Thursday, January 19, 2017

Helper Dads

This was such a fun day, we learned all about Dad's that help raise their young.  One of the most rare parenting arrangements is of course the seahorse.  The male seahorse has a pouch that he carries the eggs in until they are ready to hatch.

We started this Mother Goose Time topic like we do every other topic, with a discussion question.  I asked, "how can dads help their unborn babies?"  Another question asked "How does your Dad carry you?"  We talked about how Dad's carry us in their arms and take care of us.  This discussion got me thinking about the movie "March of the Penguins" and the emperor penguin dads who sacrifice so much to hatch their egg.

I searched to see if I could find the movie "March of the Penguins" free on any streaming service and I actually found it on Vudu.  I had no idea they did this, but they have movies on there that are free with ads.  The ads, aren't so great, as in clean.  But I muted them and that helped a bit.  There is no way to skip them.  Still, it was a great movie to share with my boys, 8, 5, and 2.

Those emperor penguins are dedicated parents, they work so hard to bring that little life into the world.  The Dad is responsible for the hatching portion, going over 4 months with out food before they are able to return to the sea.

But enough about penguins.  Here are our adventures in seahorses.  I set up the invitation to create and invited, but no one wanted to create at the moment.
They were most excited about the seahorse game.  We first practiced carrying a bear in our shirt pouch like a Daddy seahorse carries his eggs.

To play the game we rolled the color die and moved to that color space.  Each space had a number and we would draw that many baby seahorse cards.  Whoever had the most baby seahorses at the end of the game won!
 I think this Daddy seahorse is protecting his babies.
We were supposed to use pattern block pieces as our game pieces but we chose bears.
Lachlan ended up winning the game with 23 pieces.  The neat part though, was when we counted out the seahorses during each turn Adam would count along.  It was great counting practice as well as that one to one correspondence thing.
On this day, the theme poster and the look and find glasses were also introduced.  I set them out at Adam's level for exploration.
No one got to the invitation to create until the next day.  Adam sits at the table with his big brothers and says "teach me how to do this Mommy."  He often, only wants to draw with a pencil on white paper, like brothers.
Here he is working on his white paper.  His brothers were doing a color by number with double math facts.

I kept asking, and eventually he conceded and decided to try making a seahorse.  I showed Adam how to cut off the outside rim of the paper plate by following the circle part on the inside.  I cut quite a ways because I really didn't think he would be able do it himself.  But he is opinionated and made it clear he wanted to do it by himself.  I was, as always, surprised by how well he did.  As he cut, I laid the pieces out to make the shape of a seahorse, then handed him the glue.
He glued some of it down and a few of the color squares down before he got board and moved on.  But that's okay!  I can save it, and let him work on it some more or just call it a day, because even the little time he spent was valuable.

I just can't believe, after so many years, I haven't learned my lesson.  I should know by now that a child will surprise you, especially if you give them the freedom to do so.

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