March 2009

modaleaves37 cheerful, unusual quilt patterns with high-quality directions and 


color photos.   I like that piecing guidelines are shown in diagrams as well as words.  Also includes 2 bags, 1 bib, and graph paper.  I especially like the Strawberry Lemonade Throw (not shown), probably because the final instruction is “decorate”!


Do Outlines and Blackline Masters Stifle Creativity?

enchbikeLori Bourne writes beautifully about learning in her short commentary about diagrams, labeling, and coloring. Whether or not you agree with her conclusions, I admire her focus on the big picture. People will always disagree on how a particular goal is best met. What’s most important is to keep our eyes on the goal instead of idolizing the method.
Diagram of a Bicycle from Enchanted Learning.

What Matters is the Goal.

Snake Oil Salesman Image from Progressive Majority Wisconsin

Snake Oil Salesman Illustration from Progressive Majority Wisconsin

It turns out, not everything works the way it should.  If you’ve been starting to wonder … Tide laundry detergent works.  All doesn’t.  At least, that’s what Consumer Reports has to say. 



A handful of high-quality printables for math and language arts, with many more to purchase.  Prices are higher than other education sites, but Montessori programs will find easily find rare items to complement their classrooms.  The blog has some interesting posts, including Do Blackline Masters Stifle Creativity? and Holidays.

Whether you’re proficient at counting stitches or just like to muck around with felt and glue, ber_owleasy1you can probably make some sort of cute toy out of soft stuff.  Berroco Yarns offers a free owl pattern which seems to make lumpiness part of its charm; I’m thinking I could probably turn that into a few cute creatures if I tried.  And these days its easy to get handsome knitted socks from the craft store or Job Lot, ber_puppetso I could probably fake a puppet like this adorable dog.  Where’s my handmade pride?  I don’t know; it seems to take a hike when the knitting needles come out.

Below: Butterfly Doll


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