Of course our lessons in science began with several books, a few of which I have mentioned before. Keep in mind, of course, that baby bookworm is only 17 months so we're not exactly following the scientific method here but I thought all of these books and activities were a good place to start learning about the process of observation, transformation, and exploration.
1) Jamberry by Bruce Degen
|Ready to make some "jam"!|
|Smashing up her blueberries|
Heads by Matthew Van Fleet
This is a touch and feel animal book. A very nice one. So nice that I hope you don't make the mistake I did and leave your baby bookworm play with it unattended. This book deserves a proper spot on your bookshelf that is out of reach from those little bookworm paws. On each page is a pull out flap that makes one of the animals do something fun (like sneeze). Baby bookworm really enjoys this book and now that some of the pages are already destroyed I let her play with it freely. And when she comes to a page where an animal is missing it's whole head she'll actually say "hippo rip it" as if she's confirming the fact that she has ripped the head off the hippo. This book introduces a lot of fun words and vocabulary through the touch and feel aspect (words such as scratchy, sticky, smooth).
Playing off of this favorite book I decided we could make our own feely collage. So I found some things around the house that differed in texture such as cotton pads, stickers, band-aids, and sand and we glued them to a sheet of white paper. I asked baby bookworm to observe what was different about these things (of course, a lot of this is having a conversation with myself, but that's OK). We talked about "rough", "soft", "smooth", and "sticky". She kept asking for the "rough one," which was the sand, and then I realized she thought it was food, licked her finger and said "rough, good"! But, at least she learned a new word. The possibilities with this activity are of course endless - I would love to hear about some other creative ideas.
|Our Feely Collage|
The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle
This is a long, long book so I paraphrase it (for details about this book see my post on 5/5/11). In a nutshell its about a seed who flies through the wind, in and out of seasons, and eventually plants itself into the ground and grows.
For this science lesson, baby bookworm and I grew our own flower. I actually came across a flower kit that went with this book at the store Five Below. It came with 3 seeds, a tablet of dirt that you had to wet and mix to make the soil, a flowerpot and a terrarium. So we planted our little seeds, watered them, and sure enough they grew (well, two of them did anyway). This activity was a great opportunity to talk about how flowers need sunlight and water to grow. Each morning I would show baby bookworm the flower at breakfast and we'd measure it with a ruler (a little math lesson thrown in). Well, sure enough, she learned the word "grow" quite easily. If your child is a little older this lesson would be a great way to introduce the concept of a graph or chart too - as you could easily graph the growth of the flower. You could even make predictions about how much the flower might grow in one night (this particular kit was great because the flower grew really quickly). Don't forget about introducing the concepts of inches and feet too!
I can't wait until baby bookworm actually is old enough to understand and use the scientific method to investigate her questions. I will TOTALLY be one of those parents who is psyched about that first science fair project!