Friday, June 30, 2017

Number Islands

At Alphabet Island, we do not only learn letters, we learn numbers too!

I love the foam puzzle manipulatives we received this month!
Pop out the numbers and put them in some water and now you have Number Islands!
Mother Goose Time sent us a pocket cube a year ago, and we placed some numbers in there.  Sweet Pea threw the cube and then found the matching number and pulled that island out of the water.

You can see the "one" on the pocket cube she rolled across the room, and when she went looking for the foam "one", it was upside down.  She really focused on turning it to match.

It was a super easy game for Sweet Pea, so we stepped it up a notch, by switching our cube cards to actually look like a die.  After she threw the cube, she counted the dots and then found that number.  This was the perfect amount of challenge and fun for her. 

What really caught me off guard was how quickly Sweet Pea memorized the amount of dots representing a certain digit!  After a while, she no longer needed to count the dots, she would say, "Four!" or "Six!"  I definitely wasn't expecting her to catch on that fast.

Kids are like sponges- soaking up so much so soon.
It makes me so much more aware of what I say and do.

I'm so thankful for all the fun learning experiences we get to share together.  <3

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom

Welcome to Coconut Tree Day on Alphabet Island
Since we live in the middle of the forest and no where near the beach, Sweet Pea has
learned tons of new things this month that she never experiences.  Today it was Coconut Trees.

She is *nuts* (I know I'm corny) about these daily topic posters.
I love how they are actual photographs of the real image.  After studying it, Sweet Pea relates it to the thematic poster.  We worked on counting the coconut trees.

Mother Goose Time's Make and Play activity was a Coconut Tree dancing stick.  It went perfectly with our monthly CD (track 7) which played a tropical sounding version of the ABC song.  This also coincided with the book Chicka Chicka Boom Boom- an ABC book but uses mostly lowercase letters to tell the story.  
Here's how she made her dance partner:

I cut stips of green paper from the sheet MGT sent us, and Sweet Pea used her "One dot does a lot" method of putting glue on the strips.

I helped by pressing and holding them down on the cardboard tube also supplied by MGT.

I placed some glue around the top followed by Sweet Pea wrapping the green fringe paper around the trunk of the tree.  Bend the strips and you have yourself a coconut tree.

Time to Dance!  
She danced with her stick to the ABC song all around the kitchen. I think I replayed that song 5 times in a row.  She even started singing along and getting some of the letters <3   

When she was done dancing to the ABC song, it was the prime opprotunity to break out the letter puzzle manipulatives that came with our Alphabet Island theme and use them with our book. 
I popped one letter out each puzzle piece and placed all the letters on a tray 
(Sweet Pea snatched the Q before I snapped my pic)

I drew a coconut tree on her chalkboard table and she drew a giant blue circle next to it.  I think it might be the ocean .... :) 
We then read Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, matching the lowercase letters in the book to the correct uppercase letter manipulative and placed it on our tree leaves.

She did a great job at this!  I was so impressed with what she knew!
However, by the time we read to the middle of the book, Sweet Pea was done with our game and just wanted to read the book.

We cuddled on the couch and read the rest of our book and talked about the letters.
I'm so grateful she loves to read.

Be sure to follow our adventures on Facebook and grab some ideas from Pinterest

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Chasing and Making Waterfalls

On Waterfall day I had one of my junior high jams going through my head all know the one by TLC.  Maybe I'll let Sweet Pea hear it... she'll probably tell me it's too loud and to turn her Mother Goose Time Island Music onto track 7...the ABC Song. 
My how my life has changed.

She was so excited about our new topic poster.  She loves to put it in the sheet protector and really look at it.  She has gotten into the habit of then looking at the theme poster (to the right of our topic) and finding our topic there. 

She mentioned that the waterfall looked like a slide.
"Slide down."

After getting her interest peaked, I set up her Invitation to Create from Mother Goose Time.  Sweet Pea has been begging to paint and craft lately, which I absolutely love.
 Mother Goose Time sent us the paper, pebbles, and a coffee filter along with this stunning waterfall photo.  Sweet Pea even remarked about the rainbow.  All I had to add was the glue and scissors.  I adore how easy it all is.

When teaching public school, and we used white glue, 
I always said what my elementary teachers told us,
"One dot does a lot!"
Sweet Pea is totally my child.  Check out those dots!

One of the great aspects about this project is that it teaches layers in making artwork- background, middleground and foreground.  She's only 2 so we just worked in stages, but older kids can look at the picture and tell you that the waterfall is on top of the cliffs, and the rainbow is in front of the falls.

She worked on tearing her paper, placing dots, and then carefully placing her pebbles on top of her artwork to make the waterfall have rocks. She did mention that she would make a "Glue puddle" and then proceeded to pour the rocks onto the puddle.

Her masterpiece.

Now to wait for the dry time and then to hang her work.  
Love it!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Game Time: Building Sandcastle Towers

It's almost been a year since we started Mother Goose Time, and I can't believe my girl is almost 3! 
MGT supplies us with all sorts of fun; all I have to do is open a bag and set it up.  
I am so thankful for that.
Usually each month there is some type of board game that can be played.  I had tried one in the past, but Sweet Pea wasn't ready.  When I saw a bunch of other bloggers mentioning how much fun the sandcastle game was, I decided we would try again. 
I am so glad we did! Sweet Pea absolutely loved this game, and we've played it several times since!  

The game is great at reinforcing math concepts, color recognition, and fine motor skills.
She had to roll the die, count the dots, move her crab piece, recognize the numeral and color of the  space she landed on, and then count out the number blocks in that particular color and build a tower.  We were supposed to have 2 separate towers and see whose was the tallest at the end of the game, but Sweet Pea wanted to combine our towers into one enormous tower.  How could I resist?

She has trouble being persistent with challenging tasks.
I honestly thought she would have a hard time placing these lego like blocks together, 
but she did awesome and kept up with it even when she couldn't get it the first time!

Please pardon the Chick-fil-a sauce all over her shirt  :)  
We ate lunch before we played the game.

At the end of the game, Sweet Pea was so stinkin' proud of her tower!  She kept saying, 
"Wow Ma! Tall tall tower!"
And look at that smile, yall!

I love how a variety of learning skills was taking place during our game including:

 math- number concepts (identifying numerals and counting to determine quantity),
math-pattern and sorting  (matches, sorts, and charts),
and physical development- fine motor skills (controlling small movements).

Mother Goose Time does such a good job with incorporating more than one skill in the activities they provide. I love watching Sweet Pea grow and feel accomplished with something that was once so challenging for her- in this case the fine motor skill of connecting these little blocks.

Here's to more fun times playing games together!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Creating Crabs

This post is brought to you by the letter C.  :) 
We are on Alphabet Island having adventures studying island life including crabs!
Mother Goose Time came up with this little crab craft for Crab Day, and it doubles as a musical shaker!  I love it when crafts have a dual purpose.

Mother Goose Time sent us a little cardboard container with a lid, a strip of eye stickers, red glitter sand (I love this stuff), and a red piece of cardstock which I cut out 6 strips and 2 claws.
All I had to do was provide a paintbrush and paint, 
which is modge podge mixed with a little red acrylic paint
(Thanks Stacy at Things to Share and Remember for that great idea!)

It did not take Sweet Pea long to get after painting! I was so proud of how focused she was and how she tried to cover the entire surface of her container.  Most of the time she ends up painting her hands and making prints, but she really worked at just placing paint on the cardboard tub and the lid.

TIP:  Give things in steps one at a time to help keep kids from being overwhelmed.

When I placed the tray in front of Sweet Pea, I only had the container, lid, paint, and paintbrush on it.  .  Once she was done, I took away the paint and paintbrush and replaced it with a teaspoon and the glitter sand.  I also placed the red tub in a container to catch the glitter sand.  Using the teaspoon, Sweet Pea scooped and poured the glitter sand on the red glue surface and it stuck like a charm.

I helped by holding it so she could pour the glittery sand on the sides of her container.
After it dried outside, which didn't take long, I added a bit of rice into the container and hot-glued the lid shut.  No one wants to clean rice off the floor. 
Been there done that.
Sweet Pea folded the red cardstock strips in half, and I hot glued them and the claws onto the container... all he needed now was eyes.

Why have 2 eyes when you can have 12?

Sweet Pea was so proud of her craft she took it to her grandparents to show off later that afternoon. 
I love that she is becoming proud of her creations and I absolutely love watching her create.