Tot School

Our All About Me and Five Senses Unit

All About Me Cover pic

I have been wanting to do an All About Me theme with M for awhile now so we decided to spend the last two weeks working on it.  Besides learning about characteristics of the human body, we explored the five senses and I think it’s safe to say, we both had a lot of fun doing so.

Books

To work on this theme, we did A LOT of reading.  Since spring is finally here, we were able to have story time outside!

WP_20150413_13_36_05_ProBooks provide such a great resource and allowed us to really dig into the theme even when we didn’t have time for full blown crafts or activities throughout the week.  Some of our favorites include:

Me and my Amazing Body by Joan Sweeney (This was an unexpected favorite as it introduced all the major components of the human body in a very understandable way.)

Eyes, Nose, Fingers and Toes by Judy Hindley

My Many Colored Days by Dr. Suess

Dr. Suess also provided some funny reads with The Nose Book, The Eye Book, The Tooth Book, The Foot Book and The Ear Book.

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M reading to herself about the five senses

Self Portraits

I gave each kiddo a piece of white cardstock (a little heavy for better durability) and told them to draw a picture of themselves.  It was cute to see what they came up with – even though it may not look like it, they announced each part of the body as they drew it.

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Afterwards, I laid out words and had them glue on the sentence “This is a picture of me!”  I scrambled the words on the table and had them identify the words we needed next based on letter sounds.  M knew immediately the words “a” and “me” and recognized “picture” quickly after she said the word aloud.  “This” was tricky since we haven’t worked on letter combinations much – she had a hard time recognizing the “th-” sound.

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Rhyming

Rhyming words is M’s new favorite activity around here.  She is constantly yelling out pairs of words that rhyme (she doesn’t mind if they are even actual words!) To have some rhyming fun, we did an activity from This Reading Mama that had M gluing rhyming words onto a page.  We started with a picture and the word nose – and then glued on bunch of objects that rhymed (rose, hose, doze, bows, toes, close)

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Experiments about the Human Body

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After reading Me and My Amazing Body, we used the book Play and Find Out about the Human Body (Easy Experiments for Young Children) to answered a bunch of “I wonder…” questions about our body.  This was probably my favorite activity because I could see it clicking for M as she worked through each “experiment.”  The questions we answered were:

  1. Why do my fingertips have ridges?  (Answer: the ridges make it easier to pick things up) I put a piece of clear tape over their thumb and index finger and had them attempt to pick a penny up off the table.  Then they took the tape off and tried to pick the same penny up.  They realized it was easier without the tape.  WP_20150415_10_19_51_Pro
  2. Why are my elbows wrinkly? (Answer: the wrinkles let you bend your arm easily) To demonstrate this, we used flexible drinking straws.  M tried bending it at a point without wrinkles and then realized it bend much easier at the top where the wrinkles are.  We then thought of all the other areas besides our elbow that wrinkly skin helps us bend – the kids came up with fingers, toes, eyelids and knees!WP_20150415_10_23_00_Pro
  3. Why is my hair curly? (Answer: Strands of curly hair bend around) Without getting into genetics, we simply explored the physical trait of curly hair but taking a strip of computer paper and pressing it tightly against the edge of the table.  After sliding it up and down a few times, the kids noticed the paper was starting to curl.  They kept going to see just how curly they could get it.WP_20150415_10_25_25_Pro
  4. How big is my heart? (Answer: about the size of your fist) This one was super easy but also the most fun for the kids.  Before we started, the kids all guessed how big they though hearts were (the concept of proportion was lost on them).  We then each made a fist and put it in the middle of the table.  We compared who had the bigger one (me) and whose were smallest (the kids were all about the same size).  Then they put their fist against the chest to see how big their heart was.  It was fun watching them realize their hearts would get bigger as they continued to grow!WP_20150415_10_28_42_Pro
  5. How do I catch a cold? (Answer: from germs spreading through the answer when a person coughs or sneezes) Taking a tissue, they coughed and theoretically watched as the tissue moved, thus capturing the germs that would otherwise spread.  This one failed miserably as the entire concept went above their ends and they just had fun pretending to cough and sneeze into the tissue.  Oh well.WP_20150415_10_32_12_Pro
  6. Why do I have different shaped teeth? (Answer: teeth in the front of your mouth are better shaped for biting food and the teeth in the back of your mouth are better at chewing) I gave each kid an apple slice and had them take a bit and try chewing using only their front teeth.  Then I had them take a bite with the front teeth but chew it up with the back teeth.  They all realized quickly that without even trying, the food got chewed up better by the back teeth.WP_20150415_10_36_28_Pro

The Five Senses

M worked on an activity that had her picking which sense was used based on different pictures.  This was a good way to reiterate each of the five senses.  We actually played this multiple times over the two weeks – it was fun to see her categorize certain objects differently each time (for example: the cup of hot chocolate was taste one time and smell the next)

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We also took advantage of the warm weather and played a Five Senses exploration game outside.  We tried to experience the outdoors using each sense individually (except for taste, I didn’t want anyone eating dirt!)

Five Sense outside

For sight, we saw trees and our swing.  For sound, I had them cover their eyes and they heard cars and birds.  For touch, they went right to the grass but after thinking about it for a minute, also realized they felt the wind.  Smell was easy as everyone ran right to the flowers!

 

This has been one of my favorite “units” so far and I can’t wait to continue exploring it as my kids gets older.

*Check out these and other great tot school ideas at 1+1+1=1.

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