Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Preschool Book Study

One of my daughter's favorite books is Emily's Tiger by Miriam Latimer. We had read this book so many times that I decided it was a great book to use for some literature based activities.

We started off with some letter recognition activities. First off, T is for Tiger. My daughter cut out a T and then colored it like a tiger.

She is starting to recognize the words in the titles of books so she used our magnetic letters to spell out Emily's Tiger on a cookie sheet.

After reading the book many times over, we talked about what else might have happened to the characters in the book. Then it was time for her to illustrate one of her ideas. Here we have Emily happily practicing soccer at the park while her Granny cheers her on from the bench. My little artist chose to illustrate a time when both Emily and her Granny were happy people. She also noted some details in the illustrations in the book that she wanted to ensure were in her drawing, like the bow in Emily's hair.

In the book, Emily has difficulty controlling her temper but she lovingly receives guidance from her Granny on this matter. This book is a great read with lively and colorful illustrations. It also opened the door for my daughter and I to discuss what is appropriate behavior in various situations. 

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Fun on the Farm

I try to include sensory activities at home. For this activity, we added lentils, small plastic pumpkins, silk leaves, take apart nesting barrels and small farm toys. These few items allowed my daughter to scoop, count, make noise makers and simply play.

Our favorite story for this theme is Driving my Tractor. This colorful book uses humor, repetition and rhythm to tell the tale of a farmer and his animals chugging along through the 4 seasons.  All my children love to listen to the CD and sing along with Steve Songs. At the end of the story, there is info on various  farm machinery and crops. 

Driving my Tractor
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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Letter Fun

Letter stickers have been a great addition to our home sticker collection. They are particularly useful when children have not yet mastered printing all the letters. My children have often used them to spell out their friend's names on birthday cards.

Today, my daughter came up with a new way to use her stickers. She was in the process of making one large Valentine's card for her preschool class. She had already printed the words that she wanted on the card. She decided to add letter stickers to the card. She carefully matched up each letter sticker to the letter that she had already printed.

Matching letter stickers to printed letters is a fun way to reinforce letter recognition and work on fine motor skills. An early elementary school aged child could use letter stickers as another way to practice their spelling words.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Letters All Around

When I first walked into my eldest child's preschool classroom, I was struck by how many labels and words I was surrounded by. Most objects in the room had a neatly printed label on them - window, chair, door, etc. The children in this classroom were exposed to words even when they were not sitting down with a book. There was a clipboard for them to "sign in" even though most of them did not even have the ability to print when they first started preschool.

From this experience, I realized that it is important to give children the opportunity to encounter letters and words on a regular basis. A laminated placemat with the alphabet on it, magnetic letters to play with at the refrigerator (or on a cookie sheet), alphabet theme puzzles, etc. All of these activities will help to strengthen letter recognition. Singing the alphabet song while playing adds to the fun.