We traced and colored Christmas trees, built snowmen using the letters in their names, painted a sparkly winter scene, and colored a mitten. We have been reading The Mitten and There Was A Cold Lady Who Swallowed some Snow.
Birds come in many different colors and varieties. In this invitation to create, children were give a photo of two birds that had some similar and different traits. Through art, we can celebrate our differences because that is what makes us all beautiful. Children decorated the birds and then arranged them on paper. They made choices about various textures to enhance their art and also problem-solved how to keep the textures attached to the paper.
We also fed the birds in our sensory bin! We used clothes pin to pick up the worms (pipe cleaners) to feed the birds.
Children love learning about animals. The topic of pets can be especially engaging and relatable for children as they may have personal experience with a pet already. Since pets are animals that can typically be seen in a child's own environment, children may have existing knowledge that they are excited to share and expand on. While learning about pets, children can explore the concepts of respecting living things and begin to understand what their basic needs are. Just like people, pets need food, water shelter and love. We also discussed just like people need to visit the doctor pets go to the vet.
There are hundreds of different breeds of dogs in many colors and sizes. Dogs are a common pet to have in a household and make excellent companions. Some dogs can learn tricks. Dogs can make many different sounds when they bark. The younger children made dog shakers, we filled a tube with beans and the older children made dog puppets.
Cats are popular pets. They are known to sleep for most of the day but can be very playful as well. Cats' whiskers help them sense their surroundings and their long tail helps them balance. We created our own cat headbands.
Goldfish are a common type of pet fish. They are able to live many years if cared for properly, and prefer to live with at least one other goldfish in their tank. Many people are surprised to discover that goldfish are quite smart and can display unique personalties. We created a fishbowl using markers, pipe cleaners, paper and tissue paper.
We wrapped up our week making circles, sorting shapes and fine motor skills. We used paper towel rolls and paint to create a circle collage. We sorted shapes as a group and individually. They asked to play with the fine motor jars and ended up playing with these for well over an hour!
We have been talking about people who are most important to us. We talked about all our different family members and pets and then we built a house and put the people that we live with in our homes.
We used q-tips to paint, worked on shapes and color recognition. This month we are learning about circles and the color red. I also introduced the kids to paint sticks! I think I was more excited than they were. The colors are amazing and the paint dries very quickly. I found these gems at Michael's and will definitely be going back for more!
I laminated 6 different colors of card stock with a house printed on each to coordinate with the family counters. There were no instructions at the center. I simply invited the children to play. One child put all the babies in one home. Without knowing it, she was actually practicing important sorting skills!
We practiced forming letters using loose letter parts when were were done with this activity one of the kiddos asked if he could trace letters. Of course, I pulled out the expo markers and letters. Once he started tracing his friends quickly followed! They also put blank paper in the page protectors and drew whatever they wanted to draw, erased and repeated. They also drew self portraits using crayons, markers and paint sticks!
Families are like trees because they are connected together and strong. Families are all unique and different. We read the book Me and My Family Tree by Joan Sweeney.
We created our own family tree. During this Invitation to Create, children made a tree to represent their family. They made decisions about how many branches, apples and what colors to include. We also played a Family Counting game. We took turns rolling the cube and pushing the same number of people sticks into play dough. We also clipped a clothespin on the matching counting card. For STEM we used family counters and blocks to build houses!
Halloween week! Black cats, witches, cute monsters, pumpkins, sensory bins, dancing and a whole lot more!
The older kids (5-8 years) completed a directed drawing of a Black Cat. The younger kiddos made an art project to go along with the book Five Little Pumpkins. We also used finger paints and once dried added eye ball stickers to make monsters!
The highlight of my week was observing the kids playing their own version of Scaredy Cat, a color and number recognition game! It was so cute to see them playing and reciting on their own. We've been playing Scaredy Cat the last couple of weeks, I would hide the cat behind a pail when the kids closed their eyes and we would recite the poem "Scaredy Cat, Scaredy Cat hiding from me. He's in a pail. Which one could it be?" and they would take turns guessing the location of the "Scaredy Cat!" (This game is from Jaime White's Pumpkin Circle Time Unit on TPT).
We made pumpkins, worked on number recognition, visual discrimination, scissor skills and had so much fun!
We put squishy balls, paper, paint in a container and shook it all up! Once dried, if the child wanted, I cut their painted paper into the shape of a pumpkin. Normally, the kids cut out their own art work. However, we are still working on scissor skills so this time I cut out the pumpkins. They made the stem either by tearing or cutting themselves. For the younger children, I cut the stem and they chose where they wanted to place on their pumpkin.
Visual discrimination is the ability to recognize the details in visual images. These details include the likeness and differences of objects or symbols including shapes and colors as well as size and orientation. We worked on this with file folder games! Young children in preschool need to have good visual discrimination skills to begin identifying letters and numbers by name.
Play dough and plastic pattern block pumpkins. I made orange play dough, gave the kiddos plastic pattern blocks and they created jack-o-lantern faces!