Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Exploring Wildlife

On our recent trip to the mountains, we loved observing wildlife!  It's usually the highlight of our trip and this trip was pretty special, because we spotted something that we've never seen before- except for at our zoo of course.

Yeah, our first bear sighting!!  I wish I got a better pic, but there he is... see above!  We were so excited!

Seeing Elk is always a treat!  They are such beautiful creatures.

Little critters are always fun as well.  I felt bad for this little guy.. little man would not leave him alone.  He even named him Yellowy.

Oh... and I even had fun observing my own little wild things!!

For more nature related activities and fun, be sure to visit my post at The Activity Mom.. Nature Activities. You'll find ideas for learning and creating with sticks and stones!

Enjoy your day!
Jen

Monday, July 30, 2012

Ice Cream Activities

Recently, I posted my ideas for an ice cream week with the kiddos!  Well, we had fun testing ice cream, making a craft, reading an ice cream mystery and more.  Take a peek.....

Ice Cream Craft



Materials: ice cream template, tissue paper, markers, stickers, scrapbook paper, scissors

Ice cream Word Search


Materials: Word Search, pencil, and ice cream for eating!

Literature:
The Ice Cream Mystery by
Gertrude Chandler Warner

Should I Share My Ice Cream?
by Mo Willems

Ice Cream Taste Test

Images courtesy of DailyClipArt.net
Choose a variety of ice cream flavors for your kiddos to try!  Blind fold them or have them close their eyes.  Which flavor is their favorite? Can they guess the flavor? 

We tested the following flavors: Spumoni, Rasberry Chocolate Chip, and Pecan Turtle Trail

For more ideas for an ice cream taste test, visit No Time For Flashcards: 5 Senses- Ice Cream Taste Test




We're not done celebrating the joy of ice cream just yet. 
Stay tuned for more ice cream fun!

Jen

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Make Your Own Chewing Gum Kit-Review and Giveaway

My kids LOVE to make things... their own chocolate candy, cakes, popsicles- you name it!  So when I had the opportunity to review A Make Your Own Chewing Gum Kit, I knew that they would be thrilled. 


First, we read background information about chicle, the sap that comes from Sapodilla trees in the rainforest.  The kit came with this information and a short story about a worker in the rainforest and how he collects the sap from the trees.  It also shared about how we can contribute to saving rainforests by supporting workers.  My girls found this very interesting.

The kit includes the following: chicle gum base, confectioner's sugar, corn syrup packet, 2 flavor packets, and a black plastic pan


After reading the instructions, we prepped the dining room table.  I taped wax paper down, but you could use a cutting board or other clean, flat surface. You do need a rolling pin or bottle.

To soften the chicle, the kids microwaved it and stirred it.  Then they added the softened corn syrup. Yes, it has corn syrup and confectioner's sugar, but at least it is all natural. (no chemicals or synthetic ingredients) I liked that they included a container to heat the material, because it is very sticky.








Little man got in on the action, too!  He's stirring the chicle here and syrup. Is he tasting it, too? 


The kids had fun kneading the chicle mixture with the confectioner's sugar!  I loved how all of the kids could get involved even though the suggested age is for 8 and up!  Little man is lucky to have two older siblings to help him.


After flattening the gum, I did let my 10 year old use a cutting knife to cut it.  Carefully, of course!

Now for the ultimate question!  Did they like the taste of the bubble gum?  Hmmm.  What do you think?

They made bubble gum and cherry flavored and gave both
 a thumbs up.

A messy, but oh so fun activity to do with your kids!

To purchase:
Visit-
All Natural Glee Gum and Make Your Own Candy Kits.

For a free coupon for glee gum....
CLICK HERE.
To win...
I'm giving away one Make Your Own Candy Kit!  You can choose from three kits: Make Your Own Chewing Gum Kit, Make Your Own Chocolate Kit, or Make Your Own Gummies Kit.
Enter by visiting Glee Gum's website.  Come back and comment about which kit you'd like to win.  Be sure to include a contact email or blog address.

For extra entries:
Follow Creative and Curious Kids on google friend connect.
Like Creative and Curious Kids on facebook.
Like Glee Gum on facebook.
Like Creative and Curious Kids on Twitter.
Like Glee Gum on Twitter.
Create a blog post sharing this giveaway. (2 entries)

Good luck! Excited to be able to share one of these kits with my readers!
Contest ends  8/4/2012- (Continental US only) 

Jen

Disclaimer: I was compensated with one kit to review.  There was no monetary compensation given for the above post.  All opinions are my own and my childrens' and may differ from other's.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Learning the 50 States

Would you like a great way to teach your kids
the 50 states? 

...through music!
 
My girls learned all 50 states in alphabetical order by learning this song... Fifty Nifty United States.  Here's  a fun video that you can share with your children to help them learn all 50 states. 



Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas...la, la, la...

Jen

Monday, July 16, 2012

Ten Indoor Balloon Activities


Too hot to go outside? 
Blow up a batch of balloons for some indoor fun. 
Smiles are free!

1.  Traditional Keep it up- how many taps before the balloon falls on the ground?
2.  Keep it up soccer style... with anything but your hands- use your head, elbow, feet, etc.
3.  Use a sheet to keep balloons in the air as a team.
4.  Preschool play- count, sort by color. 
                                                                                                                                                                                 

                  
5.  Play a fun Balloon Game 
    (recent post at The Activity Mom)

  





6.  Balloon Walk- who can keep the balloon between their knees the longest as they walk around the room. 
7.  Experiment with electricity activities.
8.  Research the history of balloons.
9.  ABC balloon match- write lower case and upper case letters on balloons- have little ones match.
10.  Pump up the music and have a dance party

Need a few or more ideas... 

*Children's book suggestions from
  everything preschool.

*Wow! hands on: as we grow has collection of 30 different ideas for balloons!

Which activity or activities do you think your kiddos would enjoy?
Jen


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

More Ideas for Summer Fun

Well, we are off to the mountains
for the rest of the week!

  This is calling me....

I hope that you are enjoying your summer.  If you need some ideas while we're gone, here are some of my past posts that have been popular.


Summer Activities 
Creative Summer Games
Life at the Pond
Summer Activity Board
Summer Bucket List


Guest Posts..@ The Activity Mom
Learn and Play with Water Balloons
Seashell Activities
Summer Bingo (printable)
10 Ways to Make Summer Reading Fun


Have a wonderful week!
Jen

Monday, July 9, 2012

Fun Photo Shoot!



I caught little man investigating my camera this morning, so I started taking pictures of him.  He liked looking at each picture and then enjoyed changing his expressions. 

He's a funny little bugger, I tell ya!

Mom had fun editing the pics- I'm not much of a photographer, but it sure is fun being creative! 








 


Any caption ideas for some of these pics? 

Blast to the past.. Photo fun with the girls!

Enjoy your Monday!
Jen

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Ice cream Activities?

I'm in the process of planning an ice cream week with my kiddos.  July is National Ice Cream Month- yummy.  I  love ice cream more than any other dessert. I don't know if it is because I worked at an ice cream shop as a teenager or what?  Anyways, if you have any great ideas or book suggestions for my ice cream week, let me know. (ages 2.5, 8, and 10)
Just comment below or send me an email.  If I use your idea, I'll be sure to link to you. :) 

So far this is what I have planned....

-Reading a book about the history of the ice cream cone
-Ice cream flavor testing
-Make homemade ice cream
-Open ended ice cream cone craft
-Ice cream colors for little man and counting
-Ice cream activities- mazes/word search
-Make your own banana split to celebrate end of week


 
Here's how we've celebrated in the past..
Ice Cream Math and More

Ice Cream post..
Ii is for Ice Cream

Any ideas? I'd love to hear from you! 
Jen

Friday, July 6, 2012

Summer Fun Activities

This week we had a chance to try out a new Summer Bingo game that I created.  Little man didn't quite get how to play, but he must of enjoyed it, because he asked to play it the next day.  For a free printable and to get the scoop about the game, be sure to my most recent post at  The Activity Mom.

I'm always looking for fun and simple ways to entertain the kids during these long hot days. Pinterest has been a wonderful resource for finding ideas and activities for Summer Fun!  Here are a few of my favorite pins on my Summer Board...

Icy Pirate Boats from Pink and Green Mama

Take a Hike Leaf Print Tees from Skip to My Lou

Chalk Treasure Hunt from Nuture Store

What summer fun ideas have you found on Pinterest?

I hope that you are enjoying your summer!
Jen

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Fourth of July Activities

Happy 4th of July!  I finally got around to doing some fun activities with the kids to celebrate Independence Day.  Sit back, read, and enjoy!  Hopefully you'll find something fun to do with your family.

Activity 1: Noisemakers

                                                                     
Have fun making these 4th of July noisemakers. Peanut is shown above with her festive horn.

 Materials: party horns, star stickers, ribbon, pom poms, glue


Little Man working hard on his noisemaker. ( with a little help from Momma)


Sunshine Girl making lots of noise!  She did a great job decorating her horn.

Activity 2: Painting with Marbles
The kiddos seemed to really enjoy this activity.  We were experimenting to see if our paintings would look like fireworks.
 Materials: Red and Blue Paint, Wash bin, 2 marbles, 2 Ziplock bags,
and white paper

Directions:
1. Tape a white piece of paper in the middle of a wash bin.  Be sure to tape on all 4 sides.
                  
2.  Fill two Ziploc bags with paint.  Next, put one marble in each bag. Squish around to get paint on the marble.

3. Drop the marbles onto the white paper. Move the wash bin around so the marble rolls paint over the paper.  On the painting below, we tried squeezing a little bit more paint on the paper to see what would happen.  (Just a thicker affect with the lines.)


Activity 3: Sensory Bags
With the left over paint bags, I created a simple sensory/drawing activity.  I taped the bags closed so that the paint would stay inside.  Next, I demonstrated for little man how to draw shapes and letters and then erase. 



Activity 4: Exploring Ice Cubes

Little man watched as I put the ice cube tray in the freezer. I showed him the water in each star.  He also enjoyed playing with the colored ice cubes before I put them in the freezer.  He was surprised to touch and feel them when they were frozen.  He squeezed the cube and said.. glass.  I explained to him that the water inside froze. 
After discussing states of matter- preschool style, I gave little man some time to explore with the frozen cubes. He even enjoyed playing with the melted ice and transferring the water back and forth.

For more 4th of July ideas, visit The Activity Mom!  I shared a few toddler ideas over there today as well. 

Well, that's all folks.  For now, anyways!  Have a safe and fun holiday!
Happy 4th of July!
Jen and family


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