Friday, December 5, 2014

I is for Insect

I grew up with all brothers and we had a huge "wild" hill down the back of our yard. We spent a lot of time down there and as a result, bugs don't bug me much. (Hehehehe I crack myself up.) Except flying cockroaches. Gah! ross! I didn't even know cockroaches could fly until we lived in Arizona for a while and I was non too excited when I found out. 
   Anyway, we discussed insects during letter I week. We mostly talked about how insects have 6 legs and if they don't have 6 legs, they are a different kind of bug. 
   I found this awesome bag of bugs at our local party store. I did not realize what a treasure trove party stores are for preschool teachers who are looking for random little things that box stores only sometimes stock. 
  Well our bugs found their way into my daughter's bug jar that we made her for her birthday one year. (She doesn't mind bugs either.) 
  The kids had fun taking turns pulling out different bugs and then we sorted them into insects and not insects by counting their legs. It was great math practice and a lot of fun.
  My favorite part? When we were done and the kids just got to play with the bugs. According to my 2 year old son, cockroaches say rawr. I think it's pretty fitting cause those things are not my favorite. 

Here's a sneak peak into our life. My husband, also a bug enthusiast, is a teacher. His go to classroom pet? A praying mantis. Usually he just tells his students to bring them in and they find him one. Have you ever seen a praying mantis hunt and eat? It's pretty primal and very cool. Put it on your bucket list, it's worth seeing. 

Apparently there is a type of mantis that flies. He really wants to find one. 

Okay, back to preschool. Here is a two day project we did for letter I week. We did the insect i when we talked about insects and the ice cream I when we talked about ice cream. (You can check out that post here.) The pipe cleaners were a little hard to deal with so next year, we are just going to do paper legs. 
  


I is for Ice Cream


We had a lot of fun, ice cream centered activities for letter I week. 

We did an ice cream, number recognition. 

Each child rolled a 10 sided dice and colored the corresponding number. Click here for a free printable. 
Click on the ice cream math pdf. You will need to sign up to download. The small grey download button with the blue arrow is the correct link. 

We sang an ice cream song with felt ice cream cones.
(To the tune of 5 little ducks) 5 little ice cream cones in an ice cream shop.
But no one wanted to by them with vanilla on the top. 
So one little ice cream cone took some time to think.
She mixed in some bubblegum and turned herself pink . . . 

Click here for the full tutorial and full lyrics to the song. 

We made capital I, ice cream art. 

Click here  to see the insect activities we did relating to the second half of this project. 

At the end of the day I was really wanting some ice cream so we decided to do an impromptu field trip to the ice cream shop for the next class. (It was really a frozen yogurt place, but we'll take it.) The lady was so nice when she found out we were from a preschool. She showed the kids the freezers and the machines in the back and explained how everything worked.
 

Monday, December 1, 2014

H is for . . .

 . . . hats!

. . .  hexagons!
It is no secret how much I love pattern blocks. Seriously. Coolest. Blocks. Ever. (Awesome Christmas gift for those of you who are stumped.)

Anyway, I was super excited when I found out a couple of years ago that they sell pattern block stickers on Amazon.
Product Details
We worked on making hexagon "cookies" with our pattern blocks and then converted the blocks to stickers so the kids could take their hexagons home. The kids used yellow hexagons, green triangles, blue diamonds, and red trapezoids in different combinations to make a hexagon.
  



Here's a free hexagon cookie pdf. Each hexagon matches the size of the yellow pattern block hexagons. 
When you click on the link, there are a lot of ads on the page. You want to click the small grey download button right beneath the box that says view document.  You will need to sign in to download the paper. You can sign up for a free 4shared account or use your social media outlet to download. Please leave a message below if you have any problems or questions. 

H is for Hide

 Letter H's infiltrated our classroom and hid all over the place hoping to join in the fun. We rounded up those H's and sorted them into capital and lower case letters.


Then the kids infiltrated my house and found their own places to hide for one awesome game of hide and seek. It's the one day a year where they get to check out the upstairs rooms. 



Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Easy Fall Themed Center


Here is one of the centers we did last week to continue our work on the season of fall. Each bare tree has a number at the bottom and the kids are responsible for putting the same number of leaves on the branches. For example, the 6 tree would have 6 leaves. The 8 tree would have 8 leaves. Pretty simple and a great way to work on number recognition. 

 You will need to provide your students with a variety of bare trees with numbers below them and cut out leaves for them to put onto the tree.