Monday, May 21, 2012

We learned about "condiments" this week when we had a Toast Bar!  The children were true gourmands as they chose or combined the choices of spreads for their toast in the middle of the week.

It was fun to push down the button on the toaster and watch the wires inside get red, letting us know the bread was toasting - it smelled yummy!  

Some of us chose just one spread . . .

and then saw their friends using all three, that's when we starting saying "pass the jam, please!"

Lilya made sort of an open-faced pbj!

She thoroughly enjoyed it!

And Zoe preferred hers plain!

We did some water coloring with our new friend Maura in T/Th.  Welcome Maura!

It's not watercoloring until you make a big wet hole in the paper!

We also experimented with bubble painting.  Making our lips into a blowing face and blowing out, (rather than in) helps the children develop various sounds as their speech matures.

This activity turned  very tactile for Lilya and Jane as they made the bubbles all sudsy!

We read an easy reader this week called, Under the Sky.  We took turns "reading" (mostly memorization, but good start!) to each other.

We had a little lesson on how to draw flowers to keep up our burgeoning drawing skills.

We sorted our "gingerbread" people...

Kaden and Karsten preferred to stack the "gingerbread" people.

We enjoyed the new stroller that friends gave Jill.

This led to taking better care of the babies.  Below, we give one a bath . . .

This then led to getting the doctor kit out and helping all the sick babies.

Let me introduce doctors Maura, Elliott and Zoe!

We had lots of help filling up the big bucket to take outside for water play.

And, the T/Th group enjoyed going on a bear hunt!  Elliott was so excited he had to get in line first!

I think I see one over there!  He's a friendly bear.

Outside we had a lot of pouring, spilling and funneling.

Zoe made a great rock and stick sculpture.

We are all doing really great at putting on our own shoes!

But still might need a little help with our shirts (we all had to change after getting wet in the water outside).

We also played with pink, soap dough - its very stretchy!

The year has gone so fast!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Who Wants Lemonade?!

In true Reggio fashion, the teacher learned and discovered along with the children this week!  I have made lemonade with real lemons with many, many children, but never quite so young.  Some of your children DID NOT want to get STICKY, others are still developing the hand strength to squeeze a lemon, which challenged me to find some new ways to do this (see below!).  But nothing shocked me more with our sweet group than their sheer ability to be able to drink 1 whole lemon's sour, sour juice STRAIGHT with no sugar added!  Those are some fresh taste buds!

I sliced the lemons in a variety of ways to help the children squeeze them (slices, quarters, halves. . .)

We also figured out if we roughed up the lemons a little bit before squeezing them they might be easier to squeeze (Jill learned this from shows on the Food Network).

We eventually, actually, tried stepping on the lemons to get juice out - this worked for the kids who did not what to get sticky!  And in all humility, the process we went through and figuring things out is such a great exercise for the children - it mirrors many real-life processes involved in science and everyday scenarios where people have to solve a problem.

We used a flour sifter to strain the seeds . . .

Squeezing all those lemons is A LOT of work!

After reading the Pinkalicious book about her pink lemonade, we decided to add raspberries to our lemonade!


We smooshed the raspberries in ziplocks using a block.

This is how much some of our effort yielded.

Zoe did a great job painting our sign!

Then came the mixing and tasting . . .

and  making it pink!

We were SO excited to SELL our lemonade!  Some of us wanted to run up and down the hall and check to see if  our moms and nannys and grand parents were coming around the corner and looking thirsty!  Dave in the church office bought several cups.

We sold the lemonade for 1 cent per cup, so I had the children investigate all sorts of coin money so they could begin to identify pennies.

Our many lemons (thank you parents for bringing them in!) yielded lots of seeds so we decided to try to plant them.

Finally, customers!

You all should be so proud, as this week's activity represents the children's ability to partake in a process throughout several days, connecting the meaning and being excited about the outcome.  They were very authentically invested.  They did a real thing - made yummy lemonade - with 2 fruits!  They made decisions, worked together, solved problems and overcame things they thought they didn't want to do (get sticky).  Good job, Milestones Inaugural Class of 2012.

 A supplemental, but related, activity we engages in was taking a sugar cube and seeing how long it took for us to stir it until it dissolved, or disappeared.  The children really enjoyed this, so we kept adding sugar cubes and found that it took longer and longer for the sugar to dissolve, creating a solution.  We had done a little of this earlier in the year, but this time it was more relevant, knowing that we might have to add sugar to our lemonade.

This activity was very successful in that it was very engaging to the children, they asked a lot of questions and they did it for a long time!  (who says 3 and 4 year olds have short attention spans?)

We still really love snack time!

Karsten loved lining up the markers as he drew on big paper this week.

Hope you enjoy the cook book!