Tot School

Since Tate was about 18 months old I started making plans to do a little educational activity with him every day. I mapped out my week and figured out what time of day would be best to dedicate to “learning time”.  I assigned each day a different subject. I spent hours looking on Pinterest for good ideas and looked up Pre-K standards to make sure I was teaching the right things. After hours and hours of researching and planning and finding ideas, I was ready. I had all that I needed to teach Tate.
But it never happened. Story of my life.
Does any one else do this? Plan and plan and make an awesome goal but then never follow through? I feel like that’s what my life as a mom has been whether it be a recipe I SWORE I was going to make or a craft I bought supplies for but never found the time to do. I am constantly finding or coming up with ideas but then for one reason or another they just don’t happen. Because I’m cool like that.

Well, I have made a great new friend out here in CT and we found out a couple months or so ago that we both had the same goal to teach our boys a little every day.  When she asked if we wanted to meet up a couple times a week and teach them together I was SO excited. Doing things like this with other people makes it a lot easier to actually follow through.

I hope to post our ideas on here to share with others. Any time it’s my turn to teach, it will basically be something you could find for yourself online. I’ve decided I’m not good at very many things, but I am good at copying people. I know that’s not a real talent but it’s all I’ve got.

Copycat Pride!

Of course when it is Karli’s lessons they will be fabulous and cute and mostly her own ideas because she is actually creative and comes up with things in her own brilliant mind. I do know she loves Pinterest, but I also know she’s got LOADS of talent. I’m excited to see what fun things she comes up with for the boys!

I was in charge of our first “school” play date and since it was kind of an introductory lesson, I decided to do a lesson revolving around Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Karli’s son is just starting to learn the letters and Tate has been working on letter sounds; I figured this was the perfect book to kick things off. After we read the book once, I got out a cookie sheet with a tree taped to it (a very sad imitation of the coconut tree – thankfully the boys didn’t care) and some magnetic letters and modeled how to use the items while I read it a second time.

Then I gave the boys their own cookie sheets and they used their magnetic letters to act out the story while I read the book again. They loved the part when they got to bang their cookie sheets against the floor to make the letters fall off.

We cleaned up the magnetic letters and sang the ABCs while I laid ABC flash cards on the ground (I love me some effective transitions!). We used one bag of magnetic letters and the boys took turns picking out a letter and matching it to the correct flash card. It was a very laid back activity and if one boy finished before the other they would just pick another letter and keep going – no need to wait for one to finish before the other could take another turn. It was also very easy to adapt – Karli helped Chase while teaching the name of each letter and I talked to Tate about the letter sounds as he searched for the match.

Finally, we ended by coloring a Chicka Chicka Boom Boom coloring page, which also acted as an informal assessment. While they colored, we would ask the boys to identify the letters and were able to gauge what they already know and what they need to work on. I also printed out a separate paper with lowercase letters for Tate since that’s also something I want to work on with him. He mixed up his b and d, p and q, and didn’t know what the “r” was – now I have a better idea of what to work on!

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