Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Bath Math

(36 Months)

I found this activity on Pinterest, it's from In Lieu of Preschool.   I love her idea.  We made it our own by using the third board for word form instead of tally marks.  This learning activity met all of my qualifications for a homemade activity: it's cheap (one dollar), it takes less than five minutes to create, it's no mess, it's a fun learning activity, it's a hit with the kids!

At the dollar store, pick up a pack of rectangular foam sheets in a variety of colors, we chose one color for the number form, a second color for the count or domino, and a third color for the word form.  Number the sheets 1-5, next create dominos for numbers 1-5, then write the number in word form.

I was so happy when the kids got excited about playing with the number cards in the bath.  I let them first explore sticking the foam sheets to the bath wall, then I watched as they began ordering the numbers on the wall.  I let them work together, while I clutched my hands together to prevent myself from interrupting and correcting them that the numbers go from left to right (not right to left, the way the kids had ordered the numbers).  Once they had all five numbers ordered (in descending order), I asked them to use their favorite pointer finger to show me in the air which direction we read.  They did it.  Then I reminded them that that is the same order we place numbers on the number line.  Wild One and Little Miss worked at ordering the numbers again.  They worked together to place the domino foam sheets on top of the corresponding number.  Lastly, we worked together to identify the word form of each number, we started with five -since that was phonetically correct.  They easily placed the five on 5 (thanks to being phonetically correct).  Next we worked on four, three, two and one.  I was surprised that they just accepted that o-n-e spells the word one, even though there is no "w".  It saved me a conversation about learning how to read though.

They really like this one.  I definitely recommend it.  Easy, cheap and the kiddos love it!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Building 101

(36 Months)

Both Little Miss and Wild One love building with blocks.  I knew they would love this set.  It shows the child how to build small animal figures piece by piece (that's right folks, following pictorial directions).  We worked on the first one together and then a few days later they asked to do one on their own.  It was incredible watching them study the picture and then find the right piece, then look back at the book to see how the pieces fit together.  


Friday, February 22, 2013

Learning Fun

(35 Months Old)

Ok, so this really happened.  We were outside playing (as you can see by the remains on the rug, we were first playing with our dried beans), when I overheard Wild One saying to himself, "what number comes after two?   Three!"  I turned away from Little Miss, and saw him ordering the numbered fish (going from right to left- but he was ordering them)!  I asked if I could show him how to line up the numbers, and (thankfully) he said yes.  I reminded him that we line up our numbers the same way we read in our books, from left to right.  Then, I sat back and watched as he finished ordering up to nine. When he got to nine, he kept looking for ten - but for some reason there is no ten fish. 

Fast forward a couple of weeks and I catch Wild One repeating the same ordering activity.  I quickly ran to our box of pouch lids, and brought them out and we began counting our respective lids per number.  We're doing math!!!!   We only got to four, then he decided it was time to ride his bike.  Oh well, at least we got to four.

We were playing Look and Find, in our "school" books.  I love watching them concentrate.  We only spend about five minutes in our books, each page takes just about a minute to complete.  I plan on incrementally increasing the amount of time we spend working on the books, maybe by two or three minutes per month.  I don't want them to lose interest by spending too much time in the books, although I would love to allow them to continue working in the books until they feel they are finished.  These books are not independent work yet, so we try to do the same page at the same time.

Little Miss loves - LOVES - playing with play dough.  Especially pink play dough.  After we finished making another batch of homemade play dough, she decided to make a baby.  This is her first baby. She's always just asked us to make the babies for her, this is her first time making a baby by herself.

Prewriting Fun

Prewriting Fun
(36 Months)

How cute is this?  They are busy working in their "school" books.  We love playing school.  They are at the age, where they even ask to play school.  Love it!  First, they trace the path with their pointer finger and then they use a thin marker to trace the line.  They love working in these types of books.  I'm not sure if they like them so much, because we only bring them out three times a week or is it because we only do a few pages at a time, or maybe (just maybe, if I allow myself to be self-indulgent) that it's because I make it such a big production about playing school.  I love how excited they get about working in these books.  This past time Wild One asked to continue working, with a "please, Mommy, please can I do just one more?"  How can anyone say no?  He got me to say yes six times!  I'm in so much trouble, if I can't say no to him at three years old, how will I be able to say no at 13?

Uh oh, is this a peek into the future?  Wild One peeking at Little Miss's paper.

After they finished working, Little Miss asked to "draw"(write) her name.  She likes writing her name- she LIKES writing her name (I love that little girl).  We use the magnetic letters as a guide to remind her which way the lines go for the letters E and Y.  I'm not sure if it's because she's three, or if it's because she writes with he left hand, that sometimes she puts the vertical line on the right of the E instead of the left.

Our current "school" books are: