It’s been a few months now since we started doing the Bible lessons from the ABC Jesus Loves Me Three-Year Old curriculum. Because I really want to focus on the Bible, I haven’t really put any effort into any other kind of lesson. However, now that we’re pretty much in the swing of things, I’ve been wanting to start up again with Before Five in a Row. I began introducing the books as soon as Ian turned two, and while he loved them, neither of us was ready to do any more than just read the stories. All along I’ve planned on “re-rowing” each title, this time doing a few activities as we go. I’ve been meaning to get started with that for the last few weeks, but for various reasons it just has not happened. Until this week…
Months ago I had written out a calendar of what books I wanted to cover each month (not just B4FIAR but a few others as well, mostly those with activities I found at HomeschoolShare.com). This week I had scheduled Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown, and as it was also listed as the book of the week on the ABC Jesus Loves Me Week 11 lesson plan, I figured it was a great time to dive in.
We started (of course) by reading Goodnight Moon. When we got to the part of GM that talks about the cow jumping over the moon, he reminded me of the nursery rhyme “Hey Diddle Diddle,” (which we talked about the last time we rowed this book) and I had to recite it several times. We also read My World (a companion book by the same author and illustrator). I’m not crazy about My World, but Ian really seems to enjoy it, especially the illustrations.
We played the easiest version of the Goodnight Moon game, finding the picture cards to match the pictures on each color game board.
Okay, so that’s Elijah playing with it, not Ian (he likes the pictures too!) But Ian really enjoys this game, and even this easiest level makes him think. Sometimes we play it together, but it’s also a great activity for him to keep himself entertained if I’m busy.
To do the “animal classification” activity described in the Before Five in a Row manual, I printed up the cards from HomeschoolShare, though I added rabbit, kitten, and giraffe to those they had in their set:
After all, the rabbit is pretty prominent in the story, and the kittens are mentioned more than once. I couldn’t figure out why they didn’t have cards in the set but the elephant did. (I had to go back to the book to figure out why the elephant was there, and then when I found it I wondered why they hadn’t included the giraffe as well, so I remedied that.) Because it’s the first time we’ve done this activity, I kept the classification simple: big and small. As we add cards with future books, we’ll see what other groupings we can come up with. (I printed them on cardstock and laminated them, because we’ll probably use them quite a bit as we go through the rest of the books).
Since I had the laminator heated up (I LOVE that thing!), I thought I’d put it to good use. Ian hasn’t been able to grasp the concept of rhymes yet, so I made these rhyme cards using pictures from Harper Collin’s Margaret Wise Brown activities and HomeschoolShare’s Goodnight Moon Lapbook components.
He enjoyed making matches with my help, but even after playing several times throughout the week, he just didn’t get it. I had no idea this was such an advanced concept. It seems so obvious, doesn’t it? But it’s just not clicking. Not that I’m worried–someday he’ll get it!
We talked a little bit about the phases of the moon. (We’ve observed the differences in the appearance of the moon with Ian a lot at night, but never really talked about why it changes.) I liked the idea I found here, but we didn’t just do it, just talked through it without using Oreo cookies. That will have to wait until he’s old enough to really get it. I really liked the instruction sheet though, and printed it out to refer to when the boys are older.
One last small thing we did was the counting activity from HarperCollins Margaret Wise Brown page. I also thought about making cornmeal “mush,” but Ian’s such a picky eater these days, I doubted he would want to try it even if he helped make it. (And since I’m still getting through morning sickness, I knew I wouldn’t want to finish what was left either.)