Friday, February 28, 2014

Pre-K Week 27: Dr. Seuss

This week was a very fun and exciting one because we were learning all about Dr. Seuss! Dr. Seuss’ birthday is on Sunday, March 2nd, and I decided that we should learn all about Dr. Seuss the week leading up to his birthday so that the kids can get more excited when it actually is his birthday. It was so hard to pick and choose which books to read each day, because there are so many great ones and cute ideas to go with them!

I focused on one book per day, which we read in the morning, then we did activities on throughout the day.

On Monday, we read “The Cat in the Hat”, because I figured most kids would have already read the popular book, and it would be a great way to introduce Dr. Seuss as the author who wrote the words in the book everyone loves. We talked about what it means to write a book, and I showed a picture of Dr. Seuss. We talked about how he has very silly books with talking animals and made-up words and characters.

To go along with “The Cat in the Hat”, we made our own Cat in the Hat Hats out of paper plates and construction paper (from Mama Likes Me). 

This was actually a very easy craft and the hats stayed up perfectly and looked adorable! I started by cutting out the inside of paper plates. I then took a large piece of white construction paper, as well as a large piece of red construction paper cut into 2” strips. The kids glued the red stripes onto the hat. They then made little tabs on the bottom of the white paper by cutting on a line. We stapled the tabs to the inside of the inner ring of the plate, and it made the perfect hat! We added strings to keep the hats to their heads, and the kids LOVED wearing them around school at the end of the day (not to mention there wasn’t a person that passed them that could keep their ‘Awwww’ inside).

We also played a game called ‘Hat, Hat, Cat’, which is just like ‘Duck Duck Goose,’ but you change out the words. The kids loved playing it!!!
The kids started a Dr. Seuss Pre-School Pack from 123 Learn Curriculum, which was actually one of the most fun packs we’ve worked on all year!
Of course, we had to watch ‘The Cat in the Hat’ movie. We watched an old VHS one, and it was actually really cute! It wasn’t just a reading of the book, it added in more dialogue and songs and lasted a whole half-hour.

On Tuesday, we read “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish”. The kids then got to play a game called ‘Pin the Goldfish in the Bowl’ from BearHugsBaby. This game was the same as ‘pin the tail on the donkey’, but instead of a tail and donkey, it’s a fish and a bowl. It was a great game to encourage using different senses (such as feeling instead of seeing), as well as learning to follow simple rules, such as NOT lifting off the blindfold. 

During rotations, the kids did a Goldfish Counting Activity that came with their preschool pack. For this page, they traced the numbers that were in a goldfish bowl, then they added that many fish to their bowl. Of course, they used Goldfish crackers and got to eat them afterwards!

The art project that they did on Tuesday was a ‘One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish’ handprint activity from Vanessa’s Blog, where they practiced gluing their hands down in the correct order according to my directions, then they traced over my letters and added faces to the fish.

On Wednesday, we read “Horton Hears a Who”, which was a very long book for the kids to sit through (as some of Dr. Seuss’ books are). After reading the book, the kids took part in a ‘Speck’ science lab from Melissa and Doug. In this activity, I put a little dot of fabric paint on a few fuzzies and put them in a pile on our work table. The kids used magnifying glasses to look at all the ‘Clovers’ to see if there were any specks on them. The students LOVED using the magnifying glasses (I had to borrow some from Kindergarten, I didn’t have any) and it kept them focused all day.

The students also did a We Are Here Speck Art Project from TippyToe Crafts. This was another great way for the students to practice following directions and tracing letters, and it also gave them a cute way to remember the story. 

At the end of the day, I started the story “Horton Hatches the Egg”, which I read over two days so that they didn’t have to sit so long again. The kids loved this story even more than the first one!

On Thursday, we read “Bartholomew and the Oobleck”, so, of course, we had to make Oobleck! I used whole-group instruction for making the oobleck, and the students were broken up into 3 different tables and each table made their own bowl. I gave each student a name tag with a number on it, and each number had a different job. Number 1 poured in a cup of cornstarch to their bowl. Number 2 added half a cup of water. Number 3 added 3 drops of food coloring, and number 4 was the first one to stir. I pre-measured the ingredients and put them in Styrofoam cups. The whole process went very smoothly, and there was no fighting over the jobs! 

 I then let the kids play with the oobleck in one of the rotations… they had so much fun and their hands were ‘Hulk hands’ (green green green) for the rest of the day. 

I didn’t have the book “Bartholomew and the Oobleck”, and I couldn’t track down anyone at the school who did. Luckily, I found that there is actually an interactive iPad version available through the AppStore, that made it even more fun for my kids! The pictures moved, they added sounds, the book could be read to you, and vocabulary was highlighted when you touched the picture. The book is long already, so making it digital was really the only way we could get through it!

Finally, on Friday, we read “Green Eggs and Ham”. After reading it, of course we had to watch the movie, which is only about 10 minutes long and reads through the book but adds sounds effects and music.
Then, of course, we had to eat green eggs and ham!!
Now, I was going to do the whole cooking experience where I bring in the skillet, we beat the eggs and let them cook, but after the mess that oobleck made on Thursday and the stress that was caused from keeping kids from being burned the last time I brought the griddle in, I decided the much easier method of making Deviled Green Eggs and Ham from pinterest. I made the deviled eggs the night before, added green food coloring to the yolk mixture, and folded up ham on top and secured it with a toothpick. Before I passed them out, I made a big deal out of how the man in the story was so brave for trying the green eggs and ham, and he liked them even when he thought he wouldn’t! I then offered up a sticker to anyone who was brave enough to try them. 

After we ate the green eggs and ham, we made this Do You Like Green Eggs and Ham? Chart that I am pleased to say I came up with myself (ok, so it’s not rocket science). I wrote each student’s name on a paper egg, and they put their names under the “I do not like green eggs and ham! I do not like it Sam-I-Am” column, or the “Say! I like green eggs and ham! I Do! I like it Sam-I-Am!” column. I had to condense it down for most of the kids by saying ‘yummy or yucky?’ Out of all of my students, only 2 refused to try it! Most of them dumped out the green yolk mixture inside and ate the boiled egg, which was good enough for me (but the inside mayonnaise-y part is the best part!). 

For our green eggs and ham activities, we did a ‘Foods I Like’ sort, where the students took pictures of food that I had cut out of magazines, and they sorted it into columns of ‘foods I like’ and ‘foods I don’t like’. It was cute seeing how many students understood the assignment, as well as what the kids liked. There were pictures of pizza, cake, and goldfish in there that the students went wild over. 


We also did a Green Egg Matching game, where I wrote capital and lower-case letters on each half of green plastic Easter eggs, and the kids had to match the capital to the lower-case. It was quite a creative and eventful day! 

Oh! And of course I can’t forget to share my Sally and Me Bulletin Board, which was inspired by this picture on pinterest. I want to leave it up all year!!!

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