Tot School

~Krash is currently 41 months old~

** links to all toys and books are at the bottom of the post

It was a fun week at our house, but I forgot to have my camera close by for most of it! I just kept forgetting it, which is very unlike me. But we had fun anyway and I reminded myself what I always tell other moms, the moments are more important than capturing them! Our tots could care less if we have any photos of Tot School, we do that for each other…and for Mommy-memories right? So, I spent most of our week just in the moment with Krash! Here are a few of our captured moments…


Learning Toys

Our Bottle Top Name Cards made an appearance this week. Krash still loves to spell Pop Pop’s name first! He did really well with this, as always…it’s one of his favs!We LOVE our Bloem and Grow Blocks. Krash can spell his name now, and he adores lining the letters up with his special block set. He played with his blocks tons this week, since he just recently learned to spell and recognize his name…he’s so proud and goes around spelling it for us all the time!

We haven’t had our latches board out in awhile, so he loved this! I couldn’t believe how much better he was with it!

Another hand-made favorite is this awesome Itsy Bitsy I Spy bag, which we WON from Baby Love Blankies, back when Itty Bitty Bookworm had their blog celebration! This is an animal bag with letters in it also, and Krash LOVES it!!! He found animals for a really long time!!! I plan to get a few of these as Christmas gifts, they are wonderful!

Lots of packages came this week, providing us with some free Tot School tools…

Krash played with Dominoes a lot, doing many different things with them. They are a great learning tool!

Alphabet

We did Rr for Robots, using some special robots stickers I had bought just for the letter R!

Photo Learning Book

We only got to one color this week, brown. We only have white left and then we will move on to another topic! I am working on printing them all up for the boys now!
Theme…Monsters

Yup, we had one last week of fun monster stuff, honestly because I don’t have our next theme quite ready yet and we had so much fun with monsters!

Matching Shape Monsters to their “Shape House”.
I bought Krash a monster notebook and pencil from the dollar section at Target, it was the best $1 I have ever spent! He LOVED this notebook and “wrote” in it all week!

Recess…

We brought our riding toys up on the deck and had a blast! The Plasmacar continues to be a loved toy by all…even Mom and Dad!
Mommy’s Favorite…

Not that this is the best photo, but I love what it symbolizes. Krash is VERY happy with the lunch I made for him…a concoction I came up with myself (I will share on Lil Ladybug this week). I love that he is happy for lunch and not whining.



Monsters Tot Pack

I began making the Tot Packs in place of the smaller Tot Books back when I was pregnant, but honestly I haven’t even used the ones I made much, as I was making them for readers! BUT, the monster one is made for Krash so I put a ton of trial into it all.

It took me the longest to come up with a storage method I liked, as the Tot Books were no longer working for us. K wasn’t able to go back to them easily, as they were a bit too flimsy. I also wanted something, simple, inexpensive and Tot-proof to a degree (meaning he wouldn’t dump everything out or destroy it in a second).

Here’s what I came up with…

I took a simple clasp folder and a gallon size freezer Ziploc bag. I folded the bag to the right size, so I could 3-hole punch it on the folded part to hook into the clasps, like this…

I then got little Ziploc bags, whatever size was right for the item, and placed each individual item in a baggie by itself, with the cover image facing out so K could easily dig through them if he wanted to. I still need to open and shut the baggies for him, but he can easily sift through the folder without destroying it now.

I added the file folder game I made to the front pocket, as well as the mini book, “Monster Eyes.” The mini book could easily go into a baggie too, I just kept it out for now. The pockets are also great for storing projects that we are partially done with, so I don’t forget about them (if there’s coloring involved or something like that).

When it’s ready for storage, I store the tiny baggies into the bigger bag and seal it. Close the folder and it’s done! Compact, sturdy, cheap, easy. Also, with a storage folder like this, you can easily add other activities you may find on the web. It’s just a great way to store everything for a tot for a particular theme. AND, I like that I can easily take this with us if I want to-like to church, a doc appt, etc. Since it’s all separated, I can grab a folder and go, with pre-made games inside to play with!

If you’d like to make your own Monster Tot Pack, you’ll find all of the printables here on the new site. You’ll also see Pac Man’s monster’s as a part of the Tot Pack! This was also my first time “drawing” my own clip art…I made the monsters myself in Publisher, it was fun!

 



Tot School

~Krash is currently 40.5 months old~

** links to all toys and books are at the bottom of the post

Learning Toys/Trays

One of our all-time favorites is hammering the letters into this foam puzzle. We have both the upper and lowercase puzzle and love them!!!
This is one of our new favorites, the BIG version of the Lauri Peg Stacking set. I got mine from my mom who bought it for $40 at a teacher store. Be wise and buy yours on Amazon for less than $30! This is a wonderful open-ended toy that lasts for years. My 7 year old LOVES it, he built the little tower thing in this photo. If you don’t have this one, put it on a wish-list!!!

Krash just likes to put all of the pegs in, he’s not into the building yet.

He had tons of fun showing me how he could stand on it once he had all of the pegs in it!!!

He worked on spooning jewels into a paint tray to make a green/blue pattern.

We have a few big floor puzzles and I love them. We hadn’t done one in awhile and K was really excited when I pulled this one out. We did it about 4-5 times throughout the week he liked it so much!

I got this awesome little game from a homeschool sale for about 50 cents. I can’t find it anywhere online, but K loves it! It’s a mini connect 4 game with letters on the circles.

I got him a new coloring book and crayon wheel from the dollar store, which he loved!!!

Working on identifying numbers with our number stencil puzzles.

Drawing on our chalkboard…

He loves this toy!!! He pointed out each color for me and we counted them together after he got them all into the spots. He focused for a long time doing this!

Alphabet…

We played Letter Ball again and I snapped 1 photo and it was this one, I LOVE it!!!! This game is so much fun for tots with tons of energy, I highly recommend it or doing something similar. Doing kinesthetic activities (movement) is a great way for many tots to acquire skills.

Our letter project this week was Qq for Queen, inspired from No Time for Flashcards.




After we got our queen done, the boys really wanted to continue on with glitter. Me, not so much, but sometimes I am a nice Mommy. We have a song we do for calendar that has taught K to spell his name out loud and he asked to make “K-__ __ __ __” on the paper. He goes around spelling his name all the time now, P’s name too! Of course we had to make his name and everyone else in the family too!

Theme: Monsters

We continued on with our fun MONSTER theme and I got the entire Tot Pack done. Yes I know I said I would post it, but honestly I have been too busy creating it, and using it with K to even have time to think about posting it! I promise I will though, soon!

He worked on the puzzles I made for him…


This size sequencing game was made from the monster Pac Man drew on the computer. Let me just tell you how good it made P feel to see his creation end up in the Tot Pack!!! Great confidence booster!

We also played hide and seek with them, which helped a lot with identifying sizes.

K continued to work on his fuzzy monster poster from Target $1.

Here’s the spelling game I made for him, he loved this…

After the game the boys played with the monsters together, it was so cute!

Here he is matching monsters. And also having the monster “jump on the bed” like in the story.

This was the big flop. I made a folder with monster stickers, and cut out and laminated another set for matching. Yup, of course, he hated it.

Recess/Life School

Another caterpillar friend!!!!

Laurie Berkner was a BIG hit!!! Here they are running and playing “Catch You.”

Mommy’s Favorite…

Caught this shot during Laurie Berkner, I love the boys, but also Ladybug in the background checking it all out. I have to put her up so they don’t plow her over!!!


If you have a tot (approximately ages 1-3) at home, join in the fun and share what you’re doing with your tot! Here’s how to get started if you’re new… If you’ve never read this: Go HERE 1st for more details– please do!!! Then if you have any ideas you’d like to share, link up your exact post to MckLinky (if you have questions about how to do that, let me know in a comment or email-links to homepages will automatically be deleted).


 


 



Digital Drawing with Pac Man!

As I am sure you have all figured out, I love the computer. I teach myself things, and if it is something I want to learn ~ I will learn it, somehow. Come to find out, my oldest son is much the same. Today I brought out the first of my new monster creations (which I will be sharing soon), and told Pac that I “drew” the monsters myself on the computer. He was amazed to say the least and asked if I would show him how I did it.

I didn’t think he could learn so easily, but he did and created 2 cute monsters himself. I taught him how and then he went at it! I helped him edit a few minor details at the end (connecting arms closer to the body and simple things like that). These are about 95% his unique creations on his own!


Both will be featured in my new monster Tot Pack (It’s got way too much for just a Tot Book!). He is very excited and even helped me decide what skills to expose using his special monsters. Who knew creating Tot Books/Packs would become a family affair?!?! I love it!

In case you’re wondering, we use Microsoft Publisher, and use the little scribble tool over on the left sidebar by the shapes tools. I am NO expert by any means, but I teach him what I know!!!

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Tot School

~Krash is currently 40 months old~

** links to all toys and books are at the bottom of the post

Learning Toys…

Krash was finally interested in these great wooden word puzzles. We have had them for awhile now and I could barely get him to do them, but this day he did one after another and really seemed to enjoy them! I LOVE these because they use lowercase letters, something you rarely find in this type of toy for this age group.
He asked me if he could play with our Monkey Math toy-which wasn’t on his trays, and I got it down for him~I’m flexible like that.
This simple $1 store Cars puzzle is and has been a hit for a long time with both boys. This week they made car ramps out of it, numerous times. They practiced their new word “hypothesis” (thanks Dinosaur Train), as they tried to create different ramps and see if the car would go over them hill they made.
See, different clothes…he played with this a lot!
The cheap-o Oreo shape toys came out and this time he made tall towers.

Alphabet…

We made a Pp this week, for piano, inspired from No Time For Flashcards!After making the Pp, and playing with some P stuff, we of course had to play our piano!

Theme…Monsters!!

I am very flexible when it comes to plans for Tot School. I had an entirely different plan for the week, but Target had cute monster stuff in their dollar section, so I bought a few items and made it monster week at our house! We got out our cute monster books and read them each day and did a different monster activity each day! It was so much fun, we’re extending our monster theme through this next week and I made him a new Tot Book/Pack!!! Stay tuned, I promise to share the files this week!

We created monsters with stickers…
Afterwards, K just wanted to read his book again, how sweet is that? 😉We colored a velvet poster together, this was a fabulous opportunity for Pac Man to learn some life skills. It was a group project and I coached him through accepting his brother’s 3 year old artwork. Krash colored all over Pac Man’s monster and at first Pac was upset but I used it to teach patience, and by the end Pac was extremely encouraging to his little brother and we were proud of our group creation!!!
The HIT was this puzzle. We began by introducing it to K one day as a group activity after reading one day. He was instantly drawn in and did a good job with it…
I added it to his trays and he went back to it every day. He did this puzzle probably at least 20 times. He got so good at it, and I really enjoyed watching his skills progress as he did it again and again. We worked on lots of language development as he worked through it, I was blown away by the end of the week listening to him describe things as he was trying to work it.

Photo Learning Book…Colors!

We completed these colors this week and had a blast!!!

Recess/Life School…

Recess this week was outside mostly with the highlight being our fuzzy friend they boys found one day…

Just in case you think I am engaging my children in meaningful activities all day long, I present you with this amazing shot…
Yup, they’re all watching Baby Newton, learning shapes, while I clean the kitchen. I am so blessed that my 7 yr old still enjoys these movies too ;).

A little roller blading in his boxers ;)…
Daddy and K played guitar together one night and it was the cutest thing. Here K is belting out one of his VBS songs (“You’re Powerful” for anyone who did Crocodile Dock)

Mommy’s Favorites…

Seriously, how could these not be my favorites.
Melt my heart these 2. Drive me nutso, and melt my heart. Love them.

If you have a tot (approximately ages 1-3) at home, join in the fun and share what you’re doing with your tot! Here’s how to get started if you’re new… If you’ve never read this: Go HERE 1st for more details– please do!!! Then if you have any ideas you’d like to share, link up your exact post to MckLinky (if you have questions about how to do that, let me know in a comment or email-links to homepages will automatically be deleted).