Friday, September 23, 2011

Letter Ee - What's on the Tray?

Super Tot is 32 months old.

Letter Ee Activities I have planned for this week:

Elephant Counting
Count the elephants on each card and place a clothes pin on the correct number.
Printable available under photograph
~counting, number recognition, fine motor~

Eye Matching
Place the matching eye sticker on each face.
These are blank faces that are intended to be playdough mats.  I printed 4 per page, drew on the noses and mouth, and placed 1 eye sticker on each.  The printable is available here.
~fine motor, matching~

Envelope Color Match
Place each card into the envelope of the same color.
This is from a box of rainbow stationary available at Target.
~color matching, fine motor, practical life skills~

Provide bread for Elijah
Transfer pieces of bread from the "raven" dish to the "Elijah" dish using tongs.
Our Bible story this week is the Elijah & the Ravens.  To reinforce the lesson, Super Tot will be providing Elisha with bread from the ravens - while exercising his fine motor skills.
~Bible lesson, fine motor~   

Uppercase/Lowercase Letter Match w/ Eggs
Put each egg back together by matching up the Uppercase & Lowercase letter pairs.
I have seen this activity in several books and on many blogs.  I thought it would be a wonderful activity to review the letters we have been working on so far, and the eggs go along with our perfectly with our Ee week.
~letter recognition, fine motor~

Eagle Size Sorting
Place each eagle photograph on the correct mat (small, medium or large).
I found 5 bald eagle photos online and printed each off in 3 different sizes.
~size differentiation~  

Shape Matching
As you take a card from the bowl,  place a dot onto a matching shape on the mat.
I saw this idea here and knew I wanted to do it with Super Tot.  She has a great printable available at the bottom of her post.  I wanted to add one additional element, so I made one, as well (available below my photo).  My printable is 2 pages - one with the shapes outlined, and one with them solid.  This activity has several variations.  Each shape is a different color, so you could make it a little more challenging by having your child place a matching dot on each shape as they pull one from the bowl.  You will want to print 2 copies so you have one to cut up.  I included the solid shapes on my printable so that we could do the activity as a "puzzle" of sorts, as well.  You will see that on a future tray.  I'm sure with a little creativity, you can come up with additional ways to use the printable, as well.
~shape recognition & matching, fine motor, one-to-one correspondence~  

Eye Dropper
Place a few drops of liquid into each section of the tray.
~fine motor, one-to-one correspondence~

I Spy the Letter Ee
Circle all Uppercase & Lowercase Ee's.
~letter recognition, fine motor, pre-writing~

Super Tot will also be doing the following 2 letter crafts from our Letter Book, which you can read about here. 

"E" is for Eagle and "e" is for electric eel.

Letter Ee Bible Verses for the week:
"Every good and perfect gift is from above." ~James 1:17
"Even a child is known by his doings." ~Proverbs 20:11

Linking to:

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Math Monday - Lesson 3

Real Life Math - Lesson 3
Balance a Checkbook

Objective:  To learn how to manage a check register and balance a checkbook.  

Using a beginning balance of $500.00, enter the appropriate information onto the check register using the checks and deposit slips provided with this lesson.  Calculate the new balance after each transaction has been recorded, and be sure to enter the items in date order.  Upon completion of filling out the check register, balance the checkbook using the provided Bank Statement.  Not all items will show up as cleared on the Bank Statement, so it will be necessary to learn how to reconcile the account to verify that the balance on the check register is correct.

Lesson 3 Printables (available below)
1 - copies of 10 checks & 2 deposit slips
2 - blank check register
3 - "Bank Statement"

The attached printables that I created for Princess make this a complete lesson.  All you need to do is print and it is ready to go!  You may want to cut the checks and deposit slips out, and have your student put them in date order prior to completing the check register.  
Princess had a very fun time with this lesson.  She said it was her favorite Real Life Math lesson so far!  As I was explaining the lesson to her, we discussed that although we were using checks, the same principle would apply with debit or check card purchases, as well as online bill pay.  We also talked about the necessity of knowing how to apply this skill, even though there are many computer programs available that track your spending for you.  Money management skills are a necessity in life, and I am happy that Princess is beginning to learn them now.
She was very happy when she reconciled her "account" and her checkbook balanced!
Linking to:

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Letter Dd - What's on the Tray?

Super Tot is 32 months old.

Here are some activities I have planned for this week, as we work on the letter Dd.

Do-A-Dot Color Match
Place one dot in each circle/box below the colored circle of the same color.
Printable available below the photograph.
~color matching, one to one correspondence, fine & gross motor~

Count the Dogs
Count the number of dogs in each row.  Place the correct number disk in the empty box in front of each row.
I made the number disks by placing round number sticker on the front and back of  transparent plastic counters.  You could also have your child write the correct number in the box or place a number sticker in the box.  The printable for this activity is available below the photograph.
~counting, number recognition, fine motor if writing or using stickers~

Counting with Little Quack
As we read Little Quack, place one duckling from the cup onto the blue pond mat with the mommy duck as each new duckling in the story leaves the nest and braves the water.
Little Quack is one of Super Tot's favorite books.  I thought it would be fun to have an easy read-along activity to do to go along with Dd week.  The duck printables are available here.
~counting, creative play~

David & Goliath "Big & Little" Sorting
After reading the story of David & Goliath, place the little items in the "David" bowl and the big items in the "Goliath" bowl.  
I printed off large & small versions of 10 different pictures (all starting with the letter D) for this activity.  I thought it would be a fun way of reenforcing the difference in size of David & Goliath.
~Bible lesson, sorting by size~

Feed the Dogs
Place the bones into the correct dog's mouth based on the case of the letter Dd on the bone.
I made the dogs by covering empty food boxes with construction paper and cutting the mouths out with a craft knife.
~letter recognition & sorting~

Sorting Dinosaurs
Sort dinosaurs by type.
The dinosaurs were in a bag of Halloween treats in the seasonal section of Target.  There are 5/ea of 6 different dinosaurs.

Alphabet Puzzles
Complete the Alphabet Puzzles for the letters we have covered so far this year (Aa-Dd). 
The puzzles are available here from Confessions of a Homeschooler
~letter recognition, problem solving~

Shape Puzzle
Complete puzzle by matching shapes.
~shape recognition, matching, problem solving, fine motor~

I SPY the Letter "Dd"
Circle all Uppercase and Lowercase Dd's.
This continues to be one of Super Tot's favorite activities each week.
~letter recognition, fine motor, pre-writing~
Super Tot will also be doing the following 2 letter crafts from our Letter Book, which you can read about here.

"D" is for Dog and "d" is for dinosaur.

Letter Dd Bible Verses for the week:
"Delight yourself in the Lord." ~Psalm 37:4
"Depart from evil, and do good. ~Psalm 34:14

Linking to:

My Printables

Thank you for your patience these past few days as I worked to correct the issue with my printables.  I believe I have fixed them all and am now using 4shared as a host site.  When you click on one of my printables, it will take you to 4shared to download the document.  This should clear up any printing issues.  

I have also added a "My Printables" page at the top of my blog.  This will be a compilation of all of my printables, and an easy place to find what you are looking for without having to scroll through all of my old posts.  

Should you have any questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to click the "Contact Me" button at the top of my blog. 

Thank you!  

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Candy Corn Counting Game

I found an adorable Candy Corn Counting Game last week on Pinterest, but the link I had was just to the photo, and not the original post.  I had been unable to find the original post, but finally found it today.  This was, however, after recreating the printable and blogging about it.  I was going to take down my blog post, but instead decided to edit it and leave it up, as I made a slight change to my game board.  The original game is adorable and is available by clicking here.  

The reason I changed it is that I am working on number recognition with Super Tot and wanted him to be able to see the numbers.  They are covered by the candies on the original game, so I created a version with the numbers still showing.  My printable is available below.  
I printed mine off landscaped, then cut the page in half and mounted the two sides back to back onto orange construction paper.  

We used a single 12-sided die, but you could also use 2 standard 6-sided ones, as well.  In that case, you would allow the child to choose whether to throw one or two for each turn.  If the die lands on a number that still has a candy, your the child gets to eat the candy.  If the die lands on a number that already has the candy removed, their turn is skipped.  There are no winners with this game, as everyone gets their own treats!  Enjoy!

Linking to:

Monday, September 12, 2011

Math Monday

Real Life Math - Lesson 2
Calculate Driving Time

Objective:  To calculate the estimated driving time to travel to a specified destination by car.  Use a road atlas to map out your route.  Calculate average speed and account for necessary stops.  Include a copy of a map with your chosen route highlighted and complete the worksheet below for each day of driving.
Princess enjoyed this activity a lot.  She chose Walt Disney World  as her destination, and was very precise with choosing her route.  She had several options, and thought about the pros and cons of each, ultimately choosing to stay on major highways for as much of the trip as possible.  Once she had the route chosen and highlighted in our atlas, we used the worksheet to write the actual directions.  Next, she used the map scale to estimate the distance for each section of road in her directions.  Once she had completed that using the atlas, we went online and used Google Maps to compare her results with the actual mileage for each section.  We decided to use an average speed of 60 mph for the entire trip, based on the majority of the driving being on major highways.  Next, Princess added up the total miles and, using the speed of 60 mph, calculated the actual driving time for the trip.  Lastly, she created a daily schedule and calculated the number of dining, restroom & gas stops for each day of the trip.  This ultimately gave her a perfect picture of how long the trip would take.  

The best part is that if we ever decide to drive to Disney World, Princess has already done all of the planning for the drive!

This was a very fun and practical Real Life Math activity.  While Google Maps and navigation systems are great, I think it is so important for children to learn to use an actual map/atlas.  This is still our preferred method for longer road trips.  In addition to map skills, this activity also provides exceptional applications in real life math.  

Linking to:

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Letter Cc - What's on the Tray?

Super Tot is 32 months old.

We are having so much fun with our Letter of the Week activities!  Here are some Tot Trays I have planned this week for the letter Cc.

Car Sorting
Sort cars by either Mustang or Corvette.
One of Super Tot's FAVORITE things in the world is cars.  His favorites are Mustangs and Corvettes, and he points them out everywhere we go.  It is unbelievable how quickly he spots them, and how precise he is in always knowing the make and model of dozens of different cars.  I thought he would enjoy this activity for "Cc" week!  I went online and printed off various photos of Corvettes and Mustangs.  I laminated them and created a mat for him to sort the cars by model.  When compiling the photos, I included one of each color (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple & pink) for each model.  I plan on later printing the same colors of several other models to use for various Tot School activities from color sorting, matching, counting, etc.  He spotted me getting this one together and has already expressed his sheer delight in the photos!

Counting Caterpillar "Munches"
Count the number of holes in each leaf and match with the correctly numbered rock.
For this activity, I cut leaves out of construction paper and punched holes (1-8) using a basic hole punch.  I glued them to construction paper rectangles and attached a caterpillar to each.  I laminated them for durability, as I plan to use them again for additional counting and math activities.
~counting, number recognition~

Foam Crayon Color Sorting
Place foam crayons (from a $1 puzzle at CVS) into the egg cup with the corresponding color.
~color recognition & matching~

 Mommy/Baby Cow Sorting
Sort cow counters by Mommy or Baby.
~social skills, sorting, size comparison~

 Days of Creation Poster
Paste each item in the bowl under the correct day of creation.
This activity is from Bible Kids Fun Zone.
~Bible lesson, pasting, fine motor~

Cat Lacing Card
Remove cat "puzzle" piece from card and lace around the border.
~fine motor~

Letter Matching
Place each letter from the bowl onto the correct letter mat.
~letter recognition & matching~

I SPY the Letter "Cc"
Circle all Uppercase and Lowercase Cc's.
I apologize for this picture being slightly out of focus.  I didn't realize it until I uploaded and printed it.  I will be recreating it and replacing this photo with a clearer one in a few days.
~letter recognition, fine motor, pre-writing~

Super Tot will also be doing the following 2 letter crafts.
C is for Clown and c is for clock.
These are part of a letter book I put together for him.  You can read about it and see all of our letter crafts here.
Letter Cc Bible Verses for the week:
"Come, follow Me." ~Matthew 4:19
"Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right." ~Ephesians 6:1

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Fine Motor w/ Clothes Pins

Clothes pins are a staple in our Tot School, as they are a wonderful tool for developing and strengthening fine motor skills.  Fine motor skills involve the coordination of the small hand and finger muscles, usually in combination with one's eyes.  Fine motor skills are a necessity for everyday life skills such as eating, writing, manipulating buttons & zippers, etc. These fine motor skills require lots of practice, and we have found clothes pins to be one of many tools that we love and use each week to give Super Tot that practice.   

I often receive comments and e-mails asking how well Super Tot is able to manipulate them. I try to answer all of your inquiries, but because I get this question so often, I thought I would address it directly on my blog.  

I will start by saying that he certainly does not have them mastered.  He is currently 32 months old and can do them on his own, but still struggles and gets very frustrated sometimes.  He is getting better at manipulating them all the time.  I try to give him many opportunities through a variety of Tot School activities, as you can see from my various Tot School posts.  

If the basic manipulation of the clothes pins is still a struggle for your child, you might want to hold off on adding additional skills to clothes pin activities (shape matching, etc.).  While I do use clothes pins for matching, counting, etc., I still like to give Super Tot ample opportunity to just "play" with the clothes pins.  This is a fun and non-threatening way for your little one to begin mastering this skill.  

I had this tray out this morning for Super Tot to match wooden shapes using clothes pins.  He has done it before, but quickly became frustrated today attempting to manipulate the clothes pins.  I never force an activity, so I thought I'd give him some practice with the clothes pins alone, giving him an opportunity to turn that frustration into a feeling of accomplishment.
I removed the popsicle stick shapes and replaced them with a piece of cardboard (you could use a cup, box, bowl, etc.).  I asked him if he wanted to practice clipping the clothes pins on the cardboard.  He was thrilled to do that, without the added pressure of matching the shapes and having to be so precise in where to clip.  
He had a wonderful time, and even surprised me when he took it up a notch and built this "tower."  After building his confidence with the cardboard, he felt comfortable on his own clipping them precisely onto the much smaller space.  This was the exact skill that had frustrated him so much just a few minutes before!  
Different brands of clothes pins can be looser or tighter, thus making them easier or more difficult to manipulate.

If you open and close each one about 20 times before giving them to your child for the first time, it will assist in loosening them up a bit.

There are also clothes pins available in a slightly smaller size that are generally easier for little hands to manipulate (see photo below).