Thursday, July 31, 2008

Going to India for vacation

Myself and Dheekshu are travelling to India today for a month vacation. Last time, when we went to India, she was 5 months old and we came back when she was 8 months old. She was sleeping whole throughout the journey on both ways. So we did not have any problems. This time I think I may need to engage her for sometime during the journey.

A place to showcase

I was thinking to put some of Dheekshu's art on display. I removed our photographs and placed her art. First one is Marble painting and second one is car wheel.


Today Dheekshu was playing with her magnetic shapes. She was counting them when she placed one by one. I was quite excited to see her counting. She counted correctly through 5 and again started counting the same shapes again saying 6,7. Then she stopped for a while and started again from 1 and stopped at 5 and said only 5 shapes. I was happy to see her counting correctly.

Fishing - Not really

Yesterday we played with net. First I let Dheekshu play with water for sometime. She was observing that she was not able to catch water with net.
Then I placed 2 to 3 plastic animals in the water and asked her to "Fish" the animals through the net. Dheekshu was quite amazed to see that she could catch animals through net and not water. Then I introduced 2 small sized pebbles to make the activity a bit complex. She did that pretty good.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Finger Painting

I was planning for finger painting for quite sometime as Dheekshu loves to paint her body. I got a receipe for preparing finger paint.

4 tbs of all purpose flour
2 tbs of cold water
1 cup of boiling water
Tempera paint.

I substitued Corn starch with 2 times all purpose flour and food colouring with tempera paint.
Dissolve all purpose flour with cold water to make a paste. Then add boiling water to the mixure. Then add the paint according to the colour required.

I made Dheekshu to pour paint and mix. She loved the colour transistion from Red to Pink. She was saying the red colour turned into orange before becoming pink. She wanted to have pink colour and so we stopped adding more paint.

I gave different variety of paper like - Aluminum Foil, computer paper, construction paper in different colours, newspaper etc..Seeing the mess created I moved the activity to outdoor.

Once she lost interest, I poured the paint to a squeeze bottle (old body wash bottle). She did not like that as she had to apply more pressure to make the paint come out.
Seeing the mess at the end, I was very gald that I moved the activity outdoor. It was a fun activity for more than 45 mins.

Foil painting

We did foil painting by mixing tempera paint with dish washing liquid and Aluminum Foil. If we mix dish washing liquid with paint, we could see some bubbles in the paint and the texture of the paint was also different. Dheekshu loved it very much. I gave her some brushes to paint. But she preffered painting using hands. She rubbed very hard on the foil to bring some bubbles. After that she started painting on her body as usual. She enjoyed the activity for around 30 mins.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Another salty water colour

We got a new glue bottle for Dheekshu. She wanted to use it as soon as we came back from shopping . I gave her the paper and the glue bottle. She drew some markings with the glue. That remind me about the salty water colour we did once. I wanted to try that once again by myself as it looked very interesting. I sprinkled the salt and started painting with thin acrylic paint. First I touched the brush on the salt and I could see a bit of salt coming off in the brush. Then I dropped the paint from the brush by having the brush a bit above the salt. It was too good to watch the paint spreading on the salt. The output was very good and I loved it. May be I will try this with Dheekshu again.

While I was doing the painting, I gave her tempera paint just to have my own time. She was very excited to paint herself.

Matching upper case and lower case

Dheekshu is comfortable identifying upper case letters. However yet to learn about lower case letters. I was little worried whether she may get confused by the concept of upper and lower case. So to make it simple, I took alphabet flash cards and the lower case letters I created using Felt. The flash cards have both upper and lower case letters. She had to match the upper case letters of the flash cards with the lower case letters of the felt. I started with letters like 'c' 'k' 'm' 'u' 's' in which the both upper and lower case letters look similar. Dheekshu was not very comfortable or interested. She did it for one or two letters and said "done". OK.. This activity is postponed for now.

We got the books "Mouse Paint" and "Mouse Shapes" both by Ellen Stoll Walsh from our library. Dheekshu loved Mouse paint. The mouse dancing in Paint puddle was really cute and it teaches about mixing colours too. As soon as I completed reading the book, she ran to take her paint and started mixing the colours and verified. We both love the book.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Tearing paper

Though tearing paper is the former step of cutting paper, I introduced Scissors to Dheekshu first without knowing tearing paper is very difficult. Yesterday, I gave her a piece of paper to tear. It was a bit challenging for her. She applied a lot of pressure to tear. Usually she enjoys cutting paper for atleast 10 mins. But she got bored with in 2 to 3 mins. May be we will practice everyday :-)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Remembering things

Once we got "Painting Transfer" kit. We need to place the picture on the kit on a surface and by just rubbing, the picture gets transferred to the surface. To try it on a surface, I used one of Dheekshu's toys. It worked great. From the time onwards, she used to rub on the painting every time she uses that particular toy with the blocks like what I did. For the past 6 months, we did not touch that toy. Yesterday when she took out the toy, she started rubbing on the painting. We were quite amazed to see her doing this. She remembers even my 2 mins action. That forced me to act properly every time as the action may be reproduced some other time :-).

Two months back, I drew a cat and duck on her magnetic doddle pro and asked her to draw a line from the cat to duck just to make her understand the concept of mazes. She was not interested and we stopped it with in a minute. Today she asked me to draw a dog. I drew a dog (my version of dog) and a cat. Immediately she drew a line between the cat and dog. I could not understand why she was doing that. She thought for a second and asked me to draw a cat and a duck. Once I did, she drew a line from the cat to the duck. I was quite amazed to see her remembering even those 2 animals I drew on that day even though the life of the activity was only one minute. That remind me about absorbent mind said by Marai Montessori.

Picture matching

We did this activity a bit different today. I spread out the pictures on the floor and showed the matching picture once and said its name from a different room. Dheekshu has to go to the next room to get the matching picture from the floor. She enjoyed this activity. She did pretty well. She went wrong with Mouse and Hedgehog as both their faces are a bit similar. First we started with 2 pictures to explain the concept and moved on to 5 and then 10 cards. While doing 10 cards, she got bored. So we were not able to do with the entire 16 cards. We will do this once again. We will do this activity with colours also.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Spooning became Grasping

We had already done spooning with beads sometimes back. This time I wanted to do spooning using Macaroni as it may be a bit tricky. But Dheekshu did not even touch the spoon and started transferring using her hand. She was transferring one macaroni at a time. She liked this activity very much that she wanted to do again and again. Once the transfer is complete, she poured back to the first container and started the transfer from the beginning. I think we may do this activity frequently here after.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Various Activities

I got counting sheets and matching tiles from Montessorimom. I pasted the tiles to the index card for durability. Dheekshu was able to count and identify the matching tiles. She learnt about Zero today. But within few minutes, she lost interest. May it is too much for her. We will try this again after few days.

Since Dheekshu is very comfortable with Peg puzzles, I wanted to make the activity a bit challenging for her. I gave her 3 puzzle boards - Shapes, transportation and animals. It was amazing to see her finishing them in minutes.

She loves the beads stringing activity very much. She used to loose interest very soon. But this time she was concentrating for quite sometime on this activity. It has become one of her favorite activity.

Contrast colour

While talking about colours, I got this idea of giving black and white crayons and black and white paper to Dheekshu. First she wrote with white crayon on white paper and said that she could not write in the paper. Then I asked her to write on the black paper. She was quite happy to see her writings. Then I explained her that the white crayon markings will not be visible in white paper. In the same way, I made her write with black crayon on black paper. Unfortunately, her dark scribbling was visible on the black paper. She got confused. She was not expecting the markings. I explained to her that the shade of the paper was a bit lighter than her writing and hence visible. I am not sure whether she understood that.

Monday, July 14, 2008


We tried transferring water through dropper again. Dheekshu found out a easy way to transfer by removing the back end of the dropper and using only the main body of the dropper :-). She was quite happy about her "discovery".

Dheekshu is very comfortable with cutting but can't in straight lines. So I made her cut a waste coupon book along the dotted lines. She had some difficulties as the paper was very thick. We will try with some thin paper again.

Straw painting

We tried straw painting. Drop few drops of tempera paint onto the paper and blow the paint using a straw. The paint was not flowing first as the paint was thick. We added few drops of water to the paper itself and blew again. The paint rolled over the paint and it was fun. Then I added 2 tbs of dish washing liquid to the paint in a separate cup and we made bubbles on the paper using the straw. Dheekshu had some difficulties in making the bubbles with the straw but was able to make bubbles using the bubble wand.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Salt and Sugar

I wanted to try a tasting activity. I kept two cups each of sugar and salt. I asked Dheekshu to taste salt first. It was a big mistake. After that, she did not want to taste any of the cups. Then I tasted the sugar around 4 times and telling her that it was not salt. Then she tasted sugar and identified it correctly as sugar. We did sorting using the taste. After the activity, she wanted to eat the whole cup of sugar. It became a bit difficult to remove the cups from her. I am planning to cook similar items differing only by taste and do the sorting again later.
We did crayon rubbing using a leaf. Just stick a leaf securely on a table. Place a white sheet over the leaf and secure it. Rub using the side of the crayon to get the impression of the leaf on the paper. Dheekshu applied a lot of pressure and scribbled and did not get a nice impression. Lost interest. So we tried painting using the leaf as the brush. She was doing that for sometime and decided to paint with the hand rather than leaf. She enjoyed the activity.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Salty water colour

The inspirtaion for this project is from the Artfulparent. The flow from our glue bottle was very little and hence we could create only thin lines using the glue. Dheekshu tasted the salt before covering the glue with it. I think she did like the taste. After covering the glue with salt, we need to touch the art with water colour paint. That was the difficult part as she scrubbed with the brush. We have kept our art for drying.

We did the classic "Paint blot". We folded the paper, unfolded it again and dropped few drops of paint on the fold. Folded the paper again and applied some pressure on the paper. When we opened the paper, we could see beautiful design on both sides of the fold. It was a fun activity and though the design can be predicted, it was fun to watch the design when we open the folding.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Misc Activities

I drew and cut out 6 different yellow circles varying in radius from 1 cm to 6 cm. I pasted the circles to the index card for the additional stiffness. I made different pattens with the same size yellow circles. She has to replicate the patterns using the circles by keeping the same size yellow circles over the pattern. Dheekshu did pretty well. I am planning to make more circles in blue colour with difference in radius only by 0.5cm and include both yellow and blue circles in the pattern and make her replicate the pattern.

We tried doing Mystery art inspired from the book "Preschool" by MaryAnn Kohl. Baking soda dissolved in water is used to paint on the white paper. The painting disappears as it dries out. Water colouring should bring back the painting. However the painting did not appear after water colouring for us. I need to check that once before we try once again.

Dheekshu is very comfortable inserting toothpick into toothpick dispenser for quite sometime now. It does take a lot of concentration. She can insert around 15 to 20 in one shot. After that it is very much difficult for her to concentrate on that activity.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Using dropper

Today we did another Montessori activity - Transferring water using dropper. Dheekshu had some difficulties first but she learnt with in 2 mins and it became 30 mins activity. For every transfer, she pours back the water to the first container. Once she got bored, she started writing alphabets using the dropper in the water. Then she forgot about the dropper, tried to transfer water using hands for some times. Then she poured the water in the first container to the second and did not know what to do with the remaining water and threw remaining on the ground. So much mess but very much fun. I was quite surprised to see Dheekshu playing in water as she does not like wet place. Even a drop of water makes her run from the place saying the place is wet. Today she did not mind about her dress being wet. May be she liked the activity very much.

Easy art

As we were quite busy for the last few days, I was not able to spend time with Dheekshu for doing some activities. As usual, she was painting with her Crayola first paint. To make a difference in the activity, I dropped few drops of water in the paper. She was amazed to see the bleeding colours and colour mixing etc. We will do this activity with little more planning again.

We played traffic lights today as Dheekshu knows about Signals. I collected few green, red and yellow items. If I show her red item, she has to stand on the same place & green means she needs to move & yellow means she has to jump. She enjoyed the activity very much. If I show her red, she goes into the starting place and stand there saying Red means stop, stop.. It was a fun activity.


We went to bowling over the weekend. Dheekshu was encouraging everybody by clapping hands for first few minutes. Then she got bored as she can not use the ball. I made her sit in a video game(without penny) just to rotate the steering to check the car running on the screen. She was doing that for around 30 mins.
We tried bowling in the house using used bottles. She was trying to knock down the bottles like I instructed for first few minutes but no luck. So she went close to the bottles to knock them down. It was a fun activity.

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