Saturday, February 4, 2012

Programs We Incorporate

Our Routine Goal:
* MORNING BATH w/bath instruments and colorful letter/numbers (with joey we put together words and work on math, with kaelie right now we are working on colors)
* BRAINY BREAKFAST w/LM & LR, followed by YBCR, which we call "Reading Time", thanks to his love for Signing Time
- Mondays: Playgroup @ Healthy Families (consists of 1 hour of free play, followed by art craft, then cleanup time, snack time and then circle time, which is usually some sort of music & movement activity, ending with storytime and a goodbye song with a sticker or stamp)
- Tuesdays: Stroller Strides
- Wednesdays: Playgroup @ Healthy Families (same as Monday)
- Thursdays: Playgroup @ Healthy Families (same as Monday)
- Fridays: Stroller Strides & Gymnastics
- Saturdays: Soccer (although this is a trek for us - 1 hour for his age group, so lately we've just been doing outside play at a park or in the backyard)
- Sundays: ASL Church
* LUNCH & LEARN: Learn typically consists of a few phrases or minutes of review of whatever we're working on, whether addition, reading, sight words, music appreciation or chords.  if we're home, this may be time for a video too, such as signing time, mandarin mickey, your child can discover ... when we get tweedle wink and kinderbach, this will be incorporated here.  if the day is beautiful, we go outside before, during, or after lunch too.  even if the weather isn't so great, i try to get at minimum 20 minutes outside with the kids each day.  typically, it's considerably more, though.
* AFTERNOON ACTIVITY: extension of learning time with solo play time worked in, depending on the kids.  solo play, sometimes turns into play with one another or with me too.  this time could be reading books (with or without an audio pen), legos, blocks, wood train set, piano play, tablet time (educational/fun activities that encourage thinking, reading, writing, etc).  Lately, I would like to see this time more organized/focused (as in, we'll still do a bit of everything, but try to gear it more towards a specific activity), so I'll put the ideal in writing here:
- Mondays: Piano Time/Music Appreciation
- Tuesdays: Coop School (3 hours with kids of similar age in various activities, including play-dough & sticker crafts)
- Wednesdays: Piano Time/Music Appreciation
- Thursdays: Pool play
- Fridays: Piano Time/Music Appreciation
- Saturdays: Soccer/Social Sports
- Sundays: Pool play

Truth be told, life at this age is about learning, and it all gets meshed together a bit.  For example, while we're making muffins in the morning, we talk about the cup being 1/4, 1/3, 1/2, etc full of milk.  Or if we're eating grapes we will mention things like, '2 grapes in this hand, plus three grapes in that hand ... all in your mouth, now - that makes 5 grapes! 2 + 3 = 5! yay!' i just read that another mom uses multiplication with legos, such as 'pass me the 2x3 lego'. i like that idea.  I love art, but paints are so messy! I leave them for bath time, which is when they get a bit of writing on the wall time too.  We do a lot of singing & dancing, around the house, in the tub, in the car, as well as listening to a variety of music, including classical, new age, opera, country, hiphop, salsa, reggaeton, adult alternative, christian, etc.  Everything with our schedule as of late has been a bit chaotic, so I'm hoping to create more structure to ensure that we tap on a bit of everything and don't get overcome by the lazy bug.

Side note: laughter is so key.  yes, there are times where discipline has to be enforced - i believe that it's important for them to learn cause and effect, but each day i try hard to get both kids to laugh.  when you think about how it's their nature to be happy, it's not too hard.  i find that the hardest part is in dealing with my own moods. it's easy to get overwhelmed with obligations and lack of energy.  this month i will be buying a calendar for them to put in their room so that we can do a better job of keeping track of everything. can't wait!

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