Monday, February 17, 2014

katy and the big snow - five in a row style

After finishing The Snowy Day, we spent another week or so rowing a different snow book, Katy and the Big Snow by Virginia Lee Burton.The fact that this book involved tractors/bulldozers and maps made it a big hit with Bubby. He is very into maps right now. Almost every day he spends some time with his neat USA wipe-off map he got for Christmas. We need to put up the world map that he just received. Seriously, the kid loves maps. But I digress.

The pattern of some of the sentences in this book made it fun and easy for reading several days in a row. Bubby loved saying, "Sure....follow me." and both boys liked when I made the "chug chug chug" noise that Katy had in her thought bubble in some of the illustrations. The little details in the seemingly simple illustrations really held our interest.

Each time we got out Katy and the Big Snow, Bubby had to spend some time looking at the Geopolis map. We talked about the cardinal directions, but we didn't spend a lot of time on that concept since they are preschoolers. I put out large pieces of paper (actually cut apart grocery bags), and the boys and I spent some time trying to draw our own maps. (With Bugaboo we just worked on his fine motor skills of using a marker.) I had one idea in mind for a map, and Bubby had a completely different idea of what it should look like.

We got out the shaving cream for a sensory activity since it looks like snow.  One day when it started snowing, Bubby requested to go outside and catch snowflakes on his tongue, so we did that even though we were still in our pajamas.  The next day I brought the snow inside in a big container.  We got out some of the hot wheel cars and the traffic signs from the train set, and the boys spent time digging "roads" in the snow. And of course they just played in it. Bugaboo wasn't really thrilled with either of these sensory activities.

In addition to reading this book, we read books about how snow forms.  Some other snow-themed books we read to go along with Katy and the Big Snow were: Carl's Snowy Afternoon by Alexandra Day, Snow by Uri Shulevitz, Snow by Valerie Boden, Snow by Erin Edison, and my favorite of the week, Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner. Over and Under had a poetic feel as well as a lot of great information and pictures about wildlife in winter.

We measured and marked on the door with sticky notes the different stages of the snow storm in Geopolis.  It was neat to show the boys how tall five feet of snow would be. I also measured the boys to see how tall they were compared to the snow.

We also did a freezing experiment. Bubby and I decided on some various liquids (or semi-liquids) to put in an ice tray, and then we all predicted which would freeze first and last.

After finishing Katy and the Big Snow, we have taken a break from some Five in a Row books, and have instead read some classic children's stories as well as continued with a winter-theme and have read some books on hibernation. (I hope to write about that.) I am not sure what we will do next, but I do know we are all ready for spring!

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