Friday, March 26, 2010

T Lessons

We were able to accomplish quite a bit this week. The girls made paper plate turtles over a two day period. On day 1 we sponge painted the carapace (top shell) green and the plastron (lower) yellow.

The pictures were taken on day 2 so all my attention could be on the girls as they painted. In the above photos they are getting ready to glue on the legs, tail and scutes (the scales). I alternated between white glue and glue stick. I found it was better to put the white glue on the plate so the girls could place the legs and tail where they belonged. Then I let them use the glue stick to glue the scutes on independently.

I also realized it made more sense to do the scutes first. as they went on the bottom of the plate. And after gluing on the legs and tail to the top of the plate glue was dripping (I did it in this reverse order for Amelia first before realizing the consequences.)

Next the girls drew eyes and nostrils onto the heads and I stapled two identical head pieces together, leaving a hole at the neck, big enough to poke in a couple of cotton balls for a 3D effect. Then they glued the head onto the plate and I stapled the bottom to the top. I bent the neck back and stapled it so that when it fell forward it wouldn't droop too far.

Tabitha loves playing with her turtle.

So far that is our only craft. Though I am trying to think of something to go in their letter T book.

I made a file folder matching game. Matching upper case T and lower case t.

(And of course, triangle starts with T)

I pulled out Tabitha's Melissa and Doug Alphabet Train Floor Puzzle she received for her birthday last year. She had only used it once and it was forgotten. I am glad I remembered it for the letter T. We laid the pieces out and sang our way down the alphabet, pausing at each letter for the girls to go hunting, repeating it over and over and over. The last few letters Tabitha finished off by herself, without having to repeat the alphabet song.

We also got the jump rope out and used it as a tightrope.

(I even had Tabitha tippy toe across.)

I also introduced a couple of new

Montessori activities:

I found some "Parts of a Turtle" cards at Montessori Materials. They have a bunch of materials that are free, you just have to look for the items listed in purple.

(For some reason I can't get these pictures to turn the RIGHT way)

And I made Egg Sound Shakers. I keep them in a basket and they are to find the matching sound and place them in the egg carton. I started with half a dozen, but that seemed super simple for Tabitha, so I brought out the rest and a full dozen egg carton.

She enjoyed shaking them, though she discovered right away that the matching colors held matching sounds. So, I had her close her eyes and I handed the eggs to her.

As she tended to peek I decided to use her doctor's mask as a blindfold.

After she matched the sounds for a while, she wanted me to try. So, I closed my eyes and let her put the eggs in my hand.

And last week I forgot to post about an activity I introduced. I am considering it Montessori as it was an activity we used with the toddlers where I worked. It is a math/numeral recognition/one to one correspondence activity. I had this in the planning stage for a while. Tried to make my own numerals, big mistake. I finally broke down and printed out the large number templates from I cut them out and contact papered them. Each numeral has the corresponding number of pieces of Velcro attached. (The one other thing that kept this on hold was that I wanted to find black Velcro so it would stand out more, but when we finally made it to a Walmart, I forgot. So I went ahead with introducing it anyway.) Tabitha enjoys attaching the snowmen to the Velcro. At the Montessori we changed the attachment objects with the season, so I will soon be changing it to a more springy picture. At the Montessori we didn't have the numeral zero. I decided to add it so I could show the girls that zero means nothing, there is no Velcro on the zero and you don't need to put anything there.

Our wordcard words this week were:
tent, telephone, turtle, tiger (the ones I found sign language signs for)
tag, toucan and Tabitha.

To see what others are doing with their preschoolers and toddlers head on over to Homeschool Creations and 1+1+1=1.

Tot School

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Postcard Update/Deer Park Visit

Yesterday we took a little excursion to the Deer Park. This was actually a postcard seeking trip for our Postcard Swap that is being hosted by Tanya Peila. She is hoping to start the swap at the beginning of April and seeing as we are going in the order that the states joined the union I have to have my cards ready to go ASAP living in Pa. Figured I better get them ready to send as I will be busy with newborn baby stuff soon.
We were able to find some postcards, but I will have to buy some elsewhere so I have enough. Speaking of which, here are the states that are still needed:

North Dakota
Rhode Island
South Dakota

And how does mom get the children interested in going on a 20 minute drive to get postcards? By telling them we will get to feed the deer of course. Though Tabitha was somewhat interested in picking out the cards. (I do plan on using the info we gather through this swap to have them each make a book on the states, so even if they aren't too interested right now at their young age, we will have it as a resource as they get older)

So, here are the pictures from the deer park.

Even with the fence between the girls and the deer, the girls were a tad bit scared. Tabitha tended to throw the crackers at the deer. She didn't like the fact that her hand was so close if she was holding the cracker and the deer's mouth was on the other end.

I am linking this to Fantastic Foto Fieldtrips over at The Homeschool Post

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Some real Ss lessons

Wow, I had a little more "get up and go" this week and we really did get some quite a bit accomplished. My mornings are still shot most of the time, but we do lesson time after dinner. In the morning, it takes me forever to eat breakfast and then after I finish it takes me a while to feel human. Gotta get girls dressed and hair done. Sometimes I am guilty of wanting to check my email or some blogs. Ooops. We do get some books read in the morning and sometimes our Raffi CD gets turned on for some "dancing." At times, I will let them watch an educational DVD. I also end up finishing up craft/project preparations in the morning. So, after nap the girls wake up, we have supper, daddy leaves for work and then we have our lesson time. Word cards, putting pictures on the poster, sign language, and crafts I have prepared, workbook and Montessori activities.

Here are a couple of pictures of the suns we made last week that I posted about here.

Amelia's: Tabitha's:

I had several ideas for crafts this week. I have seen posts about string painting and decided to try it. I did not get any pictures of the actual string painting process because I figured I should have my focus fully on the painting, I mean mess. Let's put it this way, the girls went straight upstairs for a bath and I don't think we will try string painting again until they are older. We were attempting to make spider webs, and they sort of look like what they were supposed to:

We attached spiders with thread and tape:

Then they glued on flies for the hungry spider:

We also made a sky book, different ways the sky might look at any given time. I came up with the words and layout before going to bed the one night. I spread this project out over a few days so the girls wouldn't be overwhelmed. I also thought it would be cool if they glued on the word "sky" on each page that needed it.

And here is the finished book:

We read some different S books this week, in addition to the ones from last week. We read "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" by Iza Trapani. This was a favorite of mine when the older kids were younger. This spider not only climbs up the water spout, but also up such things as the kitchen wall and the rocking chair. Very persistent spider actually, because even though she keeps getting knocked down, she keeps starting over to reach her goal. We also have a book on the sense of smell called "The Five Senses: Smell" by Rius, Parramon and Puig. (I found it at the thrift shop and I sure wish the books on the other senses had been with it). We played a game, once again a spur of the moment idea, incorporating the sense of smell. I took old baby juice bottles (that have been being used as sound/shake canisters) and saturated cotton balls with different scents.

I made a chart of sorts, and even as I was making it I wasn't sure how the game would be played. I now know I need to print out some new ones to "laminate" and design some sort of marker pieces so we don't have to throw them out after one time.

In the game, we took turns opening a bottle, identifying the scent, marking it on the chart and replacing the bottle, then mixing them up again. The object is to be the first person to mark all 5 scents before filling up a column of one scent which would disqualify you. We each have our own chart. I wanted to make some markers that were shaped like a nose, but as I couldn't figure out how to draw a nose, or find a decent one online we just marked it with x's. The scents I used were: lemon, peppermint, garlic, coffee and beef. The beef was made from broth and didn't work out really well after all, too faint and now it just smells nasty. So, I am looking for an alternative scent.

We also planted our green pepper seeds. I figure that went well with the book "The Carrot Seed" by Ruth Krauss that I found on our shelf.

Here are the seedlings from last year, though they never did amount to anything:

And the full view of our indoor garden:

Tabitha has always enjoyed planting. Last year was the first year we attempted a real garden (notice I said "attempted"). The year before that she helped plant seeds in tubs on the porch and in the tire by the fence. Here, I found some pictures:

She was 16 months old.

And here she is working in Steven's "circle garden":

Okay, enough tangents. Sorry.

One more S project to show you. Last night we "made" spaghetti for the S books:

The girls glued on the "bowls" and then I put a nice big glob of white glue on the bowl for the girls to glue the yarn spaghetti to:

Then they painted red sauce onto the spaghetti:

To see what others are doing with their preschoolers and toddlers, head on over to Homeschool Creations and 1+1+1=1.

Tot School

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