Although the kids go to preschool every morning, I also have a little homeschool project I am doing with them in the afternoons. We pick a theme every 2 weeks, take out a bunch of books from the library, most in Spanish, and I find activities and coloring sheets for the kids to do related to the theme. The idea is that the kids learn to speak more Spanish, learn different vocabulary related to different themes, and to just foster curiosity in learning.
- In this unit we measured and counted different body parts and talked about bigger/smaller, longer/shorter, wider/skinnier, taller/shorter.
- To learn about the different senses we played different games: we had a blindfolded taste test to explore bitter (unsweetened cocoa), sweet (candy), sour (lime wedges) and salty (chips). The kids loved this game, and decided they did not like bitter! They also looked in the mirror about their "papilas" (taste buds) and told me they both have a lot of papilas for candy:).
- We tested our sense of smell using onions, vanilla extract, vinegar, cinnamon, rubbing alcohol, coffee grounds, perfume, peanut butter, bananas, peppermint extract, and ginger all placed in empty spice containers with holes. The kids placed the smells they liked on green paper and then ones they didn't on red.
- We drew lots of self-portraits, traced our feet and hands and compared different toys to see which were bigger and smaller, and practiced writing our names and talking about where we are from.
- We had lots of physcial activity playing hide-and-seek using instruments, and using our sense of hearing to find each other (this was Maya's favorite). We made a huge obstacle course and talked about how exercise makes our muscles stronger. For Christmas the kids got "yoga pretzels," and it was fun to twist and contort into the different poses.
- Our songs were Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes, and If You’re Happy and You Know It.
Transportation: Very fun for Tonito, but the girls enjoyed it too! Trains, planes, and automobiles
- For math, we did some sorting of buckets of cars with different characteristics
- In science, Papi played with the kids making ramps to test which car was the fastest, slowest, which could go the farthest, how you could alter the height of the ramp to change the distance or speed of the car.
- When the kids took a bath, we tested our predeictions of "Float or Sink" with a load of household objects and toys. The kids then used aluminum pie tins as boats to see how many objects they could pile up before the boats sank.
- Some of our favorite books were Adventures of Maxi the Taxi Dog, Ox-Cart Man, How will we get to the Beach? and a lot of other books of fiction and nonfiction about fire trucks, helicopters, trains, trucks, police cars, boats, aircraft carriers, motorcycles, airplanes, cars, etc.
- We made little popsicle stick airplanes and then practiced flying them over, under, around, between, below, above, to the left and right, etc. One of the main purposes of this little homeschool project is to teach them to use more Spanish, so I am trying to use lots of activities that teach new vocab!