A trip around the world.

In this month we decided to take a trip “Around the World” with the kids. This had two main reasons. For one, we had several great book and craft ideas we wanted to use and we also wanted to give the children an opportunity to celebrate both their differences and similarities.

We started out the month with the book “Jesus Loves the Little Children” which showed us that Jesus loves children no matter where they live or what their lives are like. One of our songs for the month was also the song “Jesus Loves the Little Children.” Our corresponding craft was similar to the one in the Candostreet example found here . However, instead of glueing the world with the text in the middle, we simply printed out a world which the kids could color and glued it onto a piece of cardboard. The kids especially had fun tracing their hands on the different colored paper.

The book for the second week combined travel and counting. “Granny Went to Market” is a fun book about a grandmother who travels the world to gather presents for her granddaughter whom we don’t meet until the end of the book. As this week fell into the German celebration of “Karneval” or “Fasching” and coincidently Granny bought some masks on her trip to Mexico (in the book of course) we decided masks would be a great craft for this week. We simply cut eye holes into paper plates and put out crayons, markers, yarn, sequins, colored paper, and anything else we could find that would liven up the masks and let the kids go crazy. We certainly had some very very interesting results. They may or may not have been fueled by the sugar high resulting from traditional “Pfannkuchen” (a kind of jelly filled donut) that were plentiful at this weeks playgroup.

I think “Around the World Piggy Wiggy” might have been the most popular book this month. I’m not sure if it was because Joel was reading it or if it was because of all the exciting pages the folded out and bright colors. Either way, it introduced the kids some of the famous sites in the world.

And what is something that everyone needs when they travel, even Piggy Wiggy? That´s right, a suitcase!

For this weeks craft I was inspired by a paper suitcase craft on DLTK. However, we simply made our suitcases out of a piece of brown construction paper which we folded in half. We pre-cut proportionally sized handles which the kids could glue on as well as a paper “luggage tag” for their names. For the inside of the suitcase I compiled a sheet with various clothing items, toys, and a toothbrush (of course) which the kids could color, cut out, and glue into the inside of their suitcases. I am so thankful that there are so many ideas and resources for crafts on the internet. Otherwise we might just be making the same things every week.

This weeks book might have been my favorite. In “Whoever You Are” we learned that everybody laughs and everybody cries regardless of where or how you do it. In the spirit of celebrating our common humanity, I decided to go with a mirror craft and a quote from the book on the back. We modeled it after the example that Kaboose made on this website but altered it to fit our theme. We were unable to find the foam frames and therefore used blank photo frame cards. We also used popsicle sticks instead of the wooden dowel and decorated ours with crayons and foam stickers instead of jewels (the princess theme is so two months ago 🙂 ). If I have totally confused you, perhaps the photo  will help to better explain what I am trying to say.

In the fifth and last week of this month we explored “Homes Around the World.” From houses on stilts,to houses built with clay, to houses that are built out of old shipping containers or made to look like a space ship, we each have a different place we call home. The house template on Kidsturncentral provided us with a base to color, decorate, fold, and glue together our own little houses. We also cut out circles of cardboard to glue the houses on as well as some dried grass to put on the roof. Although the cutting and folding was a bit tedious for some of the children, they really enjoyed decorating them and the little boys were especially excited to put their lego figures in them when the got home.

That concludes our trip “Around the World.” We hope you will join us next month as our theme is “April Showers bring… EASTER!”

Individually, we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean.”                  Ryunosuke Satoro

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