Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Home For Preschool

Home For Preschool -

Tim and I decided that we would not be sending LittleA to pre-k this year. We opted to keep her home until next September when she will head off to Kindergarten. The reasons for this are numerous - but that is not what this post is about. This post is about the exciting "smith school" (as dubbed by LittleA) we are working on at home. No we are not handing out worksheets and homework. This plan is driven by the things that LittleA wants to know about. It is heavily created around books and exploring the world without necessarily leaving our house.

We hope to travel the globe through stories and "unknowingly" learn all kinds of good things as we go along. This idea was based upon the map reading mentioned by Jim Trealease's The Read-Aloud Handbook We did the ground work a week ago when we purchased a world map in the poster section of our local craft store. Their was a poster sale going on and I got the map for under $2. 
I trimmed off some of the sides so that it would fit when mounted to an old cork board we had laying around. I just used my rotary cutter and quilting ruler to cut nice even lines.
LittleA helped me to put the push pins in to secure the corners and edges. There is even a nice space left where we can tack up pictures and other fun things we find in our travels. We added our first pin into our home town and will take a look at where we are in comparison to the other pins we add. We hope to log each pin into a book so we can track our travels through the year. Hopefully we can find great books with ties to all corners of the planet. Any suggestions?
Last week to get things started we read Laurie Keller's (we LOVE her books - especially Arnie the Doughnut) Scrambled States of America - Talent Show. We got out our USA puzzle map (scrambled all the pieces) and tried to follow along with the states as they were introduced in the book.

First two states making the map.

To make it easier for LittleA to find the states as we came across them in the book we sorted them by puzzle piece color. That way I would show her the shape of the state in the book and if she had trouble locating the piece I would give her a clue "it is in the green pile"
the map beginning to fill in.
This was our favorite page. There were a few states who got together and impersonated other states - so we took the pieces and put them together and compared them to the original state. Quite clever of Ms. Keller to even notice this!

Even without a USA puzzle you could still do this same activity. Perhaps you have a felt set or even just a USA map printout.

Do you have any other books about the states that you love? Let me know we are always on the look out!

1 comment:

christina said...

I am so inspired by you Dayna!! Myra and I need to come visit you & A sometime. Happy "Back to School"! PS I'm reading books to Myra and she already follows along, we're off to a good start I think :)