Week 2 Theme: Space, Stars and the Planets…and a few aliens, too

Our young Jedi (YJ) has been really interested in space travel lately, so we have been studying space!  We read lots of great books and did many space-themed activities during the past two weeks.  Two activities stood out as favorites.  The first was Moon Dough, homemade play dough with black food coloring and glitter!  It was our young Jedi’s favorite activity all week.  By Friday, he was waking me up at 7am to start school immediately so that he could play with it.  Of course, it did not take long for him to decide it was carbonite and all LEGO Star Wars mini-figures should be frozen in it.  Here is a photo of our moondough: 

moondough

We used cookie cutters to cut out stars, plastic eggs for craters and legos for our carbonite mini-figures.  It makes a pretty good Death Star, too.

      The other popular activity was the result of an alien invasion.  It all started with Oliver Jeffers’ book, The Way back Home, which is a wonderful children’s book about a little boy gets stuck on the moon and meets a Martian.  We made different colored playdough aliens and added eyes and pipe cleaners.  I explained to YJ that the aliens had invaded our classroom and they were really hungry.  We had to feed them alien food (Froot Loops) but they only like to eat food the same color as themselves.  If you feed them anything else, they will throw it up!  Young Jedis think that vomiting aliens are really funny!  The aliens mouths are the pipe cleaners.  When we were done feeding the aliens, we counted the number of eyes that each alien had and found the corresponding number.  Of course, Young Jedis are fond of Froot Loops, too….especially the yellow ones. 

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 Alien Invasion Activity

   Materials:

   Colored Playdough

   Googly eyes

   Pipe cleaners

   Froot Loops or Cheerios (you can change the rules for your aliens)

   plastic or wooden numbers (optional)

Reflections on our first week

On Monday afternoon, I thought, “Was that it?”, “Did he learn anything?”, “Does learning through play really work?”  We read books, played with play dough, took a walk, sang songs, painted and played in the sensory bin (sand and turtles).  He planned, he played and he reviewed.  It was a good day but, by 1:30 p.m., he just wanted to go into his room and play with his toys.  So we ended the day earlier than I’d planned.  And we changed the schedule so that we end our “school day” before “nap time” (like that is going to happen) so that he can have quiet time playing in his room.  

So, we continued our week with lots of play, stories and songs.  We had our first field trip to the aquarium.  We baked a cake for his daddy’s birthday.  Hopefully, we a learned a little along the way.  photo(3)