On Wednesday, school was a no-go. Despite my great hopes, the "respiratory infection" that reared its ugly head in my two-year-old last Friday...then worked its way to my 9-month-old by Monday...managed to grab hold of my four-year-old on Tuesday night. I wouldn't wish this on any family (especially now that my 9-month-old has a secondary double ear infection!!), so we're biding our time and hoping that we will all be healthy and contagion-free by Monday.
I used the time to finish up some activities and create some new ones. I finally finished all of the sound boxes from Laura at My Montessori Journey's system. Basically, she breaks the alphabet up into three sections: red (RAMFBITG), yellow (PONLHUSC), and blue (DEXQYJKVWZ). (I think I've modified the order somewhat.) For her phonetic objects/sound boxes, she breaks the three groups into six smaller ones and has a set of phonetic objects for each group. Typically, phonetic objects are dollhouse miniatures, which my budget doesn't really accommodate (although I'm always keeping an eye out on craigslist and freecycle - just in case!). Instead, I made my own phonetic objects (phonetic pictures?), printed them out, laminated them, and organized them into six boxes:
Boxes 1 and 2: RAMF/BITG
Boxes 3 and 4: PONL/HUSC
Box 5: DEXQY
Box 6: JKVWZ
I tried to find six pictures for each letter, but some were harder than others. After I made these, it occurred to me that I should have included "inchworm" for the letter I - I'll revise the file and re-upload it soon.
I also made number cards to go with the red and blue numerical rods. I'm not sure why my initial materials order didn't include those, but it's been bothering me that I didn't have them. Sandpaper numbers don't work, because those go from 0 - 9, and I needed 1 - 10. I went ahead and made my own set that I cut up and laminated. The font I used is not all that common, so I need to figure out how to save the file as a .pdf, and then I'll upload it.
I also made a set of small number cards so that we could move beyond the bank game to simple addition, as Elizabeth Hainstock does in her book. The font is very important with these too, though (because the numbers have to be spaced just so), so I'll need to save them as .pdfs as well.
Those activities have been on my To Do list for a while now, and it feels great to have them finished. I hope you and your family are weathering this winter better than mine, and here's to healthier days to come!