We had a late start with March’s lessons and just seemed to never get into a good rhythm. Thus, I decided to get a jump start on our Bees & Butterflies lessons from Mother Goose Time. Butterflies are my daughter’s second favorite animal, so I knew she would be thrilled. My son meets each month’s theme with great enthusiasm and this month was no different!
Our first lesson focused on “Home” and we spent the day talking about beehives. There were two parts of the lessons the kids LOVED. The first was an obvious choice, painting, but the other surprised me–the monthly name tag.
Each month’s curriculum provides a nametag for the children to practice writing their names. For the first five months, I simply wrote their names and they traced them. Then I started putting dots for my son as clues on where to start his letters. Last month, he mastered writing his name legibly! Not to be out done, my daughter has been desperately trying to write her own name. Today, after tracing her name once, she wrote it several times on her own! Both kids were giddy with excitement and wrote their names multiple times on both sides of the name tag provided and then asked for additional paper to practice. Then they decided to try to write each others’ names, some attempts were more legible than others but they were so proud!!
The other favorite part of the day was Beehive stamping. We talked about beehives and what is inside. Included in the lesson was a paper beehive and bubble wrap. They were still excited about the name writing exercise and wrote their names on the beehives before covering everything with paint! The kids were supposed to use the bubble wrap to paint the beehive. Although they were fascinated with the bubble wrap and trying to pop it but didn’t enjoy painting with it. At one point, they were using the beehive cutout to transfer paint onto construction paper. However, they mainly used their hands. After the beehives were soaked with paint, they spent a great deal of time painting the construction paper and the paper plates I gave them as palettes. My daughter even did a little impromptu color mixing experiment to see what colors we could make. There was such copious amounts of paint involved, I am not sure when the paper will dry to allow us to finish the craft!!
The next activity was an adorable beehive rhyme. The lesson included a poster with the words and illustration and then an activity to transform a simple rhyme into an interactive learning experience. My son cut out paper bees and attached Velcro stickers to the back. Then we decided where the Velcro should attach on the poster. The Velcro stickers were strong and worked those fine motor skills! We sang the rhyme and counted using both the bees and our fingers. My son was very interested in the mechanics of the Velcro and kept attaching and detaching the bees from the poster. Then we took turns hiding the bees around the room and then searching for them. I think all the Easter egg hunts inspired them to be more creative with their hiding.
One of this month’s manipulatives are attribute blocks. Usually I introduce the manipulatives a few days before starting lessons but this month I waited until indicated in the teacher’s guide. For our final activity, we were to use the blocks to explore hexagons. The children were encouraged to build a tower, count the sides of the shapes, identify the hexagons, and finally create a beehive design. Unfortunately, by this point the kids were getting tired and both wanted to play with the lacing beads that were also included. My son indulged me but I look forward to observing them explore these blocks more in the coming weeks.
As a working mom, I don’t usually add much to the already impressively comprehensive Mother Goose Time curriculum but I have so many ideas for this month!! Follow along as we fly into the wonderful world of Bees & Butterflies!