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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Circus by Lois Ehlert



Gathering Activity:  Free Art with Shapes
We gave each of the children their own black canvases (card stock) and fun foam shapes.  We did this BEFORE we introduced the book, so that they could create their own original designs.   We did this as a fun introduction to Ehlert's illustrations in the book Circus.  Her designs consist of colorful shapes forming circus scenes on a black background.





Circle Time:  Circus by Lois Ehlert
 The children and their mommies gathered on a colorful parachute for our circle time today.   The circus came to our town this past week, so it was the perfect time to share the book Circus by Lois Ehlert.    This is a wonderful introduction to the circus for children.  The pictures and text are simple, bright, and bold.  The story is told from the Ringmaster's point of view.  He invites everyone to join him at the circus and then introduces each act.  The children thought the flying zucchinis were a funny twist.  There are also some great vocabulary words.  The children were asking lots of questions.  I love books that spark their curiosity!  






We sang Walking Through the Circus and The Clowns in the Circus. 

Walking Through the Circus 
(Sung To: "I've Been Working On the Railroad")
I am walking through the circus (walk in place)
Happy as can be (smile real big)
I am walking through the circus (walk in place)
Just to see, what I can see (make binoculars with hands)
I can see the clown laughing (ha, ha, ha)
I can see the elephant, too (make trunk motion)
I can see the lion sleeping (yawn)
Look out (make binoculars with hands)... because he sees you too


The Clowns In The Circus (Sung to The Wheels On The Bus)
The clowns in the circus make us go ha ha ha
ha ha ha
ha ha ha
The clowns in the circus make us go ha ha ha
All day long!
The lions in the circus go grrrr grrrr grrrrrr
grrrr grrrr grrrrrr
grrrr grrrr grrrrrr
The lions in the circus go grrrr grrrr grrrrrr
All day long!
The elephants in the circus go errrrrrr eerrrrrrrr eerrrrrr
errrrrrr eerrrrrrrr eerrrrrr
errrrrrr eerrrrrrrr eerrrrrr
The elephants in the circus go errrrrrr eerrrrrrrr eerrrrrr
All day long!
The hot dog man at the circus yells red hots here!
red hots here!
red hots here!
The hot dog man at the circus yells red hots here!
All day long.

Art: Circus Tent Balloon Painting

 
Materials Needed: Circus Tent cut-outs on poster board, small balloons, washable paint 

Directions: Allow the children to paint the circus tent by dipping their balloons and using them as a paintbrush.  


Snack: Popcorn, Peanuts, and Animal Crackers
How could we have done anything else on circus day?   The children really enjoyed shelling their own peanuts.  It was great fine motor practice, as well as a lot of fun! 




Playtime: Circus Games


1-Jumping Through the Hoop 
The children took SEVERAL turns pretending to be lions and jumping through the hoop. 






2-Walking the Tight Rope
We drew a tight rope on the ground with sidewalk chalk and allowed the children to hold an umbrella as they practiced balancing on the line. 






3-Under the Big Top : Parachute Play
This group of little ones LOVE parachute play.  We pretended to be under the big top.  There was just enough breeze to make this exceptionally fun!







4-Feed the Elephant  
This was everyone's favorite activity of the day (mommies included).  One of the Mommies, made this adorable cardboard elephant with a gray sock trunk.  (Thank you, Jen).  The children played several games with this new friend.  



First, we tried to throw peanuts in his mouth.

Then we placed them in the elephant's trunk and the elephant placed them in his mouth.



Well then that silly elephant decided he wanted to play with the nice children who fed him, and started to play tag!  So many giggles! 



Of course each of the children wanted to have a chance to be the elephant, too!  




If you are still looking for more fun circus and wild animal ideas, check out my blogs from other fun circus days with other groups, here and here and here.   We dressed up as clowns, face painted, and there are some other snack ideas.

3 comments:

Lots of Fun with My FaMiLy

I just wanted to tell you that I have received a Versatile Blogger Award and have passed it along to you & your lovely spot here ;)


http://lotsoffunwithmyfamily.blogspot.com/2011/02/big-thanks-to-my-rays-of-sunshine-for.html

Polly @ Helping Little Hands

We have read and loved a ton of Lois Ehlert books...but we haven't checked this one out yet. Now we need to!

Victoria ObSEUSSed

Saw a tweet about your post on Imagination Soup. Glad I found you. This is such a fun idea. We did a small preK coop but I love the idea of the book club. There are so many fun ideas and activities you put together for the kids. Splitting up the responsibilities between parents helps a ton. I'm now following you. Stop by http://www.obSEUSSed.com/ where I blog about children's books, kid crafts and activities.

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