I was very excited to have Israel in our geography hop. I love this country and its people, and three of my grandparents were Jewish. My grandmother on my father’s side always wanted to see Israel. Unfortunately, this didn’t happen, but all her three sons visited, and one of them lives there permanently. I am really looking forward to my next visit, because I can see my cousin’s little son who is the first true Israeli in our family, just as my daughter is the first American. This picture is from the trip I made when I was about 6 weeks pregnant with Anna – she was very fascinated to learn that she visited Israel in my tummy. Of course, according to her, she was in my tummy always since I was a baby :)
We read several books about Israel, but the only one that was on appropriate level for a preschooler was Sammy Spider’s First Trip to Israel. It’s a wonderful book, and I liked how the author described Israel using five senses – its colors, its tastes, its music. Anna was also pleased to learn her first Hebrew word – Shalom and informed me that now she speaks a little bit of Hebrew too. The book also mentions various famous places of Israel, so older children might enjoy it too. I want to note, however, that in this book the Israel is visited by a Jewish family, and holy sites of other religions are not mentioned.
Another book that we read was Colors of Israel. I wasn’t thrilled with it, especially seeing how color yellow was described as the color of a robot designed to inspect suspicious backpacks and blow them up if needed. Still, I suggested to paint something using colors of the flag of Israel – white and blue. It lasted about 5 minutes, then more colors were requested, and Anna’s favorite activity, color mixing, began.
We also talked about deserts and hot climates a lot lately, so I picked up a neat sand painting kit at $1 section of Michael’s. It came with two “color by number” pictures, only numbers were actually stickers that one can peel off and fill the sticky surface with the colored sand. I was impressed with how ingeniously the kit was done and how great the end result looked like. Anna was very proud of her “desert pictures” and was showing them off to papa in the evening.
I am still hoping to do a science mini-unit on Dead Sea by the weekend – stay tuned :). In the meantime hop over to History/Geography at Children Grow, Children Explore, Children Learn.