Friday, June 5, 2009

Picnic Table Talk: Alphabet

Okay, so I had this theory I would do a letter of the week and be all organized, but in reality I don't like doing a letter of the week. It's rather sad, but I'm just not good at it.

So, I was thinking about what to write about the alphabet...... And I thought about how I told Christy at Superheroes and Princesses I would write about getting Handwriting W/o Tears, so that will be my alphabet post.

Last Saturday I went by Mardel because they were having their sale on homeschooling curriculum, they were out of the one I wanted, but they had this so I got it thinking it looked cool and I've heard wonderful things about it. I got the teacher manual, workbook, and the wooden pieces. I'm probably going to go back and get the CD of songs because I'm figuring out that Princess is a very auditory person (or at the very least loves music, she serenades us in the car all the time).

I looked through the manual and kept thinking, "brilliant, I must do this." It's got all sorts of great ideas. I've used the first few pages of the workbooks with Princess because it's the first thing that's at her level, and she's always wanting stuff to do with me. Basically to work on positioning you have them aim for a star and then scribble. She LOVED this.

At this point you're thinking how's this related to letters? I'm getting there. The big thing about this program is getting kids to love writing and learn how to write without freaking them out. So we spent a couple of nights just having fun playing with the wooden pieces to make letters and roads and all sorts of stuff. It has 4 basic pieces: big line, little line, big curve, little curve. With these you can easily make most every capital letter. They had a good point that it is much easier to write capital letters so teach that first. I had never thought of that, and so I'm changing how I'm teaching writing letters.

So, here's a bunch of pictures playing with the wood pieces.

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Superman so very proud to of figured out how to make a D

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Princess very proud of making an O.

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Batman proudly figuring out an E.

What I loved about this was they completely guided the activity. They had so much fun figuring out how to do it on their own. I'm really looking forward to seeing what all else we can do with this.

There are a lot more awesome alphabet ideas at the Picnic Table.
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