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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

K is for . . .

Keys - We did key rubbings for letter K week.
King - We made winter king crowns.
We read the book Winter King, Summer Queen.

The story talks about how the seasons were made. After reading the book, we make our own winter king crowns. It's pretty self explanatory, snow flake cut outs, construction paper, white crayons, pipe cleaners, and tape!


You can't talk about winter without doing a snow man project! I thought I would change things up from making a traditional snowman and we made snowman-glyphs instead.

Each colored part of the snowman tells something special about the child who colored it. The hat tells about their gender: red for girls and blue for boys. The scarf tells you what their favorite color is. The number of buttons tells how old they are.

J is for Jacket

We read the book Clementine's Winter Wardrobe and talked about what clothes people wear during the winter time. I pulled out our box of winter clothes and the kids had fun trying on the boots, bibs, snow pants, jackets, gloves, hats and scarves.

Then, the kids dressed their own paper dolls in winter clothes. I took a picture of each child and printed it out on my computer to use as the face for the dolls. (Thank you Schroders for saving the day and letting us use their camera for the morning.) The kids were so excited to be turned into paper dolls! To make it a little more exciting, we added scarves made out of felt.

I used the templates for the paper dolls from http://www.makingfriends.com.

Letter J Play Dough

Two cuties making letter js with playdough!

The Mitten

Here are some activities that we did associated with the story The Mitten:

Arranged mittens of different sizes from smallest to biggest.

I made mitten cards with the numbers 1 - 9 on them in two different colors. The kids matched the same numbers and then put them in numerical order.

I cut out two large mittens and punched holes around the edges. The kids sewed the mittens together and put some cotton balls in the bottom to make them puffy. Then I gave all the kids a set of 8 cards with woodland creatures on them. The kids picked out which animals were in our story and then put them into their own mittens in the same sequence that the animals in the story did. It was a lesson to help them work on story recall and sequencing.

Muffin Tin Sorting Center

For an independent center, we use muffin tins to play matching games. You can do it with colors, letters, shapes, numbers, anything you can think of. You have a large circle in the bottom of the tin (I attach mine with sticky tack so that I can change them out) and smaller pieces in a bowl to match. At the beginning of the year, I used foam circles in the bottom of the tins in different colors and cut out small squares of the same colors to match. The kids sorted the colors into the correct tins. Since we are now almost half way through the alphabet, I did the same thing with the letters we have learned so far. I was very happy with how many of the letters that the kids could identify as they were sorting their letters.

5 Little Ice Cream Cones

We learned a new ice cream song that was a lot of fun. It was so fun in fact, that when I went to take a picture of my 5 Little Ice Cream Cones, I could only find 3 of them because my girls took them somewhere to play. I am sure the little lost ice cream cones will return some day.

I am not sure where this song originated, so I can't give credit but I have big plans to add some more verses for other colors. Like adding boogers to turn green (just kidding!)

I made a flannel ice cream cones in vanilla with an extra scoop in each color. As we sang the song, we put the extra scoop over the white. (To see our new and improved ice cream cones, check out this post here.)
5 Ice Cream Cones (To the tune of 5 Little Ducks)

Five little ice cream cones at the ice cream shop
But no one wanted to buy them with vanilla on top
One little ice cream took some time to think
He mixed in some bubblegum and turned himself pink
Little Suzie(student)came along And took that yummy ice cream home

Four little ice-cream cones at the ice cream shop
But no one wanted to buy them with vanilla on top
Then one little ice-cream knew what he should do
He mixed in some blueberries and turned his flavor to blue
Little __________ came along and took that yummy ice-cream home.

3 little ice creams at the ice cream shop
But no one wanted to buy them with vanilla on top
One little ice cream was a smart little fellow
He mixed in some lemonade and turned himself to yellow.
Little ___________ came along and took that yummy ice cream home.

2 Little Ice Cream cones at the ice-cream shop
But no one wanted to buy them with vanilla on top.
One little ice-cream got an idea in his head
He mixed in some raspberries and turned his color to red.
Little ____________came along and took that yummy ice-cream home.

One little ice-cream at the ice-cream shop
But no one wanted to buy it with vanilla on top
Alone and sad, he really wanted to go,
So he mixed in all the colors and made him rainbow!


We talked about ice during letter I/winter week.

We played Don't Break the Ice! - It was soooooo much fun!
We talked about descriptive words for ice as we handled ice cubes. The kids came up with ideas like: cold, hard, smooth, slippery, it melts, made of water. We talked about hot and cold being opposites. Then we looked through magazines and each found something that was cold and hot. I was very impressed with Trevor's idea. He said storms were hot because he found a picture of lightning. That's one smart cookie!


This week for letter I we made igloos. We read the book The Three Snow Bears by Jan Brett which is a Goldilocks story that takes place in an igloo instead of in the woods. This was a good practice of fine motor skills and I thought the kids did a great job! It was an interesting project because we discovered that there is a fine line between too much glue (your "ice" starts to melt) and too little glue (your cubes don't stay together). When we discovered that too much glue makes the sugar cubes start to fall apart, Hudson started singing, "In the sun it melted, melted, melted . . ." What a cutie!

Here's What We Did:

What we used:
A lot of sugar cubes
White glue
3 oz. white plastic or styrofoam cups (we used a bigger size, and it took a long time and an insane amount of sugar cubes)
Blue or white paper plates

What We did:
1. Before class I glued the cups to the paper plates so they would be sturdy and dry when the kids started working.
2. We glued the sugar cubes around the base of the cup first. Then we built each layer up until we got to the top. You have to be careful not to use too much glue. Too much glue starts to make the sugar disintegrate. However, if you don't use enough, your cubes will topple. Just a happy medium works great! 3. We glued the cubes on the top and then added a 2 X 4 X 2 row of sugar cubes in front of the cup for the door.


As our study on the winter season continues this month, we practiced writing our letters in "snow." (It's really shaving cream, but don't tell anyone.)

While, a very messy project, the looks on their faces makes everything worth it.

And as an added bonus, it is also a mild cleaner so our table was nice and clean after.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

H is for. . .

. . . Helping Hands
We read the book Hands Are Not for Hitting and talked about how we can use our hands to help others. Thanks to Miss Morgan for the book and activity idea!
Here's the link to the Hands are for helping page.

. . . Healthy Hands
I posted this lesson a while ago and we didn't actually get around to doing it, so we added it in to our letter H week.

. . . Hedgehog
We read the book The Hat and made the hedgehogs found here.

. . .Hiding
We found letter Hs hidden around the room then played hide and go seek to hide like the Hs.

. . . Letter H obstacle courses
HittingHula Hoop spinningHopscotch

E is for . . .

. . . Elephants
We read Elmer which is a story about an elephant who finds out how important it is to be true to yourself and made elephant masks.
To make the mask, I started with the idea on this site but made the mask by cutting out the pieces from a paper plate and painting it gray. I also added tusks. I had to tweak the size of the ears to make it work, but they turned out cute.
. . .Elves
We watched a little clip on the computer about painting elves here. Then we painted our own pictures that mimicked the picture at the end of the clip.
. . . Exercise
We read the book Skip to My Lou and learned how to skip using a step, hop, step, hop pattern. We talked about keeping our bodies healthy by getting exercise every day and did other forms of exercise like running, dancing, jumping jacks, sit-ups, etc.

Teddy Bear Picnic Tues./Thurs.

(I promised Gracie's mom I would take a lot of pictures, so be ready for it!)

For letter B week we had a teddy bear picnic and we had so much fun! We were glad that Miranda and Trevor were able to come and that we were joined by our moms, dads, and grandparents. I hope everyone else had as much fun as I did!
Before we went to the park, we sang "Cool Bear Hunt" by Dr. Jean and did a few other letter "b" activities:


Blocks - Miranda even made a Boat for her Bear

Button & Bead friendship Bracelets
At the park we did a few teddy bear and letter "b" activities:
  • teddy, teddy, bear (duck, duck goose)
  • pass the button (We had a button on a string tied in a loop. Each person held onto the string and we sang a song. As we sang, we passed the button from one person to the next and whoever had the button when the song ended, answered a question about their teddy bear.)
  • We read the book "Where's my Teddy?" which is one of my favorites to read out loud.
The kids had a lot of fun on the playground.
Their favorite activities were climbing up and down the barsand the slide
Miranda even got everyone making snow sand angels. She was nice enough to let her teddy go first.
We also had a teddy bear lunch: honey & peanut butter sandwiches cut in the shape of a bear, teddy grahams, & strawBerry juice.
Thank you to all the family who came and helped make this day a lot of fun!