Saturday, October 10, 2009

Tot School - The Letter X

~James is 29 months~

Our letter of the week was Xx. We also had fun with Halloween-y type stuff. :)
Art & Music:
We made this "x-ray" X by cutting "bones" out of black construction paper and then coloring the bones with white chalk.

Once a week we attend an outdoor art class. Sadly, James is showing a real disinterest in all things crafty. (I'm SO bummed!) I did manage to get him to stamp a few of these images before his anti-crafting rally began. ;)

James enjoyed singing songs and banging away on his new xylophone. We made up some funny Dr. Seuss type songs about the letter X. (the fox with polka-dot sox ate lox in a box) :) Another time we made up color and shape songs and "played" the shapes with rhythm sticks.

Letters & Numbers:
Desperate for X ideas, I put together this tic-tac-toe game using some foam letters I had on hand. I think James *almost* understood the game.

James practiced his tracing skills on this erasable letter card. This kept his attention for a good 20 minutes - he'd color in the X, then erase the card and start all over again.

Our outdoor alphabet - you can never go wrong with sidewalk chalk!

Another (far-reaching) X idea - James got a (small) kick out of this treasure map I made for him. He moved his little ship along the dotted lines to find where X marked the spot. :)

A very exciting thing happened this week - James learned how to read and spell his name! I found these big wooden letters at Michael's when I was pregnant and planned to paint them and hang them in his nursery. 2.5 years later and they're no where near a wall. :)

I've also been working on letter sounds with James - here's a video clip of him sounding out the letters in his name. It's hard to hear him say "mmm" and his "a" needs some fine-tuning, but otherwise he did a GREAT job!

I made these little pumpkin stick manipulatives. James had fun sorting them in numerical order into these popsicle containers.

Calling out numbers while playing with a number mat.

Science & Nature:
I made this little sensory display for James. He spent so much time exploring the gourds, talking about which were bumpy and which were smooth.

We took a long walk around the Botanical Gardens.

We had a playdate at the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute (BUEI). They have a simulator there that James loves and lots of other fun things to explore.

Other fun activities:
Since he was so keen on matching last week, I thought these homemade Halloween matching cards would be a hit. Silly mommy - I laid them out, he took one look at them and proceeded to clean them up.

Pouring - James did a great job pouring water and mini erasers from one container to another. I love the look of satisfaction and concentration on his face. This is hard work for little ones! :)

James was very focused on arranging like shapes in a line. There are so many fun things you can do with these shapes from this Melissa & Doug puzzle.

These opposites cards were a HUGE hit this week. James amazed Paul and I by recalling 95% of the cards after seeing them only once before.
This falls in line with something we've noticed this week - it's as though a switch flipped on inside James' brain. Suddenly he's talking & understanding so much more. One warm day he said to me, "Outside is hot. James is hot. Is Mama hot?" We've been having little conversations all week and I'm loving it!

I've been working on creating a more independent environment for James. I created accessible learning stations in his playroom - click here to see more pics. I moved his shoes to an area where he can get them, I created a little section inside the refrigerator where he can help himself to healthy snacks and I've been letting him pour his own drinks (with a little help) :) He is LOVING his new independence and I can see his self-confidence growing.

Click on the button to the left to see what others are doing with their tots!


Susan said...

Where do I even start? HIS NAME! What a very big boy. He did a great job. I'm very impressed at his water pouring. The gourd idea is terrific as were your X activities. The playroom is so roomy. You did a great job with the stations too.

Counting Coconuts said...

Thanks, Susan!!


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