Today was all about the mud kitchen! We sailed through our morning routine and even shortened our music time a little (even though we still fit in several animal sound songs!) just so that we could play in the new mud kitchen. Over the weekend, I visited our local Goodwill and picked up several kitchen items to enhance the "cooking" experience for the children. It's so much fun to work with real pots, pans, and utensils, especially when you're making dandelion soup...
... or sand Benedict!
Playing in the sand kitchen is developmentally wonderful on so many levels- it appeals to nearly all the senses (we try not to taste our creations here!), it involves large and fine motor skills, it fosters communication and imaginitive play, and it gets the kids outside in the fresh air connecting with nature. What more could a child ask for?
While the children were playing in the sand kitchen, we found a wooly bear caterpillar. The children took turns cradling the caterpillar gently. We talked about how it felt- "fuzzy" and "tickly" were the words of choice.
It never ceased to amaze me when little hands can be so tender to little creatures!
There were so many dandelions in the yard that we just couldn't resist picking them to make another dandelion crown. The models are just so lovely, there was no way I could resist!
When the children and I were done cleaning up in the back yard, we went for a walk around the neighborhood with our trusty stick horses. We observed the garbage truck pick up the trash and looked out for flowers in each color of the rainbow plus pink and white. We found all the colors if you count tiny green tree flowers and a pretend blue flower decoration!
In our last activity before lunch, the children practiced using different kinds of boats- first, they pretended they were in a sailboat (or that they were they sail!)...
... then they were in power boats with big engines and a steering wheel...
... last, they were in canoes, paddling silently along the bank of a river. It was great for movement, and the canoe paddling was especially great for practicing crossing the midline.
Later in the day, we read the children's classic Make Way for Ducklings and talked about how the mommy duck took care of her babies, how people can help take care of wild animals, and where good homes for animals are in our back yard.
See you tomorrow!