Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Lentil's harmonica playing saves the day when calamity threatens the homecoming celebration for the leading citizen of Alto, Ohio.

I like the story of Lentil but I do find it one of the more difficult Five in a Row books to arrange activities for. Harry seemed to really enjoy what we did though.

We made fresh lemonade, which was actually delicious, despite my misgivings about the recipe (this one) which required not just the juice but the entire lemon to go into the blender! The resulting pulp was sieved to leave liquid. We had some nice glass bottles which I had been saving to re-use so they made the lemonade drinking quite exciting and we all enjoyed it.

We had a good session thinking about sound. We talked about sound being created by vibrations and worked out that hard surfaces bounce the sound vibrations around and soft surfaces absorb them. We tested this by bouncing hard and soft objects onto hard and soft surfaces and listening to the difference in the resulting sound. Harry also took his harmonica up to the bathroom to prove that it sounded good in the bathtub due to all the hard surfaces. Harry seemed to really take all this in and told Stuart about it that evening.

After one of our readings, I asked Harry to narrate the story back to me. We haven't done this before and Harry found it really difficult, which surprised me as he can usually remember a story word for word after a few readings. We will continue to do this activity with books coming up so he can practice. This was his eventual narration, which is good, it just took a long time and came with quite a lot of complaining!

Lentil tried to sing but he couldn't even whistle but he really wanted to make music so he bought a harmonica. He plays it in the bathtub. He plays it every day. He plays it on the way to school. Everyone likes his music except Old Sneep.

A train came into the town carrying Colonel Carter. The band are waiting to play but they can't because their lips are stuck together because they are watching Old Sneep suck a lemon. Lentil starts to play. Everyone is happy. They all go to the Colonel's house and he promises to build a new hospital for the town. 

We had a think about gifts and talents, as Lentil has an obvious talent for playing the harmonica. Harry thought about other people's talents - they were quite sweet!

And also about his own

I wrote some words from the book and Harry copied them. He also asked to write the word 'bathtub' as that was his favourite from the book and he thought of the spelling himself as he wrote it. We needed a bit of extra practice for writing 'b' and 'd' correctly but I am not surprised as we have been concentrating on reading over the last fortnight and haven't done any writing.

We also watched a couple of different YouTube videos featuring the song from the story - 'coming round the mountain when she comes'. We have enjoyed singing it with some instruments (including saucepan drums and wooden spoons today!).

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