Thursday, February 4, 2016

J is for Jam

Today it was "Introduction to Letter J" day for Little Miss and I.  I started with our Letter J letter card:

As I held up this card showing our happy little Glimmercat, jumping rope, I began our Letter J "Story" which is roughly this:   "Glimmercat was walking through the forest one day when she found this little jump-rope.  Well, you know what you do with a jump-rope..."

(Here, I stand up and pantomime finding a jump-rope.  I pick it up and pretend to jump with it, and the only sound I make as I jump is "Juh!" every time I jump.  Little Miss is smiling and because I am doing this unique and out of the ordinary thing for Mommy to be doing, I have her complete attention. Then, I set the pretend rope down and sit down again.)

"The word 'Jump rope' begins with the letter J.  When Glimmercat jumped, the rope went, "juh, juh, juh".  This is to help us remember that J says 'juh'."  

Next, out comes the Letter J Path of Motion coloring sheet.  Little Miss pours over her coloring, and follows the lines of the J. 

 I notice that she is finally beginning to vary her colors on one coloring page.  Usually, she will stick with one color and use it to color the whole page.  I find it interesting to note these little changes. 

As she is coloring, I pull out the Matching Game, which I will often use to go over the J words we will use during our letter J week. 

Usually, Little Miss cuts these out.  This time I did.  Her scissors need to be replaced (they're sticking) and I don't want cutting to become a frustration when she has gotten so skilled at it. 

Now, I bring out the jam.  I can't stress enough how wonderful it is to include snacks that begin with the letter you are covering.  When children experience the letter (and what better experience is there when you are 3 and 4, then eating?), they will remember like nothing else.

We talked about how sometimes "Jam" is called "Jelly", like in peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  And we looked again at the picture of "Jam" in the matching game.  And then we snacked.  Because that is the best.

A really wonderful follow-up to snacking on Jam is to read "Bread and Jam for Francis" by Russell Hoban.  This book has been around for ages (I had it when I was a child!), but its cover has received an upgrade here:

For children who are sometimes picky eaters, this story is fascinating.   Francis is allowed to eat her favorite food (bread and jam) until...well, I'll just let you watch it being read aloud here on YouTube:

Francis even does some jump-roping in the story (be sure to point that out!) so this story is a great introduction to Letter J day. 

For all the Letter of the Week activities seen in this blog, you can purchase our Letter of the Week packet for J here at our store:

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