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Welcome to my Spring Series called “Bringing Spring into your Homeschool”. Today’s post is by Dana Hanley about the wonders of botany with poppy dolls. Check out her bio below and enjoy reading! Also make sure to check out other posts in this series and guest author bios by clicking on “Bringing Spring into your Homeschool” under Blog in the menu.

Discover the Wonders of Botany through Play

Written by Dana Hanley | May 16, 2018

Dana Hanley writes at Life Led Homeschool (http://lifeledhomeschool.com)about taking a more relaxed approach to homeschooling which favors wisdom over knowledge, depth over breadth and joy over happiness. It hasn’t been an easy road. She lost a son in 2010 and has been working to recapture her vision for homeschooling after struggling through years of grief. As the Lord has slowly turned her mourning into joy, her heart has turned to sharing her journey to encourage other homeschool families whose hearts are struggling through the demands of homeschooling. You can also follow her on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/LifeLedHomeschool/

Spring is such a lovely time to get outside, go for a walk and simply enjoy being outside. It’s good for the body, it’s good for the mind and it’s good for the soul.

It’s also a wonderful opportunity to teach your children about the world around them through observation and play. Simply making toys, crowns and wreaths from the objects they find teaches proper vocabulary when you use correct terminology. And then, while their attention is focused, it is so much easier to expand their minds and teach them the wonders of a tiny seed, a blooming flower or an acorn shell.

This is why I love this little project, borrowed from Madame de Genlis (1746 – 1830), a French writer and educator. She herself was entirely homeschooled in a noble, but impoverished, Burgundian family. Her harp and her wit earned her admiration in Paris, where she eventually served as governess to wealthy families. One of her students would even take the throne of France.

She led her charges on nature walks long before Charlotte Mason was even born, and introduced them to botany through play. She encouraged them to appreciate the vast diversity of plantlife through games and crafts, including making these dolls from poppy flowers. Unfortunately, I am yet to find poppies near where we live, but we have modified these directions to make similar dolls from tulips, daffodils and lillies.

The petite, fragile dolls do not last very long, but the lessons learned through the act of play last a life time. 

Directions for a Poppy Doll

Materials:

  • poppy
  • blades of grass

Pick a poppy with at least five inches of stem. Bend down the front and back petals and tie them in the middle with a blade of grass. This will make the waistline and the doll’s dress.Take the side petals and bend them down, rolling them carefully into arms. Tie them at each end with a blade of grass. (Field poppies have four petals, so you will use one petal for each arm. Garden poppies may have eight, so you will use four for the skirt and two for each arm).

The carpel, or seed pod, serves as your doll’s head. The stamens will form a collar.

(directions taken from Hidden Stories in Plants by Anne Pellowski)

Check out more of Dana’s most popular posts below.

Amber Marie

Welcome to my homeschooling blog. I’m a former educator turned homeschool mom. Homeschooling is a relatively new adventure for our family. Click my picture to learn more about my story and why I homeschool my family.

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