A is for Alligator: Tot School 21 Months

Where do you start when you decide to stay at home with your child but make sure your little one still gets all the advantages of a preschool environment... the answer is TOT SCHOOL!  My daughter is now 21 months and when big sister started 1st grade this year we decided it was time for her to officially begin Tot School at The Educators' Spin On It. 

Now here's the key question... where do you begin? 

For me the easiest was to focus on Letter Based Themes. Truthfully anything will work.  Tot School is just making sure you set aside time block during day to focus on learning new things with your child in all areas of development. We're linking our post with 1+1+1=1 .    

This week's Tot School: A is for Alligator!
Monday- Music
Five Little Monkeys
Alligator Chant
Alligator, Alligator

There are some fun alligator songs to learn with your child.  We printed out some Monkey to recreate the song Five Little Monkey.  Here's the monkey printable we used. I think we might make them more permanent and create these felt monkeys soon.  Here are two versions of the songs from Cullins ABC's and Mr. Mike.  Then we also sang the Alligator Alligator song and learned about body parts.  Jean Felden has an adorable Alligator Chant that we adapted to fit a 1 year old humor.  We pretended to let the alligator chomp the apples, ants and airplanes while we sand it.  Here's a printable version of it.  I wonder what else we can find for the alligator to eat?  

Tuesday- Science
We found some alligator books at the library that were nonfiction and looked at the pictures of real alligators.  We sorted some animal picture cards into two groups.  Alligators and not alligators.  

Wednesday- Math
Since we sang Five Little Monkeys a lot this week we worked on counting to five and counting backyards from five to zero.  She's starting to saw her numbers just a little bit as we count.  We also spent a lot of time using puzzle this week. It's something I have been wanting to do with her more so this was a perfect Tot School tasks to focus on. I was amazed at how quickly she was able to pick things out and find where they belonged. We had a jungle puzzle that she just loved finding the alligator first always to put into place. 

Thursday- Art
We created an alligator for art by reusing some materials around the house to create the reptile skin.  We reused bubble wrap and yogurt and fruit containers for the stamps.  We drew the alligator together look at her alligator toy that she tugged around all week long.  

Here's another cute alligator project I wanted to share with you.   

Friday-Field Trips
We are pretty lucky that we can visit our local musuem and a local walking trail to observe alligators.  So we took a little family field trip to observe the alligators in action this week.  

Everyday Langauge Arts
We shared our Letter A printable with our Tot Time group and decide it would be fun to paint the alligator and A at home.  While we were together we created the Letter A Alligator that you can see on the table below. 

 For your own free printable version, click here
Additional Resources we LOVE
Letter A Activities with Alligators from Totally Tots
Letter A Activities from Totally Tots
Alligator Cupcakes from Little Family Fun

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  1. Brilliant. I'm thinking of doing something like tot School with T when J is at preschool. I love the aligator skin printing :) that looks a LOT of fun

    1. Thanks! The alligator skin print were a lot of fun!

  2. My little one just turned 20 months. I am loving that you are ahead of me and gives me some ideas. Tot School can be overwhelming. Could I get you to check the first couple links? I am interested in the felt monkies but it takes me to an alligator page :) Thanks for posting all the great info though!!

    1. Thank you! Fixed it... thank you here's the link too http://homemadebyjill.blogspot.com/2011/07/happy-birthday-ruby.html

  3. I love how you organized each day into a certain theme! My son would have loved the Five Little Monkeys song when we did alligators a few weeks ago! The alligator skin painting looks like it was a lot of fun! I guess I need to order something so I can get some bubble wrap!

  4. Great photos! Love the first one especially - we don't get that perspective very often!

  5. My youngest "tot" is now 5yrs - and I don't remember doing *that* with him. Great job!!

  6. I started tot school with my 20 month old son last week (this week was week 2) and it has been a challenge to get his interest in the activities I had planned (super frustrating). Do you have any tips on how to get his attention/keep him interested? By the way- great idea to use bubble wrap for alligator skin!

  7. I love e idea of tot school! My twins are over two and they definitely need a bit more organised activities in their day.

    Thanks for linking to the Sunday showcase
    I have. Pinned this to our board.

  8. This is sooo fun! I especially love the alligator skin bubble wrap painting! Will have to try that with my kiddos.

  9. I like how you have a different subject you focus on each day...that is a great idea! And putting the bubble wrap on the yogurt containers to make it easy to stamp is brilliant! Thanks for sharing!


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