Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Why we're MIA.....

since coming back home from my trip, i started potty training briggy and he will soon have his adneiod removed---so things have been crazy and i decided on not having the structured preschool until the week following his surgery {november 8} we've been doing a lot of potty, pumpkin and halloween related activities---but thats about it. If you happen to read this entry, know that there will be more info and worksheets to come--and if you had a minute, pray for my little briggy---we're hoping this surgery will help him in all the speech and behavioral delays he's experiencing.
thank you!
kelly tillotson

ps- to all of you blogger moms that homeschool multiple children, are immaculate homemakers, have side businesses that you run online....and have time to blog daily---i really look up to you and want to know where the HECK YOU FIND YOUR TIME?! I am really struggling with getting all the work together online, let alone teaching it to him, taking care of my younger one, cleaning the house {sort of} and then at the end of the day having the energy to blog about it, when all i want to do is curl up with my hub, popcorn and watch real housewives. I would love to know your secrets!!!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Week 4: D, #4, Green and Hearts

I am putting together a packet for my mother-in-law to work with briggy. I hope she enjoys the time with him, its so exciting for me to see him understand concepts so well. It is one of my favorite times of day with him, and Im so excited in his progress and willingness to participate.

Heres the lowdown on the weeks worksheets:

Letter D:
{Photograhs of Daddy will also be looked at, as well as a portrait of daddy by "little daddy" {thats one of the names briggy likes to be called! heart melting stuff, right?}

The Color Green:
Green grass, playing outside
Green fruits and veggies {broccoli, green beans, celery, peas, grapes and pears}
Green Eggs and Ham {Book and Green eggs for a meal!}
Blue and Yellow paint mixing
Red light, Green light. I wish I could take pictures of this, but ill be away! I may just have to play it with him the day I get back. Im just going to have 1 big green circle glued to a stick and 1 big red circle on another, so he learns that green means GO and red means STOP!

Here are the links!

Number 4:
This website provides a few different resource links. I dont want to overwhelm the boys babysitters with too much, so ive lessened the amount of worksheets for this week, but I also have #4 activity pages from workbooks I purchased at the Dollar Tree {They had Sesame Street, Winnie the Pooh and Disney themed books on shapes, numbers, letters and colors!}


Heart represents Love. Talk about the Love Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ have for us and how they show it in so many ways. How can we show love back to Them and to our family, friends and fellow neighbors?

Make paper heart chains

Make a frog out of hearts!

Triangle Time!

One of Briggy's favorite shapes is a triangle. He always makes the shape with his fingers---its sort of weird, but hes always done that! I am about to leave for a week for my best friends wedding, so I am going to post the links up for all the worksheets i'm leaving with my mother in law, friend and husband. Get ready for a lot of links!


{Scroll to page 4}
{Pages 7-9}

The number 4, the color green, hearts and conference packet to follow....

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

All about Orange!

Today our focus was the color orange. I had originally "scheduled in my head" the weeks based on ROYGBIV and then on the 8th week have a rainbow activity, but when it came down to the wire a couple weeks ago I decided to swap the yellow and orange. We did yellow last week and it went perfect with the bananas and bus theme that I worked on with Briggy, and when you mix red {week one} and yellow {week 2} you get ORANGE {for today!} I have a painting activity planned to do when Briggy wakes up from his nap. We played outside a little too long for "exercise" today, and ran out of time. We did color all of our worksheets and played an orange game!

Here are the links to the orange pages {they are mostly coloring pages of fruits and veggies that are orange}

Color Orange and Practice Writing

Pumpkin 1
Pumpkin 2

Online game of Orange

A ton of Orange-related ideas

Since today is the first day of Fall {90 degrees in texas. boohoo.} and orange is such an essential fall color I showed pictures of fall trees to Brigham online. I showed him where we used to live and photos of 2 falls ago, even before baby Ollie was born when we went to Vermont and saw the most beautiful trees.
Okay, heres the pic...only because it makes me so happy and sad all in one. I am a New England girl TRULY missing her Autumn weather and foilage...

Me, Tom, Briggy in Bjorn, My best friend Alisa. Behind us: The Autumnal Glory of Vermont!

The trees don't turn those colors here in least not the small farming town we live in. Sigh. So I told Briggy about Jack Frost and how he starts to go to work this time of year painting the leaves orange, yellow and red. I told him that Jack needed help in Texas, so we needed to make a magic fall wand.
I cut out a few scraps of different colored ribbon. I laid them all out and Briggy had to pick only the ribbon that had orange on it. Then I hot-glued the ribbon to a big popsicle stick that briggy had colored orange. Now he needs to work his magic and turn all the leaves and trees around him orange!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Counting to 3 and Texture Tuesday!

Phew! back on track today with the CORRECT lesson, just way late posting it. When naps get pushed back, and groceries need to be bought and episodes of Glee and The Duggars need to be watched....Im posting at 11pm! I need to get on top of things! My best friend is getting married and I am heading out back East for the preparations and wedding next week...and well, ive got lots to do and on my mind. Like how am I going to clean my house enough so my Mother-in-law isn't mortified at the slob her son married! {okay, its not that bad, but i've seriously been slacking the past 2 weeks...}
Anyway, here are lots of 3 worksheets. Im kind of excited to get through 10 so I can start doing more activities that use all the numbers. There are alot of great ideas out there, but they are more for general numbers and math and not so much specific numbers. So the worksheets are pretty repetitive, but its been good for Briggy. He's only 2 1/2 so he really needs the repetition for it to become well-known and remembered in his little noggin.

Practice Tracing 3
Coloring and Tracing {and it was a C word! {cloud} love it!}
More Coloring and Tracing!

Finding sets of 3 and more tracing!

Sets of 3
#3 {page 3}

The "sensory" activity was a little different today. I had a 3 story compilation book from when I was a little girl that we read today. It had the 3 little pigs, 3 little kittens and 3 little bears. I actually found it for sale online at amazon, but Its not in print anymore. I always really liked that book since I got three stories read to me for the price of one :)

{heres the link, its going for $ you can find a different book. maybe I should sell mine? haha}
The sensory activity revolved around the story of the 3 little bears. I had 3 pails. 1 was filled with raffia {straw} the second with pipecleaners {sticks---we dont have any trees in our little subdivision yard. so sad} and lastly, lego "bricks"
Briggy had to guess which one was what as we read through, and afterwards he had lots of fun building his houses, and even more fun watching me *try* to blow them down.
Do I have pictures? No. I want to cry. I am so bad at this! Im all excited putting these activities together and I always forget :( then we're in the middle of it upstairs and I hate to leave him half way through {because I know hes going to destroy whatever it is by the time I find the camera} Seriously, I to just put it in my pocket in the mornings. I am so disapointed in myself! Its kind of boring just reading a blog with no pictures. I am normally a very visual person, so I appreciate when other bloggers post pictures. I feel like I have a better understanding of what they are doing.
Anyway, I solemnly promise to snap photos from now on. Promise, to all 2 of you that happen to read these daily entries!

Monday, September 20, 2010

The Letter C and CTR

Can I be completely honest with you? I am a total goof and looked at the wrong monday and did "D" for today instead of "C" Ugh! What a dope! Anyway, in keeping with order, I am going to post the C activities we were SUPPOSED to do, but I dont have any completed or interactive preschool photos.

Letter C practice and coloring worksheet

Cat coloring page

Uppercase C
Lowercase C
{both courtesty of --scroll through the file to the C and c pages}

Candy Corn worksheet {we will glue candy corn into the shape of the C as well as snack on some!}

Magnet, Dot or sticker page--C is for Cowboy

C tracing page

Itsy Bitsy Book--C

{the following FHE lesson plan is from it out for tons of ideas and links to hymns and lesson manuals for this particular activity}

Choose the Right

Family Home Evening Lesson

Opening Song: "Choose the Right Way" Children's Songbook #160

Opening Prayer : Child

Scripture: 2 Nephi 2:27

Lesson: Mom

This lesson based on 'Freedom to Choose' chapt 4, Gospel Principles, pg 17

God tells us through his prophets that we are free to choose between GOOD and EVIL. We may choose eternal life by following Jesus Christ. We can also choose captivity by following Satan.

When we choose to do right things it makes Heavenly Father and our parents happy. When you do some Right things it makes it easier to do MORE right things. When we live according to God's plan for us we grow in faith, power, knowledge, and all other good things.

If we keep the commandments and make right choices we will become like Him.


Have a bowl with different choices in it (eg stickers, small toys, chocolate etc) Let each child choose something from the bowl. Talk about how in life we make choices EVERY DAY. We hope that they will make good or right choices.

Play Tic Tac Toe/Naughts and Crosses - demonstrating how we can choose when our turn

Show pictures from gospel art kit or elsewhere of GOOD Choices - Going to church, children helping others, saying prayers, Cleaning their room, drawing/playing nicely etc

Make or color CTR rings/shields

Closing Song: "Dare to do Right" Children's Songbook #158

Closing Prayer: Child


A bowl of treats to choose from!

The activity ideas and others can be found here at the Choose the Right Lesson Primary 2 Lesson Manual

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Squares and Storytime

Today I had another busy day preparing for the church activity, but Briggy was able to complete some square activity worksheets, punch out some squares using my square puncher
and have story time snuggled up to Mommy {my favorite!}

Square Worksheets:


Sammy the Square

More Tracing Squares

Making Progress with Drawing Squares

Square Search

Last Tracing Activity

I buy a lot of things on because I acquire about $20 a month in amazon gift cards by using Swagbucks. {if you click on that link, you can sign up!} its a search engine that randomly gives you "bucks" 450 swagbucks=$5 amazon gift card. Its been a great blessing, because we really dont have the extra money to buy a lot of the supplies and other things I buy online that I cant use coupons on {yes, im one of those crazy coupon ladies!!}
Here is the book we read about school buses:

Im am planning on having School buses be the emphasis of tomorrows recap and craft...and hopefully get some Halloween inspiration up for you!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Yellow and Hanky dash!

Ugh! I am a mad woman today! I have so many projects going on this week {and me being last minute on the finishing touches had today to finish them all up} can i vent for a minute: spray painting and assembling dessert stands, making christmas countdown blocks, pulling out and sorting through halloween decor, making 2 dozen cookies and 2 dozen cupcakes, assembling 24-4 page handouts, starting to roll diapers for a diaper cake...somehow I managed to feed the kids and give them kisses in between....but they watched a lot of movies today to keep them occupied while mommy went nuts.
Briggy did do all of his worksheets, but mostly without me helping him along, I was just sitting at the table stapling and gluing my own projects---so he did a lot of painting things yellow, ripping up yellow streamers and pasting them to fun fun!
When he woke up from his nap around 4:30 I had just finished my workout and I was sweaty and gross, so I figured now was as good a time as any to get our exercise in. I had bought these bright yellow hankerchiefs awhile back, so I pulled them out and designated one side of the room "A" with a yellow cut out of A, and the other side "B" with a yellow cut out of B. I had a yellow hankerchief on each side, as well as one other color {one black and one blue} he had to run to point A, grab the right color hankerchief, then run to B and grab the other yellow hankerchief--but I was in between the two points in the middle of the room trying to grab the hankerchief from him, so he had to get past mommy! he thought this was hilarious and we are going to be playing this more often! I didnt get pictures because I was too much "in action" and I still am not quite great at remembering these things for blogging purposes! but at least my camera is working! I forgot to give the hubs a shout out for fixing it for me the other night!

Here are the links to all the work sheets Briggy colored with. Lunch was served on yellow party plate with a yello fork and yellow cup. {good thing i have such a stash of party supplies...i just about have every color!} I feel kind of guilty not working with him as much as I wanted to today, but he definitely has the color yellow down, even though he still calls it "he-woah"

Bumble Bee coloring

Bananas are YELLOW!

The Wheels on the Bus go round and round mini book! {I love being able to incorporate the letter-B and the color-yellow in all these worksheets!}

Interactive online game with all yellow objects!
Briggy loves these games!!!

I wish I could say tomorrow will be less hectic, but I know its not going to be! We are having a Halloween-inspiration activity for the ladies at my church tomorrow. They are a lot of fun family-friendly ideas. Im hoping to get some good pictures and I can post them on Friday. You can store them away and use them for any up coming Halloween/October parties you may be planning for your little ones!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Number Two and Sensory Acitivity

Today we did a lot of practice worksheets on how to write the number 2, as well as picking out sets of 2 worksheets. Ever since I introduced paints to Briggy last week....hes been asking to "haint" {again with the H sound! ergh!} constantly!
The dot-to-dot activities I originally used a circle paintbrush {until he broke it...} and today we just used our fingers and a regular small paintbrush. I am going to purchase some of those specialty markers soon {and possibly a giveaway....} because they seem fun and a staple with a lot of the moms of blogs I check out.

Number 2 coloring page. I liked this one because the star is a good size to cut out after colored and make a badge with it or attach it to a popsicle stick for a magic wand!

Practice writing 2!

Tracing and finding sets of 2
Link 1
Link 2
Link 3
Link 4 {scroll to 2nd page!}

#2 Dot activity

I have to brag for a second--look at these 2's Briggy made on his own! he made a lot of scribbles too, but this page was AMAZING!!!!

Last night when I was picking and choosing the worksheets to print out, I came across this name tracing page:

I thought to myself "No way in heck they'll have Brigham, but maybe Oliver..." I checked for the heck of it, and HOLY MOLY! they had Brigham! How crazy!?! I wouldnt have expected that since its such an unusual name {unless you are in Utah, and even then its not that common!} My friend's son has an unusual name too, Cade, and she just told me that they have Cade too! So whether or not your child has a popular name, or an uncommon name--you just may be in LUCK!

Sensory Activity

I came across a recipe for GAK! awhile back that I wanted to try but it used Borax and some other ingredients that I didnt have lying around...but knew Briggy would love that, and it would be a great sensory activity for him. I found a website that had a recipe that only used cornstarch and water {and food coloring if you wanted} to make this bizarre gooey concoction! Ewgh! It is so weird. Chalky and dry, but gooey and runny all at once. It still amazes me at 26! I used to love playing with the "real" stuff back in the 90s, but I think this homemade recipe is pretty darn fun!

Gak/Goop Recipe

Materials Needed

4 parts cornstarch
1 part water
(Can add coloring)

What To Do

Add water gradually to cornstarch. Stir with fingers.

Gak Play:

This mixture is great fun for those children who love to play in the mud -- but it avoids the filth factor! The "Gak" will provide a variety of interesting textures and consistencies. It will be solid and chalky in some places, runny and oozy in others.

The Gak is great fun on its own. But to extend play (or enliven it on another day), you might add big mixing spoons, a sieve or sifter, little cups or dishes, measuring utensils, or washable plastic toys.

Adding a little food coloring or Liquid Watercolor to the Gak and allowing children to mix it in is another great way to extend play. Do two colors and turn it into a "science" experiment about color mixing.

A great feature of this material is that, when the little spills on floor and table top dry, you just sweep them up. Teacher Annie tells me that you can save your tub of Gak, and that when it dries out, you can simply add more water! Very economical this way.

(courtesty of

Monday, September 13, 2010

The Letter B!

The letter B is a big deal in our home. Briggy says "D" as b almost in every word except: bubble, ball and boo! it has been a talked about issue with the speech therapist every since we started. We have tried lots of things, and for some reason we can't break the "habit" he's formed with the d-sound. Its really frustrating! We will be playing a game that the therapist recommended by tossing things back and forth and making a song using B with the variety of following vowels, "bahh, beyyy, buuu, biiiih" and we repeat the sounds back and forth to eachother. when we do games like that and are looking him face to face, he seems to have the most success.

Briggy really loves Butterflies and Bumble Bees, so those are our main B activities, but also balls and bubbles during playtime. I tried to find something on transportation to sort of stick with the theme from last week and found a couple boat activities.

Here are the activity sheets that I printed off for Briggy to work on. I dont know WHAT I did to our camera, but I can't get the batteries to work in it! I charged them over night and it still says low battery when I load them in the camera, and it just shuts right off. I've tried different outlets---its a pretty new camera! hopefully I'll get to the bottom of it. I have such bad luck with cameras!

Heres a link to ALL of Erica's {confessionsofahomeschooler} B activities. She has a TON! I only did a couple because I really want to laminate a lot of her printables so I can reuse them, and well....still havent figured out how to fix my xyron. GRR! I think I might take a lot of to-be-laminated papers to a local Christian store that laminates for super super super cheap.

Tracing Upper and Lowercase Bb

Tracing Bb and letter-sound-object recognition worksheet

Little Letter B book!
(instructions on little book assembly)

Practice B writing, and choosing B sounds worksheet

B is for Boat!

The Smallest Object-B words

Hug-a-bug Song!
Hug a Bug
Hug a bug,
Hug a bug,
But don't EVER
hug a bee!
It might sting
your nose,
your hand,
or your knee.

Bumble Bee coloring page

Bb dot-a-dot activity {}

Family Home Evening Activity!

Pres. Hinckley's 9 B's coloring sheet, creating a bumble bee out of a toliet paper roll...and a honey-licious treat. I hope when Tom gets home he can get the camera working so I can show pictures!
More activities based on the "B's"

Friday, September 10, 2010

Week 1 Review!

Our schedule was put off a few hours today due to Brighams speech therapy session, then lunch, then nap. So we actually didnt do the activity until he woke up after 4pm! night school, if you will!

We went over and talked about each activity that he did this week. That took a little bit of time, as we discussed what was going on in the picture, what he liked most about it, etc.
We of course had to sing the Ants go marching song a few times!
We also re-read the Caterpillar book. Briggy and Ollie really enjoy story time, and Briggy loves the interactive nature of sticker books.
Then our craft project was using each element we learned this week.

Apples for A, the number 1, the color red and circles.

With my cricut (I love this machine with all my heart, and it has made my crafting and now preschool-craft making life soooo much easier!) but of course these items can be made by good ol fashion cutting out, or using some punches.

I cut out different sized RED CIRCLES and green leaves and number ONES. I also cut out the word APPLES.

We were able to make apples using all the concepts we learned this week! I dont know if I'll luck out every week with such an easy activity, but this week was pretty great!

We played just for fun "hot apple" {same as hot potato but with an apple} with the apple that would be his early evening snack. We sang the song "Red Apple, Red Apple, as red as can be--for mommy loves briggy {throw it to briggy fast} and briggy loves me {briggy throws it back to mommy fast} I remember singing that in kindergarten myself :)

I don't have any pretty colored file folders to start my file folder projects with, nor is my EXPENSIVE Xyron 900 working {I have read a million reviews...all positive, I dont know what it is with mine {or if its me being dumb as a brick} but I have not had any success with it! The adhesive and double sided laminate cartridges have messed up on me every time I've tried. Now they are stuck together and I cant even get it to load. No one I am friends with locally has one, so Im out of luck and ideas on how to fix it and figure out whats going on. (online tutorials dont really seem to address the issues im having either!)
I do have some regular manila folders that I think I might just whip one up for practice tonight and I will post the result when the boys are down for the night. I made some pdf files of the apples, instructions and folder cover that you can use.
I have lots of very cute cricut images I could cut to make some folders, and I probably will as soon as I get the colorful file folders--but I realize alot of you don't have the machine, and printing and cutting out the images works for most people. It's also easier, which I am all about these days! Maybe once a month I'll make one super cutesy one, and the rest of the folders will be nice, but not as crafty and labor intensive....
Here's the link!

I'll post the finished product late tonight or tomorrow morning, so you can get an idea of what it'll look like put together. Hopefully the instructions make sense to you all!

{I've linked up to one of my favorite pre-school resource blogs!}

preschool corner

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Circle Time!

Circle Street Printable
Here is another transportation-themed activity. Just like the number one that you were able to laminate, this street is in the shape of a circle. The cars can go ROUND AND ROUND like a circle!

Pick the circle activity!

Tracing Circle Worksheet

I made my own circle snack activity! Its my first attempt at a PDF file, so hopefully this works!

The Circle Song!
A circle, a circle, (draw in the air)
Draw it round and fat. (use index finger to draw circle in the air)
A circle, a circle, (repeat action)
Draw it for a hat. (draw a circle in the air overhead)
A circle, a circle, (repeat action)
Draw it just for me. (draw in the air)
A circle, a circle, (repeat action)
Now jump and count to three: One! Two! Three!

Circle Caterpillar Craft (to segue into the hungry caterpillar book we'll be reading)

I chose the caterpillar book for a couple reasons--I had recently bought it online when it was clearanced really low and had free shipping along with a whole bunch of halloween books---so it was "new" to briggy and not a holiday theme---most all of the fruit the caterpillar eats are "circle fruits" and the ending of the books shows how the caterpillar turns into a beautiful butterfly....guess what one of the B week activity is? BUTTERFLIES! so that will start on monday, but for friday's recap lesson, we will most likely be re-reading the hungry caterpillar book!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Color Red and Exercise {til you're red in the face!}

Red things I see!
I had several different cutouts of items half with red, half with other colors, Briggy had to paste all the Red things he could find.

red dot activity

Color sorting activity:

I had 8 pompoms {four red, four other colors} and since briggy is big into scooping with shovels or spoons, he had to scoop all the red pom poms and put them on the red spot, and the colors that were not red, on the brown spot. He like that game--played it a few times. He really liked putting the wrong color on the red spot and shaking his head saying "no no no! nah {not} hed {red} for some reason, hes replacing the "h" sound for a lot of the beginning consonants in words....especially his colors. working the beginning sounds A LOT with him lately....hes been focusing so much on the ending sounds, that he seems to have forgotten, or not really cared about the beginning. Oh, Brigs!

We will be reading "The Little Red Hen" online {from a great resource, that website was recommended by one of Briggy's developmental therapists, and he LOVES all of the content on the site, and thinks he is a total big shot sitting at the computer in the "spinny" chair!

After the story we will be creating our own 'little red hen'
materials used:
small red party plate
red cardstock that we traced briggy's hand prints on
scissors to cut out shapes
glue or staples to adhere hand feathers, face, etc.
triangle and heart for face "pieces" and buttons for eyes!

We read from Exodus about how Moses parted the Red Sea and how they were able to walk through. {Exodus 14:21-22}

Red Sea Acitivity 1

Red Sea Activity 2

Our fun exercise activity got us jumping all around! I used different colored felt pieces and Briggy had to try and jump and land on only the RED ones. When Briggy wakes up from his nap this afternoon he will get to eat yummy red jello for a snack!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Number #1 and Sensory play

Today we are reviewing the number ONE and having a sensory-play activity. I am trying to incorporate the same themes through the week {apples, ants, transportation}
I didn't want to do just one item {like apples} this year, I thought I'd spice things up a bit with a few different options. The first go-around with Briggy we just did the one {apples} and it got a little boring!

Number One Street Printable

This is a fun activity that you'll need to pull out a toy car or two. Its a large printable of a number ONE that looks like street. They can race their car up and down and trace the number one!
I would recommend laminating this page, so you can use it over and over without any rips!
(here is the LINK if you'd like the printable to save in, and just print on a black piece of cardstock)

Spelling ONE practice

Dot ONE activity

One matching worksheet

One tracing activity

More number practice! {courtesty of}
(this includes up to 20, so if you are wanting to print only the one, make sure you select only the first page to print!)

For our sensory activity, I pulled out my big ol' bucket of beans. Normally Im the type to make things cute, but I havent decorated this popcorn bucket yet--its functional, just not pretty!
We have a puzzle with each number, so I hid a few and made sure to include the ONE..he had to dig through and find it. Then I just hid some other objects because he likes to dig around.
We also placed one bean on each circle in the dot activity printable!

Monday, September 6, 2010

The Letter A

Today is our first preschool lesson for the new school year! Every monday we will have a new letter of focus, today we are of course starting with A!

Here are the A worksheets we will be coloring and reviewing:
{by clicking on the activity, it will bring you to the direct download page or webpage}

A is for apple

(courtesy of

Letter A tracing page

(courtesy of

Transportation that starts with an A! {tracing activity}

Dot Letter and Apple Activity

A is for Ant!

(courtesty of confessionsofahomeschooler)

Our A "song" is "The Ants go Marching!" and the little project to go along with the song is this cut-out of a brown A {representing an ant hill} on green cardstock {representing grass} with brown finger prints {representing the ants} this is also a great counting activity--counting the ants marching, and their little legs. Briggy loved this so much {and Ollie--who was clapping along!} we sang it over and over again!

Here are his completed worksheets! We did some practice A's on the back, but all of these with the ants marching song, only took about 50 minutes. I planned on our "preschool" taking 2 hours, but then I remembered I the rest of the week I have a secondary activity planned, and mondays are just free coloring or whatever afterwards, because of FHE in the evening.

As we were tracing the letters for "Big A" as we traced We said "Up Up Up--Down Down Down and ACROSS!" He seemed to really understand that concept and followed the directions really well. For "little a" as we traced we said "aaaarouuuunnnndddd and down!" and he did really well with that too. on the back of the pages are a lot of his free style of the letters, and I was really impressed. After all the activities were completed I gave him one of his little notebooks and the first thing he drew was this:

okay, so at first it looked like an "H" because he didnt connect the tippy-top of the A. So I told him that the Up and Down line have to "kiss" otherwise, it was an H. So he made a line connecting them and made his "smooch" noise--cutest thing ever!

Family Home Evening:
Seeing that its Labor Day and we will be visiting friends, and then the boys will be meeting uncle Eric {who've they'll be meeting for the first time} we are going to have a quick lesson on family, and draw pictures for Uncle Eric's arrival. Our hymn will be "Families Can Be Together Forever" Not as structured as a regular FHE, but next week we'll be back on track!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

ABC Playgroup Party!!

I have been doing weekly letter lessons with Briggy for awhile now, but I've been really trying to drive home the idea of "school" and "lessons" with him the past couple weeks. I really want 10am-12pm to be our "school" learning time. I told him that we would have a big celebration to start off the school year to get really exctied about the alphabet and learning! He pretty much knows all his letters and numbers, but not 100%
Im hoping that all these activities throughout the year will solidify the foundation/basic principles, so by 3 1/2-4 years of age we can focus on more kindergarten lessons and reading! Both my sister and I were early readers {is 4 early anymore? I see those commericials with 9 month olds reading, so maybe he'll be considered a "late bloomer"}
The play group was a lot of fun. Sundays are usually the only day Briggy has interaction with other toddlers at our Church's nursery program, so its always a VERY BIG DEAL! when friends come and play. His excitement tends to get overwhelming, and typically he acts out wildly and is the opposite of calm until about an hour after everyone is gone. He goes into total sensory overload. He's happy, but its too much and it usually ends in temper tantrums. Today he was AMAZING. Listened wonderfully, sat still and participated in the ABC craft, played nicely {for the most part, he grabbed his toys from some of the kids, but no long lasting screams or bad behavior} Every day he suprizes me more and more with his behavior. He has really taken to structure and routine, as well as adequate deep pressure "squeezes" and exercise-time {all the time!} Over the past few months I have seen such a shift in his behavior and his attention span and focus getting sooooooooo much better. He is a great kid!
Okay, so it was a playgroup so I didnt want to over-do-it and go crazy with party details, because I can go overboard and thats not what this event was about. It was a kick-off to preschool-time but most importantly PLAY TIME!

I made peanut butter jelly cupcakes with peanut butter frosting! yummy. here is the links to the recipes:

Typical kid-friendly "after-school snacks"

I melted down a few boxes of crayons that I got for suupppper cheap with all the back-to-school sales going on into these alphabet crayon molds. [these are wonderful, and sooo cool! you can make molds of pretty much ANYTHING!]

My lame attempt at a banner 20 minutes before people were arriving---that wall just looked too bare! Im installing big shelves above the little locker drawer to hold all my preschool craft/workbooks in in the VERY NEAR future!

I really need to get better about this interactive blogging, because I should have been snapping shots of the kids working on their alphabet craft, but of course, I was in the "thick of it" monitoring my 2 1/2 year old Briggy with 3 markers in his hands, and trying my best to keep my eye on my in-to-everything-not-quite-walking 13 month old, Oliver.....and the camera was down stairs. Oops! I printed off the first letter of each of the kids names onto white cardstock and had different things for them to decorate their letters with--crayons, markers, pom-poms and pipecleaners! very fun!!!
There are many great alphabet printables, I like the size of these, and that they include the Upper and lower case on one page. Sometimes its nice to have both, sometimes its better to focus on one or the other...depends on the situation and lesson.
Upper & Lower Case Printables

Overall, it was a really nice time and I am so excited to start a more regimented daily lesson plan with Briggy. I have to work on all the loose ends this week, but we plan on next monday {i know, its labor day....but we are still going to get in our first lesson in the morning!} I plan on following this weekly schedule:

Monday: Letters (Evenings are Family Home Evening Lesson)
Tuesday: Numbers and Sensory-stimulating Activity
Wednesday: Colors and Exercise Activity
Thursday: Shapes and Book Activity
Friday: Recap of all 4 topics and related craft project
Saturday: File Folder game
Sunday: Sabbath related activity

It is my goal to update daily our lesson and all the resources that went into preparing the lesson, as well as having "File Folder Friday" where I will have a file folder idea and/or necessary tutorial on how to make it. They are fun for saturday, because if you have plans that require travel, they are perfect for on the go!

Monday night is a time our family {and members of my faith} set aside as Christ-centered family time called "Family Home Evening" or for short, FHE.
Regardless of your faith, I really think this concept is a GREAT idea. I will have lessons or links to lessons that I am following posted on Monday afternoons. They will have LDS references, but you can easily tailor them to suit your relgious preference. I am following our Church's nursery handbook to re-inforce the lesson being taught during Briggy's nursery-time at Church. A typical FHE {although they are never typical right now with two small children!} is a prayer to begin, a religious-themed lesson, an activity, a treat, hymn and closing prayer.

Honestly, this blog is meant to be a helpful place for moms and care-takers of toddler age children to get lesson and activity information and resource links--but most of all it is a way to get my booty in gear and stay structured and consistent. I feel I have a great responsibility to teach my toddlers the best I can and fill them with knowledge and fun. I pray I can do right by them, and that I may be a small help to any of you that may stumble upon this blog.


Sunday, August 22, 2010


I am a momma to 2 fantastic toddler-aged boys. Well, one honest-to-goodness toddler, Brigham who is 2 1/2 and my little guy who I suppose is considered a toddler {13 months} but is still my little baby! After calling on Occupational, Behavioral and Speech therapists a year ago, Brigham {aka Briggy} was diagnosed with a Sensory Processing Disorder which went hand in hand with his 6 month delay of speech. I felt like I had been a very hands-on mom from the beginning, but this catapuletd my efforts in helping Brigham as best as I could {along with wonderful therapists} to get him speaking and behaving better socially. Every day for hours and hours I would scour online for different activities, printables, books, etc. that not only addressed his "sensory" needs {that all kiddies need to some degree} but would get him to be excited about language and see it as a fun "game" For the past six months we have been primarily focusing on the alphabet--recognition of the letter, sound, matching letter to item, etc. and he has done LEAPS AND BOUNDS better with his attention to focus and understanding of the topic, as well as verbal communication. I am by no means a professional on the matter, so If anyone who is, that is reading something I explain--feel free to correct me! I have gathered a wealth of information from professionals, and other regular moms either homeschooling, or teaching their children with sensory disorders. This blog is meant to be a gathering of ideas and printables that I have found to be fun and helpful for my sons, as well as a daily blog of adventures and findings. All opinions and ideas are welcome as long as they are friendly and helpful!

August 31st I am hosting my church's playgroup for the toddler-aged kids and it is "ABC" themed. I planned on "kicking off" our families "school time" September 6th as well as this blog. I hope my ideas and links to great resources will be helpful to you and your little ones!