Tot School – Things that Go

(Petra is 33 months, Jasper is 23 months)

If you would like to learn more about Tot School, GO HERE.

We had a fun week with Tot school activities. I switched from letters to theme weeks, and I am very glad that I did. Providing a continuous theme and concept through the week makes so much more sense to me. I still worked in some letter work – Letter I. But our activities around the letter mainly focused around the short-vowel sound, identification, and words that start with a short-vowel sound of “I.”

This week we talked about Things that Go! Transportation was our theme and we spent a lot of time talking and identifying vehicles and other modes of transportation. We even talked about our legs – and how they help us get around.

I noticed recently we weren’t spending much time talking in the car and teaching the children. This is one of the best opportunities to teach your children and I used to do it all the time. So this week I turned off the music more and spent time talking with Petra and Jasper about our theme. We talked about vehicles and roads, and then I posed simple questions: “Name a vehicle that goes on water? Name a vehicle that goes on land?” Can you name another mode of transportation on land?” etc.

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I picked up a lot of stuff at the Goodwill bookstore last week that I plan to post about soon. One of those things was this set of Things That Go Flash Cards by DK Publishing. The children LOVED them. We did a simple read through them several times. And talked about some of the characteristics of each. And then a few days later we sorted them by land, air, water.

Here are some other things we did around our theme this week:

Singing – Wheels on the bus; Down by the station; Row Row Row your Boat. I was especially glad to hear Jasper trying to sing Row your boat – I think we may be doing this one more regularly just to help him improve his speach.

Books – We read two curious george books – one with a bicycle and one with a Dump Truck. They are both in love with Curious George right now. We also read a Tonka Fire Truck book. And A book called My First Airplanes. And numerous other books on tractors, big farm machines, etc.

Lapbook – I made our very first lapbook for Jasper with cars (from the movie)! He asks to watch this movie nearly every day and of course we don’t let him, but he LOVES Lighting McQueen. So I thought this lapbook might be fun. He played with it some. But I do hope it gets some more use in the coming year. You can find these printables online at TOT School.

Coloring – I printed out a race car for the children to color. You can get it from here.

Videos – Daddy showed the children clips of Formula One racing from online. Jasper especially loves this. He will watch racing nonstop and always asks for more when we turn it off. Petra thinks it is fairly boring. I also showed the children clips from You Tube of other children’s first airplane ride. One of the reasons I chose this theme this week is because we are all taking a flight next month to Connecticut. It will be the children’s first airplane ride.

Riding trikes – Like a lot of weeks the children spent time riding their tricycles around the house and driveway. Petra has been so funny lately using nicknames for Jasper. This week she chased him around on the trike and was yelling “I’m going to get you, you little monkey.” This was evidentally loads of fun for them and kept them entertained for about half an hour one evening.

Pretending to drive the car – And of course we had to give them a few minutes to pretend to drive the Tahoe.

Playing with trucks and cars – Jasper especially loved rolling matchbox cars through gift wrap tubes.

We also did some other activities not focused around our theme:

Drawing – Petra did her very first drawing of what actually appears to look like a person! I was so thrilled. She grabbed a dirty peice of construction paper and asked to draw with a pen. I HAD NO IDEA she could do this. None of her other drawing have looked so good. I was flabbergasted and when she finished I had wished I had handed her a clean sheet of paper instead.

Letter I – Our reading lesson this week focused around the short-vowel sound of Letter I. I had also bought a new dictionary book for children- I was dissappointed with the entries for Letter I . It only had 4 entries for the letter I, and all of them were for the long-vowel sound!

Science Experiment – We did a simple experiment in regards to floating and sinking – to follow up on our activity from last week where we put several objects in water to see which ones would float. This week I pulled an experiment from Mudpies to Magnets: A Preschool Science Curriculum. In this experiment you put water and vinegar in a clear glass. Then add a few raisins – they will sink to the bottom. Next, have your child add a spoonful of baking soda and you have the result of bubbles, fizz, and a lot of movement. (like you would with a homemade volcano). The reaction pushes the raisins to the top of the water. It was interesting, and the children liked it enough to ask to do it again. So we did it twice.

Water Fun – We spent some time outside in the water sprinkler and in a bucket of water. Jasper loves this so much more than Petra. He giggles and screams in delight nonstop. She kept asking me to turn it off.

Kumon Sticker and Coloring books – We did a few pages this week from our Kumon books.

Dot Painting – with our dot art markers. Petra was getting very fancy with her dot art this week. She used to use them for just a couple minutes and then say she was done. Now her artwork seems to be progressing, or maybe I just put them away for long enough that she has interest in them again. 

Planting flowers – We also planted a few flowers, and found an EARTHWORM! Jasper wanted to hold him and Petra squeeled and would not touch him.

I’ve managed to plan out our next few weeks of themes for Tot School and I’m very excited with what’s coming up!

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