Saturday, November 5, 2011

Tot School: T is for Trains

Tot School
Jonathan is 34 months
Grace is 14.5 months


We've been continuing with our weekly Bible stories and this week we learned about King Josiah. We played games, sang songs and did crafts along with our story. Check in on Wednesday for our Kids in the Word post to see what we've been doing!

Reading & Language Arts 

This week, we focused a lot on trains. Jonathan loves his trains and his train table and even Grace has a lot of fun with them. We've been reading lots of books about trains. Here are some favorites:

Jonathan has a bunch of Kumon workbooks and we recently started working on his tracing book. He's really enjoyed tracing lines on some of the printables that Carisa does over at 1+1+1=1 so I thought this book might be of interest to him. We started doing one worksheet a day and he always asks for more. His pencil grip still needs a lot of work, but he's been having fun with it. You can check out some of his lines here:

Psst. You can also download some tracing worksheets over at SchoolSparks.


We did a little finger painting with a friend this week and we also pulled out the play dough:

We also did a bit of a picture study, looking at a painting by James Clarke Hook called Blackberry Picking:

We talked about what the people in the picture were doing and compared it to our experience of going to an apple orchard. I got the idea from Language Lessons for Little Ones by Sandi Queen.

Math & Science 

We talked about friction this week after reading about how trains travel on tracks to reduce the amount of friction. To do a simple experiment, we got out some of Jonathan's trains and attempted to roll them on the hardwood floor and then compared how they rolled on a rug. We talked about which trains went the farthest.

We also did a bit of a nature walk and went to the park this week. As we walked we talked about the different colors of leaves we found and tried to find red, orange and yellow leaves. When we got home, we did leaf rubbings and then pressed the leaves between two pieces of contact paper:

Sensory Play 

We walked through leaves and talked about the crunching sound they made. We also pulled out our fall sensory bin and Grace had fun playing with the silk leaves:

Motor Skills 

I threw some balls in our pack & play and this was a great way for the kids to get some energy out:

But the biggest news is Grace is finally standing on her own:

and she's taken three steps. So maybe we'll have a walker soon!

Pretend Play 

Of course, we played with our trains a lot:

and Grace has been enjoying her tea set from Nana:

Practical Life 

We've worked on learning how to get dressed-- this week we've been trying to do snappers:

and as far as potty training... ugh. Jonathan did so well with potty training and initiating going to the bathroom. Then, he just wasn't interested. We started having accidents and he told me he didn't want to stop what he was doing and go potty. So I'd love to hear advice-- what do I do? It isn't that he can't go potty but that he won't. He'll still go if I initiate and he wants to earn stars and get matchbox cars. But he won't stop what he's doing and tell me. Should I move him back to diapers? Keep pressing forward? It's tiring and frustrating to boot!

So, that's been our week. We're all a little under the weather this weekend, so I hope that we'll be up for some of the activities I hope to do next week. Thanks for stopping by!

Linking up to:

Tot School @ 1+1+1=1
Link n' Learn @ No Time for Flashcards
Sunday Showcase @ Mom to 2 Posh Little Divas & Classified Mom
Read Explore Learn @ J Daniel4's Mom
Preschool Corner @ Homeschool Creations
For the Kids Fridays @ Sun Scholars


Beth ( said...

We are big train fans at our house & we love the book Freight train too!! Love the ball bit you made =-) I wanted to invite you to come link up at TGIF Linky Party -
Beth =-)

Happyscrapper42 said...

We love trains and I am looking forward to our T week. This is our second week of tot school and I am not planning to do T until after the new year. Loved the friction idea. As for potty training as you know there are no easy/ or right answers. My parent coach would say he isn't really ready and don't push him, but since you are already out of the diapers (or so it sounds) I'd persevere and not go back to diapers unless you really just want to give up for now. It would be confusing for him for you to go back and forth between diapers and underwear.- Just my two cents.

Jenny said...

Great week! They look like they are having so much fun with the balls in the pack 'n play!

I don't really have advice on potty training. I'm sort of in the same boat. My little boy will go potty if I take him, but has never come over and told me he needed to go, even though I've asked him to.

Erin said...

Your train week looks awesome!! I'd never thought to approach friction as such a young age, but it makes so much sense!

As for potty training...I'm convinced there is not wrong way. With my oldest I attempted to PT multiple times, and we ended up going back to diapers more than once. He pretty much PTed himself just before he turned 3. One day no interest, the next day he was ready! My 2nd son we did the 3 day method shortly after he turned 2. I highly recommend this ebook
Totally worth the $$!! And if you run into issues you can email the help desk and get a personalized answer! It did take much longer than 3 days for my son, but he's potty trained!

Lulu said...

Balls in the pack and play! Genius! No need to buy a ball tent for the kids.

My older son is really into trains now- a fun day out for him is going for a walk in the stroller and seeing the trains go past over and over again {we live less than 2km from the train station}. He is a cheap date!!

I have decided to hold off on potty training my oldest {now 22 months} because we have two international flights in March & April and with my other child I just do not know how I would manage to get him into the plane toilet by myself carrying my younger one as well. He has shown no interest yet anyway. Then we move into our new the plan is to start next April when we move into our new house and have finished our travel {well until November}...I hope you find something that works for you! Would be interesting to see a post once he is fully trained on how you did it and what worked for you guys.

Aimee from Classified: Mom said...

Great round up of ideas! Looks like fun ;-) Thank you for sharing your ideas with us on The Sunday Showcase

Shonda said...

What a wonderful time you are having. I wish I could plan as well as you! No advice on the PT because we are getting ready to start! I keep telling Shrade that pretty soon he won't be wearing diapers and he will have to sit on the toilet instead. He's already been doing #1 when I take him, but of course he never asks. I'm worried about #2.

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