Thursday, May 13, 2010

M is for Mother

On May 4th we learned more about the letter M. They started by coloring the covers of the cookbooks for mom. You can see what's on the inside at the end of the post!

Then we got working on our other Mother's Day gift. We mashed strawberries,
measured how much we needed,
measured the sugar,
and mixed it all together. I poured in the hot pectin mixture and they mixed it in well. I put the freezer jam into tupperware containers and they were ready for mom!

We read the books Are You My Mother and If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.

Next, we talked about Mexico and Cinco de Mayo. We decorated marvelous maracas with stickers (white address labels and red & green price circles) to marginally resemble the Mexican flag.

Side note: I made these from large plastic Easter eggs. These conveniently had holes in the bottom and I just used a knife to make a slit between them. (I tried slicing one that didn't have the holes, but the plastic was a different kind and the whole thing shattered!)
I then pushed a plastic fork (I didn't have any spoons on hand) down through the slit and glue gunned it in place. I filled the top with rice and snapped the egg together. Using electrical tape, I sealed the thing shut.

For our snack we munched English muffins with butter and our marvelous, newly made strawberry freezer jam on them.

Right at the end, the kids enjoyed moving through the masking tape maze that I had set up in our music room (our formal living room lacks seating and has only a piano and an antique stereo for furniture :)

I knew we wouldn't have time for this craft during preschool, but afterward I had Christian color a paper plate mosquito mask. He loved using the straw "mouth" to drink "blood" red punch!

And now I have to show off my student's masterpieces:
and the pages of the cookbook:

Aren't they adorable?? You should be able to click on the pages to get a larger view.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

N is for Nest

On April 27th we learned about the letter N. We started our day by going on a nature walk and collecting nature in our bags that we could use for our nests. Even though it was super windy, the kids didn't want to come in they were having so much fun!

Finally back inside after nearly being blown away, we glued our items from nature onto our rolled down sacks to make nests.

For a little added nonsense, we made neat footprint birds to go in them :)

We read lots of Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes and even practiced reciting a few.
For snack, we strung nifty cereal necklaces. We used Froot Loops and Chocolate Cheerios. Maybe you can see the lines of cereal on the table that I used to work on patterning with them.

I got a little needlessly perfect with mine :D
Next, we made noisemakers. We took so long on our nature walk and nests that Porter and Breck had left at noon, but we sent the supplies with them! I already had the noodles strung and tied on a loop of string, and Christian loved threading one end of the loop through the holes and putting the noodle through to attach it.

We decorated them with stickers and then made some noise!

I had them roll long triangles of newspaper (we used the comics) onto a pencil, starting with the wide end, and glue the point down with a glue stick. They then pulled the newspaper bead off of the pencil and strung it on a necklace.


Lastly, I had them practice writing numbers (or more correctly, writing numerals) on a worksheet I'd made. Sierra did a great job and Christian decided to just draw a picture on the back {sigh}.

I'm pretty proud of the worksheet, all the numbered items start with N!

n numbers

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

E is for Earth

On April 20th we learned about letter E. We started out by playing this exercise game.
Exercise Game

I spread these squares out on the floor and had the child throw a beanbag to find out what exercise to do. They then spun a spinner (I used the one from Chutes and Ladders) to see how many reps were required! Kynan got jumping.

I think Christian got stretching. The kids loved this game!

For out first craft, I gave them each an old CD and a push pin and had them scratch, or etch a design into it.

After adding recycled cereal box ears and some google eyes, they could put their finger through the middle to be the trunk of the elephant.

We read the Little Critter book "It's Earth Day!" and talked about ways we can help the earth. I told them that when we use less electricity that it conserves energy and is good for the earth. We colored these mini posters that can be put by a light switch to help us remember.
For snack we molded Rice Crispy Earths out of green and blue treats.

I had them sharpen crayons over waxed paper and then ironed a second sheet to the top for these Earth suncatchers.

We also made flowers out of recycled egg cartons.

This is a counting game where you "feed" the elephants peanuts.

At the end of class, we had an earth-friendly recycling activity. The "recycling truck" was full of colored legos that had to be sorted into the matching color cup.

Lots of recycled materials were used (as usual around here) and we learned a little about being good to our Earth!

Monday, May 10, 2010

S is for Seeds

On April 13th we learned about the letter S. Here are the kids yelling, "Surprise!"

They made spiral snake mobiles and we talked about how the letter S makes the sound of a snake, sssss.

Still trying to use up our pumpkin pie playdough, I had them roll spheres out of the squishy, smelly (in a good way!) stuff. I then had them stick chenille stems in for legs of a spider, using at least one silver sparkly one and the rest the color of their choosing.

Next, I had them spin a spiderweb of yarn around colored craft sticks that I'd hot glued in advance. Here is Miss Joy's perfect one.
The kids' webs looked really great, too and they were so proud! Here are their superb finished spiders and spiderwebs.

For snack we made snail sandwiches. You start by squishing a slice of bread with a rolling pin. The kids loved using my heavy marble one!
Second, spread it with strawberry jam (I got the wrong one out of the freezer so we used raspberry-peach :).

Then simply roll it up and stick in pretzels for the antennae. They look so cute with their swirled shells! The kids loved these and each ate two or more. They were a delicious, albeit STICKY snack!

Our next project was smiley face styrofoam stamps. I just cut circles out of a styrofoam food tray and had the kids use a ballpoint pen to draw a smiling picture of themselves. We then colored the stamp with a marker and had them stamp it.

Look at my cute class!

We planted seeds at the end of class. First we put in the soil,

then sowed the seeds.

Sierra was the only child I could interest in size sorting the snowmen, she did such a super job!

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