Crozet Play School

Kids at Play in Crozet


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There’s No Such Thing as a Gruffalo

 

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Julia Donaldson is my new favorite children’s author!  I was introduced to her by one of my Mom’s during Halloween.  She came to our class dressed as a witch and read “Room on the Broom.”  That book became an instant favorite, and then I found her Grufflo books too!  My own children LOVE these stories, the element of the Grufflo, and the tricky mouse.  The mouse is able to trick all of the forest animals, and convince them that he is the scariest creature in the “deep, dark wood”!  He even scares the Grufflo.  I think children love when the underdog wins!

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After reading the book we re-created the book using our wooden platform, tree blocks, and little figures to represent all of the characters.  I had the puppets for the mouse and Grufflo.  C had the great idea to add rocks from our nature table, and M thought we should add felt to represent the creek and river.  We acted out and re-told the story using the props, and the children played with the items as well!

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We also read the second book, “The Gruffalo’s Child” in which the Gruffalo’s baby learns an important lesson about the little mouse.

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After all of this discussion about the Grufflo, I thought it would be great to set up an invitation for the kids to make him using clay and loose parts.

I gave them a variety of clay tools, wooden sticks and beads.  The results were awesome!  Below D made the Gruffly and used the wooden sticks to make his arms, claws on his feet and horns on his head.  I had the book propped up for the children to refer to the picture if they wanted to.

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T working with the clay above.  She rolled out the clay to form really, really long legs of the Gruffalo.  I love the way she used all of the wooden picks to make his belly.

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A above added a variety of eyes to her Gruffalo, and then decided to change her creation and put in lots and lots of wooden sticks all over his body.

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C was one of the few children that wanted his Gruffly to stand up on the cardboard.  He asked for help getting his clay to stand up tall, and then he got straight to work adding details to his face and body.

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At the end of the week we let everyone come to school in their PJs and we had a Gruffalo viewing party.  There is a short 25 min movie on Netflix that is based on the book.  We gathered on the couches in my family room area and snuggled up for popcorn and a movie.  Many of the children said they watched the movie at home as well!

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It was so fun to dig in deep with this story!  Happy Reading!


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The Little Red Hen

 

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We loved focusing on The Little Red Hen for a week at school!  This is such a simple story, with a lesson to be learned about helping others that is simple for preschoolers to understand.  We read a few different versions of the book:

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Each version still told the same simple story, but sometimes the characters or friends that didn’t help the Red Hen were different.  We always had a discussion at the end of the book about the similarities and differences between all of the stories.

 

Then we got to bake our own batch of Honey Whole Wheat Bread!  I used this recipe from My Small Potatoes blog.  I used King Arthur’s whole wheat flour instead of white. 

 

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We mixed the dough!

 

 

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Then we kneaded and baked the bread!  Everyone enjoyed their own little loaf, and got to take them home fresh from the oven!  I think we will be making this recipe again before the school year is out!

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We also made some little red hens, and they laid rhyming eggs!

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This is our new shadow puppet theatre!  I retold the story of The Little Red Hen using the transparency puppets a few times during the week.  I was hoping this would inspire some of their own puppet making, but for now they were just really interested in hearing the story.

 

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little red hen pizza 

The last book we read this week was The Little Red Hen (makes a pizza).  Of course we had to make our own class pizza! 

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We rolled the dough…

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Added the pizza sauce and cheese!

 

 

 

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0189abb061620bef7c962c04d6cb8463d313d18f41And gobbled it up!  This was enjoyed by everyone in the classroom!

 

 

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On Friday we also made our own shape pizzas, and then counted how many of each shape we put on our pizza pie!

 

As a wrap up of The Little Red Hen each child was sent home with their first homework assignment to help out around the house for the weekend.  They got to earn a sticker for each time they did a chore or helped their parents in any way!