Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Last Week of September

Where has time gone?  This last week just flew away and I hardly got a chance to breathe. I apologize for the long post.  When I started looking for pictures I got all excited again about how much fun we had and had to include more pictures than I originally thought I would :) Here are the highlights of such an awesome week of learning:
 We went to the Miller Farms Fall Harvest Festival on Friday and had so much fun.  The kids loved eating the raw corn right after picking it!  I love this picture of CJ and Eman below.  They are great brothers.

 Monday morning started off with a bang!  It was a review week and we spent most of Monday talking about the letter T.  We welcomed KL to our class and talked about families.
 We made "T" headbands from the Moffatt Girls.
 And "T" watches, also from the Moffatt Girls. Be sure to have your preschooler review their letters by tracing them with their finger and making the sounds of the letters.
 The homemade applesauce we had for snack was a big hit!

 For art we drew and wrote about our families.  Find our Families Lesson Plans here.
 Ordinal numbers are great to introduce with the families theme.  I set up three chairs to introduce ordinal numbers and we took turns sitting in the different seats.  Ordinal numbers are numbers like: first, second, third and so forth.
 Preschool A got to use the Hot Dots pens for the first time.
 They loved them!
 Preschool B always seems to start off on the sofa with individuals reading their student reading books.  It is such a comfy cozy time and I haven't yet gotten a picture of it because the camera is always downstairs from the morning.  Then we move into a little word work, like sorting our word families:

 And playing a little music.

 Our writing time is starting to really take its own form.  Everyone is encouraged to write about what they are most interested in.  We sound out words (right now it is a teacher-student team effort to stretch the words and write as many sounds as possible) and then we draw pictures to match our words.
 We had great writing Monday - "Mickey and the big wig pretty red lips."
 I introduced one of my favorite math games: Guess my secret rule.  It is a game that teaches categorizing.  I started with big and little spoons.  3 big spoons and 1 little, "Which one doesn't match? Why?".  We sorted by size, we sorted by type of silverware, we sorted by type of tool (silverware vs. paintbrushes).  It is such a fun game to start realizing that items can be categorized into different groups dependent upon their traits.
 We learned the sight word "you" and worked on sounding out words.
 Tot School Tuesday was a lot of fun.  Find the Nursery Rhymes Tot Pack here.
 The "Nursery Rhymes and Singing Times" prop box was a big hit.  There are few different items in there that represent different nursery rhymes or songs.
 The Humpty Dumpty egg shakers and the candles were the most popular items.
 We read nursery rhymes.

 We ripped tissue paper and glued it to cardboard tubes to make horns like Little Boy Blue.

 We colored ALL over the tot pack with wet erase markers.

 Snack time was roasted carrots with olive oil and sea salt.  They were surprisingly a big hit.
 We also made crowns like Old King Cole.
 Wednesday preschool (also about Nursery Rhymes) started out with making "Creatures".
 This cool creature builder set was fun to explore.
 OB decided that he wanted to trace his name instead of build a creature, which is a great activity first thing in the morning in preschool.
 This is a great time of year to start introducing 12 piece puzzles to preschoolers. They have mastered the simple peg puzzles (where you match a single piece to an existing picture) and are ready for something a little more challenging.

 A little glimpse of what story time looks like.  We used nursery rhymes to talk about rhyming words being words that sound the same at the END of the word.  It's still a bit tricky even for the older preschoolers, but encourage their conversations at home about rhyming words and they'll soon be masters of rhymes!
 We made twinkling stars for art, and yes, my house still is covered in glitter :)

 It was so much fun to act out the nursery rhymes and songs of the day.  We did "Pop Goes the Weasel" and each child took a turn hiding behind the table and then jumping up when we said "pop!".  It was so much fun!

 Just ask if you'd like me to email you the photo of your child doing this activity, I couldn't post them all :)
 We worked a bit on our speech and articulation as well.  There are some great songs by Speechercize that help strengthen the muscles of the mouth and tongue.  They are great activities to do as you are learning alphabet sounds to help kids become aware of what parts of their mouth they are using and what shapes their mouth and tongue can be in.
 Preschool B started with some looking at the topics we are studying and sharing some exciting things we've been learning.
 We continued our word work on our word families and sight words.
 We're having a little trouble blending the sounds together to make words.  Sometimes, if you ask a child to "sound it out faster" the sounds become individual staccato sounds and kids struggle hearing the sounds.  Try this game: Take a car and drive it under the word very slowly.  As it is under each letter make the sound of that letter.  Show your child that the car likes to drive from the beginning of the word to the end very quickly and cannot stop at each letter.  Therefore, we have to blend the first sound into the second and so forth in order to read the word.  Have your child try.  They should start by driving the car very slowly, and then make it drive more quickly as they can blend the sounds together more quickly.

 We continued our "Guess My Secret Rule" game but applied it to attribute blocks. Kids got the opportunity to start creating their own sets.  We'll be playing this game for a bit longer as they catch onto having only 4 items in their set, 3 of which have a matching attribute and the forth not matching that attribute.
 We also had the opportunity to play more on the piano today.  We've been continuing our conversation about making music is different from making noise. 
 Tot school Thursday was a quiet yet delightful day.  We spent all but the last 15 minutes inside since it was so wet from rains the day before.  I love this picture of Lil'GalB.  We played toss throughout the day, certainly one of the most favorite games of toddlers.

 We colored our Old King Cole crowns.
 EMan decided that the hole in his shirt was perfect for putting crayons into :)
 Lil'ManD's completed crown.
 We also ripped tissue paper to make horns.  Lil'ManD LOVED blowing into his horn.

 Playing with the Nursery Rhymes Tot Pack. I had oodles of mittens and gloves on the table as well for some fun 3 Little Kittens games and working on the motor skills of putting on the mittens.
 It's always interesting to watch how the two different tot school days can start with the same supplies and tot pack and yet go completely different directions, every week!  It just goes to show that even with the same curriculum our children will get things out of it according to their current needs.  Tot school Tuesday kids were very interested in pulling out the craft punches and making little paper stars all over the preschool.

 We read different nursery rhymes as well.
This picture is actually from Tot School Tuesday, it just jumped to the wrong location I guess, but isn't it just adorable?

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