Elyse is 9 months old and Kealan is almost 25 months old.
So after months of planning the day had finally arrived for Kealan’s tot school to begin. 36 themes will span the next 52 weeks with structured play and learning activities pulled together from the web, mostly Pinterest. Totschool began with an ‘all about me’ topic covering body parts, feelings, senses and the letter f.
Monday – In the morning Kealan investigated the playroom set up and pointed out the “small sad face” sticker…and then demanded breakfast.
When Elyse went down for her nap we began with dot markers. Once he got used to them he did amazingly well dotting the feet on the letter f. He really enjoyed himself. We talked about the letter f and counted toes.
I cut a foot shape out of sticky back plastic and Kealan was set free with glitter, his favourite. However, turning my back for a moment was not a good idea.
During the day we played with Mr potato head, talked about feelings and coloured. With daddy working late there wasn’t much chance for any big activities but both Kealan and Elyse loved the baby einstein head to toe dvd.
Nanny sent through a lovely pic of elyse’s visit with her in the afternoon.
Tuesday – is usually martins day off so I’m not planning on doing much tot school work on this day. So the day was filled with the very exciting trip to tesco and then free play. When I say free I mean Kealan telling me to sit and get out toys and then repeatedly shouting “mummy play” even if I’m doing my busy doing my best to recreate a major traffic accident using his cars and fire engines etc (well what else do you do with a bunch of cars and emergency vehicles??) However, in the evening Kealan literally dragged me to the table asking to do dot markers and having run out of ‘on theme’ dot marker sheets I delved in to another topic, bugs. He did really really well with them and I can’t wait to order proper do-a-dot markers for him to use.
Elyse is enjoying the tot school table and grabs something off it each time we are in the playroom. Mr potato head is a favourite but the big smile is for daddy arriving home.
In the evening we had a ‘make a face bath’ which I had prepared during nap time with foam pieces and sticky back paper. I was impressed that Kealan placed the eyes, nose and mouths in the right places but whilst he seemed to really welcome something different to do in the bath he only concentrated on it for a short while. I’ll leave it up for tomorrow night and then change to something else.
When the babies were in bed I prepared for Wednesday’s play date with poppy and Oscar. I always like visitors to leave with a little something and this time I made play dough filled balloons with happy and surprised faces, emotion stickers, foam hands and feet and a little bag containing sweeties (lips and teeth).
Wednesday – play date day. Kealan was not in good form. He has a little cold and as usual the behaviour has deteriorated. Because he’d very much enjoyed mixing the practise salt dough (for the play date activity) the evening before that was all he wanted to do. We’d ended up letting him eat his dinner standing in his fun pod mixing he was that in to it!
So, although I hadn’t planned it as the first activity, we started by mixing the salt dough for our keepsake handprints. They all enjoyed this but Kealan was getting more and more worked up about which bowl or spoon he had and eventually it escalated to tears and him not making a handprint at all. Poppy and Oscar however made beautiful prints which I will bake and they can’t paint the next time they come. Elyse’s from our trial run the night before turned out quite well.
After a quick tidy we filled in some ‘all about me’ sheets. Kealan now knows his hair is blonde, his eyes are blue and he is 2. But I couldn’t pretend this exercise was particularly successful!
At lunch time Kealan asked to have a “big boy cup” like Oscar and didn’t spill a drop. I’m going to try to give him a cup now when he is at the table.
And after dinner he wanted “kealies scissor” and tried and tried to understand how they worked. Eventually he managed to find a way to cut the paper as long as I held it tight so we will keep practising.
When Elyse had her nap we carried on with tot school. I drew around Kealan on our paper roll and when I asked him where a certain body part would be he scribbled on the paper in the right place (although some times he got muddled up and drew on himself rather than on the paper!)
And then it was time to go to mother and toddlers. We all love it there. Everyone is lovely and we always have a wonderful time. And for the first time I saw Kealan initiate play with another child. He was sitting at the tables waiting for snacks and he rolled the toy car he had to another boy, who rolled it back. He passed it back again and the boy passed it further up the table. It carried on like this until the food arrived and was so sweet to watch. The small things that make a mummy smile!
In the evening we played dominoes for the first time, worked on matching using feeling faces and made buns together.
And had a feelings themed bath using the foam faces I made. We talked about each face and he could describe what each one might be thinking. Strangely he responds to the surprised face by saying “what’s going on…its henry (the Hoover)!!!!
So this was pretty much where tot school ended for the week. Kealan got sicker and sicker through Friday, Saturday and Sunday so we didn’t really do any ‘school’. Although he did sit up at the table to colour a number of time and we talked about how he was feeling. The weekend work id planned on the 5 senses will have to be slotted in somewhere else.
On Friday we made a circle with all the cars (I’m truly running out of “play cars” ideas)!
On Sunday morning we did some work on shapes while we coloured and he correctly identified circle, square, triangle, heart, moon, star so now we are working on hexagon. But really the day was spent with a very sick and sad baby curled up watching Ben and Holly. He did not eat a single bite today and refused even smarties. Elyse got substantially sicker today too. She was off her food a little and very unsettled. By the evening she just sat on my lap and hardly moved.
And so I doubt tot school week 2 will commence in the morning but I’ve set out the table and printed out some materials just in case.
Tot school week 2 – construction.