The Scent of the Forest

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Outdoor play time was spent exploring the forest in order to enrich our camping activity week.  For the exploration, we came armed with a magnifying glass and R’s favourite pink bucket so that we could collect fallen leaves for an activity we had planned for later.  All was going wonderfully, or so I thought!  After a short while, a strange odour erupted and I realized that we needed to go home.  Sh*t happens!!  Although it would have been a great “camping experience” to wipe her butt with a leaf, I thought it unwise. LOL!  Luckily, we were close to home, so it was a quick trip back. Continue reading

Glowing Fire

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Song: 

A Ram Sam Sam – Boom, Boom Ain’t it Great to be Crazy is a song on the album  by Countdown Kids with lots of silly lyrics that older kids will surely appreciate!  R enjoyed the beat and had fun dancing along to the music.

Activity:

1. Catching Glow Bugs

IMG_9775I cut a glow stick up and poured the contents into a mason jar.  I added some of the plastic pieces of the glow stick so that the jar would make noise while R shook it.  R was more interested in trying to open the jar than checking out it’s glowing properties.  My husband and I had fun with it, though!

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Forest Shadows

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Song: 

Boom Boom Ain’t it Great to be Crazy – Boom, Boom Ain’t it Great to be Crazy is a song on the album  by Countdown Kids with lots of silly lyrics that older kids will surely appreciate!  R enjoyed the beat and had fun dancing along to the music.

Activity:

1. Creeping Shadows

IMG_9689I used the “under the starts” box from yesterday to make a forest scene.  In the box, I taped in a variety of forest animal silhouettes and trees that I cut out using my Cricut Machine (Create-a-Critter cartridge) to make the scene.  R used the flash light to cast shadows onto the scene.  I played our song for the day in the background and I talked about what animals were hiding in our shadow forest.  R pointed to and named the birds and called the other forest animals “doggie”.

 

Extension Activities:
a. Allow the child to use the forest scene as a story starter.  Either scribe the story for the child or have him/her write one on his/her own.
b. With older children, research what animals live in the forest and add descriptions of the forest habitat to the forest scene.

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Spying Coloured Birds

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Song: 

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star – We’ve practiced this song many times in the past, so R is familiar with this one! She’s now learning to sing some of the words to twinkle twinkle little star. She sings the, “up above the” part and sings it “uppa bubba” :). I love how she knows to change words into “songs” by extending them as she sings.

Activity:

1. Under the Stars

IMG_9575I have no idea why, but R absolutely loves cardboard boxes.  She can spend forever in a box laughing, playing and exploring.  For recreating the experience of camping under the stars, I poked some holes in a cardboard box and we looked at the how the light was shining through the holes.  As R poked at the holes in the cardboard box, we sang twinkle twinkle little star together.

Extension Activities:
a. Explore the concept of translucent, transparent and opaque materials with your child.

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Fishing for S’mores

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R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Song: 

I Love the Mountains by Countdown Kids (100 Silly Songs) – I Love the Mountains is a song I loved to sing with my Kindergarteners and Grade 1s. We used to sing it in a round and the kids loved it! R totally enjoys this song as well. In fact, she rocks back and forth as it plays and tries to sing along!   Like with most songs, I like to add actions to them so that R’s learning experience includes activation of a number of areas of the brain so that the learning is more meaningful and memorable.

Activity:

1. Let’s go Fishing

IMG_9452I pulled out my old Let’s Go Fishing game that is battery operated.  When turned on, the mouths of the fish open and close and the goal is to get the fishing poll in the fish’s mouth to get it out of the “pond”.   It sounds easy enough, but it’s pretty tricky! R had a tough time using the pole to get the fish out, so she often resorted to using her hands. I used the colours of the fish to guide her to picking out certain fish. I would say a colour, then point to a fish that was that colour and then she would scoop it out either with the pole or her hands.  Since the fish are small, I wouldn’t put this out for independent play until she fully stops putting things into her mouth.

Extension Activities:
a. Ask the child to name the colour of the fish as s/he fishes it out.
b. Work on positional words with the child.  Ask him/her to get fish from the “middle” or “outside” of the pond.

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Camp Out!

R was 17 months old at the time of this activity

Song: 

May There Always be Sunshine by Charlotte Diamond – What’s a week of camping without songs! This is a beautiful song by Charlotte Diamond that is sung in multiple languages. R loves listening to it. I’ve been playing this song to her since she was only a few months old. It has a wonderful calming effect on her, and on me, too!

Activity:

1. Camp Out

IMG_9438We had snacks out in R’s tent today and then she had fun playing in it with her teddy.  We sat inside and listened to the birds chirping.  We watched a squirrel playing in the tree branches above our house while looking through the top of the tent and pretended to put her teddy to sleep in the tent by tucking it under R’s hat.

Extension Activities:
a. Have the child help you set up a camp ground complete with a fake campfire, benches, tent, and pond.  Have the child work on his/her labelling skills and label (using pictures and/or words) the different areas in the camp ground.
b. Have the child wash the dishes after finishing eating using a bucket filled with soapy water and a dish cloth.

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