We are so blessed to have two of my friends, who are Catholic mothers and home educators, tutoring our children through the home-based charter school we use. Our "allotment" goes quickly with the extra tutoring, so over the summer my friend Trina and I discussed options for this school year. She suggested "trading" some time to stretch my allotment further - she would tutor my children in Math (and help with PAL) and I could do something for her... My question? What could I possibly do for her? (She is a brilliant teacher after all and was one of my siblings favorites at their high-school co-op.) She laughed and said she could think of plenty, starting with CELEBRATING THE FEAST DAYS with her children! She said all I would have to do is just include her children in some of the celebrations we have already throughout the year. Ooh!! Yes, that I could do! Her boys are also great friends with my boys, so everyone was excited about this arrangement and we have six fun feast days planned for this school year. Today we had our first afternoon of "Celebrating the Saints" and it was so much fun!
.: STORY TIME :.
There are many many books on St. Francis. Here are the books I choose from our collection to share with the children today...
Introduction and Art Appreciation:
by Carole Armstrong
"A lavishly illustrated volume--featuring the famed works of Raphael, Bosch, and Giotto--recounts the dramatic histories of many Christian saints, including John the Baptist, Francis of Assisi, and Joan of Arc."
Art Appreciation: Saint Francis Preaching to the Birds by Giotto about 1266-1337 Louvre, Paris
(Also featured on the front cover of the book.)
Read and Discuss:
by Mary Joslin
Vocabulary and Discussion Prompts from Catholic Mosaic
"Here, simply and charmingly retold, is the classic story of the man who became a channel of God's peace to the world--its people and its creatures."
We them moved on to the following fun books saving "the best for last" at the request of my boys:
by Bernadette Watts
"After Saint Francis grants his wish for a golden cage, Crow realizes the folly of envy and the value of freedom and love."
by Josephine Nobisso
"While other children’s religious titles focus on Saint Francis of Assisi as an adult, few, if any, have concentrated on the early life of the patron saint of animals and the environment. Stunning illustrations punctuate this beautifully told story of Saint Francis as a boy as he communes with nature and treats even the fiercest of animals—a hungry wolf—with the same compassion he would show his grandmother. In a fearless display of courage, tolerance, and understanding, the young Francis makes peace with the wolf, foreshadowing his teachings of harmony with the world around us and man’s duty to protect nature."
(I have also blogged about this book here.)
by Richard Egielski
"Terrible wolf is terrorizing the town of Gubbia, and no one can stop him! First the townspeople send a brave knight. He never returns. Then they send an army of trained warriors. They get destroyed. Finally the townspeople send a great and mighty war machine, but even that can't stop the wolf. The villagers don't know what to do -- until Saint Francis visits the town and speaks to the wolf in his own language."
This is such a fun book to read and totally captivated the children...
Can you tell which picture I was showing the kids when this photo was snapped? ;)
Bud isn't sure what to think about that scary wolf...
.: ACTIVITY :.
After we had finished reading all the books I sent the kids outside to burn off some energy while I prepared the supplies for decorating Wolf Paw Cookies!
You can find the directions either in the archives here at Shower of Roses, at Catholic Cuisine, or in this month's issue of Catholic Digest! ;)
.: ST. FRANCIS COLORING PAGE :.
I had printed out various coloring pages, but Charlotte's St. Francis Coloring Page was unanimously voted the favorite and the only one chosen by the kids! Thank you Miss Charlotte!
.: PIZZA :.
I served pizza for lunch, perfect for this Italian saint!
Olive Oil Pizza Dough
adapted from Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day
- 3 1/4 cups lukewarm water
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon yeast
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 7 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
To make the dough:
Use the "dump and stir method" of mixing the dough in a 5-quart Container with Lid, using a wooden spoon. Cover the container, not airtight and let it rest for about 2 hours on the counter. The dough can then be used right away, but it is much easier to handle once it has been thoroughly chilled. The dough can be stored in the refrigerator for 2 weeks!
Today, since we eat meatless on Fridays, we topped the pizzas with Chunky Tomato Sauce and Olive Oil, and various other toppings including Fresh Basil, Mozzarella, Parmesan, Sliced Mushrooms, and Black Olives. Yum!!
I transferred the pizzas from my counter to the hot stone in the oven using my amazing Super Peel and baked them at 500˚ for 5-6 minutes each.
.: PRAYER :.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury,pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.
It has been so much fun hosting give-aways each day this week, and I have especially loved hearing from you all in the comment box! Thank you for all your kind comments, prayers and support. Today's giveaway has been sponsored by Krista, who would like to pass along one more duplicate book from her own collection in addition to the Catholic Mosaic: Can you find Followers of Jesus? Introducing Your Child to Disciples.
We don't own this book, but we do have Can you find Saints? which is a favorite in our home! You can see pictures in this post.... It would be perfect for All Saints Day! Anyways, back to Can you find Followers of Jesus?...
If you would like to be entered to this giveaway, just leave a comment on this post, and make sure your email address is either linked on your profile or included in the comment so that I am able to contact you if you win.
There is still time to enter the other giveaways for a copy of Catholic Mosaic, a copy of St. Therese the Little Flower Daily Journal, the two children's picture books, The Greatest of These is Love and Mama's Notebooks. The giveaways will all be open through Sunday, October 6th and I will update each post and contact the winners next Monday, October 7th.
Thank you all for participating!
Happy Feast of St. Francis!