Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Rainforest Adventure - A Picture Story

Week 1 of Rainforest Adventure was all about the different layers of the rainforest.
  • Forrest Floor
  • Understory
  • Canopy
  • Emergent Layer
Day 1, as with most months on the first day, we got out our new name tags and wrote our names on them.  We explored our new Theme Poster and we finished up the day with a Rainforest Collage.  We learned the basics about a rainforest, what it is and where they are.

Day 2 we talked about wet versus dry dirt as we worked on our Wet and Dry Art project.  The dirt in a rainforest after all is most likely wet all of the time.  Mother Goose Time provided us yellow and orange chalk and a dark green piece of card stock paper.  First the kids drew on the paper with dry chalk.
Then we added a bit of water to the fun.  They dipped their chalk in the water and then drew on the paper to see what would happen.
Day 3 we learned about the Understory.  We also got our new manipulative for the month, monkeys!  We had so much fun hooking them all together and counting.
We hooked them all together and counted 24.  We could have lost a couple before we counted, but I think we got all of them.  Not sure.
 You can see here that Peter is wearing his Grateful Friendship Bracelet as he counts.  We talked about gratefulness and what it means and what we are grateful for when we were at the table.  This is of course a good topic for this month of November where we celebrate Thanksgiving.
We talked about what someone might wear when walking through the jungle and I asked the boys to draw a picture of themselves on the front of the My Little Journal.  They didn't want to, so in an effort to encourage them to try, I decided to draw myself on the front of the extra journal we had.  I looked at the explorer on the Theme Poster and tried to work off of Chris Lensch's work.  Chris is the talented artist behind Mother Goose Time's amazing graphics.  I was pretty proud of my work, but little did I know, this would upset Lachlan very much as he tried to draw himself just like Mommy did.  Won't try that again.  Eventually Lachlan calmed down enough to let me walk him through the drawing of himself and how to make it look like Mommy's.  Peter on the other hand, didn't care at all and he went off on his own design.  Turned out pretty awesome I think. 

Day 4, we learned about the Canopy and introduced the letter M. 
MGT provided us with these bug stickers and leaf cut outs.  They also gave us paper bags and I had Lachlan go outside and look for bugs and also collect leaves and grass.  When he came back we decorated the leaves with bugs and cut out a strip from his paper bag that we twisted to make the vine. 
I got out the Letter Set for Mm, which included two phonics cards, a mushroom and a monkey.  We talked about the letter, practiced the sound and came up with a long list of /m/ words.  Then I hung the letter M up on the wall.

Day 5 we were introduced to a new character, Chimidyue (chim-ID-yoo-a).   
Chimidyue's story is from the Takuna tribe of South America.  The Takuna live in the upper Amazon River area.  They have rich tradition of storytelling.  The tale of Chimidyue is unique because it features a female as the main character. (As explained in the back of the book)
This folktale was retold my Leslie Falconer and illustrated by Chirs Lensch.  It's so neat to expose my boys to other cultures from around the world.  Not only did we get to read this wonderful story but we got to bring the story to life as we chased butterflies through the rainforest while playing the folder game provided by MGT.
I love to save these folder games and put them in well, a folder, to take with us when we travel.  They take up so little room and are perfect for any down time.  

The Chasing Butterflies game reminded me a bit of Chutes and Ladders because of the logs.  If you land on the space with the log you got to climb it up to the square above you.  This game was such a hit with the boys I posted on Facebook to see if any of my friends had an old version of Chutes and Ladders lying around.  I actually had a friend give me a brand new one they never opened and never used!  I forgot how great a tool board games are for learning - counting, colors, turn taking, how to lose gracefully and not fight with your siblings.  All great lessons that can be learned and great time spent together. 

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