Sunday, January 31, 2016

We Can't Stop Leave the Safari Yet...

Tonight I was supposed to stop our Mother Goose Time Safari Unit. I opened our new Food and Fitness Unit for the month of February and put it in my file set-ups, just like I do at the start of every month with every new unit. I got the calendar out and put the adorable fruit and veggie manipulatives out for the kids to start playing with. The new Dance 'n Beats is ready to be played and sitting next to the DVD player. The new CD is next to the CD player waiting for Strong B and Tiny B to play every single song about 347 times.

But there's a problem...I cannot bring myself to stop the Safari unit yet! This weekend we finished up the fourteenth day, but we still have six days to go. This is most certainly not unusual for us. Depending on our month and how healthy we are, we will often have lessons left over that we haven't covered. Tiny B and Strong B have both been sick this week with colds and this hampered us a bit. Our typical weeks always include speech and occupational therapy plus a half-day of school for Tiny B, and these are just her school-related activities. Mother Goose Time is the only curriculum that we follow, but she is also doing these other necessary things, and I have to find a balance.

I simply put the unfinished lessons in a box with the teacher's manual and I will keep them for a time when we are ready and have enough time to learn more about Winter, Fall, Transportation, Friends and Feelings, etc. Usually the excitement of the next unit takes over and I have no problem putting away the unused lessons. This time there was something seriously magical about this unit for us. Truly, I think it's because our field trips to the Safari Park really brought it all to life for us. The CD and Dance 'n Beats songs were full of African beats and beautiful animals. It just had such an "exotic feel" to us that it truly transported us to the plains of Africa.

Tonight I went through the remaining six days which include food, grass, birds, water, beetles, and trees, and picked out the activities that I felt would be really beneficial and just plain fun! Then we're going to finish up the unit with a closing field trip to the Safari Park (our fourth time in four weeks!) where we will summarize what we've learned and do some kind of culminating activity while we're there (I'm thinking a "What We Learned" chart/collage with hand-drawn pictures).

I am so very excited to start Food and Fitness, which as you know, holds a special place in our heart due to the fact that Tiny B has weaned from her feeding tube in July. I have secretly been dreading this unit due to the fact that I didn't want to overwhelm her with food, but now I know that she is ready for it! Stay tuned for lots of eye-opening moments for Tiny B this month!

Now, on to tell you about a few things that we did this week...

We made Masaii huts and did role-playing with Masaii Tribe members as well as safari animals. We also used a storyboard to take turns telling stories. Long long loooooooong stories. Ha! Five -year-olds sure enjoy telling stories.

We did a concentration type game with elephants and colors and eye shapes.

We made African shaker sticks and danced around to that beautiful CD that I mentioned earlier and put on a show for daddy.

I have this wall in our family room school area where I hang their art work for the month. I know it's somewhat tacky to keep it in our family room but I absolutely love it. I love the mixture of Mother Goose Time art and the art from Strong B's preschool. The kids are so proud of their work and they take this work down every single day to play with it (Believe me, I know this because I find it scattered around the house and am constantly rehanging it!).

I  don't want to take this month down. Such great memories and such beautiful work. However, the time will come in the next few days when I will take it down and I will make room for new memories and new adventures. It's somewhat symbolic of our lives with our children. Time moves on, things come to an end, but new adventures begin. Time passes. It's beautiful and sad and exciting all at the same time.

*I receive Mother Goose Time curriculum in exchange for my honest sharing of experiences, resulting from our personal use. All opinions/thoughts are my own and are in no way influenced by others.

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