Sunday, February 28, 2010

Tot School - Week 2

Tot School

D is 19 months old

After composing last week's post about Tot School, I was really looking forward to Tot School with Dylan this week. As odd as it sounds, I was happy to have a name for what I want to do with D. We have been doing projects and constructive play since D was able, but for some reason over the past 2 weeks my thought process on all of this has changed. I've decided to take a more active roll in what we do. In the past, I would plan an activity on occasion, but normally let D completely determine what we would be doing for the day. Now, I'm not saying that I believe at 19 month old should have be in a structured environment. I just think that by taking a more active interest and roll in D's activities, we can create a nurturing, loving environment for D to learn in.

Anyway... back to Tot School for this week. This week's theme was Purim. This was great theme to start with because there are so many activities that we can do for this holiday. The holiday's celebration is about being a kid at heart, no matter your age. We started the week reading from Celebrate: A Book of Jewish Holidays. This introduced D to the basic idea of the story, and how we celebrate today. We then made a crown for Queen Esther.

To make the crown we used dot markers to decorate a foam crown we found at Michael's. This was not the first time D used this kind of tool, but it was interesting to watch. I think she last used them a year or so ago in her Mommy & Me class. She got the hang of them real quick, and as I expected really enjoyed putting the top on and taking it off.

At first I gave D one or two markers to use at a time.  Letting her choose which marker we should open. As time went on, I took off all the tops and placed all the markers and their tops on the tray in front of D.  I was really impressed when she placed all of the tops back on the markers.  Matching the top the the correct bottle.  The only time she had a problem was when one of the tops fell on the ground.  The only cap she had left was for the marker in her hand, so she capped the extra marker with that one.  She fixed it after I got the marker top off the floor for her.
When D was done I closed the crown for her, and she enjoyed wearing and playing with it.  This lasted for about half an hour, when I changed her diaper she thought the should use it on her legs and it ripped. I taped it back together, but it's not the same.  After doing a couple projects with D, I have learned that she enjoys taking them apart as much as she does putting them together, so I know what's coming.  I am trying to teach her to respect what she makes, but it is her work, so I can't press to hard.  

Our next project for the week was to make a grogger, a noise maker.  This was fun.  We painted a toilet paper roll.  This was the first time D has used a paintbrush.  In the past, we stuck with fingers.  I was curious to see how well she could control the paintbrush.  She did a really great job!  I think we will do more with this.  If I'm brave, we'll even use the easel we have for her.

After letting the paint dry, I used packing tape to close one end of the tube.  D and I then poured some unpopped popcorn kernels into the tube.  Well, we tried.  I knew that I needed to find a container to catch our misses, but I didn't pick the right one.  This led to D practicing her fine motor skills as we picked up the kernels that we all over the floor.  (Thankfully, "Hoover" otherwise known as our dog was upstairs.)
Here is D with her final product!

Our final project for the week was our stART project.  This project went along with the book When It's Purim.  D made a craft hamantaschen.  To know more about this project please follow the link.

We then make real hamantaschen.  And have been enjoying making them disappear!

We had a really great week!

Now as I said I am really looking forward to next week.  For a few reasons, one is our theme for next week is Dr. Seuss as it is his "birthday."  The next is that I received an email with a link for Grow Up Learning.  This website is filled with ideas to use to "teach" your child through play.  This is one of the better sites I have seen for this.  It will track your child's milestones, and allow you to save activities, make comments and keep a journal.  Be sure to check this out because for a limited amount of time they are letting you join without a fee.  I am not sure what the fee will be if you have to pay one, but for a free resource this rocks!

The last reason I'm excited for next week is that I made my first Tot Book.  Carissa of 1+1+1=1 and Tot School has a great selection of Tot Books that she created and we can use.  I created two of my own for D to use in the coming weeks.  I will talk more about the Dr. Seuss one next week as I see how well it works with D.  I will upload my files in case there is anyone who would be interested in a Dr. Seuss Tot Pack for this coming week.

To see what other people did this week go to Tot School.


  1. What a great week. We call our dogs our vacuum cleaners too, at this point after Xander eats we actually call them in to clean up the floor for us. And thanks for the heads up about Dr. Suess' birthday, very fitting that he shares it with my oldest brother who always likes to make plays on words. We've been enjoying Dr. Suess ABC, it's very fun to read.

  2. I love the crown its super cute :-)


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