Friday, June 30, 2017

Israel Topographical Map - How-To-Make

Here is just ONE way you can make a topographical map - indeed, this is how they are currently made at Garden of Francis! 


The completed map
Start with a board in the dimensions you like. The pictured sample is the same size as our puzzle maps.
Plaster of paris cloth strips
pan of warm water
placed over styrofoam peanuts glued to the board 
Draw the outline from the regions puzzle map (or eye-ball it if you've done a thousand times over or are using a board different size from your puzzle map ;) )
Glue on the styrofoam peanuts (actual styrofoam, not the bio-degrading ones (they dissolve when wet) - or use pieces of aluminum foil or another material that won't decompose when wet and will hold its form. You're make the line of mountains in the east (along Perea) and the line of mountains through the core of Israel, ensuring that Mount Carmel has height (the point that juts out into the Mediterranean Sea, east of Nazareth and the Sea of Galilee).

You don't have to deal with slope because that happens naturally with the plaster of paris cloth.

Getting there with the plastic of paris layers - don't let it dry in between layers! It won't stick!
We wrap the plaster of paris cloth strips around the edges - and after it is all done, glue a piece of felt to the bottom to cover the edges and create a nice soft quiet bottom. 

We use craft sticks for our symbols, so we take a sharp knife or a pair of scissors and press into the plaster of paris layers when it is firm but not entirely dry yet - about 10 minutes of wait-time. Then we take a smaller piece of plaster of paris cloth, fold it in half, wrap it around a spare craft stick saved for this purpose and press it into the hole. A few times of sliding it in and out and smoothing it all down, creates a nice hole for the fresh craft sticks later (please note, it likes to tighten up when drying - and sometimes even once more after that - so you just use a craft stick inserted in and gently wiggle it back and forth to open it up again!).

Paint the water! 

So pretty! 

Layers of glue on the land - sprinkle on some sandbox sand - tap off the extra.
When dry double-check all areas look nice. 
Some sand likes to stick to the water. Use a dry paintbrush or blush brush or similar. 

All clean!
Time to polyurethane.
Use a water-based polyurethane as the oil based ones leave an amber tint to everything. 


Paint the symbols (mounted onto half-length craft sticks)
Make the name labels. 
Unpainted symbols in an optional add-on box.
For making this yourself, it is nice to have two boxes:
one for the symbols (younger children)
one for the name-labels (older children returning to the work)


Thursday, July 23, 2015

Painting area!

Getting there! 

We started with 3 rooms in the basement - one long and skinny; I took down the wall a few months ago to that narrow room. Last Friday, I took down the framework for it.
This week, I got the shelf in that room cleaned up, painted all pretty white and turned it into my painting area wink emoticon It is SO bright coming down into the basement now!





Got rid of boxes we just won't ever use. It was time. I have kept so many for moving purposes over the years (all well used! Not ONE regret!) and then utilized appropriate ones for shipping purposes for Garden of Francis. Now that we are more settled (one more move in my lifetime???), this first batch included all damaged boxes and "product" boxes that just don't work for GoF shipments.


Legoboy getting the fire started. 





Monday, June 29, 2015

Monday, May 11, 2015

New Montessori Products at Garden of Francis

Some recent new additions to the Montessori "family" at Garden of Francis:




Oceans Puzzle Map

  • Choose to combine it with a world puzzle map (movable continents AND oceans) or be a straight-up ocean puzzle map (only the oceans are puzzle pieces). 


Banded Line Paper in Green, Pink and Blue

  • These colors do NOT correspond with the PBG series, but are correlated to the paper sizes provided via AMI training: start with the green lined paper which is widest; move to the pink when ready (might be using pink for some and green for other writing), then move to blue (the narrowest) when ready. Many lower elementary children are still using the blue paper. 


Printables:

  • Garden of Francis now offers many of the downloadable files in printed format to be mailed to you. Lamination is also an option on the printed items. All primary and elementary downloadable materials currently available for sale are now available in printed format. 

Downloads AND Printables
  • Every download you need for the content of elementary Montessori language experience is NOW ready to purchase! Logical analysis, the "I love" packets for verb tenses, word study, grammar boxes, and more! 
  • This includes all the necessary content - additional supplements will be added over time; such as downloadable/printables for creating boxes to hold the verb tense material and more. 


Faith Formation Montessori-Style: 
  • New design on the Liturgical Calendar with deeper prisms for the Sundays of the church year. 
  • If painted calendars are purchased, the outer edge of each Sunday prism is painted gold to represent the light of Christ remaining constant throughout the year. This also helps the child situate the pieces properly within the liturgical calendar. 


Monday, December 22, 2014

Liturgical Seasons Sale - 10% OFF

Liturgical Seasons 10% off sale at Garden of Francis

A bit of a sale between now and December 31st (ends at New Year's EST).

10% off all items in the liturgical season categories of Garden of Francis. This includes such items as the following:

  • cosmic cross puzzles
  • Christmas season version of the Jesse Tree ornaments
  • Jesse Tree ornaments (Advent)
  • Jesus Tree ornaments (Lent)
  • Easter season version of the Jesus Tree 
  • season-appropriate prayer table cloths, made to the size needed, with or without lace
  • MUCH MORE! 

Anything with a Christmas season item will be upgraded for free to rush order shipment, so that you might enjoy those items during Christmas THIS year. All other orders (and the non-Christmas components of large orders) will ship in the order orders were placed, over the next 2-3 weeks. 

God bless!


This item is not on sale, but is SO beautiful, I am advertising it anyway ;)

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Our New Workshop

Instead of driving 25 minutes to someone else's basement and less than 10 square feet of space, here is what we have now:


Not just the prettiest picture - I was just too excited to GET the picture that moving items out of the way to SEE wasn't a priority.


Thursday, February 20, 2014

Montessori Economic Geography Stamps - Now AVAILABLE for pre-order



The Economic Geography Stamps are now available for pre-order at Garden of Francis. (click here)


These are now shipping! They will begin shipping out prior to March 1. I am taking pre-orders to see if it is worth purchasing the tackle-boxes and the wood holders in bulk, or just buy a few at a time as I need them.

My son is so excited!

(ok, I am too!)

I am so happy to be offering these for substantially less than the ONLY other set available anywhere online that I can find - and they correspond with our KotU geography album!




By the way, side-note: if, as we are using them, anyone wants a different stamp image made, the process I'll be using can very easily accommodate this! In fact, after this first batch of these ones, I am going to look into making stamps of other images for other themes.





Montessori Elementary Economic Geography Stamps - corresponding with the Keys of the Universe Montessori Elementary Geography Album chapter on Economic Geography.


Each  polymer (not rubber, but like rubber) stamp image measures 3/4 inch at its widest; mounted on a 1 inch square cube - with the image imprinted on the top of each cube for easy reference.


Select which set you would like: the core set contains 26 images of mineral, plant and animal resources; the supplementary set contains 14 additional images in more specific items.


Each corresponding tackle-box comes with a cardstock print-out of the included images for that set.


CONTENTS CORRESPOND WITH AMI MONTESSORI ELEMENTARY TRAINING ALBUMS. And are most specifically designed for Keys of the Universe albums.


Purchase your own ink pads according to the color designations of your choice (see the elementary Montessori geography album for further details).