Calendar Practice

Happy New Year! January is the perfect time to practice calendar work with your child or students. The book When Lucy Goes Out Walking: A Puppy’s First Year by Ashley Wolff provides a great platform to kick off learning or practicing months of the year.

calendarpractice
Having fun learning with the calendar…Although my 4 year old would only smile AFTER taking the picture 😉

My daughters both enjoyed this book. They are dog lovers (although we don’t have one ourselves… yet!) and liked seeing the different activities that puppy Lucy does in each month. They also liked the rhyming text that could be easily incorporated into a poetry unit.

Best Ages: pre-k – 1st grade

For Parents:

  • Read through the book once with your child. Afterward, give your child a calendar and ask them to flip to each new month as you read Lucy Goes out Walking. (If you only have a digital calendar, you could pull that up on a screen or you could purchase a hard copy calendar at the dollar store.)
  • Go through the calendar together, practicing the names of each month in order. Discuss the special events, birthdays or holidays you celebrate during various months each year.
  • Count how many months there are in one year (12).
  • If you speak more than one language, or want your child to learn a second language, this is a great opportunity to practice the months of the year in that language. Check out these fun songs for months of the year in  Spanish and French.

For Teachers:

  • Go through the months of the year as a class. Give students a print-out of the 2017 calendar and ask them to find dates that you say – write out a list in advance. For example, you could say, “Draw a star on April 5th” or “Circle October 1st.” Review as a class.
  • Play this song for your students. Have them point to the month as the song sings each one. (Start at 0:15 to skip ad for the Learning Station).
  • Use this free resource for calendar practice as morning work, a learning station activity, or small-group or whole-group practice.

5 Terrific Animal Board Books

Our family reads quite a few board books, although I search out those with more in-depth topics and longer text to keep my two year old and preschooler engaged. These are five of our favorite animal board books from the last few weeks.

For other board book ideas, check out this post. Happy reading! 🙂

Best Ages: 0-3 years

  1. A Parade of Puppies by Charles Ghigna

A book that shows different breeds of dogs with adorable illustrations. It also features an animal rescue center, sure to please anyone who has adopted a pet!

2. ABC Insects compiled by The American Museum of Natural History

Bright and colorful with stunning photographs of the featured insects from A-Z. There is a brief description of each insect for lots of insect learning.

3. Busy Birdies by John Schindel

Fun rhyming phrases describe what birds do from nibbling to jumping to nesting. Close-up photographs show a variety of species.

4. Who’s Hiding in the Pond? by Christine Gunzi

Young children love lift-the-flap books, and I like this one in particular because of its unique setting in the pond. It includes a few unexpected items, such as a jar of tadpoles, and ends with a mirror that both my daughters enjoyed!

5. Fox on the Loose! by Matthew Porter

My two-year old likes this book. The animals on the farm work together to stop a sneaky and ravenous fox from getting the chickens… All while boasting robust vocabulary words for little readers!