Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Tot School

As a teacher and a mom, I am seeking new ways to incorporate learning into our day every day life. I want to teach my son about the world around him while building connections between us and creating lasting memories.

My son was born in July of 2015. He is very active and doesn't like to sit. I was working really hard to keep him entertained and engaged in play. So even though I have been in education for 6 years and I have been teaching, when I sat down to think about how to incorporate learning into our lives, I felt a little lost! I sought the advice of the holiest of all websites....the place where all good ideas come from... PINTEREST! While I found a lot of inspiration and amazing ideas, I haven't found one site the really spoke to me as a mom. Here is why.

Like I said, I want to incorporate learning into our every day lives. I want to learning to come naturally from play, talking, and reading. However religion as the basis of the education or part of our education isn't what is going to work for our life. No need to explain or debate. It just isn't. So I set my own goals for our new learning adventure which I am calling TOT SCHOOL.




Here are our tot school goals:

1. Enrich learning through literacy, play, art, music, cooking, and technology.
2.  Spend 5-30 minutes a day on our learning based activities.
3. Have themed learning weeks.
4. Use books as a foundation for our theme weeks.
5. Go out into the community and take field trips as much as possible to enrich our learning.
6. Be flexible

Here are the themes I have come up with. These themes are in no particular order. They also don't have a particular time frame.
Themes
Colors
Shapes
Textures
Food
Clothing
Feelings
Manners
Occupations
Hannukah


Science Themes
The 5 sense
Body Parts
Animals/Zoo
Weather
Space
Dinosaurs
Gardening
Exercise
Healthy Food
Camping


Seasonal Themes
Fall
Winter
Summer
Spring
Spring: Very Hungry Caterpillar
Halloween
Thanksgiving
Love/Valentine’s Day
Christmas

Join us in our learning process! I will be posting all about it here on the blog during this new phase of our lives. 

  

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Telling Time




Time is a pretty exciting math unit because the kids can immediately apply it to their own life and use it. So, I wanted to make it even more fun.

For this math game, I found that 3 students at a time worked best. 4 was a crowd. I couldn't let just 2 students play at a time because they were so excited about it!

To play, student 1 is the time keeper. The time keeper gets to set the time for the other players. I emphasized that the time keeper must know what they are are setting so they can check the other students. When the time keeper sets the hour and minute hand on the clock, they say "tick tock what time is on the clock?" This lets everyone know they are ready.

Students 2 and 3 are the time seekers. They write down the time on their white boards. The time keeper must check that the time seekers got the time correct. This way, everyone is practicing their time!

I also wrote the minutes on the table with dry erase markers for the first 2 weeks. They wipe right off with a lysol wipe.

In addition to our super awesome life sized clock we learned a time cheer! Students should just repeat after you. I got my inspiration from hearing army cadences. Lyrics are provided below!

Teacher: This is how you tell the time
Students: This is how you tell the time

Teacher: Have no fear you'll be fine
Students: Have no fear you'll be fine

Teacher: Step 1 short hand
Students: Step 2 long hand

Teacher: This is how you tell the time
Students: This is how you tell the time

Teacher: Have no fear you'll be fine
Students: Have no fear you'll be fine

Teacher: Short hand tells you the hour
Students: Short hand tells you the hour

Teacher: Small number has all the power
Students: Small number has all the power

Teacher: This is how you tell the time
Students: This is how you tell the time

Teacher: Have no fear you'll be fine
Students: Have no fear you'll be fine

Teacher: Long hand tells you the minutes
Students: Long hand tells you the minutes

Teacher: From 1 to 60 you did it!
Students from 1 to 60 you did it