before five in a row · Preschool

My Blue Boat – Our Before Five in a Row Preschool Unit


We had a much better second week with Before Five in a Row as we “rowed” My Blue Boat by Chris L DemarestLike Yellow Ball, My Blue Boat is one of the more difficult titles to find so when I was able to locate a copy through our library’s intra-loan system I moved it to the front of the list.


Monday morning we sat down to read the story and I could tell immediately M was more interested than she had been with Yellow Ball.  Afterwards, we worked on the lapbook from  Since I plan on putting our “to be saved” work throughout the year in a binder, M created the lapbook on thick card stock instead of a folder.



My Blue Boat Lapbook

We also had a scavenger hunt to find as many BLUE items in the house as we could.  M ran from room to room and was very specific about which items were included – some entirely blue and some with only hints of blue that she pointed out.  At the end, we laid out our treasure to look at all the blue we’d found.  Our loot included: articles of clothing, books, a few stuffed animals, some toys, a blanket and a refrigerator magnet.  The pictures are not great but I didn’t want to stop the fun to grab the good camera – sorry!



When I picked up the book to read again on the second day, I couldn’t help but laugh as M questioned “why are we reading that one, again??”  I know her interest in each book will be different but I’m going to try to read each book at least twice throughout the week.

Afterwards, I took out our first set of classification cards, one for each animal we encountered in the book.  I gave her the stack of them and as I read the book, if she saw an animal on the pages, she hunted for the matching card.  Each card has some basic information about the species on it, which is a nice starting point.  If you want to go more in depth about certain animals, you would need additional resources.  This week we talked about seagulls, whales and dolphins.

BFIAR fandex example

Later in the week, I asked M if she wanted to make her own boat.  I had no set plan on how to do this, so I left it up to M to decide what material we used.  She wanted to make it out of construction paper, so we did.  She picked a specific color for each part of the boat, water and sun.  For some added texture, I have her a plastic straw to use as the mast.


After she created her boat, M came up with her own story titled “My Purple Boat.”  It was funny to see her look around the room and use other books we had been reading for inspiration.  I wrote down her story exactly how she dictated it to me.  She LOVED hearing her story read back to her afterwards.

We also did a lot of work with our Ocean unit study, which I’ll share the details of soon since we are wrapping it up now!

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