Wednesday, September 27, 2017

ikea goodness

I picked these little cups up at IKEA about five years ago. They are very inexpensive and can be used in a bunch of different ways. One year, we reserved them for our water cups. They are super small but I had a bunch of kiddos that just refused to drink water...until we brought down our special cups...then everyone had to take a turn or two, or three...After a few years, the cups have made their way to our outside area, They are used to create milkshakes, cupcakes, tea, and more. They are filled with sand, water beads, water, soap suds, leaves, you name it. I need ot make my way to Ikea again for another set or two. We love them!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

and then we painted with cars...

Sometimes we set this up as an invitation to paint, sometimes we do it as a group. This time, we set it up as a group and used our primary colors to see if mixing would happen. We pulled all of the chairs away from the table and gave each kiddo a piece of paper that they began with and carried with them as they moved around the table to the next tray of paint. There is a lot of language when we do this as the children laugh and communicate what the cars are doing on their paper. I love our group projects, I feel they serve a position in our classroom community. That said, we do not always do large group projects like this. In the beginning of the year we do more of them to help guide the children in how to use the materials. Once the children begin to engage with the materials on their own, we step back and watch to see where we can next guide their creativity.

big blocks

I love when I discover towers like this in the block area. These lovely blocks are from Community Playthings and are worth every penny. They are strong and super sturdy and can be stoon on, slid down, stacked up, and not. Sometimes the nooks become houses for our dinosaurs, sometimes the children like to pass items to ech other through them. They can also be put together to create a large platform for the children to perform on. So many ways to be played with, the best is how open-ended they are.

Friday, September 22, 2017

I was asked to guard them...

At the beginning of the school year, the children latch onto the stilts as objects for keeping. They gather them up in pairs or more and create their own games and variations of play with them. At some point in the middle of the year, they progress to balancing and standing on them, and by the end of the year, they are walking on them. I love the time of year when they place such a high level of importance to the stilts that they need guardng.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

mixing paint...tinting things up

When it comes to paint, for most kiddos, the more there is, the happier they are. We like to use paper plates for color mixing as they are both inexpensive and sturdy enough to hold the massive globs of paint the kiddos add to them. Here, we've given a short lesson on tints...adding white to other colors...we've given the kiddos paint palettes with primary colors (there was a discussion as to which blue we should use) and white, and then they were let loose to mix it all up!

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

decorating the castle....

When we really wanted the giant Outlast blocks from Community Playthings, but did not have the budget for them, we bought crates instead. Crates are great for building a block happy community. They are lightweight and stackable and provide a multitude of opprtunities for the children to come together with their imaginations and problem solving skills. Yay crates!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

being sneaky...

Sometimes our play yard toys get super ickified....the easiest way for them to get less ickified is to add soap to the water table...we like to use either Dawn or Mrs. Meyers....the kiddos just like the suds...