Books, Picture Books

FIAR – Hello Lighthouse

Your word is lamp on my feet a light on my path. Psalms 119:105

祢 的 话 是 我 脚 前 的 灯 , 是 我 路 上 的 光 。诗篇 119:105

Hello Lighthouse – Winner of the Caldecott Medal in 2019, Sophie Blackall, author and illustrator, painted a beautiful story of the life of a lighthouse keeper. The story evolved along with his life as he got married and became a dad while fulfilling his duties as a lighthouse keeper on the highest rock of a tiny island. Regardless of seasons and weather conditions, the lighthouse and the keeper remained as a beacon.

We were crawling through this book from Christmas to New Year and through CNY! A wonderful way to end and start the year by reminding ourselves that God is our lighthouse; with scripture verse from Psalms 119:105.

"Your word is lamp on my feet a light on my path."
Love it that I found the mandarin translated version from the library

Here are some of our go-along activities…

Experimenting with Light – How light travels; through different objects such as mirror, opaque box, translucent paper.

White Light: Why spinning a wheel of rainbow colours produce white light?


Tape resist canvas painting

And how can we forget our lovely lap book to document her “Hello Lighthouse” learning journey.

BFIAR, Books, Learning Through Play, Picture Books

The Story of Ferdinand

A gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. 1 Peter 3:4

温柔,安静的心,这在神面前是极宝贵的。彼得前书 3:4

A story of a bull (Ferdinand) with a gentle spirit, which was banned in Germany and Spain, when it was first published in 1936 during the Spanish Civil War and World War II.

But not like Ferdinand; he still liked to sit just quietly under the cork tree and smell the flowers.

The Story of Ferdinand

This story reminded me of another book we rowed previously, “Play With Me” by Marie Hall Ets. A girl approaching various animals to play but all retreated until she sat just quietly and all the animals came back to her. Both stories revolving around the theme of a gentle and quiet spirit which I highly instil on both of girls who are loud and feisty!

So here’s how we row The Story of Ferdinand!

  • Creating our lap book
  • Bible verse 1 Peter 3:4
  • Watch animation of the same title on Disney+
  • Brief intro of Spain and Madrid
  • Discuss issues on bull fighting
  • Learning letters B and H (Link to printouts at the end of blog post)
  • Learning about bees and making a bee craft with pegs
  • Rhyming words ending with “ell” (Link to printouts at the end of blog post)

A visual treat for younger Gem as she watched the 7 minute animation of The Story of Ferdinand on Disney+.

Madrid, Spain

Older Gem had the privilege of visiting Madrid with daddy in 2018 when she was 6 and these were some books she bought from the trip. While she is not rowing The Story of Ferdinand, she shared some of her favourite moments from the trip with younger Gem as she relished her memories through photos from the trip.

Learning about Letter B, Bees and Making a Bee Craft

B is for bee, beautiful and brilliant! “B is for bee” is a simple and brilliant go-along book. Made a bee craft using pegs, tulle and pipe cleaner.

Books, Learning Through Play, Picture Books

The Story About Ping

Honour the Lord your God. Obey all his rules and commands. If you do, you will enjoy long life. Deuteronomy 6:2

敬畏耶和华你的神,谨守祂的一切律例诫命。申命记 6:2

From the same author of “Angus Lost”, Marjorie Flack, wrote of another animal who kind of got lost. Ping, a duck, who lives on a houseboat by the Yangtze River was late and decided not to go back to avoid being punished. After a series of encounters, one of which almost landed him as dinner for a family, Ping decided to face the consequence of being punished.

“Promoting” younger Gem to rowing FIAR series, this is a story of being accountable for our own actions. We went through a series of activities and had them documented in a lap book.

  • Memory verse; Deuteronomy 6:2
  • Identifying wildlife on along the Yangtze River by visiting River Wonders at Mandai Wildlife Reserve
  • Exploring Chinese cultures through making snow skin mooncakes, Chinese calligraphy, etc.
  • Differentiating male and female mallards
  • Building a LEGO wise eyed boathouse
  • Rational counting using stickers
  • Buoyancy experiment
Younger Gem drew a picture of a boy messing up his play area while his mummy was busy at the kitchen.

China and the Yangtze River

Since story was set in China, we explored China through traditional costumes, food, calligraphy, etc.

While we can’t physically visit the Yangtze River, we headed to the River Safari’s (now known as River Wonders) section of the Yangtze River where they house wildlife which depend on the river for their survival. Younger Gem’s task was to identify three animals whose survival depends on the Yangtze River. Older Gem’s was to elaborate on the three selected animals.

Mallards, Male vs Female

Mallards are similar to peafowls, where the males (peacocks) are more colourful and attractive than their female counterparts, the peahens.

Building the “Wise Eyed Boat” with LEGO

Daddy and younger Gem spent some time building a LEGO wise eyed houseboat.