Wednesday, April 15, 2015

All About Me: My Name

Here are some ways that tots and preschoolers can learn to recognize their name, the letters in their name, trace their name, copy their name and write their name.

All About Me
Subcategory: My name
Color: green & blue (my children's favorite colors)
Shape: circle
Number:  6 (the amount of letters in their first name)
Letter: Cc & Ll (what their first names start with)
Opposite words:  first/last
Texture:  

Art:  
1. Name collage: Write name(s) in big letters on a piece of paper.  Have children glue small circles (weekly shape) on top of the letters.
2. Letter collage: magazines, scissors, glue, paper.  Help child(ren) cut out pictures that start with the first letter in their name. Glue the pictures to the paper.
3. Watercolor name: With a white crayon write child's name on paper.  Have them paint on the paper with watercolor paint and watch their name magically appear!
4. Make Valentines for friends.  Encourage or assist child to write their name on each Valentine.
5. 3D Name: Write name on paper. Have child(ren) glue dry beans, corn, pom poms, googly eyes, cereal, etc. on top of the letters.

Books:

Cooking: green & blue jello

Dramatic Play: 
1. School
2. Post office: write letters to family and friends (don't forget to write who it's from)

Fine motor:  
1. Trace name: write name on strip of paper.  Have child place paper on their magnetic drawing board and use the magnetic pencil to trace name.  Take paper off to see their name on the magnetic board.
2. Sticker name: Write name on paper in big letters.  Have child(ren) put stickers on top of their name.
3. Tactile name: Write child's name in Elmer's glue (thick) onto paper.  After it is dry have child place another paper on top of the glue name and rub a crayon on the top paper.  Watch their name magically appear!
4. Rainbow Name: Write name on paper.  Have child(ren) trace name with red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple.

Gross motor:  
1. Letter hop: Using chalk write letters in the driveway. Have child jump from letter to letter.
2. Form letters using your body



Language:
1. Tracing: Fill zip-loc bag with hair gel and tape shut. Place paper with name under bag.  Have child trace with their finger on top of the bag to write their name.
2. Block name: provide letter blocks for your child to spell out their name

Math: Letter count: count how many letters are in their name 

Music:  "Willoughby walliby" by Raffi :
Willoughby walliby wee
An elephant sat on me
Willoughby walliby woo
An elephant sat on you
Willoughbly Walliby Wusten
An elephant sat on Justin
Willoughby Walliby Wangya
An elephant sat on Tanya
Willoughby Walliby Wenny
An elephant sat on Jenny
Willoughby Walliby Woal
An elephant sat on Joel
Willoughby Walliby Wong
I hope that you sing along
Willoughby Walliby Week
A singa linga longa with me!
A ratatatatat A neenaanananana
A doodaleedoodadoo
A badabadabadada!
Willoughby Walliby Wonny
An elephant sat on Bonny
Willoughby Walliby Warton
An elephant sat on Martin
Willoughby Walliby Woosen
An elephant sat on Susan
Willoughby Walliby Wennis
An elephant sat on Dennis
Willoughby Walliby Wen
An elephant sat on Ken
Willoughby Walliby Waffi
An elephant sat on Raffi
Willoughby Walliby Willoughby
Oooh, look at that elephant sitten there
Willoughby Walliby Willoughby aWallilalalalalala
*Lyrics found here


Outside time: 
1. Sand name: write/trace name in sandbox with finger or stick
2. Write/trace name with chalk 
3. Draw things that start with the letter in their name using chalk
4. Squirt letters: Write letters with chalk.  Have child(ren) find and squirt the letter with a squirt gun.

Science:  

Sensory:  
1. Play-dough name: add letter stamps to play-dough time. Stamp name in play-dough
2. Letter hunt: put foam letters, magnet letters, or block letters, etc. into sensory bin with rice, corn, or beans, etc.
3. Play-dough with letter cookie cutters
4. Make letters with play-dough "snakes"

Feelings theme ideas

There are so many feelings to explore. I believe that this is a very important theme because children need to learn to express how they are feeling with their words. It is okay for everyone to feel every feeling and it is important to learn how to express those feelings.


Weather theme ideas

This has been a great week to learn about weather. I lucked out! We have had beautiful warm sunny weather, rain, 30 mph wind, and snow. Can it get any better than that to teach children about weather?

Here are just a few of the ideas for learning and teaching about weather:






I know somethings are missing and there is so much more detail I could add.  I hope this theme web gets you started on planning your weather theme activities.

Space theme ideas

My children really enjoyed space week, which surprised me. I hope your child(ren) have just as much fun discovering space!

Here are some subcategories for you to explore with your child(ren). If you have more to add leave a comment. I am excited to see what you all come up with for the space theme.


Nursery Rhyme theme ideas

Here are some more Nursery Rhyme theme ideas that you may want to choose from.  Remember to pick a theme your child(ren) will be interested in; it will make learning really fun!

The Three Little Pigs
Goldilocks and the Three Bears
Old Woman Who Live in a Shoe
Hickory Dickory Dock
Little Boy Blue
Little Miss Muffet
Pat-a-cake
Jack and Jill
Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
Do You Know the Muffin Man
A-Tisket, A-Tasket
Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe
Five Little Speckled Frogs
I'm A Little Teapot
Itsy Bitsy Spider
Old King Cole
One, Two, Buckle My Shoe
Ba Ba Black Sheep

I am really excited for next years Nursery Rhyme week because I have so many fun ideas for some of these rhymes.  Don't forget to leave a comment and tell us about all the wonderful ideas you come up with for your Nursery Rhyme week.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Nursery Rhymes: Mary Had a Little Lamb

This is the last nursery rhyme of the week.  Next year I will do different nursery rhymes.  I hope these nursery rhyme lesson plans have been helpful for you and your child(ren).  I look forward to hearing about the other activities you came up with for your Mary Had a Little Lamb lesson plan.

Nursery Rhymes
Subcategory: Mary Had a Little Lamb
Color: white
Shape: circle
Number:  2
Letter: Ll
Opposite words:  stop/go
Texture:  soft

Art:  
1. Lamb mask: cut center out of paper plate. Have child(ren) glue cotton balls on to rim of plate. Add construction paper ears.
2. Lamb: trace child's hand, cut out hand, glue popcorn onto hand to make a lamb and googly eyes and paper ears

Books:  Mary Had a Little Lamb, books about lambs, books about sheep, books about sheering, Nursery Rhyme books

Cooking: lamb chops

Dramatic Play: 
1. School
2. Farm

Fine motor:  Cotton balls and tongs: use tongs to put cotton balls into containers and take out of containers

Gross motor:  Follow the leader

Language:  L collection: collect objects that start with the letter "L" around the house

Math:  White collection: collect white objects around the house

Music
1. Sing "Mary Had a Little Lamb"
2. Try learning "Mary Had a Little Lamb" on the piano

Outside time: 
1. School playground
2. Farm: visit a farm (FIELD TRIP) 

Science:  

Sensory:  


If you liked this Nursery Rhyme theme check out my others:
Humpty Dumpty
Three Little Kittens

Click here for more theme ideas

Need help getting started? Click here to see how to put together your weekly lesson plan.

Nursery Rhymes: Three Little Kittens

This theme was a blast.  My children love cats...a lot.  So this was a super fun day for everyone.  As always if you have activities or ideas to add to the Three Little Kitten Nursery Rhyme theme please leave me a comment and I will add it; so we can all benefit.

Nursery Rhymes
Subcategory: Three Little Kittens
Color: grey
Shape: heart
Number:  3
Letter: Kk
Opposite words:  sad/happy
Texture:  furry

Art:  
1. Mitten: have a pre-cut construction paper mitten; have child(ren) cut yarn and glue it onto the mitten
2. Laundry line: glue Popsicle sticks and yarn onto construction paper to make clothes line, glue on 3 pairs of mittens

Books:  The Mitten by Jan Brett, Three Little Kittens books, Nursery Rhyme books, Kitten books, Cat books, books on how yarn is made

Cooking: bake a pie

Dramatic Play: 
1. Cat and Kittens
2. Pet Store
3. House = laundry
4. Bakery

Fine motor:  Lace mittens: cut out two mittens and punch holes in them to make matching lacing cards. Have child(ren) lace the two mittens together to make one wearable paper mitten.

Gross motor:  Animal movement: move around like different animals.  Crawl like a crab, bounce like a kangaroo, fly like a humming bird, hop like a frog, pounce like a cat, run like a dog, stand on one leg like a flamingo, stalk like a tiger, slither like a snake, etc.

Language:  Mitten ABC match: Cut out 52 small construction paper mittens . Write a capital letter and a lower case letter on each mitten.  Have your child(ren) match the capital and lower case letters that go together.



Math:  
1. Color mitten match file folder *print out a file folder here
2. Perfect pie file folder * print out a file folder here
3. Mitten number match: cut out 20 small construction paper mittens. Write the numbers 1-10 on 10 mittens and put corresponding dots on the other 10 mittens.  Have child(ren) match the correct number to the correct amount of dots.

Music: Yarn streamers: make 1 1/2 foot yarn streams by tying a group of 6-12 strands of yarn together.  Dance around to music with streamers.

Outside time: 
1. Snow: play outside in the snow. Build a snowcat (SEASONAL)
2. Mitten scavenger hunt: hide mittens outside; have children find mittens.
3. Pet store: visit a pet store (FIELD TRIP) How many cats? What color are the cats? How many cats are asleep? How many cats are awake? How many cats are playing with toys? How many cats are eating? 

Science:  

Sensory:  
1. Inside snow: put snow in the sensory bin. Play in the snow without mittens and with mittens.  When are your hands colder? (SEASONAL)
2. Clothesline: Make a clothes line with yarn and chairs.  Fill sensory buckets with warm soapy water.  Give children mittens to wash and hang (with clothes pins) on the clothesline.


If you liked this Nursery Rhyme theme check out my others:
Humpty Dumpty
Mary Had a Little Lamb

Click here for more theme ideas

Need help getting started? Click here to see how to put together your weekly lesson plan.

Nursery Rhymes: Humpty Dumpty

My first lesson plan for the year! My children loved some of the activities and others weren't a hit.  If you have more ideas to add to the Humpty Dumpty Nursery Rhyme theme please leave me a comment and I will add them. I am sure we can all benefit from each other by putting our heads together.

Nursery Rhymes

Subcategory: Humpty Dumpty
Color: white
Shape: oval
Number:  1
Letter: Hh
Opposite words:  up/down
Texture:  smooth

Art:  Fingerprint Humpty's: use fingers/thumbs as stamps to make eggs shapes.  Decorate your "Humpty's"; draw eyes, hair, ears, etc.


Books:  Humpty Dumpty books, Nursery Rhyme books, books about eggs

Cooking: Eggs gallore: how many ways can you cook an egg? (Boil, scramble, fry, pouch) 

Dramatic Play: 
        1. Kingdom: kings, queens, prince, princesses, jokers, dragons
        2. Cowboy: horses, cows, cowboys, cowgirls

Fine motor:
1.Put Humpty together again: white oval construction paper with zigzag lines; draw on Humpty's face, cut on lines, use band-aids to put Humpty together again. *idea found here
2.Tongs and Pom poms: Using tongs have child put pom poms into egg carton holes

Gross motor:  Jump: how high can you jump? how far can you jump? (measure in inches) jump on one foot, jump with both feet, jump forwards and backwards,

Language:  
1. Rhymes: words that rhyme with wall (ball, call, tall, mall, fall). On a piece of paper make three columns. In the center column write the word "all" 6 times.  In the right column draw pictures for each of the rhyming words including "wall".  Help child name the picture and write in the left column the beginning letter for each picture.
2. Read or recite "Humpty Dumpty"
        3. Hh horses: Cut out "h", "H", and horse heads in brown, black, or white construction paper.  Decorate with yarn, googly eyes and markers to make horses. *idea found here


Math:  
1. Egg Carton Shape toss: Draw shapes in each egg compartment in the egg carton.  Say a shape and have child toss coin, button, pom poms, etc. into the correct shape hole.
2. Plastic Egg Counting: Label plastic eggs with numbers 1-20.  Have child put the correct number of coins, buttons, pom poms, etc. into each egg.

Music: Egg shakers: fill plastic eggs with dry beans and hot glue shut...instant shakers.  Dance to music an use your shakers

Outside time: Humpty in the sand: Build walls in sand box and have plastic eggs to knock off the walls.

Science:  Floating eggs: have 2 cups filled with water, add 1 raw egg to each.  Have child add salt to one of the cups.  What happens? * idea found here

Sensory:  
1. Playdough Humpty's: Make eggs and walls with playdough.  Add people and hourses. Reenact "Humpty Dumpty"
2. Blocks, plastic eggs, horses in sensory bin


If you liked this Nursery Rhyme theme check out my others:
Three Little Kittens
Mary Had a Little Lamb

Click here for more theme ideas

Need help getting started? Click here to see how to put together your weekly lesson plan.

How to put together your weekly lesson plan

Step 1: To start pick a weekly theme.  Try a theme that goes with the season or a holiday.  Pick themes that your child(ren) are interested in. Click to see my "2015 Tot-school and Preschool Weekly Themes" list.

Step 2: Coordinate your education builders to your theme.

Education builders:
Color:
Shape:
Number:
Letter:
Opposite words:
Texture:

Step 3: Find activities that will support your nursery rhyme. Plan activities that your child(ren) can do by themselves as well as activities that require your supervision and assistance. I try to plan activities with items I already have around the house; that way I don't need to spend any extra money.

Support Activities:
Art:
Books:
Cooking:
Dramatic Play:
Fine motor:
Gross motor:
Language:
Math:
Music:
Outside time:
Science:
Sensory:

Step 4: Go to the library and get books!  I love the library; we spend almost every Monday at the library collecting new books for our weekly theme. Don't forget to let your child(ren) pick a few books for themselves.  Reading is very important!

Step 5: Start playing and learning with your children and have fun!  Remember to get on their level and learn with them.

**Record your ideas: I bought a spiral notebook to write down all of my ideas. The first page has a list of the weekly themes for the year.  The rest of the pages look like this...                            

(Weekly Theme Title)
   Monday      Tuesday      Wednesday      Thursday      Friday
Subcategory:___________________________________________________
Color:_________________________________________________________
Shape:________________________________________________________
Number:_______________________________________________________
Letter:________________________________________________________
Opposite words:_________________________________________________
Texture:_______________________________________________________
Art:___________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Books:_________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Cooking:_______________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Dramatic Play:___________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Fine motor:_____________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Gross motor:____________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Language:______________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Math:_________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Music:_________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Outside time:____________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Science:_______________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
Sensory:_______________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________

Tot-school & Preschool Themes

      Recently, my sister-in-law asked me for some of my lesson plans so she could have ideas of things to do with her children. I thought I would share them with you.
      With three children at home, 4 and under, I like to have educational activities at hand that we can do.     Otherwise, I find myself turning on Netflix or handing the kindle over. These options aren't bad but my family really needs to cut down on the screen time. As one of my 2015 goals I have put together weekly lesson plans. These lesson plans are more of a guideline for me to follow.  The themes are based on season appropriateness and family interests.  Please know that I am not a perfect mother or teacher. There are days we don't get around to having "school". I hope that these lesson themes, activities and ideas are useful for you. I also hope they help you get your creative juices flowing, because you are the one who knows your child(ren) best and how to help them learn and grow.



2015 Tot-school & Preschool Weekly Themes
*As I plan and do activities I will add links to this post; click on a theme to find the lesson plan and activity ideas*

JANUARY 26-30: Nursery Rhymes (Humpty Dumpty) (Three Little Kittens) (Mary Had a Little Lamb)

FEBRUARY 2-6: All about me (My name) (How I look) (My favorites)
9-13: Feelings  **Valentine's Day
16-20: Family and babies
23-27: Body

MARCH 2-6: 5 senses
9-13: Community Helpers
23-27: Transportation
30-3: Construction and tools

APRIL 6-10: Spring  **Easter
13-17: Space
20-24: Weather
27-1: Geology

MAY 4-8: Botany
11-15: Farm animals
18-22: Pets
25-29: Mammals

JUNE 1-5: Crustaceans
8-12: Insects
15-19: Zoo animals
22-26: Summer
29-3: Bikes

JULY 6-10: Fire and safety
13-17: Camping and safety
20-14: Climbing and safety
27-31: Fish

AUGUST 3-7: Ocean
10-14: Ice Cream
17-21: Bubbles and shadows
24-28: Watermelon
31-4: School

SEPTEMBER 7-11: Art
14-18: Music
21-25: Sports and balls
28-2: Fall

OCTOBER 5-9: Spiders
12-26: Bones
19-23: Pumpkins
26-30: Halloween

NOVEMBER 2-6: Hygiene
9-13: Eating healthy
16-20: Manners
23-27: Thanksgiving
30-4: Shepherds

 DECEMBER 7-11: Wisemen and angels
14-18: Mary and Joseph
21-25: Jesus  **Christmas
28-1: Winter

Need help getting started? Click to see how to put together your weekly lesson plan
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