loving life with the little man and an elephant

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Inside the "Winter Wonderland" Box

Happy (almost) Thanksgiving!! Hard to believe we are already at that time of year but I feel like the time flies by with every post I write. This past month the kids enjoyed learning more about the rainforest through Mother Goose Time's Rainforest Adventure

December's Mother Goose Time theme Winter Wonderland is perfect for our current weather conditions around here. I am ready for May and it isn't even December yet. Last week the kids and I did not leave the house all week because of the snow and school age kids here had two days off school....in November!! So with the cold snow all around I can't think of anything better to do than warm up a cup of coffee and dive into December's Winter Wonderland and see what we have to look forward to.

As always our preschool curriculum arrived in a school bus box. This month the box was a little taller than usual. Which peaked my curiosity immediately. Upon opening the box I realized it was due to a hard back book that was included written by Mother Goose Time's very own Leslie Falconer The Great Mountain Hike. So I guess that is where we will start our Winter Wonderland exploration. 

Library-Style Story Time Book, Every Month
We are introduced to this beautiful book on day nine. Before reading the book you will discuss why it is difficult to live at the top of a mountain. You will find that the book actually has five mini stories. The kids get to enjoy a chapter each day after day nine. On day 13 students will revisit the story when talking about the arctic animal, a yak. After experimenting with building a tall mountain your students will use the Story Sequence Wands and put the story in order. On day 14 students get to act out the story in their assigned roles with the Little Theater Script. You can find other suggested books for this unit here.

125 Active Discovery Tools, Every Month
  My children have really enjoyed discovering the manipulatives (and other Child Discovery Tools) that are sent each month with the Mother Goose Time curriculum. I think they are going to be really excited this month to see what is in store. On day four students will discuss how an igloo is made. They then will explore ice and salt and find how it sticks and melts. They will also be able to use the manipulative cubes provided by Mother Goose Time and try to make their own igloo. Students will be able to do their own discovering throughout the month with Mother Goose Time's Discover Science cards. They will learn about ramps, how a polar bear stays warm, and how to create slushy water. 

13+ Art Projectons, Every Month
 One of Mother Goose Time's Bonus Days this month is titled Christmas Tree. One of the activities this day is for the kids to make their own Christmas tree ornament. Students will also create their own spruce tree on day seven. They will first discuss how tall a spruce tree is. They then will use the supplies provided by Mother Goose Time to create their own spruce tree they can hang up. On day four while students are learning about igloos they will use white squares and snowflake confetti to create their own igloo. 

33 Skills Built. Every Month
Children will discover another manipulative provided by Mother Goose Time on day 12. While working on their math skills students will use math story cards and bear counting manipulatives. Students will follow the directions on the math story cards and use the counting bears to help to solve each math problem. On day five students will be introduced to the activity Frozen Treasures. Students will use pictures and letters to match the appropriate card to letters I, P, and T. 

20 Brand New Sing-Along Songs, Every Month

Hear a sample of this month's CD here!

If your child enjoys Mother Goose Time's music CDs provided every month check out Mother Goose Time's Dance n' Beats curriculum. A new series is available every month that goes along with the monthly theme.

Parents Want the Best, Every Month
 Caregivers are provided with a monthly Family Newsletter they can give to parents each month. This month's newsletter introduces parents to this month's book The Great Mountain Hike and gives a suggested book list. It also gives parents tips on how to boost their child's confidence and self-esteem. Lastly, it suggests at home activities parents can do with their children outside of preschool. More Family Connect Tools can be found here.

Child-led Exploration, Every Month
 At the bottom of many of the activities there are suggestions on how to simplify or make an activity more challenging. I feel I mostly need to simplify the activities for my 20 month old. I find that Mother Goose Time's Little Goose curriculum is very helpful for finding things I can do with just her while my three year old does the other activities in the curriculum. If you are finding your child needs more of a challenge please check out Mother Goose Time's More Math and Literacy.

Discover Games, Every Month
 Do you want to build a snowman? Frozen, anybody? On day two children will determine what size of a snowman they want to build. They then will use the snowman cards to create their own snowman. They then can use the cards in a matching game by trying to find the three cards that will match to make a snowman in the example cards. On day 15 while learning about the arctic fox students will discover berries hidden around the room. They then will use a spinner and gather berries in their basket. 
New My Little Journal, Every Month
 Students will start their journey with their My Little Journal on day three. They will be asked to draw a picture of themselves in a wintry scene. They will revisit their journal throughout the month. For more writing practice please check out Mother Goose Time's More Literacy resource.

New I Can Read, Every Month
 Children will work on their reading skill on day 15 with their very own I Can Read book. Students will focus on three letters and three sight words throughout the month that are also focused on in the I Can Read book. I keep our letter and sight word flowers close during circle time and we look at them each time we do circle time. Many of the resources I use for our circle time are from Mother Goose Time's Welcome Kit. The kids especially love our Circle Time CD. When it starts to play they know it is time to start the day!

New Letters, Numbers, and Shapes, Every Month! 
This month students will explore the letters P, T, and I, numbers 4 and 14, the color white, and the shape square. Students will visit the letter sets over and over again throughout the month. They are a great long time addition to your learning space also. 

New Friendship Feathers, Every Month
 This month children will focus on being responsible. On day six students will talk about what it means to be responsible. Students will discuss what they think are some important hiking rules. They then will act out how they can enforce those rules. At the end they will earn their "I am responsible" bracelet. 

Monthly Skills Chart, Every Month
 A helpful skills chart and gathering list are included every month. The skills chart is a great piece to hang where parents can see. I refer to the gathering list each week before I go to the grocery store. 

Teacher Guide with Built-in Assessment, Extensions, Every Month
 This month their is a new resource included in our box. It is a calendar with each days activities listed on it (bottom left corner). I think this will be a very useful resource throughout the month. You can find other resources under Member Resources on Mother Goose Time's website. The member code is included in your Teacher Guide each month.There are many other Teacher Tools included each month that makes the learning more interesting and the planning much easier!!

With it being the end of the year I thought I would mention Mother Goose Time does provide Progress Monitoring Reports on their website. If you want to see where your students are at after a few months with Mother Goose Time I would suggest looking into these booklets.

There is still time to order your very own Winter Wonderland or you can start your new year off with Mother Goose Time's Dinosaur Dig curriculum!! Not sure if you want to dive all the way in yet? Check out one of Mother Goose Time's samples!!

I received curriculum from Mother Goose Time for honest and authentic stories resulting from my daily experiences in using the curriculum. I applied to be an official Mother Goose Time blogger and will continue to share my experiences throughout the 2014/15 school year.

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