Love, Joleen: Tot School: The Letter "B" + BLUE Day

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Tot School: The Letter "B" + BLUE Day

So, normally I would do one post to recap our weekly Tot School theme. This week is different because we're doing the Letter "B" and our main theme is "Bugs", but we had one day completely dedicated to the color BLUE! I thought I would share our activities and then post our bug activities separately at the end of the week.

"Blue Day" was Tuesday and we did a lot! We honestly did enough projects to last an entire week but I would have been thrilled just to do one. The way Tot School has been working for us is that I have the activities ready and if he's feeling up to a "project" then we do one. I never push him. Learning should be fun for him and nothing about Tot School should be stressful for either of us.

That being said, Benjamin woke up Tuesday, thrilled about life and ready to go! I started the day by going over to his bulletin board, where I have a giant "B" pinned and several "B/b" sight words along with corresponding photos. Then I told him that "B is for blue" and today would be "Blue Day"! We I picked out his clothes (blue, of course!) and asked him if he wanted to wear his Secret Pocket Cape [c/o North American Bear Co.]. Of course, several minutes of soaring and flying ensued. Toddler life is magical, isn't it?
After Benjamin was tired from his excursions around the apartment, we settled down for our first blue activity -- the sensory bin! I've seen so many amazing sensory bin ideas on Pinterest, [and have pinned several on my Tot School board] but this was our very first. I picked up this tub for a few dollars and several bags of Navy beans [at $0.57 each] from Family Dollar. Then, I went around the apartment, collecting blue toys and trinkets to "hide" in it. I had a blue tray and bowls for him to place his found items in. Initially he set items on the rug and a few beans in the bowls, but he caught on to the "rules" quickly. This was our most successful activity of the day and he's done it several times since. I'm looking forward to filling the tub with different items in the future!
"Dot-a-dot Uppercase Letters"
These were our two "books of the day", both of which we already owned. I'm just started to incorporate some of Benjamin's non-board book collection, so it was our first time reading My Blue Boat by Chris L. Demarest. It's a sweet, easy reader, with beautiful watercolor illustrations. I picked it up last year for less than a quarter at our Friends of the Library Bookstore. [Sidenote- when I linked to Amazon I saw that used this book's listings start at over $40. Major score!]
Small Bunny's Blue Blanket by Feeney Tatyana

If you're following me on Instagram, you saw that our big project last weekend was to paint and assemble Benjamin's new toddler bed. We took full advantage of our trip to the paint section of the home improvement store, to acquire paint chips for various Tot School projects. I cut a couple blue strips up for some gluing practice in Benjamin's art journal. He enjoyed this activity, with minimal direction from me.

At some point in the day, he requested a bath and pajamas (my kinda kid), hence the outfit change in the rest of the photos...
Just like last week with the Letter "A", I created a giant "flashcard" for our letter of the week. You can use a template, like these Block Letters from The Measured Mom. I just freehand cut mine from colored paper and adhere it to a white sheet. We keep these on the bulletin all week to refer to and bring it down for the button activity. I'm still so stoked about the giant bag of buttons I found on clearance at Joann's for $0.99. It's so easy to separate the colors and if you don't want to or aren't working on a color series, you have an entire rainbow to work with!
These faces?! I die!! I mean. Every. Single. Time! Bwahahaha! Ok, this activity was a total fail. He's never worked with clothespins before. Not only did he not understand the concept very well, he couldn't remember which side to push, AND I used too small of clothespins. Haha, oy! He broke the first one, straight off. We laughed so hard and then I put it away for some other time.
This last activity was completely random and spur of the moment. Benjamin helped me make lunch and hard-boil eggs. Instead of throwing the container away, I cut the two pieces apart, and after thoroughly washing, they were perfect for sorting pom poms! I counted outloud while Benjamin put one in each spot. Instant math activity.
Blue Day was an absolute blast. It has me looking forward to celebrating and learning about other colors! I hope you liked our activities. I'd love to hear your ideas for future projects/activities!

Linking up this week at the Tot School Gathering Place on 1+1+1=1.

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