Thursday, January 3, 2013

Brown Bear, Brown Bear: Recap

Well I tried the lesson plan with my 9 month old yesterday.  If you don't know what lesson plan I'm referring to check this post.  It was a learning experience mainly for me but also for her.  I wasn't quite sure what she would be able to do so I started letting her try like a big girl and then adapted it down to what she could do.  Now I need to warn you.  We have been out of town for two weeks visiting family for Christmas and New Year's.  Thus, my house is a disaster zone.  I tried to not capture the disaster that is my house but hey this is real life and I'm not going to clean up just for pretty pictures for the blog.  That is not realistic. Sometimes the messy house will just have to wait so we can have some fun! So please excuse the random stuff in the background.  Here is how it went.

I could have printed out a picture of a bear but I didn't have time so I whipped up this bad boy.  I started out by giving her  a brown crayon while I got the food materials and glue together.  I know she doesn't know what to do with crayons yet but I figured I would let her explore.  She got a couple of random strokes on the paper but she had no idea she did.
In the end she decided that it looked very yummy.
Next I gave her the nutmeg container to see if she would shake it because she likes to shake bottles.  No go.  I then tried putting the materials in shot glasses mini cups that I picked up at the grocery store because they looked like fun for her to play with and her physical therapist suggested them.  I put each of our four materials into their own mini cup.  So there was a shot of mini cup of nutmeg, cinnamon, chocolate sprinkles, and brown rice.  I tired to have her smell the nutmeg and cinnamon to start but she kept turning her head away.

I squirted some glue on the bear and spread it around with a sponge brush (You can get these at your local craft store for about 25 cents each!)
touching the glue
"helping" me spread the glue
Then I showed her the mini cup of nutmeg and sprinkled some on the bear to help get her started.  She was very into seeing what was in the cup. 

  Which she promptly dumped on her shirt.
yuuummmm smells like nutmeg
So we tried again with the cinnamon.  She dumped that too but some went on her high chair tray!  Wahoo!  So my little girl now smelled all yummy which she HATED.  She kept turning her nose up and was not happy.  I then gave her the chocolate sprinkles and brown rice.  She liked playing with those.  What you see on the bear was all done by me.  I was trying to show her what to do.  She did stick her hand on the food covered bear and played with the sprinkles and rice so I call that a success!   She explored the sprinkles and rice by picking them up, rolling them between her fingers, and getting her hands all sticky with glue.  She didn't know what to think of her sticky fingers.  Here she is exploring the materials and making funny faces because of the smell of the spices.

I wrote the letter B in the mess on her table since we
were exploring the color brown and bears and they start with B.
the end result.
At nine months old I can't expect much more but at least we tried! If she was a little bit older I think this would be a really successful project. It is such a great way to start conversations about things you can find around the house that are of a certain color.  Just exposing her to the vocabulary is important. She may not actually comprehend it but listening and exploring her world are the best ways for her to learn at the age.
I made sure to highly supervise her while we did this activity because I didn't want her eating any of it one because of her age and two because of the glue.  I was pleasantly surprised that the only thing she tried to eat was the crayon.  If you have an older child I suggest making sure you have enough brown sprinkles so they can try some.  I also suggest cooking some rice afterward so they can eat that too.  Heck, you could even make cookies with cinnamon and nutmeg if you feel up to it! I think we will try making another animal from the book every day this week.  I'm thinking black construction paper and white chalk for the sheep, feathers for the bird, and bubble wrap and green paint for the frog.   

We actually didn't have a chance to read the book this week until after the art project.  Sorry the picture is so bad, just a mama and a baby here so this is what you get when you prop a camera up on a toy next to you.  Oh yea and she has no shirt on because she reeked of nutmeg and she didn't like that smell so I took off her shirt.  We were already into the book and she was loving it so I didn't stop just for a shirt.  We are going to read the book every day this week.  Repetition is sooooo important for young kids.  It is how they learn!  So what may become boring for us is making their minds grow!  If you are into science then you know that repetition makes brain synapses get stronger (You have no idea how excited I am that I remember that from bio-psychology Sophomore year of college).

I read the book the normal way the first time.  Then she wanted to read it again so I said the color only as we turned each page.  Then we read it again and I said the animal name.  She wanted to read it a fourth time so I made the animal noises.  She really enjoyed looking at the last two pages.  The one with the kids and the summary page.  I just kept using descriptive words and pointing to the animals.  She really seemed to enjoy it.  I can't wait for her to start imitating the animal sounds and telling me the animal names and colors.  Then she could read the story to me!

All in all we spent about 15-20 minutes on this little lesson.  How did it go for you?  Anyone else have a child covered in spices? Anyone else looking around your house  and have no idea where to start in order to regain order?

If you need extension ideas check the lesson plan post.  If you want to get ready for the rest of the month check this post.


1 comment:

  1. Seriously neat, Megan! Love the results. (A for effort Miss Caroline!)