Sunday, November 1, 2009

Tot School - The Letter U

~James is 30 months~
We explored the letter Uu this week and, of course, spent lots of time doing pumpkin and Halloween related activities (am I the only one who's glad to move on to a different theme?!)

Art & Music:
I was really excited to make our underwater U craft this week since I thought it up myself! (hooray for original ideas once in a while!) James had a lot of fun making this - the crayons, the glue, the little fishy stickers - all a big hit.

James had a friend over and we decorated pumpkins. I was sooo excited to see how interested and focused James was in doing this activity. (dare I wonder if the anti-arts & crafts saga has passed?)

In Kindermusik we learned a new song, El Coqui, which means frog in Spanish. We all had to bring in a frog sound to play with the music. Just so happens we had this adorable frog instrument in our stash!

Letters & Numbers:
  • We played with these fun alphabeads. James is suddenly interested in lacing things, so these beads were perfect for us.
  • I made these counting cookies for James. He LOVED them. I made 6 cookies and each cookie has "chocolate chips" on them for him to count (0-5).
  • We revisited many of our pumpkin/Halloween learning tools, such as these pumpkin counting sticks I made.
Science & Nature:
Fall is officially here, so we spent plenty of time outside going for walks and exploring the yard.

We talk about Uranus and the universe - this site is a great resource for astronomy and space related topics for kids.

Practical Life:
James is all about independence these days. He wants to do everything on his own, which is great of course, but bittersweet for me. :) We've added a step-stool to his bathroom and he is thrilled about the fact that he can help himself to a good hand washing or tooth-brushing session any time he wants!

  • I made some orange rice, which James used to practice his pouring skills. He did a fantastic job!
  • I got this CUTE apron from Montessori Services. One day while I was making dinner James noticed my apron. He wanted to wear his so he could "yook yike mama". Awww!

  • Another U activity - playing with our USA puzzle. I had one of these when I was a kid and I l.o.v.e.d it. Such a great learning tool. James can identify several states on the map now!
  • We also read Scrambled States of America, a funny tale about US states and how they want to relocate.

Other activities:
I found this pumpkin matching/puzzle game on Confessions of a Homeschooler. Initially I set out only 5 puzzle sets in a basket, but after quickly matching them up James asked for more.

We talked about how umbrella and under start with the letter U. James had fun playing with the umbrella.

I created this uncle matching game to go along with our U theme. I printed out 2 pictures each of all of James' uncles. Seeing as we live so far from family and that we don't see them more than once a year at best, this activity was a wonderful way to familarize James with family members. Coincidentally, the day after I created this, one of his uncles decided to come to Bermuda over Christmas. Now James will recognize and be able to greet him by name when he arrives!

Once again I dipped into our game cabinet and found more great learning tools. James sorted these poker chips by color and spent a looong time playing with the peg game.

Our color this week was brown. It was surprisingly difficult to find this many brown things!

A beautiful thing happened this week. We say grace before each meal and one night before dinner, James surprised us by signing the cross to himself and saying, "Father, Son & Holy Spirit"! He also memorized half of our mealtime blessing. Paul and I were very moved to hear those words come out of our little man. :)

Click on these buttons to see what others are teaching their children.


sbswtp said...

What a fantastic week!!! I love all the U activities- the Uncle Matching was a great idea :)

Michelle said...

Wow I love your activities what a wonderful week!

Nicole {tired, need sleep} said...

You had a great week! We have been a little "pumpkined-out" around here too - I thought Halloween would never come, lol! The last part of your post is so sweet - we have had the same experience with M saying grace, and it just melts our hearts. He just recently began blessing himself with holy water at Mass on Sundays and it's so sweet, he does his shoulders first, then his head and ears, lol. SO sweet!! :) I don't have the heart to correct him.

Susana said...

Your weeks are so fun and filled with the best learning activities. I am amazed at all you do and the creativity level of it.

I love your letter "Uu" picture, painted pumpkins and counting cookies this week!

Thanks for linking up!

Susan said...

What a terrific week. Your little man is really growing up - brushing his teeth, saying prayers. *happy sigh* Your U ideas are great - as always!!

Jen said...

OMG are you REALLY creative!! Those cookies are just too cute.

It's wonderful you allow James to be independent, he'll benefit greatly because of it.

DB said...

That Uncle matching game is too cool!! Great activities, that little apron is so sweet! He is such a good boy.
P.S. Cookies - drowning man here!

Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

Great week. It's wonderful when our little ones take responsibilities of their own voluntarily. James sounds like a bright and determined boy.

Counting Coconuts said...

Thank you for your kind words and encouragement!!


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