Living Room Camping

It’s already July! I cannot believe it! Even though we don’t keep a traditional school year, we have still acknowledged that it is very much summer, and it’s flying by crazy fast!

We have found ourselves almost two weeks into this new month, and are just now breaking open our July Mother Goose Time box, Camping! We’ve been really looking forward to it, as my kids are dying to go ‘real’ camping.. My husband was able to go with a couple friends a few months back, and since then, they have been on us to go themselves. We even went as far as to purchase a tent, but had yet to take it out of the wrapping until this past week!

What better opportunity than a few holiday days off work for the hubs to break out the tent and have a practice run in our living room!





All in all, it was a great success (especially considering there were no bugs, minimal prepping, and I got to crash on the nearby loveseat).

So as I said, it was a great way to kick off the new theme!

With Peter being newly four, and already getting so many opportunities to learn alongside his older sister, I don’t feel pressured to make sure we are covering all the activities each month. I’m really just allowing our interests and natural flow to dictate our content right now, and I love it. I love that Mother Goose Time has already done so much of the work for me, so that I can just pick and choose what I feel like is a good fit for us right now. It so often feels more like playing than anything else, and yet they are learning so much! I get to enjoy my little buddy and be able to observe when he is turning a corner developmentally, just like I did this week!

Since I knew we wouldn’t have an opportunity to get to all the fun-filled activities for all 20 of our Daily Discovery Bags this month, I chose to highlight a few activities I thought Peter would really enjoy from Day 1. One of them was the journal activity for the letter “B.”



For one that has never been much into writing, I saw him take a very meticulous approach to tracing his “B’s” during the journal backpack activity. He also used the same precision to cut out his “B” card to create the flap for the backpack, as well as then proceeded in usual form in coloring in the entire image. He is not a scribbler. In fact, when his older sister even attempts to call one of his drawings as such, he takes great offense and we have to work through some conflict resolution before we can continue on. He takes a lot of pride in his work already, so it’s really neat to see this continue to develop and his personality come out more and more.







I loved being able to witness this new change in his approach to writing, and honestly it was a relief as I was really anticipating quite the battle with him this year. So once again I am reminded to just relax and allow my kids to develop at the pace that comes naturally to them, continually exposing them to opportunities to engage differently with each topic. Peter would definitely still prefer letter manipulatives to actually writing, but he’s not as resistant as in the past, and I will take that as a major win!

And of course, like most days, we start out with some imaginative play with our math manipulatives. We collected these a few years ago when my daughter was 4, but they continue to be usual go-tos when it comes to designing the latest boat or animal.

This latest creation was entitled “The Boat of Dreams” by Natalie Harwood.


As an official Mother Goose Time Blog Ambassador,
I receive curriculum in exchange for posting about our honest and authentic experiences with the curriculum.
Click here for more information on Mother Goose Time.

Inside the Box: A Peek Into Our Preschool Curriculum, Part 3

Wrapping up my series on our new preschool curriculum, Mother Goose Time, I am going to focus on the Daily Discovery Bags!
If you missed my previous three posts, feel free to check here (1), (2), and (3).

I don’t know why, but I get so giddy opening up these bags. I love, love, love that the designers and writers of this curriculum are so meticulous, thinking right down to the details of needed cotton balls and pipe cleaners for different activities. All I need on hand most days that isn’t included are the usual suspects: scissors, tape, glue, markers, etc..

Below is all that was included in Day 1’s Daily Discovery Bag. (So this is just 1 of 20 bags that we will get to explore this month! So fitting that this month’s theme includes treasure hunting! Even the mamas/teachers get one of their own!)




Here is the daily sheet to visually represent Day 1’s topic, Island, and a conversation starter on the bottom.

We have our name tags that will help Peter (4 yrs) start to learn how to write his name, as well as continue to give Natalie (7yrs) consistent practice on spacing and handwriting.


This is a new, great improvement from the last time we experienced Mother Goose time. Before, we would have received a piece of coverstock, similiar to the one below, but formatted in such a way that we could cut and fold it into a cube. While a cute idea, it was not very durable and needless to say, usually didn’t survive the month. Now they have designed and provided this permanent cube that has little sleeves on each side, so that you can cut out these square cards and insert them. So for day 1, we obviously were creating a die for one of the activities. (Spoiler: in other days, we have different inserts to reuse the cube for other activities. Such a clever idea!!)



We also received a nice coverstock card for the number 20. Each month, depending on the number and focus, we will receive others to help build a reference collection.


Next was our first craft activities: an eye patch and a spyglass!

As you can see below, they provided all the needed materials, minus some tape to secure the spyglass once decorated.

(Peter, aka “little prince”, age 4)

(Natalie, aka “the Sweetness”, age 7)


Each month we also receive a coloring book that goes along with the theme. It’s so visually appealing that my kids usually ask to continue on with it after we are done with the first day’s activities.


I love that they decided to highlight the letters inside the words, not just beginning sounds. This is a perfect example of why Mother Goose Time has been such a good fit for me and my two kids. This one book alone helps me also introduce short and long vowel sound concepts to Peter, who already has his letter sounds down, but we haven’t really started narrowing in on isolated vowel sounds yet. However, with my almost second grader, this is a great review and practice for her in phonics and writing, not to mention she loves coloring as well. So both kids, although currently almost 3 years apart, can sit side by side and both glean a lot from this curriculum. It’s been a great program for our summer before Natalie starts second grade.

Seriously, so cute!

And each month there is a family newsletter included. While this is great resource for teachers in public and private school environments to send home to the parents of their students, this has been really handy for our family as homeschoolers because it helps my husband to see an overview of all that we’ll be covering at home while he is away at work. We desire to stay in close communication about the kids’ activities, so this is a great tool for my husband to be able to peruse without me having to organize information before we really get into the month’s activities.


Here is a glimpse of Day 1’s activities found in the Teacher’s Guide that I referenced in Part 1 of this blog series.


One of the activities asked the children to draw their own picture of an island, whether based on the daily topic sheet provided or other books we had collected for the day. While Peter was not interested in this activity personally, my daughter embraced it wholeheartedly, pulling out our art bin in search from various materials to add texture and variety to her picture. As a mom and teacher, it is SO fun to watch the differences in their personalities and interest levels, and often I find that one’s passions inspires the other.



And last, but definitely not least, are some pictures of my kids enjoying the math manipulatives provided in this month’s box. Another activity from Day 1 suggested we play with water, seeing the foam alphabet letters float and exploring how different objects interact with the water. The kids loved it and continued to play for quite some time after the day’s lessons were over.


My daughter discovered that the wet foam letters stuck to the side of our bins, and so this started an impromptu spelling challenge to see what all she could spell.


And Peter decided to build a rocket ship after seeing how the plastic manipulatives floated, as well as how the water reflected their color onto the bottom of the bin.




Overall, we are off to a great start with Mother Goose Time and look forward to diving into July’s theme, Camping!




As an official Mother Goose Time Blog Ambassador,
I receive curriculum in exchange for posting about our honest and authentic experiences with the curriculum.
Click here for more information on Mother Goose Time.

Inside the Box: A Peek Into Our Preschool Curriculum, Part 2

Hey there! So this is the third post in the series on our new Preschool curriculum, Mother Goose Time. We have LOVED our time with this curriculum in the past (we used it for about 6 months when my daughter was 5 years old) and we are excited to be using it again our second time around with our little man. You can catch the previous posts about our initial box day here and then getting into a little bit more detail on the resources included in the Teacher Tool Bag here.

This week I will be sharing about the Circle Time materials (which I will receive monthly) and the Getting Started Packet (one time only packet) that I received with my starter kit (the first box of the subscription). The Getting Started Booklet that is a GREAT step-by-step guide on how to approach all the resources that were given in the box. I probably should have started this series with this, but oh well. We’ll get to it now.

Here is the beautiful array of materials that I pulled out of the Getting Started Packet, that includes some of the staple Circle Time materials to get my board started.

We have the beautiful map that I add to the outside of the tri-fold board that I use to create my Circle Time boards. It’s an awesome tool that we reference quite a bit. I love how colorful it is!


Here are some of the cute graphics that are included to cover the different elements of the Circle Time board (weather corner with Mother Goose Time), as well as the Alphabet Grass that I have running along the bottom of my board currently. You can also see in the first image the Months of the Year cards that are used to label each month’s calendar that is included in the monthly Circle Time bag.

Now let’s just into the Getting Started booklet! This is such an awesome resource for teachers & parents to know the ins and outs of the program. You can tell by the detail involved not only in the booklet but all the materials provided that the writers and creators really have a heart for learning and equipping others to educate well.

I guess I could have just shared this image and forgone the series, huh? Like I said, they are super helpful and want to make sure that you not only have the tools you need to succeed, but to make sure you know how to wield the tools effectively.

This was super helpful for me to get an idea of what my board could look like, and to then have some creative freedom to design our own.

Like I mentioned, they are so thorough to make sure you understand how to use the resources that they provide.

I will go into more detail about the Daily Discovery Bags next week, but here is a sneak peek on what you will receive on any given month with Mother Goose Time.

This helps take away the mystery of the lesson planning and facilitating so that you can get about the business of teaching and enjoying those kiddos. This is one of my favorite aspects of MGT!

This is a holistic approach to education, recognizing that each child has so many unique facets and that there is more to learning than just cognitive development. Mother Goose Time provides different elements of learning to help each child thrive not only cognitively, but physically and socially as well.

And as a homeschooling mama, this is also another thing I LOVE about Mother Goose Time. There is an instant sense of community and a support system available to help you give your kids what they need. There are training videos available online, as well as others you can contact with questions, so that you don’t feel like you have to do this on your own.

Next is the Circle Time Bag!

(Please excuse the awful picture)
You can see here (kind of) the super cute theme poster that came with June’s Alphabet Island box, as well as the calendar below, the day pieces (that also represent the pattern of the month), the circle time song cards with lyrics, and the example picture of a Circle Time Board.

The Circle Time songs CD is also included, with songs like the Days of the Week, Months of the Year, Little Helper, and some other well-known nursery rhymes.

And of course I have to include my little man exploring the calendar pieces and pattern play.

I love that the pieces are so visually appealing that he wants to interact with them and it brings about organic opportunities for him to learn as he plays.

Next week, Discovery Daily Bags!

As an official Mother Goose Time Blog Ambassador,
I receive curriculum in exchange for posting about my honest and authentic experiences with the curriculum.
Click here for more information on Mother Goose Time.