Thursday, October 9, 2008

Preschool Art Group

The theme for the day was geography with an emphasis on Christopher Columbus (who is honored in many North American countries this time of year).

Last week, I shared how out-of-control-excited Mr. Intensity was, when friends were here.  [Sunday he was very disruptive at church, both in Sunday school, as well as Jr. Church.  Both sets of teachers had to talk to us about his behavior!]  So, today I tried to coach him (before the kids arrived) to hop like a bunny when he felt excited.  It worked!!  On several occasions I saw him hopping!  I'm thankful for The Spirited Child book that has helped me see into my child's life.

Side note *I just have to share this:*  Last week, I was complaining to Hubby about Mr. Intensity's intense, and sometimes out-of-control behavior.  I tried to get Hubby to brainstorm with me as to how to help Mr. Intensity self-soothe, or calm himself.  I shared the following story - (scroll down to the rest of the art group pictures if you don't care about this parenting problem of mine.)

On Thursday two kids came over to play while their mom took the baby to the doctor.  I heard a loud "thump" like a slamming of a door (which is against the rules at our house.)  I waited a few seconds to react, to see if it was an accident.  The same noise came again from Mr. Intensity's room.  By the time I made it to the top of the stairs, I heard the same LOUD noise a third time.

Upon entering his room, I asked, "What was that loud noise?"

He says, "I didn't hear a loud noise."

"Really?!  I heard a very loud noise, like slamming of a door.  Did you slam the door?"


At this time, one of the other children piped up to say, "He was running across the room and throwing his body against the door."

What the heck is wrong with this child?!!

So, I'm telling Hubby this scenario and he replies, "I remember in the 7th grade, being so excited that I was around my friends, I would bang my book against my head.  It made a cool sound and it felt good."

ACK!!  I have 8 more years of sensory integration?!!   [Pam, I asked if you knew this info - he said, "No, I only did it at school when I was with my friends."]

whew.  thanks for letting me dump.  I just wanted y'all to have a bit of insight into my world.  It's chaotic most of the time

Back to our regularly scheduled program.

Below you'll see Mr. Intensity working with the cheap creative mom's version of metal insets.  They're made of styrofoam chip board (not sure of the technical name.)

Levi with the number rods.
Destany with the knobbed cylinders.
Mr. Intensity working with materials from Handwriting Without Tears.  The letter focus of the day was N, S, E, and W (letters on a compass).  There was also a station prepared with the sandpaper letters and a tray of rice with these same letters.
Before painting, we played a quick game of "Where's North America?"  I took the NA piece from our Melissa & Doug puzzle and hid it. While pretending to be explorers and searching we sang (to the tune of One little, two little, three little Indians):  Nina, Pinta, Santa Maria (3x's) These are Columbus's ships. For more Columbus day ideas, look here.
Above you see the children painting their maps (on the back of paper grocery sacks that I'd singed the edges and crumpled to look old).  On the wall, I hung maps of the world, US, and Arizona.  You'll also see N, S, E, & W in their proper locations.   I had a Phoenix map in the car that didn't make it inside.  I also forgot to mention the location of Kenya - Levi and his family are moving there next month.

Below is our attempt for a ship in a bottle.  It's blue water and vegetable oil with glitter/confetti in the center as ships.  The kids thought these were totally fab.  I added a bead of hot glue around the cap to keep it on. 
Last, but not least - the SHIPS!  They're made from egg cartons, toothpicks (sails) and play doh to anchor the sail.  There was enough material for each child to make 3.  However, by the time we made the ships the kids were toast and so was I.  We stopped at one ship, each.
After art group, we ate lunch at the park. Then we went to Madison Camelview Elementary to volunteer for Good News Club.  Some ladies at my church have been doing this for years.  Last year, Hubby went with us and got a seminary credit for volunteering.  Mr. Intensity loves singing songs, hearing the stories and eating sweet treats!  

[as I type, Mr. Intensity is laying in bed singing Nina, Pinta, Santa Maria!]


Julie said...

my hero! I am going to be sending you an email soon... lots to ask/share :)

Irritable Mother said...

I'm sorry, but I HAD to laugh out loud at the head-thumping story! Maybe it's genetic??? *grin*

Sadie said...

Looks like a fun art group! My 5 yr old still does similar things when he is excited around new people. He starts banging himself in the head. Or if he's on the floor, headbanging the floor. He excited and showing off (?). Boys do some pretty dumb stuff.....I remember when I met my husband (16 yrs old), we were in groups boys and girls....and the boys took off running around the movie theater parking lot pounding on each other...

John and Pam said...

Whoa! I did not know that about my son, Julie. Strange

MerrandaVK said...

You gave me quite a chuckle. Boys..
I am going to remember that bunny rabbit thing! Both my kids could use that. I am Ethny's Cubbie teacher, and she gets so excited when we get there she gets WILD, and its quite embarassing... We'll have to try that.

melinda said...

It's good to find another mom doing montessori with a child with sensory integration issues! Thanks for sharing all your ideas!


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