Thursday, April 11, 2013

Nurturing Acorns--Spring!

We started our new session of Nurturing Acorns at Woodlawn Nature Center, a nature-based preschool program. Each morning we start with a letter activity while the children arrive. We practiced the beginning letter of spring words this week, though have lots of variety in what we do. Galoshes, rain, puddles--theme of the morning as it poured outside!

Then we made spring head bands with spring themed stickers and shapes.

Little hands worked on gluing, peeling, and other fine motor skills. We practiced colors with our shapes and some even did patterns on their own.

We read books about Spring and tried out our new hats--even for the babies!

These were our books for the morning for story time and songs we sang. It sometimes takes a second to get in the groove of the tune!

Since it was pouring outside, we went on a Spring color walk inside the Nature Center The children discovered all kinds of colors!

For edible snacks we had grapes, string cheese and pretzels. The children got pretty creative, making flowers, birdhouses, etc.

During exploration time, the children had many options. The sensory bin was full of spring themed items. The categorize, sort, count, scoop, and explain as they talk and play.

Little hands help birds on nests. We talk about how we leave real birds alone in nests; however, this time to explore helps the children process what birds do.

We looked for Spring shapes in the sensory bag. We explored geometric shapes with puzzles. We counted with beads and practiced fine motor skills.

We did a Spring match, finding each object that is the same and used tongues to "count" pom poms. Simple activities like this really reinforce and give children practical play experience in math sense. We also had pattern blocks to work on colors, shapes, and spatial awareness.

Slowly, but surely, Spring has sprung! With the nature-themed preschool children reinforce academic concepts in a playful way.