Preschool Years at Home

Laughing, Loving, and Learning Together

Making a Splash!

on August 2, 2013

Hello, Friday! Hello, fun! Today should have been our monthly art class and museum day, but for a second month in a row, we did not get a reminder e-mail with sign-up link, and for a second month in a row, I didn’t think “first Friday of the month = art class” before all available spots were filled. Oops!

Thankfully, the girls do a great job of manufacturing their own fun. In keeping with our Friday tradition, I left school books on the shelf today and allowed them to choose activities for the morning. With a bedroom full of toys, a living room full of puzzles and games, and a house full of books, they chose … the laundry basket.

Basket cases!

Basket cases!

Apparently, the laundry basket makes the best spot in the house for a fairy to read to a ballerina. (They visited the dress-up bin before discovering the laundry basket.) It took a bit of arranging for them to both get comfortable, but they finally succeeded in getting themselves and a set of Edna Elephant: Brand New Readers tucked into their “ship,” where Little Bear read to an appreciative audience of one.

Of course, after Little Bear read aloud for a bit, both girls decided that *I* should read and ran to get their favorite books. Today’s stories included …

We certainly weren’t lacking in variety!

Just as I reached my limit of random kids’ books, Little Bear reminded me that we had not gotten to Life of Fred: Apples yesterday and begged to do four units — “two for yesterday and two for today” — this morning. Once again, she told me that Life of Fred was her “most favorite book out of all the books in the whole wide world” and that she just couldn’t “bear to go TWO days without doing any of it.” So she and I sat down to do math, while Baby Bear wandered off to play in the play kitchen.

I’m still not sure what I think of the whole Life of Fred approach to math. The stories are odd at best and seem to ramble all over the place. Again today, we reviewed basic addition, ordinal numbers, and time to the hour. We also practiced counting to 100 by 1’s, 5’s, and 10’s, and Little Bear spent a bit of time practicing numeral formation on the MagnaDoodle. I’m not at all sure that this could work as the complete elementary math program it’s touted to be, but there’s got to be some merit in any set of books that makes a kindergartner fall head-over-heels in love with math.

Dragon Tower

Dragon Tower

We wrapped up math with some Verbal Mind Benders, several sample riddles from a couple of Dr. Dooriddles Associative Reasoning Activities that I’m thinking of adding to our logic/critical thinking book collection, and a half dozen visual recall challenges from MindWare Brain Box: My First Brainbox. Then, I sent Little Bear to play with her sister while I fixed lunch. A few minutes later, she called me into her room to show of her newest Magnatile creation, a tower filled with dragons and treasure. She went on to inform me that she’d decided to be a builder as well as a math teacher like Fred and a Mommy when she grew up. I informed her that she was going to be one busy lady!

“Well, I’ll have vacation time,” she said. “That’s when I’ll go be a paleontologist and dig for dinosaur bones.”

"Skidamarink a dink a dink, Skidamarink a doo ..."

“Skidamarink a dink a dink, Skidamarink a doo …”

Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who found Little Bear’s aspirations exhausting. I walked back into the living room to find that Baby Bear had appropriated both my pillows and my recliner. She combined them to create a cozy nest for herself and was contentedly singing herself to sleep with “Skidamarink.”

After some unplanned rest time and a later-than-intended lunch, Baby Bear and I played a picture association game and matched baby animals with their mothers while Little Bear did some dot-to-dot puzzles and mazes. Then, one of the girls’ aunts and a cousin arrived for the chief fun of the day: Pool time!

There are a few positives to Texas’ triple-digit summers. In fact, the only one I can think of can best be expressed in terms of “The water’s fine! Come on in!”

Making a splash!

Making a splash!

Basking in the sunshine ...

Basking in the sunshine …

About the only thing these girls enjoy even more than the water is spending time with extended family. Combine the two, and they deem the day practically perfect … even if Mommy forgot to register them for their their much-loved monthly art class.

Active play in the hot sun, followed by more play and family fun indoors left us with two t-i-r-e-d girls. We took just enough time after dinner to play a quick game of POP for Blends and read a few more stories, then it was time to say good-bye to another week of fun and learning and call it a night.

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