We are constructing, counting, balancing, communicating, and so much more at snack time today!
We are getting VERY excited for Halloween to get here! Today I set out some paper, black jack-o-lantern face cut-outs, wiggle eyes, and paint. The kids really got creative and made some awesome creatures, monsters, and jack-o-lanterns!
We had such a great time harvesting in our little garden this morning....and then ate almost every bit of it for lunch! Mmmm, everything tastes better when you grow it yourself! :)
Facebook has made it way too easy for me to NOT post here! If you are on FB and haven't found us there yet, be sure to check out Hilary's Home Daycare there, too! It is so much easier for me to add a quick photo there so I do it a bit more often.
Anyway, today is our very last day before school starts here and we lose our school-aged friends! We are going to miss them SO MUCH!!! But, for today, we are just focusing on having one more fun day together!
We got out some paint and various painting tools: stamps, rollers, brushes, etc. and made a big group painting. I also had some sheets of paper available for those who wanted to make something to take home. They painted, and painted, and painted some more so I think it was a successful morning! :)
We have caterpillars! The eggs that we watched a Black Swallowtail butterfly lay in the garden a few days ago have hatched and the little caterpillars have begun eating the leaves. Hopefully our weather will stay mild and be better suited to their growth than last year's hot summer. If so, within a couple weeks we should have a few big caterpillars to catch so we can watch them transform!
...And, we finally got our first taste out of our garden! There were lots of beautiful snap peas ready for us to pick today! We learned how to tell if the pod is ready to be picked (fat, not skinny!), and we learned the best way to pick the peas so that the whole plant doesn't come with! None of the peas actually made it to the house, though...they were just to delicious to save! :)
We got to watch a Black Swallowtail butterfly lay some eggs in the garden today! And so the cycle begins again! We are all excited for these eggs to turn into tiny little caterpillars, so we can watch them grow and change as we have for several years now. I think this might be the first time we have gotten to see the egg portion of the life cycle though, so that was new and exciting. If you would like to read more about our adventures in caterpillar-raising, click here!
Today was a great day to play with anything cool so we got out some colored ice cubes that I had been saving.
The kids had fun laying them out on some of our tree rounds, watching the colors melt together, noticing how quickly they melted in the sun,
...burying them in the sand,
...and even adding them into their mud mixtures!
Our cold, wet spring has put us a few weeks behind, but we finally got MOST of our daycare garden planted today and had lots of fun doing it! We still have a few things to add over the next couple of days because I wanted to make sure those that weren't here today can get in on this too. Today we planted carrots, peas, green beans, corn, sunflowers, and some tomato plants. We still hope to get in our lettuce, spinach, pumpkins, a couple more tomato plants, and some potatoes in the next couple of days.
I have had so much fun learning right along with the kids! This will be our first year trying potatoes, so we'll see how that goes and what we learn from that! :)
I also set out a box of dirt with some of last year's leftover seeds and gardening tools for the kids to play around with and they really enjoyed that, especially after we had finished the "real" planting.
Hopefully the forecasted rain will help out our new garden and we will get some warm weather to help it grow, too. I really love watching the kids see their seeds grow and getting to harvest their vegetables, too!
I'm a little behind, but have been wanting to share what we did for Mother's Day this year! I think the kids really had a lot of fun with it, and so did I! Together as a group, we mixed up our own bath salts to give to mom...
in both lavender and chocolate scents! I got the "recipe" here. Whether making them or using them, bath salts are a great sensory activity for kids! A great texture, and so many scent possibilities!
We also made our own soaps. The kids loaded a bowl full of glycerin soap bars, and I melted them down in the microwave. Then they added lavender scent and the colors of their choice. After it had cooled and set, the really fun part started! The kids used cookie cutters, a wood block, and a hammer to pound out flower and leaf shaped soaps!
I hope the moms enjoy their gifts as much as we enjoyed the process of making them! :)
In case anyone has noticed the lack of posts here lately, here are the beautiful tiny little toes that have been keeping me on mine! :) Our group has been enjoying and adjusting to having two infants and we are very busy! Hopefully we will find our new rhythm and I will get back to sharing our fun with all of you soon!