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Toddler - Week #92

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Week 92: The Skies Are Finally Blue!

By Jodi L. Kelley, edHelperBaby

           I cannot get over how quickly the words continue to pile up! Evan has so many more words and phrases as every day goes by. I was floored once this past week when he said an entire phrase. As he looked out the window, he said, "I go outside play?" and I was shocked. He's also been walking around saying "I see you" to everything and everyone in his path. It's all so cute!       

       It is finally nicer outside here in our area, so we have been able to go outside to play. We have been trapped indoors thanks to all of the snow and finally got outside this week as everything began to clear up. I took Evan and Alice to the playground and was amazed at how he was able to use the same equipment that was tough for him just a handful of months ago. And things like bubbles and kites were so much more exciting to him than before. I think spring has a lot in store for us!


Creating Good Readers:
           Evan is also singing his ABC's more now. I have been singing them to him for a long time, knowing that his young mind is a sponge. He actually very clearly sings A through G, then it gets a little muddled! So this week, with his "I see you" business, I have tried to connect the name of the letter to the picture of the letter. It is not too early to make this association. Even the youngest children start quickly to associate pictures and symbols with what they represent. Think about it-have you ever pulled into the local donut shop for your coffee and your little guy starts begging for a donut hole? My guy does. He knows that sign and what it means for him. So, I thought, why not have him know what the picture "A" means? It is the start of letting my little reader realize that printed symbols and words represent sounds that let us learn to read.


Book Of The Week:
            Kite Flying by Grace Lin       

       This is a beautiful, cultural tale about the Chinese tradition of kite making, which is accessible for even the youngest readers. The text is simple while the pictures are beautiful. It is a story about a family who all go to the craft store to buy the things they need to make their own kites. It tells how, in China, each person's kite tells who they are and represents their spirit.


           I packed more activities into this past week than we have been able to do in over a month! We went to the playground and ended up splashing around in mud after spending an hour on the equipment. Evan's ball had rolled into a puddle and he went right into it to retrieve the ball. As he waded through, he was first upset and cried out, "Wet!" but then realized it was fun and began splashing. Before I knew it, Alice was in there splashing around, too. I was about to get upset when I figured they might as well have fun. It was warm enough and they were already soaked. So they splashed away.       

       We also spent an afternoon blowing bubbles. Evan's got this new giggle that is infectious! Bubbles brought it out every single time one was blown! He was even able to blow a few bubbles himself!       

       Another afternoon we flew kites. I did not make our own kites, but I am sure it would be a great arts and crafts activity to do with the kids. I purchased cheap ones from the store. It was great to see how excited the kids were when the kites caught the wind. I was impressed at how Evan was able to hold onto the string and watch the kite fly.       

       And then of course, we had our ABC hunt. I just hid letter cards that we've been playing with all around the yard. We made toilet paper binoculars as an art project. Evan colored two toilet paper rolls with markers. They were glued together and string was attached. He had them hung around his neck and put them to his eyes to search for letters. We only did letters A through G since that is as far as he can sing for now.


Rhyme Time:
           Remember this song from Mary Poppins?


       With tuppence for paper and strings

       You can have your own set of wings

       With your feet on the ground

       You're a bird in a flight

       With your fist holding tight

       To the string of your kite

       Oh, oh, oh!

       Let's go fly a kite

       Up to the highest height!

       Let's go fly a kite and send it soaring

       Up through the atmosphere

       Up where the air is clear

       Oh, let's go fly a kite!

       When you send it flyin' up there

       All at once you're lighter than air

       You can dance on the breeze

       Over 'ouses and trees

       With your first 'olding tight

       To the string of your kite

       Oh, oh, oh!

       Let's go fly a kite

       Up to the highest height!

       Let's go fly a kite and send it soaring

       Up through the atmosphere

       Up where the air is clear

       Let's go fly a kite!


Evan's Opinion:
           Evan has been so happy this week! Outside is his favorite place to be. He has enjoyed every activity we did all week. He wakes up in the morning asking to play outside. He loved, loved, loved the bubbles. He preferred chasing them and breaking them to actually using the wand to blow. But as I said, his laughter was infectious. As well, he was so excited by the kite flying. I couldn't believe he stood and held his string for so long. He also loved his letter search. He thinks he is very cool when he uses his binoculars. In fact one morning, I was in the bathroom and he laid himself on the floor looking through the crack with his binoculars saying, "I see you, Mommy!"


You're Probably Wondering.....
           "What are some food precautions and tips for eating at a restaurant?"       

       I thought it would be fun to go to a Chinese restaurant this week after we read the kite book. But I wondered if it would be all right for a toddler to eat Chinese food. Evan loves food, so I wasn't so much worried about him finding something he liked, but unsure of what is okay and what is not okay. Only a few months ago, my pediatrician had told me I shouldn't be giving the kids tuna, so was there anything off limits at the Chinese buffet? Typically, Alice gets American foods there like chicken nuggets and French fries, but Evan is not picky and if he could have some culturally diverse foods, I thought it would be great. So I investigated.       

       I found out there are few guidelines around this question. It is suggested that a child not have foods with a large amount of coloring or MSG. But I wasn't interested in picking out Americanized Chinese foods anyway. The other suggestion I found was not to force a young child to eat anything with a different texture or that is too spicy. Ironically, Evan likes things a little spicy, and as I said, he isn't too picky. So I stuck with lo mien noodles and veggies, and Evan loved them!       

       However, if your little guy isn't as open to new foods as Evan, I recommend packing some favorites so your dinner will still be enjoyable. Even though I know Evan likes a lot of different foods, I still pack a little snack bowl of the mandarin oranges he loves, animal crackers, or something he can pick at while we wait for the food. I also think it is a good idea to pack some little table toys and a book or two. You should also pay special attention to what restaurant you chose. I like to go to the buffet because there is a lot of commotion and nobody really notices the noisy toddler in the corner! Don't make yourself suffer through a dinner in a fancy restaurant with a screeching toddler while everyone stares you down!       

       And speaking of the corner, don't be afraid to request a certain seat. We always ask for the back section in the corner. I like to be away from everyone! There's also a door right there in case I need to make a quick escape. I am not afraid to jump ship if we are sinking! My husband has been stuck inside paying a bill while I ran off! A mom's got to do what a mom's got to do!


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