Monday, 31 March 2014

Summer Theme - Day 2 - Thematic Learning

~Medha is 3 years 1 month old~

Yayy!! We completed Day 1 of our first theme successfully.. Now we are on 2nd day to learn about summer in fun way. But as we went out for Bubble Ink 30 books 30 day challenge end up meeting in the morning and went out to Airport on some work in the afternoon we didn't do much when compared to yesterday. But I don't want to miss the post hence whatever we did blogging here. 

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Summer Theme - Day 1 - Thematic Learning

~Medha is 3 years 1 month old~

Yes, most of you guessed it right by reading the example part in my previous post !!!!! SUMMER is our first theme. 

As it's Summer here, I thought this would be best theme to start with Medha. Of course this theme is not chosen as per her interest, but I felt this would be perfect one to start with as she can practically relate the things more.  

Mini-Unit Thematics for Medha

Here are the themes I have decided so far for Medha.  And expect for Summer theme, I really didn't gather any activities or ideas. 

Summer - Day #1, Day #2, Day #3, Day #4


In the Kitchen

My Body

My Home




And this list will be updated regularly with the links once we finish theme i.e. every 3 days once. And also we haven't finalized on the order of the theme. 

Hope some of you will recommend some nice themes and good ideas to go strong with the thematic learning. :) 

Friday, 28 March 2014

Thematic Approach for Medha

Thematic approach is a way of teaching and learning, whereby many areas of the curriculum like language, math, sensory and practical life etc., are connected together and integrated within a theme.

A thematic approach to teaching involves integrating all subject areas together under one theme. It crosses over subject lines and helps children relate basic academic skills to real-world ideas. Thematic units are common in preschool classes especially, since preschool children learn through interactive, integrated activities. These themed units incorporate reading, math, science and social studies as well as the arts for a well-balanced curriculum.

Creating a Unit

In creating thematic units, teachers or parents should plan for one topic per week or month depending on the broadness of the theme. Units can be planned around a book, season of the year, or basic skill such as colors or letters. Another resource for theme ideas comes from the students themselves. Ask them to find out where their interests lie and plan a few units around those particular ideas. Once themes have been chosen, find learning center and hands-on activities to support the topic. Gather books about the theme to read. Study teacher resource books and websites for games and lessons that teach math, science and social studies skill as they relate to the theme. Plan art and music activities to include fine arts.

Sample Themes

Choose a season of the year, such as fall, to use as your theme for the month. Spend time with activities that relate to changing leaves, pumpkins and apples. The alphabet provides 26 weeks of thematic units, one week for each letter, or use a color as the theme for the week. If your class is interested in the ocean, plan a unit that focuses on an ocean habitat. Children can read books about the ocean, play number and math games that involve fish and other sea creatures, and learn about how ocean animals live. The letter "O" can be introduced when discussing an octopus, and students can explore the properties of water at a water table learning center. Community helpers, shapes, Ocean, Kitchen, Seasons, Farm and transportation are other common preschool themes.

Why I chose this?

Teaching thematically helps Medha make sense of what she is doing, since content areas are integrated and not made to stand alone. And will be able to retain more information when it is not presented as isolated facts, but rather as part of a whole. Also she will be able to relate to real-world experiences and build on prior knowledge of a topic.

Also, alphabets, numbers, counting, math all these are anyway will be taught in their school curriculum. I want her to know her practical life scenarios and facts about the world around her appropriate to her age.

So I can use her vacation to allow her exploring new things and new crafts and much more fun. Also, as a mother, I will have good idea what she know already and what else she can focus on and what areas she is yet to improve in terms of crafting, creative thinking, problem solving skills. 

Am I Home Schooling?

No, not at all. I don't have any knowledge of home schooling but I wish I would've known how to do and can do with Medha. I am just trying to make her learning new things, new words, vocabulary, and practical experience around theme all in fun way. 

And I am planning to stick around the theme I chose as per Medha's interest for a minimum of hour per day. And each theme we are going to explore for 3 days minimum and if she's more interested will extend up to a week. 

How am I planning to do?

I had listed down few themes as of now around 6 themes which can be used for 3 weeks by considering 2 themes per week. And gather craft ideas around the net for the theme and read the books around the theme and explore the items/things around the theme practically. 

I already gathered few ideas for first 2 themes I noted down and thanks to Google and Pinterest for wide range of ideas. 

For example, if I chose SUMMER theme, my approach would be as follows::

  • First, I will ask Medha if she knows anything about the theme i.e. SUMMER SEASON. If she knows, praise her. If she doesn't know, give little info about the theme and ask her what she thinks of it?
  • Ask more questions like what do you see more in SUMMER? How do you feel in Summer? What people wear to protect eyes from SUN?
  • Do some crafts around the theme like, make a watermelon, make an umbrella etc. You have to gather some materials for this. And at this age, they can't do all the crafts themselves so your time is needed. 
  • Think of at least one simple do-at-home science experiment around the theme. For example: Summer Theme - Making Ice or Melting Ice.
  • Plan some pretend play around the theme. For Summer, I thought of Pretend Play - Ice cream Shop
  • This age kids will learn more with play and books - so gather some books around theme. 
  • Print out some worksheets or activity sheets available in the net around theme and let her explore. 
  • Focus on one new word around theme on each day. By end of theme, she should learn 3 new words and use those words in her communication when and required. I will be having more scope over here as we use our mother tongue mostly at home. So I can introduce general words in English around the theme. For example: SUMMER theme can introduce Sandals (she knows only shoes and chappals) or TANK TOPS (Clothing in Summer) or water pool etc. 

Can I do?

I don't know. But I have strongly decided to do, "where there is a will there will be a way", right? I hope I can stick to the plan and do. In each theme, if she learns one new word, one fact and can relate these with real time - enough for me. I would be more than happy. 

I need all your blessings and God's blessings to do this without fail. Pray for us. If you also similar age group kids and wish to follow with this, do leave a comment. We will do and raise happy kids. 

My next post will be list of themes I planned so far, as of now only 6, but will keep updating this post with more once we start with it. 

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Flinto : March Theme - I Love My Vegetables

~Medha is 3 years old~

Vegetables and Nutrition is one of the tough topic when it comes to convincing the kids eating balanced food. I must say Flinto put all the activities very very well that are required to explain the importance of vegetables and their nutritional values and also importance of having them.

Sneak-peak of the "I Love My Vegetables" Theme Box contents from Flinto is here.

Box at a glance

Friday, 14 March 2014

Book Review : Giraffes can't dance

~Medha is 3 years old~

When I was thinking of books that are about "being YOURSELF" theme as part of The Bubble Ink - 30 Books in 30 Days challenge, I came across this book. When I read first time, I found this as a sweet story with funny and beautiful illustrations.

Author : Giles Andreae
Age : 3-6 years
Pages : 32
Publisher : Cartwheel Books

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Book Review : Big Dog Little Dog

~Medha is 3 years old~

I must thank Falak for sending me this book as part of Tale In Mail kit for Friends Theme. We are reading this book on Day #2 of 30 days 30 Books challenge.

Author : P.D.Eastman
Age : 3-7 years
Pages : 32
Publisher : RHUS