Friday, October 29, 2010

Learning by Heart – week 4

“The mother’s heart is the child’s schoolroom”
– Henry Ward Beecher

This was supposed to be our Review-and-Catch-Up Week (yes, in capital letters), so I didn’t have many activities planned.  I wanted to use the time to plan activities for the weeks to come, but that didn’t really happen.  I’m learning that it’s more normal to have things not work out as expected than it is to have things go according to plan. :)

I set out some easy, no-prep shelf activities for M to choose from throughout the week, giving myself a huge break from planning and prepping our normal variety of activities:

Top Shelf – Guidecraft Feel & Find, small set of Magz, and our Wedgits:shelf activities week4 (3)

Second Shelf – Lite Brite, Hammering Shapes, and a card game from M’s High Five magazine (on top of his work mat):shelf activities week4 (4)

Third Shelf – See & Spell, M’s Collage and Trace ABC Book, a whiteboard and a little whiteboard ABC book (Target Dollar Spot!):shelf activities week4 (5)

No photo of the bottom shelf – it held M’s Thomas the Train engines and track pieces, as well as his flannelboard sets which are there pretty much all the time. 

M chose each activity several times throughout the week, but the definite favorites were the Hammering Shapes and the Wedgits.  He worked very hard, with a specific design in mind, as he hammered in the little nails (more like tacks, definitely something that should be supervised, but lots of fun!).  shelf activities week4 (6)

He made this boat scene, with the moon rising at night and the sun setting (I’m just telling you what was told to me):shelf activities week4 (2)

The Wedgits are always a ton of fun, and M’s cousin S got in on the action too – she really loved them (despite the blank look on her face in this picture).  There’s a two year age difference between these two, so it’s good to know that they’ll still be interesting to M when he’s older!wedgits

I found an extra little fine motor activity for him at Target – these cute containers and some rub-on transfers (for scrapbooking or similar hobbies):shelf activities week4 (7)He really enjoyed decorating the little boxes with “tatoos”, and loved placing each one where he wanted it and then rubbing it on with the little craft stick.shelf activities week4 Those little fingers got a good workout!shelf activities week4 (1)
I learned this week that regardless of what I do or don’t do, M will learn.  In fact, it would take purposeful actions on my part to keep him from learning… he just learns.  That’s what he does.  When he is interested in something it’s almost impossible to keep him from learning.  This week, in which I did nothing in the way of preschool with him, he taught himself.  He taught himself all seven letters of his name and how to write them, using an uppercase ‘M’, then lowercase letters for the rest.  He also taught himself how to measure by building Wedgit towers and then measuring them with the little tape measure from my sewing basket.  Both of these things were initiated by him; he set out to learn how to do them, and mastered both skills by week’s end. 

He should be teaching me!

I guess he is. :)

To see some of our Halloween-themed activities, see this post from earlier this week.

I’m linking this post up to Preschool Corner and Weekly Wrap-Up; be sure to check them out!

Have a beautiful day! :)



  1. I totally agree! They are programmed to learn! Sometimes I need to get out of the way and just watch her grow!

  2. I also agree we would have to actively keep them from learning! I love that hammering toy.. do you know where you got it what it is called?

  3. For not really planning anything, this was a lot of creative stuff! Good job :)
    I like the little tubs with the rub on transfers. Great idea.

  4. Looks like fun! I'm stopping by from the Homeschool Creations link up!

  5. I have never seen hammering shapes before. They look like something a boy would love.

  6. I totally hear you when it comes to things NOT working out as being normal!

  7. I also love the hammering shapes and the transfer stickers...stopped by from weekly wrap-up...Now following!

    Forest Rose

  8. His boat scene is amazing! And yes, it's amazing to see what they learn, even without trying!

  9. It looks like you guys had a great week! :)

  10. I also have a 4 year old - great ideas! I'm going to some of them this week; I especially love the Leaf creatures! Thanks for sharing. I'm now following your blog.


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