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Preschool Exploration: Bug Habitats

This week with Mother Goose Time we had so much fun learning about all different kinds of bug habitats. From leaves to sand to dirt to hives, we learned about where bugs live! This encouraged great daily conversations about why certain bugs live in certain conditions and how those conditions help protect them from predators, find food, etc. 

I focused on incorporating our school concepts into play this week. I made “mud dough” which the boys have loved using for a variety of bug building and habitat creating projects (plus some cakes and cookies since it smells like chocolate!).

X even created some habitats of his own! I love the thought he put into factors like protection from predators and the weather. Each element served a purpose in his design.

Both boys eagerly hunted for this months bug manipulatives in our sandbox and then arranged them in the hive. This was such a quick activity to put together, yet they worked together for quite some time and really enjoyed it.

X happily engaged in some letter work this week. He’s really drawn by the texture of the sand and the ability to “erase” with a simple shake. 

I appreciated the MGT suggeston of using our cookie cutters (we recieved a cookie cutter of the letters of the month with each shipment, and now we have the whole set!) in the sand. We’ve never done that before and it added another level of intrigue to this activity.

Perhaps the biggest hit of the week was painting with worms! MGT included rubber worms while I added coffee grinds to brown paint. The grinds really gave the paint a true dirt texture. After the project the worms were given a bath and have been used in various play through out the week.

Math was not forgotten in this week’s curriculum. This game was particularly enjoyed. X used the spinner and then followed the tunnels on the board to find the numbers. He recorded which numbers he’d visited by coloring in one of the dots in the numbers den. So many great skills here! Number recognition, fine motor work, prewriting skills and math concepts like making charts. I love how all the MGT games work on a variety of skills!

This weekend we’re focusing on caterpillars and butterflies! We’ve been using our Caterpillar and Butterfly days from Mother Goose Time along with a great kit from Ivy Kids. Check back tomorrow to see the fun we’ve had!

I received this month’s Mother Goose Time curriculum free of charge in exchange for sharing our experience and my opinions. All content and opinions are 100% mine and truly honest.

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Overview of Our Week

We’ve had such a busy week, but I wanted to pop in and share a little bit of it with you.

We’ve had unseasonably cool weather this week, it’s been feeling like actual spring! So of course we’ve spent as much time outside as we can! Between park dates, strawberry picking and zoo trips we still managed to get some school “work” done thanks to Mother Goose Time.

This month is all about bugs, which has certainly held my kids attention wonderfully! Bugs are such fascinating creatures! X worked really hard on creating an ant hill (complete with sand) and focused on making his ant colony as anatomically correct as possible. I loved seeing him focus and work so hard on this piece!

We also worked on a variety of math concepts using this awesome ant hill game. Counting, greater then and less then and even some adding was accomplished with this open ended game. My favorite activities are the ones that are so flexible. We can start out with some review and then move into more challenging work so seamlessly with many of our included games and activities.

Here’s an example on how we used the game to create an adding game. X would spin the wheel and deposit that many “ants” into the first hill. Then he’d do the same with the second. Finally we’d add the total number of ants together!

We had learned all about bees earlier in the week, so X was so excited when one decided to be his friend at the strawberry patch. The bee would just not leave him alone! We’d talked about how bees don’t try to hurt people, but will sting if they’re scared. This great base knowldege helped him be very careful of his bee friend and not scare it. Pollinators seem to be his favorite insects, so he loved seeing the bee do it’s job at the strawberry patch.

I received this month’s Mother Goose Time curriculum free of charge in exchange for sharing our experience and my opinions. All content and opinions are 100% mine and truly honest.

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Bugs!

We’re so excited that May’s Mother Goose Time theme is alllll about Bugs and Crawly Things! X was so excited to start!

So cute and so silly in their ladybug hats!

Day 1: Ladybug was a perfect day to have our friend S join us. The activities were easy to adjust for all 3 different age levels. 

We counted and added ladybug spots with this adorable game!

Then they got their wiggle and giggle on while listening to this month’s bug themed cd.

Even 22 month old Q was plenty busy making dots with the paint dotter bottle and worked hard on his headband.

I love how versatile this curriculum is and how easy it is to teach a mixed age group!

I received this month’s Mother Goose Time curriculum free of charge in exchange for sharing our experience and my opinions. All content and opinions are 100% mine and truly honest.

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Learning Through Art and Music

This week we wrapped up our Birds and Eggs theme from Mother Goose Time and it has been a blast. We learned about so many different kinds of birds after learning about their body parts. X enjoyed discussing what was different and what was the same between birds and humans. 

Here he is exploring all of the ways he could use the provided materials to build bird feet. He decided he wanted his feet to be able to stand up. This added a great sculptural opportunity and a chance to explore 3D art.

He brainstormed about construction and used great problem solving skills to create a chicken foot!

I loved how we focused on each part of a bird and then moved on to the different types.

Working with a similair topic gave X a great opportunity to focus artistically on the details of each different bird. I saw his comfort with their basic shape grow, allowing him to really observe what made them unique as well as experiment with the different materials MGT provided.

When we first started doing the Invitations to Create, X went through an experimental period. He would only spend a few minutes on the project, mostly just combining all the materials and making a “mess”. It was hard, then, for me to see what he was learning from these projects; but I trusted MGT and we stuck with them. I am so happy I did. His reasoning, planning and thinking skills have really blossomed under the open ended art opportunities. He really uses his creativity now and the focus he has to complete his design is awesome.

The Invitations to Create are so beneficial for younger kids too.

Sensory experience, fine motor work and focus building are all skills that littles work on too!

MGT also provides a huge variety of music and movement activities each month. The included monthly cd is a favorite for both of my children. Daily they turn on our cd player so they can dance and play to the variety of music. 

MGT also includes activities to build projects that can be used with the cd. From ribbon dancers to rhythm shakers we have really enjoyed these Make and Play items. I also use the cd to help get their wiggles out. Either before we start school or in the middle, moving their bodies helps them focus.  

Many of the songs include lyrics that make it easy to dance and move in theme. A favorite this month was the catchy Shake Your Tail Feathers which had my kids shaking their bums all over the house. Our whole family loved the Head, Wings, Tail and Feet which was a theme aligned rendition of Head, Shoulder, Knees and Toes. We listened to this while Dada was home for lunch one day and he taught the boys how to dance to it. Mother Goose Time builds skills and helps me teach, but it also helps my family create memories.


I received this month’s Mother Goose Time curriculum free of charge in exchange for sharing our experience and my opinions. All content and opinions are 100% mine and truly honest.

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Elevated Learning with Mother Goose Time

When you homeschool some days your kiddo (or yourself) are less then excited about the lessons and some days everything clicks and you have so much fun! Luckily MGT provides such a wide range of engaging activities that we have way more “click” days then not, but today was above and beyond.

X was so into learning about different kinds of bird feet! We had a great discussion on what different features on a birds feet could help them do. I loved the poster of different types of feet that came in our daily bag. X was able to study each pair of feet and made great conclusions on what those feet were good for. 

The supplies for today’s Invitation to Create were so great! X has nevery worked with wax sticks before; he really enjoyed them. He decided to create chicken feet!

He used the wax sticks and pieces of toothpicks for the nails! I love how the Invitations to Create have made him so much more creative in his thinking and problem solving. When we first started doing them he would explore, but ultimately just make a mess with all of the supplies. Now he really thinks about what he’s creating!

Next up was math. Can I just say, these links have been the most played with item in our house since the beginning of the month. Both boys absolutely LOVE them. X has been able to count to 10 since he was 2, but we always make sure to review the lower numbers each month. I start with the “easy” lower numbers to build his confidence before tackling the bigger numbers we’re really working on. 

Plus, he had SO MUCH FUN trying to pick up the links with his feet. I thought this was such a great activity. Any learning opportunity where X can use his body is a hit in this house!

Once he’d used his gross motor skills, we were ready to work on those bigger numbers. 18 and 28 were the focus. 

Finally we wrapped up with a fun and silly game. X built himself a nest next to a pond.

He even utilized our library books for this unit as rocks around his pond. Then he roled our beloved Pocket Cube and acted out the different ways birds use their feet. He loved this! He add us all in stitches with his creative bird interpretations!

After nap we’ll make some bird tracks in playdough and do the #8 pages in his journal.

Such a great day with Mother Goose Time!

I received this month’s Mother Goose Time curriculum free of charge in exchange for sharing our experience and my opinions. All content and opinions are 100% mine and truly honest.

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Birds with MGT

This month we are learning all about birds! X is so excited about this unit. He loves birds and is really looking forward to be able to identify more of them.

Both boys really enjoyed making nests and painting eggs.

They enjoyed the added challenge of using a pom pom held by a clothes pin instead of a brush. They really came out beautifully. The Pom pom created an awesome speckled texture that looked like the eggs in the picture!

We used the materials a little differently then intended. Instead of painting the egg, we used the outside as a stencil. The boys applied the paint and then we removed the white paper stencil. It worked perfectly!

X has really been loving the Journal activities these past 2 months. He’s also been very interested in learning his letters. So he loved stamping oval eggs on the pages and writing a capital E in each. I also love how convenient it is to keep the journals to look back on what we’ve done. It’s a great way to see his progress!

X loved creating letters with the feathers. He worked hard on this for quite some time. He’s such a tactile learner, I love how many projects there each month that really cater to how he learns best.

We’re only a week into our birds theme and we’ve already had so much fun! We can’t wait to see what the rest of the month will bring!!

I received this month’s Mother Goose Time curriculum free of charge in exchange for sharing our experience and my opinions. All content and opinions are 100% mine and truly honest.

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At the Pond with Mother Goose Time- Building Skills and Creating Appropriate Challenges for a Variety of Ages

We have been LOVING our At the Pond theme. X is so interested in creatures and plants, he has learned so much from this unit. I love how Mother Goose Time makes the themes accessible to a variety of ages. My 4 year old has learned the life cycle of a frog, about submergent plants, ecosystems, food chains and so much more. My 21 month old has learned to identify dragonflies, frogs, turtles and water striders. My 4 year old is working on phonics and learning all his letters as well as simple math. My 21 month old has started counting and pointing out letters. And this is not even including the fine motor development, artistic and creative expression and gross motor skills we work on with Mother Goose Time each month!

Here’s X working on a phonics game. Meanwhile Q was identifying the fish, frog and pig while saying “ribbit” and making the plastic frog jump. These activities are so well thought out. I’m so thankful I can do school with BOTH kids and have them both be learning and having fun.

This game was so cute! Both kids were drawn to the bright colors and cute racoon. This opened up a great dialogue for X and I about predators and how fish can use submergent plants to hide. I also appreciated the teaching prompts in my Teacher’s Guide- some days I am on point with our topic discussions, and some days I haven’t had quite enough coffee. Either way MGT provides awesome talking points and facts. I’ve found this month’s theme particularly rich with additional knowldege. 

X always looks forward to the puzzles. This month’s was a beautiful photo of cattails and a dragonfly. I love the fact that as the months have passed, the puzzles have gotten more challenging. This facilitates the progressive building of skills and makes sure the child is prepared AND challenged. This is so important with early learning. If things are too easy, they get bored. But if they’re too hard, it can get frusterating. Mother Goose Time provides the perfect balance between the two AND encourages developing skills over time.

This was by far the most challenging puzzle we’ve gotten from Mother Goose Time. It had more pieces then the others and the photo was a little less obvious. X was so proud when he completed it all on his own.

Our book for this month has beautiful photos and a variety of vocabulary building descriptive words. I love books like this. To make it even better it had a fact at the end about each creature featured. Many of the facts I didn’t even know before reading it!


I received this month’s Mother Goose Time curriculum free of charge in exchange for sharing our experience and my opinions. All content and opinions are 100% mine and truly honest.