Saturday, August 7, 2010

Tot School

Kayleigh is 29 months
Tot School

Life was a tad different for Kayleigh this week. She got to experience life as an only child. Big Sis was away at church camp for the week. It was freaky quiet without any unison screeching.

It was also our trial week for a more purposeful Tot School. Next week Mackenzie starts back up with school, (sniff, sniff my baby will be in fourth grade) so I really want to get Kayleigh in more of a routine with regards to her 1:1 time. Like all tots, she's more apt to play nicely by herself for a spell if you "love tank" is filled up.

Her "spirited" personality has really had an effect on our homeschooling. Since Kayleigh's arrival we've been just scraping by with the basics. This year I want to add our extras back in.

I plan to start Tot School first thing after breakfast, before Mackenzie starts her work, and hope that it will alleviate some of our issues with Kayleigh's behavior. Then she's going to start playtime in her room. Then she'll join us again and play with a sensory bin or playdough while we continue our work. Then maybe an educational dvd. Although I don't want to use the tv everyday. We're still going to be winging it somewhat. LOL

At any rate, we had a full week of "schooling." I even joted down a list of things I hoped to accomplish. We actually did a few of them. Everything else was changed as our whims guided us. Clearly, that's how Tot School seems to work best for us.

My plan is to focus on one letter per week, to work on recognition. We did 'A' this week. It was nothing exciting. A couple of crafts and some puzzles or games will be the extent of our "literacy" activities. Oh and we're making an alphabet book.

I'm also starting a morning routine with her. Stuff like singing a good morning song, talking about the weather, practice our colors, and the days of the week. Mackenzie is going to be my helper with this. And we're going to focus on one nursery rhyme/week during this time. One day, when I figure out exactly how I want it to go, I'll make a more detail post about how this is going to work.

We started with our morning routine each day. I gave her a little pointer to keep her hands occupied. Our nursery rhyme for the week was Jack Be Nimble. She's pretty good at reciting it now. And we acted it out by jumping over a glue stick. We're going to be putting our nursery rhyme printables into a book too.

Next we read. I gave each day of the week a "focus skill" like numbers, letters, shapes, colors, etc. All that means is on Wednesday we read books about numbers and, maybe, had a number activity or craft. Sorry no pictures of the reading because I had a munchkin on my lap. I'll list what we read this week at the end.

Then we did some sort of muscial or gross motor activity. One day we played with our LeapFrog Guitar and danced to our Baby Einstein Sing & Play CD. Kayleigh likes to use her LeapFrog Guitar as a violin. She does this everytime she plays with it. It cracks me up.

We read a couple of versions of the story of Noah's Ark this week, because A is for Ark, afterall. Then we did this Noah's ark craft I created. Twice.

I originally made it because Kayleigh likes to use glue and I thought she could just glue some animals from a magazine. Except, I went a little crazy with our school room makeover and tossed our magazines. So no animals. I just made some from clip art when I did the ark. While I was doing it I thought about how cute it would be if I made the windows/doors in the lift the flaps and glued the animals behind them.

That was great until I set out to do it. She's two for the love of pete. She can't glue around the edges so they'll fit behind the flaps. She just wants to load on as much glue as she can and then slap it down. So I didn't cut out the flaps. She colored them and glued them whever she wanted. On the front. But if you have an older child they might like making the ark with flaps.

We did it again because she wanted to. This time I just gave her the ark and some animal stickers I had.

We also made the first page in our alphabet book. This week's page was A is for Ants, from Totally Tots. We made thumb print ants all over an A. The she drew "legs." Yes, I know that nothing about those ants is anatomically correct. I do know how many body parts and how many legs they have. It's just that Kayleigh didn't care. And a shout out to Wendy who gave me TONS of free scrapbook paper, including the picnic checks used in this craft.

We had lots of fun pounding pasta. I've been meaning to try this idea, from Carisa, for about a year now. We finally did it. She loved it.

Our tot trays included:

A small spaces activity, drink stirrers in a sugar shaker.

A is for Ants magnet page

A shape matching activity made to look like the rainbow lollipops that Kayleigh loves. She's never eaten one though. LOL She did really good with this. She was able to name almost every shape.

Our Geometric Stacker , which we have not mastered yet.

Kayleigh is OBSESSED with Monster's Inc. at the moment so I made her a Monster's Inc. number sorting game

Lastly, spooning "treasures" into a themed icecube tray with a long spoon. In case you're wondering, she's sitting on a new box of diapers. I don't know why. She insisted though. LOL

Our sensory bin for the week was her old baby bathtub filled with water in the backyard. Recycling...LOL

And finally, some random learning toys. MEGA Bloks , LeapFrog Tag Junior Book Pal, and watching LeapFrog - Letter Factory.

And my two favorite shots of the week. All I can say is....Well, I have no words.

Get more ideas for your tot over at 1+1+1=1.


Katie said...

I love the Nursery Rhyme printables! Thank you so much for sharing this. Your posts always make me smile, and this week your favorite pictures cracked me up.

Jamie said...

Haha...the last two pictures are hilarious!! :)

Got a few more ideas that I hadn't seen yet (not the sticker placement idea)! :)

Mama to 3 Blessings said...

what a great week - HA! love the last 2 pics! Too funny! :)

Amber said...

Love the post! It looks like you had a lot of fun, and I loved the way your A for Ant turned out! Too cute!

Fiona said...

wow looks like you did loads of fun things. Iy must be hard with two children of such different ages. My two have 18 months between them and that is hard at times finding things they can both do!

Terra said...

Those last 2 pictures actually made me laugh outloud. I love your school room!!! It's beautiful...from what I can see from the pictures.
Ya'll did a lot this week! Wow!

Christina said...

First of all, what a great week full of fun stuff! Secondly, those last two pictures are hilarious! :)

Jen @ lil Mop Top said...

Love all your activities! I can't wait to try them out with my kiddo! Thanks for sharing!!!!

Annette said...

Looks like you all had a great week! Love the idea of using the tub for water sensory! I will have to try that this week! Plus it's a great idea for the outdoors! ;-) The last two pics cracked me up! Too funny!

melanie. said...

we're doing noah this week. i hadn't even thought of just using animal stickers - such a great (EASY!) idea! love the last two pictures

Yunia said...

How kawaii :) I love the idea of using animal stickers for the ark. Looks like she really enjoyed herself. Haha LOL ;) I love the glue part just piling it on

Thanks for the visit and have a blessed day

8)(8 said...

I love her turquoise outfit!

Monica said...

Thanks for dropping by my blog for the Blog Hop. I think your Tot is having LOTS of fun learning. I wish I could play with stickers too. Your curriculum choice look great. I use MFW Adventures this year. When is a good age to start mind benders? My daughter is 7.

Madonna (Lil' Ms.P) said...

Oh my! Great pictures to end your post! They made me laugh. She looks like she loved acting out the poem. Do you have a actress on your hands? I would say you had a great week and accomplish quite a bit!

Loving Our Homeschool said...

I'm slowly catching up on blogs. LOVE the second to last picture with the sticker! I literally did LOL.


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