Saturday, October 26, 2013

E is for Eggs

I was having a tough time coming up with E ideas, so my amazing husband did some brainstorming and came up with this week's themes.

Day 1

We kicked off the week with the "Clap, Clap, Clap," song by Carol Peterson.  Then practiced a finger play that he had been learning in Sunday School. It goes like this,

"Open, shut them, open, shut them,
Give a little clap!
Open, shut them, open shut them,
put them in your lap."

Next, we counted to 20, and then worked with the number flashcards.  He now recognizes 1-5 in text form, so I had him clip clothespins to the numbers.  More fine-motor practice!

We reviewed the past weeks' letters and verses.  Letter E is the first letter that Parker is actually learning for the first time.  When he sings the ABC's, he always says, A-B-C-D-A-F-G.  We practiced singing it the correct way, and then learned this week's verse,
"Every good and perfect gift is from above. James 1:17"

For our intro to letter E activity, I put the dots on the board again like I did with letter A, except this time he had to match the colors, too.    

Then we read

We made our own Elmer by gluing squares to the elephant.  It was Parker's first time with the glue stick.  He loved putting glue everywhere, but was not eager to cover the whole elephant with squares ;)

Parker really liked Elmer, so we read


 Day 2
 We spent the morning at a friend's house today, so we squeezed in a little bit of preschool after nap time...which is now called "quiet rest time" since he doesn't think he needs to sleep =)  We sang songs, reviewed letter E and it's verse, counted to 20, and then read

The night before, I filled two plastic eggs with rice, two with noodles, and the same with puff balls, money and raisins.  I laid them all out for Parker and guided him through the process of matching up the sounds.  He chose one to start with, shook it, and then shook all the rest of find its match.  When he thought he got it, we opened them up to see what was inside.  He had a lot of fun with this one.

(Now they are taped shut and in his instrument box).

Then we read

to see how animals ears are different than ours.  Did you know a crickets have ears on their legs?

Day 3
We sang some new songs today.  Of course they are both by Carol Peterson.  The first was, "Everybody Clap Your Hands."  This is similar to the other clapping songs, but it requires you to do more than one thing at a time.  By the end of the song, you are clapping, stamping, and turning around.  We also sang, "Shine, Shine, Shine."  It's really fun to dance to, and talks about letting your light shine bright!

Before we started, I hid 10 egg halves around the living room.  Each half had either an upper or lowercase letter on it.  Parker hunted for them.  Once he found all ten, he had to match up the uppercase letters to the lowercase letters.

 Next, we read

I totally love this book.  It's a rhyming book, which is always fun, and it does a great job of describing other animals' eggs.  It even ends with the word "oviparous," so we talked about what that means and what a mammal is.  We read it twice.  Then I got out some cards that I made with different animal pictures on them.  All the oviparous animals were ones in the book, and the mammals were ones he is familiar with.  He did a great job sorting them out!

Then we read

which goes a little more in depth about each animal's nest, size of egg, etc.

Finally, we made deviled eggs.

We ate them so fast I didn't even get a picture!

 We also read


throughout the week.

Monday, October 21, 2013

D is for Dr. Seuss

It's always fun trying to figure out what is worth learning for each letter.   I went through a lot of options for Letter D, and these are what I decided on.  

Day 1
We started out D week with a few songs we had already learned by Carol Peterson.  Then we learned another one of her songs, "My Pet Dinosaur."  This is a great little tune because it involves hitting a drum and it's rather short, so you can do it several times.  

 I got out the flashcards for numbers 1-10.  We counted while I flipped through them, and then we went over numbers 1, 2, and 3 so he could start recognizing them in text form.  We reviewed letters A, B and C, and their verses, and then I introduced the letter D flashcard.  Parker knew that Daddy started with D.  How cute!  Then I read and he repeated this week's verse, 
"Do to others as you would have them do to you.  Matthew 7:12."  

We moved to the table for the letter activity.  I cut out D's and laid out dot stickers for him to stick all over them.  Fine-motor practice!

He stuck a few to his face.

Then we read 

Cute, but very inaccurate.  
(Who decided that a cat always needs to be saved?  Has that ever even happened in real life?)  

Then we worked on dot patterns.  I laid out some patterns on construction paper beforehand just so they were easier to see. 

I said the first pattern for Parker, "big, little, big, little, big..." and he found the next one.  For the others, I pointed to the dots and he said the colors with me and then finished the patterns.  

Day 2
After songs, and reviewing numbers, letter D and the verse, it was time to learn about Dr. Seuss.  We have several Dr. Seuss books that we read on a regular basis, so I had Parker get those out and told him they were all written by Dr. Seuss.  I wanted to read one he had not read before.    

I chose

He laughed a lot at the names of the places and the people.  Then we looked at the spine of all the books and saw the Cat in the Hat.  We noted that his hat is always red and white striped.

We moved to the table for this Dr. Seuss matching activity. Find the original here.  It was pretty hard.  I suggest cutting apart the original and gluing the hats on a separate sheet with a little space in between so you can see them better.

Finally, we made a banana-strawberry kabob to look like the hat.  Good pictures eh?

Day 3
Parker is really liking this week's verse.  He starts off kind of soft and slow and by the end he is rather loud and points when he gets to "YOU!"  We have been able to talk about this verse really means and I really hope it comes in handy for him in the future.  I was reading last week about how Jesus was able to withstand the temptation in the desert because His mind was so saturated with the Old Testament that most of His words were directly from it.  He fought satan with scripture and won.  So, I think the reason I want to teach these verses to Parker is so when temptation comes his way, he can fight it with the living and active WORD!  That's my prayer.

Day 3 was Dinosaur Day.  We started with a Stegosaurus Math Game.  Ryan designed our little dino friend.  He's got skills.  First, we talked about how dinosaur starts with D, and then I told him a little bit about the Stegosaurus and explained the game to him.  He rolled a dice and put that number of plates on the dinosaur's back.  Then I rolled the other dice and did the same.  Finally, we counted how many plates the Stegosaurus had altogether.

 Then we read a fun, fold-out book.

 It's great for people like us who know nothing about dinosaurs.

Throughout the week, we also read


 and other various Dr. Seuss books.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

C is for Corn

I grew up on a farm, so every September and October of my childhood was spent riding with my dad, uncles, brother, and cousins in the combine, grain cart, and semi.  Parker had his first ride when he was just nine days old.  From then on, he's been incredibly interested in everything farming.  My husband and I had the honor of spending an entire week at my parents to help bring in the harvest.  That's why C is for Corn!  I had so many ideas for C week!  We did have three solid preschool times, and then I just squeezed in some other C activities and books when I could.  It was a super fun week!

Day 1
We started off, like usual, with songs.  Parker requested Sticky Bubble Gum, and then we learned a new one called, "Clap, Clap, Clap," by Carol Peterson.  Then we reviewed letters A and B and their verses, and I introduced the letter C card.  We learned our new verse,
"Children obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.  Colossians 3:20," 
and we talked about what that means.  We moved into the living room where I had the letter C activity set up.

Then we talked about how 'car,' starts with C, and he drove the cars on the tape.

While he did that, I set up the paint for the car art.  
He dipped the car wheels in paint and then drove them on the paper.  

It turned out a little different than I thought imagined, but here's the finished product.

After he finished washing the cars in the sink, we came back to the living room to listen to

The music is by Camille Saint-Saens, and Jack Prelutsky wrote a poem for each member of the carnival.  I absolutely love this music. It is catchy, fun, and it has so many recognizable sounds that go with the animals.  Parker's favorite was the lion's roar.  We decided it'd be fun to act like the animals when we listened to their part of the music.  We listened to a few animals each day of the week.

That night, we rode in the combine

and later read,

(By the way, if you are ever looking for a great book for a certain non-fiction topic, Gail is your girl!)

Day 2
Caterpillar Day!  We started by singing "Fuzzy, Wuzzy Caterpillar/Butterfly."  It's a cute little song to introduce the caterpillar's life journey.  Then we did a caterpillar number match.  Just to be clear, Parker doesn't know what numbers look like in text.  This is to designed to start teaching that.  We pointed to the numbers while we counted, Parker matched them all up visually, and then we pointed and counted again.  

Then we read the famous,

Before we started reading, I told Parker to pay close attention to the different stages of the caterpillar's life.  After I read it once, I went back to the beginning and helped him tell the story by pointing to the pictures and prompting him.  Then we reviewed the life stages of the caterpillar and made a project out of it.

A bean for the egg, puff balls for the caterpillar, wound up yarn for the cocoon (I wrote chrysalis but the book says cocoon), and fingerprints for the butterfly.  

While we were making it, my dad walked in and Parker told him the whole story.  "There was an egg by the light of the moon.  Then he was a caterpillar.  He ate some pie, salami, chocolate cake, a lollipop...a lotta lotta stuff, and then he got a stomach ache.  Then he ate a nice green leaf and he felt better.  He went in to the cocoon for two week and came out a beautiful butterfly!"  Nice job, Parker!

Then we colored Thank You cards for his birthday presents.

Day 3 
My mom and Ryan were around that morning, so we we all sang songs together.  Then Ryan read,

 It is such a cute book!  One of my dad's favorite snacks to eat in the field is chocolate chip cookies, so we just had to make them =)  We delivered them to the field, and Parker rode for the rest of the day.

 Later that week, we also played in the corn.  Talk about a sensory experience eh?

 And we brought some home with us, too.

We also read

I really love doing this with him =)