art

One Last Candy Activity!

Today I’m going to start by linking you to FOUR direct drawings! Yep… 4! They are all different drawings of candy. As you can tell, I really like Arts for Kids Hub for direct drawings!

Today’s story: Harriet’s Halloween Candy by Nancy Calton

Today’s project… provide your child white, yellow and orange paper. Show your child the shape of candy corn. Encourage your child to draw and cut out a candy corn shape. Now tear or cut the white, yellow and orange paper to cover and create your own paper candy corn. (These pictures are from when my own sons were 3 and 4)

I hope everyone has a fun and safe Halloween… I will see you again on Monday when we start a new month and new theme… Animals get ready for winter!

STEAM · story · topic

Beans to Chocolate!

For thinking Thursday today, we will learn about how chocolate is made! Beans to Chocolate by Lisa M. Herrington shows the process of taking cacao beans and transforming them into the chocolate we love. Where Does Chocolate Come From? From SciShow Kids Jessi and Squeeks talk about the process of transformation. Take a trip to a chocolate factory with KidVision.

Have your child draw and/or write out the steps they remember in the processes. This is about looking at things step by step. If they miss a major detail, ask questions.

letter work · phonemic awareness · word work

Twizzlers Letters

Today we will listen to the story Twizzlers Shapes and Patterns by Jerry Pallotta. This story talks about a lot of math terms and describes shapes and other geometrical terms as well as making patterns.

Today we aren’t going to make shapes or patterns as it is Words Wednesday, but you are certainly welcome to try out some of this Twizzlers fun.

But, we will use Twizzlers for our learning today. If you don’t have Twizzlers, you can use chenille stems, yarn, wiki sticks or other long thin manipulatives.

Today use your Twizzlers to make letters and or words. Here are a few suggestions!

  • Say a letter name and have your child make the letter
  • Say a word and have your child make the beginning or ending sound
  • Make word family cards and have your child add the beginning sounds with the Twizzlers
  • Have your child make a letter with Twizzlers and then go on a beginning sounds hunt. You can search for objects around the house, in magazines or just draw pictures

Just notice, I had to hold the candy in shape while taking the picture. Twizzlers do not like to stay in a curved shape, but it is doable!

math · topic

Topic Tuesday More Candy… and sorting

Let’s start by watching this segment from Unwrapped on How M&M’s are made. I always like sharing this type of information with children as they often have no concept of how the items are created. This episode give a bit of the backstory as well as a tour of the facility where the candy is produced!

Now lets read another M&M book… yes, another fun math book using M&Ms! This one is called More M&M Math by Barbara Barbieri McGrath. In this book you will sort and then graph candy… so guess what we are going to do today!?! Sort and graph!

You can check out a post I shared in April for how to sort and graph M&M candy.

Instead, I sorted the collection of odd Lego pieces I have in my kitchen. Don’t you have an odd Lego collection somewhere? No? Well sort any odd collection you have. Maybe you can then convince your child to put them away when they are done sorting?

Help your child create a graph grid to fill in with the materials you are choosing to graph. I was lazy and didn’t get out a ruler, but doing it with straight lines helps a bit. Now sort! Talk about what you see. Which is the least? Which is the most? Are any the same? How many more gray than red? How many fewer gold than clear?

math · story

M&M math

This week is all about math… AND CANDY!

Today we are going to listen to two M & M math books. The first book’s math skills are a lot simpler than the second book.

The M&Ms Counting Book by Barbara Barieri McGrath… this book uses a bag of M&Ms to count, pattern and makes shapes

The M&Ms Addition Book by Barbara Barieri McGrath… this book uses a bag of M&Ms to practice addition.

Ok… so let’s do some math with M&Ms (or Skittles, or Lego blocks, or… whatever colored items you have on hand!)

Today we will work on patterns. A pattern is something that repeats itself. When we start patterns we begin with simple AB patterns 1 green, 1 brown, 1 green, 1 brown. Then move on from there. ABB 1 orange, 2 blue, 1 orange, 2 blue or AAB 2 blue, 1 orange, 2 blue, 1 orange. We then typically add in a third color 1 red, 1 green, 1 blue, 1 red, 1 green 1 blue etc.

First have your child recognize the pattern. Talk about the pattern put words to what you see. Next have them copy the pattern, make it with their own set of materials. Then they can extend your pattern… can you add on to my pattern? What comes next? Finally have the child make their own version of that pattern. Can you make an AB pattern with your own color, material, whatever change in variable.

Notice that I showed the pattern broken into chunks. This helps your child see the repeat of the pattern. Once children get good at creating their own and understanding the concept of patterns, they can make more and more complex patterns.

art · story

If you’re a Monster…

Today let’s listen to the story/song: If You’re a Monster and You Know It by Rebecca and Ed Emberley. This is to the tune of If You’re Happy and You Know it, but with a twist.

The illustrations in this story are very bold and on black. This is a great opportunity to create some paper art. In school, I keep a crate of construction paper scraps and we use them all the time for these projects. At home, just keep the larger scraps from art projects in a bin or bag and put them out whenever you want your child to cut up paper to do an art project… reduce, reuse, recycle.

Encourage your child to add the elements in the story on their monster so they can then retell the story with their monster!

teachers pay teacher

Monster Letters

I just uploaded a new kit to my Teachers Pay Teachers store! Letter Monsters! This kit includes capital and lowercase letters AND a picture card to match the letter sound. Many of the images are Halloween based. Perfect for this week’s monster fun as well as next week for Halloween.

And… as an added bonus, today is the last day in my sale. Everything in my store is still 10% off today… yes including this new kit, which retails for $2.50.

Click on any of the images to be taken to this new product!

family activity · STEAM · story

Monster Trap!

Today listen to the stories “How to Catch a Monster” by Michael Yu and “How to Catch a Monster” by Adam Wallace. While both these stories have the same title they are actually very different. In the first book, the child is excited to play with his monster as he gets ready for bed. In the second, the child wants to overcome his fear of monsters. But I decided that thinking Thursday is a great day to design a monster trap!

This becomes a great STEAM project! You can use anything, yes anything in your house to build a monster trap. So… let your kiddo get creative. I would encourage him/her devise a plan. Let’s draw out what you think a monster trap should look like. What resources will you need? How will you lure the monster into the trap? Where will you set it up.

Now get working… let your child be creative and provide limited support in this adventure. Your roll is to be the scribe (lots of writing for this one), ask questions!, and encourage creativity. How does the monster…? What happens next? Why will that happen? How do you… ? How else can you…?

This is a great project to work on over a few days or at least a few chunks of time. In school we would probably devise the plan on one day and make the traps another. For younger children (3/4) I would have him/her make the trap and then draw the plan. For older children (kindergarten and up) I would have them make the plan and then make the trap. You are flipping the purpose of the plan in this case.

But remember, the main purpose it to have fun!

art · phonemic awareness · story

Monsters Puppets Love Words

Go Away Big Green Monster by Ed Emberley. This story will quickly become a favorite. I would encourage you to listen to it once and then the second time have your child create big green monster while listening to the story. It is a great story for retelling!

Today lets make monster puppets. For my sample I used both markers and construction paper. I love encouraging children to use mixed media. You could also add other items such as yarn, buttons, googly eyes etc… the key is creativity!

For Words Wednesday we are going to work on blending onset and rime. Onset is the first sound you hear in a word and the rime is the rest of the word.

One way to help your child see the pattern is to either work with word family words or words groups (animals, names, foods or other familiar groups of words)

Here is a simple chant to use with your child(ren)

  • It starts with a /__/,
  • And it ends with /___/
  • Put it together,
  • and you say __________. (your child needs to say the word)

It starts with a /c/ and ends with /at/. Put it together and you say “cat”

It starts with a /h/ and ends with /orse/. Put it together and you say “horse”

If your child is struggling still, I would provide visual clues. Provide a group of pictures or toys or other items and use words represented there, this helps the visual learner make the auditory connections.

It stars with a /c/ and it ends with /ar/. Put it together and you say “car”.

It starts with a /d/ and it ends with /oll/. Put it together and you say “doll”.

When your child gets good at this, switch the rolls. Have your child say the first part of the rhyme and you finish it with the answer.

art · topic · writing

Monster’s Underpants!

When we are nervous about life we are told to picture others in their underpants… maybe this helps children too if they think about monsters in underpants? Children love monsters… and they think underpants are too funny. So put monsters in their underpants and there is nothing that will bring more smiles, giggles and funny images!

Today listen to the story Monsters Love Underpants by Claire Freedman & Ben Cort.

Time to draw, paint… create a monster of your own!

My monster is wearing plaid underwear

Not sure how to get started or can’t think of a monster on your own? check out Art for Kit Hub’s paint a monster as inspiration… But, make sure to add underpants to your monster!

This is a great opportunity to encourage your child to write!! I guarantee your child has a story in his/her head about this underwear loving monster. You can provide words like monster, underpants, but encourage him/her to sound out the words the best they can. The purpose of children writing is not for them to spell every word correctly … it is for them to see him/herself as a writer. To put down their thoughts on paper. To see the connection between sounding out words to read and write. So encourage your child to write. Have them read what they wrote and praise the attempt, not criticize the imperfection.