Sunday, August 29, 2010

Tot School: Days 1-5

I have already changed our plans! We moved into a new room and started a new plan with my preschooler so tot school is taking place there too. We are counting the days of school so I think from now on I will tell you what days we have done instead of what week or month or whatever. So these activities took place over 2 weeks but we did 5 days of school.

Our new "school room" is in our laundry room. Both girls have loved the new set up and everything is running pretty smoothly. I will post pictures of the space as soon as I know it is going to work. My tot tray method has changed a little too. I am trying to leave out as much of the same thing for the whole week as possible. I am only changing out what did not go well (too hard, too easy, etc.) and I leave the trays out where she can get them out and put them up by herself. I have had a few occurences of sneaking in while I am not looking and playing with the trays but so far it is working out well (but it has only been 5 days). I do not leave scissors, markers, glue, paint, etc out.


Do A Dot

She loved this! I love it too because it is not as messy as regular paint.


She is getting so much better at puzzles!

Matching Bears

This came with our Sonlight P3/4 curriculum and both girls like these sturdy bears.

Snipping Paper

Big sister was working on some cutting, so she had to also!

Color Sort

I tried this two different ways. Sorting into the plastic cups was better than sorting on the circles. She really liked the colored popsicle sticks, I got them at the dollar tree.

Dry Erase

This is probably her favorite thing to do. I have several different boards and markers and she loves them all!

Spilt Milk art

This was an impromptu activity for big sister that Lyla got to help with. Both girls absolutely loved doing this. I used a whole container of white craft paint. We would have been making these pictures all day if we would have had enough paint! Basic directions: glob of paint in center of paper, fold in half, open and see what it looks like. We did this after reading the book "It Looked Like Spilt Milk". After all the papers were dry, I stapled them together, and we made our own Spilt Milk book. It turned out great!


I don't have any pictures, but we were able to spend more time outside thanks to a dip in the heat and humidity. We also went to a pool party (again, no pictures) and The Children's Museum of Memphis (where is my camera?).

My preschooler (Abby, 5) has a brain tumor and is a patient at St Jude Children's Research Hospital. She was diagnosed over a year ago and despite all the doctors predictions, she is doing great. We have not had to undergo any treatment (she did have brain surgery and they removed a portion of her brain) and the tumor has remained stable (has not grown). It covers about 30% of her brain but she has no side effects (other than seizures which are controlled by medication). We travel to Memphis to St Jude every 3 months for an MRI which tells us if the tumor is growing or not. Last week we had to go back for an MRI, and thankfully, the tumor is still stable.

Lyla went with us this time and was wonderful! We usually don't take her with us because it is a time of great anxiety and it is hard to listen to all the doctors and nurses with a 5 year old and 2 year old running around. I am so glad that she was able to go. It put her sister at ease and they both had a great time together. St Jude is an incredible place and there is so much for the kids to do while there. The city of Memphis also is great and we get discounts on lots of attractions, including the Children's Museum. It makes our trip so much better!

Lyla worries about her sister and shows so much compassion for her. After the MRI, Abby was very groggy and couldn't hold her cookie, she kept dropping it. Lyla picked it up and fed it to her. She stroked her hair and talked sweet words to her. My heart melted. Lyla had to be left behind a lot during the initial diagnosis and surgery and everything that went along with it. She still seems to get left out because everyone asks about Abby wherever we go. We try not to make that difference at home, but I know that God will use this to make her a strong, compassionate person. She already is! If you want to read more about our journey, go to my other blog, Abby's Army. And please pray for my sweet girls!

That's how we did Tot School! Go check out the other entries at 1+1+1=1!


  1. Thanks for sharing about your sweet girls!! It looks like you've had a lot of fun- & you have such a great space... perfect for messes & fun... I'm now wishing for a bigger laundry room- LOL!
    I also appreciate you sharing about Abby- what a difficult time for you, but a time that you are learning to rely fully on God, thank-you for letting your heart for Him shine through. How precious that Lyla was such a comfort to her sister!!
    Praying for you!

  2. Looks like you had some fun activities for your little one.

    It is always nice to have a space to do tot school. I turned my dining room into a school room. We didn't have dining room table anyway.

    I will be praying for your little girls.

  3. What I'm awesome week! I hope your new space works out well for you.

    Sorry to hear about your daughter's condition but I'm glad that she's doing well. I'll be sure to keep your family in my prayers.

  4. We are big fans of do-a-dots around here too. And I just added a tracing letters mat and dry erase board to my son's "learning boxes" for tomorrow, and I know it will be a huge hit. This is our first week linking up with tot school - can't wait to keep seeing everyone's ideas from week to week. I'm sorry to hear about your daughter, but glad that the tumor is stable - will pray for good things for her.

  5. Hi,
    I'm back to visit your blog again. I like the sorting activities you were doing. You give some good ideas of things to get at the Dollar store too. We got the dot paint but haven't used it yet. I know that'll be fun.

    Thank you for the courage of sharing your journey with Abby. What a wonderful story about sisterly love. Thank the Lord her tumor is stable. Will be praying for Abby and your family.