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To go along with Africa Week, we did some Letter "A" activities.
Montessori Pink Series
The "archaeological dig" activity with Ancient Egyptian figures was such a huge hit that I decided to use it for a letter activity as well. We talked about the letter "a," traced the sandpaper letter, and practiced saying its sound ("ahh"). I printed Pink Series materials from The Helpful Garden. I love that each "level" of printables had a page of directions to go along with it.
I laid out the image cards on M's mat, and hid the objects and movable alphabet letters in the sand. She used the scoop to find the objects and letters, and pulled them out with her tweezers. After she matched the objects with the pictures, I helped her use the letters to spell the words.
Pin Pricking Letters
I set up a pin poking activity for Africa, but M wasn't all that interested (she made it about half way around the outline of Africa). She asked if she could trace letters instead (ummm.. yes?!). I wrote a capital and lower case "A" on a small sheet of construction paper, and clipped it over a sheet of foam on M's clipboard. She "traced" the letters, then decorated the sheet with mummy stamps.
We are putting together an alphabet book (so far she has made a "b" out of buttons and a "c" with coffee grounds). I helped M trace Africa onto a small sheet of construction paper, and she cut it out. I wrote a lower case "a" in the middle and she "traced" it with African animal stickers.
Letter Search and Tracing
I'm not usually a huge fan of worksheets, but I did print out a combination of pages from the Letter of the Week Curriculum from Confessions of a Homeschooler (I got this as part of an eBook bundle), hide and seek letters from Mamas Learning Corner (free printables), ABC Activities from 3 Dinosaurs (free printables - I think M would also like these dot pages), and letter mazes from 1+1+1=1 (free printables). I usually put tracing sheets in page protectors (like these Write And Wipe Pockets) so M can erase them and re-do the sheets as many times as she wants. I've noticed lately that she's more interested if she can write directly on the paper, so that's what we did. (I'm sure it'll change again next week - I can never figure this kid out!)
M loved using the dot markers, and requested more sheets. I flipped over the worksheet pages and randomly wrote letters all over the page. She used different colors of dot markers to find different letters on the page (cover all the a's with pink, b's with blue, etc.) I plan on printing out more sheets to have on hand if she requests them again.
Aside from the traditional letter activities, we did some other "A" activities this week:
A is for Amphibian
The theme for M's Rainforest Fridays class was amphibians. She saw and touched two frogs and two toads, made a cute red eyed tree frog craft, and listened to the story of The Frog with the Big Mouth. These programs are so much fun!
A is for Arboretum
Friday was my mom's birthday, so we drove up to Asheville to celebrate with her. It was the last week for the "Some Assembly Required" exhibit (Lego brick sculptures by artist Sean Kenney) at the NC Arboretum, so we decided that would be a great place to visit.
The exhibit was pretty incredible. I could not believe the intricate sculptures were made entirely of Legos! (Check them out - they're all Legos! Even the bird feeder was filled with Legos - haha!) M liked the butterfly the best, and she burned off a ton of energy running (literally) through the arboretum.
A Week was Awesome! Stick around to see what fun we'll come up with next! And don't forget to check back on the main Around the World page for links to the other posts in the Letter of the Week / Geography series.
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