“D” is for Digging…in Rice!

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While I spend a lot of time in the kitchen, garden or chicken coop, the majority of my day revolves around my children.  Outside of keeping them clean, healthy and well fed, I try to nourish their physical and mental needs as well.  We love to be outside exploring in the yard or on a nearby trail.  I find so many learning opportunities in nature and try to just use everyday moments to teach them something new. At least once or twice a week, however, I also intentionally create a learning activity.

My oldest son is in grade school now so there isn’t much time outside of homework and sports to create these opportunities.  Most of his at-home learning is reinforced during our adventures or in our evening quiet time.  My youngest, however, is three and the perfect age for fun little activities that introduce letters, numbers, colors and other concepts.

This week we are working on the letter D and the number three.  During our weekly library trip last week I chose a few books that involve the letter D so I could use them during our activity and reading time.  My choice for today was Digger the Dinosaur. It also conveniently involved the concept of cleaning up your toys – which my toddler really needs to work on!

In addition to reading the story, I created a learning activity using a bag of rice and casserole dish.  One of the staples around our home is RICE!  It’s inexpensive and a versatile addition to many dishes, but also great for craft projects and explorative play! For todays activity, I just dumped half a bag into one of my baking pans, along with the letter D and number 3 from our bathtub toys, three dinosaurs and three little dogs.  We painted the dogs and dinosaurs which made for a fun craft and now that they are dry they are reinforcing the letter D! There are also three of each in the pan so we can practice counting and identifying the number.  He loved it!

Here is A enjoying his activity:

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We have to go grocery shopping soon so I plan to have him go on a search for the letter D on boxes and signs around the store.  This will be something to occupy him and reinforce what we’ve learned.

Summer is just around the corner and I will soon have my oldest around the house every day.  We are making our summer bucket list project this week that I will be sure to share.  I will also try to blog any learning opportunities I come up with for the summer.  D is in kindergarten and has done so well learning to read.  My goal for the summer is to keep him reading!!

I know it is going to be a little more hectic working with both kids who are at different levels but I am up for the challenge! I hope to make it adventurous, messy and lots of fun!

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