Mushroom Math

I wanted to share this awesome activity that we did earlier this month from Mother Goose Time. Mushroom Math! This was so much fun!

First the boys colored the caps to the mushrooms and attached a variety of different length stems. I always love projects they can partially do together. After they’d completed building their mushrooms I gave them so playdough for the mushrooms to grow in.

Q focused on the fine motor aspect of the project. It also gave us an opportunity to discuss smallest to largest and putting things in order. He also did some counting review.

X was able to use this project to practice addition! This was such a fabulous visual and hands on approach to learning to add.

He spent so much time using this project to work on his addition. Then he joined in some mushroom free play with his brother.

The test of a great activity is if a 2 year old and an almost 5 year old can both build skills and have fun from the same activity. This passes that test with flying colors!!


Pen Control and Advanced Math for Preschool

X has been loving our Mother Goose Time Experience More Math and Experience More Litteracy add-on workbooks. He gets really excited about how they encorporate the monthly theme.

I love how important concepts are reviewed and expanded upon to keep him learning on his current level.

It also pushes him to work on skills he’s not quite as comfortable with. He loves adding. He gets a little frusterated when he’s trying to write his numbers, though. This page was a great balance for him. He was excited to practice addition, which helped him focus on writing his numbers.

Pen control is such an important skill to develop at this age, I’m so thankful that even though it’s a math book, it is a strong focus through out. X loves to draw, so the balance of focused pen control practice and creative opportunity is perfect for him.

The pages are also short enough that they don’t over extend his focus and push him to get frustrated. Some days he’s excited and completes multiple pages. But on days where he may be struggling a little, he can complete one short activity.


Using Art to Teach a Varied Age Group

Today with Mother Goose Time we learned all about Lily Pads. Both boys loved the open ended Invitation to Create materials. Q has really been focusing on drawing circles and has loved cutting paper. The Lily Pad photo was a great prompt to review the color green and gave him the opportunity to draw a bunch of lily pad circles. Afterwards he went to town cutting up his tissue paper. The tissue presented a little bit of a challenge as its much less sturdy then normal paper, so he really had to focus and use his dexterity. In the end did he have something resembling a lily pad and lotus flower? No. But the amount he learned, practiced and focused on was so worth while. Open ended art is such a great opportunity for children to work on the skills they’re currently developing. X, on the other hand, was interested in recreating the photo as closely as he could. This incouraged his observation skills! He’d never colored on tissue paper before and was really pleased with how he could blend the marker colors. This project also gave us the perfect opportunity to discuss the structure and needs of plants growing on the surface of water. X was fascinated that their roots reached waaaay down into the dirt under the water! He was so proud of the end result, and it is deffinitely beautiful. I’m so happy that MGT has encouraged us to move away from adult led crafts to allowing my boys to be truly creative and innovative with the Inspiration to Create activities.


Building Concentration and Focus in Young Children

My husband is plagued by ADHD and I’m a serial multi-tasker. While I manage to follow most tasks through to completion, I can see how beneficial it would be to focus more closely on less tasks at once. Being acutely aware of these traits, I am always eager to find activities for my children that promote focus, concentration and attention to detail.

This month Mother Goose Time included tanagrams as one of our manipulatives. The tanagram activity during our Day 2: Roots lesson was just the ticket. The block size and how easily they could get bumped out of place on the mat was a huge fine motor challenge for Q. But he accepted the challenge, working slowly and with great focus.

He was SO PRPUD after completing each design!

X worked through them pretty quickly, but spent a significant amount of time creating his own design.

Each element had a purpose. He used a variety of descriptive language to explain his design.

It’s amazing how simple activities can really slow us down and give us an opportunity to focus.


Halloween Festivities

We had so much fun at our Halloween party this year! I used our Mother Goose Time holiday pack as the focus of the activities. It made putting the party together so easy! All of the games and activities were planned for me and most of the supplies were included.

We filled our Pumpkin Patch with adorable handmade pumpkins. This was such a fun activity! The big kids could do it independently and I loved how they each came out so unique.

After our pumpkins were finished they dried in our Pumpkin Patch.

While we waited the kids explored pumpkin guts!

I love any excuse to work in a sensory experience. This gave the kids the opportunity to explore the pumpkin and experience the variety of textures. It was also a great exercise in taking turns because there was only one scoop.

We also decorated some monster cookies!

Possibly the most enjoyed activity was our Pin the Patch on the Scarecrow. Everyone had so much fun!

I love activites that the big and little kids can really work together on.


Autumn is Here!

This month with Mother Goose Time has been such a blast! The boys have loved learning all about Weather and the seasons. As we’re in the midst of Autumn (though unseasonably warm) we took advantage of a nice crisp morning to go on a leaf hunt!

They absolutely loved using the sponge and the leaf stencil. I loved how tactile it was. This Invitation to Create gave the boys an opportunity to explore a familiar medium like paint in a new way.

I also used this as an opportunity to review (with X) and introduce (to Q) color mixing. This was a perfect activity for creating Orange!

I was honestly surprised at the wide variety of trees on our property. That gave us the chance to explore so many different kinds of leaves.

Q and I also had a review of large, medium and small.

The boys worked hard putting the real leaves onto the tree. X used this as an opportunity to work on some addition.

X expanded on the drawing prompt at the end of the I Can Read book by adding a Spring tree in addition to his Winter tree. I enjoy how he made sure to include the roots.


Experience More Litteracy: Weather and Changing Seasons

I considered having X do a full on Kindergarten curriculum. But the more planning I did, the more I realized that there were so many aspects of Mother Goose Time that he would want to do alongside Q. I finally decided on expanding the MGT curriculum. I would add activities to challenge X and keep him learning while following the themes for MGT and having him do the activities that he’d enjoy. The next step was figuring out how to expand on the curriculum and deciding what I needed to add. I knew X needed more advanced math, literacy and science aspects. I was so excited when I realized that Mother Goose Time could take care of the math and Literacy aspects for me! The ability to use this curriculum with a variety of ages has always impressed me, and now it could go a step further.

At first I was a little skeptical. Could 2 workbooks keep X engaged and learning? Then I realized these are NOT ordinary workbooks.

These pages are filled with games, coloring, critical thinking and FUN. X loves to cut and the Experience More Literacy book provides him with many opportunities to do so.

Today he got to cut and staple his own little book. He is constantly making books on his own, so this project was perfect for him. Meanwhile he worked on recognizing letters and exploring the sound of the letter C.

I’m excited to keep this little book for him to triumphantly read on his own as we progress with his reading skills.

There is a focus on the months letters. They are presented in such a variety of ways that connections are solidly made. These books are so well thought out!

But it doesn’t stop at writing, phonics and emergent reader skills- it works on critical thinking and creating stories of their own! X loves creating his own stories. He’s really going to enjoy the opportunity to problem solve and illustrate with this story prompt. I can’t wait to see what he comes up with!