Thursday, June 27, 2013


I got this lovely idea from Pinterest yesterday.  This morning I had to run to Michaels for something and decided to look for the materials to make this numeration work for Magoo.

This work proved to be incredibly simple to make.

  • 1 green basket (score, the baskets are 50% off this week!)
  • 1 sprig of Ivy (one sprig has 48 leaves on it--the work needs 45)
  • 1 sheet of white cardstock
  • 1 sheet of tan cardstock or the back of a pad of paper
  • Numeral stickers 0-9
I plan to cut the the white paper 2x2 and the tan 2 1/2x2 1/2 a bit larger and then laminate the squares.  I bought raised stickers so they will go on top of the laminate.

Direct Aim:     ·  Concentration              ·  Logic & Reasoning
                        ·  Coordination                ·  Problem Solving/Decision Making
                        ·  Confidence                   ·  Learning names of numbers 1-10
                        ·  Independence               ·  Furthering Math Development
                        ·  Order                           ·  Sequencing Numbers
                        ·  Predictability                 ·  Gaining Concepts of Numbers
                        ·  Exactness                     ·  Concreteness

Indirect Aim:  
  • Reinforce the concept of zero (0)
  • An understanding of the constancy of the abstraction of numerals: four is always four of something; its quantity is “four-ness”; it is not dependent on its mass. 
  • Reinforcement and verification as to whether the child knows: sequence of numbers, the association of a specific symbol and the corresponding numerical set, and how many separate units are needed to form each set 1 to 10.
  • Unconscious preparation for the decimal system, linear counting and abstractions.

 Preparation:  Spindle Boxes

This is how mine turned out...


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Music Time

I love kids music!  I loved it when I taught and still love it now as a mom.  I'm fine with just about any crazy kids song to sing along with in the car.  My husband on the other hand, has a very slim acceptance of kids music that is acceptable while he is in the car or at home.  I thought I would just post some fun cd's that we love...not discriminating if there are annoying songs included or not.

We love most of Dr. Jean, sometimes the songs are a little to crazy for the classroom, but those tend to be great for singing along with in the car.

We also love Frank Leto

The BareNaked Ladies
Ken Medema
Hap Palmer
Wee Hairy Beasties
Tom Chapin
Red Grammer

We also enjoy a good VeggieTale Sing-A-Long
and have fun with music from when I was a kid...




Thursday, February 21, 2013

Let Out the Sunshine

I spent some time reading this book today in preparation for a conference session I am giving next month concerning art at the early childhood level.  The book has a great introduction, theory, and actual art presentations and sequence.  I found myself underlining, making notations, and jotting down ideas of ways to inspire teachers to allow for art to happen in a Montessori setting.  Several times throughout my reading I noted that the child should have a beautiful, peaceful, well lit area to create.  This should be a place fully prepared by the teacher, but then the child is allowed to be independent in choosing the activity, creating, and the clean up process.

Give them a warm inviting area, without adult involvement and they will create.

Just before bedtime this evening I was caught off guard by my 5 1/2 year old.  "Mama, I need to have some glue in my room."  Me, "ughhhh no!" (without even taking a second to think). Humphrey, "Mama, I really need some glue in my room!!!"   Me, "You have a nice art area downstairs where you may have glue, why do you think you need it in your room?"  Humphrey, "Mama, I need to create" (said in a dreamy voice).

Let Out the Sunshine, you have created an inner dilema for me.  Thanks a lot!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Story Problems

After dinner tonight, Papa and Humphrey (5 1/2) worked on story problems...she got out of reading a book to him, but he won out on hearing her read :)
Ryan needs a hole 6 feet deep.

He has already dug 4 feet.

How much further does Ryan have to dig?

2 feet


Matthew has 4 oranges.

Katelyn has 5 oranges.

Kristen has 2 oranges.

Ryan has 1 orange.

How many oranges does the whole family have?

12 oranges


Magoo and Papa and Mama each have 2 mittens.

How many mittens do they have all together?

6 mittens


I have 10 fingers.

Some of my fingers have owies on them.

4 of my fingers do not have owies.

How many of my fingers do have owies?

6 fingers


Anna has to practice her violin.

She has to spend 3 minutes on each of her songs.

She has 3 songs to practice.

How many minutes will Anna have to practice her violin?

9 minutes


Magoo needs to shampoo her hair for 2 minutes.

Then she dumps water on her head for 2 minutes.

Then Humphrey begins to shampoo her hair for 3 minutes.

Then Humphrey dumps water on her head for 1 minute.

How long does it take for the 2 girls to get their hair washed?

8 minutes


Wendy had 12 inches of snow on her driveway.

She used a shovel to remove 8 of the inches.

How many inches of snow are left on Wendy’s driveway?

4 inches


Humphrey is helping Papa work on the shop.

Papa needs a board 6 inches long.

Humphrey found a board 8 inches long.

How many inches does Humphrey need to cut off that board to get the size Papa needs?

2 inches

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Snow Day have my morning routine interrupted to the news of a snow day--glorious!

An extra day home with the girls and nothing on the "to do" list equals time for violin, creating art with the "spin art machine", painting, making doughnuts for snack and reading about snow.

For naptime today, the girls snuggled up 'campout style' in their sleeping bags and listened to me read snowy books. We read: The Snowy Day--Ezra Jack Keats, Elmer's Snow Day--David McKee, The Mitten--Jan Brett, The Mitten--Jim Aylesworth, and Katy and the Big Snow--Virginia Lee Burton.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wintertime Playdough

Ahhh...peace and quiet. 

The girls and I mixed up a batch of fresh playdough a little while ago, hence the peace and quiet.  While scanning Pinterest the other day I came across "Sparkly Snow" playdough.  It's simply homemade playdough with glitter added rather than a color.  For added sensorial enjoyment we added some mint extract.  The girls incorporated the glitter into the warm dough for at least 30 minutes (peace & quiet) and then we found a reusable plastic container for it to be stored in.  I picked up a clear & glitter tray at Walmart the other day for $1.97, so the playdough is located on it along with a basket of Christmas cookie cutters and a rolling pin.

Sparkly Snow Playdough

  • 1 cup salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 Tablespoons cream of tartar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • one small container sparkly white glitter
  1. In medium saucepan, and with burner OFF, combine dry ingredients and stir.
  2. Add liquid ingredients and stir again.
  3. With burner on LOW, stir until the mixture is VERY thick, about two minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and allow to cool a bit.
  5. Add glitter and then knead dough until smooth.
  6. Store in ziploc bag or plastic dish with lid.