Monday, June 17, 2013

Adventures at the Zoo- Week 2

My boys and I just finished up our 2nd week using Mother Goose Time's A to Zoo preschool curriculum.  Week two proved to be equally as enjoyable as week one.  Each day my boys were excited to learn and they never forgot which animal came next, nor did they let me forget! 

F for Fox

Monday we studied foxes.  We discussed the features of a fox, the color of their fur and how they look similar to dogs.  I explained how they are mammals and their babies drink milk from the mama fox.  Our fox pages were added to our collector's rings, we went over the letter F, the sound it makes and other words that begin with F.

After our calender and circle time we headed on over to the desks for a craft. F shaped foxes were the craft of the day.  So adorable!

Each month Mother Goose Time includes a storytelling scene with storytelling pieces.  This month's set was included in the day 6 day bag.  It included a zoo back drop with a variety of animals.  We talked about each animal in detail and whether or not they are friendly or mean.  I then asked the kids which of these animals would be nice to a fox.  The boys concluded that only a Llama would be nice to a fox.  Hmmmm...they might be right!

Our next activity on Fox day was making baby bottles out of paper and numbering them 1-12.  I flipped the bottles over and had the boys pick a number.  They then had to say the number on the bottle and then put them in order.  Since Little E is 5 years old he was a wiz at this, but J bug had a bit of trouble.  It was a good learning exercise for him though.

G for Gorilla

My boys love gorillas, I was especially excited to teach them on day 7.  They grabbed their stuffed animal gorilla to join in and we got started.  During our circle time we sang a silly rhyme about gorillas, listened to the G is for Gorilla song on the A to Zoo Animals CD and read the gorilla page out of our "Y is for Yak" alphabet book. 

The craft for the day was a gorilla mask. The boys got to color and paste and afterward had fun pretending to be gorillas.  They learned that gorillas walk on their knuckles. I dared them to give it a try (see picture below).  Even baby brother joined in!  Of course he always crawls on all fours so I'm not so sure that counts! Haha.

We also discussed how Gorillas communicate by using grunts and noises, but how some gorillas have learned to communicate using sign language.  I taught the boys the sign for "zoo" using the Mother Goose Time sign language card that came in the gorilla day bag. Then I played a short video for them showing a gorilla using sign language.  They thought that was pretty cool!

H for Hippo

Included in the day 8 day bag was an Animals A to Z "I can Read" book.  These little books contain each letter of the alphabet with it's coordinating animal and an easy sentence such as, "A is for Alligator." The pages are in black & white and can be colored for an extra activity.  I had my boys write their names on the front cover (J bug had a little help from big brother) and then they colored a few pages in their books.  After this I brought out some scratch paper and they practiced writing the letter H.  I was surprised my 3 year old already knew how.  He said, "I do it myself" and out came some perfect H's on his age!  

Lastly, we got to do a fun little science experiment.  The boys had to put their hands in a bowl of warm water and ice water and then put them into a bowl of room temperature water to feel the difference.  They discovered the hand that went from warm to room temp. felt cold and that the cold water one felt warm going in.  The boys enjoyed this and we talked all about how hippos love to play in water. 

I for Ibis

I know what your probably thinking, "what in the world is an Ibis?"  I was thinking that too!  It goes to show you we adults are not as smart as we think.  You learn something new everyday! An Ibis is a long legged, wading bird who feeds on small animals it finds in the mud such as frogs, fish, and bugs.

For this Ibis lesson we discussed nutrition and what we humans eat compared to the diet of the Ibis.  We talked about the different food groups and grouped them together on our food groups mat.

The main activity for the day was a fun little work sheet included in the day bag.  The boys got to cut out the Ibis's favorite foods and then "feed" the Ibis using a straw to lift the food and then drop it on the picture of the Ibis.  This was actually a bit of a challenge.  J bug caught on real quick, but poor Little E got frustrated to tears and could not figure it out.  I showed him several times how to suck in the straw to lift the papers, but he couldn't get it.  Poor guy, I felt so bad!

We ended our Ibis lesson by building a "nest".  I made paper eggs for the nest and had the boys count them as I added them in.  They took turns sitting on the eggs and pretending to be the Daddy "Ibis".  Did you know that both the mom and dad Ibis sit the eggs?  Interesting isn't it? 

J for Jellyfish and K for Kangaroo 

Day 10 was actually a combination day for both J and K.  During circle time we sang a song about jellyfish and kangaroos to the tune of "Farmer in the Dell" and then the boys got to add 2 pictures to their collector's rings.

I attached their Mother Goose Time's world map to the wall and we went over all the different countries and which animals live there.  The boys both liked the animals from Africa best of all. We also looked at the details on the Australian flag and talked about how Australia is the home of the kangaroo.

While on the subject of Kangaroos, we discussed how the mama Kangaroo has a pouch to carry her baby joey.  I made the boys "pouches" out of aprons to carry their animal babies.  They loved this and don't they look adorable?

Our project for the day was a big, double sided, writing practice sheet.  The lesson plan book suggested having the kids "hop" to their writing project before getting started.  I placed some sticky notes on the carpet and had my boys hop to each circle.  They loved hopping like Kangaroos and enjoyed the fun maze on their worksheet.  J bug wasn't to excited about writing out the alphabet and didn't get past "B", but Little E (who is 1 1/2 years older) got really into it.  He is improving so much!  Look how well he did with his letters by just eye balling how to form them (bottom right photo).

Tomorrow we learn about Llamas and as a special treat I have arranged a field trip to a local Llama farm!  Check back next week to see how it went.

See my previous Mother Goose Time posts:

Disclaimer - Mother Goose Time sent me their curriculum in exchange for review. All opinions are mine, I was not committed to write favorably. I received no other compensation. I am disclosing this information in compliance with the FTC Regulations.
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Eden's Mommy said...

Love the nest and kangaroo pouches! Very cute.

Sarah J. said...

Looks like the boys are thoroughly enjoying the curriculum! :)

Lyndsay said...

The gorilla masks are so fun. Love the picture of the boys walking like gorillas too. I think it's great you are teaching your boys preschool at home.

Jodi Faye said...

Cute stuff! It is great how the curriculum covers so many areas like science, geography, writing, reading ...and all while they are just having fun :)

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