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In Montessori schools there is a great emphasis on independence. Since we have been doing a winter theme in our schoolroom this month, I thought that I would make a winter dressing basket for Pup. This will allow her to practice putting on mittens, hats, scarves, etc. I had the idea a couple weeks ago, and I finally got it together today (I kept forgetting!). The basket has a bunch of things in it:
Pup was so excited about it that it never made it to the schoolroom before she was in it! 🙂 Bunny soon joined her and they spent a good part of the morning in winter gear!
The other inspiration for this was the few inches of snow that we got last night! (I know that its not much for around here this time of year, but the girls were excited). So after a little work this morning we headed out to the park for some sledding! Bunny was so excited I thought she was going to explode! Pup was not real thrilled with the idea of snow pants or the boots. We were there early enough that there wasn’t many people on the hill. Bunny wanted to go down right away!
I was SO proud of her. She was proud of herself! So today was a great day for Independence! Pup learned to put her own hat on , and Bunny went sledding down the hill alone! Hurray for Independence!
Today we woke up to a tiny bit of snow! My first thought was what can we do for fun inside today? Well….after much thought, a ton of grouchy moments with the girls, I decided that maybe we should go outside and get some fresh air! I read “Stranger in the Woods” and “The First Snow in the Woods” by Carl R. Sams III. for circle time. Then my dear hubby suggested we go out to the Wildlife Refuge. So off we went! When we got there the snow had picked up again, so we walked out in the woods with the snowing falling all around us (ok it was blowing and I was freezing, but it was still fun!). We saw a rabbit (too fast for the camera) and we found some tracks from different animals (not being a wildlife person I have no idea what they are). I was hoping to see more things that were in the books that I might be able to identify, but, hey at least there was a rabbit! (I guess I need a wildlife tracking books.) It turned out to be a lot of fun even though it was freezing….and I got some good pics! 🙂
Also, as promised, I am posting pics of my first attempts of needle felting! I really think its fun, but I do need to practice! I am happy with how things turned out!
I also needle felted a little something for Bunny for her birthday, but I am not posting pics yet cause she loves to scroll through the blog! 🙂 Since Bunny did come down with a slight fever this evening, we’ll see if there is any schooling tomorrow!
I have a few minutes to update you on our crafty, schooly fun while Pup is napping, and Bunny is working with her number rods. Over the past two days we have done some fun things! Yesterday we made some recycled crayons.
The idea came from Counting Coconuts.:
http://countingcoconuts.blogspot.com/2009/10/recycled-crayons.html It started with peeling a million crayons which turned out to be a really painful and unpleasant experience (at least for me, Bunny said she missed peeling crayons after it was all done!).
The crayons were some old ones that I had, and I think that they were a little warm, so the wrapper did not peel off without some serious nail action.
After we peeled them though, we put them into some cheap muffin tins I picked up at the Dollar Store. Now we just needed to melt them. To do that we put the over at 350 degrees and after it got up to temp. we turned the over off and put the muffin trays in. After about 10 min everything was melted! Super simple. The hard part for Bunny was waiting for them to cool enough to get out! We put them in the freezer to speed things up! 🙂 When they were done we carefully popped them out and got to work!
They are perfect for doing rubbings! The girls tried them out on our sandpaper numbers. I think we will use them alot!
Another success of yesterday was that Bunny worked really hard on her beginning word sounds! I got her a basket of her small animals and the sandpaper letters. She got the idea right away and picked out the correct letter for each of the beginning sounds! I was so proud of her! It was one of those “maybe this is working out” moments! I guess that there is some truth to the Montessori order of ‘real objects first them pictures’ because I have tried to used printed pictures, but it didnt work out! After she finished the basket, she made a road of letters (all of them lined up across the room) and pretend that they were pens at the zoo and she had to put all the animals in their correct pens (by the beginning sounds of their names of course). She played this for a while! So needless to say I will do this again. Next time I think I will use kitchen items, then maybe colors, then bathroom things….the possibilities are endless!
Today we tried wet felting. I have been wanting to try felting for some time now, and yesterday I got my order from Joann Fabrics! (2 days after Christmas I used up the gift card I got on all the supplies! I was SO excited!) I found this idea on the blog The Magic Onions:
She made wet felted stones and she made an adorable wet felted ball. We tried both. I can say that after a good amount of frustration that this seems to be something that need a bit of practice to get the idea of. Bunny loved the idea and wanted to help, and since the word ball was mentioned, Pup wanted in on it too! 🙂
We got our wool roving out and got to work, but the shrinking takes longer them I thought, and the girls wanted much fast results! We did finally get some to work and they turned out pretty well. I will try it again, but maybe on my own. Tonight I will be needle felting some of my first projects and I will post on those later! Wish me luck!
This idea I found on a blog ( I cant remember which one…sorry). They suggested playing snow in the house! We tried it 2 weeks ago when we got a little snow and it was too cold to go outside (it was -15 wind chill). The girls loved it! We did it in the kitchen and I had plenty of towels on hand! I suggest you try it! They really got a chance to explore the snow and see the different textures as it got warmer and started to melt!
And finally, here is one our first attempts at a sensory tub. I need to work on this. Inside of it is:
Cotton Balls (snow)
Peppermint Sent jar
Cinnamon Sent Jar
Almond Sent Jar
Spoon for scooping “snow”
Jar of “ice crystals”
Box for open and close work
Wooden twig Reindeer that Pup LOVES