March 31, 2012

Magnetic Board Fun

There are so many ways to engage children in learning.  Here is one simple way we had fun with magnetic letters and writing.  

This activity led into the kids writing their own words and finding the matching letters.  Then they realized when the capitals letters were all taken, they could replace them with small letters. They tried sounding out words too.  This activity has gone on for almost 2 weeks now.  I left the board up and it turned into a drawing board.  I'll be taking it away this weekend and see who notices it's disappearance.  Just another fun thing in the home of PattyKakesKidz.

March 23, 2012

Kidz & Art (The Sky's the Limit)

With 2 kids of my own in college and my third about to enter this fall, I have heard that programs in the arts are the first to go.  This lost art scares me.  I have made a special effort into offering daily art along with music to allow creativity, inspiration, and a love and respect for art in general.  Art is a process, taking time and resulting in a beautiful outcome. After a week on a unit study of our skies, we took that week to also explore Art on Space.  Here is what "Space" looks like to PattyKakesKidz!

Three year old Noli begins her art with the Sky as her theme.  Check out her process.

Noli sees the sky in pink, with a splash of green in our sun with orange rays.  Her pond below reflects many colors and her trees glow in blue. She sees her world in the colors of the rainbow.

Four year old Piper tackles her painting with a desire to cover every square inch of paper.  

The star sparkles in reds and purples, her sun shines bright in yellow with blue rays, her moon is a vibrant yellow surrounded in dark blue sky.  Notice the blacks and greens showing the effects of the darkening sky.  Below, her earth is bountiful in orange, browns, and greens.  A blue pond sits in a field with a little orange duck wading in the middle. Van Gogh, eat your heart out!  

At three years old, tackling a painting that is larger than yourself, can be daunting.  Taking time each day and looking at his art with a fresh pair of eyes, Ethan continues his painting with such determination.

The grasses that divide Ethan's painting ranges from green to orange and on to yellow.  He sees his sun bright yellow, which reflects onto his star.  His purple moon glows bright against hues of blue in the skies.  Below in the grasses there sits a muddy lake.  No blues there, it's all mud and grass. 

Five year old Carlo went on to complete his painting after what appeared to be done.  The following day I asked him to take a look at his picture and decide if he could make some additions.  Look at what he did.

Carlo sees all. The silver plane screeches through the sky.  It heads towards a star that reflects the reds from the scorching hot mountain saturated in lava.  The burning yellow sun shines high up in the sky to brighten the day as the gray clouds are warning that a storm is about to arrive. 

Our four year old Grace has a goal for her painting.  Her eye for colors and patience to paint over the course of a week, produced a beautiful piece of art.  
See the end result below.

 The bright orange and yellow sun heats this picture up.  The yellow and red star dances with the look of a piƱata to celebrate the birthday of Grace's daddy.  Rainbows light up the sky above, as the green grasses scream "spring is here!"   A small purple butterfly is part of our skies and a yellow daffodil sits quietly in the grasses. The final touch to make this picture pop, black outlining.
Happy Birthday Daddy Phil
Anonymous Artist
Some artists prefer anonymity.  
Jovani sees his sky as a busy part of our world.  The green jet flies high above into the yellow glowing clouds.  His blue moon and purple star show the depth of colors he sees in the evenings.  Centered is the hot sun heating his picture with oranges and yellows.  Below the mountains, a black jeep with large tires, roars across the plains.  After realizing red represents heat, he adds lava flowing through out his fields.

Art is a process.  
Let it flow and offer it as often as you can.
With love to all, peace and art from PattyKakesKidz!

March 16, 2012

♫♫ A One, A One, A One, Two, Three, and...♫♫

Music makes us smile, cry, laugh, live and dance.  I have the opportunity to listen and watch the most beautiful children making music.  I would love to share it with all of you.
Making Music with PattyKakesKidz


♫Rock On♫

Bugs 'n Zoo Animals

The Palo Alto Jr. Museum & Zoo is like a little hidden treasure.  I found out about it this past month and decided to take our PattyKakesKidz on a fieldtrip.  It's FREE, with a suggested donation of $5 per person.  Our theme this past week: Bugs & Zoo.  
 Solve my riddle says the Grumpy Old Troll as you cross his bridge.
 Encased bugs. ""What's That Bug Called?""
 Who's that cute little butterfly?
 Come on, I dare you to come into the bat cave.  There are real bats in here!
 Butterflies in the walls and bugs in the drawers.  Too cool!
 A complete felt wall with bug felt pieces.  (I want one of these LOL)
 This life-size chrysalis was the most beautiful site to see.  Such inspiration.
 The kids found the tarantula and it was a must for a picture.
 Kid sized spider web.
 Multi-sensory hands-on exhibit. (Water Pressure)
 More hands-on.  
 Beaming faces, ready to explore.
 Exploring preserved specimens.
 Science with bugs.
What a colorful bird.

 The hollowed out tree has beveled glass windows to explore frogs, snakes, and habitats
 Another angle on exploring bug specimens. 
 Lions Den
 Honk Honk if you love animals.
 More in the lions den.
 What a beautiful bird.
 The outdoor aquarium.
 A froggy-go-round.
 Ducks in the rain.
 Whaaaat is that in there?
 Time for lunch under the oak tree while it rains all around us.
After lunch, some park play in the misty rain.  My hands are cold, this little one says.

 Someone is having loads of fun in the drizzly rainy park.

Check out some of our themed work.
 Making our own zoos (dioramas) 
 Group dioramas
 Reading skills (is sounding out title; "Ethan's Zoo")
 A little glue here will hold the zoo animal.
 The flower here will sit nicely in the water.
 Gathering some foliage for aesthetics.
 Would you like to visit "OUR ZOO?"
 The Elephant Area.
 The Leopard Area.
 Some zoo crafts. (monkey, giraffe and and lion puppets) 
 Bug necklaces.
 Large laminated animals & bugs.  We laid them all around our living room and taped on windows, sat on the couch and role played "going to the zoo".  Couch was large van.  Kitchen was entrance to pay.  Dining area was beginning of stroll thru zoo.  We pretended to feed some animals.  Once done, we made Zoo Books to journal our fun.
 Our Zoo Book/Journal.
Colors, numbers, following directions.  Fun Activity Sheet.
We did so much this past week, S is for Spiders, T is for Turtle, lots of writing, coloring, exploring, pretend play, workbooks for colors, numbers and letters.  The learning and fun never stops.

Next week:
Sun, Stars & Planets
with PattyKakesKidz