Friday, February 28, 2014

The Letter S!

Honey Pot is 3.5 years old

Leap Frog Fridge Phonics

To introduce the letter of the week, we listened to Scout's S song!

S is for: Salt Tray

I have been seeing versions of this all over Pinterest. What a perfect unit to begin one! I used the Melissa and Doug box that Little M&M's animal magnets came in. (Never throw their wooden boxes away!) We started with some S shapes: the letter S, swirls and squares. Honey Pot just LOVED this sort of pre-writing practice. She did such a wonderful job, and it was a great sensory experience as well. We will be pulling this back out frequently during quiet-times, to practice other letters and shapes!

She decided to do some free drawing. Turns out this was a submarine. LoL. Still fits the S theme!

S is for: Sticker Storytelling

Yes. A thousand times, yes. Honey Pot is a natural storyteller. Oftentimes at dinner she will tell us stories--wild stories about ghosts, wolves, Mickey Mouse, Peter Pan, lava or monsters. I discovered this idea from The Imagination Tree, and thought it would be a nice prompt for her to explore this interest in storytelling. I pulled out both Honey Pot's sticker books, as well as my childhood ones. Then I gave her a piece of scrap paper. And I let her choose a few stickers for each story. I asked her to tell a story that included each of the items. I started her off with "Once upon a time," and let her take it from there. The following is what she came up with.

Sometimes I would try to help her become more descriptive. So I may have encouraged her to say "a pink bird" instead of simply "a bird." And we always finished with, "The end." She had such fun with this activity, and I think we'll be doing it again!

Worksheet - Connect the Dots

This comes from Education. She likes connect the dot pages, and this one helped her discover more words that start with S.

Worksheet - I Spy an S

This also comes from Education. This was a new one for her, and she enjoyed it! I would ask her what she saw in the picture, and what letter she thought it started with, based on the beginning sounds. She found other words, such as tree and bird, which she knew didn't start with S. And she only circled the things that did. I had to help her with the sunflowers she only knew them as flowers.

Worksheet - S Maze

This comes from Twinkl. She used her dot marker to follow all the S's to the end.

S Pattern Block Puzzle

We like these printables from Confessions of a Homeschooler. Honey Pot had no trouble with this!

S is for: Snowflakes

Honey Pot also completed an S craft that used some of our old snowflake confetti. It introduced another word that starts with S, further familiarized her with the shape of the letter, and was nice fine motor practice as well. She likes having a fun project to show Daddy when he gets home too!

Playdough Fun with S Shapes

We love pulling out the playdough for almost any unit. This one was particularly fun, as we focused mainly on rolling and playing with snakes! We slithered them around the table, had our snakes talk to one another and eat food. Sometimes their heads detached as they became too thin, and she thought it was hysterical.

Honey Pot added some eyes and a noodle mouth.

Here's one that has a button nose!

She practiced making really looooong snakes.

She used a craft stick to make a mouth indentation!

And she maneuvered her snake into an S shape.

And all on her own she started to roll it up. S is for snail too, by the way, Honey Pot!

Here are some other S shapes we made, most with cookie cutters: snowman, the letter S, star, snake and stegosaurus.

An S Snake.

And S is for seahorse! Kind of. Sort of. Right?

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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Dr. Seuss!

Honey Pot is 3.5 years old
Little M&M is 23 months old

We're celebrating Dr. Seuss' birthday again!
To see our previous Dr. Seuss units, click HERE and HERE!

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish - Craft

I Can Teach My Child had such a unique painting idea to accompany this book: corn syrup and water. We tinted it blue of course. It was a bit sticky to paint with, but the kids enjoyed themselves and the result is spectacular! I printed out a fish bowl template for each of them to paint.

Then they added some fish that I cut out from cardstock. It's so sticky that you don't even need glue.

When it dries, it still looked wet! Awesome craft.

Cat in the Hat - Pattern Matching Game

Honey Pot did this activity last year as well, and it was a hit. The printable comes from Joyfully Weary. There are more hats than what we've used here, which would be great for older kids, as it gets really tricky!

Can in the Hat - Snacks

We tried our hands at a couple of hat snacks that we've seen on Pinterest. The first is an Oreo cookie, marshmallow and candy melt treat. These were a bit too sweet actually, for us.

So we also tried simple strawberry and marshmallow skewer treats. YUM!

Green Eggs and Ham - Shape Matching Game

This was Little M&M's first shape activity. He seemed to love it! He already knows hearts by name, probably due in part to our Valentine's Day unit. Looking forward to starting shapes with him after we finish a couple more color units! Honey Pot had completed this when she was his age as well. The inspiration comes from The Princess and the Tot.

My Many Colored Days - Feelings Activity

This is a favorite for Little M&M, so I had to include it in our unit this week. We read the book and then I had each child choose a color to represent how they were feeling. Little M&M, new to the concept, chose many colors. So I guess he was having a mixed-up day! Honey Pot chose pink, to represent how she was feeling happy. The worksheet comes from OMazing Kids.

There's a Wocket in my Pocket - Scavenger Hunt

This idea comes from This Reading Mama, and it was a huge hit! After reading the book, Honey Pot created a few creatures of her own.

I cut them out and hid them around the house.

Then I would give her a hint as to where to find them. "There's a Glinds between the..." And she would guess "Blinds!"

"There's a Vissues under the..." "Tissues!"

"There's a Cooster on your..." "Booster!"

The game went on like that. It became a nice lesson in prepositions as well, as it was often changing: a Dooks between the books, a Lastle in your castle, a Nottoman under the ottoman. She had so much fun that we played the game twice through. Then she wanted to be the one to hide the creatures, and give me clues as to where to find them. When Daddy came home later, she asked him to play a couple rounds too. Huge success! Great rhyming practice.

Horton Hears a Who! - Beginning and End Sounds

I created a worksheet in Photoshop Elements to help Honey Pot recognize words based on beginning and end sounds. She knows this book so well. I read her a sentence from the book, with the last word missing, and she would be able to complete it. Then I asked her to guess what letter that word starts with, and which letter it sounds like it ends with. She was able to find the right word among the choices and circle it. 

The Lorax - Movie and Craft

We watched The Lorax movie for the first time, and did a fun craft to go along with it. First I had the kids color in a Lorax picture that I found online. And I cut them out.

Then we dyed cotton balls in yellow, pink and orange, as we saw in the book. We put a few cotton balls into a Ziploc bag with a cap full of rubbing alcohol and a drop of food coloring. Then we rubbed the cotton balls around in the bag.

There were always one or two cotton balls that soaked up too big of a smear of food coloring, and looked bad. So add extra cotton balls to each bag! We let them dry for a couple hours while Little M&M napped, though really it didn't even take that long.

Then I cut out strips of yellow cardstock and doodled some lines onto them in black colored pencil, to replicate the truffula tree trunks.

I supplied each of the kids with a piece of blue cardstock and a piece of green that I cut out to look like green hills. And they got to work gluing their pictures...

Then adding their tree trunks...

Squishing on some soft cotton ball truffula tufts...

Then adding the Lorax!


Cat in the Hat - Puzzle

Honey Pot received this as a Christmas present, and it has been a favorite quiet time activity. She and Little M&M have been on a real puzzle kick recently.

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