Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Meet Totoro

We have been tossing the idea of getting a puppy around for a while. So, when we found this guy we decided we would just go look. Does that ever work? Has anyone ever gone and just looked at a puppy? Meet Totoro our newest addition. He is an eight week old Malamute/German mix. He is a good mixture of playful and sleepy. He is just plain adorable. We love him already.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Gingerbread Picture Search

Last Friday, I got to go help the first graders make their gingerbread houses. They look forward to this day each year. These first graders dove into this project.
They piled their houses high with frosting and candy. Not to mention the frosting and candy that ended up in their tummies (and mine-yummy).
Each house was unique and the kiddos took pride in their work. It reminded me of doing this same project with Ryan and Emily. I thought it would be fun to show the houses that Ry and Em made in first grade too. So I started going through old pictures. I found a picture of Andrew's house he made in preschool.Look at the baby face. I kept searching and somehow I ended up in a folder of pictures of baby Ry.He loved that lion towel thing..I miss Provo and our old apartment and old times. When we were living there, I NEVER thought I would miss Provo. But I do. That's the power of old photos. Back to task, I soon realized that a first grade picture of Ry would not be in the same folder as these little Ryan pictures, so I skipped ahead and found these. I had to pause again. Cute little Em all dressed up. She loved princess dresses and babies. I also found this picture of Em all dressed up for picture day in Kindergarten. Emily in her early years of fashion. Now, she has put away her fancy dresses and can be found in sweatpants EVERY day. I decided I should just give up on the gingerbread houses. Crud, time is flying by these days!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Homework and family Unite!

As I have mentioned, I am going to the University of Minnesota to earn my Master's degree in Early Childhood Education and in Early Childhood Special Education. This has been a BUSY semester. I have had a ton of homework, but today I would like to share with you my most fun project yet.

The assignment was to find a child, get to know them and plan three activities/lessons based on their interests. I chose Fiona. I feel lucky to live so close to most of my nieces. It was great to spend good one-on-one with her. I had to put together a powerpoint, but have no idea how to post a powerpoint, so I am going to recreate the basics of it for you. Bottom line: I love these pictures of Fiona and I want to share my adorable niece with everyone.

Meet my niece, Fiona
Fiona is an out-going 31 month old. She loves playing with balls, trains and other toys. Her favorite places to go are grandma's house, the zoo and the library. She can be often found helping her mom and dad around the house.

Meeting One: Exploring Play-Doh

Fiona Quotes: "I do making tiny holes." "I have a duck." "It's spinning." "I'm screwing."

During our first meeting, Fiona explored different ways to make holes in the Play-Doh. I introduced different tools that would make different kinds of holes. She experimented with each of them. The Play-Doh drill was her favorite. She consistently went back to using this tool to make her holes in the Play-Doh.

Meeting Two: The Drill Set
Fiona Quotes: "Look Cathy, I'm doing it!"

Our second meeting's activity was based Fiona's interest in the Play-Doh drill. She gradually filled the entire board with bolts using the drill and a hand screw driver. While she worked, we talked about simple patterns, colors and counting.

Meeting Three: Making Cookies
Based on Fiona's fascination with tools and my knowledge that she likes to help in the kitchen, we made cookies during our last meeting.Fiona Quotes: "I'm stirring." "It's spinning." "I can tap it." "I made a big hole."

Fiona was able to add the butter, flour, sugar and egg. She used a spatula and an electric mixer to stir the dough. As soon as the dough was formed into a ball, Fiona began making big holes in the dough with her fingers (just like during meeting one).

Once the cookie dough was made, it was time to roll it out and cut the cookies.

Fiona's Quotes: "The big one is heavy." "I made a rocket ship." "I want to cook it."

Fiona wanted to use the tiny rolling pin. She cut out rocket ships, tiny hearts, mittens and stars. She then carefully transferred each cookie on the cookie sheet to bake them. While we were waiting for the to cook, Fiona told me the different ingredients she used to make the dough.

The powerpoint went with a super long, more detailed write up. I will spare you all those details.

Thank you Fiona for spending time with me. Let's do it again ASAP!