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Giveaway #1 ~ Itty-Bitty Bookworm

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This Giveaway is now CLOSED!

Itty-Bitty Bookworm has generously donated a FULL YEAR of curriculum {worth $300} to one of my readers! Please read through this post for the complete details on this great giveaway!

I think you all know how much time it takes to plan activities for your little ones ~ having something on hand to help save you time and energy can be a HUGE blessing. Maybe you need a little inspiration in your planning and a ‘fresh-start’ for the new year? Tara at Itty~Bitty Bookworm has an incredible literature-based preschool curriculum that can be used in both a homeschool setting as well as an in-home daycare or school setting. Itty-Bitty Bookworm provides curriculum for children ages 18 months to 5 years of age with a wide range of activities including cooking, math, crafts, manipulative ideas, imaginative play, rhymes, language/phonics, and much more.

Bailey’s curriculum (ages 18 to 36 months) focuses on two different books each month and Bo’s curriculum (ages 3 to 5) focuses on four books each month. The activities and projects for the lessons revolve around the stories that are being read with the children.

Lesson plans are broken down into an easy-to-follow daily format {you can see a pdf sample here} and they are completely flexible!

Curriculum calendars for both levels:

Tara, the founder of Itty-Bitty Bookworm, also has a blog, Raising Itty-Bitty Bookworms along with free resources for parents. If you are interested in ordering Itty-Bitty Curriculum, you can choose to download a month of lesson plans ($20 each month) at a time or order a CD-rom ($30/month) of plans. Itty-Bitty has also started offering a geography~based curriculum, called Bo’s World Units, which are being released over this next year ~ and I know for a fact that a unit on Tanzania should be releasing soon, since I helped write it! :)

The Itty-Bitty Giveaway!!
The Itty-Bitty Bookworm has kindly offered to give one reader a full year of curriculum on CD. This giveaway is worth $300, so enter and spread the word! There are several ways for you to enter this giveaway, but there is one mandatory first entry: leave a comment here letting me know what you like most about this curriculum.
If you would like to earn extra entries {you can earn a total of 5 extra entries}, leave a comment for each of the following:
This giveaway will be open until Saturday, December 12th until 8pm and I will announce the winner by Monday, December 14th. Please be sure that there is a way for me to contact you ~ otherwise I will draw another winner.

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This product was given to me for review purposes over a year ago and I did not have to return the product to the vendor. I have loved using it since that time! I was not paid for this post. All opinions expressed in this post are mine.

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Preschool Corner: Z is for Zoo

Before I forget ~ if you link up this week to the Preschool Corner, can you leave a comment letting me know that you did? That way I will be sure to see your link and visit! Sometimes my week gets so crazy and I forget to check back and I don’t want to miss your posts!

I picked a few books to focus on for the letter Z and then used Itty Bitty Bookworm’s Bo Curriculum {July Year 1} for some of the activities since she has plans for two books, Dear Zoo and also Goodnight Gorilla. We did so.much.reading this week it was almost comical. Kaleb loved the books too, and we spent one entire day on the floor just reading and re-reading the books together.

Be sure to check out the first giveaway in the 1,500 Subscriber Celebration today ~ it’s sure to be one that you will LOVE!! A FULL YEAR of Itty-Bitty Bookworm curriculum worth $300!!!

Alphabet Book

Our alphabet book activity was a quick and easy zebra puzzle.

Z

Cooking ~ Animals in Cages

Itty Bitty Bookworm provides a fun idea for making zoo animals in their cages using animal crackers. Not so much real cooking, but fun in the kitchen and a yummy little treat. :)

Games

  • Animal charades ~ acting out the different zoo animals from the stories we read.
  • ZooKeeper, Zookeeper ~ played like ‘Doggie, Doggie, who has your bone?’

Math

  • We had fun sequencing the different animals in Goodnight Gorilla using printables from Itty-Bitty Bookworm
  • We weighed and compared our plastic zoo animals that we have around the house to see which ones were similar in weight or weighed more than others.
  • How many to make 5? We used a fun idea from Itty Bitty Bookworm to do some simple addition facts together.

Songs and Rhymes

The book Going to the Zoo is a great play off of Raffi’s song “Daddy’s Taking Us to the Zoo Tomorrow”, so this was a song that we sang a LOT that week. :)

Writing

I wrote the starter to a sentence for Zachary, “My favorite animal at the zoo is…” and Zachary finished the sentence and then he illustrated his sentence.

Stories & Books We Used


Ready to Link Up?

Share what you are doing with your kids! Please link your exact blog post to the Mr. Linky below and link back here too! Please be sure to include a link back to the Preschool Corner in your post.
The updated guidelines can be found here if you need them.

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Preschool Corner: Pumpkin Time!

I know ~ technically, the whole pumpkin theme is sooo last month, but it is still fall, so that’s ok too! :) One of my favorite books about pumpkins is It’s Pumpkin Time! by Zoe Hall. I’ve had this book on our shelf before I had kids of my own and LOVE it. While I was pulling together ideas, I remembered that Itty Bitty Bookworm had a unit on it {Bo, Year 1 ~ October}, so I pulled that out and filled in the rest of my plans using ideas from that unit.

And I know that I’m messing around with the alphabet, but I’ve gone in order for 3 years now…and I needed a little change!

Alphabet Book


We made our own little pumpkin patch by painting our fingers/knuckles with orange paint and then pressing it onto the paper. Zachary added some stems onto the pumpkins and then used some green ribbon to make a vine in his little patch.

Art

~ Paper Strip Pumpkins. Even our girls wanted to make some of these! They were so incredibly simple to make too! You can get the full direction here.

~ Paper Plate Pumpkins. We made small pumpkins by painting a small paper plate orange. We also used this activity as a lesson for mixing colors. Zachary used red and yellow paint to make the orange for the pumpkin.

Cooking

~ Pumpkin Spice Playdough ~ We cooked up a big batch of this yummy smelling playdough! The house smelled great after cooking it and the kids played with it for hours! You can find the recipe here. We have it stored in our refrigerator to use again too!

~ Pumpkin Seeds ~ I’m sure it’s no big surprise to know that we made our own pumpkin seeds, is it? The kids were so excited to help out cleaning them and cooking them. Not so excited in eating them. {grins}

Language

~ What’s Inside? This is an activity from Itty Bitty Bookworm where we made predictions about what we would find inside the pumpkin when we opened it up. It definitely wasn’t what Zachary expected! Zachary also made a cute little pumpkin using yarn and pumpkin seeds when we were done.

~ Uppercase/lowercase Letter Sorting ~ Erica @ Confessions of a Homeschooler made some great printables for kids to sort uppercase and lowercase letter “P’s”.

Math

~ A Penny for Your Pumpkin ~ You’ll have to ignore the lack of excitement that this picture shows, because REALLY Zachary had so much fun playing this little money game with me. In fact, we played it four times in a row and he still wants to do it!

I pulled out five mini-pumpkins and two big pumpkins and then gave Zachary a variety of coins: 2 pennies, 2 nickels, a dime and a quarter. We talked about the different coins and their names and then recited this little rhyme I found in my songs/rhymes box from years ago:

Five orange pumpkins in a pumpkin patch.
You know, the kind that are big and round and fat!
Along came Zachary with a {penny} to pay,
He bought a pumpkin and took it away!

Zachary got to choose the pumpkin he wanted to buy and had to hand me the correct coin that we named in the rhyme. Much fun!!

~ How Many Seeds? ~ We used this game from Itty Bitty Bookworm and put the correct number of seed and number cards together to make a little book together.

~ Seeds in the Pumpkin ~ I handed Zachary number cards and he put the correct number of seeds into each of the little pumpkins we have.

~ Pumpkin Patterns ~ We used the pattern cutouts from Itty Bitty Bookworm to make patterns {pumpkin, leaf, etc….}

~ Pumpkin Size Sorting ~ We had fun using this great printable from Erica @ Confessions of a Homeschooler.

Science


~ How a Pumpkin Grows
~ The book It’s Pumpkin Time! is all about the life cycle of a pumpkin, so we talked a lot about how plants/pumpkins grow. I had some sequencing cards already on hand, but Itty Bitty Bookworm provides some in the curriculum unit also.

Songs and Rhymes

Five Little Pumpkins

Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate
The first one said, “Oh my! It’s getting late!”
The second one said, “We don’t care.”
The third one said, “There are leaves in the air.”
The fourth one said, “We’re ready for some fun!”
The fifth one said, “Let’s run and run!”

The whoosh went the wind and out went the light,
and the five little pumpkins rolled out of sight.

On Our Shelf


Ready to Link Up?

Share what you are doing with your kids! Please link your exact blog post to the Mr. Linky below and link back here too! The updated guidelines can be found here if you need them.

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The Preschool Corner: Letter U

This week I used lesson plans from Itty-Bitty Bookworm‘s Bo Curriculum {Year 1 month of June} for the letter U. The majority of ‘U’ ideas that I was coming up with all revolved around the word ‘under’ or ‘umbrella’ so I went with ‘underwater/under the sea’ and focused on an ocean theme, using several different WONDERFUL books {because I was thinking a week of umbrellas might just throw me over the deep end}.

We borrowed the book Over in the Ocean and also Underwater Counting from the library and had a lot of fun doing the activities that Itty Bitty Bookworm lays out in the plans ~ let me tell you, it’s all there for you! We still continued with our alphabet book and letter sheet activity on our own, but otherwise pulled our activities from the lesson plans. The plans provided so much more to do, but these are the things that we chose to do together this week {especially as the last part of the week one of the other kids was sick and at the doctor}.

ABC Book: Umbrella

Umbrellas were very appropriate this week since all it has done is RAIN.

Activities: In the Ocean Booklet

Itty-Bitty’s plans provide a booklet for children to work on over the course of a few days. It includes sea animal words for children to trace along with pictures on each page for them to color.

Fun Activities: Underwater Watercolor

While the girls were creating their watercolor masterpieces, Zachary wanted to participate too, so he painted his own picture. Can you figure out what it is?


It’s a pregnant scuba diver. The grey is her air tank and the bumps on the front are her baby belly. The dots are the air bubbles {apparently he’s an abstract artist}.

Language: Oral Word Play, Word Sorting, & Sentence Starters

Oral Word Play

We used some underwater words to help with phoneme awareness: goldfish, seahorse, dolphin, clownfish, shark, and whale. For the first few words we used this pattern:

Say goldfish. “Goldfish.” Say it again, but don’t say fish. GOLD
Say goldfish. “Goldfish.” Say it again, but don’t say gold. FISH

We did some different sounds with some of the other words too, but Zachary had a fun time figuring out the different words and how to separate them.

Word Sorting

Zachary used some animal word cards and sorted them by which group they belonged in: zoo, farm, and ocean animals. He looked at the animal on the cards and then wrote their names in the correct column.

Sentence Starters

I asked Zachary to help fill in the blanks of this sentence: If I could be a sea creature I would be a ____________ because ________________________.

His answer? I would be an octopus because they squirt black stuff.

Yes. He is a boy all around.

Math: Counting by 2′s and Graphing Goldfish

Underwater Counting by

Movement: Underneath Things & Fish, Fish, Shark


Zachary took some time to go around the house and see what he might be able to fit underneath. We counted how many things there were upstairs and downstairs and then added them together.

Upstairs: Girl’s bunkbeds, kitchen table, barstools, his bunkbed, Mommy & Daddy’s bed = 5

Downstairs: Futon, Mommy’s worktable, Daddy’s workbench, the spare bed, the desk, the coffee table, the shelves in the closet, 2 chairs = 9

Fish, Fish, Shark ~ This is a game that is just like Duck, Duck, Goose. Just use the words Fish, Fish, Shark instead! Much fun {especially when the shark chomps you}.

Letter Sheet/Collage

Click thumbnail to download printable

Stories and Books

Over in the Ocean: In a Coral Reef by Marianne Berkes. The artwork alone in this book will amaze you. The book can either be read or sung to the tune of ‘Over in the Meadow’. We had the board book version of this book, but it also gives ideas for hand motions to go along with the rhyme. Kids count their way through the ocean with sea creatures and a sweet rhyme. LOVED it!

Underwater Counting: Even Numbers by Jerry Palotta. The pictures in this book are also wonderful. After the number one, the book begins counting fish and underwater animals by 2′s all the way up to the number 50. When we had finished reading the book, the kids figured out that the number being talked about was also hidden somewhere in the picture ~ too fun!! They’ve been looking at this book all week.

Things We Used


About the Preschool Corner:

The Preschool Corner is a place for us to share the ideas we are using during our “preschool time” with our kids. You can join in the fun and record what you are doing in your house. Please link your exact blog post to the Mr. Linky below (if you have questions feel free to ask). Be sure to link back to this blog post so that your readers can find some other great ideas too!

The guidelines can be found here if you need them.

Share what you’ve been doing in your house this week! Please leave a comment if you link {since Mr. Linky doesn’t let me know when you join up!}.

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Be sure to check out Itty-Bitty Bookworm for
great resources and wonderful curriculum!

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The Preschool Corner: Letter S

I took the majority of our ‘S’ activities from Bo’s Curriculum from Itty Bitty Bookworm this week. Be sure to check back a little later today, because I will be posting a review on Itty Bitty Bookworm and there will be a giveaway for a full year of Bo’s Curriculum - $300 worth of curriculum! You don’t want to miss that!!

We read the book Silly Sally by Audrey Wood every day this week. When we first sat down with the book, I let Zachary look at the pictures and had him ‘read’ the book to me and tell me what the story was about. He is able to read some of the words and was piecing it together, but it was so fun to hear how he interpreted the illustrations of the book! This is one idea that I pulled from Itty Bitty Bookworm that I am going to continue doing with our kids.

I’ve posted all the activities that we did along with the story, most from Itty Bitty Bookworm with one or two that were just too fun to pass up: our alphabet book page, letter sheet and a wooly sheep.

ABC Book: Spiderwebs

This (as pitiful as it looks) is actually a spider web. Don’t ask me where the spider disappeared to – more than likely somewhere where it will scare me some morning into thinking it is real.

I cut out a circle from black construction paper and we put it into the bottom of a 9″ round cake pan. Zachary dropped a few marbles into some silver paint and then rolled the marbles around to make the circle look like a spider web. Supposedly he glued a few spiders on it, although I can’t seem to figure out where they are.

Alphabet Activities:


Fun Activities: Wooly Sheep

Since a sheep is one of the characters in the book Silly Sally and we have an over-abundance of toilet paper rolls, this little craft was so.much.fun ~ and too cute! I found the craft at Kids Craft Weekly some time back.

Ordering by Size: Big Shoes, Little Shoes

At the end of Silly Sally there are shoes everywhere up in the air. One of the curriculum suggestions was to pair and size the shoes up. With so many people living in our house, we have an abundance of shoes. Zachary paired up 12 pairs of shoes and lined them up from smallest to little.

Illustrating His Favorite Part

After we’d read Silly Sally several times I asked Zachary what his favorite part of the story was. After he’d told me it was the part when Ned comes into the story I asked him to draw it out for me – just.too.sweet.

Letter Sheet/Collage

S Worksheet

Stories and Books

Silly Sally by Audrey Wood

We put together our own “Silly Sally” booklet this week to go along with our story. Zachary had fun tearing pink paper and gluing it onto the the pig. Later we painted some ‘mud’ onto the page too. The sheep turned nice and wooly after gluing cotton balls and Zachary insisted on coloring the loon and the dog spotty and brown. The book turned out great and he has been happily carrying it around with him as a book HE made.

Writing

Itty Bitty provided several different writing opportunities for Zachary this week. He wrote color names to go along with Sally’s bows in one of the mini-books and was so excited that he figured out the names on his own (copying them from the word list on the wall).

About the Preschool Corner:

The Preschool Corner is a place for us to share the ideas we are using during our “preschool time” with our kids. You can join in the fun and record what you are doing in your house. Please link your exact blog post to the Mr. Linky below (if you have questions feel free to ask). Be sure to link back to this blog post so that your readers can find some other great ideas too!

The guidelines can be found here if you need them.

Share what you’ve been doing in your house this week!


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