Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Writing Her Name...All On Her Own!

 She's growing leaps and bounds yall.  
On Leg day during our Mother Goose Time unit on About My Body, 
Sweet Pea and I read the book Whose Knees are These? 
After reading, I asked her what she used her legs for, and recorded her responses in this short little video.

I love that she said cooking.  I know that her kitchen is right there, but we do cook a LOT together in the kitchen.  It's one of her favorite things to do.

However, this post is not about cooking- it's about how my 3 year old wrote her name for the very first time all on her own and totally out of the blue! 

Here's what brought it on...
After our discussion on legs, we made our Make and Play craft from Leg day, which was a pocket.
The main focus was on being able to lace the pocket.  I taped the end of the yarn to make a makeshift needle for Sweet Pea. 

I had to hold the pocket together and she did an amazing job at lacing through all the holes!
"Down and around....down and around..."

Her completed pocket below.
See that yellow marker there on the tray? 
I was about to write her name on her pocket in yellow marker, so she could then trace the letters with another marker.  When she saw me pick up the yellow marker, Sweet Pea hollered, "No Momma!  We need blue!" She is a stickler for how things should look, and since the example had the name Ben in blue, she felt she needed her name to blue as well and not yellow.
I first noticed this behavior (of making things look like the picture) using MGT last year and wrote about that experience here.

Sweet Pea's real name is Avaleigh.
I just refer to her as Sweet Pea on this blog.
She knew immediately without me telling her, that the first letter in her name is A, and as she drew the letter, she said "A".
I could not believe it! 
She had never done anything like this before! 
These are the moments why I became a stay at home mom.
I told her the next letter was "V" and she didn't need any help in drawing it either!

She needed help with the next letter, and since Avaleigh is a long name, I told her to just draw an "A".
I love how her "A's" are little triangle shapes with the bar cutting through.

And there it is.
Her completed pocket with her name on it.
Her name that she wrote all on her own.
For the very first time.

I am so grateful I was able to capture and see this moment for myself.

Happy Learning!

Friday, September 8, 2017

Math Made Easy with Mother Goose Time

I am loving the new set up of teacher materials for Mother Goose Time. Instead of placing the theme web on my fridge like I had been in the past, I am now putting the large Activity Calendar. 
This bad boy lets me see exactly what activities MGT is providing that day, including what skills they fall under such as math (the ones highlighted below).

Another thing I am loving is the Quick Reference of  the Developmental Continuum of Skills... 
I know... I know...**nerd alert** I am a total teacher nerd at heart.

Anyway.  MGT sent this awesome guide that is easy to read and goes through 8 domains. Each domain is then broken down into specific skills and then those skills are broken down into specific goals.  It makes it really easy to see where your child is at along the continuum and allows the teacher (aka mom in my case) to see the child's strengths and weaknesses. 

I have no idea where my girl is at verses kids her age.  She plays often with others at the park or playdates or in the church nursery, but as far as schooling is concerned, I have no idea where she should be or what we should be aiming towards. Having this booklet helps me with just that.  It allows me to see where she falls, and it guides me to provide her with multiple learning experiences.
As a mom, I feel equipped to teach her well.

I went through the math section and placed stars on the spots where I think Sweet Pea falls.  For the most part, she's in the Preschool range (Benchmark D), but there are opportunities to create more learning fun with the items she still ranks as Toddler (Benchmark C).   Looking at the column Benchmark E, allows me to see where the next step is on Sweet' Pea's learning journey.  
I know where we are headed.

So what does this look like in real life?

Well, on our first day of My Amazing Body unit, Sweet Pea needed to measure her height using blocks. I had her stand against the wall, used some painters tape to show her height, and let her use her Duplo blocks to create a tower to measure her height.  She was so careful when building this tower to make sure it didn't fall over.  I was so proud of her. 

26 blocks tall.
She's been all about her BeatBo too... he had to be in the picture.  
However, she decided after the picture that she wanted to see how many blocks tall he was; 
so she got to building and counting.

8 blocks tall.
This task alone covered 2 math skills.

15.2: Counts to determine quantity.
Sweet Pea falls into the Benchmark D--Counts up to 10 objects  

19.1: Estimates and Measures.
Sweet Pea is falls into Benchmark D here as well (uses non-standard measurement tools to estimate approximate size or volume; verifies estimation with help.);
 although she is showing signs of progressing into Benchmark E 
(estimates-not always logically-size and volume; measures and describes findings)

So what do I do now?
I give Sweet Pea more and more opportunities to build and estimate.
Let's measure this book.  What about another book?  Which book is bigger? 
Which book do you think will be more blocks high?  Why?

Let's measure this stick outside.  
Do you think this pinecone will be more blocks tall or less blocks tall?  Why?  
How many do you think it will be?  Let's build and find out!

Oh, I am already excited about taking these blocks outdoors and doing measurement in this most beautiful weather God has gifted us after last week's destruction with Harvey.

What are some of your favorite ways to do math with your little one?


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