Sunday, March 21, 2010

Tot School: Mail

Tot SchoolAre we destined to always be behind in our Tot School posts? Mommy was wondering if she should just schedule this post to publish in time for Valentine's Day NEXT year...

Anyway, this is our tot school from the 2nd week of February. So once again, you'll find lots of Valentine's stuff. Our color was pink and our shape was heart. Our theme book was Seven Little Postmen by Margaret Wise Brown.  No animals in it - what is Mommy thinking?!  But we did do lots of fun activities...

Other books we read (including Valentine's books):
  • Dear Annie by Judith Caseley.  A nice book about letters from Grandpa.
  • Special Delivery by Valjean McLenighan.  Mommy says this Sesame Street Muppets book might not be a classic, but I had lots of fun with it!
  • Valentine's Day Is… by Gail Gibbons.  I always like the nonfiction picture books by this author - there are lots of cool pictures in them!  A nice overview of the holiday.
  • Valentine's Day by Anne F. Rockwell.  It's all about friendships and making Valentine's cards...
  • The Valentine Bears by Eve Bunting.  Finally - a book about animals (bears)!  And they can really talk!
  • In My Heart by Molly Bang.  About how I am always in my Mommy's (or Daddy's) heart.  Mommy's note:  Especially good for work-away-from-home parents...
  • Love Your Heart by Tim McGraw & Tom Douglas.  Pretty dresses and crowns - definitely my kind of book!  A sweet book about a relationship with dad and the talent of being kind.
  • Close to You: How Animals Bond by Kimiko Kajikawa.  A sweet and simple book about animal relationships.
  • A Valentine for Fuzzboom by True Kelley.  This was a silly kind of book!
We used the Itty-Bitty Bookworm Bo curriculum, and here are some of the things we did...

First, Mommy told me to write a letter.  So I did.  I wrote lots of letters!

She told me there were other kinds of letters, too.  The kind you write TO somebody, and then mail to them.  So I wrote THAT kind of a letter.

After I wrote the letter, we folded it and put it in the envelope.  Then we sealed the back with candle wax!

I licked a stamp to put on the envelope!

Mommy showed me where things go on the envelope.  The From address, the To address, and the stamp.

We stuck the envelope in my Valentine's mailbox.  Then I pretended I was a little postman and I canceled out the stamp with a rubber stamp, kind of like they do at the post office.

We spent some more time reviewing how to address an envelope.

Mommy had me do a number matching activity.  I had to count how many lines were on each envelope, and match it to the mailbox with that number.  There was even velcro to attach the envelope to the mailbox.  I HATED THIS ACTIVITY!

It was more fun pretending to be a postman and weighing mail on Mommy's food scale.

And of course, making edible envelopes from graham crackers, cream cheese, and icing.  Yummy!

I designed my own postage stamp.

And I glued together a postage truck using the shapes Mommy cut out.

We took a field trip to our local post office.  We do that a lot...

We talked about how people mail Valentine's cards to each other.  I played a matching game with Valentine cards.

We kept the Valentine cards in my mailbox.  Mommy showed me how you use the flag to show that mail is there to be picked up.

Mommy showed me how to match up things by rhyming.  Like "moon" and "spoon" get matched up.  She had colored some of the hearts to help me with matching, but I really didn't need that!  I did my OWN coloring when I'd matched them up.

I practiced on my African drums!  I love singing "Humpty Dumpty" to a drum beat!  Did you know that's how people used to "mail" messages to each other?

We made some Valentine cards and stuff with stickers.

Our numbers this month were 13 and 14.  Mommy found some conversation heart remnant fleece fabric - just enough to cut out 14 hearts to use on my felt board.

We looked at actual heart pictures - they don't look quite the same as the heart shape, huh?!  Mommy gave me some conversation hearts to glue to the heart picture.  Notice there are only four conversation hearts glued down, and the bowl is empty.  Wonder what happened to the other conversation hearts?

On the topic of conversation hearts, we did a graphing activity.  I had to sort out the hearts by color and then count out how many of each color there were as Mommy crossed off squares on the graph.  Then I could tell her that we had more PINK hearts than any other color, etc.  That was BEFORE I ate them.

Of course, we had to make heart-shaped sugar cookies.  Here's a trick - if you want to put sprinkles on without using frosting, spread honey on the cookie!

And here's my heart-shaped meal, though the english muffin with cherry topping seems to have lost its shape before the picture got taken.

What week wouldn't be complete without stickers stuck in inappropriate places?  No - I was just creating a valentine step ladder for Mommy!

I still do some worksheets, but Mommy is never sure which ones I'll want to do.  So sometimes she just lays a bunch out for me.  Like this - one where I match and glue letters, one with cutting practice, one connect-the-dots, one do-a-dot, and one where I put a marker on all the "O"s.  Then I pick and choose which I want to do.  I'm really not into tracing at the moment.

Though I've discovered pricking!  Here I'm using a pencil to prick holes through paper along my name.  I've also used a big tack, though I don't always have one available to me...  The carpet works great for this!

We created a Valentine blizzard!  We had one of those dollar packs of Valentine's foam stickers, and we threw them up in the air (over a big towel, of course) for an indoor blizzard.

I did some animal relationship matching.  Very easy and fun!

And I did some Valentine eraser matching, too!  (You can play Memory by hiding these under yogurt cups.)  And I did lots of erasing - I checked out every one of those erasers to make sure they worked.

We went to a sporting exhibition at the fairgrounds.  There was a really cool aquarium with BIG salmon.

And a real live Alaskan grizzly bear that could really WALK!  On his back legs!  Did you know they only hibernate when they don't have access to food in the winter?

Just getting up close and personal...

Of course, I played on Mommy's iPod Touch a lot, too.

After all that fun, I am highly tuckered out.  NOT!  That was all staged... :)

Some other cool links:
 And a very cool video clip to go with the week:


The Activity Mom said...

wow! what a great week full of fun! love your conversation heart felt pieces!

Ticia said...

Another great book to go with this theme, actually several:
Dear Mr Blueberry
Jolly Postman
Dear Goldilocks

Such a super fun week! I love the picture of Esme asleep.

Lisa said...

Love this theme!!

sbswtp said...

great activities!

Crunchy and Green said...

The post office theme was adorable, and such a cute way to tie it into Valentine's Day! I love her staged sleeping photo, too cute!

Theresa said...

Love your Valentine & mail activities for the week, and your field trip to the post office! :)

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