Today let’s read the story Mrs. Wishy-Washy’s Farm by Joy Cowley. When the farm animals do not want another bath, they decide to leave the farm. They travel from the farm to the city. This is a great rhyming story.
Can you find the rhymes in the story? Practice listening for rhymes (you say two words and your child says if they rhyme or not). Creating rhymes (you say a word and your child says a word that rhymes). Do these with your child leading too… when your child is able to create their own rhyming pairs and understands the difference between words that rhyme and don’t they are mastering one of the phonemic awareness skills needed for reading development. Want to read more about rhyming? Click here, here, or here.
Mrs. Wishy-Washy loved to give her animals a good scrub. Let your child rub and scrub some of their toys today. Fill up the sink or a bucket in the backyard and let your child wash their toys. This encourages sensory play which is important for development.
Sensory play is any play the stimulates the senses. Allowing children to play with textures- hard, soft, wet, dry, sticky, smooth, bumpy etc encourage and allows for acceptance of these various textures in other aspects of life. The use of sensory play is soothing for children who are anxious or frustrated. This play also helps develop and connect brain pathways that are needed in more complex learning. Want to read more? Check out this article Why Sensory Play is Important for Development by Educational Playcare
Did you ever wonder why teachers in the early years allow, encourage children to play with playdough? Often times parents see playdough as messy. It sticks to things, it gets on the rug and won’t come off. It gets under your nails and often times it smells strange. So why oh why do teachers want my child to play with it?
I’ll tell you why… it’s good for your child. Click here to read NAEYC’s (National Association for the Education of Young Children) article Playdough Power.
Benefits of playdough:
fine motor development
dramatic (imaginative) play
science (cause and effect, textures etc)
math (size, thickness, number etc)
Ways to encourage and extend playdough play:
add tools (plastic knife, dowel for a rolling pin, cookie cutters)
read a story before playdough play to encourage play based on story topic
add toys (cars, construction vehicles, dolls/plastic toys)
provide kid size kitchen tools (pans, fork, knife etc)
natural products (rocks, sticks, leaves)
provide items to make textures (combs, strainers, buttons etc)
Ways to save your sanity
teach your child to clean up the playdough! use the playdough ball to pick up the smaller pieces
provide a mat, table cloth or cookie sheet for the playdough to be played on to contain the “mess”
provide bins for playdough toys to be collect into at the end of play
have your child think of the items to put into the playdough
Make your own playdough and you control the smell!
Basic no cook playdough recipe
2 cups of flour
2 Tbps of oil (cooking, baby oil, coconut oil etc)
1/2 cup of salt
2 Tbsp cream of tartar
1- 1.5 cups of boiling water
Combine flour, salt and cream of tartar in a bowl
add in oil
Put color and/or scent into 1 cup of boiling water
stir to bring together into a sticky ball. if it is too dry and won’t combine add up to 1/2 additional cup of boiling water, but add it slowly or you will put in too much
when it is a sticky ball, let it cool for a bit
roll it out onto the counter and then kneed the dough for a few minutes until the stickiness is gone. This is an important part in pulling the dough together. after a few minutes if it is still really sticky, add more flour
store in an air tight container when not in use and it should last about a month
Colors and scents:
kool aid packets is a great way to add both color and scent to dough 2 packets added to the dry ingredients should give the color and smell you are looking for
food coloring (gels add more color than liquid)
extracts- vanilla, mint, orange, lemon
spices- cinnamon, apple pie spice, pumpkin pie spice
Sensory play is a popular area in the classroom. This is am important area as many children have sensory issues as well as the amount of fine motor development that occurs with sensory play. This is one area that I am not sure about adding in at this point in my pre-K classroom as it will be tough to clean between children. But, you can add some of this fun into your daily play at home. Here is a fun… and clean one!
Dish soap foam is a fun activity for the kiddos. And you have everything you need at home.
Dish soap– any kind
food coloring (optional)
You need a lot of soap and a little water. I was finishing up the end of a soap bottle so I used the water to rinse out the bottle and get a bit more bubbles out of the bottle. Put the soap in the bottom of the container you want to use. Add some water to the dish. Use an electric mixer to whip up the soap into foam. Keep mixing until it is tight foams (think making meringue).
“Three requirements must be met in order for foam to form. Mechanical work is needed to increase the surface area. This can occur by agitation, dispersing a large volume of gas into a liquid, or injecting a gas into a liquid. The second requirement is that surfactants or surface active components must be present to decrease surface tension. Finally, the foam must form more quickly than it breaks down.” Foam Definition in Chemistry from ThoughtCo
My suggestion is to have your child play with the foam in the sink. If you do not add food coloring… your child will have fun… and your sink will be cleaned! If you follow my Instagram @mydayinpre_k, you can see a video of me mixing the foam.