Sunday, April 26, 2009

Tot School--H Week

Isaiah is 38 months

Finishing up the letters in Isaiah's name this week.

H is for....

Our verse for this week was I Peter 1:15 But as He Who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct (ESV). Since this is still sort of new for us, I'll say again that I didn't make Isaiah memorize this; we're still working on getting him to say please and thank you and peoples' names, so I think memorizing a verse this long would be a little hard for him yet; however, he is doing a great job learning his children's catechism, but that's for another post. For this week, we talked about this verse every day (and mama memorized it) and ways that we can be holy in our daily activities. For Isaiah we talked about obedience and how he can obey God when he obeys mama and daddy; but how mama and daddy also must obey God!

Our Bible story for the week was about Hannah and Samuel. I didn't do nearly what I had hoped to do with this story, so maybe I'll be able to remember my ideas and do them on the next go around. We did read the story of Hannah in the Bible (in English and Russian!). We talked about her prayer and her promise to God, and how she kept her promise to God. (Then we prayed for a baby, too!)

Isaiah was very happy to have a play date with his friend Lydia, at last! Lydia's mommy and I had been trying to get back into our regular play dates for a while now, so we were all happy to have one again.

And what better snack could you have than Honey Nut Cheerios, I ask you? I think that I was just as excited about this special treat as Isaiah was, maybe even more!

Of course, we had to make handprints. This is actually the first time that I have ever made a print of Isaiah's hands. He seemed to be a little confused, but complied anyway. Then, of course, he wanted to touch everything else before I got him cleaned up.

We read the great book Old Hat, New Hat by Stan and Jan Berenstain, thanks to Grandma S. I had planned on making hats like some in the book, but Isaiah decided to take several really long naps this week, and with other activities already scheduled (and amazing weather!), we ran out of time. I think I'm going to try to incorporate the hat idea with other letters though, because Isaiah is really into hats lately!

I know this picture is out of focus, but I couldn't resist it! He was just so cute wearing this knit hat around the house on Friday as he helped me clean.

And he had to wear this orange hat while sitting in his favorite spot on Saturday morning as we waited for Daddy to come home.

Ok, couldn't come up with a legitimate "h" word for this one, but here is an example of his current obsession. This Little Man LOVES ziploc bags (too bad z is at the end of the alphabet!). If he sees me get out a bag of something he asks for the bag, not because he wants what's inside (I'm finally learning) but because he wants to try to open the bag, take out what's inside then put it back inside and start the whole process over again. So this time, his snack went from plate to bag to plate to bag, with a few bites taken in the process.

We did some big grocery shopping on Friday, and Isaiah was my big helper as always. He likes me to hand him the products, then he puts them into the basket for me. He does a great job!

As in ham and cheese blini, which is sort of like a crepe with ham and cheese inside. He got this as a treat on Friday for lunch, and he ate it while watching Letter Factory. We haven't had the video for very long, but he seems to enjoy it. He has finally started repeating the sounds with the characters, but I haven't noticed yet any letter recognition, but much more sound recognition.

Isaiah played with his hammer a good bit this week, but when I asked him to help mehammer his H to the paper for his big name project, he was NOT interested. He had seen the small box that holds his little containers of paint, and he wanted to play with that instead! So after we got the letter attached, probably the fastest art project ever, he was happy to remove the paint containers and put them back in.

Isaiah's hair grows remarkably fast, so I take care of the cutting. I'm always amazed at how different he looks after a haircut, so here's a before...

...and an after.

I found this great Chinese made toy at our store for less than $1, and it actually worked! (sometime I'll have to explain that comment.) Although, don't pull the string in a room with tall refrigerators behind which the spinning circle can fall and be lost--this thing can really fly high! I couldn't get a good picture of it because I was enjoying myself too much. :)

We got to hang Isaiah's name on the wall in his room at last! You can tell that later in the letters I was trying to get a little bit more creative. Maybe we'll do it again sometime; I'm sure that this won't last forever.

We're a pretty musical family, so I enjoy focusing on songs that have lots of words with our letter of the week. Some of our favorites from this week were: Happy and You Know It, Holy Hands, Hallelujah Praise Jehovah, Head and Shoulders Knees and Toes and just plain humming, which worked especially well on all our walks in the park where the paths were bumpy and you could hum all sorts of interesting things while we bumped along.

Well, ok, not really hot, yet, but relative to what we have been experiencing, I have felt really hot on our walks this week. Thankfully Isaiah is no longer in the polar suit! Hooray! Now that he's not all constricted in the great big thing, he can sit up straighter and enjoy watching the cars go by, which seems to really hold his attention!

We also watched some youtube videos of hippos and hamsters, but I think that's all for this week for us. Head on over to 1+1+1=1 to see more great Tot School ideas, and you'll also get to see Carisa's beautiful little girl!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Tot School--A Week III

Isaiah is 38 months

A is for Apple (as in Mac)

This week we caught up on our art project of the letters in Isaiah's name. Here he is praying for an iphone, that goes with the second I in his name. We also did an A of course with little black ants painted on it with q-tips, but somehow I missed getting a picture of that. You'll see it when we have our "big reveal" of all the letters of his name after this week.

Isaiah enjoyed playing with his little airplane one day while doing his therapy.

This was our big project for the week. I've decided to work our letter theme each week around a story in the Bible. This gives me more structure, and helps me find creative ways to teach Isaiah about our AWESOME God. This week we made our own ark. I had a shoe box with a flip-style lid, that worked perfectly! I cut strips of 2 different colors of brown paper for our logs. Then we glued them on. Isaiah did a great job hammering, them, too to make sure that they stayed attached.

And what ark would be complete with out animals? We had a hand-me-down book about zooanimals that broke at the binding, so I took each cardboard page and gave them to Isaiah to put in and out of the ark, since this is by far his favorite thing to do with anything!

While Isaiah did eat a lot of apples this week, this time apples was taken from our verse for the week: Proverbs 25:11 "A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver." (ESV) No, I didn't have him memorize it (though I did!), but we talked about it every day at least once, probably 2 or 3 times. I already have a verse ready for H for this week, and I hope to incorporate a craft as well. My goal with these ideas is to simply continue to build on the foundation of using the Scripture as our guide for life, which my husband and I have been desiring to teach Isaiah from the very beginning. I think though that this will help me just as much as it will help Isaiah! May the Lord bless His Word, that it may be implanted deeply into Isaiah's heart!


And here's a special treat: a video of my little acrobat. Who needs aerobics when you can have so much fun with your little person?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Tot School--I Week II

Isaiah is 38 months old

We worked on I again this week, but I must confess that this is a tough letter for me and suggestions are welcome so that we can keep them for the next time around!

But here's what we came up with for this week...

I is for

Intense concentration
This is the look that Isaiah has when he's really focused on something, like moving objects from one place to another, which is absolutely one of his favorite things to do. I just love that little puckered up mouth!

We're working on making signs with each letter of his name to put up in his room. Another confession--we're behind on this project as it only occurred to me after we were half-way through his name. We're still a letter behind, but we'll catch up eventually! The idea was for him to decorate them in different ways, but naturally organizing the crayons or paints was much more important, so that's what happened most of the time! :) He did like gluing though!

Which is what seemed to be his reaction to having paint all over his hands, but that didn't stop him from continuing to implant his cute little fingers into the little containers of paint.

This was actually a Christmas present, but it works well for this week! We played in his igloo, but thankfully we didn't have to dress like eskimos!

The weather is definitely getting warmer here, but the parks around us are absolutely, terribly swampy, so we headed to a great indoor play area with our friends Oksana and Slava! The boys had a great time getting around the big play area, laughing, laughing and laughing!

Ice cream
You had to know this was coming again! Another great treat of $0.29 ice cream! Truly irresistable!

Friday was Grandaddy's birthday, and as we were waiting to call him and enjoy the pleasure ofinteracting with him via Skype, Isaiah got very impatient! He really wanted to talk to Grandaddy!

"Where is he?!"

So that was our week. Go check out 1+1+1=1, to check out lots of other Tot Schools from last week!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Tot School--A Week II

Isaiah is 38 months old

In case you're confused by I, then S and now A, be assured that we are not confused about the order of the letters in the alphabet, we're just going through the letters in Isaiah's name first, then we'll go back and fill in around them.

So, for the first A in Isaiah's name, we had a bit of a different week.

A is for Adventure! Our friends invited us to join them on an overnight adventure to Novgorod! I'll do another post about all that took place there, but to follow our theme, I'll just say that while on an adventure, A is for...

While we waited for our bus, Lydia and Isaiah laughed and played. Our excitement grew, knowing what fun we would have together!

Isaiah and I enjoyed sharing an apple on the bus to Novgorod, which happened to be perhaps the oldest bus that I've ever ridden on. I only wish that I had a picture to show you!


Isaiah always enjoys being with Lydia. They can entertain each other for a long time, and it's quite amusing to anyone who happens to be present.


Do we have a budding photographer in this cute little 2 year old? Lydia got to take some pictures while we waited for our supper.

Architecture, specifically Arches
Novgorod is full of amazing architecture here's just a sample of one of the arches that we saw. A small preview of the post for the trip. :)

Isaiah loves loving on us! I don't think I can describe how wonderful it feels to get hugs and kisses from our Little Man, especially when it's all his own idea!

Apples and Almonds
Isaiah has discovered that he loves nuts, and almonds seem to go well with apples for a great snack for him. No creativity in the snack department this week. After our trip, I had a lesson and then needed to get ready for a Bible study at our place. Isaiah helped me, of course, but I must confess that my creativity was, um, absent when it came to more fun activities for Tot School.

Traveling with Little Man can be quite an adventure in and of itself. With all the extra things we have to carry for him (meds, cathing supplies, etc) a backpack is our best friend. We are constantly trying to find a better way to travel, part of our learning experience as parents with a child with special needs. We have found it helpful to keep a general checklist for packing, something I'm sure that many of you do. When traveling in Russia, especially in the winter, we have some special challenges: How in the world do you find a clean, warm place that also has a flat surface and place to wash your hands with at least some privacy for stripping down your child from all his layers and cathing him. Oh the adventures that we have! Any traveling tips that you'd care to share?

Check out what other little people are up to at 1+1+1=1.