Friday, March 20, 2015

A Day At Snow Beach!

Do you still have snow where you live?  Even though it is officially spring, our landscape is still very much a winter wonderland.  No worries!  You can take the kids to the beach anyway...Snow Beach!

One of my dear friends gave me the idea to take the sand toys out in the snow and depending on what kind of snow you get (the wetter snow seems to stay together a little better), the toys are just as much fun as they are in the sun and sand!

You could go all out like we did and wear sunglasses, lay a towel out, and sit in a beach chair.  Or, just simply dump the sand things out in a pile and watch the creativity at work!

Have a fun day at Snow Beach everyone!

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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Early Reading Matching Game

Here is a project that is actually two activities in one!  The Early Reading Matching Game is fun to make and then play when you're all finished.  Create one game with a whole bunch of words or several themed games like colors, animals, etc.  This is also a great way to learn those sight words!

Here's what you'll need:
  • Old magazines, junk mail, catalogues, old children's books
  • Index cards or scrap paper
  • Markers
  • Scissors (help younger kids with this part!)
  • Glue
  • Zip top storage bag

To begin, cut out various pictures of simple words like we did below.  It was fun searching for the perfect pictures that we wanted to use.

If you're using index cards, you can skip this part...we used scrap card stock on hand.  Just be sure the cards are all about the same size.

Next glue one image per card.  Write the word on another card to create a set.

Do this for the remaining images...

Make as many as you want, now you're ready to play!  Scroll down to learn how (several different variations)

Several ways to play (one or more players)
  1. Version 1: Lay all cards face up and mix them up.  Have child select a picture and then have them search for the matching word.  Each time they get a correct match, they can keep the set.  Player with most sets wins.
  2. Version 2: Same as version 1, but they must also read the word out loud in order to keep the set (this eliminates "lucky guesses" for the most part)
  3. Version 3: Mix cards up and flip them over so that no one can see them.  Take turns flipping them over to make a match.  Player with most matching sets a memory game but with reading involved.
Have fun playing and reading!

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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Pocket Valentines

I just love the idea of tucking a little Valentine into a pocket, lunch, or backpack.  The idea that someone special is going about their day and discovers a cute little heart make me smile.  Make a few of these hearts for Valentine's week and see how many they can find!  Be sure to make a few extra to keep on hand throughout the year too for fun surprises all year long!

Here's what you'll need:

  • Perler beads
  • Small pegboards (no special shape required)
  • Iron
  • Ironing Paper

We made multi-color geometric looking hearts (see below for bead counts).  When you've made as many as you need, iron your beads following these easy instructions:

Click here to learn how to iron Perler beads step by step

Let cool completely and you're ready to tuck them where a special someone can find them!