January 30, 2013

Penguins, Part 2

Hello!  I know you're all loving this weather, right?!  (You may hear just a *hint* of sarcasm at this point!)  One day it's 12 degrees, the next it's 50 and currently, we've got showers of icy, cold rain falling down!  Wonder what kind of weaher is in store for tomorrow?
Today, we had lots of fun learning more about penguins.  We read the book:
Penguin Pete and Little Tim
In this book, we learned that penguin babies are called chicks, and that penguins are birds that have feathers and wings, but do not fly.  They do love to swim though!
In art, we finished our cardboard roll penguin craft.  My hope is that your child will play with his/her penguin at home, and that you will hear some penguin facts during playtime.  For instance, penguins like cold weather, and they love to eat fish!

Our math center had two games for the children to play.  This one is a Penguin Mommy and Chicks math match, in which we used black and white unifix blocks as the chicks and Emperor penguin cutouts at the mommies.  We numbered the moms 1-10, and had the kids match the same number of chicks to the mom.

The other math game was a penguin roll and cover, which I found online, but now can't remember where!  So, to whoever created this cute game, thanks!  The kids rolled a die (numbered 0-5), and placed the same number of goldfish crackers on the penguins.  What do you think happened when they were finished with the game?  Yep - the kiddos got to munch their goldfish!

I also like to incorporate simple science experiments whenever I can, and I thought the sugar cube experiment would be perfect to complement our penguin study.  We stacked up the cubes in a pie plate, and pretended they were icebergs for the penguins.  Each small group of kiddos chose the color they wanted for the water in the pitcher, dropped in some food coloring, and poured the water in the pie plate.  Then the magic happened!  The children were amazed to watch the sugar cubes change color and begin to dissolve.  When I asked them what was happening, several said, "It's melting!" or "It's breaking!"  They are so smart!
We also talked about how the sugar cubes absorb the water, like sponges, and then the water dissolves the sugar.  These experiments are very hands-on for the children, and when they get to participate by doing, it makes the activity more meaningful and interesting for them!
Other activities today included:
  • playdough and easel
  • dry erase writing and drawing
  • block room
  • penguin action rhyme
Our closing story was:
Snow Dance
And for those of you who are still trying to figure out who Chilly Willy is, take a look here for a throwback:
Have a wonderful Wednesday!


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