When I’m Sleepy, by J.R. Howard

            This story has lovely illustrations of a little girl asleep with a variety of animals.  It is a fun book to re-read before nap time and to talk about how wonderful a nice bed is for sleep.

Materials

            Animal BINGO game

Bear flannel pieces

4-5 stuffed animals or rubber animals

Vocabulary

Before Reading the Story

            Ask the children if they know why a good nights sleep is important (When we sleep our bodies grow.  Our bodies need the night sleep to rest up and get ready for a busy day.  We think better when we are not sleepy).  Tell the children everybody needs to sleep, children, parents, and even animals.

Physical Health & Development/Health Status & Practices; builds awareness and ability to follow basic health and safety rules such as fire safety, traffic and pedestrian safety, and responding appropriately to potentially harmful objects, substances, and activities.

  Ask the children if anyone has a pet dog at home.  Have you ever watched it sleep?  How can you tell it is asleep?   Tell the children that you are going to pretend that you are sleeping dogs.  Have the children lie on their sides and relax their bodies.  Ask them to pretend that they are dreaming about running in the back yard and begin to move their arms and legs like they are running.  Tell them to lay very still now and think about how a mother bird might sleep.  Let the children respond and then say birds often sleep standing on a branch.  Ask the children to stand and pretend to curl their toes around a branch.  Have them bend their knees slightly and tilt their head forward until their chin is touching their chest.  Do you think sleeping like a bird would be easy?  Have the children sit down.  Ask them if they have ever seen a fish in the fish tank that looks like it is just sitting there and not moving?  That’s when the fish is asleep.  Have the children put their hands on their waist and push their elbows backwards then move them slightly in and out. 

Creative Arts/Dramatic Play; participates in a variety of dramatic play activities that become more extended and complex.

Tell the children that all living creatures need to sleep in order to grow big and strong.  Say that people are lucky because we get to sleep on nice comfortable beds.  Ask them if they sleep with anything that makes their bed especially comfortable (blanket, pillow, stuffed animal, sister, soft pajamas).

Social & Emotional Development/Self-Concept; begins to develop and express awareness of self in terms of specific abilities, characteristics, and preferences.

Reading the Story;

            As you read the story, have the children name the animals on each page. 

Literacy/Book Knowledge & Appreciation; shows growing involvement in listening to and discussing a variety of fiction and non-fiction books and poetry.

After Reading the Story

            Ask the children to recall the animals of the story.  Do you remember how or where they were sleeping?  Do a quick review of why we need a good night’s sleep.  Tell them that babies need the most sleep and adults need the least.  But children need lots of sleep because your bodies are growing bigger and getting stronger every single day. Let the children talk about their bedtime rituals and sleeping habits.

Approaches to Learning/Initiative & Curiosity; grows in eagerness to learn about and discuss a growing range of topics, ideas, and tasks.

Discovery

            Make a height chart of your children.  If you already have a height chart, revisit it and up-date children’s heights.  Note how big they have grown.  On the bottom of the height chart mark 20 inches.  Tell the children this is about how tall they were when they were born. As you mark each child, help them see where their measurement stands in relation to the rest of the children. (Look Anna, you are the same height as Lisa, Look Anna, this is where you were when we measured you last and you have grown all the way to here!).

Mathematics/Patterns & Measurement; shows progress in using standard and non-standard measures of length and area.

Music and Movement

Teach the children the poem, You Have to Eat Good Food by F Koch.

You have to eat good food to grow, grow, grow

You have to exercise to grow, grow, grow

You have to sleep at night to grow, grow, grow

Take good care of yourself. 

Give yourself a giant hug, because you deserve it!

Physical Health & Development/Health Status & Practices; builds awareness and ability to follow basic health and safety rules such as fire safety, traffic and pedestrian safety, and responding appropriately to potentially harmful objects, substances, and activities.

Sing 5 Bears In the Bed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wv4Utm-OJK8 Or teach it is Spanish! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nB0JlJB-DYE Use fingers to designate the bears, or make flannel bears that you can use. Write a number 1-5 on each bear.

Mathematics/Number & Operations; begins to associate number concepts, vocabulary, quantities, and written numerals in meaningful ways.

                                                                       

Blocks

            Ask the children if they can make beds for the stuffed animals.

Mathematics/Patterns & Measurement; shows progress in using standard and non-standard measures of length and area. AND Approaches to Learning/Engagement & Persistence; demonstrates increasing ability to set goals and develop[ and follow through on plans.

Art

            Make laced up pillows.  Punch holes around pieces of 5×7 construction paper.  The holes should be one inch apart.  Let each child take two pieces of construction paper and hold them together.  Give each child a piece of yarn with masking tape wrapped around one end and show them how to lace it in and out of the holes.  After they have laced three sides, let them stuff it with pieces of squished paper towel and finish lacing.

Physical Health & Development/Fine Motor Skills; grows in hand-eye coordination in building with blocks, putting together puzzles, reproducing shapes, and patterns, stringing beads, and using scissors.

            Put plastic fish in to the water table.  The children can pretend to make them swim around and then let them sleep. Add a net for catching and counting fish. If you do not have plastic fish, ask the children if they can think of a manipulative that you have that they could use as pretend fish. (Children have suggested crayons, legos, counting bears, and popsicle sticks).

Creative Arts/Dramatic play; shows growing creativity and imagination in using materials and in assuming different roles in dramatic play situations.

Library and Writing

            Put out black construction paper and white chalk for night time writing and drawing.

Literacy/Early Writing; experiments with a growing variety of writing tools and materials, such as pencils, crayons, and computers.

Dramatic Play

            Add stuffed animals and oversized pajamas for a different twist on night time play.

Creative Arts/Dramatic PLay; participates in a variety of dramatic play activities that become more extended and complex.

Math and Manipulatives

            Make bingo boards using different animals from the animal page.  6-8 per board is a good amount for young children. Make a copy of the animal page to use for the call cards.  Play until everyone gets bingo.  Can the children name the different kinds of animals?

Social & Emotional Development/Cooperation; develops increasing abilities to give and take in interactions; to take turns in games and using materials; and to interact without being overly submissive or directive. AND Approaches to Learning/Engagement & Persistence; grows in abilities to persist in and complete a variety of tasks, activities, projects, and experiences.

Outdoor Pay

            Play sleepy tag.  The teacher tries to catch the children.  The children can drop to the ground and pretend to be asleep.  If the teacher catches a child before they fall asleep, they must go to the bed (a designated tree or bench on the playground).  If another child who is not in the bed touches the bed, all the children in it may run free.  The game continues until the teacher is exhausted.

Physical Health & Development/Health Status & Practices; participates actively in games, outdoor play, and other forms of exercise that enhance physical fitness.

Transitions

Hold up one of the BINGO cards and ask the children to name and then act out how that animal sleeps.

Creative Arts/Dramatic Play; participates in a variety of dramatic play activities that become more extended and complex.

Resources

The Kissing Hand, by Audrey Penn

            Chester was about to begin his first day of school and he was scared.  See how his mother helps him to overcome his fears in a gentle loving way.

Materials

  • Lots of small pre-cut hearts
  • Manila file

Vocabulary

  • Raccoon (A small ring-tailed animal that sleeps during the day and comes out at night)
  • Nocturnal (All animals that sleep mostly during the day and come out at night to eat and play)

Before Reading the Story

            If this is the first week of school you can introduce the book by saying you know it feels kind of scary right now at school. But you will soon have lots of new friends.  Talk about things that you will be doing at school in the near future (later we will get to go out on the playground and ride the bicycles, after breakfast we can get out play dough).  Tell the children that they are all being very brave and that it will be ok.  Let them know that you are there to make them feel safe and to have fun.

Social & Emotional Development/Social Relationships; demonstrates increasing comfort in talking with and accepting guidance and directions from a range of familiar adults.

            If you are reading this book at any other time, talk about how sometimes we do things that feel scary but after we do them we know that it was not so hard.  Ask the children to try to think of examples (I rode my bike with no trainer wheels and I fell, I climbed to the top of the big slide, I ate that food on my plate, I slept in the room all by myself).  Tell the children each time that they were brave.

Social & Emotional Development/Self-Concept; demonstrates growing confidence in a range of abilities and expresses pride in accomplishments.

Reading the Story

            On the page where Chester’s Mother shows him what a kissing hand is, stop and kiss your own hand and then when she tells him how to rub it on his cheek, do on yours. Encourage the children to follow your example.

Language Development/Listening & Understanding; demonstrates increasing ability to attend to and understand conversations, stories, songs, and poems.

After Reading the Story

            Turn to the last page with all the animals in the tree.  Tell the children that this is Chester’s school, have you ever seen a school like this?  Ask them if they can tell what time it is?  Can you name some of the nocturnal animals in the picture? 

Science/Scientific Knowledge; develops a growing awareness of ideas and language related to the attribute of time and temperature.

Discovery

            In the story, Chester used his mouth for kissing his mother’s hand.  What other things do we use our mouth for?  Put mirrors in the center so the children can look at their mouths.  Help the children name the parts of the mouth (teeth, gum, tongue, lips)? 

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; begins to use senses and a variety of tools and simple measuring devices to gather information, investigate materials, and observe processes and relationships. AND Language & Development/Speaking & Communicating; uses an increasingly complex and varied spoken language.

Music and Movement

Teach the children the song, I’m Thinking of a Name.  On individual pieces of paper, write each child’s name.  Hold up one name at a time and cover all but the first letter of the name with another piece of paper.

I’m Thinking of a Name (sung to All Around the Mulberry Bush)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FTgxW32ie5E

I’m thinking of a name that starts with _____,

Starts with _______, Starts with ________.

I’m thinking of a name that starts with _____.

Do you know the name?

(slowly pull the paper across the letters to reveal the name.  As you pull, pronounce the letter sounds as you go)

Literacy/Early Writing; develops an understanding that writing is a way of communicating for a variety of purposes. AND Literacy/Alphabet Knowledge; increases ability to notice the beginning letters of familiar words.

Blocks

Make markings on the shelves to show the children how to put the blocks away neatly. Explain that when Chester, and they, were new at school, they also had to learn where and how to put the toys away. Encourage the children to pull out the blocks and carefully put them back according to their shapes and sizes.

Literacy/Early Writing; develops an understanding that writing is a way of communicating for a variety of purposes. AND Mathematics/’Geometry & Spatial Sense; shows growth in matching, sorting, putting in series, and regrouping objects according to one or two attributes such as shape or size.

Art

            Let the children use stamp pads and make handprints onto a large piece of paper.  Cut out hearts that they can then glue to the palm of each hand.  Older children can trace around a heart shape and cut it out themselves. Label the pictures ‘The heart is you.  The hand is me.  It says I love my family”.  Have the children look carefully at their hand print.  Note the lines and patterns that make up your hand print.

Physical Health & Development/Fine Motor Skills; develops growing strength, dexterity, and control needed to use tools such as scissors, paper punch, stapler, and hammer. AND Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; develops increased ability to observe and discuss common properties, differences and comparisons, and form generalizations.

Sand and Water

            Dampened sand.  Show the children how to make sand castles and hand prints in the damp sand.

Physical Health & Development/Fine Motor Skills; develops growing strength, dexterity, and control needed to use tools such as scissors, paper punch, stapler, and hammer.

Library and Writing

            On a manila file cut out a heart shape.  The children can then trace around the heart, cut it out and write their name on it.

Physical Health & Development/Fine Motor Skills; develops growing strength, dexterity, and control needed to use tools such as scissors, paper punch, stapler, and hammer. AND Literacy/Early Writing; progresses from scribbles, shapes, or pictures to represent ideas, to using letter-like symbols, to copying or writing familiar words such as their own name.

Dramatic Play

            Bring in ‘school supplies’ (pencils, paper, lunchbox, book sack, three ring binder). Encourage the children to play school and to do writing.

Literacy/Early Writing; experiments with a growing variety of writing tools and materials, such as pencils, crayons, and computers.

Math and Manipulatives

            On a piece of paper write each child’s name.  Cut out many small hearts from construction paper.  Ask the children to glue a heart underneath each letter of their name.  Ask the children to count their hearts to see how many letters are in their name.  You can graph these on the wall by the number of letters in each child’s name.  Who has the least, which has the most?

Language Development/Listening & Understanding; shows progress in understanding and following simple and multiple-step directions. AND Mathematics/Number & Operations; begins to associate number concepts, vocabulary, quantities, and written numerals in meaningful ways.

Outdoor Play

            Tell the children to pretend that they are walking to school.  Can you walk very fast?  Can you walk backwards, in a curved line, zigzag line, on your tiptoes?  Can you skip to school or gallop?

Physical Health & Development/Gross Motor Skills;shows increased levels of proficiency, control, and balance in walking, climbing, running, jumping, hopping, skipping, marching, and galloping.

Transitions

Play I’m Thinking of a Child. Say I’m thinking of a child who has red hair and is wearing yoga pants and a T-shirt with letters on it. Let the children guess. If the children are just learning names, you could say,”Yes, I was thinking og Jenny”.

Social & Emotional Development/Social Relationships; shows progress in developing friendships with peers.

Resources

Shelves are labeled to keep blocks neat and in order.

Too Much Noise, by Ann McGovern

            What happens when all the noises of the house keep you awake at night?

Materials

Vocabulary

  • Burro (another name for a donkey)

Before Reading the Story

            Ask the children what we use our ears for.  Talk about the importance of ears and how to take care of your ears (avoid really loud sounds/music, do not put things in your ears).    Explain that some people can not hear well or at all with their ears.  Ears sometimes get plugged and you can not hear very well but a doctor can help you to hear better.  If ever you think your ears are not hearing well, tell an adult. Tell the children that some people’s ears do not work properly.  Mime a sentence.Talk about being deaf or wearing a hearing aid.

Physical Health & Development/Health Status & Practices; bui.lds awareness and ability to follow basic health and safety rules such as fire safety, traffic and pedestrian safety, and responding appropriately to potentially harmful objects, substances, and activities.

Reading the Story

            Explain that today’s story is about a man whose ears work too good and he heard all kinds of sounds at night.  Ask them if they can guess what is going to happen? Introduce the book.

Literacy/Book Knowledge & Appreciation; demonstrates progress in abilities to retell and dictate stories from books and experiences; to act out stories in dramatic play; and to predict what will happen next in a story.

After Reading the Story

            Ask the children why they think the wise man had the old man get a cow and a burro and a dog and a cat? 

Literacy/Book Knowledge & Appreciation; shows growing interest and involvement in listening to and discussing a variety of fiction, non-fiction and poetry. AND Language Development/Listening & Understanding; demonstrates increasing ability to attend to and understand conversations, stories, songs, and poems.

Have the children sit very quietly for a minute.  Then ask them to help list some of the sounds that they heard.

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; develpps growing abilities to colllect, describe, and record information threough a variety of means, including discussion, drawings, maps, and charts.

Discovery

            Make a tape recording ahead of time of familiar household sounds (vacuum, water dripping, shower, door bell, dog barking, car driving by, horn).  Put the tape on and let the children listen and try to identify the sounds.

Approaches to Learning/Reasoning & Problem-Solving; grows in recognizing and solving problems through active exploration, including trial and error, and interactions and discussions with peers and adults.

Make a set of animal ears and the animals that they belong to. Can the children identify the correct ears to the correct animal?

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; develops increased ability to observe and discuss common properties, differences, and comparisons among objects and materials.

Music and Movement

            Sing the alphabet song.  The second time around start off very softly and get louder and louder.  The third time start off loudly and get softer and softer.

Literacy/Alphabet Knowledge; knows that letters of the alphabet are a special category of visual graphics that can be individually named.

            Use you classroom instruments.  Can you play loudly?  Can you play softly?  Have the children sort the instruments by those that make loud sounds and those that make quiet sounds.

Creative Arts/Music; experiments with a variety of musical instruments.

            Sing, Do Your Ears Hang Low https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aH7A_pBOTkY

Do your ears hang low

Do they wobble to and fro

Can you tie them in a knot

Can you tie them in a bow?

Can you throw them over your shoulder

Like a strong brave soldier

Do your ears hang low?

Language Development/Listening & Understanding; demonstrates increasing ability to attend to and understand conversations, stories, songs, and poems.

Blocks

            Challenge the children to build a house.  Can they make it have a window and a door?

Approaches to Learning/Engagement & Persistence; demonstrates increasing ability to set goals and develop and follow through on plans.

Art

            Bring in clay or play dough to pound and roll.

Creative Arts/Art; gains ability tin using different art media and materials in a variety of ways for creative expression and representation.

Library and Writing

            Bring in books with pictures animals and note their ears. (Look at this rabbit’s ears; he must be able to hear really well.  Look at this dog’s ears, they hang down)

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; develops increased ability to observe and discuss common properties, differences, and comparisons among objects and materials.

Sand and Water

            Use water today.  Add containers that allow the water to pour at different rates (sprinkle, rush, splashing).  Talk about the sounds of the water as it flows from the container back into the water table.

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; develops increased ability to observe and discuss common properties, differences, and comparisons among objects and materials.

Dramatic Play

            Act out night time rituals.  Encourage the children to snore as they sleep.

Creative Arts/ Dramatic PLay; participates in a variety of dramatic play activities that become more extended and complex.

Math and Manipulatives

            Hold two Popsicle sticks side by side and draw a shape that covers both (square).  Do this with a number of sets of Popsicle sticks.  Put all the sticks in a bowl and encourage the children to make the matching sets.

Mathematics/Geometry & Spatial Sense; shows growth in matching, sorting, putting in series, and regroup objects according to one or two attributes such as color, shape, or size.

Outdoor Play

            Sit outside and listen to all the sounds that pass through the play ground.  Do you hear any voices that you recognize?  Do you hear any birds or cars?  Listen carefully and you might hear an insect fly by.

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; begins to use senses and a variety of tools and simple measuring devices to gather information, investigate materials and observe processes and relationships.

Transitions

            Ask the children to listen carefully to the letter sounds that you make.  If their name begins with this letter sounds they may go to the next activity. /K/K/Kerry

Literacy/Phonological Awareness; shows growing awareness of beginning and ending sounds of words.

Resources

Thank you Buzz Feed for these animals and their ears.