"There is a garden in every childhood, an enchanted place where colors are brighter, the air softer, and the morning more fragrant than ever again."

Monday, September 29, 2008

Muffin Tin Monday / All About Shapes

It's a party...a shape party!!

Muffin Tin Monday is a first for me, but I know it won't be my last. My little guy was so excited when he saw his muffin tin full of fun, that he declared it a "Party Day"!! Our shapes were served in a rectangular muffin tin. On the menu(going across from the upper left): square cereal, round vanilla wafers, rectangular crackers, round crackers, star sprinkles, round bananas, cylinder sausages (I know these are a little gross, but my guy loves them), peanut butter for glue, triangle pineapple, diamond cheese, pyramid chocolate chips (okay I know it's a bit of a stretch), round cereal.

Did we have fun? Boy did we ever!!! We didn't just eat our shapes, we played with them, we got down right artistic with it. This is just a sample of some of what we made!!

Other activities on the menu for today...Shape scavenger hunt, building with shapes (we will find shapes around the house, i.e. cracker boxes, tape spools..., and build with them), the telling of the story Triangles Are Not Bad (with props), we will be playing with pattern blocks, and making pictures inspired by Ed Emberley's Picture Pie

Be sure to check out more of the fun at Sycamore Stirrings.

Have A delightful day!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

"Oh Lovely Mud" and Friday's Foto Finish Fiesta

If you've just dropped by to see my favorite photo for the "Foto Fiesta" scroll down to the last photo of today's post. But feel free to read all about our "lovely mud" if you have the time.

"Oh Lovely Mud"

When I was teaching, Mrs. Wish Washy was always a favorite of my students, the same is true at home. My oldest daughter loved this book when she was small and my little guy loves it now. It's the perfect book for little ones, it has repetitive language patterns, fun content and, and great illustrations.
In the book, poor Mrs. Wishy Washy is trying to keep the animals clean, but they keep getting in the mud.

For today's activity we learned about the letter M, it's sound, and the fact that the word mud starts with M. We first read the book together and then we maid a "Muddy M" painting

We used brown paint and a letter M shaped cookie cutter, a sponge in the letter shape would work as well.

Once Big Sis came home, from school, we worked together to make farm animal cookies.

I love this recipe, it's easy for kids to roll and cut out themselves. The cookies taste great too!!

Rolled Sugar Cookies

3 C flour
2 t baking powder
3/4 t baking soda
1 C shortening (I used butter(
1 egg, beaten
1 1/4 C sugar
2 T milk
1 t vanilla
Combine flour, baking powder, and soda, cut in shortening (or butter) with a pastry blender until it resembles course meal. Combine egg, sugar, milk, and vanilla. Stir until well blended pour into the the dry mixture. Stir with fork until well blended. pat dough into ball and chill 2 hours (we usually can't wait that long). Role dough 1/8 in thick and cut with cookie cutter.
Bake at 375 for 6 minutes.

After the cookies had time to cool we drizzled them with "mud". We used chocolate flavored almond bark (because it is so easy to work with) but any kind of candy coating or frosting would work.

Friday Foto Fiesta

The kids had such a great time working on this cooking project!! My favorite photo this week is of them together in the kitchen.

To Join the Fiesta!! Visit Candid Carrie.

Have a Delightful Day!!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Flowers in Fall

My little guy has been noticing signs of the changing season. One thing he has noticed are all of the tall sunflowers we pass as we drive Big Sis to school. So what better book to share than The Tiny Seed, by Eric Carl. Today we read the book together. He loved reading about the tiny seeds travels as the Autumn winds blew, until finally the tiny seed grows into the biggest flower of all (even bigger than the house). Sometimes we think of flowers as being something to talk about in spring, but this book ties the cycle of the flower into all of the changing seasons, beginning and ending with Autumn.

After reading the book we painted our own Flower, and snacked on sunflower seed nuts. The first painting is the one I helped him with, the second one is the one he did all by himself!!

Today we pained with tempera paint and a sponge clipped to a clothes pin, and a sponge brush!!

Our next activity with this book will be to sprout seeds, and observe how they grow.

Have a delightful day!!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Friday Foto Finish Fiesta

My little guy loves it when Big Sis has friends over!! He has on his "donkey ride'n hat". I honestly don't know where he came up with that name for it. (There are 2 donkeys that live next door to my parent's house, and he LOVES them.) The cutie playing the part of the donkey is one of my daughter's best friends her sister is at top left holding our little doll, and Big Sis has on her "horse ride'n hat". I love this photo because they are all having so much fun being kids!!!
My little guy has been under the weather this week. We will be back next week with more activities and books.
Swing by Candid Carrie 's to see more of the Friday Foto Fiesta!!!
Have a delightful day!!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

More Animals On The Bus

Okay I'm a little late. We've had our puppets made I just haven't had time to post.

We made a sheep and a cow, using the same idea as the pig puppet. My little guy wants to make a chicken next. If you want to continue to explore farm animals in automobiles and other unusual places you might check these great books out: Mr. Gumpy's Outing , Mr. Gumpy's Motor Car, Sheep In a Jeep, Cows In The Kitchen.
Have a delightful day!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Farm Animals on A Bus?

The Day Jimmy's Boa Ate The Wash is a great book filled with the funny stuff that kids like. Jimmy's class takes a trip to a farm, but things get a little crazy. Somehow the animals wind up on the bus!!

You may want to take this opportunity to reinforce the color yellow, the letter Y for Yellow and B for Bus, you may also want to sing a new version of the "Wheels On The Bus". Change the song up by singing "The pigs on the bus go oink, oink, oink...The cows on the bus say...(you get the idea).

This book will serve as a bridge into a farm animal theme, but the activities are great as stand alone activities as well.

The next activity is one of my favorite kinds of puppets for little ones. There are many cute paper bag puppets out there, but paper bag puppets can be difficult for little fingers to operate. You will find that I use this same style of puppet again and again (check out 5 Little Monkeys).

This is a simple stick puppet. No need for a fancy pattern. Your little one is going to enjoy creating something special with you no matter how artistic you are. It is also important that kids learn to use their own imaginations to create and problem solve. If they always observe you using patterns, and not trusting your own abilities they will feel less confident in their own creativity. (This is not to say that there is no place for patterns and following directions.)

Today we made the pig, but check back for other animals on Thursday.

I found simple household objects to trace for the face and snout, and then drew 2 simple ears. Use this as an opportunity to talk about the number 2, circles and the color pink (or whatever color you choose to use).

My little one is not quite old enough to cut on a line so I cut the circles out and let him color the snout brown and glue the pieces together, I then drew a mouth and eyes, but older children could do it on there own. It is helpful to draw a small x where the pieces are to be glued, this way your little one will know just where to place the glue and object.

We then glued our little piggy to a popsicle stick and sang "the pig on the bus goes oink oink...

Have a delightful day!!