add these hands-on homeschool activities with a fun look at If You Take A Mouse To The Movies. Pictures books and homeschooling together.

Julie is a teacher, writer and homeschool mom. Her blog Happy Strong Home shares encouragement for cherishing children, enjoying motherhood, and growing strong families. Discover homeschool resources, natural living tips, and family activity ideas. Julie has been featured on Million Praying Moms, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, and the Melissa and Doug blog. She offers writing workshops and a “homeschool neighborhood” community to support parents in their homeschool adventures. Find Julie on Instagram to be the first to know when new workshops and community events are available. 

Posted on

A Merry Christmas Hymns Study For Your Homeschool

Christmas hymns study can be an enjoyable part of your Christmas School homeschool day. A beautiful opportunity for the family to learn and worship together.

Whether you homeschool as normal through December, add in Christmas activities, or trade all your homeschool curriculum for ‘Christmas School,’ a Christmas hymns study can be an enjoyable part of your school day. It is a beautiful opportunity for the family to learn and worship together.

The Joy Of Christmas Hymns

Our family enjoys hymn studies year-round, but Christmas is my favorite. I love the joy and peace that flow from Christmas hymns and find they are a great way to bring the season’s joy into our homeschool.

Some of my favorite Christmas memories involve singing Christmas carols at church on Christmas Eve, at home with hot cocoa, even while decorating the tree. The music of Christmas seems to be present in almost all of our Christmas traditions.

Christmas Hymns Lessons For Your Homeschool

Typically, our family studies one hymn per month, spending time a few mornings a week listening and learning about the hymn. However, I can never pick just one Christmas hymns study, so we often cover a different Christmas carol each week the month of December.

Christmas School

We listen, sing, create art projects, do copy work, and even learn to play the hymns on instruments (that is, my children learn to play because I do not have musical gifting). Sometimes combining it all into a unit study and enjoying learning about the birth of Christ through these activities.

*If you are new to hymn study or homeschool art lessons, I want to take a minute to remind you that you do not need to be a music teacher (or an art teacher) to enjoy these lessons as a family. Do not worry about your musical skills or artistic abilities. Just enjoy learning together as a family.*

Angels announce Messiah's birth!  Christmas hymn study can be an enjoyable part of your Christmas School homeschool day. A beautiful opportunity for the family to learn and worship together.

The Messiah (For Unto Us A Child Is Born)

“For unto us a Child is born,
unto us, a Son is given,”

For Unto Us A Child is Born is a beautiful song from Handel’s The Messiah.  Nana has created two lessons in the Christmas Clubhouse Course that relate to Handel’s Messiah. There is a lovely picture of the nativity and a fun trumpet painting to represent the angels. As the “cherry on top” of this hymn study, Clubhouse members also have a special music appreciation lesson on the Messiah with Mrs. Mary at SQUILT music. You can find it in the master classes or the Christmas Clubhouse lessons.

While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night Hymn Study for Your Homeschool

While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night was written by Nahum Tate in 1700. This song was a metrical paraphrase of Luke’s account of the angels visiting the shepherds. Metrical paraphrase was paraphrasing scripture to not add or delete from the content of the scripture but allow it to be poetic for singing. During that time period, most songs sung in church were from Psalms, and people considered this song unusual because it came from Luke.

“1But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David, a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.

Luke 2:10-11 NIV

The lyrics were based on Luke chapter 2, the Biblical account of the angels visiting the shepherds to tell of the Savior’s birth. The paraphrasing gives the song a poetic form and allows it to flow while staying true to the scripture.

As we study this hymn, there are many beautiful versions that you can listen to and are available for free online. We particularly enjoyed the performance by Andrew Peterson.

While Shepherds Watch Their Flocks is an excellent opportunity to spend time studying Luke Chapter 2, possibly even using it as copy work or your scripture memory for the week.

While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks at Night hymn study for homeschool. Perfect for Christmas school!

While Shepherds Watch Their Flocks Homeschool Art Lesson

Next, it is time to add art to your hymn study! Nana has created this beautiful chalk pastel painting of the shepherds, the perfect accompaniment to the hymn. We love how the bright colors of the star stand out on the darker background.

This lesson is available to Clubhouse Members in the Christmas Clubhouse art course. Once you have completed the picture, you can hang it up in your home or give it away as a gift to someone that needs a little joy this Christmas.

While Shepherds Watch Their Flocks By Night Hymn Study Resources

Christmas Tea Time with I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day hymn study.

I Heard the Bells On Christmas Day Art Lesson for Homeschool

Nana has created a stunning snowy village scene to go along with I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day! You can pair that lesson from the hymns course in the clubhouse membership with this free hymn study: I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day.

Also, this post about Christmas tea times has excellent ideas on turning this lesson into a memorable family tea time. You might even start a new family tradition! This is definitely one of my favorite chalk pastel lessons.

Christmas School

We Three Kings Of Orient Are for Christmas School

The hymns course also includes a beautiful painting of the three wise men on their camels for We Three Kings. The sunset colors in this painting are gorgeous, and the camels are so much fun for the children. This hymn is great for Christmas time or even after Christmas for Three Kings Day. We find that often the week or two after Christmas is a great time for additional lessons because fewer events and obligations are vying for our time.

Homeschooling Through The Christmas Season

I couldn’t share about Christmas hymns study without mentioning my favorite Christmas carol, Away in a Manger.   There is a great art lesson included in the Christmas Art Lesson course, and the lyrics are simple enough for even young children to learn.

Another favorite lesson is the beautiful Christmas Star Lesson, which our family paired with the hymn Silent Night.

In addition to all of these beautiful hymn studies, there are some other incredible Christmas art lessons available.

There is a Christmas Ornament lesson, which makes a beautiful Christmas card for friends and family.  There are also Christmas Trees, Gingerbread Men, and more. The classes are such a fun way to celebrate Christmas and enjoy your art time together.

Holiday Hymns art lessons for Thanksgiving, Christmas and more!

Dawn is a passionate follower of Jesus, wife to Chris, and homeschool mom of four. In her spare time she loves to read, hike, and write on her blog Schoolin’ Swag. She enjoys reviewing curriculum and helping moms find the right fit for their family.

Posted on

Christmas Tea Time Is The Perfect Way To Enjoy Your Homeschool Holidays

Christmas Tea Time

We have all spent a holiday season, or two, caught up in the hustle and bustle. It happens to the best of us, doesn’t it? But this year, don’t forget to slow down and savor the season! One of the absolute best ways to do that is with a Christmas tea time.

But wait, there’s more! As much of a delight as Christmas tea time sounds, you can add art, poetry, some holiday hymns and make an afternoon of it. It’s like adding a cherry on top with sprinkles to your Christmas tea time!

The holidays are a great time to slow down for so many reasons. Especially if you homeschool, you may be ready for a break. But as most of you mommas know, we still have to keep the kids entertained. I also like to join my children in these entertaining activities! The holidays are so much better when you just take time to lean into your family.

Christmas Tea Time

So if you are like me, you may want easy activities that don’t require much preparation. We love chalk pastel art for this reason. I simply set out a few affordable supplies and turn on Nana. Our entire family can sit back and create together.

Add some holiday hymns playing in the background, a nice hot spiced tea, and a lovely Christmas art project – perfection!

Christmas Tea Time

Christmas Tea Time With Art

If this sounds appealing to you, all you need is to grab your family a Clubhouse Membership from You Are An Artist. You can enjoy tea time and art anytime with over 600 art tutorials to choose from. It also makes a fantastic gift for the family that keeps on giving all year long.

We love this art tutorial of I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day. As a homeschool mom, I also love that there are so many learning opportunities woven into this project. History, poetry, and music are all tied to this one piece of art.

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day art lesson is found in the I Drew It Then I Knew It: Hymns Course within the You Are An Artist Clubhouse Membership. This art lesson about the Christmas carol is originally from a Longfellow poem, making for a great homeschool lesson.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote the poem Christmas Bells in 1863. The sound of the bells signifies peace and hope during the civil war. It is a beautiful piece of American history worth learning during your holiday studies. The poem was set to music in 1872 and has been covered by many musical artists since.

Additional Resources For Christmas Tea Time In Your Homeschool

You can read or even memorize the infamous Longfellow poem and listen to various renditions of the Christmas carol too. We like to listen to different performances of the song and compare. It’s fun to discuss which ones we liked better and why.

You could even look up the biography of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, the poet. There is an interesting personal back story about how he came to write the poem Christmas Bells. Depending on how in-depth you would like to go, don’t forget there are opportunities to discover new vocabulary words within the poem, poetic elements, and civil war geography.

We think this one is a lovely art lesson rich with history and education that your family will truly benefit from. With peace at the core of this lesson, you will enjoy looking upon this beautiful scene all season long.

Christmas Tea Time

Courtney is a Jesus-pursuing, native Texan, homeschool mom of three, and she believes homeschooling can be a peaceful and productive rhythm. At Grace, Grow & Edify she helps families create peaceful homeschooling atmospheres through faith, organizational strategies, and cultivating strong roots at home. She is also the founder of Homeschool Mastery Academy.