My little preschooler is such a charming delight. He smiles with his whole face: a toothy grin, lifted eyebrows that look so hopeful, and the most adorable little dimple in his cheek. He can be irresistible.
But when it is school time and I need to focus on the other kids, he likes to sneak around and find as much trouble as he can. Or, as often as that, he runs around our schoolroom (a.k.a. the kitchen) yelling war cries and begging for food (you’d think I never feed him). So, I must arm myself with a plan of attack. I have activities prepared for Z-urchin to do while we get some school done. It works pretty well. Although, as in today’s example, sometimes it backfires and my older kids really wish they were preschoolers too.
So, Trick #3- New Toy(s). And these toys only come out at school time. They are school for the preschooler. This works really well as kids are usually enthralled with a new toy (even it is only for a brief time) and it lets the preschooler know that he is special, even if Mom is paying attention to the older kids right now.
We purchased two new toys for Z-urchin for this school year.
First: Ace, The Talking Dog and Hot Dots, Jr. The talking dog pen walks preschoolers through little lessons on flashcards. My older kids love playing with this. I had a hard time completing school the first day I broke this out because they just wanted to watch Z using it and then take turns themselves.
Conclusion: Z-urchin likes the idea (he loves the lights and the sounds of the dog pen), but quickly grows bored with the activity as a whole. I think he is a little too young for this. We might take this out from time to time, but mostly reserve this one for later on in the year.
The second brand new toy I bought for Z-urchin this school year was the Sorting Pie. It is so bright and colorful and fun, I love it. I want to stop teaching and play with it. It is quite clever as well, with so many ways you can sort the fruit- by type, color, texture, or shape.
Conclusion: Z-urchin really enjoys playing with the pie (though it does not occupy him as long as the stamping does). He is really, really good at dumping all of the fruit out and onto the floor. He is not quite as good at putting it all back again. However, this is definitely one we’ll be using regularly.