Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Camping and the Fall Sensory Bin

Today was a much better day than yesterday (overall, not just with school). Big Monkey was in a much better mood. So was I. Baby Monkey is always in a relatively good mood. He likes trouble, but is a happy baby. Today I caught Baby Monkey trying to help himself to the school supplies (he was going after tongs and scoops). He got his arm stuck trying.

Big Monkey tried all sorts of new things today. He started with the familiar. He requested matching number circles again. Luckily, that gave me some time to get out the other stuff. He had the first round done in seconds though. Then he practiced his scissor skills. Then we moved on to the new. I was surprised at how well Big Monkey did with counting lanterns and finding the number (he had 3 numbers in each box to choose from). He got every one right up to #6, which was the point where I dumped out the Little People toys for Baby Monkey and Big Monkey completely lost interest in counting lanterns. Oops on my part.

Then we counted fireflies in the night. I put a number in the corner of the paper and asked Big Monkey what the number was. He then counted out that number of fireflies and put them in the night sky. He really liked this activity. We did numbers 1-5 today.

I gave Big Monkey a F is for Fire coloring page and asked him if he wanted to color. To my surprise, he decided to trace the big and little F letters. He did a great job! After tracing, he decided to color them in a little bit. Here is Big Monkey with his traced letters:

The hit of the day though was the new sensory bin. I finally set up a sensory bin. The theme of this one is fall. It contains little fabric leaves, red beans, and white beans. I got all of these things at the 99 cent only store. I then put in several sets of tongs, a couple scoops, a small oil funnel, and some shaped ice cube trays (from IKEA) and let Big Monkey have at it. He LOVED the sensory bin. I think he spent at least 45 minutes playing in the beans. He scooped them into the funnel, picked individual beans up with tongs and transferred them into the ice cube trays, sorted leaves and beans, and so on. I actually had to tell him when needed to wrap up the sensory bin so I could pick up the beans.

The sensory bin was also a big hit with Baby Monkey. He eats everything though, so this required my constant attention on Baby Monkey to make sure he wasn't sneaking any beans into his mouth. This was also the main reason I was ready to wrap it up after 45 minutes.

Baby Monkey loved exploring though and found great fun in putting his hands into the beans and moving back and forth to make them make noise. Big Monkey did not like Baby Monkey being in the bin that much, but he was a good big brother and shared.

That wrapped up our morning of school. Baby Monkey slept through lunch though, so I needed one more activity to keep Big Monkey entertained while I fed Baby Monkey. The solution: finger painting!

It was a good day.

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