Saturday, February 04, 2012

A for Apple

Today, the Tot Club was in session again. A was still the letter of the week, and today, it was A for Apple.

The session went more smoothly today, as compared to the last session. Mummy wasn't as flustered, and was in better control. Only thing is, EV was occasionally distracted by the materials, even though I tried to hide it under the table. So I had to redirect her attention, by introducing something new to her. Not necessarily a totally new activity, but just a new segment of a particular activity, eg, colouring the leaf of the apple while I continued to paste the red crepe paper on the apple itself.

We started with the greeting song, which is to the tune of Good Morning, from popular classic Singing in the Rain. Here are the lyrics again:

Good afternoon, good afternoon
It's fun to learn and play
Good afternoon, good afternoon to you

Then I began with the introduction of the letter 'A' and 'a', followed by the 'a' feely card, and EV remembered that the writing direction was 'round' and 'down.  I then sang the 'Ants on my ankle' song, which EV enjoys very much, and quickly went through the pictures from last session. EV could point out all the correct images when I asked 'where is...?'.

Then I introduced what we were going to learning today - A for Apple, along with some other new images, which was stuck on the A4 sheet. I traced 'A' and 'a' with her, and then she traced 'a' herself in the air, saying 'round' and 'down' repeatedly. She identified apple, aeroplane and ape correctly, but needed help for arrow, ax and anchor, which were new to her. I didn't harp too much on that. 

Next activity was craft work - pasting red crepe paper on to a apple cut-out. EV wanted to do everything herself, and kept saying 'I do', or 'I know'. I let her try to do it, and guided her when she needed help. She did probably a third of the pasting. I did the rest as I got her to colour the leaf and stalk so that she won't get distracted.

I adapted the next part of the session with a sequencing and counting activity from Home School Creations, which directed me to a page of different sized apples from File Folder Fun and cut them out. While EV needed help to lay the apples sequentially according to their sizes, she could easily identify the biggest apple and smallest apple, which she named 'baby apple'. I also got her to count the apples together with me.

By this time, I could tell that EV was getting tired, and decided to leave the colouring activity that I had prepared for another day. As you know, I've been exposing EV to some letter sounds for some time, so here in Tot Club, I will continue to do the same. After I briefly went through the spelling and sounds for 'a-p-p-l-e' (EV repeated each letter & sound as I said them one by one), I sang another 'A' phonics song - 'Andy Ant' from The Alphabet Zoo Songbook by Julia Gabriel. I had already played this to her previously, so EV is quite familiar with it. I ended the session with the rhyme 'Way up in the apple tree', which goes like this:

Way up in the apple tree (wave arms in the air)
Two little apples smiled at me (rub the knuckle of pointer fingers on both cheek)
I shook the tree as hard as I could (shake the body)
Down came the apples (make downward motion with arms)
Mmm... were they good! (rub tummy)

EV liked this, and when I say it a second time just before dinner, she followed the actions almost perfectly! 

At bedtime, I read a book which coincided with the theme. It is 'Amelia Bedelia's First Apple Pie', written by Herman Parish, illustrated by Lynne Avril. It talks about Amelia Bedelia's visit to her grandparents', and first attempt at making apple pie. It details her visit to the apple orchard, where she learns about the various types of apples, and also lists her grandma's recipe. The book also interestingly explores Amelia's tendency to misunderstand similar sounding words or take words literally, eg, really watching her fingers when grandma asked her to do so, but meant she should be careful; handing grandma her shoe when grandma said 'shoo, shoo' to chase away the birds.

At the end of the book is a recipe for apple pie that parents can make with the kids. A good book to supplement this session.

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