Monday, October 6, 2008

Exploring Christopher Columbus

In honor of Columbus Day (next Monday), Miss K's Circle Time theme for this week is Christopher Columbus. She asked the kids if they knew what an explorer was and if they could name one (Dora was mentioned, of course :). She told the kids who Christopher Columbus is; that he lived a long time ago, before there were planes, trains, etc.; that he was a sailor who sailed for the king and queen of Spain, etc. She taught them songs to help with the lesson, starting with the names of Columbus's ships (to the tune of "Three Little Indians"):

Nina, Pinta, Santa Maria,
Nina, Pinta, Santa Maria,
Nina, Pinta, Santa Maria,
These are Columbus's ships.

After reinforcing our current year and explaining when Columbus discovered North America, she taught the kids this song (to the tune of "The Ants Go Marching One by One"):

In fourteen-hundred and ninety-two,
Columbus sailed the ocean blue,
Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492.

Next she led the kids in a game. She removed the North America puzzle piece from the world puzzle and asked the kids to close their eyes while one of them hid the piece somewhere in the classroom. The kids took turns being "explorers," searching all through the classroom for land - so cute! As each kid searched for North America, the others sang (to the tune of "Row, Row, Row Your Boat"):

Sail, sail, sail your ship.
Sail it night and day.
Look for land, look for land,
All along the way.

It was a fun lesson that the kids really enjoyed! As soon as Circle Time was over, Miss D's son went straight for the bear sorting/tonging activity:

In the meantime, I pulled out the moveable alphabet and the pictures from word drawers 1 and 2, which Laura from My Montessori Journey graciously makes available on her blog. Word drawers 1 and 2 include words made up of the first 8 "red" letters: r, a, m, f, b, i, t, g. Miss K's daughter and my daughter explored the moveable alphabet and their Sound Books from last week a bit, and then my daughter set to work "writing" the names of the objects:

When Miss D's son finished up with the bears, Miss K's daughter took a turn:

This is one of her favorite activities, and one she often chooses. She always lines her bears up around the edge of the tray before she sorts them, but today Miss K pointed out that the bears along the outside of the tray are facing out, while the bears along the inside are facing in. Notice also that she starts with the purple bears right at 12:00, then works clockwise until she runs out of room and continues the pattern on the inside. So interesting!

Miss D's son and my daughter worked together to write the names of the word drawer objects:

After they had written out all of the words, I took the objects away and Miss D's son practiced "reading" the words - he was thrilled! We then matched the objects back to the words.

Miss D's son then moved on to - what else? :) - the hundred board. He loves this activity! Over the weekend, my daughter had done it up to about 40 but we never finished it - he gladly took over.

Check out the 84 - nice work!

My daughter worked on the teens boards...

...while I showed Miss K's daughter her very own "My Metal Insets Book" that I made her from the metal inset work she did a couple weeks ago. (I was hoping to reignite her interest in the metal insets as well as spark an interest in Miss D's son, who shies away from writing.)

It worked!

I noticed Miss D's son eyeing her work - I'm hoping he'll want to try this activity this week.

We had a great work cycle, and then it was time for PE! Miss D recently found a parachute at a consignment sale, and today the kids were eager to try it out:

They sang songs and did a bunch of activities with the parachute and balls - it was a definite workout for them!

Where is everyone?

After PE, everyone did their jobs, and it was time for our Bible verse and story for the week, the letter F from My ABC Bible Verses: "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16


Julie said...

Good ideas for Columbus Day! I'm going to borrow some of I'd planned on using Columbus Day as the theme for Art Group this week.

Anna said...

Lovely blog, I really enjoy popping in! Can I just say that to be completely accurate, when you set out the beads with the teens board they should be horizontal with tens on the left and units on the right, because then they completely mirror the tens and units. You do some great stuff.

Jennie said...


Thanks so much for your help - I relish input like this and hope all of this blog's readers will feel free to chime in with any comments!

The Dancy Family said...

SG loves her metal inset book & I can't tell you how adorable I think it is to hear a 3 year old talk about "metal insets"!