Saturday, January 16, 2016

Arctic Animal Invitations to Play

Well, it's January and we've just gotten our first snow fall of the season.  Little Guy has loved watching the snow fall so I set up a super simple invitation to play for him.
I put snow in a container and added our Arctic animals.  I also provided Little Guy with a small set of shovels and let him have at it.
After the first round of snow melted, I refilled the container with snow but I hid the animals at the bottom first.  Little Guy thought this was so funny and loved scooping out the snow to find the hidden animals.
I ended up refilling the container at least 4 times and Little Guy played happily for over 20 minutes!  Mommy score!

Friday, December 4, 2015

October Tot School - Pumpkins!

October was a fun, but busy, month for us!
Little Guy had a blast with all of our pumpkin themed activities and loved investigating real pumpkins!

Vocab: pumpkin,  orange,  circle,  round

Our Activities

Pumpkin Counting
Little Guy practiced his fine motor skills,  counting to 5, and 1-1 correspondence, using orange foam blocks from Dollar Tree and the pumpkin counting frame from my Pumpkin Theme Mega Pack (available HERE).
We used a pumpkin ice cube tray (also from Dollar Tree) and the blocks to expand the activity and practice counting to 10.

Pumpkin & Leaf Sort
I printed out the pumpkin and leaf word cards from my Fall Theme Literacy Pack (Available HERE) and gave them to Little Guy with some fall foam pieces from Michael's. 
He practiced sorting the pieces, first by shape, pumpkins or leaves, and then by color.

For an additional challenge, we added the foam pieces, or our foam squares, to our fabric leaves.  Little Guy had to hunt for the pieces and then use tongs to pick the pieces up to sort.

 Little Guy is a pro sorting objects by one property,  we're going to start working on sorting by two properties next.

Orange Sensory Play
Little Guy and I mixed flour, water, and food coloring for a "taste-safe" sensory activity.   He practiced self-help skills by scooping, pouring,  and stirring all the ingredients together.  I expected him to use his hands to play but he asked for a paint brush and had fun painting with his mixture.

Pumpkin Painting & Sticky Wall
I drew a pumpkin on a large sheet of kraft paper for Little Guy to paint.  I used the words "yellow" and "orange" as much as I could as we painted.
After the paint dried, I cut out the pumpkin shape and taped it to the back side of contact paper.  Next I taped the contact paper to a window.  I gave Little Guy some cardstock shapes (yes,  they are zebra print, lol) and showed him how to make a Jack-o-lantern face.  He had more fun sticking all the shapes on at one time.

Pumpkin Science & Sensory

For a quick prep sensory/science activity, I gave Little Guy a bowl of baking powder and a leaky sippy cup of vinegar.  I put two little pumpkins in a large, shallow tupperware container and encouraged him to scoop the baking soda onto the pumpkins and shake the vinegar on top.  He was AMAZED when he saw the bubbles!  (He tried using a spray bottle first but he couldn't quite aim the bottle and spray at the same time.  I was afraid he would end up with vinegar in his eyes).

To extend the activity, I gave him a paint brush and had him "paint" the baking soda and vinegar on the pumpkins.  This activity kept him engaged for almost 30 minutes!
(Thanks Tot School for the inspiration!)

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Fall Leaves ~ October Tot School (Part 1)

October Tot School ~ Fall Leaves
Vocab: Leaves, Orange, Yellow

Our Activities
Fall Leaves Sensory Invitation to Play
I set out a bunch of fabric leaves and a little plastic rake and shovel for Little Guy to explore.  He loved raking the leaves onto the shovel and scooping them into his pumpkin bucket.

 Fall Tree Sticky Wall
I drew a tree on the non-sticky side of a piece of contact paper and taped it to our door, sticky side out.  Little Guy picked out a leaf, I told him the color, and he added it to our tree.  
Our Fall Sticky Tree was inspired from Toddler Approved.

Fall Nature Sticky Wall
Little Guy and I went on a nature hunt in our yard.  He loved collecting sticks, leaves, dandelions, and grass in his bucket.  I set up a little Sticky Wall for him and encouraged him to add his collection to the wall.  He LOVED this and kept saying "more, more!" and running to find more things to add,

Fall Play-doh
Easy fall play-doh fun ~ Orange play-doh and fall theme cookie cutters; leaves, acorns, and pumpkins.  Perfect for fine motor skill development and vocabulary building!

For more Fall Fun, visit me on Pinterest:

Coming next ~ Pumpkins!