Understanding & Using Common Abbreviations

Are you Understanding and Using Common Abbreviations ?

Before we begin ~ this Post is about Abbreviations NOT Acronyms….

Both Abbreviations and Acronyms are shortened forms of words or phrases.

An Abbreviation is a shortened form of a word ~ usually 2-4 letters ~ used to represent the whole word, such as Dr. for Doctor or tbsp. for tablespoon, while an Acronym contains a set of initial letters from a phrase that usually form another word such as ASAP for As Soon As Possible or LOL for Laugh Out Loud.

Why  Use Abbreviations ?

When talking and/or writing it takes less time to say or write the first initial of each word or an abbreviated form of the full word than to spell out every single word. This makes communication easier and faster. Several every day examples are:

  • Writing down directions to somewhere is easier to when using N, S, E or W on a St., Ln. or Blvd. instead of writing North, South, East or West on a Street, Lane, or Boulevard.
  • Words like tablespoon, teaspoon, Fahrenheit, pounds are hard to fit on a recipe card, so, using tbsp,tsp. F. and lb. will keep the measurements on the 3 X 5″ recipe card.
  • Large group words like Company and Association take up a lot of space on a sign, so using Co. and Assn. can save time and money.

When to Use Abbreviations ?

In writing, abbreviations are especially useful when you need to squeeze a lot of writing into a small space, like:

  • signs
  • posters
  • letters
  • envelopes
  • lists
  • notes
  • texts
  • recipes
  • diagrams
  • measurements
  • directions

You can, also, use abbreviations in place of long or cumbersome phrases to make your sentences easier and quicker to read:

 Without Abbreviations ~Drive North on Highway 357. Take the Green Street exit. Turn right on Maple Lane. Then, continue on Maple Lane until Poplar Boulevard.

With Abbreviations ~ Drive N. on Hwy 357. Take the Green St. exit. Turn rt. on Maple Ln. Then, cont. on Maple Ln. until Poplar Blvd.

So, I created 6 Activity Units for Understanding and Using Common Abbreviations during everyday communications when writing and talking.

Each Activity Unit contains eight similar Components.

Activity  Unit  Components

Here is a list of the Components included in each of the six Abbreviation Activity Units:

  • Construction  Instructions
  • Lesson Plan
  • Anchor  Chart Diagram
  • Pre -Test Forms with Answer Cards
  • Game Sort Mats with Storage Pocket & Game Pieces*
  • Response Sheets
  • Abbreviation  Sentences & Answer Sheet

*Game Pieces include the “long” word and its abbreviation.

Keeping reading for a brief description of each Activity  Unit.

Classroom  Clips

This 37-page Activity Unit includes a general collection of Abbreviations seen in the different subject areas taught in the classroom: Reading, Writing, Social Studies, Geography, Science, and Math (Customary & Metric).

Click on the link below for TpT’s Product  access:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ABBREVIATIONS-Classroom-Clips-7364876

It’s About Time

This 32-page Activity Unit includes Calendar (months & weekdays) Abbreviations, Time, and an annual, mini,  make-‘n-take Calendar.

Click on the link below for TpT’s Product  access:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ABBREVIATIONS-Its-About-Time-7364912

Mini ~ Scopes  Measurements (Customary & Metric)

This 30-page Activity Unit includes Customary & Metric  Abbreviations for height, weight, distance, volume, and temperature. A Math problem-solving component is part of the Abbreviation Sentences.

Click on the link below for TpT’s Product access:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ABBREVIATIONS-Mini-Scopes-Measurements-7364959

People (Individuals & Special Groups)

This 22-page Activity Unit includes a Abbreviations given to individuals as Common & Special Titles as well as Group Titles.

Click on the link below for TpT’s Product access:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ABBREVIATIONS-People-7365008

Short  Order Kitchen (Customary & Metric)

This 24-page Activity Unit includes Customary & Metric Abbreviations seen in Recipes as well as Food Amounts found in packaging. A Math problem-solving component is part of the Abbreviation Sentences.

Click on the link below for TpT’s Product  access:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ABBREVIATIONS-Short-Order-Kitchen-7365043

Travel  Tidbits (Customary & Metric)

This 45-page Activity Unit includes Customary & Metric Abbreviations for In-Town Directions, USA’s 50 States, the 7 Continents, and Global Directions.  A Geography/Map component is part of the Abbreviation Sentences.

Click on the link below for TpT’s Product access:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ABBREVIATIONS-Travel-Tidbits-7365068

A Few Last Words

Some of these Activity Units have “cross-over” Abbreviations. For example: Common Titles for Individuals are found in both Classroom Clips and People. Measurements can be found in Classroom Clips, Mini-Scopes, and Short-Order Kitchen. 

However, each specific Activity Unit offers more than a few Abbreviations regarding its Abbreviation subject area. Plus, the Game Sort Mats, Game Pieces, and Abbreviation Sentences are specific to its subject area as well.

Regardless of which Activity Units you decide to purchase for your teaching  purposes, I hope you and yours have fun while learning this valuable Literacy Skill.

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

Copyright©2021BizzyLizzyBiz

USING FIGURATIVE LANGUAGE: Add Color to Your Writing

 

                       USING FIGURATIVE LANGUAGE:                    Add  Color to Your Writing

in SEVEN Different Ways

Figurative Language is a creative element you can include for adding color to some of your writing.

Many writers want to share  their expressions with readers.

If you, as a writer, want to engage a reader, there are a few things all good writers do.

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Establish a focus, or purpose your reader can follow and understand..
  • Have an organized sequence to your content ~ beginning, middle & ending.
  • Develop and support your “Main Idea”.
  • Use adjectives, adverbs, and synonyms  to upgrade your written expressions.
  • Edit your work for grammar, spelling, and sentence structure.

Need some additional  info on Vocabulary Upgrades ? 

Check out this blog post:

 CLAMDIGGERS’ SUMMER GAMES: Vocabulary Study for Grade Levels 3 ~ 6

BLB’s Resource Library had a read for you. Here’s the link: Vocabulary Study Book Lists for Engaging Grade Levels 3 ~

What Is Figurative Language ?

A writer uses Figurative Language to include a word or phrase that doesn’t have an everyday, or literal meaning.

S/he uses one or more types of Figurative Language to emphasize:

  • an emotion,
  • time,
  • amount,
  • and/or size of a situation and/or character

outside of its usual, normal place. 

Humor and drama can be part of the writer’s purpose and expression.

Usually, Figurative Language tries to explain something that is not real or factual by helping the reader form a visual image.

Writers of novels, short stories, poetry, songs, plays, speeches, news, and, even, informational, nonfiction texts will entertain and engage their readers with one or more of the different types of Figurative Language.

What Are The Different Forms, or Types of Figurative Language ?

Although there are between 10 and 15 types of Figurative Language, your 8 ~ 11 year-old child will be  learning seven of them.

As a Third Grader, s/he will be taught to recognize the difference between literal and non-literal language when reading, writing, and speaking.

Of the seven different forms of Figurative Language, usually Similes and Metaphors are introduced as the first of these types to explore. Your child may already be familiar with these 2forms of Figurative Language. S/he can identify them through the content s/he reads and hears in the classroom.

S/he will probably be familiar with the other types through interactive family, friends,  and environmental communication. They are: Idioms, Hyperboles, Personification, Alliteration, and Onomatopoeia. 

Now, you may be wondering why would a writer want to use Figurative Language.

  Are There Advantages to Using Figurative Language ?

Yes ! There are more than a few  Benefits for encouraging your budding writer (and speaker)  to include Figurative Language in his/her expressions.

Communication

  • Your child hears Figurative Language expressed in music, radio announcements, speeches, commercials, movies, and TV shows. It’s important for him/her to understand what is being said.
  • Your child engages their creativity and imagination when including Figurative Language during oral and written expression.
  • As your child transitions from concrete to abstract thinking, Figurative Language can make those complex ideas, concepts, and feelings easier to visualize and, then,  understand.
  • If your child is learning the literal words & phrases of English as another language, practice with Figurative Language will  improve his/her literacy & communication skills.

Reading

  • Your child’s understanding of Figurative Language will increase her/his overall comprehension of the content being read.
  • Not only does reading text with Figurative Language engage a reader, it, also, helps your child visualize,  interpret and analyze the setting, character traits, plot, and author’s purpose of the story.

Writing

  • Using Figurative Language when writing presents your child with many opportunities for expressing his/her thoughts in vivid, colorful, unique,  and interesting ways.
  • Your child’s ability to use Figurative Language is a way to effectively change a simple thought into a beautiful, complex image. 

So, How Do I Support My Child’s Learning?

Here are a few suggestions for supporting your child’s usage of Figurative Language:

  • Make sure s/he can define the meanings of each type of Figurative Language.
  • Use a variety of different forms of Figurative Language when communicating and identify them individually.
  • Point out examples when reading, watching media, listening to music, information & advertisements as well as writing.
  • Ask questions about your child’s writing, such as “compared to what, as in, sounds like, looks like, feels like, smells like, etc.
  • See if your child can differentiate the different kinds of Figurative Language and tell you when it is NOT being used.

Try some interactive activities, too.

How About Some FUN Learning Activities ?

Games and other interactive, hands-on activities with cross-curricular inclusions are effective ways to engage your child’s learning of figurative Language.

See if you and yours enjoy identifying some of the types when doing any of these:

  • Present a collection of picture books & magazines. Take turns locating and identifying which forms of Figurative Language are being used and what they mean.
  • During your next walk in Nature or anywhere, have your child describe the surroundings using the five senses with Figurative Language phrasing.
  • Select different objects around the house and ask your child you use a specific form of Figurative Language when describing them.
  • Look a a piece of art the next time you visit a museum and both of you use Figurative Language to describe the piece and how it makes you feel.
  • Create a Figurative Language Image Gallery and play a Match game with the drawings to the form of figurative Language.
  • Write skits that include Figurative Language and act them out.

Need a few more activity ideas? Here’s a  link:

https://www.scholastic.com/teachers/articles/teaching-content/grades-4-5-figurative-language-lessons/

I have, also, created games and activities for each of the seven types of Figurative Language. So, keep reading……    

Product Unit Components & Elements

Each of my six  Product Units~Similes & Metaphors (combined as one unit), Idioms, Personifications, Hyperboles, Alliteration & Onomatopoeia contain the following Components:

  • Front & Back Covers
  • Contents List
  • Materials List with Construction Instructions
  • Literature List
  • Simple Lesson Plan
  • At least 4 Different Activities with Directions & Answers

The Elements follow Bloom’s Higher Order Thinking Sequence and provide opportunities for increasing Critical Thinking Skills through:

  • Definition Cards
  • May have Label and/or Name Cards
  • Storage Pocket for Game Pieces
  • May have Sort Mats
  • Fill-In & Matching Activities
  • Writing Applications

           First up ~ Similes & Metaphors

Similes and Metaphors

Let’s define these two types of Figurative Language:                

A SIMILE is Figurative Language that compares two unlike things using the words “like”, “as”, or “resembles”. It is very similar to a METAPHOR.

A METAPHOR is Figurative Language that compares two things, which are usually not alike and does not use comparison words                     ( like, as, resembles).

Here are Similes & Metaphors links for Kid-Friendly Lists:

https://examples.yourdictionary.com/simile-examples-for-kids.html

https://blog.udemy.com/metaphor-examples-for-kids/

You can access this 37-page Product Unit with learning activities from my Teacher PayTeachers Shop by clicking on this link:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/SIMILES-METAPHORS-Same-andor-Different–7101599

And here’s a little 6-page Freebie to go with it:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/MAKING-SENSE-OF-SIMILES-METAPHOR-MEANINGS-7101454

Idioms are next….

Idioms

  IDIOMS are Figurative Language phrases that are culturally-based, with meanings completely different from the  literal, every day meaning.

Here is an Idioms link for a Kid-Friendly List :

https://examples.yourdictionary.com/idioms-for-kids.html

You can access this 38-page Product Unit with learning activities from my Teacher PayTeachers Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/IDIOMS-Local-Lingo-7102372

And here’s a little 6-page Freebie to go with it:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/IDIOM-INQUIRY-7102149

Personifications coming up….

Personifications

PERSONIFICATIONS give an animal, object or idea human characteristics or actions.

Here is a Personifications link for a Kid-Friendly List :

https://examples.yourdictionary.com/examples-of-personification-for-kids.html

You can access this 32-page Product Unit with learning activities from my Teacher PayTeachers Shop by clicking on this link:

  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/PERSONIFICATIONS-Animal-Vegetable-or-Mineral–7102654

And here’s a little 6-page Freebie to go with it:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/MAKING-IT-PERSONIFIED-7102528

Keep reading for HYPERBOLES

HYPERBOLES

 

HYPERBOLES are over-the-top exaggeration phrases usually included to make a point or add humor.

Here is a HYPERBOLES link for a Kid-Friendly List :

https://www.rd.com/article/hyperbole-examples/

You can access this 44-page Product Unit with learning activities, including several for Tall Tales from my Teacher PayTeachers Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/HYPERBOLES-No-Way-Ever–7102911

And here’s a little 7-page Freebie to go with it:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/HILARIOUS-HYPERBOLES-7102790

And now for a little Alliteration…

Alliteration

A Tongue Twister is a form of ALLITERATION, which is repeating  the beginning letter of several words close together in a sentence.

Here is an Alliterations link for a Kid-Friendly List :

https://examples.yourdictionary.com/alliteration-examples-for-kids.html

You can access this 29-page Product Unit with learning activities from my Teacher PayTeachers Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ALLITERATIONS-Word-Rhythms-Tongue-Twisters-7107779

And here’s a little 5-page Freebie to go with it:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Arranging-Alliterations-7107672

And, finally, onward and downward to  Onomatopoeia…

Onomatopoeia

ONOMATOPOEIA uses a word to describe a sound and actually mimics the sound of the object or action that is speaking.

Here is an Onomatopoeia link for a Kid-Friendly List :

 https://examples.yourdictionary.com/examples-of-onomatopoeia-for-kids.html

You can access this 38-page Product Unit with learning activities from my Teacher PayTeachers Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ONOMATOPOEIA-Noun-Sounds-7107903

And here’s a little 5-page Freebie to go with it:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/OWNING-ONOMATOPOEIA-7107851

Teaching your growing Learners this valuable Literacy element can be a very engaging and valuable asset for encouraging creativity and understanding our Language. I hope you will find some, if not all, of these Units useful.

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

Copyright©2021BizzyLizzyBiz

 

CLAMDIGGERS’ SUMMER GAMES: Vocabulary Study for Grade Levels 3 ~ 6

How about learning a new vocabulary word or two every day this Summer?!?

CLAMDiggers'Summer Vocabulary Games

CLAMDIGGER’S Summer Games: Vocabulary Study for Grade Levels 3-6 is here to help you do just that…

AND have fun while doing it!!!

A WORD Can Be Many WORDS

A Word can be named as a Part of Speech and/or several Parts of Speech:

  • nouns & pronouns
  • verbs
  • adverbs & adjectives
  • articles
  • prepositions & conjunctions
  • and, Oh ! ~interjections

It can, also, be:

  • a Synonym and/or an Antonym
  • a Contraction or a Compound Word
  • a Homophone
  • a Homonym
  • a Heteronym

You can, also, add letters to the beginning and/or ending of a Word to change its meaning. These are known as Prefixes and Suffixes.

Need  a fun way to introduce some of these Vocabulary Elements? An engaging, colorful book sprinkled with humor is perfect.

BLB’s Library has a Resource for you:

Vocabulary Study Book Lists for Engaging Grade Levels 3 ~ 6

If you are willing to increase your Vocabulary ~ as you should ~ you are going to enjoy quite a few benefits.

New Vocabulary Is Brain Food

Adding new words to your Vocabulary has quite a few perks.

It improves your  communication skills:

  • LISTENING ~ Language Acquisition
  • SPEAKING ~ Idea Development
  • READING ~ Comprehension & Word Recognition
  • WRITING ~ Expression & Grammatical Accuracy

It helps you to think and learn about the world.

It allows you greater access to new information.

AND ~~~~ it increases your intelligence!

Yes~ YOU READ THAT CORRECTLY!!!

Here’s more information on that mind-bending subject:

https://vocabularyzone.com/undeniable-link-vocabulary-iq/

The wonderful website Reading Rockets has a LOT of information and resources regarding the Value and Teaching of Vocabulary. Click to read:

https://www.readingrockets.org/reading-topics/vocabulary

You Can Help Your Child Increase Their Vocabulary

There are quite a few websites LOADED with fun & easy ideas for helping your child learn New Vocabulary.

https://www.theschoolrun.com/how-to-build-childs-vocabulary

https://www.edutopia.org/blog/vocabulary-instruction-teaching-tips-rebecca-alber

https://www.giftedguru.com/21_ideas_for_teaching_vocabulary/

https://imaginationsoup.net/teaching-kids-new-vocabulary-at-home/

https://bedrocklearning.org/blog/21-fun-ways-to-improve-your-childs-vocabulary/

And I have created several interactive, hands-on Games and Activities for learning the Vocabulary Words your child will be seeing, hearing, reading, and writing according to his/her current Grade Level.

CLAMDIGGER’S Summer Games for Boosting Vocabulary

Each of these Summer-themed Games contains Grade-Level Specific Vocabulary Word Lists collected from frequently cited reading texts ~ fictional and informational as well as academic terms used in the classroom on a daily basis.

The 7 games included follow Bloom’s Taxonomy sequence for increasing Critical Thinking Skills: 

  • The Vocabulary Guide presents a review of grammatical terms used to identify the components of Words ~ KNOWLEDGE.
  • Specific Game Sorts allows the learner to understand how each word follows certain rules  ~ COMPREHENSION by organizing, summarizing, translating & describing the wide range of categories Vocabulary Words can share.
  • Specific Word Activities provides opportunities for the learner to take what s/he knows & use it ~ APPLICATION of learned content to produce solutions  in a variety of problems.
  • Word Part Specific Charts, Lists & Tables enables the learner to use Critical Thinking  Skills for ~ ANALYSIS of learned Vocabulary Words into components by recognizing  the relationships of their different and/or similar elements.
  • Additional Vocabulary List gives the learner connections for making unknown words known ~SYNTHESIS of these diverse elements for building and strengthening Vocabulary acquisition.
  • And prepares the learner for ~ EVALUATION, then, provides opportunities for making judgements on newer, unknown Words by using the Skills attained from following the above sequence.

A Grade-Level Specific Literature List ~ see above BLB Resource Library link~ along with a general Lesson Plan are included.

A variety of Word categories are explored with each Vocabulary Word groups.

Vocabulary Word Groupings

These Summer-themed Vocabulary-Boosting Games cover the following Word Elements: 

  • Summer Blooms: Nouns & Verbs
  • Pool Party: Adjectives & Adverbs
  • Summer Fruit Basket: Prefixes, Suffixes & Root Words
  • Under The Sea: Synonyms & Antonyms
  • Sandcastles: Summer Compound Words
  • Summer Vocabulary Words Study: Third-30 words/Fourth-40 words/Fifth-50 words
  • Third-Contractions/Fourth-Homophones/Fifth-Heteronyms

And each of these Categories includes several components.

Vocabulary Word List Game Components

Each Game Unit includes these components:

  • Colorful Sort Mat Image
  • Matching Game Pieces
  • Storage Pocket with How-To-Play Directions
  • Fill-In Lists & Answer Sheets
  • A different Extension Activity per Game Unit with its Answer Sheet

Now, onto the Grade-Level Specific Summer Games with their TeachersPayTeachers Product links….

SUMMER GAMES: Boosting Third Grade~Level Vocabulary

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/SUMMER-GAMES-Boosting-3rd-Grade-Level-Vocabulary-6944754

SUMMER GAMES: Boosting Fourth Grade~Level Vocabulary

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/SUMMER-GAMES-Boosting-Fourth-Grade-Level-Vocabulary-6944778

SUMMER GAMES: Boosting Fourth Grade~Level Vocabulary

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/SUMMER-GAMES-Boosting-Fifth-Grade-Level-Vocabulary-6944813

SUMMER GAMES: Boosting Sixth Grade~Level Vocabulary

This one is a Freebie!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/SUMMER-GAMES-Boosting-Sixth-Grade-Level-Vocabulary-6948865

Oh ~ and remember I compiled CLAMDIGGERS’ Summer Literacy Enrichment Collection for you and yours.

Here’s the Overview link:

CLAMDIGGERS’ Summer Literacy Enrichment Collection

AAAAAAND~ I created a TpT Summer Activities Calendar entitled CLAMDIGGERS Summer Celebration Calendars to keep you and your BIZZY all Summer long!

Click here:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-Summer-Celebration-Calendars-6831968

Make this a Summer of Literacy Learning FUN!!!

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

 

Copyright©2021BizzyLizzyBiz

CLAMDIGGERS: July’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

 

 WELCOME

TO:

CLAMDIGGERS:  July’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

If you’re not barefoot, then you’re overdressed. ~ Anonymous

July is DEFINITELY a Summer month !

This HOT, HOT month if filled with activities & food to COOL, COOL you down ~ swimming, anything frosty & icy, non-heat cooking & eating (unless it’s a BBQ), fans, air co, shade, hammocks, shorts, flip-flops, sunglasses, and LOTS of sunscreen.

Our BIG summer celebration happens on The Fourth of July with lots of star-spangled fireworks to light up the Summer Night, which is usually full of the moon & stars. Many Tall Tales & Legends are shared on lazy Summer days & nights before & after hours of splishing & splashing in a cool body of water.

Opportunities for creative expressions in art, science, math, social studies, and writing are included in the four units of July’s activities.

Each and Every Unit of the Literacy Enrichment Collection

The Components of each Unit include:

  • colorful Front & Back covers
  • a Contents list
  • an Introduction Sequence
  • a Master Materials List
  • a Thematic Literature List of fiction& nonfiction trade books
  • an overall Lesson Plan
  • Projects/Activities with Construction Instructions written on an Independent Reading Level for Grades 3 ~ 6

Ready, Set and Go!

Preparation for each of these units can be done  by following this sequence:

  • Read over the Materials & Tools needed for each project in the Master Materials List ~ a component included with each Unit.
  • Gather the Materials & Tools together specific for each Activity ~ card-stock, printing paper, scissors, glue, pencil, colors, etc.
  • Protect your work space with a plastic, washable tablecloth, newspaper, or butcher paper ~ the latter invites doodling & checklists.
  • Read all the steps included in the Sequence part of the Instructions provided for each Project/Activity BEFORE beginning.
  • Keep a copy of these Construction Instructions close by, so you can re-read as you create.
  • Clean up your work space when you have completed what you wanted to do.

What Is the CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program?

Click on this link for more information on CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Read on for more Details on each Unit, but, first, take a look at July’s Poetry Posters to provide each Unit with a little focus.

CLAMDiggers’ July Poetry for the Literacy Enrichment Collection

During my years in the classroom, I discovered the best way to focus my students’ attention for new content was a choral read of thematic poetry written with colorful images.

July’s five poems are printed onto five thematic 8 ½ x 11″ images you can enlarge if needed. The font sizes are large as well.

You can access this PDF freebie in Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s TPT Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDIGGERS-Julys-Poetry-Posters-6879850

Independence Day

One flag, one land, one heart, one hand, one nation evermore. ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

Week One of CLAMDiggers:  July’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 19-page unit entitled Independence Day .

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Create a Star Streaming Patriotic Pinwheel by following the directions & using the pinwheel & stars template.
  • If you want to contribute a dish or two for the Fourth of July Eats, read & select some Food Ideas for A Star-Spangled Celebration to make and/or prepare the recipes included: Sandwich Stars & Lemon Star Punch with Red, White & Blue Salad and A Patriot’s Parfait .

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper,  glitters, ribbons, pencil/pen, colors, scissors, hole-punch, O-ring, bead/button, push pin, unused pencil, food prep ingredients

You can access the Independence Day unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Independence-Day-6880148

Summer Nights: Moon & Stars

Summer Night ~ even the stars are whispering to each other. ~ Kabayashi Issa

Week Two of CLAMDiggers: July’s  Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 20-page unit entitled Summer Nights: Moon & Stars.

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Study the phases of the moon after making the Moon Phases Shape Book.
  • Construct a Glow-in-the-Dark Mobile with special paper and/or craft foam for your room.
  •  All that star-gazing will, hopefully, inspire you to Create A Constellation & Its Story to tuck inside the book cover template.

General Supply List:  card-stock, printing paper,  binding materials, pencil, colors, scissors, ruler, glue, stapler, string, black paper

You can access the Summer Nights: Moon & Stars unit by  clicking on the link below:

  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/SUMMER-NIGHTS-Moon-Stars-6880207

Tall Tales & Legends

The thing about legends is…..sometimes, they’re true. ~Caretaker from the movie “Ghost Rider”

Week Three of CLAMDiggers: July’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a  42-page unit entitled Tall Tales & Legends.

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Put together & play the Am I A Tall Tale Or A Legend? game.
  • Read the Tall Tale Guide & Tell Me A Tall Tale.
  • Then, turn the Tale into a script and play with players for the Tall Tale Theater.

General Supply List: cardstock, printing paper, pencil, colors, scissors, binding, play production tools & materials

You can access the Tall Tales & Legends unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/American-Tall-Tales-Legends-6880264

Fun in the Water: Oceans, Lakes & Rivers

Water is the driving force of all Nature. ~ Leonardo da Vinci

Week Four of CLAMDiggers: May’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 36-page unit entitled Fun in the Water: Oceans, Lakes & Rivers.

  It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Learn the difference between salty & fresh waters when you construct & play several sort & match games with What Do You Know About Water, Water Everywhere ?
  • Build Tiny Islands in the Sea and record your observations of their growth on a data chart.
  • Make a water safety poster & sort game when learning about Water Safety & Water Fun.
  • Create a Water Safety & Fun Memory Books Mobile with a variety of book cover images.

General Supply List: heavy printing paper,  cardstock, scissors, glue, tape, stapler, rubber bands, veggie tops & bottoms, book binding material, white poster board, colors, blue & green cardstock, notebook paper, pony beads, fishing line, crimps, hole punch, paper clips, pliers, ruler

You can access the Fun in the Water: Oceans, Lakes & Rivers unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FUN-IN-THE-WATER-Oceans-Lakes-Rivers-6880354

How About a Bundle ?!?

You can  access CLAMDiggers:  July’s Literacy Enrichment Collection units individually or as a 4-Unit bundle for your convenience & savings.

Just click on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDIGGERS-Julys-4-Unit-Bundle-6880387

AND….as an added appreciation bonus…..

Here are two PDF freebies to thank you for reading!

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

P.S. I included a Collection of Products, Resources & Freebies for a Summertime of Activities. You can access this read on my   blog : https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/clamdiggers-summer-literacy-enrichment-collection/

P.S.S. My TpT Shop has a Summertime Freebie: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Summer-Memory-Makers-6831876

and a Summertime Product Unit : https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-Summer-Celebration-Calendars-6831968

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

 

Copyright©2021BizzyLizzyBiz

 

CLAMDIGGERS: June’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

 

 WELCOME

TO:

CLAMDIGGERS:  June’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm. ~R.W.Emerson

How very lovely is the month of June !

There’s still enough Spring in the air with its gentle breezes to cool off Summer’s warming sun! Long vacations are on the horizon with camp outs, street fairs, amusement parks , and farmers’ markets gaining more attention.

It’s the perfect time to celebrate Fathers’ Day; organize some Summer Solstice Backyard Fun with friends, family & neighbors; go on the long-awaited vacation to a favorite haunt and/or a new, exciting place; and, of course, before the warm weather becomes HOT, enjoy The Sun with all its sparkle.

Opportunities for creative expressions in art, science, math, social studies, and writing are included in the four units of June’s activities.

Each and Every Unit of the Literacy Enrichment Collection

The Components of each Unit include:

  • colorful Front & Back covers
  • a Contents list
  • an Introduction Sequence
  • a Master Materials List
  • a Thematic Literature List of fiction& nonfiction trade books
  • an overall Lesson Plan
  • Projects/Activities with Construction Instructions written on an Independent Reading Level for Grades 3 ~ 6

Ready, Set and Go!

Preparation for each of these units can be done  by following this sequence:

  • Read over the Materials & Tools needed for each project in the Master Materials List ~ a component included with each Unit.
  • Gather the Materials & Tools together specific for each Activity ~ card-stock, printing paper, scissors, glue, pencil, colors, etc.
  • Protect your work space with a plastic, washable tablecloth, newspaper, or butcher paper ~ the latter invites doodling & checklists.
  • Read all the steps included in the Sequence part of the Instructions provided for each Project/Activity BEFORE beginning.
  • Keep a copy of these Construction Instructions close by, so you can re-read as you create.
  • Clean up your work space when you have completed what you wanted to do.

What Is the CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program?

Click on this link for more information on CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Read on for more Details on each Unit, but, first, take a look at June’s Poetry Posters to provide each Unit with a little focus.

CLAMDiggers’ June Poetry for the Literacy Enrichment Collection

During my years in the classroom, I discovered the best way to focus my students’ attention for new content was a choral read of thematic poetry written with colorful images.

June’s five poems are printed onto five thematic 8 ½ x 11″ images you can enlarge if needed. The font sizes are large as well.

You can access this PDF freebie in Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s TPT Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDIGGERS-June-Poetry-Posters-6866768

THE SUN

The sun does not shine for a few trees and flowers, but the wide world’s joy. ~Henry Ward Beecher

Week One of CLAMDiggers:  June’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 20-page unit entitled THE SUN .

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • A Facts About Our Sun Sheet to include in an informative text  entitled Our Sun Book
  • A Sun Sparkle Catcher includes how-to make directions for   constructing a beaded singular sun-mobile to hang in a  sun-catching window.
  • The Sun Mosaic is a piece of art you will create to symbolize the colors of the bright, glowing sun.
  • Write a storybook about the sun’s HEAT after collecting some reactions from others: “The Sun Was SOOOOO HOT……”

General Supply List:  card-stock, printing paper,  black poster-board, colored paper scraps, scissors, glue, binding, wire, chenille stems, pony beads, monofilament, crimp, wire cutters

You can access  THE SUN unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/THE-SUN-6866847

Fathers’ Day

A father is someone you look up to no matter how tall you grow. ~ Anonymous

Week Two of CLAMDiggers: June’s  Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 16-page unit entitled Fathers’ Day.

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • A Race Car Magnet includes Construction Instructions, Tracer Templates, and other race car model ideas.
  • Wrap your gift inside a Gift Box you have folded with a gift tag you’ve chosen from several tags.

General Supply List:  card-stock, printing paper,  craft foam, magnet strip, tacky glue, scissors, colors, paper clips, pencil

You can access the Fathers’ Day unit by  clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Fathers-Day-6866931

Backyard Summer Fun

Anyone can go on an adventure, even if it’s in your own backyard. ~ Carmela Dutra

Week Three of CLAMDiggers: June’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a  56-page unit entitled Backyard Summer Fun.

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • A Backyard Fun Eco ~ Fair includes the planning, organizing, activities/games ideas with how-to direction cards, supply lists, and the images you’ll need to post at each site.
  • The seasonal NatureWatchers’ Summer Journal comes with the journal covers, page inserts , and vocabulary list. 

General Supply List: cardstock, printing paper,  pencil, colors, scissors, binding, O-ring, hole punch, specific Fair supplies

You can access the Backyard Summer Fun unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Backyard-Summer-Fun-6866987

Going On Vacation

A vacation is having nothing to do all day and all day to do it. ~Robert Orben

Week Four of CLAMDiggers: June’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 36-page unit entitled Going On Vacation.

  It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Make & decorate a Brown Bag Backpack from a paper grocery bag to hold all your Travel Games.
  • The Travel Activities Overview lets you decide which projects you want to create & include in your Brown Bag Backpack.
  • There are over 6 different Travel Games you can make to take with you to play while you go on vacation.
  • Write about your vacation adventures in My Travel Journal you download, print & put together.
  • Don’t forget to correspond with family & friends while you’re on vacation on your “Wish You Were Here….”  Stationery.

General Supply List: large paper grocery bag, cloth strips, brad fasteners, string,, stapler, scissors, ruler, markers, glue, cardstock, game materials, printing paper, binding, pencil, stickers

You can access the Going On Vacation unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Going-On-Vacation-6867091

 How About a Bundle ?!?

You can  access CLAMDiggers:  June’s Literacy Enrichment Collection units individually or as a 4-Unit bundle for your convenience & savings.

Just click on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-June-A-4-Unit-Bundle-6867291

AND….as an added appreciation bonus…..

Here are two PDF freebies to thank you for reading!

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

 

P.S. I included a Collection of Products, Resources & Freebies for a Summertime of Activities. You can access this read on my   blog : https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/clamdiggers-summer-literacy-enrichment-collection/

P.S.S. My TpT Shop has a Summertime Freebie: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Summer-Memory-Makers-6831876

and a Summertime Product Unit : https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-Summer-Celebration-Calendars-6831968

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

 

Copyright©2021BizzyLizzyBiz

CLAMDIGGERS: May’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

 WELCOME

TO:

CLAMDIGGERS: May’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

Nature is the art of God. ~Dante Alighieri

What a merry, merry month May is !

Artists celebrate this month with songs, poetry, and paintings. Warm breezes with plenty of sunshine invite all of Earth’s living  things to frolic through soft, grassy fields of wildflowers and wade in its warming waters.

It’s the perfect time to celebrate Mothers’ Day, giggle at Baby Animals, give your Bicycle a tune up, ride around your Neighborhood, and go on a Picnic with friends.

Opportunities for creative expressions in art, science, math, social studies, and writing are included in the five units of May’s activities.

Each and Every Unit of the Literacy Enrichment Collection

The Components of each Unit include:

  • colorful Front & Back covers
  • a Contents list
  • an Introduction Sequence
  • a Master Materials List
  • a Thematic Literature List of fiction& nonfiction trade books
  • an overall Lesson Plan
  • Projects/Activities with Construction Instructions written on an Independent Reading Level for Grades 3 ~ 6

Ready, Set and Go!

Preparation for each of these units can be done  by following this sequence:

  • Read over the Materials & Tools needed for each project in the Master Materials List ~ a component included with each Unit.
  • Gather the Materials & Tools together specific for each Activity ~ card-stock, printing paper, scissors, glue, pencil, colors, etc.
  • Protect your work space with a plastic, washable tablecloth, newspaper, or butcher paper ~ the latter invites doodling & checklists.
  • Read all the steps included in the Sequence part of the Instructions provided for each Project/Activity BEFORE beginning.
  • Keep a copy of these Construction Instructions close by, so you can re-read as you create.
  • Clean up your work space when you have completed what you wanted to do.

What Is the CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program?

Click on this link for more information on CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Read on for more Details on each Unit, but, first, take a look at May’s Poetry Posters to provide each Unit with a little focus.

CLAMDiggers’ May Poetry for the Literacy Enrichment Collection

During my years in the classroom, I discovered the best way to focus my students’ attention for new content was a choral read of thematic poetry written with colorful images.

May’s six poems are printed onto six thematic 8 ½ x 11″ images you can enlarge if needed. The font sizes are large as well.

You can access this PDF freebie in Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s TPT Shop by clicking on this link:

  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-May-Poetry-Posters-6779604

Mothers’ Day

A mother understands what a child does not say. ~ Jewish Proverb

Week One of CLAMDiggers:  May’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 16-page unit entitled Mothers’  Day .

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • An I LOVE YOU Fan includes how-to make directions for constructing a large, usable Fan with Sample Sentences to choose for writing on each fold.
  • A Tea Party for Mom contains Invitation Templates, a Tea Party Checklist with a Sample Place Setting Diagram, and several Food preparation ideas.

General Supply List: file folder, card-stock, printing paper,  decorative paper, ribbon, pencil/pen, ruler, scissors, tacky glue, clothespins, food & tea ingredients

You can access the Mothers’ Day unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Mothers-Day-6779662

Baby Animals

Animals are born who they are, accept it, and that is that. ~Gregory Maguire

Week Two of CLAMDiggers: May’s  Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 16-page unit entitled Baby Animals.

It contains the following Project/Activity:

  • A Baby Animals Pop-Up Book includes Construction Instructions, Cover/Page Insert Template, Info Chart with Blank Fill-In Template. Baby Animal Photos, And a Vocabulary List.

General Supply List:  card-stock, printing paper,  binding materials, pencil, colors, scissors, ruler, glue,double-stick tape

You can access the Baby Animals Pop-Up Book unit by  clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Baby-Animals-6779721

Bicycle Fun & Safety

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~ Albert Einstein

Week Three of CLAMDiggers: May’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a  21-page unit entitled Bicycle Fun & Safety.

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • You & Your Bicycle offers Bicycle Adventure Ideas, a Bicycle Parts Diagram with a Checklist, and a Pre-Riding Safety List.
  • Bicycle Safety includes a Bicycle Safety Checklist paired with a mini-quiz for testing  Safety Knowledge.
  • A Bicycle Fun & Safety Shape Book has a Covers & Page Insert Template for making a Memory Book.

General Supply List: cardstock, printing paper, O-ring, hole punch, pencil, colors, scissors, binding

You can access the Bicycle Fun & Safety unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Bicycle-Fun-Safety-6779767

Neighbors in the Neighborhood

The whole world is one neighborhood. ~ Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Week Four of CLAMDiggers: May’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 22-page unit entitled Neighbors in the Neighborhood.

  It contains the following Project/Activity:

  • Design A Neighborhood includes Construction Instructions for building a Neighborhood with Places, Street Names, Building Names, Map Key & Compass for a Make-A-Map, and Building Faces Templates.

General Supply List: heavy printing paper,  cardstock, straws, play dough, green poster board, small chipboard boxes, black construction paper, colored paper & cardstock scraps, pencil, ruler, scissors, tacky glue, colors, tape, sticky notes

You can access the Neighbors in the Neighborhood unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Neighbors-in-the-Neighborhood-6779824

Let’s Have A Picnic

Nothing’s better than a picnic. ~ Zooey Deschanel

Week Five of CLAMDiggers: May’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 24-page unit entitled Let’s Have A Picnic.

  It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Plan A Picnic includes Picnic ~ Menu Ideas, a Sample Menu with Blank Menu Templates, 5 Picnic Recipe Cards with several Blank Recipe Cards & Collection Covers,   Lists for Eco-Packing a Picnic, and Invitations for Indoor/Outdoor Picnics.
  • Make  A Sit-Upon gives Instructions for Constructing a Indoor/Outdoor seating mat.

General Supply List: heavy printing paper,  cardstock, colored cardstock scraps, colors, white grease pencil, scissors, hole-punch, O-ring, newspapers, oilcloth, clothespins, tacky glue.

You can access the Let’s Have A Picnic unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Lets-Have-A-Picnic-6779852

 How About a Bundle ?!?

You can  access CLAMDiggers:  May’s Literacy Enrichment Collection units individually or as a 5-Unit bundle for your convenience & savings.

Just click on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-May-A-5-Unit-Bundle-6782072

AND….as an added appreciation bonus…..

Here are two PDF freebies to thank you for reading!

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

Copyright©2021BizzyLizzyBiz

 

CLAMDIGGERS: April’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

 WELCOME

TO:

CLAMDIGGERS: April’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

Winter’s done, and April’s in the skies; Earth, look up with laughter in your eyes! ~ Ch.G.D.Roberts

Rain, rain, rain is usually the song April sings as it welcomes Spring and its bright greenery, vibrant flowers, and new baby animals. It almost appears to be magical how the Earth transforms from gray and white to a rainbow of colors everywhere!

April’s Magic can encourage your flights of fantasy into the world of Fairy Tales, inspire your creative side during Cloudy & Rainy days, empower your Earth~Saver awareness, and strengthen your respect for the beauty, diversity and power of Trees.

Opportunities for creative expressions in art, science, math, social studies, and writing are included in April’s activities.

Each and Every Unit of the Literacy Enrichment Collection

The Components of each Unit include:

  • colorful Front & Back covers
  • a Contents list
  • an Introduction Sequence
  • a Master Materials List
  • a Thematic Literature List of fiction& nonfiction trade books
  • an overall Lesson Plan
  • Projects/Activities with Construction Instructions written on an Independent Reading Level for Grades 3 ~ 6

Ready, Set and Go!

Preparation for each of these units can be done  by following this sequence:

  • Read over the Materials & Tools needed for each project in the Master Materials List ~ a component included with each Unit.
  • Gather the Materials & Tools together specific for each Activity ~ card-stock, printing paper, scissors, glue, pencil, colors, etc.
  • Protect your work space with a plastic, washable tablecloth, newspaper, or butcher paper ~ the latter invites doodling & checklists.
  • Read all the steps included in the Sequence part of the Instructions provided for each Project/Activity BEFORE beginning.
  • Keep a copy of these Construction Instructions close by, so you can re-read as you create.
  • Clean up your work space when you have completed what you wanted to do.

What Is the CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program?

Click on this link for more information on CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Read on for more Details on each Unit, but, first, take a look at April’s Poetry Posters to provide each Unit with a little focus.

CLAMDiggers’ April Poetry for the Literacy Enrichment Collection

During my years in the classroom, I discovered the best way to focus my students’ attention for new content was a choral read of thematic poetry written with colorful images.

April’s five poems are printed onto five thematic 8 ½ x 11″ images you can enlarge if needed. The font sizes are large as well.

You can access this PDF freebie in Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s TPT Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-April-Poetry-Posters-6686360

Fairy Tales

Everything you look at can become a fairy tale and you get a story from everything you touch. ~Hans Christian Anderson

Week One of CLAMDiggers:  April’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 33-page unit entitled Fairy Tales. 

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Fairy Tale Kingdom Board Game includes how-to make directions & placement Diagrams using a File Folder with Images/Labels,  Game Cards, Treasure Coins & an Answer Scroll
  • Pixie Puffs & A Magic Potion are recipes to make & eat while playing the Fairy Tale Kingdom Board Game

General Supply List: file folder, card-stock, printing paper,  paint sample cards, small yellow sticker dots, small toy animals, feather, star cluster, large button, ribbon, rubber bands, scissors, ruler, glue stick, large paper clips, baggies, recipe ingredients, cooking & serving tools/ utensils

You can access the Fairy Tales unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Fairy-Tales-6686403

Clouds & Rain

There is a way out of every dark mist, over the rainbow trail. ~ Navaho Song

Week Two of CLAMDiggers: April’s  Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 40-page unit entitled Clouds & Rain.

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Cloud Study Booklet includes informative text, images & an observation log with  Comprehension & Vocabulary Fill-In components
  • Rainy Day Activities Poster provides directions, images and multiple Rainy Day Activities

General Supply List:  card-stock, printing paper,  binding materials, pencil, colors, scissors, ruler, glue, poster board, removable tape

You can access the Clouds & Rain unit by  clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Clouds-Rain-6686444

Earth Day Every Day

Nature does nothing uselessly. ~ Aristotle

Week Three of CLAMDiggers: April’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a  36-page unit entitled Earth Day Every Day.

It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Eco ~ Desk Set: Upcycle Chipboard, Tin Cans & A CD includes a Recyclable Diagram with How-To make directions
  • 5 Upcycle ~ Action Lists calls all  upcyclers to create projects with Activity Cards for  reusing milk jugs, plastic bottles, tin cans, old socks and more
  • Earth Walk Journal: Track Your Carbon Footprint provides Earth-Savers  an opportunity to document  their progress with template inserts on tips for eco-friendly actions

General Supply List: chipboard boxes,  contact paper, metal cans, old CD, scissors, tacky glue, felt, printing paper, cardstock, hole punch, O-ring, laminate, pencil, binding materials

You can access the Earth Day Every Day unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Earth-Day-Every-Day-6686518

Arbor Day: A Celebration of Trees

Shade outstretch, wide and free; Grow well, good tree! ~ N.B. Turner

Week Four of CLAMDiggers: April’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 31-page unit entitled Arbor Day: A Celebration of Trees.

  It contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • Hello, Trees !  includes a collection of information formatted in cards, a diagram, leaf identification, tree sort game with  comprehension & vocabulary components
  • Hug A Tree Book provides the reader with informative text for writing & illustrating a book
  • Make A Twig Frame comes with sequential directions and a visual How-To diagram
  • Tree of Life Wall Sculpture gives step-by-step instructions for constructing a 2 (or 3) dimensional tree sculpture

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, binding materials, pencil, colors, construction paper, paper scraps, glues, tape, stapler, scissors, twigs, cardboard, photo, heavy book, brown kraft/butcher paper, brown paper bags, decorative papers

You can access the Arbor Day: A Celebration of Trees unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Arbor-Day-A-Celebration-of-Trees-6686564

 How About a Bundle ?!?

You can  access CLAMDiggers:  April’s Literacy Enrichment Collection units individually or as a 4-Unit bundle for your convenience & savings.

Just click on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDIGGERS-April-A-Four-Unit-Bundle-6686675

AND….as an added appreciation bonus…..

Here are two PDF freebies to thank you for reading!

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

 

Copyright©2021BizzyLizzyBiz

 

CLAMDiggers: December’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

 WELCOME

TO:

CLAMDiggers: December’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

CLAMDiggers December cover

The manner of giving is worth more than the gift. ~P. Corneille

The hustle and bustle of December is a month filled with festive memories ~ past, present & future, delicious & fragrant aromas~ inside & outside, exciting possibilities ~ every day & to come, and multiple celebrations of traditions~ old & new. In my opinion ~ ’tis not a Day, but a Season!

CLAMDiggers’ December Literacy Enrichment Collection includes six of these events:

  • Remembering an Early American Christmas
  • Including the Gifts of Nature with Oh! Christmas Tree!
  • Exploring the Mysteries of Santa and His Reindeer
  • Recognizing the Traditions of Hanukkah
  • Discovering the Principles of Kwanzaa
  • Celebrating the New Year to come

Each and Every Unit of the Literacy Enrichment Collection

The Components of each Unit include:

  • colorful Front & Back covers
  • a Contents list
  • an Introduction Sequence
  • a Master Materials List
  • a Thematic Literature List of fiction& nonfiction trade books
  • an overall Lesson Plan
  • Projects/Activities with Construction Instructions written on an Independent Reading Level for Grades 3 ~ 6

Ready, Set and Go!

Preparation for each of these units can be done  by following this sequence:

  • Read over the Materials & Tools needed for each project in the Master Materials List ~ a component included with each Unit.
  • Gather the Materials & Tools together specific for each Activity ~ card-stock, printing paper, scissors, glue, pencil, colors, etc.
  • Protect your work space with a plastic, washable tablecloth, newspaper, or butcher paper ~ the latter invites doodling & checklists.
  • Read all the steps included in the Sequence part of the Instructions provided for each Project/Activity BEFORE beginning.
  • Keep a copy of these Construction Instructions close by, so you can re-read as you create.
  • Clean up your work space when you have completed what you wanted to do.

What Is the CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program?

Click on this link for more information on CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Read on for more Details on each Unit, but, first, take a look at December’s Poetry Posters to provide each Unit with a little focus.

CLAMDiggers’ December Poetry for the Literacy Enrichment Collection

During my years in the classroom, I discovered the best way to focus my students’ attention for new content was a choral read of thematic poetry written with colorful images.

December’s seven poems are printed onto seven thematic 8 ½ x 11″ images you can enlarge if needed. The font sizes are large as well.

You can access this PDF freebie in Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s TPT Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDIGGERS-December-Poetry-Posters-6218170

An Early American Christmas

An Early American ChristmasSmall cheer and great welcome makes a merry feast. ~William Shakespeare

Week One of CLAMDiggers: December’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 35-page unit entitled An Early American Christmas. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

EarlyAmericanChristmasGame
Earl American Christmas Game

  •  Merry Christmas, America ! : A Melting Pot Match Game of Our Traditions

    EarlyAmericanChristmasMemoir,Ornament&FamilyCoupons
    Early American Christmas Memoir, Ornament & Family Coupons
  • A Frontier Christmas Memory: A Nine-Page Mini-Storybook with a Vocabulary Challenge
  • Quilted Star Ornament: A Template with Construction Instructions
  • Family Coupon Book: Template Covers, Inserts & Coupon Ideas

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, binding, wallpaper, decorative papers, fabric scraps, craft paper, construction paper, ribbons, buttons, colors, glue, stapler, scissors, hole punch, O-ring

You can access the An Early American Christmas unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/An-Early-American-Christmas-6218217

Oh! Christmas Tree!

The whole world is a Christmas Tree; And stars its many candles be. ~H. Blodgett

Week Two of CLAMDiggers: December’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a  31-page unit entitled Oh! Christmas Tree!. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

Oh!ChristmasTree!TrioofTrees&PineconePair
Oh!Christmas Tree!Trio of Trees & Pinecone Pair

  • A Trio of Trees: Templates for a 3-D Sculpture
  • A Pair of Pine-Cone Presents: Ornaments & Trees

    Oh!ChristmasTree!GatheringGuide+BirdFeeding
    Oh!Christmas Tree! Gathering Guide+Bird Feeding
  • Nature’s Decorations: A Gathering Guide
  • Seasons Greetings, Nature: Bird Feeders & Menu Ideas

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, decorative papers, binding, plant clippers, gathering container, pine-cones, beads, paintbrush, bird foods,  scissors, tacky glue, glue stick, glitz, pencil, colors

You can access the Oh! Christmas Tree! unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Oh-Christmas-Tree-6218258

Santa and His Reindeer

There seems to be magic in the very name of Christmas. ~Charles Dickens

Week Three of CLAMDiggers: December’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a   33-page unit entitled Santa and His Reindeer. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

Santa+HisReindeerWreath,GiftBag, Manual
Santa+His Reindeer Wreath, GiftBag + Manual

  •  Santa’s Reindeer Flight Plan: A 7-Page Booklet with Fill-In Info
  • Just For Fun!: Color & Cut-Out Santa & His Reindeer Wreath
  • Reindeer Gift Bag: Template & Construction Instructions

Santa&HisReindeerGame
Santa & His Reindeer Game

  • Real Reindeer: A True/False Game

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, binding,  pencil, colors, glitz, ribbon,  scissors, glue, hole-punch, O-ring, stapler, heavy tape, Web access, reference books

You can access the Santa and His Reindeer unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Santa-and-His-Reindeer-6218381

Hanukkah

HanukkahA candle is a small thing; but one candle can light another. ~Moeshe Davis

Week Four of CLAMDiggers: December’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 18-page unit entitled Hanukkah. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

Hanukkah
Hanukkah

  • Star of David Ornament: Template with Construction Instructions
  • Lotsa Latkes with Applesauce & Some Matzo Ball Soup, Too!: Ingredients & Cookware List with Recipes
  • Hanukkah Memories Mini Fold -Up Book: Template with Diagram

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, construction paper, glitter, ribbon, recipe ingredients, pencil, colors, scissors, stapler

You can access the Hanukkah unit by clicking on the link below:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Hanukkah-6218430

Kwanzaa

If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. ~African Proverb

Week Five  of CLAMDiggers: December’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 15-page unit entitled Kwanzaa.. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

KwanzaaSevenPrinciplesBowl
Kwanzaa Seven Principles Bowl

  • A Harvest Bowl of Principles: Construction Instructions for A Poster with Image & Text Templates

KwanzaaMkekaMat
Kwanzaa Mkeka Mat

  • Make A Mkeka: Construction Instructions

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, construction paper, black marker, ruler, scissors, glue, framing materials, hole-punch, raffia, laminant or clear contact paper

You can access the Kwanzaa unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Kwanzaa-6218485

The New Year

There are far better things ahead than any we leave behind. ~C.S. Lewis

The final week  of CLAMDiggers: December’s Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 15-page unit entitled New Year. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

New Year
New Year

  • The Best & Worst of Last Year: A Memories Book with A Best/Worst  Choice List
  • New Year Wishes Basket: Construction Instructions with Wish Ideas

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, binding, pencil, colors, paper plates, paper scraps, glitz, ribbon, scissors, glue, hole-punch

You can access the New Year unit by clicking on the link below:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/New-Year-6218527

How About a Bundle ?!?

You can  access CLAMDiggers’  December Literacy Enrichment Collection units individually or as a 6-Unit bundle for your convenience & savings. Just click on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDIGGERS-December-A-6-Unit-Bundle-6218752

AND….as an added appreciation bonus…..

Here are two PDF freebies to thank you for reading!

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

 

Copyright©2020BizzyLizzyBiz

 

CLAMDiggers: November’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

 WELCOME

 TO:

CLAMDIGGERS: NOVEMBER’S LITERACY ENRICHMENT COLLECTION

You won’t be happy with more until you’re happy with what you’ve got. ~ V. King

Crisp November is a  month full of creativity, discovery, and gratitude. CLAMDiggers: November’s Literacy Enrichment Collection includes four of these events:

  • Engaging in an Autumn Fantasy
  • Exploring Long Ago to Modern Day
  • Discovering the Influence of Our Native Americans
  • Preparing for Giving Thanks

The Components of each Unit include:

  • colorful Front & Back covers
  • a Contents list
  • an Introduction Sequence
  • a Master Materials List
  • a Thematic Literature List of fiction& nonfiction trade books
  • an overall Lesson Plan
  • Projects/Activities with Construction Instructions written on an Independent Reading Level for Grades 3 ~ 6

Preparation for each of these units can be done  by following this sequence:

  • Read over the Materials & Tools needed for each project in the Master Materials List ~ a component included with each Unit.
  • Gather the Materials & Tools together specific for each Activity ~ card-stock, printing paper, scissors, glue, pencil, colors, etc.
  • Protect your work space with a plastic, washable tablecloth, newspaper, or butcher paper ~ the latter invites doodling & checklists.
  • Read all the steps included in the Sequence part of the Instructions provided for each Project/Activity BEFORE beginning.
  • Keep a copy of these Construction Instructions close by, so you can re-read as you create.
  • Clean up your work space when you have completed what you wanted to do.

Click on this link for more information on CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Read on for more Details on each Unit, but, first, take a look at November’s Poetry Posters to provide each Unit with a little focus.

CLAMDiggers’ November Poetry

During my years in the classroom, I discovered the best way to focus my students’ attention for new content was a choral read of thematic poetry written with colorful images.

November’s five poems are printed onto five thematic 8 ½ x 11″ images you can enlarge if needed. The font sizes are large as well.

You can access this PDF freebie in Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s TPT Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDIGGERS-November-Poetry-Posters-6120613

Autumn Fantasy

Let cheerfulness abound with industry. ~ R.L. Stevenson

CLMDgrsNov: Autumn Fantasy
CLMDgrsNov: Autumn Fantasy

 Week One of CLAMDiggers’ November Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 22-page unit entitled Autumn Fantasy . It contains the following Projects/Activities:

CLMDgrsNovUnit: AutumnFantasyProducts
Autumn Fantasy: Dancing Scarecrow, Barnyard Hoedown Diorama + Music Maker

  • DANCING SCARECROW: Template with Construction Instructions
  • MUSIC MAKER; Construction Instructions
  • BARNYARD HOE~DOWN DIORAMA: Farm Animal Templates with Construction Instructions

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, wallpaper, decorative papers, craft paper, construction paper, open diorama box, yarn, raffia, paper plates, large craft stick, dried beans, colors, glue, stapler, scissors

You can access the Autumn Fantasy unit by clicking on the link below:

  https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Autumn-Fantasy-6120722

Then And Now

Change is the law of life. ~ J.F. Kennedy

CLMDgrsNov: Then and Now
CLMDgrsNov: Then and Now

Week Two of CLAMDigger’s November Literacy Enrichment Colllection is a  55-page unit entitled Then And Now . It contains the following Projects/Activities:

CLMDgrsNovUnit: Then and Now Products
Long Ago to Modern Day: Card Match and Vocabulary Game, Mini-Info Book Connecting the Past with the Present + Toys Will Be Toys Informational Text

  • LONG AGO TO MODERN DAY: A Card Match & Vocabulary Game
  • FROM THE PAST TO THE PRESENT: A Mini-Info Book Connecting the Past with the Present
  • TOYS WILL BE TOYS: Comparing & Contrasting Long Ago & Modern Day Toys Using Informative Text

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, binding material, pencil, colors,  rubber bands, scissors, highlighter, fine-point marker, dry-erase marker,

You can access the Then And Now unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Then-and-Now-6120874

Native Americans

Teach us to walk the soft earth as relatives to all that live. ~Sioux Prayer

CLMDgrsNov: Native Americans
CLMDgrsNov: Native Americans

Week Three of CLAMDiggers’ November Literacy Enrichment Collection is a   25-page unit entitled Native Americans. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

CLMDgrsNovUnit:Native AmericansProducts
Native American Words We Use Match Game, Fill-In Comprehension, Sacred Animal Sand Painting + Dream Catcher

  • NATIVE AMERICAN WORDS WE USE: Photo & Vocabulary Match Game with Fill-In Comprehension Activity
  • SACRED ANIMAL TOTEM SAND PAINTING :Some Animal Images with Construction Instructions
  • DREAM CATCHER: Construction Instructions

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, pencil, colors, glues, scissors, dictionary, colored sand, paintbrushes, small bowls, beads, feathers, yarn, paper plate, glitz

You can access the Native Americans unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Native-Americans-6120967

Giving Thanks

Take a rest; the field that has rested gives a bountiful crop. ~ Ovid

CLMDgrsNov: Giving Thanks
CLMDgrsNov: Giving Thanks

Week Four of CLAMDiggers’ November Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 20-page unit entitled Giving Thanks. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

CLMDgrsNovUnit: Giving Thanks Products2
Giving Thanks Wreath + Giving Thanks Placecards

  • LET US GIVE THANKS WREATH
  • LET US GIVE THANKS PLACE~CARDS

CLMDgrsNovUnit: Giving Thanks Products1
Giving Thanks Mini Poster + Placecards

  • LET US GIVE THANKS MINI POSTER

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, dry bean soup mix, heavy-weight paper plates, raffia, tacky glue, pencil, 8 X 10 picture frame, colors, scissors

You can access the Giving Thanks unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Giving-Thanks-6121058

 

You can  access CLAMDiggers’  November Literacy Enrichment Collection units individually or as a 4-Unit bundle for your convenience & savings. Just click on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDIGGERS-November-A-4-Unit-Bundle-6121225

AND….as an added appreciation bonus…..

Here are two PDF freebies to thank you for reading!

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

 

Copyright©2020BizzyLizzyBiz

CLAMDiggers: October’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

 WELCOME

TO:

CLAMDIGGERS: October’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

The wind walks wildly in the trees tonight. ~ JT Stickney

Mysterious October is a  month full of exploration, discovery, color, and imagination. CLAMDIGGERS: October’s Literacy Enrichment Collection includes four of these events:

  • Celebrating Country & City Pets
  • Discovering Old World Explorations
  • Learning & Applying Healthy Nutrition
  • Enjoying the Fun of Halloween

The Components of each Unit include:

  • colorful Front & Back covers
  • a Contents list
  • an Introduction Sequence
  • a Master Materials List
  • A thematic Literature List of fiction& nonfiction trade books
  • an overall Lesson Plan
  • Projects/Activities with Construction Instructions written on an Independent Reading Level for Grades 3 ~ 6

Preparation for each of these units can be done  by following this sequence:

  • Read over the Materials & Tools needed for each project in the Master Materials List ~ a component included with each Unit.
  • Gather the Materials & Tools together specific for each Activity ~ card-stock, printing paper, scissors, glue, pencil, colors, etc.
  • Protect your work space with a plastic, washable tablecloth, newspaper, or butcher paper ~ the latter invites doodling & checklists.
  • Read all the steps included in the Sequence part of the Instructions provided for each Project/Activity BEFORE beginning.
  • Keep a copy of these Construction Instructions close by, so you can re-read as you create.
  • Clean up your work space when you have completed what you wanted to do.

Click on this link for more information on CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Read on for more Details on each Unit, but, first, take a look at October’s Poetry Posters to provide each Unit with a little focus.

CLAMDiggers’ October Poetry

During my years in the classroom, I discovered the best way to focus my students’ attention for new content was a choral read of thematic poetry written with colorful images.

October’s five poems are printed onto six thematic 8 ½ x 11″ images you can enlarge if needed. The font sizes are large as well.

You can access this PDF freebie in Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s TPT Shop by clicking on this link:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-October-Poetry-Posters-6022128

We LOVE Pets

Animals are such agreeable friends they ask no questions, they pass no criticisms. ~George Eliot

CLMDgrsOct:We Love Pets
CLMDgrsOct: We Love Pets

 Week One of CLAMDigger’s October Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 30-page unit entitled We LOVE Pets . It contains the following Projects/Activities:

Oct: Pets Care Manual
Oct:Pets Care Manual

  • COUNTRY PETS / CITY PETS: A PET~CARE MANUAL

Oct: Pets Poster Parade
Oct: Pets Poster Parade

  • SHOW & TELL PET PARADE

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, pencil, colors, glue- stick,  scissors, binding materials, reference materials, envelopes/stamps, poster board, pet photos, mementos

You can access the We LOVE Pets unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/We-LOVE-Pets-6022312

Old World Explorations

Exploration is wired into our brains. If we can see the horizon, we want to know what’s beyond. ~Buzz Aldrin

CLMDgrsOct: Old World Explorations
CLMDgrsOct: Old World Explorations

Week Two of CLAMDigger’s October Literacy Enrichment Colllection is a  53-page unit entitled Old World Explorations . It contains the following Projects/Activities:

Oct: Ship & Game Cards
Oct: Ship & Game Cards

  • SETTING SAIL: Parts & Provisions of the Seafaring Vessel

Oct: Game Board
Oct: Game Board

  • INTO THE NEW WORLD: An Exploration Board Game

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, pencil, colors,  rubber bands, scissors, glue stick, tape/stapler, blue poster board, blue & green paint chips, ziploc, die, game-player movers, treasures

You can access the Old World Explorations unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Old-World-Explorations-6022465

Healthy Body! Healthy Brain!: A Nutrition Guide

Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live. ~Jim Rohn

CLMDgrsOct: A Nutrition Guide
CLMDgrsOct: A Nutrition Guide

Week Three of CLAMDigger’s October Literacy Enrichment Collection is a   42-page unit entitled Healthy Body! Healthy Brain! : A Nutrition Guide. It contains the following Projects/Activities:

Oct: Nutrition Food Groups
Oct: Nutrition Food Groups

  • YES, YES, YES, PLEASE! 4 BAGS FULL!

Oct: Nutrition Menus, Servings & Recipes
Oct: Nutrition Menus, Servings & Recipes

  • EVERY DAY I NEED TO EAT…..
  • FOLLOW THE FOOD GROUPS RECIPES

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, pencil, colors, glue-stick, scissors, reference materials, dry erase marker, hole punch, O-ring, food photos/images 

You can access Healthy Body! Healthy Brain! : A Nutrition Guide unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Healthy-Body-Healthy-Brain-A-Nutrition-Guide-6025336

Boos & Hisses ! It’s Halloween!

Boos and Hisses need Chocolate Kisses.~BLB

CLMDgrsOct: Halloween
CLMDgrsOct: Halloween

Week Four of CLAMDigger’s October Literacy Enrichment Collection is a 47-page unit entitled Boos & Hisses! It’s Halloween !  It contains the following Projects/Activities:

Oct: Pumpkins
Oct: Pumpkins

  • HANGING PUMPKIN PATCH

Oct: Halloween Party
Oct: Halloween Party

  • HAPPY HALLOWEEN PARTY!

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, recyclable paper shreds, straw-colored raffia, string, ribbon, yarn, pencil/pen, envelopes/stamps

You can access the Boos & Hisses! It’s Halloween! unit by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/BOOS-and-HISSES-Its-Halloween-6025457

 

You can  access CLAMDiggers’  October Literacy Enrichment units individually or as a 4-Unit bundle for your convenience & savings. Just click on the link below:

 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-October-A-4-Unit-Bundle-6025631

AND….as an added appreciation bonus…..

Here are two PDF freebies to thank you for reading!

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

 

Copyright©2020BizzyLizzyBiz

 

CLAMDiggers: September’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

 WELCOME

TO:

CLAMDiggers: September’s Literacy Enrichment Collection

CLAMDiggers Septcover

Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought. ~A. Szent-Gyorgi

September is such a dynamic month full of celebration and changes. CLAMDIGGERS: September’s Literacy Enrichment Collection includes five of these events:

  • Appreciating our Community of Helpers
  • Preparing for Back to School
  • Celebrating our Grandparents
  • Observing the changes of Autumn
  • Exploring the wonderful world of Apples

The Components of each Unit include:

  • colorful Front & Back covers
  • a Contents list
  • an Introduction Sequence
  • a Master Materials List
  • A thematic Literature List of fiction& nonfiction trade books
  • an overall Lesson Plan
  • Projects/Activities with Construction Instructions written on an Independent Reading Level for Grades 3 ~ 6

Preparation for each of these units can be done  by following this sequence:

  • Read over the Materials & Tools needed for each project in the Master Materials List ~ a component included with each Unit.
  • Gather the Materials & Tools together specific for each Activity ~ card-stock, printing paper, scissors, glue, pencil, colors, etc.
  • Protect your work space with a plastic, washable tablecloth, newspaper, or butcher paper ~ the latter invites doodling & checklists.
  • Read all the steps included in the Sequence part of the Instructions provided for each Project/Activity BEFORE beginning.
  • Keep a copy of these Construction Instructions close by, so you can re-read as you create.
  • Clean up your work space when you have completed what you wanted to do.

Click on this link for more information on CLAMDiggers’ Literacy Enrichment Program:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Read on for more Details on each Unit, but, first, take a look at September’s Poetry Posters to provide each Unit with a little focus.

CLAMDiggers’ September Poetry

CLMDgrsSept~Poetry Posters

During my years in the classroom, I discovered the best way to focus my students’ attention for new content was a choral read of thematic poetry written with colorful images.

September’s six poems are printed onto six thematic 8 ½ x 11″ images you can enlarge if needed. The font sizes are large as well.

You can access this PDF freebie in Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s TPT Shop by clicking on this link:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-September-Poetry-Posters-5901886

A Community of Helpers

Do what you can, with what you have, right where you are. ~ Theodore Roosevelt

CLMDgrsSept ~ A Community of Helpers
CLMDgrsSept ~ A Community of Helpers

The 25-page unit of A Community of Helpers contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • HATS, TOOLS & VEHICLES: A Community Helper’s Helpers Sort Game
  • LABOR DAY CELEBRITIES FILL-IN CARDS
  • INTERVIEW WITH A COMMUNITY HELPER

CLMDgrsSeptCHProductfoto
A Community of Helpers

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, pencil, colors, highlighters, scissors, binding materials, clipboard

You can access the A Community of Helpers unit by clicking on the link below:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/A-Community-of-Helpers-5902019

Back to School

It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers. ~ J. Thurber

CLMDgrsSept~Back to School
CLMDgrsSept~Back to School

The 27-page unit of Back To School contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • MY SCHOOL TOOLS
  • I CAN MAKE MY LUNCH FOR SCHOOL*
  • WHAT’S IN MY BACKPACK
  • I AM READY FOR SCHOOL

*Click on this link in BLB’s Shop for an effective Resource Product to further engage your child’s “Lunch Production”:

It’s Lunch Packin’ Time! (Kids Can Help Pack Their Lunches)

CLMDgrsSeptBTSProductfoto
Back To School

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, pencil, colors, fine-point dry erase marker, scissors, glue stick, tape/stapler, hole punch, O-ring,  binding materials

You can access the Back To School unit by clicking on the link below:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Back-To-School-5902175

 Hooray ! It’s Grandparents’ Day !

Nothing makes a child as smart as having grandparents. ~ F.P. Jones

CLMDgrsSept ~ Grandparents' Day!
CLMDgrsSept ~ Grandparents’ Day!

The 20-page unit of Hooray ! It’s Grandparents’ Day ! contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • MEMORY ACCORDION BOOK
  • HUG CARD
  • LOVE COUPONS BOOKLET

CLMDgrsSeptGrndProductfoto
Hooray! It’s Grandparents’ Day!

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, photos,  construction paper, decorative paper, pencil, colors, ruler, glue stick, glue, tape, scissors, binding materials, ribbon, yarn, filler, raffia, glitz, stickers, embellishments

You can access Hooray! It’s Grandparents’ Day! unit by clicking on the link below:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Hooray-Its-Grandparents-Day-5902416

Autumn Comes

And softly thro’ the altered air hurries a timid leaf. ~ E. Dickinson

CLMDgrsSept ~ Autumn Comes
CLMDgrsSept ~ Autumn Comes

The 27-page unit of Autumn Comes contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • AUTUMN TREES SORT: Trees, Leaves, Seeds / Nuts & Berries
  • AUTUMN LEAF SUN CATCHER
  • NATURE ~ WATCHER’S AUTUMN JOURNAL

CLMDgrsSeptAutProductfoto
Autumn Comes

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, wax paper, clear contact paper, pencil, colors, tacky glue, scissors, rubber bands, binding materials, hole punch, O-ring, string/raffia/yarn

You can access the Autumn Comes unit by clicking on the link below:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Autumn-Comes-5902534

A Bushel of Apples

Johnny Appleseed is my hero ~ BLB

CLMDgrsSept ~ A Bushel of Apples
CLMDgrsSept ~ A Bushel of Apples

The 62-page unit of A Bushel of Apples contains the following Projects/Activities:

  • APPLEPEDIA: A 28-Page Interactive Reference of Apple Information, Organizers, Diagrams & Templates
  • A BASKET OF APPLES
  • TWO DOZEN APPLES BOOK COVER & PAGES INSERT TEMPLATE
  • APPLE EATS

CLMDgrsSeptApplesProductfoto
A Bushel of Apples

General Supply List: card-stock, printing paper, green poster board, pencil, colors, scissors, glue, stapler, rubber band, detachable gummy stick-um,  binding materials,  hole punch, O-ring

You can access A Bushel of Apples unit by clicking on the link below:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/A-Bushel-of-Apples-5902626

 

 

You can  access CLAMDiggers’ September units individually or as a 5-Unit bundle for your convenience & savings. Just click on the link below:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CLAMDiggers-September-Bundle-5903284

 

Here are two PDF freebies to thank you for reading!

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

 


Copyright©2020BizzyLizzyBiz

 

Elevating Your Upper Elementary Child’s Literacy

Elevating Your Upper Elementary Child’s Literacy

If you become a bird and fly away from me,  I will be a tree that you come home to.  ~ from The Runaway Bunnyby Margaret Wise Brown

I’m sure you’re noticing A LOT of changes in your 8~11 year-old child….oops..I mean, young girl/boy…

In my experience with this age group, I discovered these children to be immersed in what I call “The Golden Age of Learning”.

Their Literacy independence is inspiring them to explore a plethora of adventures in an imaginative and creative way. They are able to locate the answers to SO MANY of the questions they continually ask every day. And are SO VERY delighted to be able to do so!

Their Problem Solving skills as well as Task Completion rate are increasing with accuracy….most of the time.

If you haven’t done so already, dear Reader, NOW is the time to UP YOUR GAME for your Upper Elementary child’s Literacy!!!

 Your Upper Elementary Child’s Literacy

 I’m sure you’re SO over hearing “I’m NOT a CHILD anymore!” (note the correction in the Intro….), especially when supervision is a must.

Family Time is becoming…..rare, unless, of course, a few of “my friends” can be included…. Just how many extracurricular activities can one person participate in !?!?

I will tell you, though, those clubs, classes and sports will be a GOOD thing in the coming years….Seriously~keep the meter running.

Oh, and Hobbies & Collections are DEFINITELY a MUST for elevating your Upper Elementary child’s Literacy.   Here are a  few categories:

  • Visual Arts, like painting, sculpting, drawing
  • Crafts (several), like scrap-booking, sewing, cooking,  etc.
  • Performing Arts, like acting, singing, dancing, etc.
  • Musical Instruments, like piano, guitar, trumpet, etc.
  • Sports: Team & Solo, like soccer, baseball, tennis, track, skating, martial arts, etc.
  • Camping Excursions, like scouting, nature hikes, etc.
  • Gardening, like veggies, fruits, herbs, flowers, landscaping, etc.
  • Building Sets, like Legos, Lincoln logs, etc.
  • Model Kits, like ships, airplanes, cars, rockets, etc.
  • Board Games, especially ones that involve mystery & strategy.

Need more ideas ? BLB’s Library has a few Resources for you. Just click on these links:

Hobbies & Collections: Promoting Creativity & Discovery

Creative Arts Book List: 20 Reads to Share with Your Aspiring Artist

This website link lists “101 After School Club Ideas” you can start or suggest to neighbors, friends and/or your child’s school campus:

https://kidactivities.net/clubs-for-school-age-kids-page-1/

Not only is your 8~11 year-old  digging deep into how things work, they are, also,  developing quite a passion for the world beyond their family and surrounding community.

WOW! It’s A Great Big World Out There!

The World Is Ours~Canva Foto
The World Is Ours~Canva Foto

Your child’s interest in reading about exciting adventure, fantasies, and science fiction’s future feeds his/her daydreams. Seeking other places, cultures, and, yes, even worlds influences daily thoughts and ideas.

Having the tools of independent research allows her/him to travel into the far-reaching realms of imagination and creativity.

Here are a few family travel links:

https://www.travelchannel.com/interests/family/photos/bucket-list-trips-for-kids

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/national-geographic-kids-travel/index.html

BLB’s Library has a few Resources, too:

Ten Major Global Celebrations: Traditions, Symbols, Foods & a Book List

FABLES & FOLKTALES from AROUND THE WORLD : K~3 Book Lists & Websites

Don’t be surprised if s/he wants to learn a few more languages along the way….

Language’s listening and talking are taking on a whole new perspective within your 8~11 year-old’s communication skills.

Well, You Won’t Believe What Happened Next….

You may have to “listen in” to conversations between your youngster and her/his friends to hear the substantial amount of new vocabulary being included in the day-to-day dialogues.

And, then, she said...~Canva5
And, then, she said…~Canva5

And they’re not just everyday words either….

S/he is learning how to say exactly what s/he wants/means to say. Communication, especially between peers, is becoming more and more important.

The phone, if you are permitting one, is a new “appendage”…

You’ll, also, notice a keener sense of humor is emerging. There is, also,  an appreciation for solving riddles and a more sophisticated involvement in word play. S/he is very entertained/ing with his/her clever, sly Language skills.

BLB’s Library has a Resource for encouraging your child’s “funny bones”:

NOW THAT’S FUNNY!! Books for Smiling, Giggling & Laughing Out Loud

So, “Where is all this ‘sophistication’ coming from?” you wonder….

Common Core’s Ongoing Language Expectations

Beginning in Third Grade and continuing throughout each grade level,  s/he is expected to “demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking”.

Here’s a general list of the sentence structures s/he is expected to understand, form and utilize with accuracy:

  • Explain what a noun, verb, adjective and adverb is and how they are used in a sentence
  • Form sentences with accurate subject-verb agreement
  •  Can form & speak simple, compound & complex sentences

Specifically, there are expectations for forming & using the different parts of speech as well:

  • regular & irregular plural nouns
  • abstract nouns
  • regular & irregular verbs
  • simple verb tenses
  • comparative & superlative adjectives and adverbs
  • conjunctions

Many of these expectations are modeled and taught during reading instruction. Remember~ your child’s independent level of Reading is not only contributing to the amount s/he chooses to read, but, also, the escalating amount of fiction and nonfiction texts s/he is  experiencing in the classroom.

I Am Reading to Learn

Today a Reader, tomorrow a Leader.~Margaret Fuller

Even though your upper elementary child’s literacy level may enable her/him to read independently, you can continue to ensure her/his comprehension of the text by listening to him/her read aloud and using the following  strategies:

  • Ensure the content is not only appropriate for his/her maturity level, but, also, her/his actual reading level.
  • Encourage a Pre-Read for background knowledge, vocabulary understanding & interest level.
  • Confirm the content of fictional reads has a predictable Beginning, Middle & Ending structure with one Main Problem/Conflict.
  • Make sure the content of nonfictional reads has a predictable & supported Main topic.
  • Periodically, ask questions about the read and/or have her/him retell what was just read.

Reading to Learn-Canva10
Reading to Learn-Canva10

If you want to wait until after s/he has finished reading the chapter or slim book, here are some comprehensions questions to ask:

  • What happened in the Beginning of the story?  (listen for Important Details)
  • Middle? Ending? (again, listen for Important Details to be included during the Retell)
  • Did the story remind you of anything or anyone? (his/her response  should be a “Yes, it made me think about….”)
  • What is the Setting of the story? (characters, place & time)
  • What was the Main Problem, or Conflict in the story & how did it get Solved? (several solution attempts may be made before the actual success of one)

Using these comprehension strategies verbally or in a Reading Response Journal will continue to strengthen your Upper Elementary child’s Literacy.

Is your child a “Good” Reader?

“Good” Reader Strategies

Yes, reading for pleasure is VERY important. However, Your Independent Reader needs to read for accuracy so s/he is learning as s/he reads.

What Good Readers Do

~PREVIEW~

  • Look at the Book Cover & Title
  • Do a Picture Walk & scan some of the Text

~QUESTION~

  • Ask Who did What, When, Where, Why & How.
  • Ask if the text is making sense & supporting the Main Idea.

~PREDICT~

  • Wonder about what you think will happen in the story.
  • Make some predictions and, then, read to find out how accurate your predictions were.

~INFER~

  • Think about  how some of the Important Details are meaningful to the story.
  • Use those Details to help you define the Author’s Purpose for telling the story.

~CONNECT~

  • Relate the story to your thoughts, feelings and what you know.
  • Compare/Contrast the story to other stories you’ve read or heard as well as the world around you.

~SUMMARIZE~

  • Organize/Sequence the Main Details of the story.
  • Draw Conclusions about those Important Details.

~EVALUATE~

  • Once you have finished reading the story, decide what you learned from the text.
  • Then, decide if what you read was important to you & if you enjoyed reading it.

And, what is your Independent Reader reading?

Your Child’s Reading Interest Levels

Reading to Learn~Canva12
Reading to Learn~Canva12

You can continue elevating your upper elementary child’s Literacy by making sure s/he has access to a wide ~ and I mean WIDE~ variety of fiction and nonfiction books, magazines, newspapers & how-to project books.

Books about historic, modern, and futuristic adventures with humor, excitement, mystery and the “unexpected” are definitely reads to pique his/her interests.

Here’s a great link with Book Ideas for your Independent, Upper Elementary Reader:

https://kids.lovetoknow.com/wiki/Kids’_Book_Recommendations:_Ages_8_-_11

BLB’s Library has a Resource for Poetry:

Poetry Collections for K~5

As well as several Resources in BLB’s Library and Shop for Informative Text, which continues to GROW in importance:

Inquiry Investigations: Authors, Books & Websites for Your Child’s Exploration & Discovery

OH YAY! A RESEARCH PROJECT!: Processes, Templates & Resources

THE TINY GIANT: An Interactive Informational Text Features Learning Tool

However, if you have a struggling or non-reader, BLB’s Library has a Resource for you:

Guiding Your NonReader Into The Reader’s World

Perhaps, s/he would rather WRITE than read….

Writing to Read

What you don’t know would make a great book. ~Sydney Smith

If last year was Second Grade, you are aware of the Writing Expectations your child faces. Here’s a reminder link:

Upgrading the FLC with Your Second Grader’s Writing Skills

Now, multiply those Literacy Expectations again and again…..and again.

You may want to have access to Common Core’s Standards for Third Grade Writing and Beyond. Here’s a link:

http://www.corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy/W/3/

Yes, it’s pretty extensive and will continue to increase with difficulty.

Oh……… and , then, there are the Expectations for the Writing Conventions of Standard English :

  • capitalization
  • commas
  • quotation marks
  • possessives
  • spelling : patterns, prefixes & suffixes

My Teachers Pay Teachers Shop has a Resource for Grammar Usage:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Please-Practice-Good-Grammar–4711045

Make glossaries, dictionaries, and other reference word helpers part of the easy-to-access library. They are definite tools for:

  •  unknown words’ spelling and multiple-meanings
  • root words
  • how prefixes & suffixes affect root words
  • figurative language
  • literal & non-literal words/phrases in context
  • abstract words

Fortunately, if those fine motor skills were hampering your child’s writing progress, the coordination of hand & fingers are improving ~ a plus to the actual physicality of writing.

Otherwise, if writing is a struggle ~ and it is for many of us ~read on for a few helpful suggestions.

ARGH!!! Writing !!!!

ARGH! Writing!~Alexandra Koch
ARGH! Writing!~Alexandra Koch

Loves to read, but Hates to Write!!!! BLB’s Library has a few Resources for you:

Reading About Writing: 15 Books to Encourage Your Young Author’s Writing Skills

and for some inspiration:

More Wonderful Wordless Picture Books for Readers, Ages 5~8

The BEST and most effective  suggestion I have for your I HATE TO WRITE writer is Interactive Writing between you and your child. Select a journal, have your writer decorate it, and begin:

INTERACTIVE Journal Prompts

BTW…  a few ideas and suggestions for making your home and your Upper Elementary child’s Literacy Learning Space an inviting environment.

Ready, Set….Learn!

Ready, Set, Learn!~KitzD66
Ready, Set, Learn!~KitzD66

Here are a few Resources & checklists for helping you make your home a Learning & Teaching ~Friendly environment:

A Materials & Activities List for the Home~Learning Experience

Questions for Brain Food Menu

 YOUR CHILD IS A BRAINIAC ! A Parent Guide for Building Thinking Skills

and last, but not least……

Your Homework Help HOTLINE : Parent Involvement Strategies

I hope this Post has some ideas and suggestions you can use in your Family Literacy Circle regardless of the Independence of your Learner.

Now…for the 52-week, cross-curricular, interactive, hands-on, enrichment program I promised to deliver for your 8~11 year-old Learners. Click on the link below for CLAMDiggers:

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

Copyright©2020BizzyLizzyBiz

CLAMDiggers: An Enrichment Program for Upper Elementary Learners

This is the CLAMDiggers’ Enrichment Program Overview!

CLAMDiggers Overview

A child can teach an adult three things: to be happy for no reason, to always be busy with something, and to know how to demand with all his/her might that which s/he desires. ~Paulo Coelho

I am very excited to share CLAMDiggers: a 52~week, cross-curricular, enrichment, and  interactive program I developed from my teaching and learning experiences with children, ages 8~11 years-old.

They always encouraged and inspired hands-on activities with readily available materials. Producing projects, such as games, books, sculptures, puppets, skits, paintings, food, keepsakes, etc. enhanced not only the learning process propelled by children’s love of an engaging read, but also, stimulated their creative skills in critical thinking, problem solving, visual & spatial reasoning, etc.

In the Beginning…

In the Classroom-Ludi
In the Classroom-Ludi

CLAMDiggers was originally developed as a classroom enrichment program and/or an after-school activity club for children, ages 8-11, integrating fiction and nonfiction literature with craft-making, role-play and artistic expression.

However, given the changing landscape of education, I tweaked and edited each Unit’s activities to make them more tech-friendly and accessible. Their priority remains as an interactive, hands-on learning experience.

Initially formatted for a classroom teacher, I re-worded Activity Directions into an Upper Elementary Independent Reading Level. The Lesson Plan is written as a guide for teaching reading comprehension within the thematic trade book selection list.

 An Educational Overview

Building Cognitive Skills with CLAMDiggers-Hires
Building Cognitive Skills with CLAMDiggers-Hires

CLAMDiggers is designed to build Cognitive Skills through Critical Thinking.

While promoting the ongoing development of a child’s eagerness to explore the accomplishments of creative production through manipulative experiences, CLAMdiggers:

  • cultivates an appreciation for appropriate children’s literature using a thematic approach
  • addresses cross-curriculum objectives throughout each lesson for analysis, synthesis and evaluation
  • inspires creative production using a variety of art media
  • provides opportunities for extension and enrichment within the framework of each session
  • increases an understanding of the global community on both physical and cultural levels

The impact of CLAMDiggers is immediate and expansive, as each child internalizes the confidence to express imaginative responses.

CLAMDiggers’ Format

CLAMDiggers' Format-Canva
CLAMDiggers’ Format-Canva

This labor of love of mine is assembled into seasonal / monthly / weekly collections (Summer, too) and formatted to correspond with educational guidelines. Each session includes:

 An  Introduction with an Instructional Sequence

The Unit’s Introductory Overview includes a suggested Instructional Sequence for integrating the fiction and nonfiction, Thematic Literature, grade-level  trade books listed  with the Haptic Activities included.

Master Materials & Literature Books Lists

The Unit’s Master Materials List is a complete inventory of each Activity’s necessary supplies for completion. Substitution ideas are, also, included. The Unit’s Thematic Literature List is compiled of titles I successfully used in the classroom. Children predictably and positively responded to these 10-12  reads. There are spaces for you to lists your choices as well.

A Lesson Plan with Curriculum Objectives

Each Lesson Plan generally focuses on  ideas for utilizing a variety of Comprehension Elements within the Literature reads. It, also, provides the Objectives the specific session will address. These Curriculum guidelines are designated in abbreviations: LA (Language Arts), MTH (Math), SS (Social Studies), SC (Science), HLTH (Health), A (Art), M (Music) & PE (Physical Education). The Activities/Projects are listed as well.

Activities/Projects with Directions, Illustrations, Templates & Extensions

Directions for the Activity or Project have been sequentially tested for understanding. I know how LITERAL  children can be, especially with Hands-On tasks. Some illustrations and templates may be included for, hopefully, easier modelling and tracer accessibility. Extension ideas at the conclusion of each Activity/Project will give you and your child more possibilities for enrichment.

Seasonal & Monthly Studies

CLAMDiggers' Invitation for Study--Atlantamomoffive
CLAMDiggers’ Invitation for Study-Atlantamomoffive

Each Seasonal collection of Literature Study & Activity/Project options includes opportunities to:

  • celebrate Nature’s seasonal changes
  • investigate weather patterns
  • observe the sky’s phenomena
  • explore a variety of animals
  • discover plant-life

Monthly Units have a collection of mini- poetry posters to introduce a focus on the content of the different lessons within each weekly session. They may include connections to:

  • celebrate holidays & special occasions
  • examine historical events
  • research social environments
  • create plays & games
  • apply critical thinking skills for problem solving
  • use imagination for expression

Here’s Condensed Contents List of the CLAMDiggers’ Seasonal & Monthly Main Ideas:

JANUARY: Nature in Winter/Snow/Civil Rights/Hibernation

FEBRUARY: Asian New Year/Valentines/Friendship/US Presidents

MARCH: Dr Seuss & Imagination/Windy Weather/A Wee Bit O’ Green/Spring Into Spring/Humor

 APRIL: Fairy Tales/Clouds & Rain/Earth Day Everyday/Arbor Day: A Celebration of Trees

 MAY: Mothers’ Day/Baby Animals/Bicycles & Safety/Neighbors in the Neighborhood/Let’s Have a Picnic 

JUNE: The Sun/Fathers’ Day/Backyard Summer Fun/Going on Vacation

JULY: Independence Day/Summer Nights: Moon & Stars/Tall Tales & Legends/Fun in the Water: Oceans, Lakes & Rivers 

AUGUST: Spotlight/Insects/I’m Bored ! Daydreams & Mysteries/ Inventions: Machines & Robotics

 SEPTEMBER: A Community of Helpers/Back to School/ Grandparents/Autumn Comes/A Bushel Of Apples 

OCTOBER: We Love Pets !/Old World Explorations/Nutrition Guide/ Boos & Hisses ! It’s Halloween! 

NOVEMBER: Autumn Fantasy/Then & Now/Native Americans/ Giving Thanks 

DECEMBER: An Early American Christmas/Oh! Christmas Tree!/ Santa & His Reindeer/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa/New Year

Weekly Unit Components

Weekly Literature-Canva
Weekly Literature-Canva

Each weekly unit, or session includes the following components:

  • front & back covers
  • a contents list
  • introductory sequence overview
  • master materials activities list
  • thematic literature book list
  • lesson plan
  • one-four activities with sequential instructions & extension ideas

Crafts, Literature & More

Crafts, Literature & More-Hermann
Crafts, Literature & More-Hermann

You can utilize CLAMDiggers’ enrichment program in a variety of ways:

  • a Home-School enrichment program
  • an hour after-school club session introduced with a teacher-read trade book and guided activity
  • a several hours mini “workshop” with your child or several children partner-reading several trade books, electing a teacher-read book and producing activity (ies)
  • an on-going classroom, thematic DEAR with an independent and/or partner-student read, promoting a book-share, a teacher-read encouraging comprehension and culminating in project production with usage for evaluation
  • center-based tasks to include student-generated comprehension assessments in conjunction with activity production
  • cooperative group preparation of book and project presentation
  • multi-grade level student partnerships for book-shares and activity production
  • extra-credit or homework assignments to encourage parental involvement

Laminating a pocketed folder with brads or providing a notebook with dividers will help your child or children keep lessons and materials organized. A permanent black marker will enable them to title the cover.   

Book Reviews & Comprehension activities with Project Directions can be part of the folder’s contents.

Encourage your students to anecdote the Directions with questions & thoughts.  It will help generate Critical Thinking and, hopefully, facilitate Brainstorming and Creativity for Extension Activities .

CLAMDiggers’ Access

Whether selecting a few weekly units individually and/or a monthly bundle (which will include a 30-page booklet of Graphic Organizers for Reading Comprehension, Brainstorming & Writing), CLAMDiggers’ enrichment program for Upper Elementary Learners will be available ~hopefully~ for purchase on Mz. Bizzy Lizzy Biz’s Teachers Pay Teachers Shop several weeks before the Month’s due date. September’s Monthly/Weekly Units are first. Access to the Monthly Poetry Posters will be in the Shop as well. Here’s the link to my Shop:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Mz-Bizzy-Lizzy-Biz

A Few CLAMDiggers’ Thank You Freebies

I hope this literature-based, Literacy enrichment program has caught your interest. Here are a few 10-page Freebies I created to show my appreciation. Just click on the links to open these PDFs:

A Home Reading and Writing Guide

Let Me Show You What I Learned-AltAssess

As a parent-teacher and/or classroom teacher of children, ages 8-11, I know you and yours will find these Units engaging and fun. I would love to hear from you.

Questions? Concerns? Shares?

Just fill in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

Copyright©2020BizzyLizzyBiz

P.S.  HAPPY CLAMDIGGING!!!!

 

 

 

Nurturing the Family Literacy Circle with Your Infant (7-12 Months)

The only time I ever felt qualified to be a parent was before I had kids.  ~ Father in comic strip “Baby Blues”

Infancy, the first year of a child’s life, comes from the Latin for “without Nurturing the Family Literacy Circle with Your Infant (7-12 mos.)words.” Watching your infant’s glee when s/he begins to independently roll over is one of many physical feats s/he is working hard to master. Pulling up, sitting alone, and crawling opens your baby’s world in a new way.

Now, learning to walk is what all these efforts  your infant is guiding him/her self towards. How your baby achieves these physical goals can give you some understanding of her/his personality.

Rahima Dancy, who authored You Are Your Child’s First Teacher offers some insightful observations.

Does your baby:

  • Constantly “work” at moving his/her body along OR is s/he content to stay in a seated position?
  • Seem to understand falling is part of the process & “forge” ahead OR become discouraged & seem hesitant to keep trying?
  • Use her/his arms & hands to reach for things OR just pick up things close by?
  • Howl & continue with his/her efforts OR stop & whine?

Praising and encouraging your striving infant will definitely help, but remember- it is her/his body that s/he needs to conquer. Sooner or later, the will to JUST DO IT overcomes the frustration and “growing pains.” Your infant’s growing brain is an important part of this process.

Our Brain

The 2-Sided Brain - Seanbatty
The 2-Sided Brain – Seanbatty

Curious about what the brain does? I found an interesting brain image listing some of the separate brain functions scientists have discovered.  The “corpus callosum”, the Latin word for the brain, is divided into 2 parts – the right side & the left side.

The Right side of the brain is labeled the Creative and controls:

  • the left side of the body
  • gross motor skills (large body movements)
  • visualization: the big picture, images & symbols 
  •  long term & visual memory
  •  “outside of the box”  & spontaneous thinking
  • feelings & encoding (creating secretive messages)

The Left side of the brain is labeled the Logical and controls:

  • the right side of the body
  • fine motor skills (hand tool control)
  • language: letters, numbers,  grammar, punctuation, detail
  • short term & hearing memory
  • rules, patterns & planned thinking
  • analysis & decoding ( solving secretive messages)

Which brain-side rules you? Some people’s brain-sides have equal control or an interweaving of skills from both sides. For example, I love language , but numbers-not so much.

Gifts of the Brain

 In Dr. John Medina’s book Brain Rules for Baby , he shares 5 of the intellectual gifts with their characteristics your baby has nestled within her/his brain:

The Visionary: Desire to Explore

  • loves & needs to experiment, test & “tinker”
  • asks extraordinary questions about ordinary things
  • sees connections between unrelated ideas, problems or questions
  • asks “what if” “why not” “how come you’re doing it this way”
  • does not value “right” answers over challenging questions

The Planner: Self-Control

  • loves to plans & problem-solve
  • has the ability to shut out distracting thoughts
  • sets goals with the foresight to complete them

The Creative: Power to Invent

  •  copes with puzzling situations
  • sees new relationships between “old” things
  • thinks up ideas & things not currently existing
  • engages in healthy “risk-taking”
  • Stirs positive and/or negative emotions in others

The Orator: Influence of Language

  • communicates using a variety of vocabulary & sounds
  • understands the social meanings of words
  • born with the ability to learn & speak any language

The Mime: Silent Messages

  • interprets nonverbal communication
  • uses facial expressions to communicate
  • uses body gestures to communicate

Some brain gifts are stronger than others in each person. Sometimes a little “exercise” will encourage and strengthen quieter gifts. Which ones do you feel particularly “gifted” with  in your life? How will you nurture these gifts in your infant?

Nurturing Your Infant’s Brain Growth & Development

Baby in Thought-Amy Elizabeth Quinn
Baby in Thought-Amy Elizabeth Quinn

Remember your infant will grow & develop in her/his own way at his/her own pace. S/he will progress in a sequential, or orderly, way & build on the skills s/he has already learned.

Depending on your baby’s personality, s/he may focus on only one task/goal at a time. So, if s/he is working hard on walking, language may be slower. Once the walking goal is met, you may hear an increase in babblese.

My son walked very early ( at 8 months) and didn’t start speaking until much later. He was enamored with his physical world and how he was able to “grasp”  it!

Dr. Margot Sunderland, a child psychotherapist & author of The Science of Parenting,  wrote ” your baby’s frontal lobes are in front of her/his brain. Their many important functions give us the following abilities:

  • to learn
  • to pay attention
  • to concentrate
  • to plan & problem-solve
  • to manage stress
  • to control impulses

Those frontal lobes need a lot of stimulation from relationship interaction to increase social, emotional & intellectual growth & development”.

Dr. Sunderland goes on to offer several strategies & techniques for nurturing the growth & development of your infant’s brain:

  • talk to you infant ALOT, using “normal” , yet simple language
  • always make eye contact & smile
  • use words with body gestures for everyday language: eat, drink, I love  you, hug, sad, happy, hurt, mad, scared

Talk to your infant during the day when s/he is with you. Pretend you are his/her Tour Guide to a new world. S/he is ready to learn & be a part of your world because you are the most important part of his/her world.

Brain Boosters for Your Infant

Baby Loves to Eat -Public Domain Pics
Baby Loves to Eat -Public Domain Pics

Talking & playing with your infant are necessary to help his/her brain grow & develop. Child research supports this interaction as a major key to a healthy & responsive intellect.

Words of Caution: Dr. John Medina listed a few major Early Learning Stunters in his book, Brain Rules for Baby:

  • Keep the TV, video games & computer off
  • Keep your baby physically active
  • Keep giving your baby lots of face-to-face interaction

In July 2016 Mom of 11 Kids posted an infographic: “Seven Ways to Boost Baby Brain Development”. They are simple, daily activities you will do without much “to-do”: 

      • Play peek-a-boo & other hiding games
      • Play patty-cake & other hand games
      • Read together every day
      • Play with toys that teach, like blocks
      • Get messy with water, mud, puddles
      • Sing songs & verses together with repetition, rhythm & rhyme
      • Teach as you eat different foods – taste, touch, smell, colors, shapes, cold, sweet

These brain boosters build vocabulary as well as oral language. Both are strong literacy elements. Don’t forget to ask questions. You might get your first nod and/or head-shake.

How To Use Oral Language for Your Infant’s Literacy Growth

I Wonder How These Taste-PublicDomain Pics
I Wonder How These Taste – PublicDomain Pics

Continuing with Dr. Sunderland’s  techniques for brain growth, she has specific strategies for parents to use when communicating with their child(ren):

  • Watch, wait & listen after giving your infant a toy
  • Copy & comment on her/his responses
  • Use comments & choices instead of commands
  • Use lots of facial expressions & touch

Go Out into Nature Everyday for At Least  20 Minutes

  • It will calm your baby
  • It positively impacts your infant’s brain wave patterns
  • It lowers the frequency of stress
  • The variety of textures, sights, sounds & smells are wonderful for your baby’s senses. Tasting can be , well you know……

My children ALWAYS loved being outdoors, regardless of the weather. When my son was an infant, I would settle him under the trees while I hung up his daily dozen diapers. His babblese was joyful and expressive!

Yes! Your Infant Is Talking to You (in Babblese)

The Language of Babblese-EME
The Language of Babblese-EME

Responding to infant’s language is one of the most important things people can do to encourage & increase more talk. Having conversations with your infant is a major pathway to literacy.

Oral language has 2 parts: Expressive Language – actual speech and Receptive Language – hearing & understanding what you hear. Between the ages of 9 and 12 months, you may see & hear a steady increase in both what your infant is saying and understanding.

Remember each child learns in her/his own way. Some are listeners,  some are talkers; some have a lot to say, some have a few special words; some love to talk, some not so much. Know any grown-ups like that?!

FYI-here’s a chart (love making these!) with some Expressive & Receptive Language milestones your infant may have met:

Infant Oral Language Milestones (7 - 12 Months)

AGE IN MONTHSEXPRESSIVE LANGUAGE
( SPEECH)
RECEPTIVE LANGUAGE
(HEAR &UNDERSTAND)
By 9 months*Imitates sounds
*4+ sounds in babblese
*Takes turns in vocalizations
*Begins using hands to communicate wants/needs (reaches to be picked up)
*Consistently responds to own name
*Looks at familiar objects & people when named
*Follows some routine directions when paired with gestures
*Not fearful of everyday sounds
By 12 months*Says 1 or 2 words
*Begins speech sounds
*Babblese has "strings"of speech
*May nod "yes"
*May shake head "no"
*Babblese has the sounds & rhythms of speech
*Understands up to 50 common words-baby, bottle
*Responds to simple directions- "come here"
*Follows your gaze & points
*Notices when hurt

If you and your loved ones are looking into your infants eyes and talking to her/him every day,  oral language will continue to grow. Playing with your infant is a great time to have conversations. Encourage loved ones to participate daily.

Literacy Needs Playtime

Wanna Play with Me? -Public Domain Pics
Wanna Play with Me? -Public Domain Pics

Your infant is probably no longer in an Unoccupied Stage of play (Kalokyri’s “Facts About the Importance of Play”), but comfortably immersed in the Solitary & Constructive Stages of play.

Having mastered some movement goals-sitting up, pulling up, crawling- means your Infant is ready to discover his/her world. Make sure your home is a safe place for your crawler (and those babies can pick up some speed!) to explore. Get low on your hands & knees (with padding, of course) for a dust bunny view (I mean…..).

Try not to “teach” too much, but help her/him find out what’s making the world around him/her come into his/her experience. Again, instead of you all the time,  have older siblings and/or loved ones attend to your infant’s fussiness or frustration when it happens – and it will! Taking your grumpy cub outside is usually a great soother and/or distraction.

When playing with your infant, remember to See & Play, Hear & Play, Touch & Play, and Grab & Play. Involving as many of the 5 senses as you can during playtime encourages literacy through language, interaction and experience. Building on the skills your baby knows will give her/him confidence to try new activities and make the physical world more familiar and exciting.

The Game Play of Literacy

Interactive games are your infants (and most children’s) favorite ways to play. They promote language, discovery, surprise, fun & laughter. Games using hands and feet bring giggles. Hiding games bring loud laughter (and hiccups). Make sure to maintain eye contact. Use rhyming & repetitive language.

Interactive Game Ideas

  • clapping to rhymes & songs
  • face-to-face play
  • lap movement
  • bathtime bubbles
  • song & dance

The Power of Music

During your pregnancy and your newborn’s first 6 months of life, I’m sure you used the power of music to soothe, calm & entertain the 2 of you. Lullabies, classical music, new age, jazz, and, even some soft rock were/are great ways to communicate with each other.

Now, you may notice a little rhythmic wiggling when certain songs & music is played. Using music as a fun way to “teach & play” with your infant. Try some of these musical activities:

  • Sing songs with rhymes, like “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” in the tub.
  • Sing songs with body play, “Itsy Bitsy Spider”.
  • Sing songs using your infant’s name while doing activities together, like “This is the way we…”.
  • Use toys as instruments while you sing songs, like “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star & Mary (or baby’s name) Had A Little Lamb”.
  • Sing or hum (make up some words) while you dance with your baby.

You can, also, sing while creating interactive games with toys. It is lots of fun! Listen to how siblings & other loved ones talk, sing and play with the “new baby bird in the nest”.

Games with Toys as a Power Strategy for Literacy

A few words about toy selection- Gender Stereotype Freedom. Make sure all kinds of toys are available for your baby. Girls need to know about cars & trucks -how else will they learn to drive & maintain them. Boys need to know about dolls -how else will they learn to care & nurture their own children. Believe it or not, this can be a literacy opportunity-stretching both sides of the brain.

In my Home-Care & Day-School for children (yes, it’s going to be more than a few words-but this is true-life data), my toddler girls loved playing with cars, trucks, blocks. Think engineers, architects & designers. My toddler boys loved playing with stuffed animals, kitchen sets, dollhouses. Think veterinarians, chefs & designers. Not to mention what great partners they will be in a marriage. I’m just saying……

Does your infant have TOO MANY TOYS? Think your infant is feeling overwhelmed and/or overstimulated to the point of boredom?????

Try putting away some of the toys. Hold several choices in your hands to see which ones s/he reaches for. After a few weeks, bring out the “new” toys and see if s/he has an interest in them.

Babies usually enjoy playing with toys that:

  • Have different textures
  • Are very bright & colorful
  • Are musical
  • Make noises
  • Have mirrors
  • Have knobs, pushers, etc (reaction toys)
  • Can be banged on to make music
  • Can be easily grasped
  • Can be chewed on

Check out the Six Games with Toys activity list with directions I created for some play ideas:

 https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/blb-resource-library/infant-literacy-toy-games/

Don’t be too surprised if that $100 toy you absolutely had to have because you knew it would be your baby’s favorite toy is ignored for the box it came in. Your home is packed with “toys” your baby will love and play with all the time.

Your Home Is A Toy Land

Although there  was a playroom in my Home-Care/Day-School, the toys were always dragged out of the playroom and into the living room and/or dining room.

Couches & chairs became stages, platforms, building sites & race tracks. The kitchen table – the same- with additional puzzles, papers, play-doh, & crayons.

So, I  tucked toy bins in these areas for clean-up time. Those filled carriers, then, were stacked in the playroom at the end of each day.

Scarves, towels, socks, & pieces of colorful, textured fabrics become capes, hats, doll blankets, animal tents, meadows, ponds, puppets, beds, & rooftops-once they pass the taste test, of course.

Putting on & taking off hats, socks & shoes can entertain your older infant for quite a few minutes-over & over & over again. Day after day after day….

A favorite Toy Land spot-the kitchen!

Baby’s Kitchen Play Land

Keep in mind – play is your baby’s work. Where ever you are, s/he wants to be near. My baby’s food was handmade as well as our daily bread (I love to cook!). I spent quite a few hours a day in the kitchen. I discovered, as did my baby, the kitchen is a full of toys.

When my son began his search-and-see, I made sure the bottom kitchen cabinet had large bright plastic & wooden spoons, measuring cups, a colander, some pots & pans with their lids, plastic mixing bowls,  & some storage containers with lids. His clang- bang music was quite a dinner bell!

Sturdy empty boxes in a variety of sizes , especially those large, appliance ones, are worth the trees that donated their lives to make them. Be ready to cut out some windows & doors. Creativity & exploration will last longer than the boxes will!

Sounds like lots of messes every day, you say?!? 

Creativity + Discovery =  A Learning  Mess For Literacy

The Bliss of A Mess-Lubomirkin
The Bliss of A Mess-Lubomirkin

Personally, I would be considered a Master Messer. Not in a destructive way, but messes are part of the “creative & productive process.”  Making a mess and, then, cleaning or putting things away teaches cause & effect, freedom of expression, etc. The way I see it-” making a mess is part of success!” For me & children, anyway…..

When children are busy having fun & learning – be ready & hope for- a mess. Listen & participate in the language of exploration, sequence, cause & effect, details, etc. All the “story” elements are present. The Story of Discovery!

Of course, some are bigger than others…..

Try these messes on for size:

  • Water play in the tub: splash, squirt, pour, fill, sink, float, full, empty & bubbles (say the words to match the action)
  • Water play in the sink (see above)
  • Water play outside in the pool, water bucket, wagon, wash tub
  • Fill &Dump with water, toys, sand, dirt, mud (stay very close)
  • Finger-painting- find an edible recipe, like one made with cornstarch
  • Scribble with large pieces of paper & fat crayons (talk about color, shapes & pictures/stories)
  • Paint with a large paintbrush & colored water

BTW-Those plastic kitchen utensils make great water toys , sand, mud & dirt toys, too. A word of caution– use big rocks, pebbles are  too temptingly taste-worthy!

Sing a “Clean -Up” song. Wipe your baby down & maybe change clothes. Have a drink & a snack. Settle in for Book Time!

 Book Time & Infant Literacy

Children are made readers on the laps of their parents. ~ Emily Buchwald

“Brain Wonders” is a joint project by Boston University Medical Center, Erikson Institute & Zero To Three (see link).  

https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/1056-beginnings-of-literacy

Their 2003 study on Early Literacy supports, not only the “new   understanding of early literacy development”, but also, “its critical influence in shaping brain development.”

The research  states:

  • Language, reading & writing (early scribbling in infants) develop at the same time , making them interconnected.
  • This development process that begins in the first 3 years of life is continuous.
  • Real life settings through positive interactions with people, books, stories, paper & crayons are important factors in literacy skills development.

Please note: early literacy does NOT mean early reading. Trying to teach infants & toddlers to read before they are developmentally ready can cause more harm than good. The frustrations and failures will have a negative impact on their motivation to read.

How To Create Your Infant’s Love of Books & Stories

InfantLiteracy-Public DomainPics
InfantLiteracy-Public DomainPics

Believe it or not, chewing on a book page is part of early literacy behaviors. So, plastic, vinyl, cloth & sturdy board books need to be part of your infant’s hands, feet & mouth-on library.

Place them in the crib, playpen (if you use one), tub, diaper bag & a floor bin/basket for ready-access. Don’t forget to put a few books in the kitchen play-cabinet- fruits & veggies, breads & milk, pasta shapes & kitchen tools.

Include books with bright colored real-life images of everyday, familiar objects & toys, shapes, colors, animals, other babies’ faces & faces of loved ones, including pets.

Handmade books will become well-loved. Get your camera ready for “Baby Book Time Publication”. Click & slip photos into a mini-foto book with plastic sleeves. Here are some Book Titles:

  • My Family At Home
  • Other Family & Friends
  • My Pets
  • My Toys
  • In My Bedroom
  • In the Kitchen
  • Play Time Outside

If your infant has become a curious crawler, make sure you have a basket of books as part of his/her path. Cloth, plastic & sturdy board books will suit your infant’s “taste” at this time.

How To Read Wordless Books

 Bright, bold colored picture books without words are a wonderful beginning into her/his discovery of the book world. You & loved ones can make the “stories” personal & suitable for your young learner.

Whether you’re inventing a story to go with the pictures or just talking about the actual pictures, think about using these few tips:

  • Make sure there are no more than 3 images per page
  • Trace the images with your finger and, then, your baby’s finger
  • It’s okay to skip pages if your baby’s interest seems to lag
  • Talk about the images using short, simple sentences
  • Try to use rhyming words: cat, hat, mat, bat
  • Sing the book

Take A Minute to Read-NickelBabe
Take A Minute to Read-NickelBabe

 

Wordless picture books will inspire a story for many years into your child’s life, even after s/he becomes a reader of words. It will amaze you how many different stories can be told about the same pictures as s/he gets older. And the story being told can depend upon who & when it’s being told. If only stuffed animals could talk…….

Picture books without words encourage many literacy development skills, while answering the following questions:

  •  What is happening in this picture? comprehension/understanding
  • Why is this picture important to the story? vocabulary, oral language
  • What makes you think this picture is important? inference. drawing conclusions
  • What do you think will happen next? prediction

So, What Else Is New?-Yusuhyun
So, What Else Is New?-Yusuhyun

Well if you’ve made it to the end of this post-

Thank You so much for reading!

I really enjoyed researching, writing & reminiscing! Please share your comments with me by filling in the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing. I look forward to hearing from you!

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Copyright©2017BizzyLizzyBiz

P.S. Click on the link below for access to Your Baby’s First 12 Months of Growth & Development in the BLB Resource Library.

 https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/blb-resource-library/babys-first-12-months-growth-development/

 

 

 

Managing the Family Literacy Circle with Your Toddler (24-36 Months)

Characters  and moral development, as well as spiritual reflection and moments of joy, are crucial for fully developing the nature of each child. ~ Michael Gurian PhD Nurture the Nature

 And how is your little angel doing? Flying, Landing? Managing the Family Literacy Circle with Your Toddler

Climbing up & down? Up & down? Stairs? Furniture? You? Trees are next (OMG)!!!!

Doesn’t need or want help walking (holding your hand ANYWHERE can be a struggle)? Running, and, oh, yes, the newest favorite- JUMPING, JUMPING, JUMPING ?!?

S/he has worked very hard during the last year or so to master upright movement (I DO IT!!!- is a favorite phrase now-more on that later).

Balance & coordination are improving, so prepare for some physical risk-taking.  Think tricycles ( we called them low-riders), lots of throwing (FORE!!!  INCOMING!!!!), and galloping (yes, like a herd of wild horses). With sound effects….

So ~ have you re-baby-proofed your home? S/he is a lot taller and more-much more-mobile now. Still loving to get into EVERYTHING!!! Cabinets, drawers, hampers, refrigerator doors, and, yes, toilets. Moving a chair to reach a door knob and/or latch can be expected in the near future. So, time to upgrade those knobs, handles & latches.

“No, no, no!” is pretty much meaningless. Exploration is being driven by confident mobility and boundless curiosity. YES !!!! It’s a good thing ~ a GREAT thing, actually.

Understanding Your Toddler’s Brain

Ready or Not !-Kazuend/toddler
Ready or Not !-Kazuend

If you’re like me, you’re thinking the brain’s the brain. I, however, did a little research to help me (and you) understand our most powerful & mysterious “organ”.

Dr. Bruce D. Perry, an American psychiatrist with a PhD in Behavioral Sciences, has written several books on children in crisis. Here’s what he taught me, thanks to the article – “Using Play to Build the Brain” @ gooeybrains.com.

Our brains grow from conception  in a sequence/order,  beginning with the most basic areas first. Then, the other more complex areas start to develop. Each area (there are 4 broad brain areas) needs to grow in a healthy, functioning way before we can move on and focus on building the next area- in order. 

Ready to Know More?

  • The most basic building block in the brain is the brain stem, which keeps the body functioning-heart rate, temperature, sleep & fear states, etc. It develops in us as infants during 0-9 months of age.
  • Between 6 until 24 months of age, the midbrain is developing. This area helps to build  movement, or motor skills- both gross & fine. Our 5 senses are, also, combining and fine-tuning at this time within our bodies.
  • The limbic area is all about emotions. We can gain the skills of tolerance, empathy, belonging & social relationships during the ages of 12 to 24 months.
  • The most complex area of the brain is the cortical area. Developing between the ages of 3 until 6 years of age, this part of the brain controls concrete (factual) and abstract (creative) thought. Language skills, imagination, morality & respect are gains at this time of growth.

Since the brain grows & develops each of these sections in order, don’t ask  or expect your toddler to do something s/he is not ready to do. S/he is a “work-in-progress”. Remember each child develops in his/her own time/rate.

Keep reading for a few tips you don’t have to be a brain specialist to use.

 Encouraging  Your Toddler  Brain’s Growth & Development

Toddler's World of Wonder-Jennifer Wai Ting Tan
World of Wonder-Jennifer Wai Ting Tan

Did you know by the age of 3, your child’s brain is 80% as big as an adult’s brain?

Keep in mind your toddler continues to experience the world through all 5 of her/his senses. You & loved ones can encourage your toddler brain’s healthy growth & development everyday with a few things you are probably already doing. Dr. Gurian, a brain scientist, family therapist & author of Nurture the Nature, provides these guidelines for parents:

  • Nutrition: eating right means avoid junk food or sugary snacks & try not to have long lag times between meals
  • Rest: increasing sleep might help ease cranky/whiny behaviors
  • Discovery: exploring nature is an easy way to use all 5 senses
  • Readiness: teaching every “little” thing is “big” to your toddler, so not too much at once and only when s/he is developmentally ready
  • Independence: hovering  will interfere with your child’s need to develop, play & learn as an individual
  • Behaviors: providing lessons in “right & wrong” whenever you can

Now, just a few thoughts about video screens : television, computer, tablet, game console & phone……

Your Toddler’s Brain & Screen Time

More & more early child development studies are supporting the negative effects of too much screen time. Dr. Gurian and other developmental brain specialists shared some of the recent findings:

  • It can affect: behaviors, sleep, future obesity & mood development.
  • It can increase behavior problems: even after 1 hour of educational programs-is your child more aggressive, more passive and/or more lethargic?
  • It can translate into lower reading & short term  memory scores.

When I had my Home School, the TV was never on until the end of the day for PBS’ Reading Rainbow, Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood & Sesame Street. The children, ages 1-5, wandered in & out of the room during Reading Rainbow & Sesame Street, watching for 2-3 minutes at a time. Mr. Rogers, however, held their attention for much longer periods of time. Often, they responded to his soft, calm questions earnestly, sitting very still and focused……

As my child grew up, television privileges were a sure-fire way to achieve behavior adjustments. It usually took about a week or so (withdrawal period-seriously) before my lovable, communicative & creative son returned.

Environment Matters in Brain Growth & Development

Once your Toddler has mastered many mobility skills (first building block), s/he will continue to use that movement & begin working/playing on the next building blocks. Early childhood authorities generally agree your young one is working on these  4 areas of growth & development at the same time:                                                                                                                             

Toddler Learning-Bessi
I Am Learning-Bessi

  • Physical-gross motor skills (the big muscles of crawling, walking, climbing, etc) & fine motor skills (hand-eye coordination of holding, coloring, cutting, throwing, catching, etc)

  • Language & Speech-understanding & expressing thought (vocabulary, sentence structure, etc)
  • Social/Emotional- understanding self & others (playing, sharing, feelings, etc)
  • Self-Help/Adaptive-being independent (dressing, feeding, etc)

Cognitive, or reasoning, develops later, usually beginning around 3 years old.So, now, you (and I) understand why our toddlers (and we) suffered misunderstandings…..

According to Dr. Margot Sunderland, a child psychotherapist with more than 30 years of experience working with families, creating an engaging environment for your growing child needs to involve all 5 of the senses, movement, social interaction & thought-at the same time. The benefits to your child’s brain health are:

  • lower levels of stress chemicals
  • decreased anxiety in an anxious child
  • new brain cell growth

“What I’m Trying So Hard To Say!!!”

If I accept the sunshine & warmth, then, I must also accept the thunder & lightning. ~ Kahlil Gibran

One minute your dimpled darling is full of giggles, hugs & kisses and within seconds (it seems), your red-faced toddler is crying, yelling & (yikes!) biting with an almost-full set of teeth.  Try to remain calm because your puzzled frustration is small (maybe) compared to the large tantrum going on now (AGAIN!!).

A major contributor to this repetitious scenario is your toddler’s inability to speak in words.  Those articulation muscles are not keeping up with what your child is able to think & understand.

Although s/he understands A LOT of words, your Toddler continues to work on the actual physical components of speech:

  • Articulation- how we make sounds
  • Voicing- how we use our vocal cords
  • Fluency- tone & rhythm

Your toddler’s slower, physical ability to express may not be keeping pace with what s/he is thinking & understanding. However, here’s a little chart on what may be happening and/or what is to come.

Speech & Language Chart of Growth & Development

Age in Months Receptive / Understanding Expressive / Speaking
By 30 months*Follows 2-step directions
*Consistently understands basic nouns, verbs, pronouns
*Understands "mine" & "yours"
*Can point to many body parts when asked
*Consistently uses 2-3 word phrases
*Knows & says own name
*Produces direction words, like in, out, on, off
*Begins to name requested objects
*Can say 400 words
*Participates in simple. take/turns conversation
*Repeats words heard in conversation
By 36 months*Understands opposites like hot/cold, big/small
*Simple understanding of colors, space, time
*Recognizes how objects are used
*Understands "why" questions
*Understands most simple sentences
*Produces 4-5 word sentences
*Uses plurals
*Answers simple "who, what, where" questions
*Answers more "yes/no" questions
*Can say almost 900 words
*May begin telling stories about experiences
*Able to express some simple feelings
*Sings favorite songs
*Likes to make up silly words
*Talks aloud to self & in imaginary play



Special thanks to North Shore Pediatric Therapy 4 Kids Infographic: “Speech & Language Milestones” and Katie’s October 2012 article: “Your Child’s Speech & Language-24-36 Months @ Playing with Words 365 for sharing their information.

And by age 3, WHOA!!! Be prepared for an explosion of brain-fueled questions, answers & anything else needing to be expressed. You’re going to be amazed !!!

You Can Boost Your Toddler’s Language Literacy

The ability to think, reason & problem solve grows out of language. ~ Rudolf Steiner

You can  help grow your mini Powerhouse’s ability to speak, using  some of  these tips collected from The Early Bird  Program Manual,  “Boosting Your Toddler’s Speech & Language” @ the piri-pirilexicon & Dr. Harvey Karp’s The Happiest Toddler on the Block  :

  • Point out interesting sights & sounds at home, outside, on errands, trips
  •  Use simple, but  real language-no baby talk
  • Repeat words a lot, so your child will remember them
  • Describe everything your child is interested in
  • Gesture more
  • Ask questions in a questioning way, but don’t push for an answer
  • Tell stories
  • Sing songs, especially rhyming ones
  • Let your child hear you talking to other people, pets, birds, etc
  • Stop & listen
  • Be positive & fun

Rhyming, interactive poems are very enjoyable to your Toddler. Remember “Itsy Bitsy Spider” & “Hickory Dickory Dock” ?

I have create 5 games using 5 short, simple rhymes to play with your child to encourage  speech while having fun:

Toddler Talk : 5 Interactive Body & Picture Play Rhymes

Click on the BLB Shop below & check it out.

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/shop/blb-press-writing-collection/toddler-finger-picture-play-rhymes/

The 3 Stages of Speech Development

There are 3 stages of speech development once your child is speaking, according to Dr. Karl Konig, a therapeutic pediatrician:

  • Saying – Your child uses one-word sentences to communicate a desire (more)  or emotion (here).
  • Naming – Your child can label a thing and, then, be specific (toy/truck).
  • Talking – Your child is using whole sentences during dialogue.

Need more information? Click on this link from my Resource library:   https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/blb-resource-library/language-speech-development-sites/

Some Other Pieces to Your Toddler’s Puzzle

I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship. ~ Louisa May Alcott Little Women

Toddler-I Am Me!!
I Am Me!!

Yes, the Family Literacy Circle would not be complete unless the “personality” of your toddler is included. Believe it or not, this part of the growth & development is very important to understanding how learning is taking place as well as the communication being shared.

Dr. Harvey Karp, a pediatrician & author of The Happiest Toddler on the Block, offers a humorous & unique approach for meeting the challenges of your “cave-kid”. 

Many toddlers are a blend of easy, cautious & spirited, depending on their mood of the moment. Dr. Karp provides 9 behavior traits for parents to observe while trying to solve the “problems” s/he is gleefully creating.  They are:

  • Activity – Does your child enjoy playing quietly OR is s/he fidgety & constantly moving?
  • Regularity – Do you have a daily, predictable routine?
  • First Reaction – How does your child react to new situations?
  • Adaptability – How does your child handle change or unexpected events?
  • Intensity – Is your child mild/gentle OR boisterous/passionate?
  • Mood – Is your child usually happy/easy-going OR grumpy/easily frustrated?
  • Persistence – Does your child “go with the flow” OR fight all the way?
  • Attention Span – Is s/he focused during play OR  easily distracted?
  • Sensitivity – Is s/he unaware of small changes OR reactive to them?

Karp estimated 40% of toddlers are easy-going/flexible, 15% are cautious/sensitive  & 10% are spirited/challenging. He goes on to say that about one-third of toddlers don’t fit into any category.

My toddler was very spirited, could be cautious with some flexibility sprinkled in, but most of the time, he “steam-rolled over limits”. YAY…… What an eye-opener for adolescence-to-come!!!

What’s A Parent To Do ?!?!?

I’m not saying those few years were easy because I understood what was going on with my Mighty Mite…….  However, there were a few strategies  that worked for us, most of the time……

Having a Home School, my children & I relied on 3 of my Four Rs: Routine, Repetition & Ritual. Relax-not so much….

If you’re interested in some schedule-planning tips…..

BLB’s 10 R’s Schedule

How About a Little Chat ?!?

And now a few thoughts about communicating with your toddler-

  • Deep breathes before you begin speaking in short, simple phrases

    I'm Listening...-BarunPatro/toddler
    I’m Listening…-BarunPatro
  • See & speak eye-to-eye
  • Use gestures & facial expressions
  • Ask (see key words & phrases)
  • Re-phrase your negatives-no, don’t, can’t- into positives
  • Help your child to use words, not actions
  • Give choices-this or that?
  • Follow through on consequences-“when you/then”
  • Pick your battles, especially with a strong-willed toddler, because if you don’t – that is all you will do all day long for months & months

Grab your Relaxation whenever you can- it is a little easier in the evening, but Quiet Time is Quiet Time. In the meantime, enjoy watching your Toddler during play. It’s a powerful thing!

Follow this website link for more Parenting Your Toddler Tips:

https://www.naeyc.org/our-work/families/growing-independence-tips-parents-toddlers-and-twos

The Power of Play & Literacy

Play is the work of the child. ~ Maria Montessori

Even though your 2 year old toddler continues to play along side not with, others,  s/he may imitate some of their play movements. Parallel Play builds non-verbal & observation skills.

I Love To Play! -Kruszyyzna0
I Love To Play! -Kruszyyzna0

S/he will begin to notice patterns in the world, identify things that match & label, sort & organize things using color words. I observed toddlers at this age lining up their toys according to size & color or putting them in groups.

Around 2 1/2 years old, you may overhear your toddler engaging in fantasy, or pretend play. S/he might play simple games that require taking turns. S/he is preparing to be interested in Cooperative, or Associative Play, which usually occurs as a 3 year old.

The article, “Using Play to Build the Brain” @ gooeybrains.com, included an infographic by Bruce Perry, a leading psychiatrist at the Child Trauma Academy, explaining the developmental skills children gain through play. Here’s my version.

BLB's Bruce Perry's Play Skills Model

Encouraging & Nurturing Your Toddler’s Imagination

Imagination is more important than knowledge. ~ Albert Einstein

Listening to Pretend Play is one of the most enlightening ways to gain a glimpse into your child’s heart, mind, and spirit. It is fascinating! Even with minimal dialogue, his/her gestures, facial expressions & body language will communicate what s/he is saying during the serious work of play.

Funny Me! Frank-McKenna
Funny Me! Frank-McKenna

In the past 40 years, there’s been a revolution in our scientific understanding of babies & young children. Long before they can read or write, they have extraordinary powers of imagination and creativity, and long before they go to school, they have remarkable learning abilities. ~ Alison Gopnik “The Start of Thinking” for Time Magazine’s The Science of Childhood

Ann Ruethling & Patti Pitcher, who co-authored Under the Chinaberry Tree, observed that creativity is necessary to imagine new solutions  with new ways of living to solve the world’s problems. They offer suggestions that really work for engaging your budding critical thinker.

  • Allow time for your child to experience hours of fantasy & outdoor play with very few toys that have only one answer & are prepackaged.
  • Allow your child to be bored without rescuing him/her because it stimulates creativity.
  • Always have materials to make things available at home, like string, sticks & boxes.
  • Limit structured daily time because it closes opportunities for open-ended play.
  • Make messes & mistakes

For centuries, children have created their toy-tools out of whatever they can find around them. They  model for us-who have forgotten- how to synchronize work with play !

Your Toddler Is A Toy Maker

My parents , who raised 5, yes 5 giggly girls, love to tell the story of the rocking horse we received one Christmas. “Red” was a large, wooden, hand-painted, red horse, accented with black detail. He had heavy, coiled springs attached to a frame and lived in our living room for almost 10 years until the youngest had her last ride.

The huge box Red arrived in received most of the attention-for days-until it couldn’t stand anymore.

With nothing more than a little imagination, boxes can be transformed into forts or houses, spaceships or submarines, castles or caves. Inside a big cardboard box, a child is transported to a world of his/her own, where anything is possible. ~ National Toy Hall of Fame

Your toddler enjoys playing with a variety of  toys. Until around 3 years old s/he will continue to “mouth” them. The list is simple:

  • push & pull toys
  • large & shaped blocks
  • cars & trucks
  • rocking horse
  • tricycle or low-rider
  • small & large balls
  • musical toys
  • dolls & stuffed animals
  • dress-up clothes
  • table, chairs & play dishes

Bubbles, Bubbles, Bubbles ! A Perfect Toy!

 Do we ever “outgrow” our love of bubbles?!? Hmmmm, let’s see… bubble baths, bubbly drinks, bubble gum, foam, froth, frolic…

BUBBLES!!!!Leo-Rivas-Micoud/toddler
BUBBLES!!!!Leo-Rivas-Micoud

Bubbles are fascinating fun, especially to your toddler.  Chasing them can engage him/her for a while, especially if those bubbly “toys” make a landing before popping.

Oh yes, and popping them is fun, too! Big ones, small ones, wiggly ones, windy ones! 

Learning to make & blow bubbles is a proud moment for her/him. Added bonus-speech muscles are being worked & new vocabulary is being learned.

Besides being introduced to a few scientific facts & skills, your child is, also, learning about:

  • cause & effect
  • visual tracking
  • hand-eye coordination
  • shapes
  • imagination & creativity

Here’s a wonderful “bubble” website you can link to connect on:

https://leftbraincraftbrain.com/how-bubbles-work-20-things-to-do-with-them/

Bubbling with Excitement Over Books

You may have tangible wealth untold. Caskets of jewels and coffers of gold. Richer than I you can never be – I had a mother who read to me. ~ Strickland Gillilan

Your toddler’s brain is like  sponge, soaking up enormous amounts of information. However,  s/he needs constant repetition because s/he forgets most of what s/he is absorbing.

What Research Has Discovered

Reading is a crucial part of bonding and brain development. Although s/he is not understanding many of the words yet, his/her future depends on the number of words heard when spoken & read. (Dr. Michael Gurian, author of Nurture the Nature, 2007)

The first three years of exploring & playing with books, singing nursery rhymes, listening to stories, recognizing words & scribbling (more on this topic later on in this blog) are truly the building blocks for language & literacy development. (“Early Literacy” @zerotothree.org/BrainWonders, 2003)

Toddler Reading- Public Domain Pictures
Toddler Reading- Public Domain Pictures

When parents & loved ones show their young children how positive the reading experience is while sharing books, they play a powerful role in their children’s reading achievement. (Strickland & Denny, 1989)

Children who have had many loving, enjoyable reading experiences before coming to school “feel the joy of making sense of the mystery of print”. (Cullinen, 1989)

Research has discovered, reading favorite stories again & again (be ready to purchase several copies of several, well-loved books-I did), is very important to the literacy development of children. After repeated readings, children will “respond more frequently to questions in more complex ways”. (Teale &Sulzby 1987)

 Discovering Your Toddler’s Favorite Books

Does your toddler carry around some of his/her books?

Have you noticed her/him reading them to stuffed animals & dolls?

Good job, Parents! Reading & books are part of your child’s life.

Ready to introduce more books into your Toddler’s library?

My Very Own Library - Pexels/toddler
My Very Own Library – Pexels

Choose books with simple, realistic life images; touchy/textured parts & look-and-see discovery flaps. S/he will begin turning the pages back & forth. Soon, s/he will noticed the print and ask you what it says.

Here are some suggestions from “BrainWonders & Sharing Books with Babies” @zerotothree.com:

  • books with simple stories
  • rhyming books that can be memorized
  • bedtime books
  • books about: shapes. sizes, numbers & the alphabet
  • books about: animals, vehicles, playtime
  • books about saying hello & goodbye

Need a few actual book titles? Check out these book lists in BLB’s Resource Library:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/building-baby-and-toddlers-first-library-of-25-book-titles/

 Making Books Together

Draw a  book with your Toddler watching. Make  books with photos. Including your Toddler’s life in these photo books is fun and a great ways to build language, literacy & self-esteem. Here’s some ideas for  (Baby’s Name) Helps At Home:

  • Cooking in the Kitchen – Mommy mixes in a bowl / I can mix in a bowl;  I put water in a pot / Daddy makes pasta; etc
  • Cleaning Around the House – Mommy & I dust; Daddy & I vacuum; I help Mommy & Daddy wash, dry, fold & put away clothes
  • Playing Together – We read together; we sing & dance together; we build together; we walk the dog together

BLB Shop has a short e-book full of ideas:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/shop/blb-press-writing-collection/make-25- interactive-babylovephoto-books/

 A Few Words About Literacy & Wordless Picture Books

Sharing wordless picture books with your Toddler is a great way to encourage the growth of important Literacy skills. It builds oral language, vocabulary, comprehension & listening skills. Since you are creating the story, be sure to include a beginning, middle & end.

Spend time looking at the cover and talking about the book’s title. Enjoy the pictures, point out a few things,  and stay on one page as long as your Toddler is interested. Here is a Wordless Picture Book reference list from BLB’s Resource Library:

 https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/blb-resource-library/wordless-picture-books/

How to encourage Your Toddler’s Literacy with Reading

You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read to a child. ~ Dr. Seuss

Let's Read Together -Dassel/toddler
Let’s Read Together -Dassel

Interactive reading- talking with your child about the story while the story is being read- encourages language development. Questions about the pictures & the story engage your Toddler’s attention. Comments & predictions will soon follow.

Your 2 year old Toddler may want the story s/he has heard before to be read exactly like you’ve read it the previous 10 times.  You may hear him/her reading this same story to pets & toys.

S/he will not only be pointing & identifying objects in the pictures, s/he will begin identifying the actions, too. S/he may want to hear longer and more complex stories read at different times.

When reading a book with your Toddler, encourage good reading habits by using this sequence:

  • reading the title/author/illustrator
  • looking at the book cover, ask your child to make a prediction about the story before opening the book
  • occasionally asking your child “what is happening” by looking at the pictures, especially if s/he seems “fixed” on a picture
  • tracking the words as you read
  • occasionally asking “recall” questions – what/how/do you think
  • introducing “surprise”
  • using expression as you read/changing voices for characters
  • reading the story again
  • enjoying the story with your child & make it entertaining

NOTE: If your wiggly Toddler is not interested in reading a book together, please do not push it. S/he will bring a book to you soon. Just make sure s/he sees you & loved ones reading & writing. Yes, maybe, s/he is more interested in writing…..

 A  Writer or Artist  In Your Family Literacy Circle?

Your Toddler’s fine motor skills are becoming more defined.  S/he is able to stack block towers, string  beads, hold  a spoon when eating & turn the pages of a book.

Include your child when writing short messages- phone, greeting cards, love notes. Show your child the difference between writing & drawing. When you write the grocery shopping list, include some drawings- apples, milk jug, macaroni.

Toddler & Chalk-Debsch
Toddler & Chalk-Debsch

Make sure fat pencils, crayons & sidewalk chalk are available for your Toddler to use at home.

If your child likes to draw on paper, you can make a very special “book” together.  After her/his drawing is completed, ask about it. Write the sentence, or words, on a sticky note. Ask if you can write it on the front or back of the picture. Make a collection of these in a book you can read together.

Your Toddler’s oral and written expressions are important ways to build growth in literacy. There are no rules-just opportunities!

If you’ve read to the end of this (WHEW!) long post about your child’s BIG year, I have a little something for you & yours. Click, download & print on the link below for some PlayDay ideas with your Toddler.

Toddler Playday

 Fill out the Contact Me form if you have a question and/or concern, but don’t want to subscribe…..yet.

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

Copyright©2017BizzyLizzyBiz

Discovering the Family Literacy Circle with Your Post-Toddler (36-48 Months)

Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds that you plant. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

Your precious darling is growing from a baby into a young child.Discovering the Family Literacy Circle with Your Post-Toddler(36-48 Months)

Look at the birthday party pictures last year and compare them to this years’ party. Notice anything different? (not you-your child)

Yes, some Toddler  expressions and behaviors are still present, but something else is taking place in your dear little one. 

With an almost full set of baby teeth, more body control, and a larger, spoken vocabulary, your three year-old is becoming more confident & comfortable in his/her world.

Does it feel like many (not all, of course) of the “Two” behaviors have calmed down?

Not as many fits, tantrums, & NOOOs?!?

Fewer bites, hits, kicks, spits & throws,  rather, launches ?!?

I am talking about your three year-old, NOT you…..

Well then (BIG sigh), your Post-Toddler has arrived.

Post-Toddler, Huh?!?

Life Is Good!-CrisCris1
Life Is Good!-CrisCris1

S/he appears less frantic & can sit still for longer periods of time when engaged in an interesting activity. S/he is using words more & “body” less when expressing feelings.

S/he is showing more interest & patience with exploration & discovery. Notice how s/he is spending more time observing & imitating others.

That is why I named this stage of growth & development: Post-Toddler. Still some Toddler-stuff present, but outbursts & frustrations are less frequent. Unless s/he is tired, sick, hungry, and/or just having one of those days (don’t we all?!?).

And sometimes those “growing pains” can be….well, you know…

Some “Changes” You May Be Seeing

Body & Movement Skills

  • appears taller & leaner
  •  puts on shoes & dresses with some help
  •  feeds oneself with a spoon
  • throws overhand & tries to catch
  • jumps & climbs
  • pedals a trike or low-rider
  • holds a crayon with thumb & first 2 fingers
  • enjoys manipulating play-doh/clay, sand & water
  • YOU CAN: show your child how to hop, tiptoe, waddle, slither

Brain Growth & Expression

  • understands “now”, “soon” & “later”
  • asks who, what, where & when questions
  • shows an interest in alike & different
  • identifies the colors red, blue, yellow & green
  • talks in 3-5 word sentences
  • may stumble over some words, but is NOT stuttering
  • YOU CAN: add small, new bits of information to your child’s sentences

Emotional & Social Development

  • follows simple directions
  • accepts suggestions
  • makes choices between 2 different things
  • enjoys making others laugh & being silly
  • enjoys playing with other for short periods of time
  • wants adult attention & approval
  • likes looking at “when you were a baby” pictures
  • YOU CAN: ask for help with simple household tasks

Now that wasn’t your three year-old a year ago, was it?

Need more info? PBS Parents is a great site loaded with specifics. Click on the link below.

http://www.pbs.org/parents/childdevelopmenttracker/three/socialandemotionalgrowth.html

Speaking of Speaking….

How Does That Fit?BrunoNascimento
How Does That Fit?BrunoNascimento

Your Post-Toddler’s Language Literacy continues to develop & grow.

S/he can enunciate most consonants & vowels with a few consonant blends, too, like “tw” & “kw”.

With over 300 words in his/her expressive vocabulary, s/he is talking A LOT more – to you, toys, pets, nature. Although your child, at this stage, still thinks each word has only one meaning, s/he is, also, spending much of the day asking A LOT of questions.

Think “who, did what, when & where”. These questions/answers are actually the building blocks of reading comprehension’s Main Idea. You are finally discovering what is in that hard little head of hers/his.

Your 3 year-old believes there is an answer to every question asked (isn’t there?!?). Even “Magic !” is a reasonable answer to him/her.

Be ready, though, s/he may answer your question with a question. Or water the dog to make it grow…..

Dr. Harvey Karp, a pediatrician who wrote The Happiest Toddler on the Block, suggests using “Okay?” at the end of ideas, directions, etc. This simple word shows your child you, not only, have an interest in her/his point of view, but also, hope s/he   agrees with yours……possibly…..

How You Can Continue to Encourage Your Post-Toddler’s Language Literacy Growth

Iowa State University Extension & Outreach’s Info-Sheet on Developmental Milestones, “Ages & Stages at 3 Years”, offers these suggestions:

  • Use directional words, such as “in/on/under” when explaining &/or answering.
  • Use comparison words, like “big/little, same/different, front/behind”.
  • Sing songs, rhymes, sounds, words & simple sentences.
  • Ask your child to tell you a story.
  • Have many back-and-forth conversations, using short sentences, asking questions & listening.
  • Talk about colors, shapes & numbers everyday.
  • Take a Nature Walk. Look for & talk about shapes, sizes, colors, textures, smells & sounds.
  • Teach your child to memorize his/her first & last name.

Play Power = Brain Power

A mind once stretched to a new idea never returns to its original size. ~ Oliver Wendall Holmes

Play is the essential tool we use, as humans, to develop our 5 senses, gross & fine motor skills, receptive & expressive language, as well as emotional & social skills.

It, also, influences the amount of brain cells we produce.

Hmmm, I Wonder....Bessi
Hmmm, I Wonder….Bessi

Exploration, curiosity & determination are the necessary paths we use to discover how to understand our world, whether large or small.

Nothing child-like about it!

It’s a survival skill we use everyday and all day long. Well, most of us anyway…..

Currently, your Post-Toddler’s brain continues to develop in 2 areas: the Limbic, or emotional part of the brain & the Cortical, or thinking part of the brain.

Emotional/Social growth begins around 12 months and continues until 48 months. This stage of development can be encouraged with play involving teams: winning, losing, taking turns & sharing.

The growth of concrete & abstract thinking begins around 36 months and continues until 6 years old. Play involving humor, language, arts & games will encourage this stage of development.

Serious Play Is Hard Work

And hard work can not be successfully accomplished without serious play….

So, if you equate play with fun ~ it doesn’t always work that way. Play is the action, or process used during creation, exploration, & experimentation until we reach the destination, or discovery.

A bit wordy, I know, but  synchronizing work with play is “how I roll”.

I combined Kristina @ Planes & Balloons’ 2016 article, “Some of the Many Benefits of Play”   with Perry, Hogan & Marlin’s 2000 article, “Curiosity, Pleasure & Play: Skills Developed Through Play”  to create an info-table explaining the impact of play on your child’s brain development.

Play & Your Child's Brain Development

BRAIN AREA BRAIN AREA BRAIN AREA
Emotional & Social
Development
Self Growth Thought Development
Empathy Control Problem Solving
Stress Management Expression Language
Negotiation Confidence Mathematics
Social Interaction Reliance Creativity
Teamwork Goal Setting Concentration
Follow Rules Memory

Additionally, your child’s desire & ability to Role Play, I feel, is developed within all 3 of these brain areas. Creativity & self-expression may influence the particular role s/he is “playing”. Is s/he fantasizing, imitating, and/or coping ?

Be Your Child’s Play Promoter

Tunnel Play-OmarMedina
Tunnel Play-OmarMedina

Although your Post-Toddler still enjoys playing beside others & watching them play, soon, s/he will have the tools to play WITH other children.

The ability to share, take turns and cooperate continues to grow & develop with each passing day.

Remember, some people are more socially-driven than others.

In 2016 NourishBaby displayed Shoptwinkie.com’s infographic, “The Importance of Play in Early Childhood”. Learning through discovery will happen if you:

  • don’t take over (Here, let me….)
  • ask questions (How are you going to….)
  • allow him/her to find the answers independently (Oh, I see…….)

Interactive Talk & Play

If your child enjoys interactive language while playing, another part of the material included script suggestions for supporting the different stages in your child’s play:

Planning

  • What will you need ?
  • Let’s think about what you are going to do.
  • Tell me how you will start. What will happen then?

Wondering

  • I wonder what this is.
  • What do you think that is for?
  • Why do you think that happened?

Remembering

  • Tell me how it all started.
  • Can you remember what happened when….?
  • How did that feel?

Predicting

  • Can you guess what will happen next?
  • What do you think will happen if you….?
  • What do you think will happen if you don’t….?

Providing A Defined Play Space At Home

Not all parents want to turn their homes into a giant playground. Many children enjoy having a “space of their own”.  This “office of play” is part of your child’s growth & development.

Keep an ear out though. Too quiet for an extended period of time and you may need to “step into the office….”

Creating an area with sturdy (so you can sit in them, too), child-sized chairs & a table encourages your child to sit and focus on independent play. Building with blocks, having a tea party, working puzzles, making a race track or construction site, creating art, and even reading a book can become a part of your Post-Toddler’s learning.

Any amount of time, even a minute or two, during which  children sit and entertain themselves with one thing helps them grow. ~ Felicia Sklamberg, a clinical specialist in pediatric occupational therapy at New York University Langone Medical Center

With Open-Ended Toys & Free Play

Open-ended toys are really the discovery tools of learning & growing. By definition they are “things” that can be used in a variety of ways to encourage:

  • play
  • creativity
  • imagination
  • problem solving

I Can Play A Lot with a Ball-CherylHolt
I Can Play A Lot with a Ball-CherylHolt

Does your child like to stack block towers, sort objects by size & colors, and/or put a 3-6-piece puzzle together? Play outside with large wheeled toys, all sizes of balls, and/or sticks & rocks ?

Are you wondering what other kinds of toys will encourage your child’s brain health, growth & development ?

Will these toy-tools encourage discovery within the Family Literacy Circle ?

“Yes” to all questions?

Here’s a list of some other open-ended, free play tools (with their skill sets), your 3 year old will probably enjoy :

Sensory

  • musical instruments
  • music for song & dance
  • play-doh & clay
  • sand
  • water

Gross Motor

  • tricycle/low-rider
  • slide
  • wagon
  • any large-wheeled toy
  • different-sized balls
  • medium & large blocks

Fine Motor

  • nesting & stacking toys
  • pegboard
  • 3-6-piece puzzles
  • crayons, paint/brushes, glue & paper

Role Play

  • dress-up clothes
  • pretend costumes
  • community helper hats & tools
  • tents & teepees
  • kitchen stuff
  • castles & houses
  • barns & fences
  • racetracks
  • street signs & stores
  • puppets & dolls
  • habitat animals: farm, jungle, forest, water

Problem Solving

  • matching games
  • building blocks with a variety of colors, sizes & shapes
  • construction toys (needed to be put together)

And BOOKS, BOOKS, BOOKS !!!

Make it a rule never to give a child a book you would never read yourself. ~ George Bernard Shaw

By now some of those well-loved books might need to be replaced with a second copy. Some of those “baby books” may need to be tucked away for another time & place.

Hmmm-This Book Looks Good!-Bies
Hmmm-This Book Looks Good!-Bies

Are you taking your Post-Toddler to a StoryTime at your local library, play group, elementary school or rec center? If so, observe what kinds of books are holding your child’s interest.

Many 3 year-olds love to hear stories about other places and people.

Pull some age-appropriate books from the library shelves in the children’s Picture Books, or Easy Books section.

Sit down & spread them out.  See which ones will get “checked out” for home reading.

Have your 3 year-old try these 10 books on for size:

  • DON’T LET THE PIGEON DRIVE THE BUS! ~ Mo Willens
  • THE OLIVIA SERIES ~ Ian Falconer
  • A FISH OUT OF WATER ~ Helen Palmer
  • WHOEVER YOU ARE ~ Mem Fox
  • THE MIXED-UP CHAMELEON ~ Eric Carle
  • GREEN EGGS AND HAM ~ Dr. Seuss
  • CARS AND TRUCKS AND THINGS THAT GO ~ Richard Scarry
  • THE INCREDIBLE BOOK EATING BOY ~ Oliver Jeffers
  • BLUE HAT, GREEN HAT ~ Sandra Boynton
  • GO, DOG, GO ! ~ PD Eastman

Be forewarned – I had to replace most of these books at home and in my classroom…….several times….

Need a few more suggestions ?

Click on my Resource Library links below.

 https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/blb-resource-library/wordless-picture-books/

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/building-baby-and-toddlers-first-library-of-25-book-titles/

   On – The – Go Reading Nooks With  Your Post-Toddler

Reading should not be presented to children as a chore or duty. It should be offered to them as a precious gift. ~ Kate DiCamillo

If you have been steadily reading to your Post-Toddler since s/he was in-utero, you probably have a little bookworm in your home.

Alas…..Maybe not….

And Then What Happened?-DeeNurpalah
And Then What Happened?-DeeNurpalah

Some children love being read to until they can hop off  the cuddly lap of story-land.

Catch  ‘Em & Read:

  • before bedtime
  • during bathtime
  • before or during quiet time
  • during snacktime
  • under a tree outside
  • in a hammock outside
  • in the tent or teepee
  • under some covers with a flashlight

Some children would rather hear a story-telling instead of a book-story. “Stories can and should be part of your household routines & schedules. They can be as short or long as your listener’s attention.” Lisa Lipkin, Bringing the Story Home

Non-Book Literacy Stories

Spinning Tales:

What's Next?-Lichdinhtb
What’s Next?-Lichdinhtb

  • Make sure to include the story elements: beginning (characters & setting), middle (action & problem), ending (solution & prediction)
  • Ask & answer  interactive questions throughout the story
  • Invite your child to contribute to the story-telling
  • Capture your child’s attention while on a drive or a walk, in a waiting room or line, at the bus or train stop, during bathtime or before bedtime
  • Use fantasy, humor & family history as part of the story
  • Dress-up in role-play clothing  & ask your child to tell you a story about the character you are
  • Include simple props & toys for settings, characters & dialogue

Every Time We Read A Book…..

Whether the book is fiction or non-fiction, here are some tips for building literacy while reading aloud at this age & older:

  • Encourage solid pre-reading habits- daily reads, book handling, word tracking, time & order (first/middle/last), retelling with complete sentences.
  • Ask interactive questions while reading a story- what will happen next/how does the character feel/has this ever happened to you.
  • Read slowly & wait for her/him to turn the pages.
  • Answer your listener’s questions.
  • Make up rhyming words with some of the simpler words.
  • Use the story’s pictures to make up more stories.
  • Let the listener “read” the story.

I Think My Child Is Ready To Read…..

The first time my son (at 3 years-old) said, “I can read this book to you!”, my wide eyes glistened with anticipation. I couldn’t wait to hear my little genius read ME a story….at 3 YEARS OLD!!!!!

Sure enough, he proudly held the book and  carefully “read” each page of  The  Little Red Car, one of his favorite boardbooks.

He didn’t miss a word. I clapped with glee!

Over the next few weeks, he read & read this book to me….faster & faster. I guess he was becoming one with the little red car.

One day I asked him to point to the words as he read them…….uh huh…..

Smiling, I never said a word, and he continued to read the story to me everyday for the next few years.

We, also, continued playing colors, shapes, letters, sounds & word-picture rhyming games.

Learning, knowing , and applying the concepts of same & different shapes is a major step for success in letter recognition. Seeing the same & different shapes in the world prepares your child to make sense of “visual discrimination”.

BLB Shop has a collection of Interactive Color & Shape games created to prepare your child to recognize these pre-reading concepts:

I Can Sort & Match: 15 Shape & Color Games

Click on the link below to check it out.

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/shop/blb-press-writing-collection/15-shape-color-games-ages-3-up/

I became more consistent tracking words with their pictures when I read simple sentence stories.

What Are Pre-Reading Behaviors?

Is your child  showing you some of these Pre-Reading behaviors :

  • Makes comments about language & unusual words
  • Makes up word games
  • Creates & plays with words using rhyme
  • Invents “silly” words
  • Plays with sounds
  • Plays with magnetic letters
  • Likes to read alphabet books
  • Sings the alphabet song
  • Points out “environmental print”, like the S in a stop sign
  • Knows it is the print that is read in stories

Hmmmm, Not Quite Ready….How Can I Help ?

What Will I Learn Today?-Tung
What Will I Learn Today?-Tung

Bookoola Ink from Australia produced a wonderful infographic, explaining what your child needs to know before learning to read:

  • Rhyme the sounds that letters make
  • Track / follow objects with eyes
  • Talk with an increasing vocabulary
  • Build things using fingers & hands independently to hold books & turn pages
  • Do puzzles to differentiate sizes, shapes, lines & directions
  • Look at books frequently for discovery & fun
  • Listen to someone read every day

The 5 Must-Know Skills for Reading Readiness

First of all, how is your child’s vocabulary progressing ? S/he has learned most words indirectly through your daily conversations, interactive read-alouds, both fiction & nonfiction as well as  movies/screen time. Build his/her vocabulary for understanding in these 4 areas:

Did You Know?-BenWhite@upsplash
Did You Know?-BenWhite@upsplash

  • Listening Vocabulary are words we hear & understand when hearing directions & a story
  • Speaking Vocabulary are words we use when we talk about our day & ask/answer questions
  • Reading Vocabulary are words we understand when we read, retell stories or create story from pictures we see
  • Writing Vocabulary are words we use when we write & draw pictures to tell a story

 

All About Learning Press, Inc has a concise list with tips for your eager-to-read child. Do be sure your Post-Toddler is comfortable and consistent with these skills:

Motivation to Read

  • Enjoys being read to
  • Pretends to read or write
  • Often asks for read-aloud time
  • Is enthusiastic about books
  • Thinks reading is fun

Print Awareness

  • Realizes print on a page are words with meaning when spoken
  • Holds  book correctly
  • Understands the direction that books are read-front to back
  • Knows print is read top to bottom
  • Recognizes sentences are read from left to right

Listening Comprehension

  • Understands story sequence
  • Can retell a familiar story with accuracy
  •  Answers simple questions about a story
  • Asks questions during read-alouds
  • Understands the meaning of words being read
  • Relates to the words being read in some way
  • Understands both verbal & visual information

Letter Recognition

  • Can sing the Alphabet song with help
  • Recognizes upper & lowercase letters
  • Begins to associate letters with sounds

Phonological Awareness

  • Can hear & identify different sounds in spoken words
  • Can rhyme words
  • Knows a sentence has multiple , individual words
  • Can blend sounds to make a word
  • Can identify the beginning & ending sound of a word

How Do I Teach the Alphabet

If your child is is ready, you might want to begin with her/his name. You can try to use upper & lowercase letters, but for beginning readers & writers, uppercase letters are not only easier to differentiate & recognize, but also, easier to write.

Read lots of engaging alphabet books ~ here’s a few my children & I have enjoyed:

Rhyming Text

  • ABC ANIMAL RHYMES ~ G. Andreae
  • ABC AT HOME ~ A. Hawthorne & D. Zawada
  • CHICKA CHICKA BOOM BOOM ~ J.Archambault
  • DR. SEUSS’ ABC ~ Dr. Seuss
  • MY FIRST RHYMING PICTURE ABC ~ B. Miles

Vivid Illustrations

  • BRUNO MUNARI’S  ABC ~ B. Munari
  • MISS SPIDER’S ABC ~ D. Kirk
  • THE PHONICS ABC ~ K. Dare

Real-Life Photos

  • ALPHABET CITY ~ S.T. Johnson
  • FARM ALPHABET BOOK ~ J. Miller

Playing alphabet games is another way to continue the learning process. It is a process, so let your ABC learner set the pace. Several five-minute lessons each day may be good. So will skipping some days.

Don’t forget to repeat, maybe with a different lesson for review.

Let your child select the letters. Unless ABC order is insisted upon by your Post-Toddler, here are a few sequences to consider:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/teaching-alphabet-sequence-guide/

Make Alphabet Learning Fun!

Exploring each letter with hands-on activities is  definitely the way to keep your Post-Toddler engaged. Using the 5 senses and physical movement is necessary as well.

Change up the learning-approach with a variety of activities. Use your child’s interest (and attention span) to guide you.

Include lessons as part of your daily routine. Remember to review & repeat to build confidence & risk-taking when introducing a new letter & its sound.

Let your Post-Toddler be the teacher. It will help you know what s/he knows and needs to learn.

Click on my Resource Library link below for some great ABC activities websites:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/15-abc-activities-websites/

Literacy’s Secret Pathway: Writing to Read

Many of my Reluctant Readers learned to read NOT by reading books, but through their own writings. They were always ready to read their own words instead of another’s words.

Once A Huge Red Ship.....IIlcsuszka writing to read
Once A Huge Red Ship…..IIlcsuszka

Their stories, surprisingly, with a few  prompts, usually included all the elements of a fluid tale: beginning (characters & setting), middle (problem & solution), and ending. Another follow-up story was always in the tank, so to speak.  But, I’m getting ahead of myself here….

Drawing, painting, coloring & writing are all very powerful expressions. For parents &  educators, they offer magical windows into the heart, mind & soul of anyone, especially a child.

But holding & controlling a paintbrush, crayon and/or pencil is a developmental feat for your young child. It takes a lot of practice with some determination, usually.

Fine Motor Skills Mastery

The mastery of fine motor skills, paired with the ability to create images in your head, is an incredible accomplishment for anyone, especially a child.

I am always amazed when watching a child in the creative zone!

In 2011 Katie Norris @ Mommy with Selective Memory and her friend Susan Case, an experienced Kindergarten teacher, created a GREAT list of Activities to Develop Fine Motor Skills  :

  • pouring elements using funnels, tubes, colanders
  • sorting small objects
  • pushing objects through a slot
  • picking up marbles
  • building with blocks, logs, legos
  • lacing with lacing cards
  • grasping & placing puzzle pieces
  • arranging a variety of objects
  • picking up & placing stickers
  • playing with play-doh: pulling, pressing, stretching, rolling, pounding, squeezing, pinching
  • squeezing
  • shaking
  • beading with yarn & string
  • marking with fat pencils, fat crayons, sidewalk chalk
  • cutting with safety scissors

Self-Portrait EfraimStachter writing to read 36-48m
Self-Portrait EfraimStachter

Writing & Drawing : Same But Different

Although  your child is using the same physical skills to write & draw – the brain has other ideas. Your Post-Toddler needs to understand that writing & drawing are different.

Print carries a message. Show your beginning writer the many ways to use writing:

  • names & addresses
  • shopping lists
  • greeting cards
  • love notes
  • phone messages
  • to-do lists

Put big dots with a connecting line in a column on paper. Encourage your Post-Toddler’s “scribblings” for making a list of :

  • favorite toys
  • favorite activities
  • wish list
  • favorite foods
  • favorite colors
  • favorite animals

Write in large, traceable letters what the words are underneath or beside each entry.

Bookoola Ink from Australia produced a wonderful infographic, explaining what your child needs to know before learning to write:

  • Imagine – make up stories when painting & creating
  • Scribble & Draw – make marks & shapes to communicate messages
  • Play with letters & words
  • Manipulate – paintbrushes, crayons, pencils & chalk
  • Build – use fingers independently
  • Climb – need strong arms & body muscles to sit up & write
  • Someone to show me how important writing is everyday

What Is Pre – Writing

Learning to write in a legible way can be very challenging (see a note from your doctor). Muscle control is key as well as grasp & flexibility.

Doodling & pathway lines are good ways to prepare your child’s fingers & hand for handwriting. There are pages you can find at teacher stores & on line with fun ways to get to the “treasure”.

Anna Luther @ CincinnatiChildrens.org has a few pre-writing activity suggestions for your 3-year-old:

  • Name Tracing with your child using a highlighter on paper; try using upper & lowercase letters
  • Cutting Practice out of magazines & catalogs; glue on paper & write the simple names underneath
  • Play Doh Rope Letters formed on top of a large chosen letter you have written on paper
  • Dot – To – Dot Letters written on paper for your child to connect

Please remember to keep in mind every child grows & develops at his/her own pace. These ideas are suggestions for creating Literacy opportunities when your child is ready. And s/he will let you know as long as the activities are available & FUN!

Isn’t this an exciting time for you & your Post-Toddler?

Please share any accomplishments, questions, comments and/or concerns by filling out the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing to BizzyLizzyBiz. I look forward to hearing from you!

However if you wish to join the BLB Exclusive for additional  tips, ideas, updates & resources, please fill out the form below to Subscribe for FREE!

 

 

Building the Family Literacy Circle’s Language & Play with Your “I AM FOUR !”

While we try to teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about. ~ Angela Schwindt

WOW! Can you believe your baby is ALREADY 4 years old ?

And how DIFFERENT your child is from only a year ago ?

Way  too energetic, busy & imaginative to spend time with …..tantrums (most of the time….)?

Becoming a problem solver right before your very eyes?

Humorous? Very chatty, using LOTS of new words?

Wants to play WITH others?

I mean…. just the PHYSICAL accomplishments alone are HUGE:

  • runs, hops,  jumps & SKIPS (really worked hard on that one skill); leaps & balance are next…..
  • catches, throws & BOUNCES (whoa!) a ball; kicking & hitting on the horizon
  • pedals & steers a trike or lowrider; downhill racing….yikes!!!!
  • unzip, unsnap & unbutton clothing (yay?)
  • uses spoon, fork…….& knife (serrated butter) to feed, not propel, yet…….

SOOOOO, your (baby)child is performing these daily tasks solo with  A LOT of pride:

  • washing (with soap) & drying hands (on a towel….when reminded)
  • using utensils to eat (skillfully)
  • brushing teeth
  • combing hair
  • dressing in clothes ?!? (another whoa……)

Kindergarten is right around the corner (YIKES)…..

 Speaking of “Very Chatty”…..

Why & How ? MichaelMims
Why & How ? MichaelMims

Did you just hear your child say….”actually” and/or “as a matter of fact” ?!?!?

Here’s a fun & interesting activity ~ count how many times your four-year-old asks “WHY?” in a day, afternoon, hour….

I remember thinking to myself ~ after offering a reasonable, age-appropriate response to my little builder’s “why ?” ~ he is still asking “why”…. 

And “because I said so” never worked….

Oh, I did say, on several, well more than several occasions, “well, why do you think…..” and had my “mind blown” more than a few times as well !

“How?” questions are, also, favorites of the four-year-old inquiring & expanding mind.

Speaking of questions – asked & answered – you may want to find out which “wh-” questions your small inquisitor can understand & answer. for example, ask this series of related questions several hours after the fact:

  • What did you eat for snack?
  • Where did you eat your snack?
  • When did you eat your snack? ( a little more challenging because the concept of time is still developing)
  • How did you eat your snack?
  • Who did you eat your snack with ?
  • Why did you eat your snack ?

Building on what is known to acquire more answers is, in my opinion, what your “I AM FOUR!” child is exploring, discovering & constructing. Being able to verbalize so many thoughts & questions her/his brain has been working on for several years is especially gratifying. So, prepare to become the go-to Fountain of Knowledge for your preschooler.

These questioning marathons are wonderful opportunities as skill- builders:

  • responding in conversation-mode 
  • creating more complex sentences
  • sharing what is learned with others
  • critical thinking   (more on that later)
  • following sequential directions
  • storytelling- imagined & real
  • comprehending stories read/told
  • listening for important, relevant information
  • understanding new vocabulary

The Listening & Speaking Language of Literacy

Yes, right now, your four-year-old not only understands 3-4 THOUSAND words. s/he can, also, speak 1500 words…in complex sentences.

Don’t worry if you overhear your growing child “talking to her/himself”. S/he is just practicing conversation skills.

You may even hear him/her using a simpler sentence structure when speaking to younger children ! Amazing, huh ?!?

A word about enunciation – s, ch, sh, z, j, v, th, & zh are still difficult to produce and will probably continue to be for the next few years.

Is s/he creating words when a word needed for expressing a thought isn’t in his/her vocabulary? How wonderful is that?  Playing with words is a great building block for reading.  Keep those words in an “I AM FOUR!” dictionary.

Vocabulary Builders

There are many ways to help increase your child’s vocabulary:

  • Read aloud – often.
  • Use new, “big” words during daily conversations.
  • Make sure s/he understands the meanings of new words. Ask.
  • Add descriptive words to your stories & your child’s stories.
  • Create picture/word charts or word walls. review.
  • Use themes to grow vocabulary: Halloween, seasons, animals, foods, etc
  • Identify objects using color, number, same/different, size (big/little) 
  • Introduce quantity comparison words, like empty & full, more & less
  •  Teach positional & directional concept words

What Are Directional & Positional Concept Words ?

Both lists of these concept words answer where or  how objects & people are placed or arranged.

Directional & Positional concept words add dimension & more precise descriptors to your child’s  vocabulary. They, not only help define his/her world, but also, bring a greater understanding of order into it.

You can teach these vocabulary words everyday as part of your conversations with your child.

Building MsC
Building DirectionsMsC

Make it into a fun, interactive game using toys. Take turns putting the block in front of the bear and, then, behind the bear. Place the car near the ball and. then, far away from the ball.

Click on the link below to download & copy a list of these beginning concept words.

Beginning Directional & Positional Words

 If your child is struggling to learn these spatial concepts, here are a few teaching tips from Carrie Clark, a speech pathologist @ speechandlanguagekids.

  • Teach by demonstration & object, one pair of concept words at a time, ie up & down
  • Hand your child the object, telling him/her to hold it up in the air or down on the  floor
  • Ask a yes/no question while you demonstrate: Am I holding the (object) up in the air? Down on the floor?
  • Have your child tell you whether s/he is holding the (object) up in the air or down on the floor.

If the pair of concept words are too confusing, choose a different pair or just begin with one word of the pair.

Are You Following Directions ?

I cannot tell you how many 100s (uh-1000s) of times I asked this question as a classroom teacher ! OMG!!!!

Even when repeating the directions and, then, having students parrot back those same directions successfully, the follow – through lacked success….. Really- “Put your name on your paper.” Some of my FIFTH graders were not doing this, even with a prompt! GOOD GRIEF!!!

Perhaps some early childhood intervention will help prepare your pre-schooler for the onslaught of directions that will be part of the daily elementary school routine for every activity. AND from a  variety of teachers.

Developmentally, your four-year-old is not only understanding &  usually following 3 step directions, but also,  those directions do not have to be related.

Sidebar ~ when giving directions, try to say “please” & “thank you”. It is a good opportunity for modeling manners & showing appreciation. 

Does your child struggle with this skill? 

Click on the link below for access to The BLB Resource Library’s :

 Meeting the FOLLOWING DIRECTIONS Challenge

Let me know if the strategy works for you & yours !

Oh, and FYI, here’s the link to Carrie Clark’s great website for a ton of Speech & Language information, tips & games:

https://www.speechandlanguagekids.com/

 Freedom to Play Promotes Brain Power

Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning. For children, play is serious learning! ~ Fred Rogers

By the age of four, 85% of  your child’s core brain structure is formed. This core brain structure is the basis for future health and academic success. 

Play = Brain Power MiPham
Play = Brain Power MiPham

Studies continue to pour in regarding the critical role free play has in the growth and development of the brain, as well as physical   and social skills.

In 2007  the American Academy of Pediatrics reported that play stimulates brain growth in the areas of:

  • attention span
  • focus
  • visual tracking
  • hand-eye coordination

A research team at the University of Arkansas linked play to   increases in cognitive & thinking skills at infancy,  3 years of age & again at 4.5 years of age.

Various studies have linked higher learning skills  to playing with blocks.

Pretend play increases language & vocabulary skills in both speaking & understanding.

Play promotes, not only, the mental health of your child, but also, his/her physical health:

  • gross & fine motor control
  • strength
  • endurance

The social development of your child during play is HUGE! (more on play stages & types later) Play, not only, teaches your child how to play, but also, how to play with others. Cooperative play promotes:

  • creative thinking
  • problem solving
  • decision making
  • communication skills of listening, cooperating & negotiating

Free play isn’t just something children like to do ~ free play is something they NEED to do.

The Price of Free Play

In 2011, Dr. Peter Gray, a Boston University psychology professor, published an article in the American Journal Of Play regarding the importance of play. Gray and other play experts have noted the relationship between the decline of free playtime and the rise of depression, anxiety & suicides.

As the average amount of time spent in highly structured play, such as organized sports, play dates, enrichment classes, etc, rises, so do these mental health issues.

Passive leisure spent on screen time, such as television, video games. texting, etc, is, also, impacting the mental health of our youngsters’ growth & development in a negative way.

How to encourage Quality Play Time

Oompah.com of “naturally brilliant toys” created a wonderful infographic with these simple, every-day tips you probably already include within your child’s play-scape.

Use everyday opportunities / schedules are not necessary

  • bathing time
  •  cooking a meal
  • setting the table
  • making home repairs
  • walking around the neighborhood
  • running errands
  • listening to music

Interactive Play

  • get on the floor
  • put together new puzzles
  • teach how to take turns during games
  • take an interest in your child’s games

Add “loose parts”  to encourage creativity during play

  •  make blankets, logs, ropes, buckets & boxes available
  • items that can be moves, changed, combined, manipulated

Go Outdoors

Water Play Frank-McKenna
Water Play Frank-McKenna

  • pitch a tent in the backyard
  • play & splash in the rain
  • plant a garden
  • make nature art
  • build a fort
  • collect rocks
  • watch wildlife
  •  go on a nature treasure hunt
  • blow bubbles

There’s Play & Then, There’s Play

Your preschooler is beginning to play WITH others more. S/he is learning the interactive lessons of give, take & cooperation ~ the Social stage of play.

Did you know within each of the stages of  play, there  are different types of play  ~ around 16 according to A Playworker’s Taxonomy of Play Types by B. Hughes? Your child has been engaged in a variety of play “types” since birth. With the help of the website, thehealingpathwithchildren.com , I have listed 14 of them in alphabetical, NOT developmental order.

Check out this “Table of Play”.

PLAY TYPESDEFINITION AND/OR CHARACTERISTICSPLAY ACTIONS
Communicationusing words, suggestions & gesturesmime, charades, jokes, play acting, singing, whispering, pointing, poetry, ball games
Creativeusing self-expression & imagination to make & change things with an element of surprisedesign, explore, materials, tools, props, equipment, experiment
Deeptaking physical risks, developing survival skills & conquering fearclimb obstacles, lifting large objects, roller skating, gymnastics, lighting campfires
Exploratorymanipulating and/or moving objects for property, possibility & content informationhandling, throwing, banging, stacking, mouthing
Fantasyrearranging the world in an unlikely way ~ make-believetall as a skyscraper, tiny as an ant, go into outer-space, slay a dragon, climb Mt. Everest
Imaginativeignoring the rules of the physical worldbecome a tree, boat, animal, robot, alien, laser beam, teapot, hammer, spaceship
Locomotormoving in any or every physical directionchase, tag, hide & seek, tree climbing, hopping, skipping. turning around in circles
Masterycontrolling & using the materials of naturedigging holes, building a dam, constructing shelters, gathering food to eat
Objectusing hand-eye manipulation & movements on an objectpainting with brushes, coloring with crayons, drawing with chalk, pouring with a cup
Recapitulativeexploring family history & traditionsstories, folklore, culture, rituals, rhymes
Roleusing common, usual tools for interactionsweeping with a broom, talking on the phone, pushing the grocery cart, mixing the soup
Rough & Tumbleusing physical contact to discover flexibility & strengthtouching, tickling, wrestling, interactive exercising
Socio-Dramaticacting out real-life, personal experiencesbeing mommies & daddies, playing house, going shopping,
cooking meals, disciplining
Symbolicusing objects to represent other thingsa branch is a wand, a rock is a person, a string is a crown, a block is a cookie

See how busy your child has been synchronizing work with play ?!?

The Real Promise of Imagination

The imaginative child will become the imaginative man or woman most apt to create, to invent, and, therefore, to foster civilization. ~ L. Frank Baum

One of the most endearing experiences I had during my years as an educator in my Home Day School involved listening to children’s creative role-play.

Whether indoors or in nature, they were always entertaining each other with make-believe on the real life stage or a fantasy world.

The perceptions they revealed were enlightening as well as fascinating !

Rocks became feasts, sticks became magic wands, leaves became messages, and acorns became magic spells.

Blankets were capes, pillows were tunnels, tables were caves, and chairs were obstacle courses.

Nicola, a mother of 5 & creator of the site – craftykidsathome, shared her insights in the blog, “Benefits of Imaginative Play”. 

  • develops creativity, especially for problem solving
  • grows imagination, especially for story-telling
  • encourages language skills, especially for vocabulary
  • improves social skills, especially for cooperation
  • introduces career research, especially for “when I grow up..”
  • teaches life skills, especially for home chore contributions
  • explains real life scenarios, especially for current events

Unless, of course, your youngster is a total realist….then, this natural childhood playtime will needs to be “taught” and encouraged. its value is ENORMOUS!

A Play Plan

What “make-believe play behaviors” do you notice your 4 year-old child displaying?

Dr. Shen-Li Lee, author of Brainchild and creator of the parenting website @ Figur8.net, shares some examples of “immature play” vs “mature play”:

Immature Play

  • repeats the same actions over & over
  • uses objects realistically NOT creatively
  • does not use toys or props in make-believe role-play
  • uses few words & dialogue to create play scenarios
  • interacts minimally with other children
  • cannot describe what will be played in advance
  • conflicts with others about props & roles
  • will play in scenarios for only 5-10 minutes

Mature Play

  • creates & acts out pretend scenarios
  • uses toys & props in symbolic ways to fit into the scenarios
  • uses a lot of language & includes imitative speech during role play
  • includes & interacts with others during role play
  • adds new ideas for multiple roles during the scenarios
  • discusses roles & actions before enacting scenarios
  • solves conflicts & invents props as problem solutions
  • can extend play scenarios for long periods of time, even days

There are several “schools of thought” regarding a preschool child’s growth and development through play:

Play Plans-Mufidpwt
Play Plans-Mufidpwt

Jean Piaget‘s theory states different stages of intelligence provide “self-initiated discovery” opportunities to develop independence and motivation. 

Lev Vygotsky‘s theory needs parent/teacher-guided social interactions to help the young child grow play from “immature to mature”.

Bizzy Lizzy‘s theory is a young, growing mind needs both: an engaging, stimulating environment to promote independent thought coupled with nurturing, interactive “teachers”.

If you want to assist your young builder with her/his play growth & development, check out ” Vygotsky’s Play Plan Guide for Parents & Teachers” in BLB’s Resource Library link below.

 Vygotsky’s Play Plan Guide for Parents & Teachers

Toys As Literacy & Pretend-Play Tools

“We all can dance,” he said, “if we find the music we love.”  ~       Giles Andreae Giraffes Can’t Dance

Does your “BIG” 4 year-old, who is trying to figure out the meaning of everything, want everything s/he sees on TV, in stores, at school, and, of course,  anything his/her friends have in their possession? See the relationship between the two? 

New studies show most preschoolers prefer to play with objects that will teach them the most. This spontaneous,  “active learning” of play gives them greater experiences about how those objects work. Alison Gopnik The Philosophical Baby 2009

Oompah Toys.com’s infographic “Playtime!” includes a toy list for Highest Quality Playtime. These toys are open-ended, which means they encourage creativity & imagination. They, also,  offer  multiple opportunities for a variety of pretend play scenarios.

Here’s their list (with some additions)  of what kinds of toys & tools encourage what types of play:

Learning

  • books (see my Resource Library for some suggestions)
  • alphabet toys
  • strategy & board games (click on the link below for some ideas)

https://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/10-best-preschool-board-games/

Manipulative

  • blocks, Duplos, Legos, Lincoln logs
  • nature tools: sticks, rocks, shells
  • puzzles
  • dexterity toys (shape sorters, lacing, stringing beads, nuts & bolts, stacking, latching & connecting)

Active

  • balls (try an indoor bowling game)
  • trikes, low-riders & wagons
  • sand toys
  • trucks & cars

Make~Believe

  • puppets, dolls, action figures, stuffed animals
  • costumes & dress-up
  • play kitchens, fire stations, school, stores, eateries, health clinics

Creative

  • art supplies: glue, crayons, paints, paper, scissors, colored chalk, play dough
  • musical instruments (click on the link below for DIY ideas)

http://redtri.com/homemade-instruments/slide/6

Need a few  story “script” ideas ? 

BLB Shop has a collection of ready-to-use story scripts you can use while interacting with your child & her/his toys:

Toy~Telling Tales

Click on the link below to check it out.

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/shop/blb-press-writing-collection/toytelling-tales-scripts/

 Pardon My Wordiness

 Dear Reader:

This  post began as a 5000 word “tome” (YIKES). So I thought dividing it into 2 separate blogs would be an easier-on-the-eyes thing to do for a more enjoyable read.

Part 2 of the “I AM FOUR!” post discusses how to promote  Reading & Writing skills with your Pre-Schooler. It, too, is filled with lots of resources , tools & tips.

See you there!

Bizzy Lizzy

 

Please share any accomplishments, questions, comments and/or concerns by filling out the Contact Me form below. You will NOT be subscribing to BizzyLizzyBiz. I look forward to hearing from you!

However if you wish to join the BLB Exclusive for additional  tips, ideas, updates & resources, please fill out the form below as a FREE Subscriber!

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Encouraging the Family Literacy Circle with Your Kindergartner’s Language Skills

Welcome to the Family Literacy Circle’s Kindergarten Series

This year is a HUGE one for your 5-year-old ! Kindergarten is one (yes, another one) of your child’s milestones. Many preparations for changes are needed for a successful launch into his/her first, big school year.

Five of the major Literacy Acts influencing this new Play are: Language Skills, Play Power, Choosing a School, Reading Skills , and Writing Skills. So, I am dividing this incredibly important year into a series of 5 separate blog posts.

You should listen to even the smallest voice; someday it could be the one that makes a difference. ~ Crystal Marcos

ACT ONE : Language Skills

Your lively, spirited, and VERY curious 5-year-old child is SO ready to embrace theEncouraging the Family Literacy Circle with Your Kindergartner's Language Skills wonders of the world !   Those tools s/he has so diligently been working on and with are beginning to show some mastery. Frustration levels are lessening and confidence levels are rising. S/he is even amazing him/herself. “Look what I can do !” & “Wanna see me……?!?” are  frequent expressions now.

Within just one year, from age 4 to age 5, s/he has experienced tremendous growth in his/her gross & fine motor skills (moving & grasping) , language skills (understanding & speaking), cognitive skills (thinking & learning), and social skills (feeling & relating).

Here are some “new ” Motor & Social Skill developments you might be seeing during this incredible year:

Gross Motor Skills

  •  throws a ball overhead
  • jumps over low objects
  • rides a 3 wheeler with skill
  • skips ~ a thrilling  moment
  • catches bounced balls ~ another thriller
  • can change the direction, speed & quality of movements

Fine Motor Skills

  • shows a right or left hand preference
  • controls & uses a fork & knife
  • dresses oneself with little help
  • can manage zippers & buttons
  • can lace shoes, but not tie yet
  • cuts on a line with scissors
  • uses pencils & crayons in a more exacting way

Social Skills

  • is eager to try new things & take risks
  • makes decisions for oneself
  • notices the feelings of others
  • likes to feel grownup, especially when relating to younger children
  • has a basic understanding of right & wrong
  • understands & respects rules
  • enjoys giving & receiving
  • wants to collect things
  • needs to have a “hide-away” place for alone time

Encouraging Your Child’s Motor & Social Skills

Tired 0r Bored? Blake-Meyer
Tired 0r Bored? Blake-Meyer

Iowa State University’s Extension & Outreach program suggests these teaching & learning opportunities:

Gross & Fine Motor Skills

  • using a broom
  • pouring from a pitcher
  • playing “Follow the Leader” with skipping, galloping, hopping
  • tossing a ball at a target
  • helping to ride a bicycle with training wheels. if your child expresses an interest
  • cutting out coupons

Social Skills

  • setting the family table
  • providing that comfortable “hide-away” place
  • helping him/her understand strong feelings
  • giving her/him words to cope with strong feelings
  • praising specific behaviors specifically

Loving & Learning Language (with Some Deletions)

Believe it or not, your 5-year-old can understand between 4000 & 5000 words AND will gain 3000 more words within the year. Many new words will be learned through new experiences with new books, particular areas of interest (animals, plants, community helpers), and category names (weather, planets, cooking).

S/he has a speaking vocabulary of between 2200 and 2500 words with few pronunciation or grammatical errors. S/he is constructing 5-8 word complex & compound sentences, including conditional “If” statements!

I know you might be thinking, “Do we even say that many different words when speaking to him/her ?!?”

And now you’re saying, “Where did you hear / learn that word (or those words)?!?!?”

Your directed speech to your child may not contain a big variety of words, but s/he is listening to  and watching a LOT more language than your expressions from a LOT of different sources. Think ~ other people, young & old, everywhere…….

If your child  listens to what s/he hears,  understanding what is being said may, or may not be part of his/her language experience. Remember spelling certain words around certain ears….. 

You’ll know what s/he knows as the words (like them or not) come tumbling out of your “babe’s mouth”……

The Difference Between Understanding & Speaking Skills

Understanding Language Skills

  • follows 3-step directions without cues*
  • makes sense of what is said at home & at school (most of the time)
  • comprehends short stories &  answers question with accuracy

*Problems with Following Directions? Check out Meeting the Following Directions Challenge in my Resource Library : https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/meeting-following-directions-challenge/

Speaking Language Skills

  • speaks in multiple sentences at a time
  • enjoys conversations/dialogues with adults
  • likes to tell stories, riddles & jokes
  • will argue, debate & occasionally bargain
  • makes direct requests, using cause & effect reasoning

A major perk at this time of your child’s speech & language development is his/her ability learn a second or third language ! This will improve how quickly your child understands and, then, applies new information as well as using it in creative ways.

Encouraging Your Child’s Language Skills

Using 5 Senses for Language-Abigail Keenan
Using 5 Senses for Language -Abigail Keenan

During the last 5 years (and even before that- in utero), you have been engaging & interacting with your child. This is why his/her language skills are developing so nicely.

The “Ages & Stages” content for a 5-year-old in  Iowa State University’s Extension & Outreach program and I suggest continuing your productive work with these teaching &  learning opportunities. They will encourage your child’s   language growth  in  listening, understanding & speaking :

Listening & Understanding Skills

  • talk with your child as s/he learns & practices new tasks
  • ask your child to create new & different endings to familiar stories
  • help your child memorize his/her address & phone number
  • discuss community helpers & their jobs
  • have your child give you directions on how to do something

Speaking Skills

  • ask your child to tell you a story
  • encourage your child to recount an  adventure and/or outing
  • urge your child to use her/his 5 senses when describing an experience and/or object
  • engage your child in a conversation using questions
  • have conversations that promote your child’s curiosity

Carrie Clark, a speech pathologist, has LOTS of wonderful resources, tips, ideas & games on her website to promote your child’s growth & development in her/his language skills. Click on this link: https://www.speechandlanguagekids.com/

Speaking of Language & Literacy….

Understanding and using language to speak are building blocks for the reading component of Literacy. The beginning skills included in Phonological Awareness are followed closely by Phonemic Awareness and, then, Phonics.

Sound like the same stuff???

They are related, but skill specific. (See “Phonology, Phonemes & Phonics….Oh My !” in Reading & Writing with Your I Am Four !) Click on the link: https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/building-reading-writing-skills-with-your-preschooler/

During your child’s 4th year, s/he really showed an enjoyment for rhyme (can, fan, man, pan, ran) and alliteration (Freddy found forty fossils).

Between 5 & 6 years old, s/he can learn to:

  • recognize and produce rhyming words: bug, hug &_______?
  • clap and count syllables: cat (1), rabbit (2)
  • blend a beginning sound with a rime:  /m/ /at/ (mat)
  • identify a beginning sound: in “dog” /d/

This last component bridges into the Phonemic Awareness realm of  The 41 English Sounds. More on the Land of Phonemes the Family Literacy Circle post for age 6.

“J” Is the First Sound in ………….

 Starts with a J-Anissa Thompson
Starts with a J-Anissa Thompson

Wondering how  your child’s Phonological Awareness skills are progressing?

Jen, a K-12 Reading specialist, & Kathi, a K-6 Literacy coach are “hellotwopeasinapod”. They have combined their expertise and graciously freebied a great Phonological Awareness Assessment, which, also, tests Phonemic Awareness. This diagnostic will help you identify what your child’s skills are.

This verbal & audio assessment comes with teacher directions and is aligned with reading curriculum expectations. It  includes rhyme, syllable counts, & Phoneme objectives. Use it as a discovery tool every few months to help you & your child know which skills are mastered and which skills need review.

Click on this PDF link below for this thorough diagnostic tool:

https://www.sess.ie/sites/default/files/Temp_Upload_Files/2014-1/8%20Pg%20PhonologicalAwarenessAssessmentAFoundationalReadingSkillsDiagnosticTool.pdf

Remember Phonemic Awareness is the ability to hear & manipulate individual sounds. Your child may not be ready to distinguish, identify & play with all 41 sounds yet, but s/he will as the year progresses.

  Phonological Awareness Skills Teaching Sequence

Language & Speech research agree on the following recommended order for teaching children these skills. The latter parts of the skill sequence are the beginnings of Phonemic Awareness. Dr. Rhea Paul, an expert in Psycho-linguistics, has published many books in this field. Here are her recommendations:

  1. Rhyming words
  2. Dividing words into syllables
  3. Combining syllables into words
  4. Identifying words with the same beginning sound
  5. Identifying words with the same ending sound
  6. Counting the individual sounds in words
  7. Identifying the different sounds in words
  8. Blending individual sounds into words
  9. Manipulating sounds in words
  10. Identifying the sounds each letter makes

This may all “sound” like a bunch of “hair-splitting mumbo-jumbo” to you, but being able to play with   word sounds  is a critical part of how your child will make sense of the words s/he is reading.

Teaching your child these skills doesn’t need to be a “sit down and do” affair. Informal, everyday, anywhere practice is a very productive way for learning the sounds of words. Oral interactivity is the only material needed.

Okay….So, Where & When Do I Teach These Skills?

Sounds of Ball-Baphael Biscaldi
Sounds of Ball-Baphael Biscaldi

You can practice Phonological Awareness skills with your child while standing in a line, sitting in a waiting room, shopping for groceries, driving in the car, watching your child bathe, picnicking  in the park, eating meals/snacks, reading books, looking at environmental print, reading cereal or juice boxes, playing in the pool, and/or walking the dog.

And How Do I Teach These Skills?

Carrie Clark, the speech pathologist @speechandlanguagekids offers some tips and ideas:

Rhyming words : point out rhyming words when reading rhyming books; make up rhyming word lists together

Dividing words into syllables : clap, stomp, jump & count syllables together and/or alone

Combining syllables into words : say syllables of words with pauses in between & ask your child to put them together to make the word; start with 2 syllables

Identifying words with the same beginning sound : help your child come up with a list of words with the same beginning sound (like in his/her name or favorite toy)

Identifying words with the same ending sound : help your child come up with a list of words with the same ending sound (like in his/her name or favorite toy)

Counting the individual sounds in words : start with a short word (dog) & divide the words, slowly,  into its individual sounds (d…o…g);  ask your child to count the different sounds

Identifying the different sounds in words : have your child choose a word, divide it into each sound, and repeat it to you

Blending individual sounds into words : say the separate sounds of a simple word (c….a….t) & ask your child to say the word

Manipulating sounds in words : remove the first letter of a word ( say the word “cup” without the “kah” sound); substitute letters in words (take off the “m” in “mop” & put in “t” to make the word……”top”)

Identifying the sounds each letter makes : reverse sound and letter (what letter has the sound “muh” / what sound does the letter “t” make); point out letters & print in books and everywhere

Click on Carrie Clark’s website link (speechandlanguagekids) found in the Speaking Skills section of “Encouraging Your Child’s Language Skills” for more tips & ideas.

 

I hope you found some useful Language Skill tips & strategies to help you & yours prepare for this eventful step in your family’s lives. Let me hear how you are ….

Any questions &/or comments?  Just fill in the Contact Me form below……(and she’s still talking…..). You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

Copyright©2018BizzyLizzyBiz

 

Encouraging the Family Literacy Circle with Your Kindergartner’s Play Power

And Now for the Second Part of the Family Literacy Circle’s Kindergarten Series…

Play continues to be a significant part of your child’s growth & development.   Free Play, which is highly recommended by brain & child experts as well as children themselves and  Pretend Play, which is the natural-occurring form  of daily learning, are both important parts influencing the Brain’s wiring for Thinking & Learning skills as well as Creative & Social skills.

Even the toys, or tools, your child chooses to include in his/her play are essential. They influence creativity & imagination everyday.

ACT TWO : Play Power

Free Play, Toys as Tools, and Pretend Play all are important parts of FLC K Play Poweryour 5-year-old’s ability to problem solve, brainstorm & understand her/his immediate world as well as explore & discover new & different ones.

You can encourage how your child participates in & learns from these ongoing  adventures in a variety of ways.

Guidance without too much interference will strengthen in your child’s decision-making abilities, confidence & independence.

Of course, there will be times when issues of safety (and sanity ) have definite boundaries…. I mean, risk-taking has its limits in the REAL world…..

 Yes, Your 5 Year Old Is A BRAINIAC !

Teach a child how to think, not what to think. ~ Sidney Sugarman

Her/his brain is almost the size of an adult’s. It will continue to develop for the next 20 years. And just a “heads-up”…. you’re in for some REAL brain-wave excitement in about  10 years time….

Some these Cognitive, or Thinking & Learning Skills your child may be displaying are:

  • creating more imaginative ways to complete a task
  • asking more analytical questions while weighing the choices
  • understanding & using concepts like: big, bigger & biggest; first, middle & last; yesterday, today & tomorrow; first, then & next; more, less, same; before & after; above & below
  • asking & answering a variety of questions, including “how many”
  • inventing games with simple rules
  • identifying basic colors of blue, yellow, red, green & orange
  • beginning to understand how to sort & classify objects by size, shape or type
  • showing interest in cause & effect

Promoting Your Child’s Brain Growth & Development

Your continued interaction with your child, not only strengthens brain cell connections, but, also, builds skills in language, cognition & socialization as  well as self-help skills. Specifically:

  • Encourage independent problem solving; however make suggestions & decide on solutions together
  • Suggest your child use all 5 senses for more in-depth observations
  • Allow for an  extra “get ready” window to promote independence during time-sensitive preparations 
  • Promote Literacy through drawings, pictures & lots of questions
  • Make sure your child plays OUTSIDE a lot, especially with other children because, yes, s/he is preferring activities that involve others

Free Play and The Brain

When my children become wild and unruly, I use a nice safe playpen. When they’re finished, I climb out. ~ Erma Bombeck

Free Play-Justin Young
Free Play-Justin Young

Whether alone in her/his “hide-away” place or playing with peers, child development and brain experts agree on the significant power of free, unstructured play.

During free play, children express their emotions & feelings, which helps them to identify who they  are.

Unorganized play without lots of rules  promotes the development and growth of creativity, flexibility , and adaptation to future challenges.

Sergio Pellis, a neuroscientist from Alberta, Canada, observed that “the brain rewires itself under the positive stress of play, as children figure out how to navigate the world and each other.”

As part of a peer-play group, children learn to share, resolve conflicts, make decisions, and be assertive.

“If You Play with Me, I’ll Be Your Best Friend….”

Children Play Together-Ed Gregory
Children Play Together-Ed Gregory

Your 5-year-old wonder has moved quite comfortably into the Social stage of play partnered with the Expressive stage of play. S/he enjoys playing with others in his/her age group, seeking and creating opportunities to engage in this type of play.

S/he is interested in exploring new playgrounds, parks and friends’ houses. Community play-spaces can have a positive effect on youngsters, making them feel more connected to their neighborhoods.

Swinging on playground swings & trying out new jungle gyms are especially enjoyable to your 5-year-old. You may notice her/him initiate conversations & play in a familiar way with other children, even though they’ve never met.

Free, physical play is SO important for your child’s development of his/her body awareness. It stimulates growth  as well as strengthens her/his fine & gross motor skills. S/he may bring toys to the play area and invite some peers to play with them. Together, of course !

YAY ! What A FUN Toy !

Creating A Toy-Emma Roorda
Creating A Toy-Emma Roorda

Your child’s toys should  stimulate & engage his/her imagination, communication, collaboration, creativity, and cognition, as well as her/his gross & fine motor skills.

You’ve heard the saying, “Necessity is the mother of invention”. It may have been created while watching children at play. Believe me when I tell you, I have seen & heard children create amazing worlds with little and/ or nothing but their incredible  imaginations, a few pebbles, sticks, leaves, and a pile of dirt……

So, What Are Some Brain~Food Toys ?

Open-ended toys, or play tools can used in many, many ways, depending in your child’s imagination or learning-needs.

Here are a few ideas child development experts suggest for your child’s growth in these areas:

Games

  • board games for pre-readers, like Chutes & Ladders, Connect Four
  • card games, like Uno, Go Fish, Old Maid
  • dominoes
  • memory & match games
  • puzzles with 15-20 pieces

Construction

  • large & small wooden/plastic blocks
  • Duplos
  • Lincoln logs
  • tinker toys

Arts & Crafts

  • play-dough & clays
  • scissors & glue
  • pencils. crayons, washable markers & watercolors
  • drawing & construction papers

Outdoor

  • jump ropes
  • high bouncing ball (utility rubber ball)
  • wagon
  • 3-wheeler
  • bicycle with training wheels

Dramatic & Pretend

  • puppets, dolls, stuffed animals
  • action & animal figures (Play-mobiles)
  • trucks, cars, train sets/race tracks
  • pretend walkie-talkies, phones & cameras
  • dress-up clothes & costumes
  • play tools
  • LARGE cardboard boxes

I know I repeat myself, but at my Home Day School, I observed my children create everything from blocks, rocks & sticks. And there were HUGE crates of toys readily available in their playroom !

Powerful Pretend Play

The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge, but imagination. ~ Albert Einstein

A Castle of the Imagination
A Castle of the Imagination

At the age of 5, your child is becoming more & more project-minded. S/he is planning play scenarios that include buildings, different roles, materials & tools with the drawings to implement them. A script may not be in writing, but the appropriate dialogue is in place…..with assignments  for each person, animal & object.

Not only are your child’s Pretend Play plans “elaborate”, they will be enacted for long periods of time with new (and improved) details added each time.

Feel like your child is ready to try  some new & different Pretend Plays ?  Visit my Resource Library for a Pretend Play website collection: Pretend Play Power : 8 Helpful Websites.

Or click on the link below:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/8-helpful-pretend-play-websites/

How You Can Contribute to Your Child’s Pretend Play

In The Play Kitchen-Shlomaster
In The Play Kitchen-Shlomaster

During Pretend Play, especially with others, your child is engaging in problem solving and building new understandings about the world , other people & oneself. New ideas are tested, many questions are asked (and some answered), and discoveries through exploration are numerous.

Although your 5-year-old has some definite ideas & plans regarding his/her Pretend Play, you can make some “suggestions” on what s/he might want to include into the setting. Ask questions, like “How will you….., What if the……, When will you….., Where are the……?” to promote details, cause/effect and expansion.

Six (or Seven) Simple Pretend Plays

As children we LOVED to play House, Mommy, Daddy, Baby, Cook, etc. Dressing up in our parents’ old clothes & accessories, including humongous shoes delighted us for hours, days, months, and, yes, years.

You might like to view a collection of 6 Simple Pretend Play ideas in a quick-read, table format, so I cheerfully created one (LOVE those info-tables). I included materials you will find around the house in the attic, basement, recycle bin or closets; at yard sales (gold mines); or neighborhood discount stores.

Six (or Seven) Simple Pretend Play Scenarios & Material Lists

SCENARIO
OR
ENVIRONMENT
LARGE-SIZED ITEMSMEDIUM-SIZED ITEMSSMALL-SIZED ITEMSCLOTHING & LINENS
Housebroom, mop, vacuum. ironing board, lawnmower, rake, washing machine, dryer, clothes baskettrash and/or leaf bags, feather duster, clothesline, cleaning spray bottles, cleaning caddy, phone, storage binsiron, cleaning & yard gloves, clothespins, drinking water bottle, message pad/pencil, small clipboards for listskerchief, cap, cleaning rags, sponges, laundry
Nurserycradle/crib, highchair, baby carrier, stroller, bathing tub, changing tabledolls, cuddly toys, diaper bag. storage binsbottles, rattles, chew toys, tub toys, board booksdoll clothes, diapers, wash & burb cloths, blankets, baby pillow
Kitchenstove/oven, sink, fridge, table, chairs, cabinet/shelves for kitchen stuffpots/pans, dishes,bowls,cups, mixing bowls, colander, dish rack, cookbooks, clipboards, storage bins cooking & eating utensils, food pictures, play fruits & veggies, play canned & boxed foodapron, wash cloths, dish towels, napkins, tablecloth, place-mats
People's Health Clinic
&
Vet's Office/Clinic
table & chairs, pet carriersscale,clipboards, medical bag, patients:dolls,stuffed animals, storage bins medical gloves, medical tools: stethoscope, thermometer, syringe, reflex hammer, bandages, gauze, band-aids, cotton ballslab coat, wash clothes, blankets, towels
Construction Site
wagon, table & chairs, trucks, earth movershardhats,tool box, shovels, clipboards, storage binstools: hammer, saw, screwdrivers, ruler, t-square, measuring tape, nuts, bolts,, screws, nails, vices, paper/pencils, phone, ropes, chains, safety goggleskerchief, boots, vests, work gloves, toolbelt
Restauranttables, chairs, stools, menu board, kitchen-to-server window, cash registerdishes, bowls, cups,vases & flowers, order wheel, trays, bus tub, storage bins eating utensils, play food, salt/pepper shakers, sugar & creamerpackets, ketchup/mustard containers, play money, order tickets/pencils, small clipboard, clothespins, phone, calculator, to-go bagsaprons, table settings: napkins, place-mats, tablecloths

To promote additional Literacy skills in these 6 Pretend Plays,  I created signs, bin labels, hat symbols, forms and lists to accompany each scenario. They are gathered together in a DIY Collection Manual : Prop~Templates for 6 Simple Pretend Plays complete with Construction Instructions as well as Tips & Idea Suggestions. Here’s the link to this product in BLB Shop:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/shop/blb-press-writing-collection/simple-pretend-plays-proptemplates/

 

I hope you found some useful Play Power tips & strategies  to help you & yours prepare for this eventful step in your family’s lives. Let me hear how you are ….

Any questions &/or comments?  Just fill in the Contact Me form below……(and she’s still talking…..). You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a  FREE subscriber!

Copyright©2018BizzyLizzyBiz

 

Choosing A School for Your Kindergartner : Learning & Teaching Styles

This is Part Three of Your Family’s Literacy Circle Kindergarten Series

Preparing your 5-year-old for Kindergarten can be a daunting task. There are so many questions and concerns parents have regarding the  groundwork needed for your child to enter in this totally new learning environment. Academic & social skill abilities usually top the list of worries. 

Is my child really ready to enter Kindergarten?!?

ACT THREE: Learning & Teaching Styles

When one teaches, two learn. ~ Robert Heinlein

Hopefully, this post will address some of your concerns. It explores the different Learning Styles of your child as well as the variety of Teaching Styles available to help you & yours decide on the best learning environment for your Kindergartner.

Your Five-Year-Old Wonder Child

Choosing a School for Your KindergartnerRemember last year…around 12 months ago… when your child was 4?  Toddlerland  was in the distance with fewer & fewer bouts of frustration….S/he was building  & planning & talking about it….a lot, but, still experienced some….well, you know.

Did you notice the closer s/he came to his/her 5th birthday, some pretty big changes were beginning to occur? Or should I say evolve? Like a larger understanding & speaking vocabulary? Completing tasks without being told and, maybe, in a “different” way? Longer focus & concentration? Some serious debating going on?

 Hmmm… let’s see what else you’ve observed in this young child, who is now only a baby to you and anyone else your age….

Does your child:

  • show eagerness to learn new things?
  • like to solve problems & puzzles in creative ways?
  • use her/his imagination when doing most activities?
  • ask a lot of  “analytical ” questions?
  • consider a variety of options before making a decision?
  • enjoy challenges that require “long-term” thinking?
  • like to participate in a variety of new experiences?
  • prefer activities that involve other children?

S/he is DEFINITELY a 5-year-old, bursting with exuberant enthusiasm and an abundance of creativity.

Kind of….weird…and oh, so, refreshing…Not that this stage of growth & development doesn’t come with its own set of challenges…. But you got this! Your parenting teaching skills are preparing for this next HUGE adventure…..

I Got This, You Say ????

If your child is displaying some, if not all, of those above mentioned characteristics, here are some of the learning skills with confidence building blocks you have successfully and diligently put into play:

  • given her/him chances to make simple choices
  • helped him/her complete something new without too much interference
  • fostered creativity with new experiences with tools & adventures
  • exhibited patience during your child’s activity involvements
  • recognized her/his achievements
  • encouraged his/her progress

PBS Parents’ Child Development Tracker/Approaches to Learning offers a more in-depth study of your 5-year-old’s growth in these areas. Click on the link below:

http://www.pbs.org/parents/childdevelopmenttracker/five/approachestolearning.html

Need a few more ideas? Check out my 10 Amazing, Info-Packed Websites for Parenting & Child Development in the BLB Resource Library. Just click on the link below:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/10-amazing-info-packed-lwebsites-parenting-child-development/

Your Child’s Learning Style

5 Senses Learning-Caroline Hernandez

I recently (today) read an article in my daily feed regarding people’s learning styles. It was debunking the theory, stating there was no significant data to support using this as a teaching tool ~ even though 90% of teachers continue to inventory their students as a basis for diversifying their lessons……

As an educator, I tried to design my lessons with the 3 major Learning Styles in mind. However, I found most Early & Primary students are Hands-On, or Kinesthetic, learners. Most students showed a preference for listening or seeing. Again, a lot of Visual learners.

Even as learning teachers going to workshops/ professional development seminars, we preferred “Make & Take” sessions instead of lectures with power points. The “hand-outs” served as our “hands-on” tools, which we used for…..

What IS My Child’s Learning Style ?

Anywho ~ there are numerous informal inventories you can do to help you “discover” your child’s Learning Style as you prepare for his/her “Going-To-Kindergarten” journey. Your observations are probably enough, but here are a few ideas I gathered from a variety of simple surveys:

My child learns best when:

  • watching someone else
  • listening to someone
  • touching or building

When in a new place, s/he :

  • notices the people & sights
  • listens to the new & different sounds
  • moves around a lot, wiggles & taps

While waiting somewhere, s/he:

  • looks around, reads or doodles
  • talks or listens to others
  • walks around, touching things

My child enjoys:

  • reading & drawing
  • talking & singing
  • running & building

When I read to him/her, s/he:

  • loves to point to & talk about the pictures
  • repeats the words I am saying
  • fidgets & squirms

S/he remembers things more easily when:

  • pictures are involved
  • verbal repetitions are made
  • movement is present

When my child writes or draws, s/he:

  • worries how it looks
  • talks to self
  • pushes hard on the pencil/crayon

S/he needs a learning environment that is:

  • free from clutter & lots of movement
  • free from a lot of noise
  • free from sitting still too long

Now, your child probably does ALL of these things at some time or another. Think in terms of “most of the time”.  First choice is a Visual Learner, second choice is an Auditory Learner & choice three is a Kinesthetic Learner.

Want a few more characteristics? Visit the link below for Dr. Molly Pennington’s 2015 article:

https://www.noodle.com/articles/how-to-identify-your-child-learning-style

Does My Child’s Learning Style Equal Intelligence?

First of all ~ Major NO !

Explore & Discover-Dimitri Svetsikas
Explore & Discover-Dimitri Svetsikas

Intelligence is one’s ABILITY to learn, solve and/or create. Learning Style is the WAY one prefers to learn, solve and/or create. Some experts say these are “personality traits” instead of learning styles and intelligence. Your call. 

I think being aware of people’s “learning” preferences is an effective way to teach AND learn. I wonder if that’s a smart, er-intelligent way to approach life…..

As a matter of discussion, there are “multiple intelligences”, according to several experts.

In particular, Howard Gardner’s Frames of the Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligence, states there are at least 7 (8, if you count Naturalistic).  SOOO, how about a Table of these “Smarts” & their characteristics?!?

Gardner's 8 Multiple Intelligences

Intelligence TypeThinking ProcessPreferencesLearning Tools
Word Smart: Verbal-Linguistic words & languageread, write, tell stories, speak other languagesbooks, writing tools, journals, word games, puns, tongue twisters, multimedia
Art Smart: Visual-Spatial images & spacedraw, paint, photography, sculpt, puppetry, daydreamart, mazes, puzzles, museums, maps, charts, diagrams, videos
Math Smart: Logical Mathematical
logic & reasoningnumbers, science, exploration, patterns, codespuzzles, investigations, experiments, mysteries, brain teasers, calculators, analogies, planetariums
Music Smart: Musical-Rhythmic
melodies & rhythmsing, whistle, hum, tap, listen to music, play an instrumentconcerts, multimedia, rhythm, rhyme, poetry, songs, recordings
Body Smart: Kinesthetic-Bodily
physical sensations & movementdance, run, jump, build, touch,role-play drama, athletics, tactile experiences, manipulatives
Nature Smart: Naturalist
connections with natureplants, animals,rocks, nature connections, outdoorsdata collection, exploration, classify natural objects, natural materials, growing things, animal care
People Smart: Interpersonal
social interactionsfriends, social events, discussions, interviews cooperative learning, board games, peer tutoring, clubs, group games, phones, multimedia, social networks
Self Smart: Intrapersonal
deep inside selfset goals, meditate, dream, quiet time, hobbies, reflection secret places, solo time, self-paced projects, journals, books, creative materials

PS Think you are smarter than you thought?!? Me, too!!!

Speaking of Brain Waves

Remember those Right & Left Brain choices discussed in “Our Brain” ?

See https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/nurturing-literacy-with-your-infant-7-12-months/

There are a few strategies you can put in place to assist with your child’s learning skills. You may need to mix it up depending on the subjects s/he is trying to understand.

Left Brain Needs

  • a quiet, well-lit space with an individual desk
  • structured, independent work
  • step-by-step with exact details
  • some assistance with defining Main Ideas & Inferences

Right Brain Needs

  • a softly-lit group work space
  • open-ended, group work
  • graphic organizers
  • manipulatives & experimentation

And there are a FEW things your 5-year-old needs to know how to do before entering a Kindergarten classroom that have little to do with his/her smarts…..

Ready (or Not) for Kindergarten Class

You don’t remember the times your parent held your handle bars. You remember the day s/he let go. ~ Lenore Skenazy

Creativity Tools-Mike Fox

If you enter “Kindergarten Readiness Skills” in a search engine, you will receive a LOT of responses. My advice ~ choose one written by a Kindergarten teacher. S/he not only is a voice of experience, but tips & strategies will, also,  be included on how to fill in some gaps your child may have before the BIG day.

So, some of the lists are quite lengthy…. Education.com lists 10 Kindergarten Readiness Skills with some tips & strategies.  I’ve combined it with other ideas, which you can access in the BLB Resource Library. Just click on the link below for Kindergarten Readiness Skills: A Parent & Child Checklist:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/kindergarten-readiness-skills-a-parent-child-checklist/

In addition to a healthy number of Literacy skills your 5-year-old needs in preparation for Kindergarten, s/he will be, well, bombarded with a KAZILLION classroom & school routines.  To be fair, these can change according to school district policy, campus policy and/or teacher preferences. 

Karen Jones, an elementary educator with 12 years experience & a parent came up with this lengthy, but accurate inventory of “Routines & Procedures”. Sit down with a snack & a tall drink while you check out this list…..

http://www.mrsjonessclass.com/2014/06/routines-routines-routines.html

Ready For Kindergarten ?

One of the most popular  Primary classroom activities with children is the Daily Calendar. Students gather as a group around a colorful board to interactively participate while learning some  life skill concepts, such as time, weather & vocabulary. I have created one for you & yours ~ My Calendar Corner ~ in BLB’s Shop. Just click on the link below & let me know what you think:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/shop/blb-press-writing-collection/my-calendar-corner-daily-prek-thru-3rd-grade-literacy-activities/

How to Choose A School for Your Kindergartner

The best teachers are those who show you where to look, but don’t tell you what to see. ~ Alexandra K. Trenfor

Playscape- Noah Hurricane
Playscape- Noah Hurricane

As your child’s first teacher, you are very aware of how s/he learns, successfully. Kindergarten is a critical year and can set the stage for many years to come. Expectations & curriculum may vary with school/district policy, but most schools, regardless of classification, want your child reading, writing & problem solving with math computations before entering First Grade.

Here are a few of the  10 Factors to consider when selecting a school for your child, according to publicschoolreviews/2017:

Finding a Good Fit

  • Will the school provide a specific, rigorous course of study ?
  • Will the school accommodate my child’s learning style and/or special needs ?
  • What is the level of social contact with peers ?
  • How do scheduling & extracurricular activities fit with our family’s ?

Choosing a Focus

  • Does the school offer a second language study ?
  • Does the school offer opportunities in the Fine and/or Performing Arts ?
  • How important is Science & Math ?
  • Is new & innovative Technology used as part of the curriculum ?

 Looking At Basic Campus Effectiveness

  • High expectations
  • Great teachers & staff
  • Engaged, visible children
  • Rigorous curriculum
  • Active parent participation

Visiting the School

  • Meet teachers, staff & principal
  • Talk to other parents & students
  • Check out a PTA meeting
  • Ask questions

Have A Few More Questions ?

Speaking of questions, readingrockets.org has an article, “Four Steps to Selecting a School for Your Child”, written by the US Department of Education & other websites offering an EXTENSIVE list of questions to address your concerns. You can even download a booklet. Connect with the link below:

 http://www.readingrockets.org/article/four-steps-selecting-school-your-child

So, What Are the Choices ?

Free Play-Jessica Tootoo
Free Play-Jessica Tootoo

There are lots of options including Homeschools, Private Schools & Online Public Schools. The options I will offer in this post are Neighborhood Public Schools & Alternative, or Non-Traditional Schools, which can be considered private.

As an parent & educator, I found the regular availability of Free Play, or Recess was just as important to learning as Nutrition & Academics. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, as well as other studies, children, who had indoor or outdoor Free Play/Recess as a regular part of their school day:

  • were more attentive & more productive in the classroom
  • developed the thinking skills that are positively linked to learning & academic performance
  • created fantasies to help them cope with difficult situations
  • provided stress-relief

There are several types of Neighborhood Public Schools to consider:

  • the one around the corner or across the street from your home that your child(ren) can walk or ride their bikes to
  • a Charter School that may offer an unique, smaller class-size, learning environment and are free from  many traditional public school regulations
  • a Magnet School that exists outside of “zoned school boundaries”, but is part of the local public school system with alternative methods of instruction

Read below for several other  Alternative Schools with unique approaches to educating minds.

Is A Non~Traditional School Right for My Child ?

Several effective methods of teaching do NOT include lectures, homework, report cards or formal assessments. I have only listed these 3 : Montessori, Steiner,  and Reggio Emilia, but there are more.

Montessori

The goal of early childhood education should be to activate the child’s own natural desire to learn. ~ Maria Montessori, M.D.

  • Children select learning activities independently each day.
  • Learning tools are tactile.
  • Teachers observe, not direct.
  • Classes  are grouped for 3-year movement.
  • Methods are usually found in preschool & elementary schools.
  • Several hundred US public schools utilize Montessori practices.

You can learn more by clicking on the link below:

  https://amshq.org/Montessori-Education/Introduction-to-Montessori

 

Waldorf

The need for imagination, a sense of truth, and a feeling of responsibility – these three forces are the very nerve of education. ~ Rudolf Steiner, founder

  • Children are prepared for “living”, emphasizing creative expression with social & spiritual values .
  • Learning tools are :(4-6) sensory-based, (7-14) creativity-based, (15-18) structure & social-based.
  • Teacher & curriculum- directed.
  • Classes  are grouped for 7-year movement.
  • Methods are found in K-12 Waldorf schools.
  • There are eight hundred Waldorf schools internationally.

You can learn more by clicking on the link below:

 https://www.waldorfeducation.org/waldorf-education

 

Reggio Emilia

Children need the freedom to appreciate the infinite resources of their hands, their eyes and their ears, the resources of forms, materials, sounds and colors. ~ Loris Malaguzzi, founder 

  • Children self-direct a variety of creative projects.
  • Learning tools are art & discovery-based.
  • Teachers guide, not instruct, without set lesson plans.
  • Classrooms mimic home environments.
  • Methods are used for teaching children ages 3-6 .
  • Schools all over the world utilize this inquiry-based practice.

You can learn more by clicking on the link below:

 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reggio_Emilia_approach

Need More Educational Options Info ?

There are other traditional & non-traditional school options available for you to think about. Educational World. com can help you with this.

Click on the link below for multiple articles, reviews, resources & links regarding teaching approaches, philosophies & practices:

http://www.educationworld.com/preservice/learning/methods.shtml

You, Your Child & School

Kindergarten School-HPGuesen
Kindergarten School-HPGuesen

As an educator in Primary & Intermediate classrooms, I discovered one of the most important ways to ensure a student’s success was the parent’s involvement with his/her child’s school activities & academic engagement. Putting habits and expectations in place during  this first year will lay the foundation for self-motivation and responsibility in the future (until adolescence…..). You will see a resurgence, usually, during Senior-itis & college, hopefully.

Your child will benefit by your involvement in his/her education at school. Send him/her ready for school by:

  • Making sure s/he is well-fed & rested
  • Checking s/he is dressed appropriately
  • Has the necessary school supplies
  • Has completed homework and/or projects

I created a mini~picture “Ready For School” poster help your Kindergartner each school morning & evening before. Post it at eye level in your child’s room or by the front door. Click on the link below to print the PDF:

K Ready for School Pic-List

Parent Involvement Strategies

Tiffani Chin, PhD, the founder of EdBoost & author of School Sense, suggests several  general strategies for parents to follow when becoming involved in your child’s education in school:

  The School

  • attend school events, like “Meet the Teacher”, Open House, festivals & fairs
  • visit the website
  • talk with teachers, counselors, administrators & staff
  • volunteer

School Is A Priority

  • check the backpack every day for school notes & correspondence
  • help with homework
  • visit your neighborhood library
  • attend educational events & places
  • go to conferences

Partner with The Teachers

  • ask how to help your child
  • voice your concerns about your child performance & behaviors
  • listen carefully & follow the advice
  • respond to notes, emails and/or phone calls
  • show you appreciate their efforts

The relationship between you, your child & school is best expressed as one of teamwork. Strengthening this bond tells your child his/her “work on the job” is important, meaningful & necessary.

Remember to keep the Family Literacy Circle alive & well as your child’s First classroom.  Read Your Educational Home Environment in BLB’s Resource Library by clicking on the link below:

https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/resources/your-educational-home-environment-activities-to-boost-your-childs-literacy-growth/

So, How Was Your Day At School ?

In spite of my child “doing nothing” at school everyday (because I always asked) for 12 years, or let’s just say the last 8 years of K~HS, he was able to graduate from college with honors and go on to graduate school…..

Fear not, Liz Evans @simplesimon&company offers some creative,  answerable questions  to ask your child each day after school. Click on the link below:

https://www.simplesimonandco.com/2014/08/25-ways-ask-kids-school-today-without-asking-school-today.html/

 AND… if and when Homework is involved……I created a a read with some Parent Involvement Strategies in Your Homework Help HOTLINE,  available in BLB’s Resource Library. Just click on the link below:

 https://www.bizzylizzybiz.com/blb-resource-library/homework-help-hotline-parent-involvement-strategies/

 

I hope this post has been helpful to you. These decisions can cause anxiety with some sleeplessness……

Let me know if you have any questions, concerns and/or additions you would like to see. Just fill in the Contact Me form below……(and she’s still talking…..). You will NOT be subscribing. 

Otherwise, fill in the BLB Exclusive form as a FREE subscriber!

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