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Friday, July 10, 2015

Toddler Summer School: Dinosaur Week

I have to be honest.  I slacked off the first few weeks of "summer-stay-at-home-mommy".  Don't get me wrong, I played with Aidan, read him every book he wanted, as many time as he wanted, cuddled and giggled.  I has just to tired to be purposeful.  Running around after 18 kindergarteners, as well as your own toddler for 9 months can really drain your battery.  Also, living in an apartment with limited activity options poses its own set of challenges.
But, I'm happy to announce - I'M BACK!!!

So, since Aidan is all boy, through and through, (everything has a sound effect - usually a loud one), and with the new Jurassic World movie coming out (not that Aidan is going to see it for a very long time), I thought Dinosaurs would be a fun 1st theme.

Firstly, we went to the MOSH, here in Jacksonville.  And I can tell you, I'm in love!  There were so many hands-on activities, buttons to push, and sounds to listen to.  Right now, they have an awesome Dinosaur exhibit.  I thought maybe Aidan would be scared of them - but not my little daredevil!  When one of the mechanic dinosaurs roared at him, he promptly roared right back.

Next: books.
If you've even perused my blog, you know that words can't describe  how much I love books.  Especially children's books.
Whenever my school has a book fair, Dan buys my class a book or two.  Since we knew we were having a little boy, Dan has picked one up for him too.
When we were pregnant, he got him, Rawr by Todd H. Doodler.  It's an adorable book about how "rawr" really just means "hello" in dinosaur, and people really shouldn't be scared of them.

This year, we got him My Dinosaurs!: A Read and Play Book.  It is such a cute book!  On each page, it talks about a dinosaur, and then they have to match the puzzle piece to the page.  I would love to see more books like this - with shapes, and colors... 


Aidan and I took a walk to our Target, and found this little gem in the $1 aisle!


Now, on to crafts and activities.
I saw an idea on pinterest, of making a dinosaur out of the letter "D".  So I cut out all the pieces, glued on the "D", and then let Aidan glue on the other pieces.  Honestly, it was really hard for me to let him do it on his own, and I may have guided his hand, but I really tried to let him glue the pieces where he wanted to.



For another activity, I borrowed an idea from when we visited the MOSH.  I used Crayola Air Dry Clay, and made bones.  
Once they dried, I placed them on a platter, and poured some sand on them (that I had left over from when I made a sand bowl), I gave Aidan an old tooth brush, and let him "excavate" them.


I was a little worried it would be too difficult for him, or he'd put everything in his mouth (we're still in that phase), but he LOVED it!  Which made it all totally worth it!
Lastly, media.
In this day an age, there are so many resources available!  Of course, it can't be the only element, and I do try to limit Aidan's screen time.  But there are many educational options out there.

For example, I found an app called "Archeologist".  It's really fun, and kids as young as Aidan (with a little help) can enjoy it!  There are four free levels.  In each level, you dig up the bones of a dinosaur by tapping on the dirt.  Once you find all the bones, you assemble the bones to create the dinosaur.

If you have Netflix, there's also the kids' show Dinosaur Train, which is a little old for Aidan, but he doesn't mind it.

So, that has been our DINO-riffic first week of Toddler Summer School!  We had lots of fun, had "T-rex" piggy-back-rides, roared at each other and chomped down on chicken nuggets, like a bunch of carnivores.

Do you have any fun dino ideas?  Any dinosaur books you love?


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  2. Replies
    1. Thanks, mama! Can't wait for you guys to get here!