Gohan was sick all week, so he didn’t do much that required leaving his bed. At the same time, he wasn’t so sick that he needed my by his side, so this gave Miss Dora a unique opportunity to have extra quality time to focus on her. In addition, this week she decided that she did not need to nap all week. So this gave us even more time to spend together, though left me exhausted by the end of the day.
Fieldtrip – We went to the Seattle Aquarium this week. Since we were not working around her nap, we went in the early afternoon, which ended up being the perfect time to go, as it wasn’t so crowded. I don’t go to the aquarium very often, because it is usually so crowded that I feel claustrophobic, so I really enjoyed this trip. We also stumbled on some staff training, so we got to hear extra lectures and see the seals being fed, complete with our own little private seal show (which was shared with one other homeschooling family that happened to be there). Dora absolutely loved watching the seals.
After the aquarium, we enjoyed the waterfront for a while. We rode the antique carousel, saw ships being built, and ate at a bakery/café.
Practical Life – Practical life continues to be Dora’s big thing. She has most of her practical life materials put away with our big versions. So I have these mini-versions of kitchen supplies in all my drawers and so forth. She really is learning a lot about cooking and cleaning, for being only two years old.
Sensorial – Dora learned about fishing this week, in the vaguest sense of the word. We have this fishing puzzle from Melissa and Doug and she really enjoyed “catching” the fish. Most of the time she would use her hand to put the fish on the line and then carry it over to drop it off, still it worked many of her fine and gross motor skills.
I also found this color file folder game at File Folder Fun. She really, really liked this game. She could do almost all of the colors, except the white, gray, and tan. From what I have read about the Montessori Method, they first teach colors that are very different from each other, such as red, yellow, and blue. Then they get into the various shades of each color, such as, blue, lighter blue, a little lighter blue. and so on. As Montessori is based on child development, I am assuming that this fine color distinguishing is a skill that kids develop a little later. Of course, being the paranoid mom that I am, I did spend some time entertaining the idea that Dora was colorblind.
I also downloaded this fish-themed size sort from Confessions of a Homeschooler. This was a bit much for Dora. She just wanted to play with the fish and does not understand the idea of bigger and littler. I realized, too late, that I should have only given her two or three of the fish at first. I will try this again in a couple of months and not give her the whole set of fish at once.
I also downloaded the matching fish lacing card from Confessions of a Homeschooler, though Dora wasn’t too interested in that.
Math – Dora spends a lot of her time “counting” things. The only structured mathy thing that I did with her was this fish pattern block puzzle that I got from PreKinders. Dora did a really good job with the puzzle at first, but then got very “creative” (which is also a good job in its own way).
Language – I started to set up a alphabet box, which I read about Counting Coconuts. It is going to be a work in progress. Dora “helped” me to put the objects where they belonged, at which point Gohan and Tertia joined in the activities. Gohan and Tertia spent a lot of time playing with the little objects and explaining what they were to Dora. Tertia, being obsessed with animals and in a veterinary technician program, insisted that I call all the animals by their proper names. So there are no “birds” in Dora’s box, but Macaws, Cockatoos, etc. I have no “fox”, but there is an “arctic fox”. Even the insects are arranged by their proper names, as opposed to “beetle” or “bug”. Sigh… at least Dora’s vocabulary will be expansive, even if I can’t always remember the name of the creature.
We read some fish-themed books this week. Of note were The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister and Flotsam by David Wiesner. The Rainbow Fish is the popular tale of a fish who thinks too much of himself, because he has such pretty scales. He must learn a lesson from the wise old octopus. We also looked at other Rainbow Fish books, but the original was the only one Dora cared for much.
After reading the book, we enjoyed doing this Rainbow Fish floor puzzle.
Flotsam, like most, David Wiesner books was wordless and a bit strange. Dora liked looking at the pictures, but I’m not sure how well she understood what was happening. The story is about a boy who finds a camera that washes up from the sea. There is film inside the camera and the boy gets the film developed. When the film is developed, the boy cannot believe his eyes! The pictures are interesting, to say the least. The ending is a clever surprise, in typical of Wiesner fashion.
Culture – This week’s theme was fish (I bet you hadn’t guessed that yet, had you?). We finished up the Autumn Outdoor Hour Challenge #7.
We also spent some time going through some seashells. We talked about the starfish and how we had seen a live starfish the day before, which Dora wouldn’t touch. She was willing to touch the dead starfish though. We also talked about how the shells used to be the homes of animals.
Finally, I made Dora a fish sensory bag. I read about it at 123 Child. I put blue hair gel, plastic fish, and glitter in a Ziploc bag. Even my teens enjoyed playing with this. As a note, some gel started leaking out of the bag, despite me having “zipped” it shut, so I used a lighter to melt the opening shut. I didn’t melt where the Ziploc “zipper” is, but the plastic above the “zipper at the opening. If you do decide to try this, be careful as the bag did tend to want to catch on fire and if you have any hair gel that got on the outside, it could be very flammable (remember Michael Jackson’s hair catching on fire?). Anyway, you don’t have to get very close with the flame and the plastic will just melt right up and seal itself shut. After I did this, we had no more leaks.
Cooking – We did not do any special cooking this week. I did buy her this new Dora and Diego cookbook, which looks promising.
Crafts – We didn’t actually do any crafts this week either.