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Pom Pom Push: Fine Motor Activity for Toddlers

January 30, 2015

Not gonna lie, homeschooling and staying focused with a toddler underfoot can be quite a challenge some days!  A big help to making days go smoothly is creating an activity or two just for my toddler to do; this was our latest activity-- a Big and Little Pom Pom Push.  Bonus that we were working on some math skills, talked about colors, and got those little fingers working to strengthen his fine motor skills!
As simple as this activity was, it kept my 2 year old occupied for a good 15 minutes as he worked on pushing the pom poms in the holes, unscrewing the container, and doing it once or twice more!

What you need:
Empty Parmesan Cheese Container
Handful of big and little pom poms
I first showed Baby Brother that there were two ways to push the pom poms into the container-- using the little holes and the big hole; he caught on real quick as to which pom poms go in which hole!  I encouraged him to get all the pom poms into the container as we talked about colors, counting, and size.  He delighted in dumping it out and putting them all back in again!
Hope your toddler enjoys this simple fine motor activity as much as mine did!

Here's some more great fine motor activities to try soon!
QTip Train Art Printable from Craftulate
A is for Alien Craft from Stir the Wonder
Introducing Scissors to Toddlers from House of Burke
Toothpaste Slime for Dental Health Month from Still Playing School
Fun Pre Writing Activity for Toddlers from Lalymom
99 fine motor ideas for ages 1 to 5
I'd love for you to follow along so you never miss out on one of our fun activities we share at School Time Snippets!
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2014-2015 Curriculum Plans: UPDATE!

January 28, 2015

 In the midst of sharing a a lot of preschool related activities lately, Big Brother has been working on a hodge podge of curriculum since October.  We finished up Heart of Dakota: Beyond in October, but at that point I was not ready to begin the next package from Heart of Dakota according to his age/ abilities.  Thus we decided to do a 4 week Unit Study on Pioneers that took us into November, rowed Cranberry Thanksgiving for the third time!!, and then ended up doing the basics and a little Christmas Around the World Unit to add in a bit of geography and crafting into our studies in December.
The New Year has come and we are taking a slightly different course for the rest of the year.  Next year is still up in the air, but time will come when I am sure I will have made a decision : )  Hope so anyways! I just tend to worry and fret over it until that decision is made.  Teaching your own child, although a blessing, can be very overwhelming!  So many choices and I just want to "do it right."

Anyways, we spent the first two weeks rowing again with Five in a Row!!  I was going to make it a third, but although I love the literature based type of learning, I am realizing my son does not.  I cannot really pin-point what it is because he loves being read to and doing different activities, but he just isn't enjoying it enough for me to continue to put in the effort to get things prepped each week.   So.... where does that take us???

Knowing that he has enjoyed his workbook style math curriculum from Christian Light and wanting do get away from American History for a bit, I decided to add in some workbooks from Rod and Staff.  We will also be adding in Grammar in hopes that it helps encourage and build on his expressive language skills.

So here is what my 7 year old will be working through til our month long Summer hiatus....
{affiliate links included}
Social Studies: Rod and Staff Grade 2 Our Father's World
{and adding in activities from Global Art and Beginning Geography}
Science: Rod and Staff Grade 2 Patterns of Nature Set
Math: Christian Light Unit(s) 200
Spelling: All About Spelling Level 2 {soon to be ordering Level 3}
English/Grammar: Rod and Staff Grade 2 Preparing to Build
Daily Reading
.... and journaling, handwriting, and art will be thrown into the mix throughout the week....

I'm very interested to see how this workbook style curriculum works out; workbooks tend to get a bad rap as they aren't very "hands-on" and seem more like "school at home" rather than homeschooling {there IS a difference!}   However, I do intend to add in crafts and projects as I see fit; he is very much a "let's just get it done/ no fluff" type of learner.  I know that I loose him if I tend to ramble on too much and/ or do too much {like I am right now : ) ).  And with baby #4 on his way very shortly, I need to keep things simple for all of us! I'll also get a better feel if this is the type of curriculum I should look at for next year.

So how about you?  Have you made any major curriculum changes to begin the New Year?

I'd love for you to follow along so you never miss out on one of our fun activities we share at School Time Snippets!
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 ©2011-2014 School Time Snippets. All rights reserved. You are free to link back to my website but all text, photos, and other content may not be reproduced without the written consent of the author.
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DIY Parachute: Captain Sky Blue Storybook Go Along

January 27, 2015

Today we are sharing our latest Poppins Book Nook story and activity for the theme, To the Laboratory!  After browsing through several books full of different science experiments... and wanting to do a lot of them, I finally narrowed it down to one and decided on exploring air resistance by making our own parachute.
post may contain affiliate links.
Well, one parachute led to three-- so each kiddo could have one, and then that led to a little experiment about which type of material was best!

We found the experiment in Usborne Book of Science Activities Vol.2 and was a go along activity for our storybook, Captain Sky Blue.

Captain Sky Blue is full of airplane lingo and is a cute story that begins on Christmas morning when a little boy receives Captain Sky Blue and a toy airplane.  They have many adventures together, but one day the toy airplane breaks and Captain Sky Blue is left parachuting through the sky landing far from home.  A rather strange underwater event takes Captain Sky Blue back to Santa's Workshop where he is soon reunited with his friend.

Our first parachute was made using some string, square piece of fabric, tape, and of course our flyer, a Lego Man!  I sent my kiddos up the stairs and had them drop them down below.  Up and down the stairs the kiddos ran to retrieve their parachute and do it all over again.
And here's a few more parachutes we made:
We found that the fabric parachute with strings fell the slowest, followed by the large plastic bag.... And there wasn't much air resistance with the wax paper parachute or the doily!  The fabric parachute with pipe cleaners fell quite fast too, and we believe it is because the pipe cleaners made the parachute heavier, thus overcoming the air resistance.

Take a moment to check out other books and activities for the To the Laboratory! theme!  Hope it inspires you to go beyond just reading a book...





See you next month as we'll be sharing the last Poppins Book Nook theme for the 2014-2015 year!
Enchanted Homeschooling Mom ~ 3 Dinosaurs ~ To the Moon and Back ~ Planet Smarty Pants ~ Farm Fresh Adventures ~ Growing in God�s Grace ~ Chestnut Grove Academy ~ Learning and Growing the Piwi Way ~ The Usual Mayhem~ Preschool Powol Packets ~ Monsters Ed Homeschool Academy ~ Adventures in Mommydom ~Teach Beside Me ~ Life with Moore Babies ~ Kathy�s Cluttered Mind ~ Are We There Yet? ~ Our Crafts N Things ~Hopkins Homeschool ~ ABC Creative Learning ~ Joy Focused Learning ~ P is for Preschooler ~ My Bright Firefly ~A Mommy�s Adventures ~ Inspiring 2 New Hampshire Children ~ World for Learning ~ Ever After in the Woods ~Golden Grasses ~ A glimpse of our life ~ Journey to Excellence ~ Happy Little Homemaker ~ Little Homeschool Blessings ~ Raventhreads ~ Tots and Me ~ As We Walk Along The Road ~ Stir the Wonder ~ For This Season ~Where Imagination Grows ~ The Canadian Homeschooler ~ School Time Snippets ~ Peakle Pie ~ A Moment in our World ~ Every Bed of Roses ~ Finchnwren ~ At Home Where Life Happens ~ The Library Adventure ~ Embracing Destiny ~ Day by Day in our World ~ Our Homeschool Studio ~ A �Peace� of Mind ~ Thou Shall Not Whine ~ SAHM I am  ~ Simple Living Mama

 
 ©2011-2015 School Time Snippets. All rights reserved. You are free to link back to my website but all text, photos, and other content may not be reproduced without the written consent of the author.
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Valentine Themed Button Snake

January 23, 2015

I have another Valentine themed activity to share with you today! Last week for Fine Motor Friday, we shared a Playdough Search and Count Activity; my 2 and 3 year old both loved digging through the play dough to find the hearts.  It was a great activity to reinforce counting skills, too!

This week I put my amateur sewing skills to use and made a Valentine Themed Button Snake!  Just a few materials, quick stitching, and a new activity was born! And this was a great activity to strengthen fine motor skills!
To make your own, you'll need to gather:

  • ribbon
  • two buttons
  • needle
  • thread
  • foam hearts {I purchased a pack of glitter hearts from the Dollar Store}

As I mentioned, you do not have to be a seamstress of any sort to put this together {if I can do it, you can, too!  That should give you hope!}  Using your needle and thread, sew a button on each end of your ribbon.  Next cut slits into your foam hearts... and the Valentine Themed Button Snake is ready to be put together!
Encourage your little one to slide the button through the slit in the foam heart... continue until they are all on the ribbon. You could even use this activity to sneak in counting, addition, and patterning!
For more Button Fun, check out:

And don't miss out on more fine motor activities shared this week:
Smashing ABC Moon Rocks
Stir the Wonder
Powerful Mothering
Still Playing School
Little Bins for Little Hands
 
 ©2011-2015 School Time Snippets. All rights reserved. You are free to link back to my website but all text, photos, and other content may not be reproduced without the written consent of the author.
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The Happy Man and His Dump Truck Story-Telling Basket

January 19, 2015

I love putting activities together to go along with books we have read and/or are currently reading; hence my love for using Five in a Row with my oldest for several years.  Doing some sort of craft or learning activity based on a book, just makes it come alive in a hands-on way.  Another great way to enjoy a book is to re-create it using your own toys!

post may contain affiliate links.
The Happy Man and His Dump Truck was given to me at my oldest son's baby shower!  Yes! We have had it for many years and it has been enjoyed by all three kiddos! It is a very cute and simple Golden Book.  

The story line begins with a happy man driving along when he meets a pig who joins the man in his dump truck.  As they drive along, the pig sees his friends and asks the man if they can all join him.  They continue to drive along and when the man sees a friend, he waves his hand and tips the dumper... all the animals slide down into a big heap.  Soon after the man drives them all back to the farm.  
We re-created the story by making our own Story-telling Basket.  I grabbed our blue Kid-O Tip Truck, farm animals from our String a Farm Set, a Fisher Price plastic dog, and a person from other toy we have.  I placed them all in a basket with the book and invited the kiddos to play as I read the story. 

Another great way to play would be to read the story first and then have your child re-tell the story in their own words using the book.  It is a very simple book, so it would be plenty easy for toddlers and preschoolers to join in the fun! 

For more literature based learning and activities, check out:


 
©2011-2015 School Time Snippets. All rights reserved. You are free to link back to my website but all text, photos, and other content may not be reproduced without the written consent of the author.
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