Monday, June 10, 2013

Zoo Fun- Week One...

As I mentioned previously I am using Mother Goose Times "A to Zoo Animals" curriculum with my two preschool aged boys this June.  This is the review month and so we will be covering the entire alphabet, shapes, colors and counting from 1 to 20.  We will also be learning a different zoo animal each day.

A for Alligator-  Monday the 3rd was our first day and my boys woke up bright and early eager to get started.  I put in the Circle Time CD and we sat and sang the opening song together.  Next, we sang the Days of the Week song and then added the number piece to the calender.  

I had my boys run outside to check the weather before adding the weather symbol to the weather chart. It was obviously sunny, look at them squinting in the sun! 

This month's theme includes an Animals A-Z collector ring for each child. They add their daily animal picture card to the ring. On day 1 we added the first page which is their Zookeeper ID, complete with picture and name. My boys thought this was so much fun!  Next, we added our Alligator page and this opened up some great discussion time. We talked all about the letter A and what else starts with an A. We talked about Alligators, where they live, what they eat, and that their babies hatch from eggs. My favorite part was when I asked my boys what type of animal an Alligator is and Little E replied, "T-Rex"!  Oh, what a funny boy! 

Our craft for the day was making fun Alligator heads out of pizza boxes.  Once they were complete my boys ran around the room pretending to be alligators, making chomping sounds and chasing each other around!

We ended the day by reading the first page of the "Y for Yak" zoo alphabet book and singing songs.  Each day's lesson plan includes lyrics to songs that coordinate with the day's lesson.  All the songs are sung to familiar tunes to make it easy to sing along.  Day 1 we sang, "Do you know the Alligator" sung to the tune of "The Muffin Man". 

B for Bird-  Day 2 was all about birds!  We discussed the different types of birds, which birds fly and which do not, how birds hatch from eggs (just like alligators) and how the mama bird feeds her babies.  We discussed the difference between mammals and non-mammals.  My boys are so excited during discussion time, each one talking at the same time, "Mama! Mama! Mama!"  They always have something to say.

Day 2 Day Bag 

We covered the calender and weather, added our bird page to our collector rings, and made feathery bird stick puppets.  

Next, we went on a color hunt.  I laid 10 colored birds on the carpet face down and the boys took turns picking a bird and then having that bird "fly" around the room to find it's matching color.  My boys got pretty creative finding the matching colors.  They even found their matches on each others clothing!  (see top right photo below)

We closed our day with a bird color sheet, read page 2 in our animal alphabet book, discussing the sounds different birds make, and sang the "Good-bye" song.  My baby even likes to join in when I turn on the music.  He bops up and down and claps his hands!

C for Camel- Day 3 we learned about Camels and the letter C. We made the C sound and talked about other words that start with C.  We discussed how camels live in desserts where it is very hot. We sang a song about camels and listened to the "C is for Camel" song on the A to Zoo Animals music CD.  We also added our camel pictures to our collector's rings and went over all the features of the camel and how different we are compared to a camel.  We also discussed what is means to be generous and how camels can be generous.  My boys decided camels are generous because they can give people rides and walk for a long time.  

New to the week was introducing the "My Journal" writing notebooks. Each child receives one of these notebooks per month.  Great for practicing writing skills and going over what we've learned.  I had my boys decorate the fronts of their notebooks with a drawing of themselves and they wrote their names. J bug is only 3, so I helped him, but Little E is figuring out his letters quite nicely with only a few verbal prompts. 

Lastly, we played a "spy" game.  The boys each picked a spy glass with an animal on it and had to match the animal to the same animal on the zoo animals poster.  Once they made a match they had to do the prompt on the back of the spy glass.  Here they are roaring like tigers...


Day 4 Dolphin Day Bag

D for Dolphin- Thursday morning we headed over to my sister and brother in-laws house in Colorado Springs. Since all the curriculum with Mother Goose Time is separated into day bags, it was so easy for me to pack what we needed for the rest of the week.  We continued our lessons there and it not only kept my boys out of trouble but gave them something fun to do while visiting family.

D was the letter of the day for day 4.  My boys knew the routine at this point and started pointing out things that start with the letter D.  Donkey was their favorite as it matched the new donkey stuffed animals my sister gave them.  Since we were on the topic of dolphins I let the boys watch a short 5 min. video on You Tube that showed some dolphins doing tricks.  They thought it was very fascinating! After this we made our dolphin craft which was a stick dolphin you make jump through a hoop. This was a great fine motor activity as my boys had to color, cut, paste, and then make their dolphins jump through the hoop.

We ended day 4 with a couple fun activities.  We discussed how dolphins love to play with toys and do tricks.  We spread out a blue blanket for our "water" and the boys went on a toy hunt, matching shapes to the toys with the same shape.  

Last activity was to become dolphins and jump through hoops!  I can't even express how much fun my boys had with this one!  

Day 5 Day Bag

E for Elephant- Day 5 was an extra special treat, not only were we learning about elephants but also got to see some up close at the Circus!  What better way to the end the week than to take a field trip to see real life animals.  

This was my boys first time attending a big circus.  Learning about zoo animals all week really helped get them excited.  They loved watching the animal acts most of all.

When we got home we did our elephant lesson.  I love the craft with this one, so cute!  We talked about elephants and how they are the biggest land animal on earth. We made animal sounds, sang our "E is for Elephant" song and read our elephant page in our book.

Our last activity was a puzzle hunt.  I hid pieces to an elephant puzzle throughout our school room and the boys had to find them. It was a hoot listening to the boys make some pretty outrageous elephant sounds as the searched for the puzzle pieces! In the end the boys completed the puzzle.  They were so proud!

I can't say enough good things about Mother Goose Time's preschool curriculum.  My boys have looked forward to their lessons everyday.  In fact, if I don't have the time to start first thing in the morning they are in tears begging to begin!  As a busy mom with 5 kids, I have appreciated the one on one time doing this curriculum has allowed me with my boys each day.  It's not hard, not complicated and my boys are learning while having fun. I can't think of a better way to spend our days!

Coming up next...Fox, Gorilla, Hippo, Ibis, Jellyfish and Kangaroo!  Stay tuned!

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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Carol said...

Oh, how fun! Your boys are so cute. I love all the crafts they made. Thanks for sharing their week with us.

Sarah J. said...

I love the picture of Little E sticking his tongue out at his "T-Rex"! :)

Mama Dee said...

Great pictures! Looks like fun was had by all.

HappilyDomestic said...

Sarah- He sticks his tongue out when he works on projects. :-) So cute!

HappilyDomestic said...

Carol & Mama Dee- Thank You! It was so much fun. said...

I just wanted to say thanks so much for the walk through of Mother Goose Time... I'm currently looking at curriculums for my only child and have decided that a "in the box" kit is a great place to start so we can get in the groove of home schooling without panicking about having the right supplies or creating a daily plan...
Its a huge help in choosing which company to go with to see kids enjoying the daily packets!

Thank you so much for taking the time to document their lessons, i think my choice has been made for me by the excitement on your boys faces at each activity!

HappilyDomestic said...

Angel- Thanks for leaving a comment. I hope your child enjoys MGT as much as mine. We love it and it has been a huge blessing to this busy mama. I don't have time to prepare lessons and MGT makes it so easy. There is lots of support from others that use it and the company on their Facebook page. You should connect with them there.

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