The rain kept us in a few days this week, so by the time the sunshine returned we had plenty of energy to expend. We made good use of our outside time!Zeanny visited us on Monday for a health lesson. She read us the story Germs! Germs! Germs! all about those dreadful illness causing germs. She did an experiment with us to demonstrate the importance of proper hand washing. Everyone gave Zeanny a high five (after she put glow germ lotion on her hands) then we examined our hands with a blacklight and noticed all the glowing “germs.” We added a few more “germs” then washed our hands the way we typically do. After checking over our hands again, we discovered that we still had a lot of germs left, so we went back and scrubbed with soap all over our hands, including in between fingers and under nails, for 20 seconds while singing a “Rub the Germs Away” song Zeanny taught us. This time we removed most of the germs. The children decided that washing thoroughly was a good idea!
Monday was our first play date day, and therefore our first library day. Susan and Tammy introduced the children to the expectations for library behavior and the schedule, then walked over and had a wonderful time visiting. They renewed our library card and helped to pick out some books to borrow for a couple of weeks. They were quite excited by their choices.Our second butterfly ecased Monday afternoon just before 4PM, so a few friends were able to see it just after it emerged. We set the tank outside on its side Tuesday afternoon in hopes that the rain would soon end and it could find some nectar for sustenance. As we were lining up for lunch on Wednesday, it flew past us and landed in the grass. We were happy to say goodbye and give a proper send off.Homes and houses were introduced through the books Homes and Houses and Homes. We learned about all the different types of materials that homes can be made from, how some are large and some are small, some keep cold or heat out, and some have lots of windows for ventilation, and that homes are located all around the world and may be constructed to fit the environment where they live and the available resources, such as houses on stilts or huts made of mud. We talked about where we live – in a home, in a town, in a state, in a country, on a continent, on the Earth, in our solar system, in our galaxy. We read the book Energy from the Sun about what energy is, and where we get ours. The Cosmic nesting boxes were then introduced, which shows the Milky Way Galaxy, inside of which nests the Solar System, inside of which nests planet Earth, etc. At the art table the children made their own homes by drawing on thick Mat board with pencils or crayons, then painting them with water color markers. We will put them on stands and use them in the block area to build communities.We read Stop, Drop, and Roll about a girl named Jessica who was learning about fire safety in school and was worried about remembering all the different safety procedures. We discussed various fire safety rules and read the book Fire Safety, so we would know to always stay under the smoke, stay out in the open and never hide, call for help, stop, drop and roll if fire is on your clothes, touch doors to see if they are hot before opening them, and make a fire safety plan with your family. We will be visiting the fire station in a bit over a week to meet a firefighter and see the equipment.Henrietta and Wolfgang (our hen and wolf puppets) visited to help us think of ways to appropriately manage our emotions. The children, Henrietta, and Wolfgang had a productive discussion about taking deep breaths, taking a break, having alone time in the quiet house, getting hugs, and spending time with a friend or teacher to help calm ourselves if angry, sad, or over excited. We sang our version of “If You’re Happy and You Know It” with strategies so we can better remember what to do in the moment. We made happy, sad, angry, and excited faces and noticed how our bodies tensed or relaxed by how we were feeling.For woodworking Mr. Bond brought the parts of a bird house with photos of the assembly process. Each group worked together to put the photos in order from the first step to the last, then they took turns helping to sand the parts. Next week they will screw them together. It was a fantastic planning and ordering activity that took some good observing, problem solving, and communication skills. As always, thank you so much Mr. Bond for another fantastic Wednesday!We read All Kinds of Families and Whose Mouse are You? to introduce the similarities and differences among families and to start to get to know each other better. We played “When the cool wind blows” and stepped onto the rug when a statement applied to us, such as “The cool wind blows for everyone who is a sister” or “the cool wind blows for everyone who has an uncle.”
For Spanish with Zeanny we continued to learn about Latino culture and countries where Spanish is the primary language. She introduced items from some of the countries, including an icorina whistle, some sombreros, a coffee grinder, and several other items. We enjoyed singing our Spanish songs and listening to the story El Sombrero del tio Nacho (Uncle Nacho’s Hat) by Harriet Rohmer.Susan read the singing story books Fiddle-I-Fee and Over in the Meadow, then we took out the rhythm instruments and practiced following a rhythm. Susan revised the song “Peter Works with One Hammer” to use the child’s name and singing “strikes with one mallet” to teach the terms strike and mallet, and give each child an opportunity to follow the rhythm of the song. Each child then chose an instrument and practiced resting, playing, and holding.For Friday science we attempted to take a silent listening and looking walk after reading about fall leaves, why they start out green and change color, and the story The Listening Walk. We quickly discovered that it was just not a suitable day for being quiet and listening, so instead we ran around the bandstand before heading to the playground to run some more.