International Mud Day 2012, Clubhouse Style

We did have big outdoor plans to celebrate International Mud Day today. We had a nice big space cleared, ready to make some mud in. A mudslide, a mud kitchen and even a mud river were on the agenda. That was until we woke up this morning and it was 90 degrees before it was even 8:00am. With an expected high of 113, there really was no way we were going to pull it off. Yes, it's a dry heat... and that is exactly what our mud would have been too, dry.

Plan B was simple, still involved mud, and we got to incorporate one of our favorite books.


Readathon 2012: Arthur Does Yoga

For week 2 of the Memetales Readathon 2012 we read the book Arthur. Arthur is a brown dog in a pet store who is tired of watching all of the other animals get adopted before him, so he decides to attempt to be the other animals and see if that works. As soon as we read this book, I knew how to incorporate it at the Clubhouse.


Clubhouse Showdown: Goop vs. Gak

We have decided to have a few showdowns this week in the Clubhouse Classroom. This is the first of the battles...


My Clubhouse Kid: Motion Sickness

"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page."                                                                                                   -St. Augustine

Sounds lovely, doesn't it?

Tell it to a Mother who gets puked on every time she turns the page.

First time it happened my son was 18 months old, and I thought it had something to do with what he had had for lunch that day. Second time, I thought maybe the milk he drank was bad. Third time, while I was pulling over to start cleaning us all up again, it dawned on me. This was happening every time we drove out of our small town. Which meant any car ride over 20-25 minutes. Which meant, he was "carsick".

I found out a week later after an episode on a quick flight to California, that "carsick" wasn't quite going to cover it.

Motion sickness.


Clubhouse Themes

I was recently asked how I felt about themes. Well when it comes to party planning, we love a good theme. Once a theme is in place, everything else can fall into place. From decorations to food, from games to crafts, a theme makes it easy to plan accordingly. Start your planning far enough in advance and you can collect things along the way. Take your time to scour the internet for the best prices on theme matching accessories. Find homemade ways (can anyone say Pinterest?) to bring the theme to life. Ask me to plan a party without a theme, and I'd be lost.

That brings us to this past April, when my baby boy turned 3. By this age he knew all about parties and themes and was ready with his answers before I even asked the questions.

"I want a Toy Story 3 party Momma, because I'm gonna be 3. I want to be Buzz, and I want my friend Sammy to be Woody. I want a cake, a statue cake, with Buzz, Woody and Lotso on it, and I want it to be strawberry... because Lotso smells like strawberries."

I'm not kidding, he really said all of that.


Readathon2012: Clubhouse Ducklings

This week Memetales Readathon2012 is all about animals! There were a few books on the app to choose from, and after reading them all my Son chose "The Five Little Ducklings" and said,

"Let's do duck stuff."
So duck stuff it was.


Clubhouse Play Dough: Just Add "Dirt"

During play dough pledge week it only made sense we took one of our favorite paint recipes, Dirt Paint, and added a few extra ingredients to make it into play dough.

Clubhouse Readers: Summertime Book Clubs

One thing I am certain we can all agree on is that reading is an essential part of Early Childhood Education. Actually, it is an essential part of all Education, from Preschool through Graduate School and beyond. Sure technology has changed the way we are able to read, but the bottom line remains the same, reading is fundamental, and can also be a lot of FUN :)

This Summer we have joined up with a variety of reading programs online, as well as locally. Here' s a brief summary of a few, for those of you looking to ensure you keep your children reading throughout the Summer months!

Join Readathon 2012PBS Kids and Memetales have teamed up to provide us with Readathon 2012! Kicking off today, this program has not only brought together some amazing bloggers to participate, but it also provides you with access to free books online and through the Memetales app... AND it's all for an amazing cause. The program runs for 6 weeks, and each week is a different theme.
To read more about the program and how to get started, click here.
*Note: Fit Kids Clubhouse is a "screen free" Preschool, so we will not be reading the books online in class. My son will have access to the online books during his screen time, and together he and I will incorporate the books and themes into our classroom activities weekly.*

Next on our list


Clubhouse Play Dough: Just Add Crayons

Place hand on table, palm side up. 
I do so solemnly swear to play, with play dough, all week, 
in ways I have never played with play dough before. 

If I do not abide by this pledge, 
take away my rights to use Flour and Salt forever.

...and that's how our week started. 

By the way, the aforementioned blogs didn't really make me say that. Just in case you were wondering.

Our first play dough concoction of the week,


Clubhouse ABC's

In the past I have been asked how I teach Preschoolers ABC's, letter recognition, and ultimately writing their name. The answer is simple. Here at the Clubhouse, letters are everywhere, and the Clubhouse Kids manage to teach themselves.

Sure, I help them a long.

That's what I'm here for, right?

I start with a basket.


Clubhouse Truth: Preschool Science Matters

It started with the weather forecast. 100+ degrees every day this week, for the first time this year. We go outside every day, so it was time to start adjusting to the Summertime heat. Enter, ice play. Simple, fun, and although the prep time lasts longer than the ice does around here, the Clubhouse Kids always love it.

Speaking of prep time, I turned to my very own kid for help with this one. He was more than happy to help fill muffin tins, balloons, heart shaped molds and small cups with water, food coloring, glitter, water beads, small letters, etc.

While we were working he says,
"Momma, this is a lot of water we're going to turn into a lot of ice!"

My reply, without even really thinking, was
"You're right. We're taking a lot of liquid and turning it into a lot of solid!"


and so it begins.


Clubhouse Tray: Water Bead Style

We have a blue tray in the Clubhouse Classroom, and the activities on the tray are ever changing.

Whatever is on the tray is a one kid operation, and the Clubhouse Kids are really good about that. They like knowing that once the tray is in their hands, it's all theirs, so they take turns accordingly. Yes, even in Preschool.. it can be done!

The tray activities are not only one-kid operations, they are also usually very meticulous activities. Sorting small items. Lacing beads. Tongs. Patterns. Gardens made of "crayon dust" with small scoops and sticks. The tray is about details, and often requires precise movements. All in the name of working on those fine motor skills. The Clubhouse Kids can incorporate anything else from the classroom when they are working on the tray. Actually, I love when they do that and I often place the tray in a part of the classroom that is close to other objects I think they may like to incorporate with that particular tray.

So what do water beads have to do with fine motor skills?
Aren't they for big, squishy, bouncy sensory play?

Well just take a look at that pincer grip.


Clubhouse Spiderwebs

"She was very busy spinning her web..."
"The Very Busy Spider" spins her web to catch the fly.

"At my house we use the fly swatter to catch flies..."


Another Clubhouse Kid comment that inspires an activity...