Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Dinosaur Unit and What My Child Is Reading This Week

Our current learning theme is Dinosaurs and we are reading many books on this subject too. R's favorites are Dino-dinners-probably because it mentions poop!, Dinosaur Days, Can I Have a Stegosaurus Mom Please?, Dinosnores, Danny and the Dinosaur, and Dinos in the Snow. We are also reading Gorgonzola-a Very Stinkysaurus, Dinosaur Bob and His Adventures With the Family Lazardo, Dinosaurs (nonfiction) and The Little Dinosaur's Big Adventure. I am also using Meet the Dinosaurs, My Favorite Dinosaurs, and a few others to read excerpts out of.
R seems to be enjoying this unit, me-not so much. I was never really into dinosaurs and I'm still not. I am learning right along with Little R. She can already identify Triceratops, Stegosaurus and Tyrannosaurus Rex. So far our projects have been few and far between. We have made a TP roll Brachiosaurus-I think that's what it is (Littlefoot from Land Before Time), DIY fossils, rock dinosaur, and a dinosaur/forest painting/collage. I'm having a hard time figuring out artsy crafty things to do with this   theme. Maybe I'll come up with a few more before we finish this one.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Caterpillars and Butterflies

Caterpillars and Butterflies have been a pretty big deal around our house this year. The Gulf Frittalary butterflies are laying eggs by the hundreds or at least dozens on our purple passion fruit. Little R and I have successfully harbored (maybe wrong term) four caterpillars to butterflies so far. We have had 2 casualities too :(
We have not been able to see the egg to caterpillar stage. I have put leaves in our bug jar that I thought had viable eggs but no baby caterpillars yet. We have had teeny tiny caterpillars turn into butterflies. Maybe next year we will be able to watch the entire life cycle.
I can't wait for the monarchs.

Monday, September 20, 2010

More Bugs-our Themed Activities

As a part of our "unit" on BUGS, little R and I spent time completing a few projects, learning about different bugs, and exploring the great outdoors.
We made a wooden bead, pipecleaner and pony bead spider; clothes pin and coffee filter butterfly, and a clothes pin and pipe cleaner dragonfly. Little R and I had tons of fun watching caterpillars turn into butterflies and learning about the life cycle. We have watched quite a few tiny caterpillars grow big and turn into butterflies. I think the most fun was exploring our yard for different types of insects. Just in our yard we found roaches, grasshoppers, spiders, ants, beetles, roly polies, bees, moths, earthworms, caterpillars, aphids, butterflies, flies, stink bugs, and a praying mantis. I was thrilled to find the mantis :)
Little R learned the three parts of a bug, but not really where they are on the bug. The most surprising part of this for me has been R's lack of fear. I try soooo hard not to let her see my fear of bugs, but she sometimes picks up on it. I do insist that only Daddies touch spiders though :)
Other activities we completed:
2 videos from the library on Insects and bugs
Counted with bugs
Talked about flyers versus walkers
Watched a lizard eat a bug

Happy learning.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

What My Child Is Reading This Week-Bugs and Insects

We have checked out LOTS of books over the last 2 weeks relating to our bugs and insects theme. Some have been a hit, some not so much. The hits have been The Very Ugly Bug, The Caterpillow Fight, Bob and Otto, The Big Bug Ball, and I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly. The first 2 were read over and over and OVER again. Little R was able to recognize the covers to the first 3 after a few days and would say, "read Bob and Otto" or "read the Caterpillow Fight" when she saw them. Love it!!
Some of the not so liked ones- Manuelo, the Playing Mantis (just didn't hold her attention), Insects Are My Life (probably a bit too advanced), and On Beyond Bugs.
We also read a few books we already had around the house-Ten Little Ladybugs, The Very Hungry Caterpillar and A Bug's Life.
I will post soon about some of our bug/insect themed activities.

All of our Ocean Theme Activities

As mentioned in a previous post, our first theme for practicing preschool was Oceans. We did lots of craft projects, read many books, and watched Shark Week and a few ocean related movies (The Reef, The Little Mermaid). I thought I would combine all of our craft and learning activities into one big post with pictures :)
Things we made/did:
craft foam crab
Ocean theme collage with magazine cutouts
Mixed media collage with stickers, seashells, tissue paper seaweed
painted seashells
counting with seashells
paperplate fishbowl
bead covered cardboard starfish
sticker fish/fishbowl counting
ate Goldfish and whale crackers
Fed the fish in our saltwater tank
Observed fish and hermit crabs in our tank
Field trip to St. Andrew's Bay

AND a still have to do-hand and footprints in wet sand. Bad mommy for putting this one off :(

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

She's Three-3-tres

My little one turned 3 a few days ago. I can't believe my baby is 3 already. It's one of those situations where it seemd like just yesterday and forever ago at the same time that she was a tiny little thing who barely stayed awake for more than an hour at a time. I distinctly remember calling the hubby super excited to tell him she stayed awake for more than 15 minutes of our daily walk. I actually called him multiple times to say "she's still awake" as we walked. Now, we look at each other at 11:00 pm and say "Wow, she's still awake" but it has a totally new meaning. Yes, I have a little night owl/energizer bunny.
At one time in my life, I was adamant I was not having children. I was perfectly happen be childless and carefree. Then, something changed. Maybe it was the biological clock, maybe it was God, whatever it was, it happened and I found myself longing for a baby. She is definitely a gift from God and I couldn't imagine life without her.
Happy Birthday to my amazing, beautiful, loving, energetic, funny, adorable, loved, bouncy, sassy, and wonderful little girl. I love you always and forever to the moon and back.