Thursday, January 31, 2013

Creative Valentine Critters

One of my favorite creative Valentine activities to do with my children when they were younger was to make little critters with different sized and colored hearts. My big girls would probably still enjoy this activity today.

Here are some of their creations from the past.  They even decorated a pink tree one year with their adorable animals!  This idea originally came from Preschool Playbook and I posted about it.. here.

I wanted to share the idea with you again, because today I came across a video that would supplement this activity perfectly!  Below you will see just a preview of this digital picture book.  The full book can be purchased for just $3 at TPT store. (which I just purchased because little man loved the preview.. it is really cute.  We must have played it 3 times in a row)

To inspire creativity, my suggestion would be to show just part of the book before creating creatures and then sharing the rest of the book after creatures have been created.  This gives your child or student a chance to create their own unique ideas.  (unless your 3 year old begs you and drives you nutty, so you show him the whole thing! Ha!)

Happy Valentine's....

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Simple Valentine Craft

Today we made this cute little love bug with just a few materials.
Red card stock
Pink Construction Paper
Toilet Paper Roll
Bendy Straw
Glue and Tape
Directions:  First I measured my red paper to fit around the toilet paper roll and then cut to fit.  Next, I cut out a large red heart and two pink smaller hearts- one for the head and one a little bit larger to fit inside the red heart.
Now it is ready for the little ones to get to work.
1. Have your child put glue on the red rectangle.  Help your little one glue it around the toilet paper roll.  Tape to secure.
2.  Now instruct your child to glue the pink heart on the red heart.  Next, glue onto the back of the roll.
3.  Next, glue the smaller pink heart for a head.  I added a face.  Depending on the age of the child, they may want to try to draw the face themselves. 
4.  Cut bendy straws and help your child tape them inside the tube. 
Optional:  add more small hearts to the bugs body or legs.  Also,  can use heart stickers.
The little one that I babysit is 18 months.  She hugged her bug when it was finished.  So cute!
Before or after the craft, read the adorable book- You're My Little Love Bug.
Our version lights up and plays music.  My little man loves it. (a gift from Momma last Valentine's Day!)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

We Teach Gifted and Enrichment

Just wanted to share some exciting news!  I decided to start a group on
We Teach that focuses on meeting the needs of high-end learners.  This is the place where we can share and learn from each other.  With 10 years of experience working in this field, I'm hoping that I can share my knowledge and resources with this community of teachers, but also learn from you and see things from a regular classroom teacher's perspective.  What challenges do you have meeting varying needs? What subjects are you good at enriching?  What tools have been successful? 

Come and join We Teach Gifted and Enrichment and share you ideas!   


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Dora and Diego Birthday Party

Cupcakes anyone?
Happy Birthday to me....
Taco bar for the kiddos!
Dora even came to the party!

For more WW, be sure to check out all of the pics at 5 Minutes for Mom!

Happy Wednesday,

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Paper Towel Name Practice

Little man rolled out my paper towels this morning and chanted happily... "Mom, I made a road." 

Momma's reaction.. "Aww Man, that's my last roll of paper towels.. you should really ask first."

So I decided to do something useful with little man's road.  On each square, I wrote  a letter to his name.  He jumped on each letter as I said it.

"Just like hopscotch, Mommy!"

So if your kiddo gets into trouble, who know maybe you can turn it into a learning opportunity.

Enjoy your day!


Monday, January 21, 2013

Toddler Activity

Plastic Salt and Pepper Shakers
Plastic bear pics

I found the above materials at the Dollar Tree recently.  For fine motor developement, I created this simple activity.  The bears pics are rounded at the edges, so you don't have to worry about your little one getting poked. I found them in the baby shower section. 

Always something interesting to be found that can be used in a different way to promote learning and growth! 


Saturday, January 19, 2013

Jj is for Jellyfish

Little man and his buddy have been having fun every Friday working on an Alphabet art book.  I found the idea over at the blog..All Our Days and it has been such a wonderful resource.  This past Friday, we worked on Jj is for Jellyfish.  For our art activity, we created a jellyfish with paper plates cut in half, markers, and cut streamers. 
The kids had fun chasing each other with the jellyfish after they learned the tentacles can sting. 
After pretend play, they secured them in their alphabet books. I'm using a colored folder and plastic insert sheets to hold their projects.  You can print out an alphabet sheet for each letter for free at All Our Days.
Here are just a couple of examples of other projects we've completed:
A is for apple prints

Ee is for elbow painting

Have fun being creative and learning with your kids!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Indoor Snow Activity

Haven't had a chance to take your child out into the snow?  If you've been feeling guilty about that like this Momma, just bring the snow indoors!  Great activity for all ages.  The little one above (age 17 months) didn't get her hands cold, because she used the different tools that I provided.  She loved trying out different tools and testing the texture of the snow.

Little man (age 3) on the other hand kept putting his hands in the cold snow and even made a snowball.
As the snow melted, I asked him questions like, where do you think the snow is going and why do you think it is melting?  Where does snow come from? 
If you don't have snow, you can still have winter fun indoors with Artic Ice Sensory Play from No Time for Flash Cards.  (I just ordered my Artic animals to do this with little man. So excited!)
Simple activities for play and beginning Science!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Super Boy!

Okay, Where did my baby boy go?  My little super boy just turned 3.  Three is very colorful to say the least!

Have a great Wednesday!  Hopefully I will have time to blog more or visit your blogs.  I'm still writing part-time for The Activity Mom.. so catch some fun ideas over there as well. 

For more Wordless Wednesday, be sure to visit 5 Minutes for Mom!


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