Thursday, March 22, 2012

Tot School--St. Patty's Day Theme

Natalie is 19 1/2 months old

We've had a lot going on around here the last few weeks, so I don't have many pictures to share for this theme.  Natalie wasn't very into the St. Patty's Day activities which didn't make it any easier to do the activities in middle of all the craziness going on here.  Looking back, I should have figured this theme wouldn't necessarily appeal to a toddler.  There were no animals to look at. :)  I'll definitely be saving it for next year.  She might be more interested in it by then.  Nevertheless, we pushed on and did most of the activities on my agenda.

Here is a link to my St. Patrick's Day plans.

And here are pictures of Natalie playing her "games" as she calls them...

She has always enjoyed matching things from when she was about 10  months old, so these shadow match games will continue to be a part of my plans for as long as she likes them.  She has an uncanny knack for matching things; it's crazy.  Her attention span this particular day was a little under par, however.  It started nicely with her matching a few pictures to their shadows.

I don't have any velcro strips, so I've been using masking tape on the back of the pictures so they stick to the shadows.  Otherwise it's a big mess because the pictures slide everywhere and distract her.  Well, apparently Natalie thinks the tape hurts the pictures because she has taken to removing the tape from them.  She then proceeds to give them each a hug while saying, "Awww."  It's cute...guess we're working on showing compassion too with this activity? LOL

So by this point I'm assuming the matching is done for now and instead just name the pictures she picks up.  After awhile she's taken the tape off all of them and decides the easel is a good place to put the tape and pictures.  My type-A personality was pushed to its limits because this wasn't on the plan. LOL  I figured she was having fun and experimenting with objects, and convinced myself it was ok. :)
At some point a Christmas hat came out and I realized my plans were done for the moment.  Natalie was running the show.   

This pom pom activity wasn't part of my lesson plans, but she was asking for them, so I got them out and decided to see what she'd do with them.  At first she just put them on the plates, then I showed her how to separate them by color and she did that for awhile.  
For whatever reason, after a bit she started moving them over to her kitchen set.  In the end she helped me put them back in the bag to put away.

On another day I drew a few different sized squares on a piece of paper for her to color.  This girl loves to color (as I'm sure most kids do)!  And I think it's an innate ability to adjust the grip on the marker/crayon/pencil because I never corrected her grip, she just changed it on her own.  She even moves the marker/crayon down so her fingers are near the end of it.

Still working on staying in the lines. :)  She's looking a little tired here.

After her nap she worked on fine motor skills by picking up pom-poms with tongs.  This is something she had't been able to do...until that day.  I showed her how to do it, then put her hands on the tongs and showed her how to squeeze them to pick up the pom-pom.  

A few tries later and this is what she did...

I was so excited and proud!  Apparently she was too because she decided to show her hippo and bring her into the fun.  She tried feeding the pom-poms to the hippo, then went back to picking them up with the tongs.

All was going great until she was too curious about the tongs and wound up pulling them apart.  :(  Guess I'll either be repairing them or getting new ones because she really likes this activity.

Another new thing we tried for this theme was using chalk on her chalk board.  I don't know why I hadn't done this sooner.  Okay, I do know why.  I figured she'd eat it.  But she didn't AND it's so much easier to get chalk off her hands and clothes than it is marker.  She's obsessed with flowers (or "flous" as Natalie calls them) right now and kept asking me to draw more "flous" for her to color.  

We started the scrap-paper rainbow, but I have to admit I did most of the work.  Her attention span just wasn't having it.  She was too engrossed with the adhesive being sticky and tearing the paper that she couldn't focus on putting the paper on the rainbow drawing.  We didn't finish this project, but I really think it's a neat one so I'll be saving it til next year or for another theme involving rainbows.  Would be good for a color unit too, I think.

 These pictures were probably taken the first 3 or 4 days of the theme.  We didn't work on it much the second week, but she knows what a rainbow is now, and will say "rainbow" when she sees one.  She's also recognizing squares more now, so I guess what we DID do was beneficial.  Just goes to show ya, even if you don't think you have the time for any of these activities, just doing a few will help your little one learn.

So who else has done these activities?  How'd your little one do?  Let me know in the comments! :)


1 comment:

  1. We did some of these activities but the boys mostly enjoyed the shamrock hunt & pointing out the St. Patties Day pictures! I will say Nat has a great attention impressed!!! She is so bright! I have a hard time being able to sit down with both the boys for some of the activities but when Phil is home it makes it much easier having the one to one ratio. It is amazing all the things they are learning and picking up on though! :)