Welcome to Preschool Powol Packets

I am so glad you're here!


I hope you love our new layout!

Here are a few tips to finding your way around!

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

// // Leave a Comment

A Dinosaur Made Me Sneeze -- A Rock Cycle Science Book!


Do your kids love dinosaurs?

Do they love rocks?

Are you teaching geology? or the rock cycle? 

If the answer to any of those is "Yes,"  you will love A Dinosaur Made Me Sneeze: A Rock Cycle Adventure!

A Dinosaur Made Me Sneeze

This book has been in production for more than a year, and I am super excited to announce that it is now fully illustrated by the brilliant Natasha Kostovska and in the final production stages!

Meet: Martin McHook:


Martin is the main character in this wild adventure through time! He is a smart, silly, sometimes acts before he thinks, and his love for dinosaurs and rocks is epic!

Meet: Grandma McHook:


Grandma McHook is normally a bit serious and definitely proper at the dinner table...but she has a soft spot for Martin and a wild streak that likes to break rules when nobody is expecting it!

Meet: T. Rex



T. Rex, the famous dinosaur who started it all! Did you know that Tyrannosaurus Rex only roamed the wilds for a little more than 2 million years?! 

Meet: The Many-lined Skink


The many-lined skink is one of very few animals who lived with both the great Tyrannosaurus Rex and with people in the modern-day western United States! This particular skink might have superpowers (like an unusually long life?), but we're not going to go into that here!

A Dinosaur Made Me Sneeze: A Rock Cycle Adventure:

A Dinosaur Made Me Sneeze is the hilarious story of how a prehistoric Tyrannosaurus Rex made Martin McHook sneeze (in a very inappropriate way)! As the story unfolds, you discover the rock cycle and see how rocks and the Earth change through time! During the pre-order time, you can get fantastic packages that include the book, digital files, and even rock packages! CHECK IT OUT HERE!! (on June 2nd!)

One of the things that I am most excited about this book is that it is an awesome tool to teach SO many geology topics! It can be used to tie in to a dinosaur theme, geologic time lessons, prehistoric animals, rock cycle lessons, types of rocks, minerals, soil, erosion, tectonic plates, asteroids, climate change, and more!

Here are just a few geology and dinosaur lessons and activities that I've done with my kids and with students I've had that tie into the book:

Mountain Building and Tectonic Plates Rock Experiment - Identification Rock Cycle Activity - Sedimentary Sandwiches T. Rex Anatomy Dinosaur Activity T. Rex Tracks - Dinosaur Activity Edible Sedimentary Rocks Edible Igneous Rocks Igneous Rocks Lesson Metamorphic Rocks Lesson Soil Lesson Sedimentary Rocks Lesson


As we prepare to release A Dinosaur Made Me Sneeze to the world, we are running a Kickstarter to take pre-orders and raise money for a hardcover print run. Please CLICK HERE to learn more and join the excitement! There are some sneak peeks at the inside of the story, some background "story behind the story," and more!  I even have some special treats for the first people to order a book, starting June 2nd!!

And feel free to reach out to me (Carla) at any point!  I am the author and publisher, so I love to hear from you!  I respond to emails at preschoolpackets@gmail.com!



Happy Educating,
Carla


Have you seen HEEP? It is a preschool homeschool curriculum! Learn more here!



Never miss another post again!  Sign up for our weekly updates newsletter and get links to all our posts once a week in your inbox!  Sign up here!! 



Read More

Saturday, May 9, 2020

// // Leave a Comment

Dinosaur Printables - 10 Days of Preschool Dinosaur Activities!

Do your preschoolers love dinosaur activities?
Do you love dinosaur printables?
If so, you will love this series that I'm writing next month!

Dinosaur Printables

Beginning on June 8, 2020, I will share a new dinosaur printable activity for preschoolers every weekday, until you can get all 10 for free!

There will be number activities, letter activities, science activities, logic activities, and more!

Dinosaurs have been a HUGE topic around here lately because I have written a new dinosaur-themed picture book that will be available for pre-order on June 2:

A Dinosaur Made Me Sneeze


A Dinosaur Made Me Sneeze is the hilarious story of how a prehistoric Tyrannosaurus Rex made Martin McHook sneeze (in a very inappropriate way)! As the story unfolds, you discover the rock cycle and see how rocks and the Earth change through time! During the pre-order time, you can get fantastic packages that include the book, digital files, and even rock packages! CHECK IT OUT HERE!! (on June 2nd!)

So, bookmark this page and pop back every weekday from June 8-19 to grab your new dinosaur-themed printable activities!! I will link them all below:

June 8
June 9
June 10
June 11
June 12
June 15
June 16
June 17
June 18
June 19

While you wait, be sure to check out my collection of dinosaur activities for preschoolers! This theme currently has more than a dozen roar-some things you can do in a dinosaur unit study!

Dinosaur Activities

I am also delighted to be joining several other fantastic bloggers to bring you the 10 Days of Homeschooling Tips!  These tips cover a huge range of resources--everything from "How-to's" to printables to unit studies and more! The complete collection will be available here at the end of May, and all the series will be live on June 8th! I think you'll love it!


Happy Educating,
Carla


Have you seen HEEP? It is a preschool homeschool curriculum! Learn more here!



Never miss another post again!  Sign up for our weekly updates newsletter and get links to all our posts once a week in your inbox!  Sign up here!! 



Read More

Monday, April 6, 2020

// // Leave a Comment

Preschool Music & Active Movement: Butterflies!

We're not meeting for out normal Preschool Music & Active Movement class this week because of the world-wide health situation,  but I decided I wanted to put together a list of music and a few printable activities in case any of my families wanted some themed activities for their preschoolers and toddlers.  Plus, my own kids have missed meeting, so we're going to have our own little Butterfly-themed Music Time and it's nice to have all the songs in one spot!


I target 3-4 year old kids when I put these lists together, but my almost-2 year old LOVES joining in too! When we meet in "real life" we have a couple 5-6 year olds join as well.  ;) 

1- Gathering time: play with musical instruments bin. This week I'm bringing out the ukuleles again to encourage the kids to make "butterfly wing" sounds on them.

2- Welcome Song.  This post has all the details on our welcome song and more background on the other regular songs too!

3- When I Sing LaLaLa by Janeen Brady. We do this and the welcome song with puppets:




4-  Butterfly Introduction Song:  The theme for this week is butterflies! Have you seen a butterfly before? Do you know what a "baby" butterfly looks like? This song covers the 4 stages of butterfly growth and is full of actions you and your kids can copy!



5- Butterfly!   The song starts at 50 seconds. Give each child a scarf, and sing the colors of the scarves you have (instead of yellow, orange, and purple).



6- Butterflies start life out as eggs, so...shaker egg song!  If you don't have shaker eggs, this is the perfect time of year to make them--put dry beans in plastic Easter eggs and tape or glue them closed!




7- Rhythm Sticks! Coordination practice! Tie a scarf around your kiddos so your children are butterflies! Give them rhythm sticks to clap while they fly around the room. If it's too easy, add in a simple obstacle course!

8- Butterfly Colors:  Print off colored butterflies, and as the song sings each color, move the correctly colored butterfly into the "sky!"


9- Parachute Butterflies: Put the colored butterflies on the parachute! Help them fly low, then high!

10- Butterfly Hibernators! Some butterflies hibernate! Make a parachute "mushroom," but let everyone jump inside it like hibernating butterflies. Then pretend it's spring and jump out!

11- Walk Around by Nancy Kopman. We walk around holding onto the parachute and doing the suggested actions in this song:




12- Goodbye Song.



I also have these fun butterfly activities that you can print and play with:






I hope you all stay well and we can start meeting together again soon! 



Happy Educating,
Carla


Have you seen HEEP? It is a preschool homeschool curriculum! Learn more here!




Never miss another post again!  Sign up for our weekly updates newsletter and get links to all our posts once a week in your inbox!  Sign up here!!




Read More

Saturday, April 4, 2020

// // Leave a Comment

STEM Preschool: Structural Engineering Class Day 2

STEM Preschool Activities are some of our favorites, so I was really excited when we had some friends request a Structural Engineering class for our last session of co-op. The co-op we are doing this year is running in 5-week terms, so the lesson that I am sharing today is the second day (for the second week) of our class. You can use these lessons once a week like we did, or once a day for a STEM Preschool Camp! Our classes are 45-minutes long, so all of these lessons are for 45-minute classes. :)  



Today's theme was all about forces and engineering ways to control them!

We called this project Paper Rockets.


Week 2: Stomp Rockets
Projects: Stomp Rockets
Science Concepts: force (a push or pull), gravity is a force

Lesson Overview:

1- Circle Sharing 

2- Attention Activity: Skateboard Forces

3- Lesson: Force & Gravity

4- Project: Stomp Rockets

Supplies: stomp rocket launcher (read below for instructions), 2-liter bottle, paper, crayons, tape, skateboard

Preparation:
1- In advance, join two 1/2-inch pvc pipes together at a 90 degree angle. Duct tape a 2-liter bottle to one end to create the stomp rocket launcher.
2- Make a paper rocket example (#4 below).

Lesson Details:

1- Circle Sharing: I always take about 5 minutes to let each child share something of their choice from the last week.

2- Attention Activity: Skateboard Forces.
Place a skateboard by the wall, and ask the children what a force is. Remind them that it is a push or pull.  Ask what would happen if one of the children stood on the skateboard, and pushed on the wall. Let each child try it.

3- Lesson: Whenever we put a force in one direction, there is an equal force in the opposite direction. When we pushed on the wall, the wall "pushed back," and since we were standing on wheels, we rolled backward.  Gravity is another FORCE that PULLS us (or a ball, or a toy, or anything) toward something big (like the Earth).  

4- Explain that today we were going to engineer paper rockets, and use a force to fire them outside! Show your children the rocket example, and place it gently on the launcher. Tell them that if you stomped on the 2-liter bottle, the force will push air out the bottle, down the pipes, and onto the rocket. The rocket will shoot off the launcher! Show them by gently tapping on the bottle.

Their job will be to make the rockets. They can decorate them with crayons, and roll them into a rocket. Depending on their age, they may need help with this.

Use the end of the pvc pipe to roll the paper into a rocket. Then tape the roll closed along both the side and the top. It is important that no air can escape through the sides or top of the rocket!

 


While the kids worked on decorating their rockets, the other teacher and I helped each child tape their rockets closed.

They spent about 20 minutes designing and taping their rockets.



Finally, we took them outside and took turns launching our rockets!



In a perfect world, you would sit down and review the vocabulary (force and gravity), and let each child tell you what they did, learned, or liked best about the project. Unfortunately, we ran out of time for this! We still had a great time building the rockets, and we did a little extra review at the beginning of the next class. ;)  

Be sure to check out the rest of the STEM Preschool: Structural Engineering Class lessons HERE! They are filled with STEM activities for preschoolers, picture books, and other cross-curricular ideas!

Happy Educating,
Carla


Have you seen HEEP? It is a preschool homeschool curriculum! Learn more here!




Never miss another post again!  Sign up for our weekly updates newsletter and get links to all our posts once a week in your inbox!  Sign up here!!




Read More

Monday, March 2, 2020

// // Leave a Comment

Preschool Music and Active Movement: Crocodile Theme

For our Preschool Music & Active Movement class this week, we focused on Crocodile songs! These songs and activities would also go great with a pond or river theme!


Here is the outline I used to teach our 45-minute class for 3-4 year olds. In addition to our preschoolers, we usually have a couple younger and older brothers and sisters join in too.  ;) 

1- Gathering time: play with musical instruments bin. 

2- Welcome Song. We usually do this with puppets--it makes a pretty smooth transition to clean up the gathering instruments and go and get a puppet. 

This time, I introduced my special friend, Cami ( a 3-foot long crocodile puppet)!

3- When I Sing LaLaLa by Janeen Brady. We do this and the welcome song with puppets:




4-  I introduced the theme and we talked about  crocodiles and what the kids know about crocodiles already. 

Then I pulled out the crocodile's friends: an orangutan (we had to use a stuffed gorilla), an eagle, a fish, a bunny, a beaver (I don't actually have any beaver toys, so we used a stick to represent the beaver), and an elephant. We made the sounds that each animal made, and then sang along with this song:


5- Shaker Eggs: Before I passed out the shaker eggs we talked about how crocodiles lay eggs and a mother crocodile usually carries her babies in her mouth to a river before she leaves them to grow up on their own:


6- Rhythm Sticks: We used the rhythm sticks to play "Copy Crocodile:" each child had a turn making a short rhythm that everyone else copied.

7- 5 Little Monkeys Teasing Mr. Crocodile. How could we have a crocodile week without this famous counting finger play song?!

We chanted it without accompaniment in a sing-song rhythm:

5 little monkeys swinging in the tree,
teasing Mr. Crocodile, "You can't catch me!
"You can't catch me!"
But along came Mr. Crocodile as silent as can be, 
and SNAP!
He ate one!

4 little monkeys swinging in the tree...
3 little monkeys swinging in the tree...
2 little monkeys swinging in the tree...
1 little monkey swinging in the tree...

No little monkeys swinging in the tree
teasing Mr Crocodile, "You can't catch me!
"You can't catch me!"
And Mr. Crocodile is happy as can be!
   

8- Let's go swimming. We didn't actually sing this one, but I wanted to have it ready if we had time for it! Crocodiles eat fish, so it ties in nicely!




9-  Parachute Game:10 Little Crocodiles: All the kids started out on the parachute while the adults made "waves."  We "sang" a counting rhyme. Each time we counted down, one or two kids hopped off.  You could use 5 Little Monkeys above or this rhyme:

10 little crocodiles sitting in the sea.
1 climbed out to sit quietly!

9 little crocodiles...

10- Parachute Game: Crocodiles: Every week we usually play some version of this game. 1 or 2 children start out as a "crocodile" and everyone else sits with their feet under the parachute. Everyone makes waves with the parachute while the crocodile crawls around under the parachute gently tickling people's toes. If your toes get tickled, you turn into a crocodile and climb under the parachute too!  

11- Parachute Song: Walk Around by Nancy Kopman. We walk around holding onto the parachute and doing the suggested actions in this song:



12- Goodbye Song.



Happy Educating,
Carla


Have you seen HEEP? It is a preschool homeschool curriculum! Learn more here!




Never miss another post again!  Sign up for our weekly updates newsletter and get links to all our posts once a week in your inbox!  Sign up here!!




Read More

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

// // Leave a Comment

STEM Preschool: Structural Engineering Class Day 1

STEM Preschool Activities are some of our favorites, so I was really excited when we had some friends request a Structural Engineering class for our last session of co-op. The co-op we are doing this year is running in 5-week terms, so the lesson that I am sharing today is the first day (for the first week) of our class. You can use these lessons once a week like we did, or once a day for a STEM Preschool Camp! Our classes are 45-minutes long, so all of these lessons are for 45-minute classes. :)  


Today's theme was all about introducing force and giving the kids a chance to engineer something fun!

We called this project Musical Marble Runs.


Week 1: Musical Marble Runs
Projects: Musical Marble Runs
Science Concepts: sound, gravity, force (a push or pull)

Lesson Overview:

1- Circle Sharing 

2- Picture Book: Iggy Peck Architect

3- Lesson: Force & Gravity

4- Project: Musical Marble Runs

Lesson Details:

1- Circle Sharing: I always take about 5 minutes to let each child share something of their choice from the last week.

2- Picture Book: Literacy is a HUGE part of preschool, and I LOVE introducing new topics to children (even older children!) with picture books. This week I started with Iggy Peck, Architect. As we read the story we talked about the pictures and what they thought about some of the crazy building projects. We also talked about gravity.

3- When we finished reading, I asked them if they knew what a force was.  We talked about their ideas, and then I told them that in science, we call a PUSH or a PULL a force.  We gave each other lots of examples!  Then I asked them what they thought gravity was. I told them that gravity is a FORCE that PULLS us (or a ball, or a toy, or anything) toward something big (like the Earth).  

4- I told them that we were going to engineer marble runs that will play a musical rhythm as the marble gets pulled down the path by gravity.  I had a VERY simple example set up--it was basically three stair-stepped blocks, but it let them see how the marble clink-clink-clinked down the path. It also gave us a starting point to look at building edges to keep the marbles on the path.

At this point, I turned the kids "loose" to start building! They spent about 20 minutes designing, building, and testing marble runs.

We made videos and took pictures, and spent the last 2 minutes of class time watching each other's videos--our preschoolers LOVE seeing themselves on camera!

Some of the designs were very intricate, some were fancy, and some were simple. They were all a joy to watch!



Be sure to check out the rest of the STEM Preschool: Structural Engineering Class lessons HERE! They are filled with STEM activities for preschoolers, picture books, and other cross-curricular ideas!

Happy Educating,
Carla


Have you seen HEEP? It is a preschool homeschool curriculum! Learn more here!




Never miss another post again!  Sign up for our weekly updates newsletter and get links to all our posts once a week in your inbox!  Sign up here!!




Read More

Sunday, February 23, 2020

// // Leave a Comment

Preschool Music & Active Movement: Firemen

For our Preschool Music & Active Movement class this week, we focused on Firefighter songs!


Here is the outline I used to teach our 45-minute class for 3-4 year olds. In addition to our preschoolers, we usually have a couple younger and older brothers and sisters join in too.  ;) 

1- Gathering time: play with musical instruments bin. This week I also brought out a set of boomwhackers for the kids to play with.

2- Welcome Song.

3- When I Sing LaLaLa by Janeen Brady. We do this and the welcome song with puppets:



4-  I introduced the theme and we talked about firetrucks we've seen. 
 I like to start with a song that gets the kids moving a lot because it helps everyone relax and focus at the same time.  I don't have any favorite firetruck action songs (feel free to recommend some!), and some fire stations have cars, so we used Drive My car from Laurie Bergner:


5- We talked about how firefighters are people just like them, and sometimes the get serious, or silly or even sleepy!  So I have a silly song to play our shaker eggs to today: Shake My Sillies Out from Raffia.  



6- I collected the shaker eggs and passed out rhythm sticks. We used the rhythm sticks to make a soft fire, a loud fire, and then put out the fire like firemen. 

7- Finger Play: 5 Little Firemen:  Make 5 firemen fingers and use your other hand to make a fire engine.  I taught the kids this combination sign (ASL) for "firetruck" and then we signed it every time we came to that part of the song.



8- Bells & Hurry, Hurry, Drive the Fire Truck:  I let each child choose two bells to play (one for each hand) at the end of each verse of this song. We reviewed how to play bells... and how not to play them.  The words are repetitive enough that they can sing along too, and alternating hands while playing (or attempting to play!) in rhythm is a skill that strengthens pre-reading, math, and coordination!


9- Parachute Fire: I tossed a few balloons and balls onto the parachute and we had to shake them off to put out the fire!

10- Firefighters! This parachute game is a twist on our shark game. To play, everyone put their toes under the parachute. One "firefighter" started out by going under the parachute. If he tickled someone's toes, they turned into a firefighter too! Once everyone was under the parachute, we played again. 

11- Walk Around by Nancy Kopman. We walk around holding onto the parachute and doing the suggested actions in this song:



12- Goodbye Song.



Happy Educating,
Carla


Have you seen HEEP? It is a preschool homeschool curriculum! Learn more here!




Never miss another post again!  Sign up for our weekly updates newsletter and get links to all our posts once a week in your inbox!  Sign up here!!




Read More