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We always start our lessons by watching the clip from Leapfrog Letter Factory DVD for the featured letter and then making a letter craft. Being crafty isn’t my specialty so most of my ideas for letter crafts have come for searching around Pinterest (here is the board where I pin ideas I find). This was my model for this week’s letter craft.
I read Freight Train by Donald Crews to the kids and then we used the free train print outs that match the book to do various learning activities. We matched them up in the order of the book, practiced identifying colors, and hid them around the room so they had to find them when I called the color.
We took turns wearing this hat and playing Follow the Conductor as we ran around outside in a human train. My two year old daughter had a hard time keeping up when her friend was the conductor so she quickly became the ‘loose caboose’ which the kids had fun with.
For this activity I put some of my letter magnets in different spots on our train table and then told one kid at a time to drive their train to a certain letter. This helped them practice recognizing letters as well as problem solving as they looked for the best way to get their train to that location.
We made graham cracker trains for our snack.
These are the books we read spread throughout our lesson:
Chugga- Chugga Choo- Choo by Kevin Lewis is one of the most read board books in our house. It basically just describes a toy train moving around a boy’s room, but the words flow really well for a read aloud and the detailed illustrations are engaging.
The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper is a classic that doesn’t really need an introduction! We have a board book version that has got a lot of love.
Shark Vs. Train by Chris Barton is a story is from the perspective of two boys having their toy train and toy shark battle and is goes into all the different situations to see who would win. If your kids love having things battle each other and comparing strengths this one would be a good choice for them.
On the Train by Carron Brown and Bee Johnson is one of the Usborne Shine-A-Light books where you hold up a flashlight behind the page to see a picture revealed. Some of the concepts it talks about are a little advanced for the age group I was teaching, but shining a light to find hidden pictures was really fun and they wanted to read the book a second time.
We always end the lesson with reading Chicka Chicka Boom Boom and adding the featured letter to our coconut tree.
The other T lesson I’ve done is T is for Tree. If you want any details on this lesson, don’t hesitate to ask.