Home School Life Journal

Home School Life Journal ........... painting by Katie Bergenholtz
"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

Advent Activity: Snowflake Bentley and Snowflakes

Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin
Book: Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin

"Under the microscope, I found that snowflakes were miracles of beauty; and it seemed a shame that this beauty should not be seen and appreciated by others. Every crystal was a masterpiece of design and no one design was ever repeated., When a snowflake melted, that design was forever lost. Just that much beauty was gone, without leaving any record behind." - Wilson A. Bentley 

Observe Snowflakes


Have you ever really looked closely at snowflakes? To make this easier, take piece of black construction paper and slip it into a plastic protector sleeve. Put this in the freezer to get it good and cold or the snowflakes will melt on contact. The black construction paper gives good contrast so you can see the snowflakes and the plastic sleeve keeps the snowflake from melting into the paper. More instructions on how to do this can be found at the Handbook of Nature Study blog links here. You can see some flakes with the naked eye, but a magnifying glass reveals even more. If you look closely enough you can see that the flakes are in different shapes, such as hexagonal plates and stellar plates. What kind of observations can you make between the type of snow and the shape of the crystals?



Once your kids have learned to look at snow crystals, they will begin to notice them more and more about them at other times too. Noticing new things becomes natural.


Make Paper Snowflakes


 If your paper isn't already square, fold your paper into a triangle, which will leave a strip along the side.
 Cut that strip off. If your paper is already square, also fold it into a triangle, but you will skip this step then.
 Fold that in half to make another triangle.
 Now fold this into thirds...
 which will leave some "fox ears" showing at the top.
 Cut off the "fox ears" by cutting straight across.
 Now, here is the creative step. Remember anything you cut out of the point will be in the center of your snowflake. Also, a good rule for young ones to remember is if they cut in on one side, be sure to come back out that same side. It prevents accidently cutting your snowflake so that it falls apart.
 Once you are satisfied with your cut-outs, carefully unfold your snowflake.
Each one is unique.

Crystal snowflakes

They look lovely hanging in the window or on a Christmas tree.
You could also make crystal snowflakes as a science project.

4 comments:

  1. This is a lovely book AND project. Where we do not usually get snow in TX, I must remember to do this when it happens to fall! And read that book. I fun activity during the winter doldrums!

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  2. DJ wants Quentin to know that it made his day when he received his Christmas Card. I want to tell you how awesome of a mom you are! Thank you so much!!!

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  3. A great story - we used to have the book - but I must have gotten rid of it in one of my purges

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  4. Thank you so much for sharing this. I am new to homeschooling and I need to slow down and appreciate all that God has provided.

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