Thursday, April 30, 2015

For Mom or Grandma or Nana

We have been working on some special projects for Mom and Dad.  A great gift for that special someone and it's easy.  To see the finished project and how to---

Because our MWF morning class did this project last year, they create a different gift for Mom and Dad.  Several years ago we had lots and lots and lots of scrapbook paper donated to our program.  One sheet was a wood grain. I saw this idea on Lisa Longley's Wine & Glue blog and adapted it for our preK kiddos.
Here's Lisa's original post---

Here's the MCP version---

Ready to wrap for Mommy and Daddy!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Fiesta Forever

I haven't been everywhere but it's on my list.
Susan Sontag

This week our MWF preK will take their last adventure to our neighbor to the south, Mexico.  As our students learn about other countries, we always talk about children all over the world are going to school, playing, getting ready for bed and more.  We have large laminated world maps for groups of 2-3 children to locate the country.  The children are spread out all over the classroom and most can identify the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean.  They love exploring the maps.  Need more ideas?  Check under our 'Geography' label.

We will be making a ristra.
We used to use pasta for our pattern but I found a beaded car seat at a garage sale and tore it apart for hundreds of wooden beads (this is easier said than done). 

Monday, April 27, 2015

My Mondrian

Here's what some of our preK kiddos did today. 
 I love it!

Group work---

At the easel---

 At the art table---

Once Upon a Time...

Today is Tell A Story Day. 
Telling a story is much different than reading a story.  For young children, they can tell a story without being able to recognize letters or letter sounds.  At MCP, the children tell us stories everyday.  They also create stories in our dramatic play area, the building center and within their art. Telling stories helps us build relationships. 

We also occasionally will dictate a story as a group. This is an activity we usually do with our preK MWF students.  When the students dictate a story, the children are communicating thoughts and ideas.  They also have to listen to others as the story is being told so the story will have some sort of sequence of events.  When we type these stories up and send them home, we hope your child exudes a sense of achievement and pride.  As an art form, storytelling gives children a chance to create something that is all their own.  Storytelling encourages creative writing. Writing skills and reading skills are connected on many levels. Storytelling encourages children to think, imagine plus it's fun!  

What can you do at home?
*Scholastic Story Starters will help get you started---
*Grab some random items from around the house and build a story.  Use toys, household items and more.  You can set on a table and pick an item or put in a bag to blindly pick the next item to be included in the story.  Once upon a time, there was a teddy bear that found a fork.  The fork had magic powers...
You get the idea.
*Tell stories in the car.  Once upon a time, there was a usually enough to get most preschoolers started in storytelling.

Enjoy some time listening to your child tell you a story!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Piet Mondrian---part two

I love cardboard boxes.  Large cardboard boxes allow students to work and create together.  These projects work on communicating with others, sharing ideas, sharing space and it's fun.

For Piet Mondrian, I covered a large piece of cardboard with white paper.
During center time, a small group of students were interested in participating.  They indicated where they wanted the black lines (teacher assistance was required).  Black electrical tape was added.  Students chose a color and were allowed to choose three spaces.  I placed a small marker dot inside to remind them where to paint.

We will have rulers, yardsticks and more for students to be Mondrian this week!
Large group work---

At the easel---
In the art center---
Be inspired and creative with your child today!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Piet Mondrian 2015-part one

Last spring, our MWF classes embraced the work of Piet Mondrian.  We did not have a formal lesson on Mondrian but the children were so inspired by his work, we created many opportunities in the art center for them to be 'Mondrian'.  Piet Mondrian MCP 2014---

This year with our MWF preK classes, we had a lesson on Mondrian.  I have discovered that books on art and artists for early childhood are weak in content and the artist's work so I have learned to improvise.  I found that purchasing a coffee table type book with many of the artist's work and then placing the work in page protectors or laminating works best for our program.  The children are able to hold the work in their hand, make comments and talk with their friends.  I have purchased books on Van Gogh, Kandinsky, Picasso and now Mondiran.  The Mondrian book I recently purchased contained over one hundred of his works plus photographs of the artist. These books are often very inexpensive in your favorite online market.  I apologize to the authors and publishers of these magnificent books that I must tear them apart but I hope there is the understanding that much knowledge is being gained by our young artists!
  We looked at Mondrian's early paintings of trees and landscapes and moved to his better known pieces with bold colors and black lines.   We had a discussion on shapes and color and we moved to the tables.  Each student was given a black marker and crayons.  You can also see the pages of the Mondrian book on the tables for student inspiration.
Finished work...
The children will have more experiences with Mondrian next week.  We will have group and center activities available.  Explore Mondiran's work with your child---