Saturday, July 13, 2013

Tot School: Green Week

Sophie is 13.5 months.

This week was all about the color green and we had lots of fun doing activities!  This week was the first week I've wondered if Sophie is actually starting to pick up on the whole color thing.  There have been several small hints that she's starting to recognize the differences between the colors we've been working on.  We'll see!  It's neat to see her little wheels turning with the activities.

Sensory Activities

I've decided to be more intentional about not limiting our sensory activities to just this bin every week.  Sophie is still very much in a "put everything in her mouth" phase, so it's difficult to balance my desire for her to get to experience these things with the fact that she just wants to put EVERYTHING in her mouth!

Anyway, this week's sensory bin was filled with split peas, plastic ice cubes, plastic lids from baby food pouches and green poms.  There was a green scoop, green bowl, and a green shark colander of sorts.  Once again we utilized the kiddie pool to help contain the mess (did I mention she's also hit the desire to throw phase? - we are deep in the throes of learning about gravity!)  She really liked feeling the peas in her hands and learning to stir with the scoop.

We also tried playing with shaving cream in a bag (I'm not quite brave enough to try outside of the bag yet!)  Sophie was pretty unimpressed.  We'll try it again in the future.

What's in our Book Basket?

We started our week with a trip to the library and most of the books we got were a HUGE hit with Sophie!
Some of Sophie's favorite books this week were Where's Spot?, Green, and Big Red Barn.  Here are the books that got pulled out of our book basket over and over!

Tot Trays

This weeks Tot Trays were also a big hit with the little lady!  We probably spent more time at Tot School this week than we ever have before.

Her first tray was floral foam and golf tees.  She absolutely LOVED this activity!  She would put them in and take them out of the holes I had created over and over.  She also enjoyed the sound that the tees made when she put them in the little cup.  She did not, however, like the residue the foam left on her hands.  She kept sticking them out for me to wipe off.

Her tongue has started to make an appearance whenever she's concentrating - I can't get enough! :)

Her second Tot Tray was her new Melissa and Doug Geometric Stacker.  I knew she was going to like this one - I bought it specifically after trying to find something that would mimic playing with Clay's headphone jack.  Near the end of the week she seemed to more naturally place the shapes on the correct colored post - one of my hints that she may be starting to pick up on these colors.  It was not all the time, but it certainly happened more frequently than it did at the beginning of the week.

 Her third tray was putting baby food pouch lids into a parmesan cheese container (an idea I got from Nicole at The Kavanaugh Report)  She moderately enjoyed it at the beginning of the week but this was the favorite by Thursday!  I bet she spent ten minutes putting them in and shaking them out.  She really liked me counting each lid as she put it in.

Gross Motor Activities

We had lots of fun playing with my big green exercise ball this week!  It was big enough that she had to roll it instead of throw it which finally helped her learn the concept of rolling.  She chased this thing around the house for a good long while.  It was one of the first things she wanted to do each morning when she woke up (probably because she couldn't miss spotting it from across the room!).

I found a copy of Slow and Steady, Get Me Ready at Goodwill for $3 and couldn't pass it up after seeing positive reviews online.  It gives an activity for each week from birth to age 5 to work up to kindergarten readiness.  Most of the activities are things we do naturally in Tot School, but some are things I would never think to include.  The recommended activity for this week was the "imaginary bridge" - having your toddler walk on a tape line.  I have to admit I thought this was a little advanced for my just walking toddler, but Sophie had a lot of fun trying!  I would show her how I put my feet on the tape and walked to the end.  She tried so hard - it was pretty precious.  We ended up doing it together (me holding her hands) while she worked diligently to put her feet on the tape.  It was definitely good exercise for her and she had a lot of fun with it.  (Note: she also recommended trying to walk backwards on the tape line...we passed on that one for the time being! ;))

 Other Tot School Activities

We painted a green leaves on a tree with Do-A-Dot paint markers and ate kiwi for a snack
(still not impressed). 

Toddler Life

We FINALLY were able to take Sophie out on her first bike ride this week!  She absolutely LOVED it!  She doesn't look so sure in this picture because it was taken before we really got started (and she wasn't keen on the helmet), but once she started going she was sold.  We ended up riding for about a half an hour because she was enjoying it so much.  By the end she was wanting to help Daddy with the handle bars.  I see many bike rides in our future! :)

She also demonstrated her new skill and a new word this week.  She learned to stand on her chair and say "no"...two toddler rites of passage that I wouldn't have minded coming a bit later! :)
Does it make me a terrible mother that I took 5 seconds to snap a picture before making her get down?? :/ 

What's Next?

I've decided to wait a couple weeks before introducing a new color.  I feel like she's starting to grasp these four (red, blue, yellow, and green) and I want to spend a few weeks just focusing on these before I confuse her with more.  We'll do some fun multi-color activities to enjoy these colors a bit before moving on!

Want to see how other families do Tot School?  For tons more ideas be sure to visit these sites I'm linking to this week!
Tot School Tuesday at See Vanessa Craft
Tuesday Tots at Rainy Day Mum
Link and Learn at No Time for Flashcards
Show and Share Saturday Link Up at I Can Teach My Child

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