Saturday, November 22, 2014

Let's do skool!

Earlier this week, DJ surprised me by saying, "Let's do school!" Before this he hadn't really shown an awareness that the fun things we do for school were different than playing with toys. I had hesitated initially to even call it school, but so many of his friends are in preschool now, and school is mentioned in books and TV shows and even his hairdresser asked if he's in school.

We worked a lot with the Land & Water forms again. I initially introduced them in this post back in August. This is a huge work though so it will take many repetitions to complete it. So far we've only been working with lake/island, peninsula/gulf and straight/isthmus. DJ can name all of them, but often mixes up the pairs (calling a straight an isthmus and vice versa).

I made the clay forms from Monster Clay and they are fairly permanent. In this photo, DJ is making copies with our homemade play dough. He was *really* impressed with himself. He kept saying, "I'm doing it! I'm doing it!" The whole time.

Being able to do things himself is of huge importance to him right now. Yes, he is three.

He worked with his Parts of a Car cards again too. This time I selected 3 of his matchbox cars and had him find each of the parts on the little cars. He LOVED that!! He was really excited to learn that 2 of the cars were so detailed, they even had little marks for a gas tank cap. This was a great opportunity to use this new vocabulary in a really fun way.

Later, he pulled out his Rory's Story Cubes and I made up an impromptu sound game. I rolled the dice and had him help me name each picture. Then I gave him the first sound of each - b-b-bee, f-f-face, c-c-cane. He actually started repeating the stuttered sounds! Then we looked to see if any of the 9 cubes had the same starting sound. In the photo, we have matched bee/bug and cane/keyhole. The remaining four don't have matches.

If you've been following this blog at all, you know that DJ has been slow to catch on to the sound games, initially even refusing to play them at all. But I've seen real progress lately and yesterday, he asked me out of the blue, "What sound does elephant start with?" Yay! Being interested in the subject is a huge step forward. I've slowly begun talking about ending sounds and middle sounds. I'm hoping in the next couple of months we'll be able to start the sandpaper letters. I really think he's going to enjoy that much more than the sound games. His granddad recently mentioned to me that he is not much of an auditory learner so I wonder if that has been part of DJ's reluctance too.

DJ is still working on pouring rice. I've been emphasizing proper procedure here to encourage his focus. I gave him a funnel for this to help with pouring back into the pitcher but he got silly with it and put the funnel in a cup and filled the funnel with more than the cup could hold. Needless to say, when he lifted the funnel, rice spilled everywhere! Heh.

In other practical life, DJ is thrilled to be peeling oranges again now that they're back in season. I think that at least half the reason for selecting an orange at snack time, because he can do it himself!

Recently, DJ also wanted a tomato at snack time so I gave him a knife. He is surprisingly good at slicing with a knife, even in this case when the tomato was a little too soft.

I'll finish off with all the art work DJ has been doing lately. He's asking to paint a lot and it's so fun to see. Each one of the following pictures is from a different painting session this week.

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