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Showing posts from August, 2013

{The Kid's Co-Op} Tot & Pre-K Learning Through Play

We're in our second week of Tot School activities at our house, which I decided to start for Caterpillar (just turned 2) when Wild Thing started preschool a few weeks ago. Sometimes, we explore our learn and play basket while Wild Thing is at school, but often Wild Thing wants to explore the basket too once he gets home, or I don't get to the basket with Caterpillar in the mornings, so we all explore the basket together. So, Tot School has evolved and become Tot + Pre-K Learning Time. I love it! You can check out all the ways we explored the letter A last week here. I'm excited to share our letter B activities with you next Tuesday!

Here's 10 Activities that caught my eye from last week's Kid's Co-op because they seemed like something my toddler and preschool boys would love. Hope you like them too. 

Since the first letter A basket I put together for tot school focused on apples, the apple tree circle game from Let's Play Music seems like something we can try…

{Ten for Tuesday} Tot School: Early Literacy Activities - Letter A Exploration Through the Five Senses (Lots of PreK Activity Add-Ons Too!)

With Wild Thing going to preschool, I knew I wanted to start doing Tot School with Caterpillar -- not only for the learning experiences he would enjoy, but to also make sure I gave him some focused mommy time while Wild Thing was at school. I decided to go with the Letter of the Week approach and to focus on a different sense everyday -- 5 Days, 5 Senses. It seemed like a good way to help me structure the learning experience, and I am giving him multiple ways to engage and explore items and sounds throughout the week. So, here it is: 5 Bins, 10 Activities -- 1 Week of Play and Learning. 

1. We started with Taste and this simple A is for Apple + Avocado Basket. Of course, we started by tasting both the apple and the avocado in the basket and reading the first page fromEating the Alphabet: Fruits and Vegetables from A-Z by Lois Ehlert.

2. More Apple Activities: In addition to tasting the apple, we also put the letter A milk caps inside of our foam apple. (This foam apple is recycled from …

{Virtual Book Club for Kids} 4 Activities for Freight Train by Donald Crews - Move, Eat, Draw and Learn with this Classic Book

The boys and I were very excited that this month's author for the Virtual Book Club for Kids was Donald Crews. He has many books the boys love, but (like so many other children) Freight Train is their favorite. We've done several activities with the book in the past, but enjoyed revisiting this month through new activities as we got busy moving, drawing (or creating art), eating and learning with Freight Train. We always explore the Virtual Book Club for Kids' books in this way. I hope you'll enjoy these four simple, but fun activities to go with the book. 

Move - I used this movement activity as an opportunity to also reinforce color learning with Caterpillar, who recently turned two. We would look at the book, and then look outside for objects in various colors to recreate the freight train. 
Later, we also picked up small/loose objects from outside to put inside the freight cars in relation to the corresponding color. For instance, their yellow plastic baseball bats w…

{Project 101} Weekly Library Challenge: Back to School Books for First-Time Preschooler and Mommy

I'll admit that I wasn't as excited this week to write my Project 101 post. The reason my excitement waned is that I'm not really into the book I am reading from the library. However, I realized that I had a fabulous book to share that the boys have been reading. With Project 101: Weekly Library Challenge, each week, I share one book from the library the boys have really enjoyed that week, and one book I am reading. My sons are almost 4 and 2 and the oldest (Wild Thing) just started preschool. 

This week at the Santa Clarita Valley Bookmobile (a part of the County of Los Angeles Library which celebrates its 101st birthday this year, hence Project 101), Wild Thing selected Maisy Goes to Preschool by Lucy Cousins. Wild Thing really enjoys Maisy books so it wasn't that surprising that this book caught his eye. 

When he got it, he had been going to preschool for exactly one week. Things seemed to be going well, but I was frustrated by his standard "I don't know"…

Back to School with the Kid's Co-Op: Over 300 Ideas and Resources to Help You Make This School Year Great!

Our end of summer family/work trip to San Francisco and our family efforts to get ourselves settled into a new going to school routine (Wild Thing started preschool for the first time last week) got me a bit behind with The Kid's Co-Op. However, I finally had time to look through all of the wonderful ideas shared last week (Thanks Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails, whose thread I followed last week to find links -- check it out for even more Back to School Ideas!). Now, I'm pleased to share over 300 ideas and resources for heading Back to School. 

Six ideas to make going back to school special: 
Throw a Back to School Party like The Taylor HouseUse these fun, free printables from Living Montessori Now for awesome First Day of School PhotosMake a First Day of School Picture Frame with Gummy LumpUse post-first day of school snack time to create meaningful conversation with these conversation snack ideas from Puddle Wonderful LearningCheck out Preschool Powol Packets Back to Sch…

{Project 101} Weekly Library Challenge: Imagination, Place and Time -- The Power of Books

A month or so ago, I focused on travel books -- books that I was reading from the library as part of Project 101, a weekly library challenge in which I highlight a book the boys love from the library and something I am reading. Most of these books were literally about places to travel to or were collections of essays in which others had written about a place they had traveled to. I also shared some children's books/kid lit that allowed young readers to travel through the characters in the books, exploring different places and/or cultures right at home through a good book. I am grateful for Project 101 and all I am gaining and learning through a weekly commitment to exploring books. 

This week, I find myself traveling through time with my recent library book. As I wondered through the library, I found myself in the poetry section and The Fact of a Doorframe, a book of selected poems from 1950-2001 by Adrienne Rich caught my eye. I read many of the poems in this book several times in…