Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Our Classroom Today

Our classroom

We have been loving our Tuesday group. The company is good, and the "classrooms" are magnificent! This one was a bit farther afield than we usually venture, but well worth the drive time. The nature center had great things for the kids to do and see. Lots of appropriate make believe toys, along with some nature piece exhibits such as furs and skeletons.

Once the kids started getting squirrely, we moved outside for lunch and a hike. It is getting cooler here, we have had snow, but that hasn't stopped us from venturing into the great outdoors, for which I am grateful. We walked along a path that then became a smaller path, that wound up being not a trail. We turned around went back to find the boardwalk. On the boardwalk we found these:

woolly bears

Everyone had to have a turn carrying them (poor things, just there minding their own business, then high up tin the air being bounced along). They were eventually returned to the boardwalk, in one piece, and hopefully none the worse for the trip.

Let's hope the good weather continues so we can hit a few more outside treks before the snow sticks!

Monday, October 26, 2009

too many ideas!


We started doing Halloween things today, you know, crafts and the like (we had our muffin tins and we made these fabulous skeletons! I'll post pictures hopefully later this week).

Kiddo wants more. And he has BIG ideas (always--he has never once had a small idea). And so I went looking for more things to do (because our week wasn't full enough--we have a Halloween related outing everyday from now until Halloween--I told you it is always one of the busiest weeks on our calendar!). I want to do sooooooo many of them! People out there in webland have such amazingly creative brains!

Here are a few I hope we can get done this week:
Paper Bats from 4 Crazy Kings--SO cute. SO simple. Can't wait.
Spider web boards from Vintage Chica--This one may require a trip to the hardware store (though I could do the craft she based it on without going anywhere, I have paper plates and yarn) but I think it would be worth it. These are awesome. I think the kids would love banging in the nails, and I would love making the spiderwebs, oh, and so would the kids!
Ghost Garland from wendolonia--This one would require either a trip to the fabric store, or a paper substitution (which is much more likely!) I probably only need to make 3-5 for the space Kiddo wants to have ghosts in. Paper might have to do for this year and then we can make the cloth ones for next year. I think they will last a little longer, so we wouldn't have to make them year after year. That will open up more time for all the other things I find to do!

There are others, trust me. But I think 3 is probably MORE than enough for us to bite off right now. We also have to carve our pumpkins, which requires us to buy pumpkins first, which requires a visit to the pumpkin patch, which requires locating a pumpkin patch that is closer than a half hour away. Yep, we'll be plenty busy!

Muffin Tin Monday--Halloween!!

Halloween is a favorite holiday at our house. I am not sure why, but we always seem to have more going on the week of Halloween than any other time of the year! So today we started our week of festivities with our Halloween Muffin Tin Monday!

muffin tin Monday

It took me FOREVER to put this meal together. FOR. EVER. Too long, really. Even though each individual part was very easy, everything added together ended up taking a lot of time. The end result was good, but for the amount of time I put in it should have been great. The kids loved it, though, so really what else matters?

Here is Kiddo's:
muffin tin Monday

Top row:
Goblin mouths (apple wedges and slivered almonds), bread stick ghost (I had to do something with the leftover bread sticks--it is a stretch, I know), white chocolate ghostie, another goblin mouth.

Middle row:
Dragon eye (hard-boiled egg half with black olive pupil), goblin teeth (slivered almonds--I needed something to fill in the spaces on his tin), pumpkin spice jack-o-lantern muffin (recipe here, I added the chocolate jack-o-lantern face).

Bottom row:
Witches broom (fruit-by-the-foot wrapped around a pretzel stick), Mummy dog, another witches broom.

Many of the other items came from Family Fun, though I saw them elsewhere in webland, too.
Here is Kutey's:
Kutey's Halloween 2009 Muffin Tin

Monday, October 19, 2009

Muffin Tin Monday--Themeless 3

Since I have such a backlog of posts, I am going to post a few random Muffin Tin Mondays. This one is completely themeless, made up of whatever I could find in the house. We had several of those in the last couple of months. The kids still loved them--though Kiddo regularly asks what the theme is.

<muffin tin Monday

In Kutey's from left to right:
Top: Chik'n Nuggets, apple slices
Middle: chips (filler!), peach slices
Bottom: mashed potatoes and gravy (leftovers), string cheese

The extra cup on top is the dip for her nuggets. We have been using pizza sauce. The kids love it !

More posts to come, including a couple where we took our muffin tins on the road!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

A backlog of posts

I have a long list of posts to make, from field trips to "classrooms" to crafts to muffin tins to newly acquired "curriculum." But we have been so busy that I have not been able to pull it all together. Next week our schedule lightens up a bit, so I hope to get a bunch of them posted then.

For now, however, I have to share a website I stumbled upon today. Windows to the Universe is a website about the universe and it is FULL of information, games, and teacher resources. I have only scratched the surface, but I am looking forward to using this resource!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Our Classroom Today--October 13

classroomWe had snow. And it is chilly. But that did not dampen our spirits! We headed out to the "other" zoo, Como Zoo in St. Paul. We have the privilege of having not one but 2 incredible zoos within a short drive. We love them both, for different reasons. We don't get to Como as often as we might, but that makes it almost more special when we do!

The kids spent a lot of time in the primates enclosure. There is a lot of activity there. Lots of animals. Lots of action. Our kids included. They would see something in one, then run to the next, only to head back to the first when something moving caught their eye. Exhausting for me! They also got to see giraffes, zebras, lions, tigers, and mountain lions. It is a relatively small zoo, so we saw most of it before lunch.

After lunch, we headed out to the playground, where the kids played in the now melting snow and got drenched. We changed clothes (I always carry a full change of clothes for each of them these days!) and headed home, once again, exhausted. Tuesdays are fabulous.

*While I like the variety of animals at the Como Zoo, I admit that one of the reasons we don't go there is that it makes me a little sad. The enclosures, while better than they used to be, still seem rather small to me. And sometimes the animals look just absolutely bored. Especially the gorillas. And I love the gorillas.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Bert and Ernie, Good Night!

We are fortunate to live in an area with a strong performing arts community. There are theaters everywhere, and many of them do shows oriented to children. The premiere theater for children here is The Children's Theatre Company. We attended a performance there last winter (on last minute $5 tickets). This year I thought we might see a few shows--but it might end up being only 1 again. While their shows NEVER disappoint (they have been around since before Hubby and I were kids), their prices, well, they are a bit steep. I am planning more theater trips, but I think we will mix it up a bit and see shows at other venues as well.

We did, however, fit the world premiere of "Bert and Ernie, goodnight!" into our exceptionally busy schedule. Kiddo and Kutey LOVED it. We went as a school group, which saved us a bit, and gave us the opportunity to see the performance while the kids were still fresh in the morning instead of when they were tired from the day.

The play was phenomenal! The actors did a fabulous job of portraying the beloved Sesame Street characters. The staging was impressive--the whole thing took place in Bert and Ernie's bedroom. It is a musical with lots of great songs throughout the performance. "I'd Like to Visit the Moon," and "Doing the Pigeon" both appear. Many of the skits we have seen and LOVED on Sesame Street were adapted to fit the story and stage. The basic premise is that Ernie can't go to sleep, and Bert wants to. Hilarity abounds as Bert tries to find a way to get Ernie to go to sleep.

Two favorite moments: Ernie "testing" whether or not Bert is asleep by poking him, and the poem "The Park" By Ernie.

It only runs through October 25, 2009 here. If you get a chance to see it, take it! I would love to take the kids back and see it again!