Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Wow and Happy Thanksgiving.

Um, hi, hello. I know we have been absent. I know we (mostly me) keep saying we'll post this or that and then silence for months. But people are visiting! Thank you. More than 100 people a day are here visiting our site and I am just so surprised! 
 I know Thanksgiving is tomorrow, so there is not a lot of time to create before the big day, but when your tummies are full or while waiting to eat, here are a few things we've done in my preschool class (follow me on Instagram if you like).
 It all started with the mayflower. This one is quick and requires little, plus there is the fun memento of your kiddo's little hand forever printed on the page. We just used half a sheet of light blue construction paper, had the kids draw on white clouds and blue water (or whatever they wanted, which DID include Elsa!) Then paint one hand brown and plop it on the paper for your boast and masts. Then glue on little white squares for sails. I think I originally saw this in Family Fun magazine. I will go back and check.
 The turkey gets a lot of play this time of year, however I am pretty certain he never looks like this when I'm about to chow at Thanksgiving dinner. Another simple project. Cut a cheap paper plate in half, glue a peanut  shaped (or whatever shape you want your turkey body to be) piece of brown paper to it. If you just draw the shape, the little ones can cut it our themselves. Draw in features (or use other materials - orange paper for a beak, googly eyes, even yarn for that red thing by their beaks). the next part can be done with construction paper, but I think it looks best with tissue paper. Voila! Turkey!
 We talked in class about how the Wampanoag Indians helped the pilgrims and taught them about corn. The kids explored the kernels, removed them from the cob, and we also compared field corn to popcorn. Then I air popped a batch of popcorn. 
I was able to use Indian Corn last year which added in a fun dimension and I even popped it in the microwave to show that even corn on the cob can pop!
We used both the popped corn and the field corn kernels (popcorn kernels would clearly work too) to create out own harvested corn. I just eyeballed the shapes for the cob and the husks and let them glue everything on however they thought it best.
 This one is pretty standard this time of year. You can add on some feet, a beak, eyes and all that fun stuff to make it even more fancy.
 I'll have to look up where I got this idea too, but it is a turkey handshake. First we just started with making it on our own hands before trying to make one with a friend. The open hand is the feathers and the "thumbs up" on its side is the body and head. the kids like this a lot.
 I always love a little bit on Montessori style work in my classroom. This is not just a simple transferring activity. It also can be an introduction to how cranberries are harvested and show that they float (maybe a little sink or float question before filling the bowl up?). There are 3 different utensils I put out for them to transfer with - all bought at the thrift store. The spoon is slotted so the water doesn't really transfer along.
This can also just be done with a bowl and any sort of sectioned off container, like an ice cube tray, using the fingers to transfer. This is also good as a sensory activity.
The last one I have for today is this story telling bracelet and poem from Dr. Jean. It's a good way for the kids to have a visual way to remember how the first Thanksgiving came to be.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and thank you so much for visiting our blog.

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