The Food Groups- “Health and Fitness: Week 1

We are loving learning about the different food groups as part of our “Health and Fitness” unit with Mother Goose Time! The children are quickly learning what food belongs in which group, why the different food groups are important, and how to create a balanced meal. We have had so much fun extending the food group lessons that Mother Goose Time has sent us!51078358_10156152407711527_1941098572367790080_o.jpg
51743194_376806186203854_1809375090790367232_n (1).jpg

Our Pre-K class made their very own food pyramids. I used small poster board to make them each a pyramid. I printed out outlines of different food from every food group for each student. They colored and cut them out, and then they glued down their food in the correct food group. This hands-on activity created a great visual to really further their learning of what foods make up the different food groups.

37E6D20F-A487-4A2A-BED8-7B17AB46AECCOur preschool class used the same food outlines that Pre-K used, but they did a “What’s on my plate?” activity with them. They created a balanced meal on their plate using the different food pieces. This extended their learning of the food groups by learning what foods can create a balanced meal.

We have really enjoyed all of the materials that Mother Goose Time has sent us for our first week of the Health and Fitness unit. The cow puppets from “Lesson 4: Dairy”, are really cute and they all turned out so different! Pre-K cut out all of the pieces themselves and had fun constructing their cow puppets. They were surprised to learn that a cow has four stomachs!

To wrap up our first week of “Health and Fitness”, we did a taste test. We put out foods that they would recognize, as well as some new things, like Dragon Fruit. We let them try all the items and try to put them into the correct food group. It was so fun to see how much they have learned these past few days- Even our Wobblers got to give it a try!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Thank you, Mother Goose Time for all of the fun lessons and supplies! Our “Health and Fitness” unit is off to a great start!

Advertisements

Letters!

With Mother Goose Time, We have three focus letters each month. We love extending our learning on these different letters by doing fun writing projects or art. Our Pre-K class is creating their very own alphabet book using their hand prints. For the month of February (Health and Fitness) our letters are A, G, and Q. We created hungry alligators for the letter “A” and gloves for the letter “G”.

For example, at the top of their paper I put “A is for Alligator” with their alligator hand print below. 51561966_371303453651427_5370532363681923072_n.jpgAt the bottom of their page I put the month, year, and their name. It is fun to look back and see how much their hands have grown since September. At the end of the year we will put all of their letters in the correct order creating a fun keepsake book for them to take home at graduation.

I also love using big letter outlines and combining art/writing. For the letter “G” I cut out purple circles for “Grapes”, since we have been learning all about the food groups. They glued their grapes inside of the letter G outline and at the bottom of their page they wrote “Grapes.”

 

51559169_10156152589331527_5311992234315350016_oWe use the included MGT letter materials as part of our daily lessons. We love the Loose Letter Parts that are included this year, as well as the Pocket Cube cards with coordinating activities. It is so fun extending our learning with the different letters each month, and these extra activities really help with their letter recognition!

Visit the Mother Goose Time Website for more fun and learning at https://www.mothergoosetime.com

Vegetables

In our previous post, we mentioned the Member Resources page on the Mother Goose Time website. As part of our “Health and Fitness” unit (February 2019), I printed the Vegetable Puzzles on the Member resources, just because I thought they were cute, but then when I looked in the Little Goose Teacher Guide (ages 18 months-2.5 years), it all made sense! These vegetables were to create a Tray Play activity, and they loved it!

This activity was simple and fun. I printed the names of the vegetables to add a language element and laminated all the pieces so they will hopefully last for the month. 🙂

Tray Play activities are such a great style of activity for this age group. Parallel play is very common and sharing can be challenging, so having a defined space for the pieces for each child, gives them a safe place to work at their own speed.

51166583_1963774357009587_629420087064920064_n

Since we already had the outlines made and the children were requesting a painting project, we turned our vegetable puzzle into art! We talked about the different colors of the vegetables and tried to paint the outlines with the same colors.51398387_383224985569026_6659847018699030528_n

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information about the Mother Goose Time program, visit their website at https://www.mothergoosetime.com/

Children Must Play!

So much research has been done on the benefits of play to the development of young children. It stimulates their creativity, math and reasoning skills, artistic and scientific thought, social interactions, and linguistic abilities. On the NAEYC website, there is a collection of articles on play-based learning and why it is so important to development in young children (this may also be a good resource to share information with families in your care).

So, as an early childhood educator, I am just supposed to watch them play? Wrong!

We are there to provide play-based opportunities to learn and that is where Mother Goose Time comes in. We are so thankful for a curriculum that looks at the whole child and provides the framework for learning with so much freedom. With a new theme each month, our classrooms rotate books, games, puzzles, and toys to meet the theme. After 4 weeks of playing with and reading those, they are ready for something new. But, how do we decide what to put out on the shelves? Mother Goose Time to the rescue again!

Screenshot 2019-01-28 at 1.01.48 PM.png

Mother Goose Time has developed Experience Play Toy Boxes that can be added to the curriculum subscription. At this point in the life of our program, we have a number of these suggested items already, but we use this part of the MGT website as a resource to see what we should pull from our collection. That usually leads us to more ideas of things we can add, since we have 5 classrooms in which to provide.

For the Month of February 2019, our theme is Health and Fitness. Our toys, games, and books are all centered around being active and healthy.

screenshot 2019-01-28 at 1.11.02 pmscreenshot 2019-01-28 at 1.10.41 pm

Mother Goose Time also provides a Recommended Book List under their Member Resources. We use this to collect books from our own bookshelves, as well as the public library. The children are always so excited to check out all the new books when we begin a unit.screenshot 2019-01-28 at 1.04.57 pm

Here are some things that will be on our classroom shelves this month in addition to the MGT suggestions above!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

The Beetles

No, not the band… the kind you might see if you go on a Safari!

Today was all about Beetles and our children were so intrigued with the Beetle Design poster that came with our Invitation to Create.

50898541_10156126785576527_3517807712706494464_n.jpg

Our preschool class was able to cut out and decorate their Beetles with glitter glue, sequins and gems.

For our Littles, their teacher drew a simple leaf on a piece of green paper, and they used Do-A-Dot markers to make their beetles. We counted them and will add legs when they are dry later, but it was a simple and fun activity, given that we didn’t have much class time due to the beautiful sunshine outside. 🙂

We essentially combined two activities from the Little Goose Lesson plan book. We love that Mother Goose Time is comprehensive , and flexible at the same time.50924313_10156126785451527_3647671769797492736_n50735985_10156126785366527_7197623786546397184_n

 

 

 

And just for some added cuteness, take a peak at the sweet Elephants our infant class made! I googled “Elephant Drawing”, and printed a simple one. Then I traced everything but the ears, and copied enough for each child. We made the footprints on another piece of paper and then put it all together. Sometimes art creations are just as much fun for the teachers as they are for the kids!

Thanks to Mother Goose Time for all the fun we have had “Going on Safari” in the month of January!51014156_10156126785721527_2140065522220269568_n

Safari So Good!

We are halfway through our January “Going on Safari” unit with Mother Goose Time and we have been having so much fun! The children are loving learning about the different animals and cultural traditions from a different part of the world. We have five different classrooms at our school, ranging in ages from 12 weeks to 5 years, and we really enjoy seeing how the different classrooms use the Mother Goose Time curriculum. Here are just a few highlights from this week!hm_collage_mini_magick20190112-4-je27fa.jpg

Our Pre-K class has set up their sensory table with a safari land of their own, complete with a watering hole, grasslands, and the animals that Mother Goose Time sent us this month! It is so fun to see the children use their imaginations at the sensory table. This brought up a great discussion about what animals eat, and how they survive in that type of habitat.

Our classes have been having a lot of fun with Dramatic play this month. We used large cardboard boxes to make Safari Jeeps. We have had fun pretending to be driving around looking for animals. We cut out windows and a sunroof and taped the edges so that they weren’t sharp. It is fun to hear about all of the fun adventures that they go on with their Jeep! All you need is a big cardboard box to be able to create a fun dramatic play experience!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Our Wobbler classroom painted their very own giraffe! Their teacher drew a giraffe on a big piece of paper, taped it to the floor, and our Wobblers had fun dancing on the blank canvas before they began painting. Some of them jumped right in and started painting, while some observed before deciding they wanted to try it too. It is hard to tell if they had more paint on themselves, or the giraffe, but messy art is fun art!

 

Our Infants made lion masks out of paper plates and craft sticks! This was a new experience for our little ones and I think they liked it!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Mother Goose Time provides so many fun avenues for authentic learning and fun for all of our children, and the teachers like it too!

“S” is for Super!

This week in “Going on Safari” with Mother Goose Time, we are focusing on the letter S. During circle time we came up with a list of words that start with the letter S, like we do with each of our focus letters. This is the longest list our Pre-K class has made so far this year! They discovered that there are plenty of words that start with the letter S.  It is a great way to practice those letter sounds, because when they say a word they have to hear the correct sound that we are looking for. If their word doesn’t start off with the sound we are looking for, they get to try again.

Today we took an outline of the letter S (found in the Mother Goose Time Member Resources), traced over the outline, and played a game spelling the sight words for the letter S – sock, sun, and snake.

49948421_584910568627960_5602772558320500736_n

We filled the pocket cube with the three pictures and words that came in our Daily Kit for the letter S, and we took turns rolling the cube. Once the cube was rolled they said what word they landed on – or what the picture was. We then spelled the word out loud together. They wrote the word that they landed on inside their letter S. If they landed on a picture then they had to find the correct word to spell it. We practiced sounding out the words as we were spelling them. The trickiest part of this activity seemed to be writing the letter S the right direction (we will keep practicing!).
We kept going around the circle until everyone had each word written once. If we had more time, to practice further, we would keep going until all of the words were written a couple of times.

This activity is a great way to practice those fine motor skills, sounding out words, letter and word recognition, and writing our words smaller. These are big skills to be working on as we prepare for Kindergarten. We focused on writing our words from left to right and keeping our letters close together so that it was all part of one word. They all did a great job and we will be putting these into their portfolios as a writing sample for January. It is amazing the growth in just a few short months with Mother Goose Time!

“Passports”

Today is our first day back from Winter Break and we were excited to come back to a new unit! We kicked off the new unit, “Going on Safari” (MGT January 2019), with Lesson 1- Passport. Take a look at all the fun that MGT has laid out in the Teacher Guide! Our Daily kit included a new rubber stamp, a kid-friendly world map, Safari themed name tags, Pocket cube cards, a passport for each child, and so much more!49181236_641817706237738_4175799189239758848_n.jpgWe started off by everyone signing in for the day, followed by our name tags. The children love choosing their name tag for the month – there are always fun designs! We talked about when they might sign their name, as prompted in the Mother Goose Time Teacher Guide. The children said they would sign their name on projects so that they know who’s project it is. In Pre-K, we have them practice writing their name on their work so that they are in that routine for kindergarten. Signing in for the day is a great way to practice writing their name.

At circle time we talked about passports, and when we would use one. We started the Passport Stamp activity by reviewing the World Map that Mother Goose Time sent us.

The children had fun exploring the different things on the map. They shared what they saw and we talked about the different oceans. We named each continent and what color it was. We then opened up our Passports and matched the continents in our passport to the continent on the map. 49571352_629467547470670_8079008984729649152_nThey took turns matching, and once everyone agreed that the continents matched, they stamped their passports. This was a fun activity to review colors, shapes (matching the outline of the continent in their passport to the one on the map), and a great opportunity to talk about the oceans, and what parts of the world may be warm or cold (South America is warmer, Antarctica is cold). We talked about the Pacific Ocean (our ocean), and how it is colder where we are, but warm in Hawaii.

 

 

The Continent Toss game was just as fun. Once they rolled the cube to land a continent, they found that same continent on the map and told us what color it was, and what continent they thought it was. The World Map that Mother Goose Time sends us is very kid friendly and easy to read, and they love all of the pictures that are on the map!

Stay tuned for more Safari adventures with Mother Goose Time this month!

 

Polar Express Day- A Holiday Tradition!

aec.whv38954dvd_0It has become a Holiday tradition that the day before Winter Break is “Polar Express Day”. The children wear their pajamas to school and we watch the movie, complete with hot chocolate and popcorn. To start of the festivities, we do a book exchange. Each child brings the gift of a book for another child in his/her class, and we exchange our gifts before we start the movie. Our children get so excited about giving

48425344_10156059414376527_1363800133937922048_n

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Next up is movie time! Like all little people, sitting still through an entire movie is not a reality, so we look to Mother Goose Time for some fun activities to have available for those that need to keep their hands busy. We looked ahead in our Teacher Guide and Daily kits to find some activities that matched up nicely for the occasion.48387804_10156054318126527_6811048825503875072_o.jpg

We made the best type of sugar and calorie free cookies- Art!
48923743_10156052324136527_6235648006704594944_n

In this activity, children got to decorate pretend cookies. They had so much fun with the colored sprinkles and “frosting”. It was interested how the sprinkles turned the frosting different colors.

48405536_10156052303871527_5946514622268833792_nWe had some leftover gingerbread scented play dough and the children have really enjoyed it with festive cookie cutters. We love the MGT STEAM ideas!

Simple and sweet- the children enjoyed these patterned cards and it made for a simple activity they could do independently during the movie.

The Stocking Station was very popular. The children decorated their stockings with the materials available and then sewed them together with white yarn. These turned out so cute and were the perfect task for the occasion.  We are so thankful for Mother Goose Time kits that have the materials we need, all cut out, and enough for everyone!

From all of us at Wonder Early Learning Center, Happy Holidays! Thank you for sharing your journey with all of us!49017895_10156059412671527_8759714730815258624_nHere are just a few more pictures from our celebration!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Winter Days and Winter Nights

Since we are closed next week for our Winter Break, we are doubling up on our lessons this week, and we are doing a little rearranging too to fit it all in. Today we decided to talk about Winter Days and Winter Nights (lessons 19 & 20 in Dec. “Sights and Sounds”- Mother Goose Time). These two lessons paired perfectly and we really enjoyed our activity time together. Mother Goose Time comes complete for each day, but offers a lot of flexibility and creativity for our teachers as well.48377723_10156050642891527_3856800071106428928_n.jpg

Our Pre-K class set up the following stations to explore today: Winter Diorama, Winter Postcard, Night Sight, and Winter Solstice.48382334_10156050643041527_7794692882857721856_n

48383285_10156050643256527_2248233693749444608_n

We love that Mother Goose Time includes STEAM  Station ideas in the front of the teacher lesson plan book. We set up our Winter Diorama today. We used the foil to create the ‘ice’ and cotton balls to create the snow. The children have loved playing with our winter animals this month, but it was even more fun having this winter scene set up for them. During the Winter Diorama activity we talked about what animals we see in the winter and why their fur gets thicker, along with other ways they might stay warm when it is cold out.

48398915_196024247919374_220115867034189824_n

For the postcards, we talked about what sounds we hear in the winter and what some of their favorite sights are. Many children said they like hearing the birds singing, and one of their favorite sights of winter were snowmen! They explained what was on their postcard and we wrote it on the back after deciding who they wanted to send their postcard to.

The children loved the Night Sight activity. We started this activity by reviewing the letters b, c and r (our focus letters for this month) and we put the letter cards in the pocket cube. We practiced the letter sounds and talked about what sound ‘a’ and ‘t’ make when they are next to each other, the “at” family. They took turns rolling the cube and if they landed on a letter, they said what letter it was, what sound it makes, and then placed it on the owl to complete the word. If they rolled a picture they told us what the picture was, and then found the letter that made the same sound they heard in the word when they told us what the picture was. We love that Mother Goose Time adds a “simplify” or “challenge” option in some of their activities. We challenged the children today to say each letter sound in the word to show them how we sound out words as we read.

The Winter Solstice activity was also fun. They worked together to line up the strips from shortest to longest, and vice versa. They recognized that when they lined up the strips they made a pyramid or the shape of a Christmas Tree.

We ended our class time by gathering together to read a story. We read “Goodbye Autumn, Hello Winter”. 48405517_349503999184291_6900411143425097728_n.jpgAs we read, we took the opportunity to talk about the seasons, what is different about each season, and how we know winter is approaching (it gets colder, it gets dark earlier, etc.). This story was a great way to end our lessons on Winter Days and Winter Nights.

 

For more information about Mother Goose Time, head on over to their website at https://www.mothergoosetime.com/