Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Tt - Trees

Fall is the perfect time to learn about the letter Tt and Trees!

To begin our discussion, I divided everyone up into groups and gave them them each a sack with a bunch of different items in it. I also gave them two baskets - one with a picture of a tree in the bottom to represent things that grow on trees and another basket that repesents things that do not grow on trees. The groups then took turns pulling items out of the bags and determining which basket they belonged in. Some of the items included: an apple, a flower, grass, twig, leaf, pinecone, etc. This was a lot of fun for the groups to do!

One of the crafts that we worked on this week was a Popcorn Tree! The trunk and branches were made by tracing their forearms/hands and then cutting them out. They all did a great job resisting the temptation to eat the popcorn while gluing it onto their trees.  If I remember correctly, we did end up having popcorn for a snack that day. :)

One of the best parts of this week was that we had our first visit from Mr. Michael who is the children's librarian at the Pontiac Public Library. He read three books to each class and they all did a GREAT job using their listening ears! Mr. Michael will be visiting us on the third Monday/Tuesday of each month.

(This is not the best picture b/c I didn't have my camera on the correct mode - sorry!)

Of course we had to make some beautiful fall leaves to go along with our trees!  We tore up tissue paper into tiny pieces and then sprinkled them onto contact paper which was then covered with another piece of contact paper and cut out into the shape of a leaf. Cute!

Another craft that we attempted to make were Hairy Pinecones - pinecones rolled in water, then potting soil, and finally grass seed. The plan was to "water" our Hairy Pinecones every day but my cats decided it was a good idea to make toys out of them instead. So we never got to watch them grow hair. :(

Our Tt friend that we met was Thomas the tiger:

Thomas the tiger, tiger, tiger
Was a scaredy cat, cat, cat
He was so scared, scared, scared
That he dropped his hat, hat, hat

The kids all LOVE our silly friend songs each week! We meet our new friend on Wednesday's and I bet I'm asked 100 times on Monday's what his/her silly song is. I love the excitement!  :)

Our color this month is orange so we made some Orange Blossoms by cutting strips of orange fabric and gluing  it onto a circular blossom cut-out.

And our shape this month is diamond - we painted some large diamonds and turned them into kites! The kids each told where they thought their kite might fly to - the answers varied from "My house" to "The moon" to "My pigs" (says the daughter of a pig farmer, LOL).

Have you noticed a "tent" set up over our library area? Part of our tree lessons included going camping and using wood (which of course comes from trees) to make a pretend fire! We drove around the school room with our paper plate steering wheels, picked up some pieces of wood to make our fire and cooked up some "potatoes and hot dogs" wrapped in foil. While they cooked, we sang some campfire songs and listened to some of the forest animals - coyotes and owls. After we finished eating, we put out our fire and climbed into our tent to sleep for the night.  The kids had a lot of fun with this and a number of them camped some more during free play! :)

Here are a few picks of our rice table getting some play time. I added a small broom and dust pan to the area so that they could sweep up any mess that was made. I've learned that they just like to sweep the floor even if there is no mess!

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