Day 1: We started out our new mini unit with handprint goldfish. Rowen imitated Damien’s handprint skills so it turned out to be fairly easy (it takes FOREVER for little kids, at least in my experience, to learn how to uncurl their fingers to make handprints.) They were both interested in their snack, another easy one – ‘fishing’ for goldfish crackers with peanut butter on pretzel sticks – but I gave them way too much so we ended up with a lot of leftovers. (Update: by dinner time, Rowen had consumed all the leftovers. Leave it to my little garbage disposel! lol)
We also made ‘nature islands’, which I thought would be overly complicated for them – we had to paint the plates, make the play dough, find the nature items, and then make the island – but actually they loved every step! (Actually, Rowen napped through the clay-making step, but other than that he enjoyed everything.) Finding ‘nature’ in our city apartment neighborhood was a little bit challenging, but it only took a few leaves and sticks and the occasional pine needle to make the boys happy.
Day 2: Our craft was the teeny popsicle stick fish you see down there (they’re not really tiny, I just took a bad picture of them.) Rowen’s is purple and green, and Damien’s is red, orange, and green (and yes, he did it a lot more independently than Rowen, which is why it doesn’t look quite as even.) We also made an ocean sensory bag with blue hair gel, glitter, flat ocean toys, and non-sharp shells, and the boys were really into it. I didn’t quite have enough hair gel to fill the gallon freezer bag (which I reinforced with packing tape btw), but it’s still fun! And as for the cupcakes… well, we didn’t have enough M&Ms to make the scales look right, so they’re looking a little bird-like… but the kids didn’t care and gobbled them up!
Day 3: We had a busy day (my parents were in town for the morning, plus we were packing/getting ready to go to the coast for the weekend) so we didn’t do as much today. Rowen wasn’t into either our science activity or our snack, but Damien loved both – watching a video about fish life cycles, arranging a fish life cycle (he did one of his own too), and ‘spelling’ with goldfish crackers (if you couldn’t tell, the last one was the snack, haha.) We skipped our craft today – kids just weren’t into it.
Day 4: The boys wanted to read extra books this morning, which was awesome! We attempted to make ocean sensory dough and it was a lot harder than I was expected. I actually found the stuff you make on the stove easier to make, and had a hard time getting the texture right inside a ziploc bag (even though the only ingredients were conditioner and corn starch…) Oh well, it smells really good. We also did the craft we were supposed to do on Day 3 – fork pufferfish, which turned out very cute. I decided to use a paper plate because I have so many of them, and the crinkled sides kind of look like fins already.
We finished off with everything we skipped during previous days. The fish with cupcake wrapper scales were just a random clip art from Google, but they turned out pretty cute. Damien and I did a science experiment to explain how fish breathe while Rowen was napping – we put coffee grounds in water and pretended the coffee was oxygen. We poured the water through coffee filter ‘gills’ to show how the gills catch the oxygen but let the water through. (Technically the fish should have brought water in through its mouth and expelled it through its gills, but our jar fish analogue wasn’t that advanced, lol.) Our fish graham crackers were waaaay simpler than I was expecting, and they were fun to decorate too! (The ones I decorated were a lot more boring than the ones Damien decorated…)
Next week, we’re on to our Ocean Creatures unit, where we’ll learn about jellies and octopi (and any other random animals we decide to throw in there)!