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$12.00Festivals of Light‘Sneezy the Snowman’ Unit of Study Highlights Book by Maureen Wright Rolling, rolling, rolling ….. Stacking huge snowballs ….. Adding nose, mouth, eyes and a hat …… Making a snowman is something many of us have done time and time again. In this story, Sneezy the Snowman is cold. In trying to warm up, he makes choices that are not in his best interest! Children will find the humor in this story as they realize that the choices made have a negative consequence. This is a good way to talk about choices with children. The story is also written with rhyming words which can help children develop listening and literacy skills. There are a lot of fun, learning activities that are inspired by this book. Through hands-on activities, children: • Develop visual discernment skills in playing snowman matching games • Use higher level thinking and problem-solving skills to describe why their snowman melted when creating their own melted snowman • Discover the ‘life cycle’ of a snowman, and snow or ice • Create a unique, one-of-a-kind snowman with a balloon, paint, and art scraps$12.00Children are born with such promise and potential! As early childhood educators and providers, it is our responsibility to support and nurture each child’s development, and to encourage and celebrate individuality. In order to do this, it is important to know the children in care, understand ‘normal’ development, have knowledge of early learning standards, and be able to assess where each child is in their development. Activities that help children recognize their strengths and areas of growth include: · Learn · Explore · Practice · Discover Children that recognize and celebrate their skills are developing positive self-esteem, which is critical for school and life success.$12.00The Circus Unit of Study Highlights Peanuts, popcorn, and pretzels ….. Lions and tigers and elephants ….. Clowns of all shapes and sizes ….. Acrobats and tightrope walkers ….. The circus has so much for children to watch and marvel at. The ‘circus’ has something for everyone – whether it is eating popcorn, peanuts and cotton candy or doing amazing feats. Children love to imitate and act out what they see. Being a lion at the circus, or an acrobat crossing a tightrope, children are using many of their large muscles while developing balance and coordination. And of course, for those who are very verbal, being the ‘ring master’ is the perfect job for them! Children love to show others what they can do. Through circus activities, children have an opportunity to: • Cuddle up in a ‘circus tent book nook’ with a good book • Discover their silly self as a clown through creating a clown costume • Practice large motor skills as a ‘tightrope walker’, ‘stilt stomper’, and ‘fire jumper’ The circus can bring memories that last a lifetime.$12.00Cranes lifting items high ….. Bulldozing large piles of dirt ….. Scraping the surface smooth ….. Trucks hauling away rocks and dirt …… These are all activities frequently seen at a road construction sites. Many children are fascinated by big, heavy construction equipment. They love the size, the noise, and the actions of these big machines. When children use trucks in the sandbox or sensory table, they are using their imagination to mimic what they see in their real, everyday life… this is how they learn about the world around them. Exploring road and bridge construction provides hours of imaginative play. Through hands-on activities, children: · Re-create sounds and actions seen and heard at construction sites · Transform boxes into ramps, bridges and tunnels · Use their gross muscle coordination to move a ball along an obstacle course · Play a game by following a ‘road’ to park their car in a ‘garage’ Our world relies on safe roads and bridges. Encouraging children to learn about roads and bridges could spark an interest that eventually results in them becoming architects and engineers.‘Harold and the Purple Crayon’ Unit Book by Crockett Johnson A cardboard box made into a spaceship….. Blankets tossed over a table that turned into a castle….. Making the most delicious cake out of mud …… Imaginary friends and pretend play made up much of our early years. Through this, we learned to be creative and problem solve – just as Harold does in the story ‘Harold and the Purple Crayon’! Problem solving and creativity often go hand-in-hand. Usually, to solve a problem, higher level thinking, analysis, and innovation are needed which is part of the creative process. Every day, children are thinking about the things in their lives and what to do with them or how to use them. As children solve problems, they gain knowledge and self-confidence in their ability to succeed. There are a lot of fun, learning activities that can be developed based on this book. Through hands-on activities, children: • Increase their usable vocabulary (helps them get ready to read!) • Discover how to make the color purple • Strengthen finger muscles and fine motor coordination through a cutting activity. Harold has several other adventures too. Crockett Johnson wrote stories that children could easily relate to.‘If You Give A Mouse A Cookie’ Book by Laura Joffe Numeroff Milk and cookies ….. Scissors and tape ….. Crayons and paper…… We all have memories of these items, which are critical parts of the book ‘If You Give A Mouse A Cookie’. The story line of this book is so typical of many of us – we do one thing and it triggers another activity or memory! (How many of you go to put laundry in and end up doing something entirely different when you get to the laundry room!) One key literacy skill that is developed through this book is the ability to remember and sequence the order of activities. This is an important school readiness task. There are a lot of fun, learning activities that can be developed based on this book. Through hands-on activities, children: • Participate in a reenactment of the story, based on the sequence of events • Practice counting skills with the ‘Cookie Count’ game • Experiment with different ways to paint, using different painting tools • Improve scissor skills when cutting grass ‘hair’ This book is the first in the ‘If You Give…’ series by Laura Joffe Numeroff and Felicia Bond. Children will delight in the antics of Mouse as things they might also do!$12.00Taking care of the earth is for everyone all the time$12.00Teaching children to be generous and caring can help ensure a peaceful and supportive environment where all children grow and develop to their maximum potential. This is not only a great environment for children, but also for the adults that work in it… win-win for all! Guiding children in expressing compassion and empathy towards others through day to day activities will help them develop life-long practices of caring for others. Through hands-on activities, children: · Create a ‘coupon book’ of nice things to do for others · Make a ‘I Care’ puppet to use in role playing how to care for others · Bake cookies to share with others Help the children in your care learn that when we care for each other, we all are cared for!$12.00The winter days can get long, and the bustle of the holiday season can cause an overload of emotions for children. Sometimes we all need to find some stress relief. Intentionally planning comfort-focused activities can help children (and adults) weather the stress of the season. Children experience the fun of ‘popcorn and pajamas’ through these hands-on activities: · Hear the story, sing the song and act out ‘Ten in the Bed’ · Examine popcorn using magnifying glasses · Improve their matching skills with the Pajama Matching game · Use their fingerprints to create a ‘popping’ picture Take some time to relax, put on some comfy clothes and snuggle up with the children and some good books! You will enjoy it and so will the children J$12.00Making resolutions… Counting down the ‘ball’ drop… Seeing fireworks… These are common things many of us do to ring in the New Year. Young children are just starting to understand how our world measures ‘time’. Part of that understanding includes knowledge of days, weeks and years. This Unit explores the start of a ‘new year’. Through hands-on activities, children will:
‘Planting A Rainbow’ Unit Book by Lois Ehlert Sunny days in the garden ….. The sprinkler swishing to and fro ….. Amazement as the seeds turn into beautiful flowers …… The book Planting a Rainbow can evoke these memories of childhood gardening. Planting seeds and watching them grow into beautiful flowers or wonderful vegetables is a great way to expose children to the wonders of the environment. Once children have experienced the colors that can be found in the garden, they will be more aware of colors in every part of their world. Gardening is also great physical exercise, can be a tool to teach scientific observation and recording, and may instill in children the love of caring for our environment … all good things! There are so many great activities that can be based on gardening, and all the colors that surround us. Through hands-on activities, children: • Write their names (letters or other words) using seeds • Use rainbow ribbons in a Maypole dance • Squish-paint to make a crown of rainbow-colored flowers • Turn fruit into rainbow skewers, yum! Planting A Rainbow by Lois Ehlert may inspire young children to become ardent gardeners, a practice that can become a life-long interest.
- Begin to understand how a calendar helps track a year
- Experience some traditional activities around the world for ‘ringing in’ the New Year
- Practice counting skills with a bubble wrap blast countdown