Friday, November 18, 2011

Ten Fat Turkeys

Ten Fat Turkeys by Tony Johnston

Gathering: Turkey Hats 
We found these super cute turkey hats on Family Fun's website.  We made a couple of modifications to better meet the needs of our group.  We used their template to cut out all the pieces, but we stapled in some places that they glued.

Materials Needed: Construction Paper, cereal box rectangles, paper grocery bag, Googly Eyes, Stapler, Glue Sticks

1-Cut out the pieces for the turkey hat BEFORE class, using the pattern found on the Family Fun Website.

2-Measure your child's head and use the stapler to make a headband with the grocery bag strips.

3-Glue the feathers on the back of the hat.  Glue the wings, one on each side.

4-Glue the beak, eyes, and waddle onto the circle face.

5-STAPLE the cardboard neck onto the hat and then staple the face to the neck so that it is 3-dimensional.

6-Wear your hat and do a NOODLE DANCE!

Circle Time: Ten Fat Turkeys by Tony Johnston

 "Wibble Wobble, Gibble, Gobble. Do a Noodle Dance! Ten Silly Turkeys sitting on a fence!"

We read Ten Fat Turkeys by Tony Johnston. This is a new book to me.  It is a VERY silly book with funny rhymes, bold and goofy pictures.  The kids giggled as each turkey fell off the fence, one at a time, trying to do something really crazy (like roller skate or swan dive).  The length is perfect for our twos and young threes.   There is no moral lesson, no deep meaning, and I don't think it is going to win any awards.  But the pictures tell the fun story and it made our kids (and adults) laugh, and that in and of itself holds merit for me. 

We sang turkey songs during circle time, of course! 

Hello Mr. Turkey (If you are happy and you know it)

Hello Mr. Turkey, how are you, how are you? (clap twice)
Hello Mr. Turkey how are you, how are you? (clap twice)
With a gobble, gobble, gobble and a wobble, wobble, wobble (clap twice)
Hello Mr. Turkey how are you how are you?

Thanksgiving Day

"Said, Mr. Turkey, I want to play. Gobble, Gobble, Gobble, Gobble, Gobble.
But soon it will be Thanksgiving Day. Gobble, Gobble, Gobble, Gobble.
Folks all say that means great fun, but I think I'll run, run, run.
And hide until the day is done. Gobble, Gobble, Gobble, Gobble, Gobble.

Turkey Hunt Flannel Board Activity

I have had this poem since I student taught 16 years ago.  I wish I knew who to give credit for.  

I printed turkey pictures off on the colors of construction paper mentioned in the hunt.  After I said each verse, a child came and chose that color and place it on the board.  (My board is getting pretty matted, I think I need a new one for Christmas).  When the moms were packing up to go home, the kids came back to this activity again.

I'm going on a turkey hunt, just for fun.

Don't need a bow and arrow, don't need a gun.

I'm going on a turkey hunt, so up and out of bed.

I'm looking for a turkey with his feathers painted RED!

I'm going on a turkey hunt. You can come too.

Let's look for the turkey with its feathers painted BLUE!

I'm going on a turkey hunt. It might take all day.

I need to find a turkey with its feathers painted GRAY!

I'm going on a turkey hunt, my eyes are so keen.

I'm sure to spot a turkey with its feathers painted GREEN!

I'm going on a turkey hunt. Id' better not wink,

Or I might miss the turkey with its feathers painted PINK!

I'm going on a turkey hunt, that bird's a funny fellow.

Especially the one with its feathers painted YELLOW!

I'm going on a turkey hunt. I think I see a track.

It must be the turkey with its feathers painted BLACK!

I'm going on a turkey hunt. I'll look all around,

Until I find that turkey with its feathers painted BROWN!

I'm going on a turkey hunt. I'll look all night.

Until I find that turkey with its feathers painted WHITE!

I'm going on a turkey hunt, I've spotted a turtle.
I must keep looking until I find a turkey painted PURPLE!

I'm going on a turkey hunt. It hasn't been boring.

I'm hunting for the last turkey with his feathers painted ORANGE!

Well, I went on a turkey hunt, just for fun ,

And I found those turkeys ~ each and every one!

Art: Handprint Bean Turkey 

I fell in LOVE with this adorable turkey I saw on The Idea Room. I was so excited to have our kids do this one!  Hers were beautiful. But alas, sometimes we do crafts, and they don't turn out the way I thought.  Not that I don't think our children's art work is beautiful, but this time it didn't turn out quite the way I pictured it would.  I think our problem was, we chose to trace the KID's hands for our turkeys.  They were just a little too small to actually tell they were turkeys after we added all the pretty beans and corn.  Or maybe the kids added too much?  Not sure.  But I think the key would have been to use MOMMY's hand and then let the kids create the collages.

Materials Needed: Paper plates, pencils, glue, a variety of beans, lentils, and dried corn.  Spiral noodles for the waddle.  (you don't need the staplers, they were just still there from the turkey hats).

1-Trace a hand (probably a mom hand) onto your paper plate.

2-Apply glue just on the inside of the handprint.

3-Create a collage using the beans, lentils, and corn.

4-Add a turkey noodle waddle.  (Then do a NOODLE DANCE)!

Snack: Turkey Gobbler Fruit Kabobs

Our area was out of melons the week of our Turkey Mommy and Me!  We ate the fun kabobs, pictured, but alas, we had no melon to create the body.  We also had yummy popcorn and pumpkin marshmallows! However what we had planned on making this guy.  You can find the directions here.

Activities: Turkey Pokey and Turkey Hop  

Turkey Pokey (to the tune of Hokey Pokey) Let the children pretend to be turkeys. Have them stand in a circle, and sing: You put your right wing in, You put your right wing out, You put your right in And you shake it all about. You do the Turkey pokey and you turn yourself around. That's what its all about! Gobble Gobble!  (Continue with left wing, Your tail feathers, drumsticks, beaks and of course at the end you put your whole turkey in)!

Turkey Hop (The song and instructions are found at macaroni soup).

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus

Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems

Gathering: Shape Bus 

Materials Needed: construction paper and glue sticks

1-We used the pattern found here on the All Kids Network site.

2-Cut out the pieces for the activity before class.
3-Allow the children to assemble the bus using the pieces provided.


Read Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems

If you have followed my blog for long,you know that I LOVE Mo Willems!  And this is a perfect read aloud for Twos and Threes!  Pigeon begs the reader to allow him to drive the bus. He pleads,he bargains, and he demands.  The children had so much fun telling the Piegon "NO!" after each page! 

Of course we had to  sing “The Wheels on the Bus.” We added a verse  to the end, and we let the Pigeon drive the bus.  "The Pigeon on the bus, he drives, drives, drives..."

Art:  Handprint Pigeon

Materials Needed:Light Blue paint, large google eyes,yellow paper beaks,white construction paper collar, and orange crayons

1-Make a handprint with the blue paint.

2-Add a google eye,beak, and collar.

3-Draw two legs.

We found this great craft idea here on Creating and Teaching.  

Snack: Pigeon Rice Krispie Treats and Cheese Buses

These were so easy and so cute! Make your favorite rice krispie recipe and add just a couple of drops of blue food coloring. Shape into balls to make the pigeons' heads.  Add candy corn beaks and chocolate chip eyes!  

We used a bus cookie cutter to cut yellow cheese buses.

Activity: Let the Pigeons Drive the Bus

Create a 2 sided traffic sign (one side red for stop and one side green for go)

We let the children play a modified Red Light, Green Light.  We let them pretend to drive the bus when it was green and had them stop when the sign was red.  No one was sent back to the start.  They just had fun running.   They also took turns holding the sign.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Freight Train

Freight Train by Donald Crews 

Gathering Activity: Train Play 


 Our little engineers had fun playing with our wooden train tracks and trains.  I also had train themed books for them to look at together.   Because sharing can be difficult at this age, I set up several small train sets, instead of one large one.  This insured a happy play time with the trains and reduced the frustration of train crashes when two trains come from opposite directions on the same track.  Or when one two year old wants to rebuild the tracks as another two year old is just about to reach the bridge!   It worked beautifully.  They moved from train set to train set.  Sometimes 2 children chose to play at one together, sometimes they chose to play alone.   But there were no disagreements.  The gathering activity lasted a little longer than normal, because they were so focused on play and enjoying themselves.  As is always our rule at Mommy and Me, we let the children set the pace of the morning. 

Circle Time: Freight Train by Donald Crews

We read Freight Train by Donald Crews.  This is a very simple book with very few words on a page.  The story introduces each train car, one by one, introducing its color and the kind of train car it is, as the train moves slowly down the track.  The book is a Caldecott Honor Winner.


After reading the story, we retold the story using flannel board pieces using these cute pieces I bought on etsy.  You could also easily make your own.   Each child was allowed to come and choose on of the train cars.  When I called his color, he came forward to place the train car on the flannel board.

Of course we had to sing fun train-themed songs!  I had a train whistle, which made a fun addition to our music time. 

“Little Red Caboose”
Little red caboose chug, chug, chug
Little red caboose chug, chug, chug
Little red caboose behind the train
Smoke stack on its
Back, back, back, back
Coming down the
Track, track, track, track
Little red caboose behind the train.

“Down by the Station”
Down by the station
Early in the morning.
See the little puffers
Standing in a row.
See the station master
Turn a little handle.
Chug, chug, chug, chug,
Off they go!

Art: Egg Carton Trains 

With 3 train obsessed kids, I have done my share of train crafts these past few years, but I had never seen this one before on the Getting Messy with Ms Jessi blog.  I loved it, and couldn't wait to try it!  It was a huge success with our little group!

Materials Needed: Egg cartons, toilet paper tube, paint, glue, cotton balls, paint brushes

1-) To keep the paint colors from getting to mixed up, we provided one cup per color with one brush.  We had two cups and brushes for the engine color, since it takes longer to paint.  As the children finished painting with one color, it rotated around, until everyone had used all of the colors.

2-)Paint the toilet paper tube for your engine.  Some of the children found it helpful to have a mom hold the tube, while they painted it.

3-) Paint 5 of the egg dividers, using a different color for each.

4-)Glue the tube onto the unpainted egg divider to make the engine.

5-) Stuff the engine with cotton balls.  (Although you might want wipes near by in case they stick to your gluey fingers).  :) 

Snack: Train Shaped Tortillas and Fruit Salsa 

It is easy to make tortilla chips to match any preschool theme!  We used a train cookie cutter to cut out our tortillas and then followed this super yummy (and easy) recipe on allrecipes for fruit salsa and cinnamon tortillas.  Anything that close to 3000 people have given a five star rating to has to taste delicious!


Activity: Sidewalk Chalk Tracks 

The moms drew the outside rails of a long winding train track.  The children helped fill in the tracks on the inside.  Then they had a fun time pretending to be trains running up and down the tracks.  And then drawing more tracks.    This is a great activity for fine AND gross motor skills.  It is rare to find an activity that strengthens both.