Friday, August 31, 2012

Max “Reads” Chicka Chicka Boom Boom


(If it seems that I’m ignoring Alex, it’s because he was specifically told that I was reading this book so we could record MAX, and that I would read another book with Alex in just a moment…)

{WEEKEND ONLY FREEBIE} Apples! Apples! Preschool Pack


Snatch this one up QUICKLY!  It’s only free through Monday, September 3rd!

{CLICK HERE} to go directly to Teachers Notebook to download this pack.

apples ad 

On September 4, 2012 the price will be set at $1.25.  Get it for free while you can!

This is a 25 page pack with 20 different fun and educational activities for ages 3 – 6.

You’ll work on things like prewriting skills, letter recognition, handwriting, counting, color, beginning sounds, size sequencing, and more.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

GoodNites Giveaway Winner

Congratulations to Katrina, the winner of the GoodNites Giveaway!  I’ve sent you an e-mail at the address you listed in Rafflecopter. 

Thanks to all who entered the contest!

GoodNites Be Educated (Girl) Kit

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

I Was Wrong ;)

As we were unloading groceries earlier today, Alex asked me why there was a picture of Sponge Bob on the box. I told him, "There's a little Sponge Bob toy in the box."

When I came back to the kitchen with another bag of groceries, there stood Alex with the cereal box ripped open. He looked at me and said, "Mom, you were WRONG! There's CEREAL in here!"

4 year olds are SO literal sometimes! :)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Back To School SALE


at Little Monkey Printables

now through September 4, 2012

Click on the image below to visit the shop!
TN logo

As always, you can get ONE FREE PACK
by purchasing 3 items in one transaction!

After your purchase, I’ll e-mail you at your PayPal address
within 24 hours so you can select your freebie!

Friday, August 24, 2012

MFW K Creation Unit

{CLICK HERE} to view the rest of our MFW K unit posts.
{CLICK HERE} to view our post explaining WHY we chose MFW K for our family.

{Day 1 has its own post…CLICK HERE to see it}

My Father’s World K’s Creation Unit has very short days.  I’ve seen some complaints about that on the MFW message boards, but quite honestly, I find it JUST RIGHT!  For little ones who haven’t had much structured learning yet, this is PERFECT! 
They may desire more, or they may be ready to finish after 30 – 40 minutes of learning time.  Whatever the case, it’s such a GENTLE way to introduce a young child to a more structured learning time.  I could hug Marie Hazell (the MFW author) for starting the program off in such a sweet, gentle manner!
For the record:
  • Alex is 4 years and 8 months old as we begin.
  • Max, who is just turning 3, is tagging along when interested…and wandering away when he isn’t.
Day 2
  • Alex did the calendar number and pointed/counted to 21 (today’s date: 8/21/2012)
  • Alex asked Max to add the straw to our hundreds chart today, so Max wandered on over from the toy shelves.
  • We sang the Days of the Week song, and Max used a popsicle stick to point to the days of the week.
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(Yes, we are wearing our pajamas…I had a sore throat & was feeling a tad bit lazy!)
  • We sang the ABC song while Alex pointed to the correct letters. 
  • He then used an O-shaped magnet to find all the letters shaped like circles – his own idea.
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  • We sang the alphabet song again while I flipped through the MFW alphabet flashcards.
  • We set out A, B, C, and D cards.  Alex used a popsicle stick to “drop” the O-shaped magnet on the letter that I called out – his idea again ;)
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  • The kids were anxious to head to the table and do today’s creation book pages.  I had precut “sky” from shiny, light blue paper.  They glued the sky onto the sheet of dark blue construction paper (water).
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  • Then they colored their #2 pictures and glued cotton ball clouds into the sky.
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  • We left all our sticky-gluey pages to dry, and I’ll go upstairs tonight to add these pages to their creation books.
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  • We prayed to thank God for the light & dark, the skies and seas.
  • We came downstairs for a snack of “clouds” (marshmallows & popcorn) and “water” (a little bit of blueberry flavored Mio in water cups).
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Day 3
Alex and Max *RAN* upstairs today when I announced it was time to do school.  It makes my heart happy to know that Alex is so excited for this!  We tried something with a little bit of formality last fall, and Alex either cried or pouted every day for a week.  I knew he wasn’t ready, so we quickly backed off.  This year, I know he’s ready…he’s loving it!
  • Before I could even suggest that we begin with calendar, Alex pulled open the closet door and plopped on the floor.  (Our calendar hangs inside the closet door so baby sister doesn’t pull off all the numbers!)
  • He immediately flipped over today’s number, announced that it was twenty-two, and proceeded to point and count from 1 – 22.  Then he figured out the day of the week and I reminded him that it is the month of August.August2012 239
  • Alex put another straw in our hundreds chart, and then we counted to 3 for our three days of school.
  • We watched the Days of the Week video on YouTube, and Alex sang along while Max watched.
  • After that, we watched “This Is My Father’s World” by GoFish.
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Here’s a 13 second video clip of Alex singing the days of the week
(and Max being cute…)
  • Alex grabbed a popsicle stick and the ABC chart so we could sing the ABC song.  I’m telling you, he’s taking charge!  Three days in, and he’s got the routine all figured out :)August2012 245
  • We reviewed what God created on Day 1 & 2, and then we read to find out what God created on Day 3.  I love the way that “God Made It For You” sticks with the Biblical truths of creation, yet words in a way that is very appealing to a preschooler.
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  • Max was already waiting anxiously at the table to begin today’s picture page.  I had cut everything out in advance, and the boys glued and put down stickers wherever they chose.
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     Alex’s page…
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coloring their number 3s…August2012 252
  • After a super-quick review of the three days, we prayed and then headed downstairs for our snack.  Today we had chocolate pudding cups with crushed oreos on top to represent the LAND that God made.
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(psst ~ I  *do* dress my children!  Alex is going through a phase of pretending his pajamas are dress-up clothes, so he “gets dressed” by putting on different pajamas.  I guess he’s Lightning McQueen today…)
Day 4
Today was Max’s 3rd birthday!  Alex turned over the calendar number, and then Max got to add the “Happy Birthday” number cover!  He was SO PROUD!  Alex & I sang “Happy Birthday” to Max, and he just beamed with pride.
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(If you’re very observant, you’ll notice that we did not do school on August 23rd…I babysit once a week, so we are skipping Thursdays for now.)
Alex took charge, leading us in counting to 24 and singing the Days of The Week song.  After that, Max *INSISTED* that we watch the YouTube video of the Days of the Week song…TWICE.  Alex sang it perfectly, while Max belted out a cute little version that went something like this:  “Sunday, Thoysday, Fri-dah-day, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, SAT-AH-Day!”
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We also, at Alex’s request, watched the This Is My Father’s World video.  It’s amusing to me, as he was totally bored by it the other day.
Alex seems to be taking turns with adding straws, as he asked Max to do it today.
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We learned that God created the sun, moon, and stars on the fourth day.   In a great moment of irony, we received a Glow In The Dark Space Stickers sets yesterday in a Prize Package from GoodNites (for a blog giveaway).  That was really convenient for doing our art project!
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Max (3) did an awesome job of gluing on his sun!
I wish I’d gotten a picture of all his stars –
he stuck them on in one REALLY long line!
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We ended by singing the Alphabet Song and learning the A-A-Apple Song.  There are YouTube videos for that one, too, by the way…who knew YouTube would be such a great resource!
I planned to make sunshines out of orange slices & blueberries (for a smiley face) as a snack today, but sadly, the oranges were getting moldy.  (ICK!)  Instead, we’ll have sunshine sandwiches with (dyed-yellow) cream cheese, carrot stick rays, and raisin smiley faces for lunch.  (I’m writing this while waiting for the baby to wake from her nap so we can do lunch!)
I’d hoped to put days 2 – 10 in one post, but it’s just getting TOO LONG!  I think it’s time to post this & give the remaining days their own post! :)

Our GoodNites Prize Pack

Our GoodNites Prize Pack was delivered last night by UPS.  Alex tore into that box as if it was Christmas morning!  Look at all this great stuff:

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It’s not too late to enter for a chance to win.  {CLICK HERE} to go to the giveaway post.  You can enter ONCE PER DAY by sharing the link to the giveaway post on your Facebook status, and you can also earn ONE entry by leaving a comment on the post and ONE entry by following Our Little Monkeys on Facebook.

Alex is very anxious to do the Glow Explosion art this afternoon while the little ones are napping, and the boys loved listening to the Chicka Chicka Boom Boom CD as they fell asleep last night.  But the best part will come as no surprise to any parent:

the confetti in the packaging

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It got a whole lot worse before it got better.  It took the boys & me about 20 minutes to pick it all up before bedtime last night!  This stuff was EVERYWHERE!  It was worth it, though, to listen to the boys and their happy giggles!

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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

{GIVEAWAY} GoodNites “Be Educated” Kit

If you have little ones, you’re gonna LOVE this giveaway! 
Take a look at this fun stuff!
GoodNites Be Educated (Boy) Kit
Recently I was approached by GoodNites about their new campaign to educate parents about bedwetting.  They offered me the opportunity to share a little information with my readers, and they are also offering a generous giveaway package to one lucky reader! 
While we are blessed that Alex adjusted easily to dry nights, not all parents can say the same.  In fact, according to information from a new GoodNites infographic, 40% of parents with children between the ages of 4 – 6 say their child still wets the bed once a week.   With one potty training child and one still in diapers, our family may be thankful for this information in the next few years!
{Click on the image below to view as a full-size .pdf file}GoodNites_bedwetting 
Many potty trained children still struggle with bladder control while sleeping.  As they get older, a PullUp might not be large enough or absorbant enough.  I found it interesting to learn that GoodNites are 40% more absorbant than disposable training pants.  That fact might be helpful to some of those of you who are tired of changing wet sheets!
GoodNites are meant to work best when children are lying down, and they are also designed to have a soft and quiet feel.  I imagine that prevents some embarrassing situations at sleepovers!  GoodNites come in two sizes, S/M for clothing sizes 4 – 8 and L /XL for clothing sizes 8 – 14.  You can find more at the GoodNites website.  While you’re there, print a $1 coupon!
Currently, their size S/M comes in a SpiderMan print.  I don’t know about your little guys, but my 4 year old is FASCINATED with SpiderMan right now!  The girls’ size S/M comes in a Tinkerbell print, which I’m sure will appeal to preschool girls!
GoodNites would like to offer one lucky reader the opportunity to win a fun “Be Educated” kit.  Take a look at the pictures below!  Don’t these look fun?
{“Be Educated” Kit for boys}
GoodNites Be Educated (Boy) Kit
{“Be Educated” Kit for girls}
GoodNites Be Educated (Girl) Kit

If you cannot see the Rafflecopter below, refresh your browser or try a different browser/mobile device. If you still cannot see the Rafflecopter, you may enter by leaving a comment *sharing one thing you've learned* about GoodNites or bedwetting. BE SURE TO INCLUDE YOUR NAME AND E-MAIL ADDRESS if entering without using the Rafflecopter. Thanks!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

A Few Quick Freebies

My Name Through The Year
These pages are designed to record your child’s name/handwriting throughout the school year.  That way, you have a neat little record of the improvements as your child develops throughout the school year.  I didn’t think it was all that special, but I’ve had LOTS of request for it after posting our first day of MFW K.
- this has been updated for the 2015-2016 year -  

Calendar Toppers
These are approximately 3.5 inches tall & 10.5 inches wide.  (I never measured.)
This file is far from perfect. I was just making it for our own use, so I didn’t take time to clean up the fuzzy “stuff”or give it a more professional feel.  The calendar headers are fine once cut out & laminated. 

There are days of the week (3x3 squares) somewhere on my computer, but I can’t find the file!
august september-1

Monday, August 20, 2012

First Day of MFW K

{CLICK HERE} to view the rest of our MFW K unit posts.
{CLICK HERE} to view our post explaining WHY we chose MFW K for our family.

Today was Alex’s first day with My Father’s World Kindergarten.  It starts off so gently, and it took us less than an hour to complete.  Before we got started, I had the kids pose with signs of what they are working on this year.  Jensyn’s just says “I’m Cute”…perhaps it should have said “I’m Trouble”, but I was nice ;)
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Max – age 3                                     Alex – 4.5                                        Jensyn – 16 months
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Mama’s First Lesson: NEVER plan your first day of something new on a Monday after a extra busy weekend.  We had a family reunion and Max’s birthday party…so today we had overtired kids who really just wanted to play with the new toys.  It worked out to be a good morning, but these “outtakes” of Alex should give you a good idea of how our morning started!
     pouting                                      crying                                          smiling through tears
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Keith had the idea to rearrange the playroom (bonus room over the garage) a bit to make a school area.  We had the calendar wall , but there was no good work space upstairs.  We divided the room into two separate areas; We’ll try this & see how it works for us.
Now there’s a family room side and a school side.
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Here’s the wall along the left side, where we keep all the toys:
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    Here’s the school table & our (messy) shelves.August2012 195
Here’s the calendar wall…the calendar is inside the closet door so the baby isn’t always pulling off all the numbers.
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We wisely waited until Jensyn was sleeping before getting started.  The mailman brought a package FIVE MINUTES before we got started (phew!), and Alex was excited to rip into it!  He discovered “God Made It For You!”, a neat book that details each day of creation that was highly recommended by several people.  We read about the first day of creation from this book.
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We did a calendar time, turning over today’s number, finding out what day it is, finding out what month it is, and pointing & counting from 1 – 20  (today’s date number).  Then Alex added a straw to our hundreds/tens/ones chart for our first day.  (He’s been waiting to do this since we bought the straws a few weeks ago!)
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We watched a YouTube video of the song “This Is My Father’s World” on the Kindle.
(To be honest, Alex was bored by it…he prefers the Go Fish version…but we’ll probably watch it once a week because this version of the song & the photos shown in the video are so pretty!)
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Max wandered over when we sang the ABC song, and then the boys took turns pointing to A or B…which are the only two letters to be worked on for the first day.
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After that, I gave each boy a small block, and they took turns placing their block on the letter that I named.  WAY too easy for Alex, but still hard for Max.
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I gave Max the option of joining us at the table to make the first page of the Creation Book.  I did the cutting for him, but he had fun gluing.
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Alex did his own cutting…although he purposely cut in the wrong place so that he could have the special privilege of using tape to fix his “mistake” ;)
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Before heading downstairs for a surprise snack (I’d set it up when they were already upstairs…), I asked Alex to do one last thing: write his name on the August line.  We’ll have him write his name once a month to record how his writing changes throughout this year.
Edited to add: lots of people have e-mailed me about this page.  It’s not an original idea, but the page was my creation.  If you’d like a copy, you can download it here:
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We prayed to thank God for creating light and dark and for giving us a nice first day of school, then we headed downstairs for the much-anticipated snack.
Alex caught on REALLY quickly to WHY we were having oreos & milk.  He took one look at his plate and said, “OREOS!  Just like LIGHT and DARK!  And MILK – it’s like the LIGHT!”
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I certainly won’t document every day with such detail, but I thought it would be fun to record his very first day.  I’ll save the rest until we’ve completed Days 1 – 10 of creation!
Psst…if you’re using MFW K or following along because you’re thinking about using MFW K, I’d love to hear from you!  Please leave a comment, share your blog link in the comments, or send me an e-mail ~ I’d enjoy keeping in touch!