Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Give a Mouse a Cookie and Mouse Paint

This week's topic revolved around mice. We started with If you Give a Mouse a Cookie, followed by Mouse Paint and Owen. All activities were lapbook intensive and a big family night to end the week, so I tried to get several pictures.

The first set of pictures shows all of the artwork that both kids worked on throughout the week. Stephen worked on several "characters" from our books (found on and The first one is a mouse covered in glitter glue, followed by some bag puppets, while the last two are paper puzzles that we glued together.

I found a great unit on nutrition at There were several cut/paste/color activities. The first one, ABC foods, required Stephen to color, cut out, and place the food on the right place according to its starting letter. I thought the next one was really cute. It is a refrigerator that he glued various foods on and arranged them in his own way. I am very specific when it come to where things go in our refrigerator, so he enjoyed putting the food where ever he wanted. The last two activities involved a preschool friendly food pyramid. I don't think he caught onto the concept of the pyramid, but he did understand the food groups and placed them correctly. He also understood what foods were good for you and what foods could harm your teeth if you have too much.
I had several hands on activities that we did with If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. The first was a mouse on a card that was very hungry. I put a number card above him and Stephen fed him the appropriate amount of cookies. We also had fun with story sequencing cards, mouse cookie dominoes from the story and a cookie sequencing activity. The cookie sequencing activity involved the kids making their own cookies and the chocolate chips were various shapes. They first sorted their shapes and then glued them onto their cookies. Stephen then sequenced the cookies when we were all done.

I mentioned that we read Owen too, but Stephen really didn't like the whole concept of the book. It is about a little mouse that needs to give up his blankie. Honestly, I skipped several pages since it was coming off a bit negative. This book might be good for some people, but we think it is OK for a little boy to still have his blankie. At the end of the story, Owen's Mom cuts the blankie into smaller blankies so he can put it into his pocket. Stephen immediatly said "why doesn't he just leave it upstairs in his room"? So, we decided that we would leave Stephen's blankie in one piece and he could have it at night and family snuggle time. Quite frankly, I still have my stuffed dog "Beans" from my childhood, that still sleeps on my nightstand. He doesn't go everywhere with me anymore, but he is definitly OFF LIMITS to the kids. They can play with any of my bears, but STEP AWAY FROM BEANS!!
Mouse Paint was our next book since we enjoy a good mess. I had read this book for the first time about a year ago and Stephen was finally at the point where he could grasp the concept of mixing colors. We found another book called Lunch for a Purple Snake. The title sounds a little gross, but it is about a little girl that is at her Grandfather's art studio. He teaches her that you only need to start with a few colors to make every color of the rainbow. He also taught her to use white and black to lighten and darken colors. The best part of the book was that it took us step-by-step through the final picture. We read the book a couple of times and then decided to paint along with them. Stephen was a little initimidated at first, but with a little help, he was able to make his picture look just like the one at the end of the book.

Our first Family Fun night involved making a huge wall hanging painting for Daddy's office using the color combinations that we learned. Both kids really got into it and remembered the mice getting paint on their feet. This is why we have cheap flooring! Not really, but I don't blame the previous owners since they had 3 kids. Rhea made a royal mess of herself while Stephen methodically painted at his end of the paper.
The finaly Family Fun night activity was inspired by If you Give a Mouse a Cookie (and my mother that gave me a TON of straws). The first part of the activity happend by acident. I had all of the straws in a nice neat pile with the intentions of the kids sorting them on the correct colored paper. I think there were four differnt colored straws. Anyway, one of the kids acidentally slipped upon approching the pile and the straws went flying. After we had fun with sliding through straws it was time to sort. I made it a little more interesting and called it a "race". A Bough always jumps at the chance for competition, and it worked! The straws were quickly sorted followed by a straw throwing fight with Daddy. I think the kids won!!

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