Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Before FIAR: Caps for Sale Co-op

For our last co-op of the year, we chose the book Caps for Sale.  I love this book and it has long been one of my favorites to use with groups of children.  This time was no exception!
We started out with a devotion.  And what a clever way to teach the children the Bible verse.  There is a cute little monkey there with an open mouth.  

 The children were given bananas to feed the monkey.

 Each banana had a different word from the verse.
 As the verse was said, the children looked for the word and then fed the banana to the monkey.
 They LOVED doing this!
 This is an activity that could be done over and over again.  I think we will use it in our upcoming studies in some way for Eliana's sight words.
 Creative and engaging way to teach the devotion to the children!

 Next, we read the story.

 After we read, it was time to act it out!  I had some eager little monkeys too!

 First, the peddler was fitted with his hats.
 And while he was taking a nap, the monkeys took his caps!

 The peddler fussed at the monkeys.
 He shook his fingers and stamped his feet.
 The monkeys just shook their fingers and stamped their feet back at him.
 And he was finally so frustrated, that he threw down his cap!
 To which the monkeys did the same.
 And then we started over with a new peddler.
 Balancing the caps is tricky business.
 A picture of me with my little monkey.  I loved that one of my friends grabbed my camera and took a lot of photos!

 This was so much fun and the children (and moms) just laughed and laughed.
 Next we played a game to learn more about coins.  You can find this printable here (at Homeschool Creations) as well as other fun printables to go with this book.
 I premade a die for each child along with a grid sheet.  Each face of the die had a different coin on it.  I also color coded each coin to make the grid sheet.  (Ex. If the penny was yellow on the die, it was also yellow on the grid sheet.)

 The children then took turns rolling the die and then marking what they rolled on the grid sheet.
 It was a fun way to learn to identify coins.
 And rolling a die is always a hit.

 It was interesting to see that some coins did come up more often than others.
 And to my great delight, Eliana participated in EVERYTHING at this co-op!
  It was definitely her best one of the year!
 This was very encouraging to me as sometimes it has been such a struggle to keep her involved in what the group was doing.  Maybe we have turned a corner?

 Now it was time for snacks.  A monkey snack of course!  We started with a rice cake and then spread sunflower butter on it.  (We have one with a nut allergy.)

 Raisins for the eyes and nose.  Licorice (red twizzlers) for the mouth.
 Banana chunks for the ears.
 And then you have a monkey!  The combination tasted quite good too!

The children took turns making their own monkey snacks.

 Can you see that Eliana even brought her friend "George" to co-op?  Perfect time for him to attend.
 For an art activity, the colored trees.

 And then stamped their fingerprints to make monkeys in the trees.

 Look at them all working so hard!
 Even Eliana!  Craft was the area in which I think she participated the least.  Not sure why she didn't seem to want to do this in a group setting.  But on this day - she was participating in all of it.  :-)
 Some of the children added faces and details to their stamped monkey bodies.  Really cute!

 I wish I had gotten a closer picture of the trees.  They were really cute.

 This has been such a fun year with sweet friends!  I'm thankful that we had this time together!  I'm also really thankful to have ended on such a positive note with Eliana.  There were times when I wondered why I went to the effort when she would not join in.   Maybe it just needed time and I'm glad that we had the time for her!

We aren't sure what we will be doing next year.  I'll be sure to post though when we figure it out.