G is for Green

Mommy School is baaaaaack!
All of your kindness and gratitude inspired me to get our Mommy School toddler program back on track.

I have literally been working on this packet all week long, even though it is slimmer than previous packets.  I have decided to make things as simple and as sweet as possible.
My packets are unique for one main reason:
Especially for toddlers, I believe in doing as many hands-on activities as possible!  I tend to steer away from pencil/paper activities. So the beauty of this packet is all of the ideas.  You can take these ideas and make them work for you! There are a few paper/pencil activities, but I mainly focus on ideas with the necessary visual aids.
Here are some of the concepts covered in this 2-week unit:
* Letter of the week:  G
* Number of the week:  5
* Color of the week:  Green
*Theme of the week:  Green/St. Patrick's Day
* Song of the week:  Five Fat Peas
You can download your own "G is for Green" packet here or here on Scribd.

I do have to enforce a few guidelines to protect myself when sharing my ideas.  So please read before downloading.
* This packet is in PDF format.  Please be sure that you have the most updated version of Adobe Reader in order to open the file.  I am not a computer expert, and I really can't help you with downloading issues.
* PLEASE do not take advantage of my willingness to share.  I will not customize this packet using different fonts, colors or personalized formats.
*This packet is for personal use only!  You may use this for your own preschool class or in your own home.  You may never sell any part of this packet.
* There is a wealth of ideas on the web, and I compiled lots of fun ideas combined with my own.  Check the credits section for more great blogs and sites!
Clip art designs and/or fonts copyright Dianne J Hook. Used with permission from DJ Inkers. I could not share ANY of these cute fonts and clip art with you except for their support!  Thanks guys!

I would LOVE to hear about your learning fun!
Good luck!

You can find other printable Mommy School packets here:

T is for Thanksgiving

I DID IT!!   I surprised myself!  I really didn't think I could finish a Mommy School packet in time for Thanksgiving.  But the moving truck arrives tomorrow, and I have this done and ready to share!  I am really quite excited about this T is for Thanksgiving packet.  My Little Man has been gobbling like a turkey for months.  (Funny thing--he also associates "Gobble, gobble" with garbage because one of his books described a garbage truck gobbling up the trash!)
In this packet, you can find:
* Ideas for Thanksgiving games and activities
* Ideas for Thanksgiving art, science, and math
* Ideas for Thanksgiving food crafts
* Thanksgiving book ideas
* Thanksgiving songs and fingerplays
* Ideas for teaching the shape of the week (triangle)
* Ideas for teaching the number of the week (four)
* Ideas for teaching the letter of the week (T)
* Tons of corresponding visual aids and printables.
I am super excited about these fun "T riddles" in the packet.  You can use these as riddles or as flashcards.  Here is the turkey riddle:
In this packet, you can also find a Thanksgiving colors book.  It is a little poem that describes 5 different colors you may see at your Thanksgiving feast!  Here are a couple of pages:
There are TONS of ideas packed into 56 pages--there is definitely something for everyone!  Be sure to review the credits on the last page for more great ideas!  BUT... my friends, I am just not sure if I can justify spending 12+ hours on creating these packets every 2 weeks.  I do want to share my work and make it available for our kiddos.  However, I am considering creating packets in the future with all of my own work and charging a simple $0.99 download via Paypal.  The L, H, and T packets will remain free... but with my husband's urging, I've decided to consider this.
Please read the following before downloading:
* I am forever grateful that DJ Inkers allows me to use their fonts and clips to create fun learning packets!!   Clip art designs &/or fonts copyright Dianne J Hook. Used with permission from DJ Inkers.

* This download is in PDF format.  I receive a lot of technical questions that I am definitely not equipped to answer!  Just be sure your Adobe is up-to-date so you can download it easily.  

* Please understand that I cannot e-mail you this download in your own specific format or send you modified versions of any parts of the packet.  If only I had all the time in the world and all the computer skills under my belt.  I can only offer this one format, but you are welcome to tweak parts of it as you wish.  Thanks for understanding!

* Please use this packet for personal use only. 

*If you download and use this packet, I would love to hear about it! You have no idea how it makes my day!  The comments I receive about Mommy School touch me more than any others.  I love the collaborative feeling of Mommy School. 

With all that business taken care of, you can download your own T is for Thanksgiving packet here or here on Scribd

Enjoy your lil' turkeys this Thanksgiving!
I will be chasing my lil' turkey around our new HOUSE!

H is for Halloween Packet

**Updated:  All links are working now!**
If you're new to Oopsey Daisy, I recently decided to combine my 2 favorite roles--teacher and Mommy.  Every week, I teach "Mommy School" to my 20-month-old Little Man.  It's an adventure teaching a toddler, but every week, we focus on a theme, letter, number, color, and song. I absolutely LOVE Mommy School!
This week, we finished up our "L is for Leaves" unit in Mommy School.  We did a whole lot, but I was not a very good photographer this week.
I am super duper excited about this upcoming week in Mommy School.  Halloween was always my favorite time to teach, and Little Man is just starting to really enjoy the holiday.  So the next couple of weeks are going to be FUN!  I have compiled a gigantic 60-page packet this week!!  And yes, it's a printable packet that you can enjoy with your little ones at home!  I have gotten very little sleep this week as I compiled this packet, trying to have it done so we could enjoy it as much as possible before Halloween rolls around!  So I am crossing my fingers that you'll enjoy it too!!
In this packet, you will find:
* Halloween learning games and activities
* Tons of Halloween art ideas.
* Halloween Science, Math, and literature connections
* Food Ideas
* FOUR flannel board stories with corresponding visual aids
* Book ideas
* Songs and fingerplays
* Halloween party ideas for toddlers
* Ideas for the color, number, and letter of the week.
* TONS of visual aids and learning activities ready to go.
Honestly, there is no way I could do all of these activities in even 2 weeks.  However, I wanted to compile everything in one packet so I could have all the ideas in one place for years to come.  So choose some of your favorites to do with your own little one this week!
Some of my favorite ideas in this packet are these Halloween movement cards:

You can use these cards with your kiddos to get out the wiggles in a "spooky" way!

Just a note:  This packet took an incredible amount of time to create! I want to share this with you because I believe in teaching our little ones at home.  Please review the credits on the back page of the packet so you can see where I searched for ideas!  Also, I would love to hear about your learning fun if you use this packet!  Then I can tell my husband that the late nights were worth it!  🙂 

You can download your own H is for Halloween packet here or here on Scribd.

Just a note...
* I am forever grateful to DJ Inker's for allowing me to create fun learning tools using their products!!
* Clip art designs &/or fonts copyright Dianne J Hook. Used with permission from DJ Inkers.

Have a "spooktacular" week with your kiddos!

L is for Leaves

Happy fall, y'all!  This was a fabulous week for Mommy School, and we are definitely enjoying our Leaves unit!  I was much more relaxed knowing that I had 2 weeks to pack it all in, and Little Man loves repeating the activities after I introduce them.

Here is what we are learning about along with a picture peek through our week:

Theme:  Leaves
Letter:  L
Number:  2
Color/Shape:  Yellow
Nursery Rhyme/Song:  In the Leafy Treetops
1.  We made lemonade playdough to spotlight the color yellow.  We used a cookie cutter to cut out leaves and sang songs about them while we played!
2.  We created these marbled leaves (tutorial coming later!)
3.  We went to Grandma's house and used the small wheelbarrow to collect leaves for the week's activities!
4.  We learned one-to-one correspondence by placing fall-colored M&M's on the fall tree.  After we placed the "leaves", we ate them, of course!
5.  Little Man loved to play in his sensory tub including dollar store leaves and gourds, plus red and white beans.
6.  We learned about the number 2 by gluing 2 paper leaves on the numeral 2.
7.  We played a fun color game!  I traced Little Man's hand and cut out colored hands out of felt.  I asked him to give the yellow hands a "high five."
8.  After reading Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert, we made our own leaf creatures.
9.  This happened a little spontaneously.  While I was cooking, Little Man wanted to mix up his own "leaf soup" with silk leaves and a plastic spatula!
10.  We sang songs as he "raked" the leaves.
11.  This was a Mommy craft!  I made melted crayon leaves to hang in our windows.  I love how they turned out!
12.  We counted out the appropriate number of leaves to match to the number tree.
**You can find out more about these activities plus MORE in my download today!**

Motherload download!  As I was browsing ideas and creating my plan for this unit, I wanted to be more organized!  I typed up all my ideas and inserted visual aids into one huge document!  I am sharing this big fat packet with you today!  Even if you don't use the whole packet, I feel like there is something for everyone.   The packet includes:
* Unit activities and games
* Art, science, math, and literature connection ideas for the unit
* Snack ideas
* Book ideas
* Songs and finger plays
* Ideas for the color of the week
* Ideas for the number of the week
* Ideas for the letter of the week
* Visual aids for flannel board stories
* Tons more visual aids and materials

Just a note:  To be clear, I did not invent all of these ideas--I just compiled them!  Many of the ideas I did bring with me from my teaching experience, and I did create many of the visual aids.  However, please review the credits on the last page of the packet to see the sites I visited to compile the packet.

I am sharing this with you because I believe in helping our kids learn at home! But please understand that I am sharing my hours of work with you without compensation.  You can download your own L is for Leaves packet here or here on Scribd. **For personal use only.**

* Clip art designs &/or fonts copyright Dianne J Hook. Used with permission from DJ Inkers.

I love sharing ideas with you, and if you use these ideas at home, I would love for you to share with me!  ENJOY!

Fall Pictures & Mommy School Q&A

Before sharing my thoughts about Mommy School this week, I wanted to share some pictures from last night.  We are enjoying a gorgeous Indian summer, but the leaves haven't changed here yet!  So we drove 80 miles up in the mountains to get a taste of fall.  The weather was chilly, and we saw a splash of yellow leaves--still no red and orange, though!  Little Man loved wearing his new sweater and belt and getting his hair done with Daddy's gel!
We had to hold him to take pictures because he would take off running! And he is FAST!
Isn't Mr. Oopsey Daisy a good photographer?!
Mommy School
Both Little Man and I really enjoyed our review week this week.  It gave us extra time just to breathe and get over our nasty colds!  PLUS I had the opportunity to see that he had really learned more than I thought he had learned!  I pulled out some activities we had done, and Little Man was much more involved than the first time around!  It felt good knowing that more had sunk in than I thought.  So it was very worthwhile for me, too!  I also learned how important it is to offer our kids repetition.  Little Man seems complacent when I introduce something new, but he becomes more and more involved each time he does an activity.
I thought I would take a minute to answer two of the most common questions I've received about Mommy School.  I do have a major in early childhood education, but I don't consider myself an expert in Mommy School.  Yet.  I am still learning what works for us, and every child/family is different!  So this is just one opinion!  Do what you feel is best!
Question:  I am wondering when I should begin Mommy School.  Do you think my son/daughter is ready?

Answer:  Well, I don't believe there is a "magic" age when children are ready because each child is so unique.  A few signs I looked for to detect Little Man's readiness for my specific program:
* Interest in reading and text
* Basic exposure to letters
* Ability to follow directions (Ability doesn't always mean desire!)
* Interest in the print in his environment

I firmly believe that you can start learning activities with your child no matter what the age!  The fabulous Deborah from Teach Preschool wrote a genius post just this week, all about lesson plans for infants.  Definitely check this out!  You'll learn how to simplify your themes and concepts for your little one. It doesn't have to be complicated--use books, photos, and hands-on learning to make it relevant to their world.  My Mommy School method is only one way.  

Question:  Do you teach your units over one week or two?

Answer:  Originally, I was teaching my units over just one week.  But I realized that this was a pace I couldn't maintain! I love so many ideas that I can't narrow it down!  From now on, I will be teaching Mommy School units over 2 weeks.  I think this will give us an opportunity to do more repetition of activities, too.  Repetition is great for kids!  It will also give ME the opportunity to try more activities.

Last but not least, I wanted to share a list of sites and blogs that I have bookmarked.  These are sites that I review on a weekly basis to reap all the great ideas that I can!!  I don't like to reinvent the wheel, so I love new ideas for teaching!  Do you have a favorite  website for teaching preschool to your tots?  Leave me a comment so I can check it out--I am always hungry for more ideas!
Favorite Mommy School Sources
Whew!  That's a lot of great ideas!  I also have a BIG surprise for you next week!!  I have a 40-page packet all prepared with all of my ideas typed up and all of the necessary visual aids!  I have everything in one place, so if you are following along at home, you'll have all the ideas at your fingertips!  I am getting more and more organized as we go.  So stay tuned for next week:  L is for Leaves!

D is for Dogs

Wow, this week of Mommy School was a struggle!  Both Little Man and I are recovering from the flu, and I had a serious lack of energy!  With Mr. Oopsey Daisy traveling the entire week, I needed to be on my A-game as a temporary "single" parent.  I wasn't quite the All-Star Mommy Teacher I wanted to be.  I took lots of breaks to lay down on the couch.  I have declared next week of Mommy School a review week, so I plan to use the time to catch up and review everything we have covered so far!

Nonetheless, come along with me on our week's adventure!  You can download my week plan if you find that helpful.  I am still trying to find the best way to show, in just 1 measly lil' blog post, everything we're working on!  I think from now on, I will focus on showing our theme activities.  Just keep in mind we are learning number skills, colors, shapes, and lots of letter sounds, too!  It's just a whole lot to document each week!

Here are some of the fun doggy activities we did during this week:

How Much Is That Doggie In the Window?
* Little Man has a photo book full of pictures of dogs.  He loves looking through them.  We sang the song "How Much Is That Doggie In the Window?" and took turns selecting a dog photo and putting it up in the window with each verse.
* We read the adorable book How Much Is That Doggie In the Window?.  (We read this over and over during the week!)
* We visited our local pet store.  Little Man selected one he wanted to hold, and we gave it lots and lots of love!
* Every day when Little Man woke up from his nap, I had set up a trail of puppy paw prints from his room to a dollar-store doggy dish with his snack.  It was like a little treasure hunt!
* Little Man loved gathering up the paw prints!
* We made bone-shaped sugar cookies along with D-shaped cookies.  They made yummy snacks!
Little Man became very attached to his little puppy dog throughout the week!  We practiced pet care by giving this little puppy a bath!
D is for Dog craft
* We created a D out of black foam.  We stamped D's all over it.  Then we used white felt to create the ears, folded them over, and glued them.  A few google eyes and white-out whiskers!
Dog Imaginative Play
*  We dug for doggy bones in the sand box.  We used the Milk-bone snacks that are already bone-shaped and buried them and uncovered them in the sand.  We used a dump truck to load and unload the bones.
* We made a little dog house out of a cardboard box.  We had big plans to paint this, but the flu changed those plans!  We used face crayons to draw a nose and freckles on our faces.
* Little Man ate his snack in his dog house and loved crawling in and out of it!
* I made felt dog collars for each member of the family.  I just sewed velcro on each end and sewed all the way around the collars to give them a tailored look.  I ironed on the letters for our names.
* I made doggy ears by hot gluing felt ears onto headbands.
Are my boys cute or what?!
Harry the Dirty Dog
* We read this classic story and decided to make the story become alive!  We gave his stuffed animal dog a bath... just like Harry!
* Also, we painted this clean and dirty version of the Harry dogs.  We used dog treats (the Milk Bone version that look like bones!) to paint the dogs.  I am proud to say that this is Little Man's very first art project all on his own.  YAY!
* We also watched the video of Harry the Dirty Dog.
* We made Harry snacks!  This is the dirty dog version... he is now black with white spots!  Little Man loved this!

Doggy Numbers
* Most of all, I wanted Little Man to see numbers.  We made these dog bone magnets for him to manipulate on the fridge and also practiced putting them in order.  We paid particular attention to the number one.
* We also played a doggy counting game.  Just like the owl counting cards from last week, we had dog counting cards.  We placed the correct number of paper bones to match the dog.
* We used a grid counting game to learn one-to-one correspondence.  We put chocolate chips or paper bones on top of dogs in a grid as we counted.
* We studied the number one by covering a large numeral one with doggy stickers.

Dog's Colorful Day

* I found the story here.  I just re-typed it up and used my felt scraps to create the visual aids.  Little Man LOVED this story!
* You can find a fun printable for this story here.

We were studying squares this week, so we cut everything into squares for his muffin tin meal!
Here are some fun dog books we enjoyed this week:
* Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion.
* How Much Is That Doggie In the Window? by Iza Trapani.
* Dog's Colorful Day by Emma Dodd.
* Officer Buckle and Gloria by Peggy Rathmann.
* I Got Two Dogs by John Lithgow.
* McDuff series by Rosemary Wells.
* Spot series by Eric Hill.
I loved dog week, but I am also looking forward to our review week to give me a bit of a break!  Enjoy your weekend!

O is for owls

This week at Mommy School was so much fun!  I admit I wish that O is for owls could continue for another week or so!  Owls are perfect for the beginning of the fall season, and I chose the theme partly for me and partly for Little Man.  He knows owls and loves to "hoo" his little heart out!  And what can I say?!  Owls just make me happy, too!
Plus, I like to fit my themes and concepts based on what Little Man knows and loves.  He recognizes the letter O.  (Funny enough, I would always tell him the "O is for olives", and that kind of stuck!  He finds an "O" and says "olives!")  He also recognizes the color green... not sure why.  But this is why I chose the concepts for the week.  I love the flexibility of adapting to Little Man's interests!
Before I show off all of our fun this week, I wanted to show you how I structure my lesson plans.  Each day, I try to be sure to hit all of my concepts:  The letter of the week, color/shape, number, nursery rhyme, theme activity, and some kind of story.  You can download my plan by clicking here.
We started out our week reading lots of books about owls!  We practiced flying around the house with our finest "hoo's"!  We also watched videos of real owls hooting on You-Tube.  Some of our favorite owl books were:
White Owl, Barn Owl by Nicola Davies
Cock-a-Doodle-Hoooo! by Mick Manning and Brita Granstrom
Good Night, Owl! by Pat Hutchins
Little Hoot by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Jen Corace.
Owl Babies by Martin Waddell.
The Owl and the Pussycat by Edward Lear.
* We made an owl lunch using lunch meat, cheese, crackers, and olives.  This was a hit, and we made it a couple of times during the week!
* We made owl cookies.  (Stay tuned for a post about these next week!)
* We made owl s'mores.
* We created this O is for Owl craft.
* Little Man and his cousin made owls using pine cones.
* We made an owl puppet.  We collected leaves outside to use for the owl's wings.
* We used different colors and shapes of buttons to form eyes of an owl.
* We used felt shapes to create an owl.
* We practiced "One Little Owl" flannel board story throughout the week.
* We did an owl counting game using Easter eggs and a basket as a nest.  Different owls had different numbers on their bodies, telling us how many eggs to place in the basket.
We did some other activities with the letter O, too!
* O is for ocean.  We read ocean books, did our ocean I-Spy bag, watched Finding Nemo, and played with our ocean in a bottle.  (You can make your own by filling a plastic bottle with equal parts of water, oil, and add blue food coloring.  I also added a bit of sand to my bottle.)
* O is for octopus.  We made an octopus craft using a toilet paper tube and some blue paper.  We sang "In an Octopus' Garden."
* We found other things that were the same shape as the letter O, like this exercise ball holder.
* O is for olives.  We made English muffin pizzas with olives, Little Man's favorite ingredient!
Also this week...
* O is for oranges.  We ate oranges for a snack!
* O is for opposites.  We learned about opposites using opposites cards.
* We made an "O" on the floor with painter's tape and played Ring Around the Rosies on it.  Little Man LOVED this!  We also did a bean bag toss on the "O" on the floor.
* We used window crayons to practice writing the letter O on our windows!
We had A LOT of fun with the color green this week!!!
* We went on a nature walk and made a box full of green things we found.
* We used our Five Green and Speckled Frogs to sing the song all week.
* I made lime slime jello, and let it set up with matchbox cars inside.  Then, Little Man had a sensory experience with the lime slime jello!  I had the hardest time convincing him to get dirty here!
* We talked about how Apple Jacks looked like the letter "O."  Then, we sorted them into green and orange and made a bracelet with green Apple Jacks.
* We played Red light/Green light.  I think we need some practice with stopping on red!  🙂
* We graphed all of the green cars we saw during the week.
I think Little Man's favorite green activity was having the entire family dress in the color green!  He also enjoyed his green-themed Muffin Tin Meal!
* We traced the number one and placed one pompom on the one.  We used index cards to count just "one" car.
* We used green glitter glue to color the numeral one.
* We did several fun "one" songs and games, including a train rhyme, helicopter game, and castle song.  In the picture above, Little Man is enjoying riding to the train rhyme.
Thanks for the fun e-mails and comments!!  I am thrilled to hear that some of you are starting up your own Mommy Schools at home.  Awesome!  I bet your kids are loving it!

Mommy School Week 2: A is for Apples

First off, I just have to say THANK YOU so much for the kind comments on my Mommy Week post last week!  I honestly didn't realize that so many of you would be interested in seeing learning ideas for your toddlers!  It really made my whole week... as I was working with Little Man, I felt a collaborative effort!  It motivated me just a bit more.  So thanks!  Keep up the comments and questions.

This week's theme was a bit selfish!!  Every year I taught first grade, I did an entire Apples theme during the second week of September.  I really wanted to continue the tradition with Little Man!  We had a busy apple-filled week!

I definitely don't think up all these ideas by myself!!  There are so many geniuses out there already planning amazing activities, so I am linking up where I found quite a few ideas.  Here is the picture peek of our A week:

Letter of the Week:  A
Target Vocabulary Words:  Apple, airplane, ambulance, ant, abacus, alligator, animal crackers
Theme:  Apples
Numbers:  Introduction to numerals
Color/Shape:  Introduction to shapes
Nursery Rhyme:  Hickory Dickory Dock
Theme Activities:
* We made apple-pie scented playdough.  We played with animal crackers in our playdough.
* A is for Apples art.  We used an apple stamp to decorate a letter A.  (See #10 above)
* We made an apple smile snack with apple slicks, peanut butter, marshmallows, and chocolate chips.  (See #9 above)
* We painted an apple tree by stamping the end of a wrapping paper tube in red paint to create apples.  (See #4 above)
* We made apple muffins.  Scrumptious!  (See #3 above)
* I made several apples of different sizes and Little Man put them in order by size.  (See #5 above)
* We told and re-told the flannel board story of "Five Little Apples."  (See #8 above)
* We made crockpot applesauce!  Little Man helped me put all the apples into the crockpot, and we stirred it together all day as it cooked.
* Every day, we would play a little apple game.  I had a basket of paper apples, and we would act out this song (sung to the tune of "London Bridge is Falling Down):
See the apples falling down, 
Falling down, falling down
See the apples falling down
Down to the ground.

Throw the apples up in the air
Up in the air, up in the air
Throw the apples up in the air
Up to the sky.

Numeral Activities:
* We read Ten Apples Up On Top and created a picture of Little Man with ten apples on his head.  I helped him trace the numerals on the apples.
* All week long, he played with apple magnets with numerals on them.  He would drive his matchbox cars to a specific number.
* We read The Ants Go Marching and sang "The Ants Go Marching" and marched around with the appropriate numerals.  (We marched with a poster of a "!" when we sang "The Ants Go Marching one by one...)
* We did some M&M counting.
* We played a fun "Worms in my Apple" game.  Little Man had to count the number of holes in the paper apple ,and thread a green pipe cleaner (caterpillar) through the apple for each hole.  (See #6 above)
* We read Chicka, Chicka 1, 2, 3 and retold the story using magnet numbers on a cookie sheet.  See here for more.  
Field Trips:
* We went shopping to pick out our apples for making applesauce!
* We went on a walk, playing with our play airplane, and looking for airplanes.  (See #7 above)
* We went on a field trip to a local airport!  (Mr. Oopsey Daisy is a pilot, so this was a fun family outing!)
Shape Activities:
* We read Mouse Shapes by Ellen Stoll Walsh.
* We used shape mats while playing with our apple-pie scented playdough.  (See #1 above)
* We played with pattern blocks.
* We found different shapes that I drew inside an apple.
* We did the shape hokey pokey.
Other A-themed activities:
* Little Man's name starts with an A.  We created a special picture book spelling out his name.
* A is for Alligator.  We read Snip Snap, What's That? (by Mara Bergman) and created an alligator out of a letter A.  (See #2 above)
* We also sang the "Five Little Monkeys" song and acted it out.  Little Man LOVED that I was the alligator and would chase him and catch him!
* We created an airplane out of a wrapping paper tube and cardboard.
* We acted out being airplanes and flew around the house!
* We created an airplane snack using string cheese, apple slices, and chocolate chips.  (See #11 above)
* We counted bead on our abacus.
* I also created this adorable Ants at a Picnic file folder game, although it's a bit over Little Man's head right now.
Whew!  Busy, busy!  I had even more activities planned, but we ran out of time!  Here are a few more picture highlights that I wanted you to see--with BIG pictures.

This is the "Ten Apples Up On Top" activity we did.  This is one of my favorites!!  In first grade, I would have the students draw a picture of themselves doing something (riding a bike, doing karate, etc.) with 10 apples on their heads.  For Little Man, I just pasted a picture of him on there!  We traced the numerals and glued them on together.
I was really tickled with how our airplane craft turned out!  We used a wrapping paper tube, cut slits in the sides, and slid in a large piece of cardboard.  We trimmed up those wings and added some tin foil for the windows!  It was a family effort... Little Man loved it!
Here is our A-themed Muffin Tin Meal!  The "apple trees" were especially a hit!!
Enjoy your weekend!!
You can find more fun apple ideas at Delicious Ambiguity, Mommy's Little HelperThe Crafty Crow, and more from The Crafty Crow

First Week of Mommy School!

This week I started "Mommy School" with Little Man!  It was a lot of work to prepare lesson plans and materials again.... and it was a bit different than teaching first grade!  We did our learning in short, rapid spurts.  I aimed for about a half hour in the morning and a half hour in the evening!
Here is a little picture sneak peek into our week:
Letter of the Week:  C
Target Vocabulary Words:  Car, caterpillar, cat, cow, cookie
Theme:  Cars and Trucks
Number:  Introduction to counting
Color/Shape:  Introduction to colors
Nursery Rhyme:  One, Two, Buckle My Shoe
Theme activities:
* We played in a sensory tub with sand, blocks, cars, and trucks. (#2 above)
* We painted a car by driving matchbox cars through paint and then onto paper. (#4 above)
* We experimented with texture by covering car ramp with aluminum foil, saran wrap, sand paper, etc., and discovering how it affected the cars' speed. (#5 above)
* We drove cars and trucks through play dough. (#7 above)
* We made and ate race car snacks.
Field Trips:
* We took a field trip to Costco.  This was the highlight of the week!
* We went on a picnic and counted how many blue cars we saw, how many red cars, etc.
* We went for a walk and used sidewalk chalk to draw roads and a town for Little Man to drive his matchbox cars.
* We went to the car wash!  Little Man "drove" the car while we vacuumed.  We came home and had our own matchbox car wash in the bath tub! (#8 above)
Color Activities:
* Went color shopping by taking a basket from room to room and finding objects that were a certain color.
* We created colored ice cubes with food coloring. (#9 above)
* We graphed matchbox cars by color using car color cards.  (#1 above)

Counting Activities:
* We counted cars to learn one-to-one correspondence. (#3 above)
* We made a caterpillar out of paper circles and counted them with chocolate chips.
Other C-themed activities:
* We created a "C" word wall with pictures of family members and logos (like Costco!) that start with C.  
* We made cookies in the shape of the letter "C" after reading If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.
* We taped a giant letter C on our kitchen floor using painters tape.  Little Man traced the C with his cars.
* We played "Who Stole the Cookie From the Cookie Jar?"
* We learned about caterpillars.  We made a caterpillar out of the letter C using pipe cleaner, google eyes, and pompoms.  (#6 above)

We also had our first Muffin Tin meal.  Little Man LOVED his C-themed meal in his little muffin tin!!  We will definitely be doing this again!
I am so excited with how our first week of Mommy School went!  Little Man woke up every morning, eager and thrilled to discover the "C" word wall and couldn't wait to learn more!  It required a bit of hard work, but a definite success!
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