January 22, 2017

Dinosaur Digs and more....

Dinosaurs have often been an exciting topic to learn about, yet controversial for some. Not everyone has the same views as to the definitive existence of these great creatures, but what a wonderful opportunity to explore these animals in all their greatness.  
This topic is for the believers as well as the non believers.  It opens doors and thought provoking conversations with your little ones.  
Enjoy seeing what 3 days of learning looks like in a preschool of 9 little ones.

At the first opportunity of clear weather; outdoors, here we come.
 We explored in our mud kitchen, which was renamed; the Dinosaur Dig.
 A prehistoric bat was found and fed, gulp...., MUD! LOL
 Setting a dinosaur trap.
 Digging beneath our Camellia flowers.
  His face says it all, "by golly, I've struck gold!" Actually just a huge lump of mud!
Group activities are important to a healthy opportunity for social connectivity:

Coloring a brachiosaurus in his habitat.

Here are some quotes from listening to the kiddos talk:

Question: Is he a meat eater?  
No, he eats the leaves on the tall trees.

Question: Am I bigger than he is?  
No, he can sit on you and squish you. 

Question: Do you think he's a nice dinosaur?  
Yea, he can be our friend and protect us from the big mean dinosaurs.

Comment: The T-Rex has BIG SHARP TEETH that can BITE YOU!

 Here's the final poster size painting they did as a group.  It's 2' X 4'.

I always include some type of fun educational worksheets, along with crafts, reading, music and discussions.  Hands on learning happens as well to connect all they have learned.  These next few are the worksheets.

Here is one of our dinosaur crafts.
Working together at the table was so much fun listening to their discussions and plans for play afterwards.  It was all about Dinosaur Digs.

Craft #2
Noodle Dinosaurs

Squeezing glue onto the lines then gluing any noodles you want provide learning as well.  It also develops fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. 

Craft #3

See the spikes on the tail?  Yea Miss Patty, they are to poke you with if you try to hurt it!

Wow, they listen when we discussed the purpose of the plates along the back and it's spiky tail.

Hatching Dinosaurs.

Well we cheated, for immediate gratification.  We broke open our eggs and then we placed them in water.  Otherwise, we would have had to wait a few days for them to hatch.  

This was truly a hands-on fun project.

Here are some good books we read.  There were 3 other ones too, 
but they went home with one of our kiddos.  

I laminated some dinosaur pictures to use as 
vocabulary words and put them on a book ring.
  That about wraps up our Dinosaur Digs week.  As I mentioned, we only had 3 days together so we could only get in so much learning with all our fun.  There's just never enough days in a week LOL.
Dinosaur Digs Bulletin Board
  Have a great day everyone, until next week where we explore our unit on the 
5 Senses


January 15, 2017

What's the Common Thread?

I looked at the learning we all did last week.  We studied Veterinarians, Construction Workers and Fairy Tales.  So one may ask; "What is the common thread here?"  My answer is, nothing really, other than the fact that preschool is all about opening doors.  Letting each child explore and find what feels right to them.  It allows them to wonder about growing up and seeing many options in life that they will have.  It also allows for new words to enter into their vocabulary and allows for some awesome dramatic play.  That is my answer to this very interesting question.  Check out how our week has gone from one theme to the next all while enjoying their time in with their extended family; PattyKakesKidz!

The stage has been set.  A Pet Adoption and Veterinarian Center.

Watch them run with it!
Doctor Tanner checks for a heartbeat on patient Caroline.  Doctor Laurel reads how to manage her health!
Next, the kiddos have been into construction.  Not the normal, building blocks kind, which they play with daily, but the working with tools kind.  Check them out as they explore the tools.

Now, for our regular week's them, Fairy Tales:

The Power To Change the Story
We started by reading the story; Little Red Riding Hood.  After we read the story, we focused on the parts that were alarming to the children.  It turns out the sentence, "What big teeth you have.", scares the children.  So we took the character "Super Why" and "zapped" in a new word.  We chose the word, "hands".  Now the sentence reads, "What big hands you have."  To have it all make sense, we also changed the sentence; "The better to eat you with." was changed to; "The better to hug you with."  We then reread the story and make a poster showing what we learned.  The children were so excited to know they had the power to change the story

The Three Little Pigs

That about wraps up our week.  We've been indoors for the entire week, which can be pretty tricky when you want to give the kiddos a chance to run, play and move.  So, we did yoga, dancing, obstacle courses and pretend play.  We did get a chance to get outside twice though to see our river rising.  We literally only got an hour of decent weather to get out, but the kids loved it.  Until next week friends,