Toddler Time - Balloons!

Today's Toddler Time was on my birthday! Yay! I was super excited to plan a Toddler Time for my birthday. Because it was my birthday, I decided that today's program would focus on the learning concept of play. Play is so important for children learning to read and relate to the world around them.

Stories We Shared
Today we read an adorable book I had InterLibrary Loaned: The Blue Balloon by Mick Inkpen. It's about a balloon a little boy finds that does all kinds of crazy things, from never popping, to disappearing and reappearing square, to taking a space adventure. The book is simple and engaging.

Flannels We Shared
Today's flannel was a counting rhyme that I found on Sunflower Storytime.
     Four Balloons
     Four balloons up in the sky
     See them flying way up high?
     If one of those balloons should happen to POP!
     Only 3 balloons will be left floating up top! (2..1..)

Rhymes We Shared
As usual we sang our Shaker Song today. Since we were playing I did not add any additional songs or rhymes, but we did some activities, outlined below.

Activities We Shared
Since today was a special Balloon program I brought in 67 assorted balloons for us to play with! I had blown them up the previous night, taking care not to blow them up fully so they were extremely hard to pop.
With the balloons we practiced throwing them, naming the colors, catching them, and kicking them. We also found colors that matched and colors that were almost the same (light and dark blue) but didn't quite match.
Then, I brought out the parachutes. Both of them. The little one and the enormous one. They had SO much fun. We popped the balloons like popcorn, moved the parachutes fast & slow, hard & gentle. They absolutely loved it. So much that we forfeit our usual play time for more parachute and balloon play. This was a huge hit with everyone.
We also only had one balloon casualty, and it didn't pop, but instead just slowly fizzled out.

Early Literacy Tips We Shared

  • Play with your children is super important as they grow! It is one of the primary ways young children learn about how the world works.
  • Play helps children practice putting their thoughts into words
  • Play helps children think symbolically. That this item stands for this thing, which helps them understand that words can stand for real objects or experiences. (We experienced this when we talked about how the balloons were like popcorn cooking and a little one excitedly yelled that the balloons were like coffee in the machine.)
  • Play is how children practice becoming adults and process what they see and hear everyday.


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