Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Preschool-made Butter

This week our theme is "Old MacDonald's Farm". We will be learning about all sorts of different farm animals and what farmers do too. We just had a fun field trip on Friday to American West Heritage Center and got to visit all the new baby farm animals there. We held them and learned all about them - we had a blast. So we are following up with a fun week of what we have already learned on a real farm.
Can you guess that today we made our own butter! Today our emphasis was cows.....so milk and things that come from milk are an obvious choice!!
We put this activity in our messy table and the kids SHOOK and SHOOK and SHOOK!! I just put the Heavy Whipping Cream into little containers - baby food jars work nice or little tupperware containers. We had on some fun dancing music to make this a little more enjoyable at choice time.
Soon enough our Cream was becoming thicker and thicker. The kids kept asking, "Miss Chelsea, check mine, check mine! Is it butter yet?" When they are asking 5 seconds apart, the answer from the teacher will be, "Not yet, keep shaking - it will be soon".
As you are shaking, the cream will get very thick and hard to shake for a minute, then all of a sudden, the milk and cream will seperate and you will hear water sloshing around. When the kids heard this, they all thought our butter was ruined. But actually, it has just worked!!
After many tired little hands, and one tired teacher who actually had to do most of the shaking at the end ;) - we had BUTTER!! And some excited little preschoolers!!
So you'll want to pour that liquid out and then your butter will be ready! We spread ours on bread today for our snack, but you can spread it on Saltine crackers or other things. The kids LOVE IT!

Drippy, shiny milk pictures

Since we are learning about cows today (within our "Old MacDonald's Farm" unit).....we had our activities based around "Milk". So at our art table we painted with drippy shiny milk!!
Basically, this is sweetened condensed milk with food coloring. I mixed three different bowls with red, blue, and yellow food coloring.
Once they are done painting, we hung them on the wall to watch them slowly drip! The kids thoroughly enjoyed this......."Wow, mine has dripped all the way to the bottom!" "My blue is dripping", "My yellow is beating my blue". I also tried to begin conversation about the mixing of the primary colors - what new colors are appearing?
Some kids enjoyed mixing them all at once for a beautiful brown color. Then folding their paper in half for some symmetry. Awesome! We had a fun painting day today!

Mama Cow Song

This song goes to the tune of "Mary had a Little Lamb". The kids loved it!
Mary had a Mama Cow, Mama Cow, Mama Cow
Mary had a Mama Cow, it's milk was white as snow.
Everywhere that Mary went, Mary went, Mary went.
Everywhere that Mary went, she drank the milk you know.
She took the milk to school one day, school one day, school one day.
She took the milk to school one day, and drank it all day long.
The milk helped Mary laugh and play, laugh and play, laugh and play.
The milk helped Mary laugh and play, because her bones were strong.
We did little actions with the song that we just made up ourselves.
Have fun singing!!