Saturday, November 26, 2011

Learning ABCs: A through J

Rock is 20 months, well, will be in a week, and my how the time has gone by. I have really enjoyed all the time I get to spend with my little man the past year and a half. he has grown up so much and learned quite a bit. Changing each day, he has so much more he wants to explore and do, so he does.

Learning the ABCs through craft, rhyme, and play has been quite an adventure. I started off doing a week for each letter but realized that would take a while to get through the alphabet, especially once a new little one is in the house. so now we do three days per letter. As I mentioned before, I get my ideas mostly from online searches and other blogs. If you want to see some of my inspiration check out TotallyTots, 1+1+1=1, and NoTimeForFlashcards. (links in blogs i read on the left and my blog buttons at the bottom). When I can't find something I like or that I feel will suit my little one then I just make it up as I go with ideas I have seen elsewhere. We have done A-J so far and are up to the letter K
Here are the overviews (and pictures) of each letter so far...

 Letter A: "A" alligator craft, ants on my Aa's, the ant and the grasshopper Aesop's fable (drawn by me), astronaut "a', "a" apple tear and glue craft, Aa review sheet (Rock learned to say apple during this week and now loves to eat apples as well) Astronaut Aa recognition - not quite age appropriate yet.
 Letter B: "B" bird, letter b collage from magazine, b is for bugs and butterfly handprint craft, b is for bear (the bears are laminated  "b" magnets that we used on the back of a cookie sheet to trace a paper "b") boat (not picture: origami boat that we really used in water) bees coloring sheet that went with bug lesson.
** Letter A and B were my trial letter to see what interested him and what we could do without, letter tracing and recognition from other letters is still a little above his level

 Letter C: C is for Chameleon, Cow puzzle (coloring sheet glued to cereal box before cutting), catterpillar fingerpainting and picture frame, before picture frame is cookie recipe we used (eggless cookie recipe - didn't turn out too great), then barely visible is the chameleon coloring sheet that Rock barely colored... I have found that he prefers puzzles, cutting and gluing... and markers
 Letter D: Dessert collage, Dog craft from simple shapes, dog/dragonfly coloring sheet, dragonfly paper roll craft, drum from coffee can, "d" duck with five little ducks book/rhyme, and coloring. This is where we started doing three days instead of five, so I start grouping words when I want to do more than three :)
 Letter E: "E" Elephant (i incorporated several different elephants i found online to creat one i really liked), elephant handprints Eskimo, Egg hatching, Enter/Exit and other opposites coloring sheet that i drew that morning (i got a little behind on prep work).
**I really start to incorporate more books into lessons from now on, i was doing one or two a week now we do it almost daily (Rock loves to read!) Letter E books included:
I Love My Mama by Peter Kavanagh, Little Elephant's Trunk by Hazel Lincoln, Mama do you love Me, Horton Hatches the Egg, Ollie, and some opposites board books
 Letter F: "F" Fox, footprint fish in fish bowl (with sprinkling of "sand" - though i used cumin because it is waht i had on hand :)  ), cut and paste frog with twisty tongue, Farm box (i made the box before hand for durability and he still plays with it from time to time - - adapted from First Palette's ClothespinFarmAnimals) Books included: down on the farm by merrily kutner and this is the farmer by nancy tafuri
 Letter G: Goat "G" and coloring sheet (read down on the farm again because it follows a little goat throughout the story) Garden coloring and matching game with cardboard watering can (reuse of farm for pulling veggies), gutiar, gorillas papercraft and lowercase g
 Letter H: "H" hands, hippo hat , "h" horse with 'real' mane and tail, hammer shape matching  and review coloring sheet (both from 1+1+1=1), coloring sheet we also used a hole punch (in bottom center of page), Rock loved to hammer becuase he had seen dad do it recently to some nails that were sticking up on the porch - i even let him help me with the real hammer to "hammer" in the nails again.
 Letter I: "I" Iguana, Igloo cut and paste with snowflake stickers, 3d inchworm "i" with leaf sticky notes, inchworm measuring with mama made inchworm (each section is approximately an inch long making it 6 inches long)
Letter J: J Jaguar, "j" jellyfish, jellyfish shape matching, jungle animals matching, homemade jungle pattern matching game

As I get ready to continue Rock's letters I have leaned more towards matching, puzzles, cutting and gluing. I ocassionally add in some painting because he enjoys that as well. Brainstorming for each letter has been a lot of fun and the time I put into planning has been well worth it. We also do some videos from youtube his favorite is this Phonics Song

Oh how great it is to be a mother.This age is so much fun! I hope I can continue to be as enthusiastic about Rock's learning even with a newborn in the house. I en joy this time we ahve spent together so far and know my time will be more divided but I trust that I will still have plenty of time for both my children.

For our heart is glad in him,
because we trust in his holy name.
Let your steadfast love, O LORD, be upon us,
even as we hope in you.
Psalm 33:21, 22 (ESV)

Friday, November 25, 2011

Wow... long time no blog

So last time I was here I stated I had a new baby on the way. Now I'm just waiting, anytime now, yup. I have been wanting to do a lot of crafts lately. Not sure if it is because I know I won't have much time once littl eone #2 comes around or if somehow my pregnancy hormones are releasing creative energy. I created some slippers for my son from The Crochet Geek's tutorial of high top booties... now my niece wants some too. I also made a crochet newsboy cap for my sis which she loves. here are the booties, sorry no pic of the hat.

I found that I have a lot of black and white yarn so my crochet has been very black and white  :)

Also, I started Rock with his letters at the end of September. I search for most of the crafts and ideas online. Two of my favorite sites are Totally Tots: Now I Know My ABCs and 1+1+1=1: Tot School, but there are many others that I have used along the way. This really helps with my need for creative outlet as I prepare crafts and lessons for my son each week. Here are some of the favorites of mine that we have done so far. (sorry can't figure out how to turn photos right now... too tired yet not able to sleep)

F - footprint fish

elephant handprints

Goodnight gorilla little g

Lowercase i inchworms

Letter F - Farm and fence
I will probably do a homeschooling/letters blog soon and also an update on new baby of course, once he/she arrives. Hopefully it isn't months before i blog again, but one never knows.

How precious is your steadfast love, O God!
The children of mankind take refuge in the
shadow of your wings.
They feast on the abundance of your house,
and you give them drink from the river of your delights.
Psalm 36:7, 8 (ESV)