Penguin Counting

Using crackers and penguin diagrams of varying numbers and amounts, we learned and revisited counting and Arabic numerals!

Each child was given a group of goldfish crackers, and a picture of penguins with numbers inside them.

Once again, we are using things that our little ones are naturally interested in to teach about counting, numeral recognition, and patterns!

Not limited to just numbers, preschool math incorporates a broad range of skill sets and knowledge including sorting, colors and recognizing groups and patterns.

These activities teach our little ones about problem solving and using logic. This activity also involved fine motor skills, as they manipulated Their fish and attached them to their rows.

Play Dough Penguins

Since we are learning about penguins this week, we used to play dough to create our own version of them!

Using play dough as a medium, pipe cleaners, and plastic eyes, we created these magnificent creatures!

Using play dough helps a child practice using certain physical skills with the hands when they manipulate the dough with their fingers.

Lastly, using play dough helps a child practice using imagination and other cognitive abilities such imitation, symbolism and problem solving.

Moose Color Sorting

Sorting is a beginning math skill. It may seem that a big chunk early math is about learning numbers and quantity, but there’s much more to it. By sorting, children understand that things are alike and different as well as that they can belong and be organized into certain groups. Getting practice with sorting at an early age is important for numerical concepts and grouping numbers and sets when they’re older.

This type of thinking starts them on the path of applying logical thinking to objects, mathematical concepts and every day life in general. Studies have even been shown that kids who are used to comparing and contrasting do better in mathematics later on. For this activity, we practiced sorting different colored moose. Using our thinking minds, we placed different colored moose onto the different colored circles of a Twister board! Since we are learning about moose, this was a perfect complement to our curriculum!

Graham Cracker Moose

Food preparation is not only a fun, engaging activity for children,  but one that can be used for years as an important teaching and development tool for all ages. For one thing, hands-on cooking activities encourage a sense of pride and confidence. The act of following a recipe can encourage self-direction and independence, while also teaching children to follow directions and use thinking skills to problem solve.

Working with food also inspires children’s curiosity, thinking, and problem solving, offering new opportunities to make predictions and observations.

Additionally, creating snacks offers authentic opportunities for students to understand and apply their knowledge of measuring, one-to-one correspondence, numbers, and counting. As they follow a recipe, children organize ingredients, follow a sequence, and carry out multiple directions.

Lastly, chopping, squeezing, mixing, and spreading materials help develop a child’s small muscle control and hand-eye coordination. For this activity, we used a few ingredients to crease Moose Snacks. We used graham crackers as the head, pretzels as the antlers, and blueberries as the eyes. Once we were finished, we ate up our yummy creations!

Moose Habitats

We began our Arctic Animal month with a lesson about all things related to the moose!!

Although native to Europe and Asia, moose are found throughout Northern hemisphere in Northern Canada and other colder climates.

Moose are also called “elk” and are members of the deer family.

These large mammals are solitary and do not form herds. Although generally slow-moving and sedentary, moose can become aggressive and move quickly if angered or startled.

Using small toy moose, pine cones, artificial grass, rocks, and clay, we created our very own moose habitats!

Counting Clouds

Early math is not about the rote learning of discrete facts like how much 5 + 7 equals. Rather, it’s about children actively making sense of the world around them. Unlike drills or worksheets with one correct answer, open-ended, playful exploration encourages children to solve problems in real situations.

Because the situations are meaningful, children can gain a deeper understanding of number, quantity, size, patterning, and data management.

For example, it is easier to understand what six means when applied to a real-life task such as finding six beads to string on a necklace or placing one cracker on each of six plates. It is for this reason that we cotton balls, colorful paper, and numbers to practice our counting. To fit this into our winter theme, we used colorful illustrations numbered 10-14.

These symbolized clouds that your little ones made by sorting them by number. They started by placing them onto the clouds in no particular order. Once they mastered this task, they added them (while counting out loud) with the number ten on the top and the number fourteen on the bottom.  Next, they practiced adding and subtracting different cotton balls and counting them.

Flower Foam Wreaths

Lateralization activities provide a great educational and developmental experience for preschoolers. As children grasp whatever implement they are working with, they are building their pincer grip which is crucial for writing skills.

The more they do this, the more they learn about which hand is more comfortable for them.

Lateralization activities are also a lesson in patience as students ever so slowly work their way through a project  with their chosen implement.

This activity involved a creative way to practice our lateralization skills. Using pine boughs and floral foam, your little ones wove their very own wreaths!