Thursday, January 13, 2011


Keeping a calendar is a great way to follow the rhythm of days and months and also to practice simple observation and recording skills. Here's the type of calendar I find appropriate for 2 year olds.

We first talk about the month. I have a cute set of month labels, and of course January is the only one that's been misplaced (it was gifted from a friend and she had lost it), but typically the name of the month is written with beautiful illustrations of different objects and activities that go with the month. We talk about the first letter of the month and also the pictures on the sign and, of course, who we know that has a birthday that month. We also sing the "Months" song. I believe the version I use is from Dr. Jean.

Next we talk about the days of the week. We sing the days of the week song and hold up seven fingers, lowering them as we say the days. Then I lay out 3 days and ask Q to find whatever day it is currently. I prompt her by saying, "Today is Thursday. Thursday starts like Trent." She then clips Thursday up on the front of the yellow pocket, and puts the remaining days inside the pocket.

At this point we don't focus on the days of the month--her attention span is limited and she isn't ready for the numbers and counting portion yet. One thing I love about doing calendar this way is that if we don't get to calendar every day, it doesn't matter. When you put up the numbers for the days of the month, if you miss a day, it doesn't work as well. We try to do calendar every day, but sometimes we do our singing and talking about the month, days, weather in the car or on a walk and don't get around to actually putting up the cards.

We sing "What's the Weather" and observe the weather out the window. Q puts up a card that shows today's weather--sunny, cloudy, rainy or snowy (ha!). She puts the others back into the pocket.

We also practice counting during Calendar time. First we count to 10 in a BIG HUGE voice and pump our muscles. Then we count to 10 in a TEENY TINY voice and touch our pinkies together. Q loves this! Then we count how many "friends" are present for Calendar that day (of course the majority are stuffed animals and dolls, and sometimes even our dog and cat). We put up a number card to show how many friends are here.

Calendar lasts about 5 minutes in all and is a part of our Morning Circle Time.

Here's a picture from a December Circle Time (excuse the jammies--we were on vacation!) so you can see my prettier month signs and also our "friends" who come to Circle Time. We are singing the Days of the Week song.
Sidenote: I always request that Q sets out a chair, pillow or rug for each "friend" attending circle time. This requires her to practice one-to-one correspondance by putting one animal/baby in each chair/rug/pillow. It also limits the number of participants to a reasonable number--when the spots are gone, no more friends can come till tomorrow. Otherwise she'd love to bring every stuffed animal and doll she owns. Yikes!
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