Tag Archives: Preschool

Having a Blast with Birthdays

Literacy

One of our favorite things to do when the kids are learning about the letter B is talk about birthdays!  One story we really like is “The Secret Birthday Message” by Eric Carle.  In the story, the little boy has to follow the secret birthday message on a kind of scavenger hunt to find his birthday surprise!  As some added fun, we print copies of the message and hide pictures of the book around the room.  The children then get to follow the clues to find the surprise, just like the boy in the story!

Dramatic Play

In our dramatic play area, we set up a birthday party with pretend birthday cakes, party hats, paper party plates and cups, and balloons.  The kids love taking turn pretending it is their birthday and having a party!

Art

This year, I wanted to try something different at the art table for birthdays.  What I came up with were these fun three-dimensional birthday cakes.

They are made from upside down paper bowls.  To make the frosting, I mixed one part glue with one part shaving cream and then added a few drops of liquid watercolor.  This concoction dries thick and foamy, and really looks a lot like real frosting!  After spreading on the “frosting,” the kids decorated the cakes with foam shapes, candy sprinkles, and cut-up pieces of straws as candles.  Of course, you could use any collage materials you have on hand to decorate the cakes.  The kids really got into making these.  I almost felt like I was watching Cake Boss there for a while!

Happy About Angry Birds

It’s been a number of months since I’ve blogged.  My husband and I were busy buying a house -a beautiful 120 year old Victorian style farmhouse that’s everything I’ve ever wanted (might have to start a blog about it)- and the last semester at preschool got crazy busy for its own reasons, so blogging kind of fell by the wayside for me for a while.

The preschool is closed during the summer, and I keep myself busy nannying for my niece and nephews (ages 6, 10, and 13) so you will see some of the fun activities they’ve been doing show up here on this blog as well.

Many of the preschoolers -as well as my nephew- have been obsessed with Angry Birds lately.  It’s a pretty good, simple game, too, as far as video games go.  There is a lot of physics going on with figuring out the projectiles and the speed and everything.  Plus there’s sling shots and destroying/knocking things down- of course kids love it!

So, how much more fun and educational would it be if kids could play Angry Birds in real life?  Wouldn’t it be great if they could have a favorite game and hands-on science all rolled into one?  That was our thought when we started brainstorming at preschool how we could make this happen.  We were so excited when our plans finally came to fruition.

Here’s what we did:

Our wonderful preschool director sewed little Angry Bird bean bags in three different styles and weights- red birds being the lightest, yellow birds being a  medium weight, and black bomb birds being the heaviest.

We used exercise bands for the sling shots.  We found them on sale in the Target dollar section (yes, less than a dollar each).  We tied on a little piece of cardboard to nest the birds in and wrapped the ends of the band around the legs of an upside-down chair. Voila, slingshot!

We used foam blocks to build structures and taped pictures of piggies to small stacks of Legos.

The kids spent a lot of time building structures, placing pigs, and taking turns trying to knock them down by slinging birds at them.  This was so much fun.  One of my classes in particular really enjoyed this.   One boy even asked me if we could shut off a bank of lights so they could play Angry Birds Space!

    

Last fall, I saw a wonderful backyard Angry Birds game from Simply Styled Home on Pinterest.  I’ve been waiting all year to make it happen.  Now, with our new house, we had the perfect opportunity since we now have our own backyard and plenty of moving boxes to build with!

I bought some balls and drew Angry Birds faces on them with Sharpie markers.  I didn’t make the fancy sling shot like the one at Simply Styled Home, but instead bought a three-person water balloon sling shot (once again) from the Target dollar section.

Yes, those are adults on lawn chairs holding the ends of the slingshot!

We built with boxes, and we tried to use balloons as pigs, but we had trouble getting them to inflate or stay inflated.  But it was still fun knocking down boxes!  Great times!

  

 

“N” the Newspaper

This is an activity we did at the writing table when the kids were learning about the letter N.  We put out newspapers, magnifying glasses, and markers and challenged the children to find as many n’s  as they could-using the magnifying glasses for added fun- and circle or highlight them.