Friday, May 17, 2019

11.5 Month Learning Shelves

Here are the learning shelves we had up for the last couple of weeks.  Archer was 11.5 months.

First, we had a little basket with shape beanbags.  The beanbags say the name of the shape in English on one side and in Spanish on the other. Both boys had fun throwing these around. Archer thought it was funny if I tossed them to him one at a time while I said the color and shape.
One shelf had this wooden mailbox.  This was one of those amazing garage sale finds, because it held Archer's attention for so long.  He liked putting all the stamps in and watching them fall down into the door.  He also likes opening and closing the door, and taking everything out of the mailbox.  As he gets older, it'll be easier for him to sort the letters.
Another shelf had our Treasure Basket.  It has lots of random objects with different shapes and textures.  Mostly he chews on them and throws them around the room.  Some things he tried to put in the mail box.
Another basket had these little shape sorting turtles.  Archer can't put them together yet, but he likes taking them apart.

I hadn't gotten out our little hedgehog in a while, so that was on another shelf.  I am never quite sure about this one, but Archer always really enjoys it.  He likes to take all the little spikes out.  He also likes to chew on them or just carry one around with him.

I also had out our disk sorter (this one is similar but much nicer). He liked taking all the disks off, but not actually putting them on.  I also found disks in random bins or shelves throughout the room.
When you're too tired to sit up but still want to play.  He just stayed on the floor pushing the disks behind himself.
The bottom shelf (I've learned not to put puzzles up high), had his house knobby puzzle.  It hadn't been all that long since we had it out, but this was the first time he was actually able to put some of the pieces in.
He also just held on to pieces while cruising around the room.
Finally, we had this Animal Talk book  and some Toob Animals to match.  This book has been a favorite for both boys.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Books on the Shelf: Birthday Week

With Archer's birthday being today and his party last weekend, last week's books on the shelf were birthday related.  I also threw in a few books on shapes, just to fill out the shelf.  I was glad to have a shelf a little more geared towards Archer, since most of our books are better for Xander.
Two of the books were from the Meet the Sight Words Readers.  The rest were just picture books we had. The Rookie Toddler book was from the library.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Hide the Cheerio

Archer is still a little young and fiercely independent so it is sometimes hard to get him to play games. However, he is incredibly food motivated, so this simple "hide the Cheerio" game worked perfectly for him.  I gave him a couple of different containers and hid a Cheerio inside (you could also hid a puff, or any other small food).  
Some containers were definitely easier than others.  This yogurt drink one was hard for him, because it was slender with a skinny mouth. 
I love watching him try to figure things out!

Monday, May 6, 2019

Books on the Shelf: Rain Books

Last week, I shared that I have been trying to find ways to pull out more books from our wonderful homeschool library, so that Xander will read them.  Here is what has been on the shelf for the last week.

Since it seemed very appropriate for our area, I pulled out books on rain and flooding. Most of the books were way above Archer's level, but we read or looked at pictures in those we could.  Most were non-fiction, but three were just rain related.

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Thursday, May 2, 2019

11 Month Learning Activities and Baby Shelves

We are finally all healthy and back into a somewhat normal routine, so these shelves went a little better.
Physical Development
Archer is cruising along furniture and pushing toys around, but not quite ready to walk.  Honestly, he is stubborn enough that I think he could be there if it were something that interested him.  For now, he's content crawling and pulling up on things. Last week I shared some pictures and videos of him climbing, which he does quite well.
We are back to using Little Reader and doing Doman style flashcards regularly.  We usually do one to two lessons in English a day.  He watches either a Your Baby Can Read or a Meet The Sight Words video most days a week (while I make dinner).  As you can see from the picture, they definitely hold his attention! He does like YBCR better, though.
Archer has learned where I keep his YBCR flashcards and has become an expert at getting them out, looking through them and leaving them spread out all over the playroom.
We tried to read lots of books together, but he also reads plenty of book son his own!

I have to admit, Spanish isn't going quite as well.  I just don't find myself wanting to talk to him in Spanish, since while fluent, it takes more conscious effort for me. Right now we are just doing one Little Reader lesson a day (multisensory only) and one set of Doman style flashcards three times a day.

Baby Shelves
Here is what we had on our shelves for a few weeks.
These were our sensory jars, that I shared last week. He tends to vary as to which one he likes best any given day.
One shelf had this little cars that we got forever ago from IKEA.  They are a bit old and squeak a bit when they roll, which Archer really enjoys.  He also likes taking them apart.

A little basket had some Magnaflex toys.  It was a huge hit.  The little pieces can fold in on themselves, stick together and be pulled apart.
For some extra fun we stuck them to our empty chai container (I swear, that container has gotten used more than almost any other toy). Since the bottom is magnetic, he liked pulling the magnaflex off or dropping them and having them stick.

While Archer is not quite ready for puzzles, I have still been trying to put them out for him.  This time I had the vehicle puzzle. We tried working on the concept of matching, which he ignored.  Basically, he likes pulling all the pieces out and carrying them around the room.  He also likes putting them in empty containers.
Another shelf had our take-along farm.  This was an impulse purchase last month when we had a gift card to use at a particular store and they had no baby clothes the right size/season for Archer.  I'm really glad I ended up getting it, because both boys have played with it quite a bit already.  Hopefully, it'll get more use as Archer grows.  

He can't actually keep the cars on the tracks yet, but he likes using the cards on the carpet.  He also really likes putting things in the wagons that the tractor can pull.  It came with hay bales, but I also got out some toob animals for him to use.

The last thing out was a Noisy Farm book with some farm toob animals.  He was enjoying the farm so much that we got these out to go with it.  This is also one of his favorite books, so we got out each animal as we would read the book and hear its sound. 

I was initially a little worried that the animals would be too small, but he really liked playing with them (although, he did stick them in his mouth a lot, they did not seem to be choking hazards for him). He put them in various containers and in the wagons of his tractor.  

I also started trying to have him grab a particular one for me.  This is definitely an emerging skill for him and some days he could do it, while others he couldn't.  I made sure it was a fun, low pressure game.  We will have to keep working on it, so we can slowly start playing more games together.

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