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Tot-school | Week 10 | Letter JNovember 27, 2016


This week’s tot-school
…was Joyful!

Oh if i could repeat this week I would do so willingly, it was fabulous. This week routine returned to the household and totschool thrived. The key concepts of juice and jumper were readily accepted and explored, the accompanying ideas of jam and jumping went down really well too. Again, the week ended with unused ideas but having covered so much there was no sadness in filing them away. If anything, the only regret I have this week is that we didn’t get to do the large motor activities, taping letters on the ground to jump in and out of would have been great.

This is our 10th week of tot-school and next week (K) will be our last letter before breaking for Christmas activities. It was fantastic then get back to the full 5 days, even if one came just before our evening bath time. I’ve noticed more and more Adam is trying to write the letters when he first sees them, drawing a wobbly line inside the wide letters lines – while we always praise him for this it’s for his pen control. He prefers to start at the bottom of the letter and work up, I’m no expert but I’ve decided not to correct this, after all he’s only 25 months old! (if there is any expert reading who feels this needs correcting do let me know)

The pack I’ve made is available for download at the end of the post.

This weeks read more questions:

The jumper was clearly the favoured image with the craft being the favourite activity. I cut the pieces from craft-foam and perhaps it was the vibrant colours or the texture that had Adam assembling that jumper so many times!

The paint stampers. We literally managed 4 dots before quitting. while i may use these for Christmas decorations I’m happy to shelve them to the new year – the dot pages are much better received with buttons than paint.

Again the font I’ve chosen to use was a hindrance this week. for some reason it’s lowercase ‘j’ did not curl at the base. After making up a custom letter I realised that I prefer the uppercase ‘J’ with ‘a hat’ because I think it’s easier to distinguish so another custom letter came through. Apologies to those of you who would prefer the other.


Between preschool and flashcards…November 26, 2016


We visited friends the other week and saw their flashcard book. They were involved flashcards, by which I mean they posed questions about position, size, order and other relative concepts as well as absolutes like colours. Another parent learnt I was doing tot-school and quizzed her nursery about it: Was it something she should be doing? Was her child missing out? She was assured it was totally unnecessary. I totally agreed. When I started out on our tot-school journey I downloaded the pre-made packs from a few websites, I find myself using painfully little of the activities.

Tot-school for us is the middle ground.

We chose tot-school
At times it’s a maze to resource
It’s not flashcards, neither those of straight memorisation nor involved concepts.
It’s not a preschool lite
It’s not a journey on the route to reading and writing
It’s not parent directed play
Equally it’s not nothing.

Tot-school | Week 9 | Letter INovember 20, 2016


This week’s tot-school
…was handicapped!

Many alphabetical letters have too many basic words to choose from, not so with the letter I. It’s a tough week to find resources for and very hard to find things that a toddler will recognise that use the phonetic ‘ih’ sound and not the ‘aye’ sound. I’m hoping that the second time round we can concentrate more on the igloo and ink that are both phonetic and lend themselves to crafts, though this time I stuck with the already vaguely familiar ice related objects and the colour indigo in our unplanned play and songs.

Tot-school was hindered this week by much activity. Daddy needed to travel for work and a family funeral meaning that almost every day it was a mummy and Adam show. Knowing I’d struggle with this I overcompensated and invited people over, our nap times went awry and the resulting short tot-school sessions, when they happened, achieved little. In all honestly if it had been another letter I’d probably repeat this week but I’ve decided to plow onward. Sadly I had untouched activities left at the weeks end, but perhaps some of them can bless someone else.

The pack I’ve made is available for download at the end of the post.

This weeks read more questions:

singing the rainy-bow Bing song. Adam has just learn to sing and the Bing version starts with purple then indigo! Mummy loved both the crafts as per usual and seeing Adam do some well controlled lines.

the puzzle flopped. I tried to cut it into 4 again but the image was too narrow and it turned out just too difficult.

you’ll notice quickly that the font I’ve chosen to use has an uppercase I without a ‘stand and hat’, for this reason I needed to create a special letter image for some pages. Changing font may have been easier but I struggled to find one I liked as much.