Friday, September 1, 2017

Apples for Days!


Happy September! I am so happy to be back in the swing of things after a fantastic summer! Rex is back in school (1st grade!) and I am home with Livi each day! I am thankful for this season of life and that I am able to be available for my kids. I definitely try to make the most of it while doing TpT during nap time as well!

Olivia and I started back with Tot School this week. I will say, we dabbled in it last year but didn't fully commit. This year, we are committed and loving it. I purchased Mrs. Plemon's Tot School Curriculum, and O.M.G. It is the best money I have ever spent. The organization, detailed explanations, and engaging activities are perfect. I really cannot say enough good things about it. 

The week's theme was Apples. I never knew there could be so many fun things to do with apples. And let me just add in a disclaimer...these activities I am about to show you are probably only about half of the things provided in the week of Apple Curriculum. There are so many great things to choose from in this set!


Olivia loves sensory bins, so we started the week doing this sensory bin. Obviously the assembly was super easy. I bought popcorn kernels at Target and a foil pan. Then the curriculum set included the activity. 




We buried the letters in the popcorn, then she found them and placed them on the correct cards to spell the words. I will say, I had my doubts she would be able to do this...and clearly I was wrong. lol. She was so proud of herself!


I did not have to purchase many things to make this week a success but I did purchase the Attribute Apples from Amazon. WORTH EVERY CENT! 


I had these baskets already around the house, so I dumped out the contents and added these color signs (that came with the curriculum.) Olivia immediatly started sorting out the colors. We also did them by size and she learned to say "small apple" and "BIIIIIIIIIG apple." lol (raises her eyebrows and all.)




 Next, we read the book Ten Apples Up On Top by Dr. Seuss. Then we did this adorable activity. She counted and stacked the apples on top of the little dude's head. 




SNACK TIME! We did other snacks during the week (the curriculum provides all of the ideas and list of ingredients for the snacks) but I didn't take pictures of all of them! This one was her favorite though! Dried apples and Cinnamon Chex Mix!


 Bobbing for apples was also one of her favorite activities. Using the Attribute Apples, I filled up a bucket of water and gave her a slotted spoon. She scooped, grabbed, tossed, and just played. It was great for her motor skills. 


I would even tell her things like "find a small apple" and she would find one and put it in a separate bowl. 




Next, we painted using some apples. Just cut an apple in half and dip it in the paint. Using these apples as paint stamps was a big hit!







Our next sensory bin (a couple of days later) was Apple Pie Scented Cloud Dough! So easy to make and so much fun! 


I don't want to give away all of the secrets and treasures from Mrs. Plemon's Tot School Curriculum so I will keep these ingredients to this to myself, but it was something I will definitely be doing again! With this, Olivia was able to make pretend apple pies and she loved it. Rex even came home and played with it! Such a fun activity! (ignore the sippy cups in the sink...my camera skills are not always on point.) :)


 And, sometimes it is good to not be messy and just work on some good ol' fine motor skills. :)




The Apple Paper Craft was easy, fun, and not messy. However, don't underestimate the importance of children learning from an early age how to tear, glue and cut. All things we will be working on this year!




These cards were also perfect for fine motor and sensory! Olivia just rolled up Play-Dough, and counted as she placed the Play-Dough on the trees!


I wish I had taken more pictures of this activity. We did this with Rex too and he loved it. I hid the apples around the house for the kids. They took off to find them and every time they found one, they colored an apple on their page. It was a blast!

And to wrap up our apple week (we really didn't get to everything but I plan on going back and doing the other activities another week) we did an Apple Dot Art Sheet. Olivia loves Dot Art and is really good at it! I purchased my Dot Dabbers from Amazon and they have lasted an entire year now. I am surprised because we use them OFTEN! 




It is exciting to me to see how much she is learning and how much she is progressing. I decided when I stayed home with her for the couple of years, I wanted very much to be in charge of her education. Of course we watch cartoons and play with dolls. All of these activities took about an hour each morning Monday-Friday. It made our morning more fun, she was engaged in learning, and I felt accomplished and proud of her! (Well I am always proud of her, but...you know!)

And if I am being 100% honest, primary grades are my jam. I know nothing about educating a toddler...which is why I turned to this curriculum. 

Next week we do Chicka Chicka Boom Boom and I couldn't be more excited about it! 

To purchase her entire year of curriculum, click HERE.

To purchase the apple curriculum, click HERE

Thank you Jessica, for a great curriculum! We love it so much!

(affiliate links are included for your convenience)

Hillary

















Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Ocean Engagement! 

We are headed to the beach in a few weeks and I really wanted to work with Livi on some ocean themed things! I knew she would like them, but I actually couldn't believe how much she LOVED them! 


We started with Sand Molds! Texture is a huge obstacle for little ones, but she adapted to this really well! This sand was from the Target Dollar Spot ($3.) It feels similar to Mad Mattr Sand or Kinetic Sand! I highly recommend it! The clean up is so easy and it doesn't dry out! 


Our two focus texts for the week were Where is Baby's Beach Ball and Seaside. Both books are super cute and engaging for little ones! 

After our books, we did some Dot Painting! Sometimes when we don't have much time to get completely messy, so we just do Dot Paint instead of regular painting! 



Next we moved to doing our sensory bin! It had been a few weeks since I had done the water beads, so you better believe I busted those out again! :) 


We talked about the types of ocean animals, pretended they were swimming, hid them, and just explored with these! 

And then this happened during by brief restroom break. :) I love this kid and her creativity! 

Now, we did a really fun Jelly Fish activity but I couldn't get a great picture of it, so I'm going to share think for the place I found the idea! 

Our Pet Jelly Fish was so much fun! 


Olivia played with this for so long! She loved it! 


My picture is NOT Pinterest worthy, but it really looked great while moving! The link above includes the EASY instructions! :)

Next we made a fun crab! Just a paper plate stapled in half, painted, then I put metallic paper strips on it for legs! 

Livi loves painting, so we also did a Jelly Fish like this! 


I love watching her carry these around all day and show daddy when he gets home! 

Next we did some more ocean exploration! 


I froze some of the smaller ocean animals with some blue food coloring, then we put them in a bowl of water! The kids loved this! It was fun watching them melt, watching the water change color, and playing with the animals! 


Lastly, we wrapped up our ocean week with this Melissa and Doug Puzzle! Livi loves it but gets so frustrated with the starfish! Lol. 

We have been so busy but we are finally out for summer! I'm happy have both of my kids with me and be prepared to see some fun blog posts coming your way soon! 

(Affiliate links are included for your convenience) 

Have a fabulous week!

Hillary