Thursday, September 22, 2011

Where in the world is ...?

We started out reviewing the world map from last week, but this time I wanted M to color in each continent a different color.  He had his own ideas:

Outside time was on the front porch:

Then we all tried out rope-skipping:

During DEAR time, R picked the book and M helped him:

Aviron bashamayim

M enjoyed making the paper airplane, but he enjoyed decorating it with stickers even more:
He tried to fly it, too, but I didn't get any action shots......

I did get some action shots of him, though, while we were out walking on a gorgeous autumn day:

And here he is examining some leaves:

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Odds and Evens

We used the Montessori sandpaper numbers to start today's lesson.  First we ordered them (1 - 9), and M counted them, tracing each digit in the air with his finger as he counted.  Then I showed him how we can take turns, where I counted the odds and he counted the evens.  Then we switched roles a few times.  Next, I put all the odds together and all the evens together, and lined up Jenga blocks next to each number. This showed him how the evens are all in pairs, while the odd ones all have one extra.
Yeah, I get it!
After he'd had his fill of this, he made a few more Thank-You notes, once again copying the word from the spelling tile game:


And here is R, quietly sitting in the book corner, and "reading" books to himself:

Monday, September 19, 2011

Thank you notes

I was planning to do the letter Bet today, but M has been really getting into serious copying, so I decided to dive into thank-you notes for his birthday presents.  Here is one:

Here are some other examples of his growing skills.  Yesterday, my daughter Z was doing some 6th grade homework analyzing the properties of this figure:

M watched with great interest, then went to his Dry Erase board, and without looking, produced this:
And of course, a flag!
And here he wrote nearly half the Hebrew alphabet, again from memory:

R is also developing nicely.  Here he is playing catch by himself with the tetherball:

......Oh, and I got my license in the mail today!!!!! WOO HOO!!!!!!!!

Post for Friday....

Busy weekend. My first baby is off to college. So I didn't get around to blogging about Friday.  Between helping D with last minute packing, I spent some quality time on the porch with M, R, and Luli Shabluli:

I didn't realize how much M was impressed until he produced this the same evening:

Thursday, September 15, 2011

First Geography Lesson

Actually, first I want to point out that M is learning more and more of our morning routine!  He already loves the excited greetings that announce that school is starting: "Boker Tov, M..." -- "Boker Tov, Morah!" followed by "Yadayim Lemalah" and a few extra jumps at the end for good measure.  After that, I do several morning blessings/prayers with choreography.  I start with "Modah Ani" with some easy stretches, then "Adon Olam" set to the Sun Salutation yoga sequence, then "Ashrei" with abdominal crunches, and "Halleluya" with some brisk aerobic moves. M imitates the Sun Salutation and aerobics -- pretty challenging! -- and gives me a counterweight or plays "airplane" during my crunches. R usually joins in during "Yadayim Lemalah" and for the "Ashrei" airplane, as well.

Both boys know that when "Halleluya" is done, we go to morning work. Today I introduced the World Map, a staple of the Montessori preschool curriculum.  I put an overhead transparency sheet over the printed map, and M understood the idea of tracing over the lines with a marker.  He did it twice, first with green, then with blue marker (but not before writing, then erasing, a Shin on top!):

Then he wanted to practice more with the little Legos.  I love how he keeps practicing the previous lessons!  Later on, he drew a flag on the Etch-a-sketch, as well as with the Jenga blocks on the rug:
"Hmm.. I know there was a rectangle and some stripes involved here....."
His alphabet writing is improving, too:

Oh, dear, I haven't made the Challah dough yet!  Gotta go!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


We were scheduled to do painting, but M had gotten this big box of tiny legos from his grandma for his birthday and was begging to try them out.  I have been holding off on giving them to him because R is still of an age to put stuff like that in his mouth.... So I got a large aluminum baking tray and showed him how to keep the legos organized, by keeping them in individual ziplocs.  Together we built a house and a doghouse (he's been reading about Clifford the Big Red Dog):

Then he wanted to make a tree and a car:

Meanwhile, R was happy to have the big Duplos all to himself.  Here he is cleaning up:

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Today my planned activity was taking longer than I expected, so I'll show pics of it tomorrow.  I'll just say that I was using colored cardstock, and M politely asked for a yellow piece (matches our yellow Lemalah logo shirts) and produced this:

I love that he not only wanted to practice his Shin's, but connected them to the English alphabet, which he wrote from right to left (thinking in Hebrew!)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Shin is for.....

Shalom, shiur, shalosh, shesh!

What a great letter it is!  M had a great time copying words with the letter Shin:

I also showed him how to make a Shin with his hand, by holding up 3 fingers:
Sorry it's a bit blurry -- he was excited!
  Since M just had his birthday yesterday, he was really excited to show his age this way -- Shin for Shalosh!

Then I looked at his work again and realized something really cool:  Shin (Shalosh=3) and another Shin spells Shesh (6):
Spelling and math at once!
 Meanwhile, R was busy with his own coloring, learning to properly use the markers and put them away:

Great work, boys!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Challah, Flags, and more

I was so delighted this morning when M said, as soon as morning exercise was over, "Achshav shiur!" (lesson now).  I sang "Hayom yom shishi" (Today is Friday) to him, and then brought out the challah dough that I had prepared the previous night.  I gave him a small chunk, and showed him how to roll it out into a snake, and then twist it into a roll:
These will be yummy tonight!

Then I showed him an American Flag, in preparation for 9-11 this Sunday (which will also be his birthday).  We talked about the shapes and colors, and counted the red stripes.  Then I gave him a white sheet of paper and a box of crayons, and he drew a blue rectangle with a star in it in the upper left corner:

I didn't expect him to be able to draw that star by himself!
 I helped him color in the rectangle, and showed him how to add star stickers:

Finally, I showed him how to add stripes, and he added the correct number without help!

M's first American flag!
R was not quite as successful, but then again, he is only half of M's age:
R's first American flag (sort of).....
 Then M wanted to work on his letters:

and to draw Abba's big blue car with lots of people in it:

Then we went out to play!
Finally a sunny day!

Thursday, September 8, 2011


Today we introduced cut and paste!  The scissors were a bit intimidating -- M was able to make a few cuts on the edge of a page, but no control yet.  So I cut out triangles, and showed him how to paste them together to make 6-pointed stars:

M is gluing together stars!

Then he picked one of the stars to write his name on.  He wanted to use the stamps to do it:
Oops, there's an extra Aleph there.....

Look how proud he is!

Way too rainy today to go out, so I put the stereo on, and we danced a bit in the living room.  Then M played pick-up-sticks while R rested with a bottle.  Snack was baby carrots and cheerios, then more milk for both of them.  We read some books on the sofa until Lemalah-time was up. 

Here's hoping we get some sun tomorrow.....