Saturday, April 30, 2011

Train Ride

For our transportation field trip this week we went on a ride on the light-rail train in town (TRAX).  The boys were thrilled by the whole experience.  They thought buying tickets, sitting and waiting for our train, and then riding the train were so fun!  It was really cute to see their huge eyes and giant grins because they got to ride on a "Choo-choo train"!!  The whole trip was just delightful and we were also blessed with beautiful weather for the whole morning (a huge feat this month). 
 All the boys waiting for the train to come.
Is it coming??
Riding the train!
A very excited EW riding the train.
 G and T show their excitement for being on a train.  G said, "I'm so happy to be on a train right now!"
 EM riding with his Mommy.
We rode downtown then got off at the old Union Train Station and let the kids look at all the cool pictures of trains on the walls and stain glass and run around to their hearts content- what a perfect thing for little boys who had been sitting so still for 20 minutes:)
After this we watched the fountains at the Gateway and the kids loved enjoying the beautiful day and watching the water.
We then went to the food court and got some ice cream cones.  The kids loved it even though it was early in the morning and it was a fun treat to have before we took the train back home.  (Oh, and we also took a little trip up and down the escalators which was also very exciting).
The whole gang with yummy ice cream.
 EM with a great ice cream face.
 EW taking his ice cream eating very seriously.
 C (EM's brother) enjoying his ice cream very much!
While we were waiting for the train for our ride back we sang, "The Wheels on the Bus" and then the modified "The Wheels on the Train" which was really cute.  The boys were also delighted when "Mr. Conductor" actually waved to them as the train pulled up. 

On the whole it was a great field trip and one those boys won't soon forget:)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


We had such a fun time in preschool today!!!  It was my last lesson, *sniff, but it was also one of my favorites.  I think it also helped that all the boys just love what we learned about today... Transportation! 
A special thank you to T's daddy for helping with this lesson since W was out of town.
Gathering Activity- Motor Works (plane, train, car, race car, motorcycle).  The kids had fun using the screwdriver to take apart and put back together these fun vehicles.
Circle Time- Weather and Pledge.  We discussed different modes of transportation- “If I am at my house and I want to go someplace else how could I get there?”  Walking, running, bike, car, bus, truck, airplane, train, boat,  motorcycle, space ship,  etc.   These are all modes of transportation- the boys got to practice saying this new vocabulary word.   We then did activities related to many different modes of transportation.
Bus- Read School Bus by Donald Crews then sang “The Wheels on the Bus”.  We also talked about the traffic safety lights that are in the books and what the different colors mean.  We then used cut out lights to play Red Light/Green Light.
Cars- To do a shape review we made different shapes on the floor with a piece or cord and gave each kid a different colored cut out car.  I then said this rhyme for them with each shape: Red cars on the track, drive around the ________ (shape name) then come on back! 

We then split the kids up and did CAR STATIONS-
1. Car Story- had a bucket filled with different items, and one car, and we then made up a story with the items that each kid drew out of the bucket.  Example- One day a (shovel) was driving down the road.  He stopped to pick up his best friend Mr. (whale).  They then went to the park and played with (the letter T), etc.  The kids actually LOVED this activity and laughed so hard each time they'd pick something out to add to the story.
2. Missing Car- T's Dad had a tray with 5 different colored cars on it.  The kids had to look at the cars then he would take one away and they had to guess which one was missing.  It was a fun memory game.
3. Car Trip Picture-  Each kid was given a piece of paper with a window drawn on it.  I talked about going on car trips and what they see when they look out the car window.  I wrote down each thing they mentioned and then they got to draw what they see in the window.  They turned out pretty cute and we put those in their blue books.
4. Counting Cars- Each boy got a paper with parking spaces and a number on it.  They had to fill up as many parking spaces as the number indicated with the matchbox cars.  They had fun driving the cars and trying to count and match their number.
Snack: Banana airplanes- We used graham crackers, peanut butter, plastic knives, and bananas to make banana airplanes!  We cut each banana in half then they put peanut butter on the top and bottom and stuck graham cracker wings on.  Super cute and the kids we quiet for about 5 minutes straight while eating their planes!  - Read “Freight Train” then after snack they can do Zip Track or Train Station- either station.
Trains- Read Freight Train by Donald Crews while the kids were eating snacks then let them have free time playing with the train set or with the Zip Track.  Those playing with the Zip Track then did physics experiments with T's Dad to see how steep they could make the track and still have the cars be able to make it over the hump.   They had a lot of fun experimenting and making hypothesises then trying it out to see what would happen.
Bikes- Read Bears on Wheels by Stan and Jan Berenstain and talked about bikes and all the different number of wheels different "bikes" can have.  We then talked about how when you ride in the car you don't have to make the car go, but when you ride a bike you make the bike go by using your feet.  We then did bicycle exercises on the ground which they thought was really fun (and they were pretty tired afterward).
Planes- Read Flying by Donald Crews and discussed where planes go.  
We then said an airplane poem while pretending to be airplanes:
Airplanes flying low
Airplanes flying high
Airplanes spin around
In the big blue sky
Airplanes flying fast
Airplanes flying slow
Airplanes spin around
Where will you go?
Airplanes looking down

Getting read to land

Put down your wheels

And land in the sand!
T's Dad then taught the boys how to make paper airplanes.  They colored their paper first then had to follow directions on how to fold the paper to make their airplanes.  The boys all did a really good job following directions and we just had to help them with a few of the trickier parts.  We then flew the airplanes around the room and they got to take them home!
Folding the paper...
Let them fly!
Books I used: I put together this lesson with suggestions from my two favorite preschool books: Story Stretchers  by Raines and Canady and Easy Daily Plans by Sue Fleischmann.
I also want to recommend all the Donald Crews transportation books.  We used the School Bus, Flying, and Freight Train for our lesson and also had Trucks and Sail Away to look at in Australia.  The boys LOVED those books and listened and watched very carefully for the whole stories!  Check them out from the library- they are great!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Zoo Animals

This picture is of the boys holding up their animals that they brought from home. It was fun to hear them talk about which one was their favorite. We sang the song "5 little monkeys". We also read the book "Goodnight Gorilla". Then we played charades and the boys got to act out different animals. We had a Zoo Field trip planned for last week but it got canceled because of the weather. Hopefully we will make it soon!
For the lesson we went on a Safari around our house. I had hung up different zoo animals in all the rooms and the boys got to go find them.Then we discussed each animal.

We made a bendable monkey for our craft. They all did a great job coloring, cutting and glueing.

Snack time was fun. I bought some Zoo animal crackers. They enjoyed guessing which animal they were about to eat.

The boys are holding up their Monkeys.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Bean Sprouts

For W's lesson on Spring and Seasons a month ago she gave each of the kids a bean to put in a baggie with a paper towel and instructions to water it each day until it sprouted.  Well, T and I put his bean by the kitchen window and faithfully kept it watered, but nothing happened!  I almost chalked it up to my severe brown thumb when one day, a few weeks later, we noticed that our bean had sprouted!!  We were very excited and continued watching it's progress over the next few days when one morning we woke up to see this...
This gigantic bean had grown so much that is was escaping from it's baggie!  We finally took it out and planted it in a little pot.
A few days later it looks like this!  We might need a bigger pot...
Did anyone else have success with their beans?