(I know, I'm a blog slacker! ha!)
Let me just say, this book was awesome!
Especially when you have little girls who love animals.
And a Mama who loves Europe and would really, REALLY like to go to Venice someday.
(Hint, hint, hubby...)
What happens in the story?
Piper: Papa Piccolo is a tomcat. He finds two kittens. He sings to them and they go fast to sleep. He goes to see Sophia and asks if she can keep them. She says no. The kittens make a big mess. They get thrown out on a boat. Piccolo waited and waited for them to come back. When they do, he is so happy to see them again! He teaches them to eat spaghetti and how to get home.
What was your favorite part of the story?
Piper: My favorite part is 'signora' because I like that name!
Taitum: When the kittens weren't coming home and Piccolo was lonely.
To start, we turned on some Italian music to get us in the mood.
This was the girls favorite...
With this playing in the background, we set to constructing Venice.
We used blocks to construct the buildings in our waterplay box and used plastic boats for the gondolas that carried various figurines around the block!
We learned where Italy is found on the map and some European words that we came across in the story.
(We had great fun with this! One day I even heard Piper exclaim "Caro mio!" when she walked into her very messy room! haha!)
We enjoyed an Italian meal of spaghetti and meatballs for supper one evening!
We talked about what makes a good father and listed what Papa Piccolo taught his kittens.
The girls answered questions about their own Dad and drew a picture to surprise him with at the end of the day.
They learned a few new vocabulary words, too!
In art, we completed a color wheel and learned about primary and secondary colors.
We also experimented with pastels and watercolors by drawing a scene of Venice with pastels, filling in the windows yellow and painting over the picture with blue and black watercolors, creating a nighttime effect!
This was a bit technical for Taitum so her and I worked on this together.
Piper, on the other hand, was very intent on her artwork.
She enjoyed this so much that later in the afternoon she asked if she could do it again and when on to create another beautiful nighttime scene of Venice!
Halloween landed in the middle of the week so we simply incorporated cats into our Halloween fun!
We baked cookies for our visit to the seniors' home and the kids got a hoot out of the googly eyes on the cat cookies!
The girls carved...
Until they had made the cutest little kitty jack-o-lanterns!
In language arts, we talked about the lullaby Papa Piccolo sings to the kittens to help them fall to sleep.
Piper and Taitum then came up with some lullabies they thought would be appropriate for various animals.
I wrote it on the board as they came up with ideas so we could sing the whole lullaby together at the end!
This was a lot of fun and caused many giggles!
Here are a couple videos of the girls singing their lullabies.
The first is Piper working on a lullaby for frogs.
Taitum's is really hard to understand but I thought it was so cute as she was quite sure of what she was singing about! :)
We took some time to act out some of the action words found in the story.
This one is 'curled up'.
And I think this one was ashamed!
The girls completed many activities from 1+1+1=1's Cat Preschool Pack.
Like tracing the letter C...
Matching words to pictures...
Creating a cat and yarn color book...
And completing a What Comes Next? pattern page!
Finally, we headed to our local SPCA to make a donation of cat food and visit with some of the sweet cats there!
Both Piper and Taitum loved this!
The hard part was not bringing one home with us!
That was one jam packed week!
But so many wonderful memories were made and we learned so much!
This was definitely one of our favorite books to row!