Thursday, April 10, 2014

Spring is Here!

It is always fun to come up with new and interesting ways for the kids to work with letters.
Here, they had to sort letters and numbers. 

Here, they are stamping the correct lowercase letter next to the uppercase letter. 

Sorting letters and things that start with M and W
 Matching uppercase and lowercase letters on Easter eggs
This is a little game called Letter Basketball. 
 The kids are sitting on the rug, and there are letters written on individual scraps of paper laid out in front of them. Each child is given a clue about a letter, and he/she has to find that letter and crumple it up into a little ball. 
 They have to stand on the blue line and throw the letter into the garbage can. So much fun!
On St. Patrick's Day, we read the book little blue and little yellow by Leo Lionni. We talked about how to make green. 
 We used shaving cream and paint in bags to test different color combinations. 
 Each child painted a cross to hang on the windows. They catch the sun so nicely. 
 We learned about Zacchaeus, who was a tax collector who wanted to meet Jesus. However, he was too short to see over the crowd! He had to climb up into a tree to be able to see the Savior. 
 Going along with the height theme, we measured the 3 year old class to see how tall everyone is. I have a real measuring tape in the doorway to my office, and the kids are obsessed with measuring themselves every day. You never know when you're going to grow! 
 After we got back from spring break, we started a unit on oviparous animals (animals that come from eggs).  I brought in my husband's pet cockatiel to kick it off. 
Pierre actually loves all the attention. 
 The kids colored pictures of him, and they wanted to see his reaction to their work.  
We have been reading a lot of books about oviparous animals:

One afternoon in science class, we experimented with Humpty Dumpty. We placed eggs in several different materials inside of plastic bags and predicted whether or not the eggs would break when dropped off the stage in the gym. 
 There's Humpty hiding in the sponges. 
Here's Humpty being dropped...
…and here he is smashed to pieces. Poor Humpty.
 All 7 seven eggs we tried did not survive the fall. We tried surrounding them with sponges, water, beans, foam, Jello, paper, and cotton balls. I think we may have been a little too high!

We have also been painting eggs for bulletin boards...

 …matching eggs based color...
 …and decorating eggs by sorting shape stickers. 

 The 3s got to paint with plastic Easter eggs. 

 Both classes got to make bunnies by painting with a fluffy "bunny tail". 

We are so happy that spring has sprung! 


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Pete the Cat and Grandparents' Day

I should probably be on some kind of marketing committee for Pete the Cat. He is so infectious for some reason, and I love that his books incorporate so many kinds of learning. We cycled back to colors and color words during this little unit about Pete and the author who created him. 
In this book, Pete steps in different things, and his shoes turn colors. 
So, the 4 year olds worked on color word recognition...
…and the 3s worked on sorting by color. 
We learned different things about Eric Litwin (aka Mr. Eric).
The 3 year olds did a button collage to go along with Pete's groovy buttons.
I put out this sign at the Learning Fair:

They cut out the bodies and the heads, and used pre-cut pieces to do the rest. I love how unique each one is!
 We discovered that our little stuffed Pete play music, dances, and takes naps when we're out of the room. We always try to catch him in the act, but he is very sneaky. 
Here is the video to Pete's favorite song to dance to in our room: 

 Unbeknownst to me, Eric Litwin was a speaker at the conference I went to on March 6 & 7. I ended up exchanging my ticket last minute so that I could get into his session. I sat right up front. He was so much fun! I wish the whole class could have seen him sing and dance and play guitar. 
 It's a little blurry, but here we are together! I was just so excited to meet him. 
March 10 was Grandparents' & Special Friends' Day.  It was so wonderful to see all the families. The 4 year olds made frames for their visitors.

I don't have a picture of a real frame that the kids made, but this is what I used for inspiration:

Thank you to all the grandparents, aunts, uncles, moms, and dads that participated!