Monday, December 12, 2011

Tot School: Christmas Week 2

Winter is heading in full force.  There really won't be much comfortable outdoor play for the next several months, so I'm looking for ways to keep the kiddos from getting bored and fighting when they have cabin fever.  In Emory's case, I'm on the lookout for fun, interactive activities that aren't pushy in any way.   If I can sneak in something educational and developmentally appropriate, I'm all for it, but I definitely take his lead.  I think play is by far WAY more important than any type of "lesson" at this age, but his brother insists on doing "school" (I don't believe in formal lessons for his age yet either), and he wants to be in on the action.

Emory is 28 months

One-to-One Correspondence
I adapted this Christmas Countdown Printable from Criss-Cross Applesauce since Emory is enjoying matching 1:1 right now.  (I had made one for bingo markers, but didn't save it, so quickly printed this one to add to our fun.)  We used bingo chips and discussed circles and colors, and when we used the pom poms we discussed colors and big/small.

While his brother was making Marble Painted Candy Canes and a Handprint Santa I watched Emory experiment with the blue paint that he specifically requested.  He also experimented with finger painting, which surprised me slightly, because he doesn't particularly like his hands covered in paint.

Then it happened...he started painting his own hands!  We ended up making a Handprint Angel Ornament.

Emory really likes "shapes" so this little set is always a big hit.  The cover is a magnetic chalkboard, and can lay flat or stand up when connected to the carrier.  In addition to shapes, it also contains letters, numbers and a few basic math symbols.  Emory is mostly interested in the shapes, but we usually take out the letters for his name each time too.

We talk about magnets, and sometimes we move over to the fridge to play.

We name and compare shapes, and I call out colors for him to identify.  "Yellow Square!"

When he asked what the half circle was called, we talked about half circles and how they make a whole.  He then added the other circles.

Side Note
I've said several times, I think experimenting with shapes and geometry at the preschool age is so important and teaches so many math skills in a fun, yet informal way.  We have many sets of shapes, because they all provide different experiences and interactions.  To see other ways we have played with shapes, check out Christmas Pattern Blocks and Geometry (and Fractions) through Playful Patterns.  I also just got some Tangrams, and I can't wait to introduce them!

Magnetic Pictures
Last week in Tot School: Starting Christmas I talked about how much Emory loved the reindeer magnetic set from Dollar Tree.  I eventually gave him the snowman, Christmas tree and Santa.  I would say that "Frosty" is a close second to the reindeer!  He also likes mixing and matching the pieces between sets for fun.

The Tozzle app is still one of his favorites.

Party Time!
Enjoying a tootsie roll pop before the start of big brother Spiderman's 5th Birthday.

Tackling his brother!  It's no secret in our house that the 2 year old is often the instigator in the wrestling and horseplay!

Time Out
Ok, so this one just made me laugh!  I sent him to time out for something (or perhaps he sent himself, he seems to know when I'm going to send him), and then I hear "I am a robot" and look over to see this!

Field Trip
We also took a trip to the Vet's office, and I think it's great that he gets to see the puppy get her shots without being too squirmy or crying!

Favorite Books
Big Red Barn by Margaret Wise Brown (we still read it daily, even though his brother and I both have had this one memorized for a long time)
How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
The Elf on the Shelf by Carol V. Aebersold
Mighty Movers:  Emergency by Paradise Press

Tot School

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  1. Fun week! The angel painting is just so sweet. We are big tozzle fans too. At the moment however, they are enjoying Santa's Hair Salon. Not really any great educational app. Just lots of fun.

    Popping in from Tot School.

  2. You are the second person I've seen mention Santa's Hair Salon...I will have to check it out! My 5 year old is also enjoying a snowman app right now! :)

  3. That handprint angel is adorable! A little piece of spontaneous art. :)

  4. I'm new here and I love all of your fun ideas! I'm following and I hope you'll follow back at
    My little guy is only 15 months but soon he will be able to do these things!

  5. Great idea to use the Christmas tree printable for 1:1 correspondence practice! Such a cute angel!

    Criss-Cross Applesauce