We’re in M week on our Letter of the Week journey, but I’ll be honest: Travis was barely into anything I planned for the week. Not sure if it’s just that the words based around M fell flat, or because he’s a budding two-nager… But your child may love the activities we tried, so I’m including the hits and the misses below.
Music/Maracas: This was by far the highlight of the week, as Travis loves music. March with maracas in hand and you’ll have a merry good time! We wore ourselves out with high-knee marching and added in silly “mouth music” – what sounds could we make using just our mouths? We pretended to be trombones, clarinets, flutes, and more. Several great children’s songs play with this concept, using the mouth as an instrument; check out Fireworks from Music Together.
Mirror: There are many great mirror games you can play, including just pointing out body parts or trying on silly hats. I thought for sure Travis would love the taboo sensation of drawing on a mirror with a special dry-erase marker, tracing his “portrait,” but he lost interest very quickly.
Mittens: Teach the song The Three Little Kittens if your child doesn’t already know it. You can also squeeze in a little learning by attaching three kitten pictures to poster board, and making six cut-out mittens. Your child needs to assign two mittens to each cat to help the kittens find them again!
Museum: This word was the inspiration for our field trip of the week, taking Travis not to a children’s museum, but to a small local art museum. As we walked the gallery, I prompted him to guess what was happening in each painting. This game works especially well when people or animals are depicted. His favorite was a painting of waffles covered in jelly, which he thought some birds were going to come and eat. Even better, many museums often feature interactive exhibits. Travis spent 45 minutes painting at this digital paintbrush station!
Magnets: I left out all the toys we own that have magnets in any form – magnet blocks, magnetized puzzles, dinosaur magnets. It was a reminder to focus on some old favorites, but again Travis lost interest after a bit of play with each.
Moon: Cut three moons from craft foam – one crescent moon, one half moon, and one full moon – and attach to craft sticks. This is a fun way to talk about the phases of the moon, or to use as props while reading stories about the moon.
And our weekly extras…
Fine art: Aside from helping to color in monkey and mouse mask templates with crayons, Travis wasn’t into the art project I came up with for the week. I thought it would be fun to glue additional elements like whiskers to the masks, and then we glued them to popsicle sticks.
Food: We had yummy stuff to choose from this week – muffins and mangoes at breakfast, mushrooms with lunch (Travis’s favorite vegetable), and mac n cheese.
Books: Travis enjoyed Maisy Goes to the Museum by Lucy Cousins, the perfect read before our outing described above. We also read some classics: Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown and If you Give a Mouse a Cookie/ If you Give a Moose a Muffin by Laura Numeroff.
Songs: A good children’s song to play is The Bear Went Over the Mountain. (Take advantage of a mountain field trip if you live in a mountainous region!) Better yet, I left Mozart playing in the background most of the week! More on that below…
Math: Very briefly, I introduced Travis to the concept that a year has twelve months, by flipping through a calendar with him (Admittedly, he was more into the pictures of the dogs and cats).
You could also focus on the word match by having your child match up socks or winter gloves, but Travis lost interest in that task quickly.
What did Travis prefer to all these games I had planned? Well, he discovered my case of 170 Mozart CDs, and took them out and sorted them by color endlessly. So there you have it, we spent M week matching Mozart CDs… I guess it wasn’t a miss after all!