Sunday, June 22, 2014

Little Guy is 3!

Today Little Guy turns 3!  I can't believe it!  Everyone always says that kids grow up so fast, but I never appreciated how fast that was until I had my own child.

I am amazed at how much he has grown over the last year.  Here are some reflections (for him) on how he has changed.

In the past year, you have learned:
  • so many new words!  Your language is amazing!
  • how to recognize your name.
  • how to jump.
  • how to ride your balance bike.
  • how to pedal your tricycle.
  • many letters.
  • how to put on your own shoes (although not always on the correct feet).
  • how to sing songs! You can sing entire songs all on your own! 

You are:
  • nurturing to dolls and other children, wanting to comfort and take care of them.
  • funny, laughing at your own jokes.  You tell me "I'm a funny guy."
  • a cuddler, still cuddling when you are hurt or scared.
  • curious, always asking questions.
  • imaginative! You have a wonderful imagination!  Whether its playing with your Little People, trains, cars, or even riding your bike (which you call your motorcycle), you are imagining what the toys are doing, making up voices for them, and creating new situations!

You like:
  • construction vehicles, and always point out when we go past them.
  • trains, and wearing your train conductor costume.
  • dinosaurs, and love to see all of them at the zoo.
  • Little People, and playing with them, including naming each person and animal.
  • to sing!  Your favorite songs are "Mary Had a Little Lamb" and "Freres Jaques."

You no longer:
  • sleep in a crib!  Its a big boy bed for you!
  • wear diapers!  You know how to go potty on the big potty.

The day we met you and welcomed you to our family!
 I love you!  Happy Birthday, Little Guy!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Tot School- A Reflection

Last week Little Guy participated in VBS at the church we attend.  I was so glad that he was able to participate this year, and he really seemed to enjoy it!  I love that he had an opportunity to learn more about God and His love for us, and a great extra benefit is the Little Guy gets some time away from mama.  I love being with him, but I think its great for him to have chances to be independent.  I think he learned and was stimulated by so many things!  After we would get home each day, we would eat lunch and he would play for a few minutes before telling me he was ready for his nap!

All that to say that we were not able to do Tot School last week.

So I thought I would take the time to reflect on our Tot School over the past year.  We "officially" started Tot School last September, when Little Guy was about 26 months old (he turns 3 on Wednesday!).  We started Tot School with learning about colors.  It was so fun to work with him on designated activities, unified by a theme!  Here are some of my favorite pictures!
After learning about our colors, we moved on to seasonal themes.  Since it was fall, we learned about farms and pumpkins. With our farm unit, we used our first Tot Pack.  Our pumpkin theme was the first time I tried to put together Tot Trays.
 Continuing with seasonal themes, we learned about fall, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  It was during fall and Christmas that we did some of my favorite activities.  I really liked the toilet paper roll wreath we made by weaving ribbons and the snake made from the wooden wheels. Our beaded turkey was pretty cute, too!
 One of my (and Little Guy's, too) was spooning the bells at Christmas.  This was such a simple yet fun activity!
 After the new year, we transitioned to a letter of the week.  We are not doing letters in any particular order, but making them work for us seasonally or thematically.  We have now done 20 letters (!) and just have  few more to finish up!  Although Little Guy cannot name all the letters we have worked on, he can name many.  Here's a snapshot of what we have worked on!  (I plan on doing an ABC wrap up post when we have finished all the letters.)
 Its amazing to me how much Little Guy has changed since we started Tot School!  This is a journey that I am so glad we are on!

Thanks for stopping by today!  I hope your Tot School journey is just as fun!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Tot School- L is for Legos

Hello again!  My one week break from Tot School turned into two, but I am glad to back!  Little Guy, Daddy, and I enjoyed some time with Grandma and Granddaddy A. for one week, then needed a week to catch up on…life!  Even though we were not doing specific tot school activities, we were still reading to Little Guy, working on puzzles, and figuring things out.  I am glad to be back into our routine, though!  Last week we resumed with L is for Legos!  Little Guy is 35 months old.
L is for Lego
The favorite activity (by FAR) this week was a life skill.  I took a cookie sheet and taped a small rectangle on it (I used painters tape so it would come off easily when we were done with this activity).  I spilled a small cup of beans onto the tray and Little Guy needed to use a hand broom to sweep them all into the rectangle.  Once the beans were all in the rectangle, I helped him sweep them into the dustpan.  Little Guy completed this activity everyday, and sometimes did it two or three times in one morning.  This is such a useful skill.  I was pleased to see how much better he got as the week went on, using the dustpan by himself by the end of the week.

Another favorite for the week was pushing pushpins into the letter L.  I saw this idea on Preschool Creations.  I simply drew a capital L on a piece of paper and put 3 layers of cardboard behind it.  Little Guy’s job was to push he pins into the lines.  He really enjoyed this activity as well.  It was nice that he could re-do it by simply pulling out all the pushpins.

The next activity was simple to put together, but was great for fine motor skills.  I used some of the bath tub mats that have suction cups on the bottom and glass beads (I really wanted to use marbles, but I don’t have any).  Little Guy had to put one glass bead on each suction cup.  It did not take him very long to complete, but was good for him to do.  This not only practices fine motor skills (picking up the beads and setting them on certain spot), but it is also great one-to-one correspondence practice.
The last two activities were the Lego activities, and these were the two that Little Guy did the least.  The first one was filling an “L” shape with Legos.  I had laid them out and traced them to get the correct shape.  Little Guy just had to use the Legos to fill it in.  He did complete this a few times during the week.

This last activity was one that I had to make Little Guy do.  I had cut an L out of a cereal box.  My intent was that we could paint it one day, then use a Lego to stamp it another day.  Well, by Friday Little Guy still had not chosen to do this activity, so I just had him stamp the L with the Lego. 

A bonus activity we did was this shape puzzle from Plan Toys.  We borrowed it from our local library.  Little Guy completed it several times.  We have it for one more week, so I hope to use it again next week!
 Hope things are going well in your tot school!

Follow Stacy's board Alphabet- L on Pinterest.

We linked up to the Tot School Gathering Place at 1+1+1=1!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Hiking, fish, and the a 2 year old

Little Guy really likes using his camera.  He likes to take pictures of everyday things, but this month he was also able to take it on three bigger outings.

On Mother's Day, he went on a hike with Daddy (I went for a long run and had some extra time to myself while they were gone!).

We took a trip to the local botanical gardens (he really likes the koi pond!).

During our most recent trip to the zoo, they were shearing the sheep in the zoo farm.  Also, the butterfly exhibit opened for the summer.

 I love seeing the world from his perspective!