Sunday, August 30, 2009

Tot School # 4

~ C1 is 13 months & 1 week ~

Tot School

C1 enjoyed his first yummy scrummy super healthy Green Slime Ice Block this week. You can read all about them on my other blog if you like.

They were super cold and he sure pulled plenty of funny faces but he couldn't get enough of his little ice cube sized block. I'm so glad they were a hit all round!

It's funny isn't how they pick and choose the things they are interested in. This little rocking horse is always around somewhere, but this week he has been on and off it every single day.

Once again with his wire beaded maze. He played for ages and ages with this. Moving the beads this way and that.

He had his cousins 2nd Birthday Party at a park today so certainly had lots of fun and lots of exploration. It's nice to have Grandma and Grandad at the park also to play with.

Now some of you might want to close your eyes for these photo's, they include a daredevil baby in action. And no it wasn't me encouraging this either!!!

Yes he is covered in blue icing from the cake and yes he is about to go head first down the slide. eeeekkk!!!

But look at this face. Pure joy, he was so excited to be doing this. His little belly must of being doing somersaults inside.

Don't forget to catch me dad!

C1 also tried his hand with the Magndoodle this week and loved it. I didn't get any photo's though. I'll try again next week.

But the most exciting thing that happened this week was he took some steps. Just a couple at a time but he did it and obviously I didn't have my camera ready so no snaps of that I'm sorry. He'll be running around the back yard before I know!

To see what everyone else has been getting up to in Tot School jump over to 1+1+1=1.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Coming To An End

Well our very first season of Soccer is nearing an end. It has also been our very first season participating in any kind of group (team based) sport.

I must admit that I wasn't overly happy about B7 signing up with Soccer. I felt (and in all honestly still do) that he is far too young to be able to fully participate and meet the needs of the team in a group based sport.

Not that he lacks the soccer skills I just feel that at 7 years of age children don't have all of the social and emotional skills one needs to not only focus on your own skills, but those of the team. They also are required to listen and follow the coach and the umpire at each game. Not too mention the competitive nature of team sports and the dealing with other children in general.

It is just a lot to have to take in and alot to ask of someone so young. I am totally gobsmacked at the amount of 5 year old's that are out there running around on the soccer field. They struggle to even understand what they need to do with the ball, let alone be able to work as a team. Obviously there is always exceptions to this and I have witnessed some fabulous little soccer players that will no doubt grow up being a valuable asset to the club.

However he (and his dad) really wanted to give it a try. So I relented. Who am I to stand in his way. We talked alot at the beginning of the season about having fun and being sure to enjoy every training session and every game. I feel very strongly that at this young age it must be all about having fun! Win or lose it makes no difference.

Whilst I still think he is too young and granted that I have not attended that many games this season (the baby always needed a sleep) he has really enjoyed it. The overall feel of the club (at least with the juniors) is that of fun and friendship. Every adult that I have seen deal with the children have always ensured that the kids needs are met and have never been concerned with the 'winning' of the game.

I'd have to say that in general it has been a very successful first season of soccer and of team sports in general.

Even daddy had the opportunity to umpire and this week coming he is coaching the boys as their regular coach has other commitments.

B7 has enjoyed the season and wants to play again next year, which is totally fine by me (if that is what he really wants to do). In the meantime we are trying lots of other things, (tennis, drama etc) never know something else might catch his interest before the next soccer season arrives and I won't have to worry about him when the next season comes around.

Hey, I wouldn't be a mum if I didn't worry about these things!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Flat Stanley Fun

We're particpating in the Flat Stanley Project that Gabrielle from Work of Childhood is organising. I'm so excited and I haven't even told the kids yet. We actually have never read the book so I'm off to find us a copy of it.

There's still time to join in, hop on over to Work of Childhood and find out all of the details, but hurry it closes soon.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Preschool Corner: Writing In Sand & Sound Cylinders

I don't have a great deal of photo's for Preschool Corner this week but you'll understand why if you read my latest Tot School post.

I did however manage to finally paint the tray I have had here for ages for K5 to use as a Sandwriting Tray, alongside her Sandpaper Letters.

She really enjoys using this tray and it has made such a difference with her letter recognition. I just grabbed one of those bare, unpainted trays and gave it a spray of blue paint and some sand. Simple really!
Our sound cylinders also got a work out this week. Another favourite for her.

First you simply take all the cylinders out of the box. Choose two, listen to the sound whilst shaking. If you think they're a match place them together back in the box. Otherwise just keep on listening and shaking.

Here she is using the self checking feature to see how she went. And no she doesn't get them all right all of the time. It always depends on the noise level in the room at the time, her own concentration level and how she tired she is.

We painted a very bubbly, blue B, using bubble wrap instead of a paintbrush. This will get added to her Alphabet Wall she is slowly creating.

If you've been keeping up you will know that we have been learning about all things 'buggy'. What perfect timing to also look more closely at the letter b.

This is the bug patterning activity I put together for her one day.

These beads she got for her birthday so since we were looking at 'B' we dug them out to do some beading. They were actually a little tricky for her as they are wooden beads and the holes aren't perfect.

She got there in the end though.

K5 also played with our Monkey Math. You need to balance the monkey with the same amount of banana's on either side. I only pull out the banana's up to 5 at the moment, once she is working well with those we will add in the remaining banana's up to 10.

What did your preschooler get up to this week? You can see more Preschool Corner posts at Jolanthe's blog.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Bugs and Creepy Crawlies: Part 2

We are still well and truly powering along our study of Insects and all things buggy! In case you missed the first instalment, you can revisit it here if you like.

B7 (in case you don't already know) is mad keen on Lego. I guess what 7 year old boy isn't! So what does one do when playing lego and learning about bugs, make Lego Bugs of course.

Quite obviously a bee, this actually took a couple of attempts and a couple of hours sitting with dear old mum just sorting black and yellow pieces. Hence they are now in a large ziplock baggie. This dear old mum was not sitting for nearly 2 hours sorting lego, only to have the pieces dumped back into the unsorted container.

As a side note, I'd love to see how you all organise your Lego. We have enough here to fill a small store and it is beginning to drive me crazy. So any tips will be gratefully received.

A Rhinoceros Beetle, funnily enough this one came together really very quickly. I would have thought that the bee was going to be easier, I guess you never can tell when it comes to lego model making.

What perfect timing! Currclicks weekly newsletter had a packet of Mini Books all on Insects on sale, from Notebooking Nook. They've been great as they have allowed us to still continue in what ever path we choose and we then simply grab the appropriate mini book and add the details we want.

Even though the kids know the Life Cycle of Butterfly down pat, they chose to complete this mini book anyway.

We talked about Entomology, looked up the meaning in the dictionary and discussed what entomologists do.

Insects have so many wonderful and exciting homes, they live in some truly weird places.

We talked about some of the reasons why Insects Communicate with each other.

I made up this quick Ladybug Beetle Maths Sheet for B7, starting with a simple addition word problem and finishing with a more complex subtraction problem. (which reminds me I have created a few downloadable bits and pieces of late, hopefully I will find some time soon to add them to my other blog Free Homeschool Printables)

And Bug Patterning with clip art that I put together for K5. I included simple AB and ABC Patterns and also decided to add in a ABCD pattern just to see how she handled it. With a small amount of guidance she loved this activity.

This In Touch With Nature book I picked up on a throw out table some time back. It has some neat and simple outdoor activities that we hope to get to over the next few days.

I also whipped up this simple Shape Bugs sheet. The kids had to cut the shapes out and stick them together to create a bug.

B7's Butterfly (don't ask my why this is on its side because it wasn't before). I was kinda hoping he would use the squares and rectangles to make a funky fun looking bug but he isn't that much into abstract creations. If he is creating a butterfly then it has to look like a butterfly.

K5 decided that she didn't want to make bugs so she made Entomologists instead ;-)

B7 completed a quick Ants notebooking page.

A couple of water coloured images he finished whilst listening to read alouds.

And then there's this book we found. Looks interesting huh! It is a pop up, lift the flap book with some fantastic images inside. A great book, a feast for the eyes that's for sure.

But it also has sound effects. Check this out.

I won't spoil it by showing anymore, you'll have to go find the book for yourself.

Well I had thought that this would be the last part to our Bug study but B7 has informed me that he wants to continue on with learning about insects next week as well. Stay tuned for Part 3 of Bugs and Creepy Crawlies.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tot School # 3

~ C1 is 12 months & 3 weeks ~

Tot School

Our baby is in serious teething mode at the moment and we haven't had the best of weeks. In fact he basically spent the entire week in my arms, his poor little gums have been so sore.

I had thought that he cut all 4 of his 12 month molars but either they have gone back down or only two had actually come through in the first place.

It's definitely been a tough week for both of us and it looks like the teething is still going. Grabbing a camera was the last thing on my mind and anyway, there wasn't much Tot School snaps to take, since he was on my hip the majority of the time.

I did manage to get these, yes the photo's are terrible, obviously my lack of sleep is showing in my photography skills!!

This little 'horsey' is a hand me down from his Aunty and although he struggled at first he quickly mastered the technique of climbing on and off. Moving, well that's another story, it doesn't help that he can only just get his little toes to touch the floor though!
That's it from me this week and considering this post is already a few days late I doubt I will make Tot School next week. Hopefully in a week or so all teething will have settled and things can get back to normal.

We have still being going 'buggy' around here, although I haven't taken many photo's, I will be back soon to post an update.

Make sure you check out the other Tot Schoolers over at Carissa's blob.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Suncatcher Butterflies

This is an oldie but a goodie and another oh so easy craft for any age. You can also turn it into Suncatcher 'anything' they don't need to be butterflies.

All you need is:

Clear Contact Paper
Tissue Paper
Pipe Cleaner

Step 1: Lay out clear contact and place pieces of coloured tissue paper on to sticcy side of contact. You can also add glitter and other sprkly things if you wish.

Step 2: Cover with a second piece of clear contact paper so that the tissue paper is now 'stuck' between the contact.

Step 3: Draw a rough outline of your butterfly (or other design) if you wish. You can always just cut free hand. We used a dry erase marker so the outline could easily be wiped away.

Step 4:
Cut around the outline.

Step 5: Twist a pipe cleaner around the middle of the butterfly to form the body and the antenna.

The butterfly can be stuck directly to the window, hung from the ceiling or a mobile or as in our case a diorama.
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