loving life with the little man and an elephant

Thursday, November 20, 2014

"Rainforest Adventure"- Jaguar Growl

This month our Mother Goose Time blogger community is focusing on how we prepare. I think the true answer to this question is we prepare however we can. For example this morning I prepared for our Mother Goose Time day while the kids played with snow inside. Yes, inside. 

We have gotten an abnormally large amount of snow the past week and it is very cold. Therefore the snow is almost too deep to play in and it is very cold. I figure this is a good way for the kids to still play in the snow. 

Once I was prepared and the kids were done with the snow the first activity we completed today was called J is for Jaguar Art. We talked about what a jaguar looks like and what color spots it has. The kids then decorated the letter J with black spots. I then helped them to attach eyes and whiskers to their J. 

When they were finished with their jaguar art we talked about where the jaguars live. Besides deciding they live in the rainforest we talked about that people are destroying their homes. We decided to make a home for our jaguars. 
When then talked about what we would do if we were cold. We decided we would get a blanket. I asked them what would happen if we took the blanket from our tent. Mason said we wouldn't have a cave anymore for our jaguars. We then talked about how what we want might hurt others. We then worked together to rebuild out tent. I think Mason at least kind of got it. : ) 

Our last activity for the day was waiting for the kids in the toy room. 
The kids discovered the j and were very excited. We started by talking about how far a jaguar can jump. Mason then showed us how far he can jump. The kids then took turns jumping off the end of the j. We placed a circle to dot the j where they landed. 

Mason was very proud that he jumped the furthest. : )

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

"Rainforest Adventure"- Canopy

Today's circle time was exciting because it was the first time we could report the weather as being snowy. 

We had a good size snow come down yesterday and were able to build our first snowman of the season. It continued to snow much of the day yesterday and is snowing again this morning. 
We started our rainforest day learning about the canopy of the rainforest. We talked about who lives in the treetops of our trees. We decided we see mostly birds and squirrels. We then talked about what animals might be in the treetops of the rainforest. We decided we might see monkeys, toucans, and macaws. 

Our first activity of the day was called Subtracting Monkeys. Mother Goose Time provided us with counting monkeys that the kids enjoyed playing with at first. 

I then showed them the Rhyme time Poster. We hung five monkeys on the side of the Cars table and then sang our Five Little Monkeys rhyme. The kids really liked the rhyme and caught on by the end. Mason said the jaguar would not be able to get his monkeys because they are not close to the ground. 

The next activity we did may have been one of my favorites we have ever done. We started Bugs on a Vine talking about where we see bugs. We decided we mostly see them outside and in the trees. We made some vines from the paper bag provided by Mother Goose Time. The kids then laced the paper leaves on their vine which was a great fine motor activity. They then took stickers off the sheet and stuck them to the leaves. 

I think my favorite part of this activity was that Mason was "in charge" of the stickers and he was so sweet to ask Hailey when she needed a sticker. Their conversation about the stickers was what every mom wants to see. 

Their bugs on a vine turned out great! 

Our last activity for the day was Slow Sloth. We looked at the pictures of rainforest animals and determined which ones moved slow. We put the animals into one of two piles. Those that move slow and those that move fast. 

 We then put them all together in one pile. I pulled out the cards the kids moved slow or fast like the animals picked. 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

"Rainforest Adventure"- Forest Floor

We started our day off with Mother Goose Time's Experience God curriculum. We are learning about Adam and Eve. Our learning point for today's lesson was that it was Adam's job to tend the Garden of Eden and name the creatures. God has a special job for each of us as well. Today the kids got to make one of God's creatures, a turtle, Herb the Turtle. They started by painting the bowl provided by Mother Goose Time green. 

We then added pom poms for the head and legs and eyes to the head. We then planted seeds provided by Mother Goose Time and are waiting to see what will grow. 
I prepared for today by setting most of the activities for the kids to discover on their own. They were at work on the activities before I was even ready. : ) 

We started our rainforest adventure with the activity Rainforest Walk. I created a hexagon out of painter's tape on the floor. The kids enjoyed doing just about everything in the hexagon that day. I asked the kids to show me how they can wiggle on the ground. There actions were pretty funny. They then walked around the hexagon and moved in different ways. Next we were supposed to put the Rainforest Animal Cards from Day 1 facedown inside the hexagon. For the life of me I could not find the Animal Cards from Day 1. I realized that I threw them away. Ugh!! So we used the Animal Matching cards we will use on Day 8 instead. Once we placed the cards upside down they picked one at a time and acted like that animal around the hexagon. 

Our next activity was Stick Shapes. I think my kids look forward to these activities every month. I put the supplies for these activities in a drawer in our play room and they often go get them throughout the month. It was a rainy day so we looked out the window and tried to find different shapes on the plants outside. They then matched the pattern blocks to the pictures on the Shape Mats. 
Our final activity for the day was Wet and Dry Art. We started by talking about what the rainforest floor feels like. We decided it was probably wet and warm. The kids then were able to feel some moist dirt in a container. They decided it was wet but cool. 
I then gave them a piece of paper and dry chalk. I asked them to draw on their paper with the chalk. We decided it was very dry. I then gave them a small bowl of water and they put the chalk in the water. When they drew with the wet chalk it was much darker and wet. 

Mason really enjoyed getting the chalk wet over and over again. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

"Rainforest Adventure"- Rainforest

Welcome to November and a whole new Mother Goose Time curriculum "Rainforest Adventure". After going through this new curriculum I was very excited about this upcoming month. I started this curriculum off by asking Mason what he thought we could find in the rainforest. He first said a bear. Then realized he was not too sure. Oddly enough we watched The Lion King just recently so we were able to talk about the animals that we saw in that movie and realize that many of them live in the rainforest. 
We started the day off with a lesson from Mother Goose Time's Experience God curriculum. This month we are talking about the story of Adam and Eve and our theme is that God is just. We started by reading the Adam and Eve story from our children's Bible. I then showed the kids the first story card and read to them about Adam. 

 Our activity for the day was to put the events of the Adam and Eve story in order. Using the colorful cards provided by Experience God. 

The kids then got to color a picture of Adam.

Our first activity from "Rainforest Adventure" was called Big Breath. The opening question for this activity was "Where do you think clean air comes from?" Before asking this question to Mason and Hailey I thought about that they may not even understand that we breath clean air. So we started by feeling our chest rise and fall as we breath. I explained to them that they are feeling themselves breath and that when they are breathing they are bringing clean air in and out of their lungs. We were then able to talk about that the trees help to keep the air clean. I then told them that often the rainforest is called the "lungs of the Earth". I asked Mason why he thought that and he wasn't sure then I showed him some pictures of the rainforest in some of the books we got from the library and we decided it was because there were so many trees. 
Then Mason and Hailey each chose a name tag. They helped me to spell their names on the name tag. 
 We then put the name tags upside down on the floor and they chose a name tag. We decided which name we had drawn and tried to come up with other words that started with the same letter as each name. 
Our next activity was Rainforest Collage. We again talked about things we would see in the rainforest. We read the book "The Rainforest Grew All Around" and were able to come up with even more things that live in the rainforest. By the way that is a very fun book! We then looked through the supplies for the activity and they each took their time making their own rainforest out of the supplies. 
Our last activity for the day was called I Spy Rainforest. I think this might be one of the kids' favorite activities every month. They always love getting out the Theme Poster and Looking Glasses and finding different items on the poster. They used the looking glasses and found the monkey, jaguar, and butterfly. They then fluttered like a butterfly and roared like a jaguar for much of the day. Thank you very much. : )
 One thing that I did learn about the Theme Poster this month is I should put it down low for the month. I often put it up on our string where we hang our art work so we can look at it. But when I put it up there it is never touched again. I put it down low this month simply because I had other things on our art work line I didn't want to take down. In the last few days the kids have gone over to the poster several times and used the looking glasses to find things on the poster. Almost every time they do this we get to have a discussion about the rainforest. Who knew! 
What a fun start to this new curriculum. I am really looking forward to learning more about the rainforest this month.