How To Stay Organized As A Toddler Teacher

As some of you know, toddlers can be oh so crazy! But they can also be lots of fun if you are organized. I was a toddler teacher for over 10 years before my boys were born and I loved the toddler age. I actually kind of miss it.

I have a dividers for each month. Behind that has a monthly calendar and weekly lesson plans with the copy of the activity behind that. On Fridays, This is when I would get everything ready for the next week. Make my copies, cut everything out and gather all my supplies. I also would have the weekend to get any last minute items.

Take a look at one of my lesson plans for the week about bears. I have so much fun making lesson plans. But I also love seeing the children have fun and learn as they play and stay busy with all the activities.

I always used nap times to get everything cleaned up. Hang up their activities or pack up their bags. It’s best to get all that done while they are sleeping so you can have your full attention on them. If you sit and play with them at free time you will have a smooth afternoon. Toddlers need to be taught how to play and they will take what they learned and use it for their real-life skills.

Keep to a daily schedule and do everything in order every day. Your classroom with a routine will run so smoothly because the children will know what to expect.

If you are potty training, they all sit down next to the bathroom and take turn using the bathroom. We would all sit down after every activity and I would make every child try. This is a perfect time for the children to have a book or busy bags. (Small things that will entertain them.) magnets, sorting sticks, shape and color flashcards or search and find bottles. Keep changing it up so the kids don’t get bored.

Have fun, I know it’s a lot of work and very exhausting but it is totally worth it. Remember to have fun with them and they will enjoy coming to class. By the end of the year, it will run amazing and you will have time to add more learning work into their day. (Once they are all potty trained.) Love ya, Mary xoxoxo

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What I Love About Melissa And Doug Toys

A little backstory for you, If you don’t know already. I worked at my mother’s childcare center growing up then helped at my older sister’s childcare center when I got older. Fifteen years I saw children play with the same Melissa and Doug toys and never have I seen any pieces break. The toys they have designed are so durable. A class of fifteen children was not able to break anything and I was impressed. When I had my first son I was set on only getting Melissa and Doug toys ONLY!

We have so many Melissa and Doug products. I love how they added little learning ideas to do with each product. Almost six years later and my son is still playing with these products along with his younger brother. My son has learned to tie his shoe with their adorable shoe tying toy.

I was so happy when they started making more Disney themed items, being a Floridian, of course, we love Disney. The boys love the little Disney theme cars and buildings. They line them up and bring the Melissa and Doug train right through with all the Disney characters on it. So cute!

Another favorite is the tools. What boy doesn’t love tools? They feel so big hammering away at my chairs, thinking they are really helping. HEHE. Definitely a must to any boys collection.

Puzzles, puzzles and more puzzles! Who doesn’t love puzzles? We have several of Melissa and Doug puzzles and love them. also good to trace with. I like the big knobs on the puzzles for when my boys were younger but they do have more challenging ones for the older children as well.

I love Melissa and Doug. My boys love Melissa and Doug and I’m so happy to see my children playing with these toys I can trust. From instruments to playing with the food they have it all and so do we:) We are Melissa and Doug’s biggest fans. They have over 2,000 products and I have seen a lot of their toys being played with from my boys and other children. Their toys are worth every cent. Let me know what you think of Melissa and Doug. Great for Christmas and birthday gifts. You can also use them in your classroom for educational uses too. Which product do you like best? Love ya Mary xoxo

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Halloween/Pumpkin Story And Activites

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. I love fall and pumpkin everything so I would like to share some of my ideas to do with your children at home or in a classroom.

These pumpkin accents, are amazing. Check out my post on 32 ways to use these pumpkins or any other cutouts. I will not repeat any of the 32 activities so check out this link after you read this one.

The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin

  • Squared pumpkins snack. Graham cracker with orange icing
  • Squared pumpkin project. Glue orange squares on the big squared pumpkin
  • Square and cube observation
  • Pumpkin sink or float
  • Magic pumpkin seed sorting. Paint seeds different colors
  • The child will paint what shape and color pumpkin they want to make

I Like Pumpkins

  • Pumpkins on a vine. Use the front of child’s knuckles and add the green vine
  • Make pumpkin seed to eat
  • Plant pumpkin seeds
  • Paint real pumpkins
  • Tasting pumpkin pie
  • Make a Scarecrow (Dance to “There was an old lady that wasn’t afraid of anything”)

Splat the Cat and the Pumpkin-Picking Plan

  • Sizing pumpkins
  • Weighing and measuring pumpkins
  • Pin the smile on the pumpkin
  • Pumpkin magnet face
  • Pumpkin teeth (roll the dice and add the teeth in the pumpkin smile)
  • Pumpkin bowling

Sixteen Runaway Pumpkins

  • Rolling pumpkins to a partner
  • Count by twos
  • Explore inside of pumpkins
  • Pumpkin smash
  • Pumpkin pie play dough
  • Paper bag pumpkin (crumble newspaper inside small brown bags and paint the outside, adding green pipe cleaner for vines)

Corduroy’s Best Halloween Ever! (perfect for party day)

  • Decorate mini pumpkins for the classroom pumpkin patch
  • Dress up
  • Mask making using a paper plate
  • Bobbin for apples (in the home only, don’t want to spread germs)
  • Dance the monster mash
  • Toss the candy in the pumpkin bucket
  • Catch the ghost (use a white balloon add a spooky face and let the air out the kids will try to catch it)

My kids love doing these fall/Halloween activities. They have a blast, and you will too. If you have any questions let me know. Love ya, Mary xoxo

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32 Activities With Accent Die-cut Labels

Labels, accents, die-cuts, or cutouts whatever you call them, they will work for 32 amazing learning activities. Not only can you find them on Amazon but you can also find them at your dollar store. Or you can be creative and make them yourself. You can use these activities for almost every holiday or theme you are talking about.

  • Number or letter sand tracing
  • Sensory number or letter search
  • Lacing
  • Clothespin numbers
  • Puzzles
  • Rhyming match
  • Shape or emotion memory game
  • Puppets (5 Little pumpkins sitting on a gate)
  • Counting out numbers
  • Decorate them or use to for decoration around your room
  • File folder games
  • Less than or greater than
  • Adding or subtracting
  • Patterns
  • Magnet word families
  • Who came to class
  • Magnet stories or songs

(Two little leaves hanging on a tree. One name HIGH and one name LOW. Fly up HIGH, fly down LOW. Come back HIGH, come back LOW.)

  • Opposite matching
  • Uppercase and lowercase matching
  • Ordering numbers or find the missing number
  • Chart sight word stories
  • Tic-tac-toe

  • Alphabetical order (Matching)

  • Building or finding names
  • Hide and seek around the room
  • Stencils
  • Measuring with them
  • Money counting
  • Worm in the apple letter matching
  • Graphing
  • Calendar numbering
  • Sight word match

Let me know which one of the 32 activities you liked best. Is there something you haven’t thought of? Please help me by sharing in on Pinterest. Love ya, Mary xoxox

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Our Homeschool Routine

I love staying on schedules. I have stayed on schedules with my oldest since he was 9 months old. Our day goes by so much smoother when everyone knows what’s going to happen next.

 

As I explained in my last blog, The first week of kindergarten was a little rough for us. 

A couple of weeks later and we are getting into a nice routine. Anytime there is a learning experience happening and they are wanting to learn, I never rush it.

After Breakfast and we clean up I let them pick a center in the school room. That is usually around 8:30. Right after that, we have circle time to read stories and do our calendar. Tuesdays and Thursdays my oldest has online classes 9-11 (break 10-10:15). He goes into another room to focus. 

I watch my friends kids that are the age of my youngest (3).

9-9:15 writing activity Bradly does Language Arts 9-9:30

9:15-9:30 fine motor activity Social studies 9:30-10

9:30-9:45 dance and get some wiggles out

9:45-10 math activity

10-10:15 they all have a snack

10:15-10:30 readiness activity 10:15-10:45 Math

10:30-10:45 art craft 10:45-11:00/11:15 Science (T&TH)

10:45-11 centers

11-11:15 science

11:15-11:45 outside and clean up

11:45-12:15 lunchtime

12:15-12:30 clean up, potty, and read a book

12:30-2:30 nap time for the younger ones                  Reading and science with Brad 

2:30-3 younger ones wake up and clean up Brad will play learning computer games

3-3:45 pool time

3:45-4 snack

4-5 all play centers and I will make shopping list, do our bills and check emails

5-6 getting dinner ready and eat

6-7:30 Movie (quiet time) Boys sports will be around this time if any

7:30-8 bedtime story and brush teeth or bath if they haven’t had one yet. (I usually throw them in the bath after we went swimming)

 

My homeschooling routine just turned into a whole day of activities. This is how our day goes every day Mon-Fri. The weekends I change it up a little if we have something to do. I get as much cleaning done throughout the day when I have a chance. On Sundays are when I do deep cleaning and I give some chores to the boys. Also I work on my weekly lesson plans for the up coming week. 

 I hope you enjoyed our day. Let me know your schedule. Love ya, Mary xoxo

 

                                                           Disclaimer:

        I get a small commission from purchases made through links within this page.

                          There is no charge to you by clicking on the links.

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