We were one peewee down today and the peewee’s definitely missed Henry.
Summary - We again focused on trains, today with a lot more emphasis on the two types of trains – passenger trains and freight trains. We also focused on the parts of a train – the engine, the caboose, the whistle – the driver of a train, the conductor, and a train map.
The primary book for the day was Trainstop by Barbara Lehman, though I also used the simple board book, Freight Trains, and the Thomas book, Crack in the Track at other points in the day – Yes, we overloaded on trains today. Trainstop is a wordless book. I picked it because the train looks like a metro and some of the illustrations include a metro-looking map. And without words, we all got to make up the story. The general idea is that a girl gets on the train, watches out the window as the train goes along (seeing buildings, trees, apartments, etc). The train stops and she gets off to help some little, fairy-like people, and returns to the train for the next stop. We downplayed the fairy-people and focused on the train and how it went through a tunnel, past buildings, etc.
Open play – Train track and trains downstairs.
Circle time – Sang welcome song, everyone got a train whistle and we blew them as we counted to 20, sang the alphabet song while moving like a train, then read the book.
Snack – We had a carrot and blueberry train and a apple with peanut butter cracker train (I was impressed that everyone ate every item of their snack.)
Art – We colored and made conductor hats (the peewees made one for Henry too.)
Song break – We went back to the carpet squares and learned “I’ve been working on the railroad,” blowing our train whistles throughout.
Activity 1 – Coloring freight train picture and passenger train pictures while I read the books Freight Trains and Crack in the Track. I wanted them to see the difference as they colored. By the end of the two books and the coloring, they all seemed to get the difference between freight train (carries “stuff”) and passenger train (carries people.)
Activity 2 - I made a metro map with colored straws. I wanted them to get an idea of how a train knows where to go by following a train route on a map. So they each got a train and would tell everyone which track their train wanted to go on, then follow that track. Because the “map” was made of straws, the trains stayed on the track.
Closing – back to the circle, re-cap of what we did, re-read the book
Outdoor activity – Human train. Poppy picked to be the conductor, Jackson wanted to be the whistle, and Bodie wanted to be the Caboose. We hooked together with a jump rope and the train moved around the “tracks” in the yard.
Great day. (LOTS of potty breaks – five, to be exact. The peewees are definitely getting the hang of that!)
[Except Poppy, of course...]