This week’s tot school unit is all about cities and home. Most specifically it is about the specific city or town where you live. Beyond just studying our own city, we also explored what “home” means and where animals live and other people in our family call home. This unit meant getting out and about in the beautiful changing weather to explore this place we call home.
Please note, that supplies used for this learning theme are linked to amazon. If you graciously choose to buy supplies through any of my links, I would like to thank you for supporting my family through your purchases!
This week was again a continuation of the week before. Now that we have covered both transportation and buildings, we can talk about cities and what makes up a city! This week was heavy on field trips because why not get out and about exploring rather than stay at home? The best form of learning is through experience so I urge you to explore your own city this week!
Supplies and Books for Learning About Cities and Homes
Toys & Busy Bags
Whether you have a book, a game, or a homemade activity, a “Where Do I Live?” game is a fun way to explore the names of animals and their homes. It’s also a fun association game for small children.
We used some States & Capitals Pocket Flash Cards in busy bags to explore where relatives live. There would only be the flashcard in the bag for a state that a relative lived or a place that was important to our family. Then at home we have a large floor map of the US and we could point out where each state was and in relation to where we live.
There are two different books I would recommend called “My Street”. The first is a young geography book and the second is an old Carousel book that is the adventures of a boy and what he sees on his street (like a clothesline). After reading it, it would be fun to identify some of the same things in your neighborhood and then make your own story.
Kid O Wooden Books like Forest Friends and Animal Houses are great for teaching homes. They are also a wonderful book for the very young as there are no woods, but there are beautiful pictures. They are also made from sustainable resources so I like them and they are small enough to fit into a busy bag easily.
To teach children about not only where animals live but how they build their own houses, Animal Builders is a great book. It’s easy for toddlers and preschoolers, but still extremely informative. Three other books about animal home are Do Animals Live in Plants?, Silly Old Possum, and The Old Oak Tree. All are easy to read and great for both toddlers and early readers.
For a book with a nice extension activity, look into Me on the Map . It zooms in from the earth, US, state, city, etc. to give kids a broader view of where they live.
Sign of the week:
Bible verse of the week: Matthew 5:14-16 “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden…”
- Talk a walk through your neighborhood or a historic neighborhood in your city
- Bake cookies for a neighbor
- Have lunch or a snack with cheese and crackers, but build a city out of the food.
- Play at a favorite park
- Have lunch in a building downtown or on main street
- Visit Landmarks in your city
- In Oklahoma City:
- Sky Bridge
- Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial
- State Capitol
- Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum
- Museum of Osteology
- Science Museum
- Botanical Gardens
- In Oklahoma City:
Wednesday: Animal Homes
- Go on a picnic in your yard or local park picking out the animals that you see and identifying their homes.
- Build or paint a house for your pet (or the birds if no pet)
Thursday: Homes of Relatives
- Draw a map indicating where each relative lives
- Write letters to relatives (For older kids, discuss the idea of zip codes)
- Have your relatives send you packages throughout the week of a few different things that are typical of where they live (like a bottle of sand if near the beach, a post card, etc.)
Friday: Home of friends
- Skype with a friend far away.
- Set up a play date with a friend in the next city
- All cities have events and festivals throughout the year. Find a great event to attend as a family.
- InOKC on a regular basis
- Paseo 1st Friday
- Plaza District 2nd Friday
- InOKC on a regular basis
For more on OKC, check this post I have done in collaboration with Piri-Piri Lexicon on showcasing neighborhoods from around the world. Explore some of these neighborhoods as a part of this unit. There are GREAT pictures from several bloggers from around the world!
Check out the other themes we have completed and download the calendar & planner to start today.
Kara is an author and advocate for positive, grace-filled parenting. She is homeschooler to her 4 children living in Boston, MA and believes in creative educational approaches to help kids dive deeper into a rich learning experience. She has her degree in Secondary Education & Adolescent Childhood Development and is passionate about connecting with and helping other parents on their journey to raise awesome kids!