Thursday, November 22, 2012

Hi-Ho Cherryo! Sorting

Hi-Ho Cherryo! is a favourite in our house, even M (at 18 months) joins in. I set up a simple sorting activity using the fruit and buckets. R had to sort the fruit by colour, using tongs to move them into the buckets.

He loved this, and repeated it several times. 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Puzzle Extension

R loves puzzles. When they are on offer, without a doubt, he will choose puzzles. I like to try and find different ways to extend puzzles so he does not lose interest. On this day, he put together the alphabet puzzle for the third time, when I got out the letters for our Fridge Phonics set. He immediately started matching the letters to the puzzle. He did this so fast, even saying most of the letter sounds.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Second Grade Common Core

Check out the next edition of the Common Core Workbooks. This one is the Second Grade Common Core Workbook. I have been lucky enough to get the First Grade and the Kindergarten books and they are great resources.

This book is 575 pages of ELA and Math activities, posters and worksheets all designed to meet the common core. Check it out and download the preview pages.

I highly recommend these books!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Number Block Towers

R is counting everything at the moment. Every opportunity he gets, he counts. He is getting to really know the numbers to 10 and exploring teen  numbers. I made him a simple block counting sheet. He had to identify the number and then build a tower with the right amount of blocks.

This was a simple way to incorporate some number skills into something that R loves. 

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Fall Fun

I have blogged about Musings Of Me's great units before. Well, she has done it again!! Check this out. It looks fantastic.It has over 180 pages of differentiated maths and literacy activities including emergent readers. R is just beginning to read, so he loves emergent readers, especially ones that he can colour orange (his favourite colour...and he colours entire pictures orange!) :) The unit is available here.

The only problem is that we are just entering Spring here, so I will have to hold onto it for 6 months! :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

First Grade Common Core

You might remember that I posted about the Kindergarten Common Core Workbook a couple of weeks ago. Well, this book did not disappoint. It contained so many great and usable activities, posters and ideas. I have already used the rhyming words activities, with great success. It will be a resource that I will use many times over. I was excited to see this...

The same author has created a similar resource, but geared towards Grade One. The sample pages, available here, show what an invaluable resource this will be. Again, each activity is linked to the First Grade Common Core. It includes both Math and English activities. For just $39.99, you can get 550 pages of fun and learning which are great for students, and reduces teacher workload.

If you are a blogger, and would like to see how you can get this fabulous resource for free, click here.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


We have just finished a mini unit on apples. R is 3½ and M is 18 months.

Firstly, I printed some 3 part cards from abcteach, but I do not think they are available anymore, as I was unable to locate them. We used these to complete the apple labelling sheet from 2 Teaching Mommies.

We also used the apple observation sheet from 2 Teaching Mommies. I had a selection of apples to choose from. R chose one apple and we completed the sheet. M just joined in with the eating of the apples. :)

R chose another apple to draw. He placed it on his table and used it for inspiration whilst drawing. The apple card was also on his table, and he decided to write the word 'apple' on his picture. This is the first time he has purposefully written a word. We have had lots of letters come out in his drawings, but they have all been random. So this was exciting for me. I have had it stuck to the fridge ever since and have been proudly showing all the visitors that come to our house!!

We made apple trees from paper plates, toilet rolls and stickers. This was something the M could join in with, and boy, does he love to paint.

Both of the boys are into signing and nursery rhymes at the moment, so we sung "5 Red Apples" several times. I don't know where this came from. I made it a few years ago, and was unable to find it.

I made a little 1-5 counting book for R. He glued apple seeds onto each page to match the numeral on each page. He quite enjoyed this activity, next time I will make the book to go to 10, as he knows the numbers 1-5 well.

I printed the Roll and Colour Apple Tree from Kindergarten Hoppenings. This is a fantastic blog with loads of functional of my favourites! R is really getting into colouring in these days. He quite often asks for a picture to colour.

R is just beginning to understand patterning so, I made a couple of activities for his to practice this. These are from Confessions of a Homeschooler and Engaging Toddler Activities.

Also from Confessions of a Homeschooler, R did the shape matching and they both did the magnet page with pom poms. R also did the 6 piece puzzle.

R did apple size sequencing from Childcareland. Riley really gets this now, and was able to do this experience independently.

From 1+1+1=1, R did the Aa letter find with dot markers, whilst M did a dot painting. M absolutely loves the dot markers, and uses them almost everyday. Lucky they last forever!!!

We have started doing a few activities from the Ready2Read bundle by The Moffatt Girls. I love this idea and we are slowly working through the first few units. Here R coloured the -at and -an word families on the apple tree. 

Lastly, I made the boys an apple book that they completed with the dot markers. M had only 3 colours, whilst R's book contained a few facts about apples to make it a bit longer. They both loved having their own little books. 

This unit took almost 2 weeks to complete. We did a few other things too, but these were all the photos that I took. You can see my previous apples post here

I have just seen a wonderful apple pack from Musings Of Me. Here is the link to purchase the unit. I wish that I had seen this prior to our apple unit, I might just have to extend it another week to squeeze in some of these activities. There is a free apple book which we will do this afternoon. It uses dot I am sure it will be a hit in this house!!!  You can check out some of Michelle's other cute creations here, you will not be disappointed.

Thanks for reading

Friday, September 14, 2012

Kindergarten Common Core

Wow! I just downloaded the free preview of this workbook for teachers implementing the Kindergarten Common Core in their classrooms. Check it out here. I love the number cards included in the preview...they contain the number words (one-ten), numerals, tally marks and a card with the corresponding number of buses on them. Awesome!

If the preview is anything to go by, this high-quality 600+ page document containing Math and English strategies and ideas for implementing the Kindergarten Common Core will be amazing. It is a comprehensive and practical guide to implementing each of the Math and English Standards, a must for all K teachers! All Kindergarten Common Core Standards are covered, and it contains activities, centers and worksheets.

The whole download (usually $39.99) is free (for bloggers) for a few more days...check out the details here.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Check out this super giveaway...

First Grade Owls has teamed up with Mrs Wills Kindergarten to host a super giveaway. Check it out here...

First Grade O.W.L.s

These are both great blogs...stop by and check them out!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Pom Pom Transfer

If you are familiar with my blog, you will know that R loves pom poms. He lost interest in them for a while, so I did not get them out so much. Recently, I have been getting them out for M (who also loves them). This has sparked R's interest again. Here he is doing a transfer activity. He uses the tweezers to move the pom poms from the bowl to the tray. We also talked about shades of green, comparing the pom poms, bowl and tweezers.

I really like these tweezers. I recently picked them up whilst shopping for birthday presents, from a local toy shop, and they were only $1.99. They are easy for R to use and manipulate.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Ping Pong Scoop and Post

Over the past few weeks, I have been slowly setting out activities for M to participate in. He recently turned 1, and has been wanting to joining in our learning activities. R and I usually complete most of our learning adventure while M takes his daytime naps, however, M is slowly changing to one nap per day. So, I have found it much easier to get them both busy in order for us to get anything done.

One of the first activities that I set out for R and M was a scooping activity. R scooped the ping pong balls with the big orange spoon into the tissue box. M used his hands, and did try the spoon after seeing R do this. I left this activity out on our toy shelves for the week (I usually swap out their toys on Sunday) and it was used a lot. I had to replace the tissue box several times.

Sadly, the orange spoon did not survive the week, it got stepped on and snapped where the handle becomes the spoon.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Birthday Fun

R turned 3 a few weeks ago, and I planned a day of fun, with a lot of learning thrown in! We had a great day together and the addition of M&M's made R's day. :)

From Homeschool Creations, I laminated the tracing sheet. R loves doing these sheets, and we have not done it for a while, so he was happy to do it.

We also ordered the balloons by size, from the same pack.

I used some birthday pictures found on Google to make a cutting sheet for R. He has been into cutting lately, and can now cut independently. 

I printed a couple of M&M's sorting mats from Making Learning Fun. R loved this activity. He wanted to do it several times, and asked for it over the next few days!!

I let R ice and decorate a cupcake. He was looking forward to this, he helped me make the cupcakes. I let him loose with some 100's and 1000's, M&M's and some cachous. This is what he created:

Lastly, we did a Roll and Graph activity from 2 Teaching Mommies. R like doing these, and usually we only go to 5, but this day, he wanted to keep going. R used Christmas pom poms with tinsel through them as the markers. We recently got the photo cubes, and we both love them. They make this type of activity much easier for me to prepare. R loves throwing these dice and running after them to see what he rolled. It is also a great way for us to involve M (aged 1) in our learning activities. He rolls the dice and R adds the counter to the graphing sheet.

R also filled in the Cupcake Observation sheet as he ate the cupcake he decorated. I really like the this idea, and R did to. We discussed each section, and R decided and marked the sheet.

All in all, we had a fun day with lots of learning!

Thanks for reading.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Roll and Dot

I am on study break at the moment, so I have had a bit of time to search around the internet for some new ideas. One of the things I saw on Tons of Fun was a dice game using Do-a-Dot markers. It did not take long for me to set this one up.

We used a number die and a colour die. R rolled the dice and selected the correct dot marker, making the corresponding number of dots on his paper. For example, in the following photo, R rolled yellow on the colour die and 5 on the number die, so he would make 5 dots with the yellow marker.

R really liked this game. We played it again, with each of us taking turns to roll and dot. This activity took very little time to set up and was a good way to reinforce numbers 1-6. 

Thanks for reading. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Number Match

I have noticed that I set up a lot of language and alphabet activities for R, and not as many maths activities, so I have been trying to set up more maths and number based activities. This activity is similar to the Alphabet Stick and Match activity that R and I completed a while back.

I wrote the numbers 1-9 on a small whiteboard. Next to the whiteboard, I placed a bowl with magnetic numbers 1-9 in it. 

R matched the magnetic numbers to the numbers on the whiteboard. I named the numbers as R matched them. After he was done, he took the numbers off the board and put them back in the bowl. I got him to trace over the numbers on the whiteboard. This removed the numbers. R was delighted with this and continued until all the numbers were 'wiped' off.

This was a simple activity to set up and R enjoyed it.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Elmer Birthday Cake and Crafts

R has really taken a liking to the 'Elmer' series of books since we borrowed "Elmer and the Rainbow" from the library a few months ago. I asked at the library if they had any others, and the kind librarian put some on 'request' for us, so we have had a steady stream of 'Elmer' books for a while now.

When R was choosing his birthday cake, he asked for Elmer. So I got my husband to sketch a picture of Elmer from the book cover. I made a round cake and used the drawing to cut out the pieces we did not need. I could not make gray icing, so I added plain icing to the cake and made a grid with an icing pen. Then it was a matter of 'simply' colouring in the squares with the different coloured icings. I say simply - because, once I found a method, it was quite simple to do. It was time consuming though, taking about two hours to ice the whole cake.

It turned out quite well, I was really proud of my efforts when it was finally finished.

We have also done a few craft activities:

This is a picture I found on Google and R painted it with Do-A-Dot markers (which R has fallen in love with in recent times)

Another Google picture find, collaged with small coloured squares.

We have done a couple of other things, but I cannot find the photo's. I will update if/when I locate them.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Colour Paddles

I was sorting through some old resources that I made when I first began working and I found these colour paddles.

They were really simply made. I drew the template onto cardboard and painted them in the primary colours. Once the paint was dry, I glued matching cellophane onto the back and they were done.

I had to get them out for R to explore. He absolutely loved them and spent about half an hour looking at things with them. I also showed him how to put one on top of the other to create a new colour.

It was a simple way to introduce colour mixing to R.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Colour Shades

R knows his colours, and most colour activity no longer appeal to him these days, so I was excited to find some more advanced colour activities for R. I found this activity at Love My Life x4.

At first R was reluctant to do this activity, but the second time I put it out he went for it and loved it.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Contact Collage

This is one of my favourite art activities for both of my boys (aged 1 and 3) to do. I cut up a square (or any other shape) of book covering contact and give them some flat items from the collage box. This time it was some stars and crepe paper. When he was finished sticking things on his collage, I gave him the glitter to shake onto his art work. R loves glitter!!!

When he is finished, I just stick it into his art scrapbook. This is a really easy open-ended craft with little preparation or mess.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Tonging Plastic Puff Balls

I recently picked up a few new items to renew interest in some activities that we have done many times before. Here is two of my finds being put to good use.

I got the flower ice cube tray for about 50c from Ikea. The little plastic puff balls were from Spotlight and were a bit more expensive, at $4 for 2 bags. R used the tongs to move the puff balls to the flower tray.

We have used the puff balls for sorting and M also enjoys playing with them. 

Friday, April 20, 2012

Cooking with a Sensory Tub

This photo was take a while ago, after R was finished playing with a sensory tub.

The sensory medium is a soup mix, containing yellow and green split peas and barley. His interest in the tub was coming to an end, so I added measuring cups and spoons, a muffin tray, a cookie tray, some items from out kitchen play toy box and his little kitchen. In the interest of reducing mess, I lay a blanket on the floor.

R loved this activity. He scooped and mixed the mix and cooked it in thew oven. He made me a cake (yum!). R easily spent an hour with this set-up. Surprisingly, he made very little mess!

This was a great way to allow a bit of creative and imaginary play combined with sensory play.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Colour Sorting in a Muffin Tray

I made this activity for R after seeing it on Childcareland.

It was super simple. I cut the circles out of foam to fit in the bottom of the muffin tray, then cut the rest of the foam sheets into little squares. R simply has to sort the foam squares into the correctly coloured muffin cup. Simple and fun!