Thursday, February 18, 2010

Preschool Week of 2/18

This week, it was almost impossible to get Crumpet to leave the Land of Pirates and join me in anything vaguely educational. Seriously, I could be standing in front of him, speaking, and I'm not sure he knew I was in the room... But we kept busy and had fun, and I think he even learned a few things!

Nature: We got snow! Crumpet had only seen snow once, and he didn't remember it. We rolled in it, threw it, and ate it! SO much fun!

Then, today, we went for a walk in the woods and saw BUDS on the trees. Crazy weather, but it looks like spring is on its way.

Math: We re-read Rabbit and Hare Divide an Apple from last week, and then we talked about liquid fractions. I brought out the measuring cups and showed Crumpet how to divide a cup of water in various equal portions.

Art: I was inspired by a book we were reading that wonders what a bird's flight would look like if you dipped its tail in paint. Then the artist drew lots of curlycues and zigzags, etc. We decided to try something similar and guessed what would happen if you dipped frogs, snakes, and dragonfly tails in paint. First we painted our guesses, and then we actually dipped toy animals in paint to see if we were close. It was a lot of fun!
The finished product (the book was prettier!):
Crumpet also made thank you cards because his grandmother and his great-grandparents sent Valentine's gifts:
Pirates: Since Crumpet was all about pirates this week, we got a couple of books at the library that described the lives of real pirates. One gave instructions for making flags, swords,etc. We tried a recipe for pirate biscuit, which they ate when they were out of fresh food. This was nasty! It was like eating a salt lick, and we decided we were glad we didn't have to eat like pirates! But the baking was fun. Crumpet loves to play with measuring cups in the flour, pouring it back and forth. This time, he made up a game pretending the cups were people, and they were trying to divide their flour equally! He's hearing me when we discuss fractions! It's a miracle! Then, when we kneaded the dough, he spent some time making holes for dungeons and castle towers out of it... It takes a long time to bake anything with Crumpet around, but it's certainly more interesting than when I do it alone!
He was a mess at the end. Imagine my poor kitchen... (Every picture face has to be a goofy one...)
Learning about Life through Literature: I have no idea what to call this section! We've given up on Before Five in a Row because it seems to be for younger kids. Maybe we'll try Five in a Row later when we start a more structured program in the summer. For now though, I found a lovely book and made a little unit study out of it. The book is Through Grandpa's Eyes by Patricia MacLachlan, and it is about a little boy's relationship with his grandfather, who is blind. The story doesn't make blindness out to be a disability, but rather shows the many ways to see the world without sight. Crumpet was fascinated, and he has spent a lot of time walking around with his eyes closed this week! We tried smelling food to find out was for lunch, and used our ears to guess what was happening in different parts of the house. One part of the book talks about setting up a food plate like a clock so a blind person knows where his food is - for example "The eggs are at 3 o'clock". I drew a clock and placed it under Crumpet's plate, and then we practiced (see below). We saw braille writing when we were in town, and we watched guide dogs online. Crumpet loved learning all of this, and I think it was a great way to introduce him to fact that everyone is different.

Have a great week!


  1. Such a great idea...dipping the animals in the paint!

    I'm going to have to search for the book on blindness...Kaelyn is very "aware" of differences in people and it would be good to show how it can be a good thing.

    I love the last picture of Crumpet eating with his eyes closed...cute!

  2. What an awesome week of practical learning! Crumpet is definitely a smart boy with big imagination. I admire your patience - it's hard for me not to rush Anna when she is in the mood of playing with whatever she is doing. This open ended art of paint drips sounds like a lot of fun too.

  3. Great idea to put the clock under the plate! :)

    Which level of Five in a Row were you using ~ the 'Before Five in a Row'?

  4. What great activities! Love the pictures of Crumpet in the kitchen!

  5. I left you an award at