Friday, February 17, 2012

lurking in the shadows

We were playing with Dinos the other day, when D. discovered that if he put an object under the lampshade, with the light on it would create a shadow/profile of what he was holding.  He ran and got me and asked me to play a game with him.  I jumped on the chance to talk to him about light, and a bit about  how shadows are caused.  Due to his love of the solar system, we were able to also delve into a discussion about eclipses just a little bit, too!
He was having so much fun "hiding" the figurine for me, and have me "guess" which dinosaur was being shy... 
It is a simple, quick little fun game that can really help a child learn about shadows, profiles, light and opacity vs. transparency.  Go on... guess and see if  YOU can guess what dinosaur is lurking in the shadows...


Saturday, February 11, 2012

Octonaut Obsession- part 1

Well, I don't know about your little ones, but my little one is absolutely, head over heals for the Octonauts on Disney.  He has had obsessions before... dinosaurs, trains, cars, the solar system, well, now, it is all about the Ocean and all that dwells beneath!  I'm a science teacher at heart, so I love when his interests fall in line with mine!
  The Ocotnauts is a Disney UK program, and it has recently been picked up in the USA.  It comes on 11:30E.  I like this show because it really is educational.  My son can watch an episode and truly pick up facts, but better than that, it has really sparked his desire to learn more about the ocean.  So, we cannot seem to find the toys, and he really wants to "play" Octonauts, so we have created our own (pretty pathetic, i must warn) Octopod.
Here is a picture of "the" Octopod, as it is on the show (no source, sorry, I just googled "octopod") 

   We used tupperware, orange construction paper, paper towel rolls, and packing tape.  Seriously, I was not picky about the looks of this thing, and it was TOTALLY THROWN TOGETHER.  I had no real "planning" time, so, she's pretty shabby.  I might attempt to do something better if the prices don't come down on them.  I may work on it a bit more, so their might be a "part two" to this post, if I get a creative burst!
 I know... kinda lame.  Now that I see the pictures, I'm a bit ashamed of it, and might have to get working on it again.  :)
 He uses his "little people" and his sea animal figurines to play out the episodes he has seen.
  So, here is what he ended up with... its better than nothing, right?!
~ Have a good one!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Leaping Letters!

Sorry for the lag in posts... AGAIN... my new little one is giving me quite the time, and i spend most of my days holding her, which makes most things nearly impossible.  We are kind of in a  dirty-laundry-dirty-dishes-house-and-mommy-are-a-wreck sort of state around here.  She has learned to spit out her reflux medication and has chronic GI issues.  We finally went to the GI specialist, who confirmed all we thought- one of those kids with a tough system...
ANYWAY... I got them both outside recently (its been in the high 60s, low 70s some days) and we used sidewalk chalk to mix up our ABCs.  My son is in the early reading stage and is doing great with 3 letter words, and is ready to step it up a bit.  For this game, I would say a word "log" and he would find each letter and hop on it, spelling the word.  After he landed on the third letter he would spell the whole word aloud.  Simple, Quick, Outside and EFFECTIVE.

adapt:  for those learning to recgonize ABCs, simply call out the letter
           for those learning letter sounds, simply make the sound
           for those learning sentence structure, you could write out certain punctuation marks, say a sentence and have them jump to the appropriate mark that fits.
Have fun!