Monday, February 21, 2011

Quiet Box #1

C no longer naps and there are times when I need to get stuff done - without the "help" of a 2 year old. After seeing the idea on several other blogs, I came up with 7 quiet boxes, enough for every day of the week.  I usually save shoe boxes and had enough that were big to store the items in.

Every afternoon while J naps, I get out a box for C and she sits in her room (or our room) and plays with the contents of the box for that day. We have been doing the boxes for about 2 weeks now and she loves them. So far she hasn't grown bored with them and even asks to play with the boxes, even when it isn't "quiet time". 

This is Monday's box

 Name matching - I put letter stickers on flat marbles. C has to match the letters to her's and J's first, middle and our last name
 Small foam puzzles. I thought it would be to overwhelming to include the entire alphabet, so only the letters of her name are included.
Felt shapes to sort and create with on the felt board

Lacing beads

 Picture matching/puzzles - I got this a few years ago, probably at the dollar store. On one side you match things that go together. On the other side is a puzzle with those 2 items.

 Barrel of monkeys
Color sort (I made this game several years ago for my preschool class - items are plastic bottle lids, small toys, pom poms, marker lids, colored clothes pins, Legos, foam pieces, etc)

I give C about 30-45 minutes to do the activities on her own. Sometimes she wants to do them longer and sometimes I sit with her and play along. I love seeing the creative ways she comes up with playing with the items.

I am always on the look out for more activities to include in the boxes and things in each box change as I find new things. I will try my best to post the other boxes soon.

***I trust C to not put any of this stuff in her mouth.
Please use caution when choosing items for your own child***

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Shapes, Colors and Counting

I came across these games in my collection when I was looking for things to put in "quiet boxes" for C (more about those later)

I cut out a few shapes using the colors we were working on at the time. I put the larger shapes I cut out on a piece of big paper, the smaller shapes on the cards. I wrote how many counters I wanted the children to put on the shapes. I made the two games below, but you could use any shape, colors and numbers you wish, making it age appropriate (I made this a few years ago for an older preschool classroom). For counters you could use anything - pom poms, erasers, flat marbles, beads, etc.

abc button

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

Today I plan on making heart shaped pancakes for breakfast and making a heart shaped pizza tonight, with a few other special touches through out the day.

I thought I would include some of Valentine ideas that are out there in blog land that we didn't get to, maybe next year! 

Mommy Ways Valentine Tangram

 Pre-K Pages I Love...

Craftzine Heart Lei

 Chalk in my Pocket DIY Heart Stamps
Ready, Set, Read! Letter Game

 Totally Tots Cookie cutter painting

 Happy Clippings Heart Garland

I Can Teach my Child ABC match

 In My Spare Time Heart Shape Match

Raising Memories Melted Crayon Sun Catcher

Sunday, February 13, 2011

From the Bottom of my Heart

I remember making Valentine's with this saying when I student taught 1st grade
(I think I figured out that those kids are in 9th grade now!)

 I remember the Valentines the 1st graders made were more like posters with lots of construction paper (I wish I had a picture because I remember them being very nice) but I wanted to keep it simple for C and just used some washable paint and printer paper
This was her Valentine for me ;)

(This post contains affiliate links)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Tube Painting

I have seen this idea on a few blogs lately and wanted to try it with C. She loves painting.

All you need is an empty cardboard tube (we used a TP tube) and bend it so it is shaped like a heart. Eventually she started using the tube like a paint brush, she said she wanted to scribble instead of make hearts.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Heart Rainbow & Heart Hunt

I was going to have C make another wreath for her other grandma (which is why my wreath post is called wreath #1) But, at Awana this week, she made this (C added more hearts at home)

 I am annoyed with my pictures, they are rotating on their own, anyone know how to fix this? They aren't rotated in my picture folders
So, I decided to have her make a heart rainbow instead. I eventually helped her with gluing, but she put all the hearts on the rainbow by herself.

I also hid hearts around the house for her to find.
(I think we will do this again, but I will write a simple activity to do on the hearts - like read a book, or jump up and down 10 times, or sing the ABCs)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Long Distance Hug

(This post contains affiliate links)

This year I wanted to send long distance family members a special Valentine from our girls, but I wasn't sure what.  Until I remembered an idea I used a few years ago with my former students (similar to this).  But I didn't want to fold up that much paper into an envelope, so I used ribbon instead.

I measured the arm spans of both girls and cut ribbon the same length (C and I did some comparing with the 2 sizes and measured with the tape measure)

I helped the girls paint hand prints, I cut them out and glued onto the ends of the ribbon.

The grandparents, both near and far, enjoyed receiving their special hugs.

**Not brave enough to use paint with your child?
Trace their hand on construction paper instead**

Check it out, we made this project again
Long Distance Hug Revisited

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tissue Paper Hearts

I wanted to brighten up our wintery view, so I had C put tissue paper of various Valentine colors on the sticky side of contact paper.

When we were done (I ended up having to help her out), I cut hearts out and put them in our window.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Kiss Necklace

After I saw the sweetest necklace on Serving Pink Lemonade, I wanted to make one too. I used Hershey Kisses instead of Starbursts and used tulle instead of plastic wrap.

We made 2, one for each of C's Awana teachers (who are also friends of ours)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Sorting Stickers

I didn't get around to posting a Valentine idea yesterday. It was a busy day, plus we live in WI and there was this little thing called the Super Bowl :) 

Today's activity is pretty simple

C sorted 3 different colors of stickers by placing them on 3 heart cutouts. When she was done, she said one was for me, one was for Daddy and the other for J.

abc button

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Simple Math Game

I posted this activity last year but since I really like this game, as did C, I thought I would repost it.

All you need is a heart glued onto a piece of paper and some pom poms (or cotton balls, or any other small object)
C stood above the heart and dropped 3 pom poms. She then counted how many landed on the heart and how many landed off of the heart. We even counted how many landed on the carpet when that happened. It is a great beginning math skill game! You can make it as easy or hard as you want. Plus, it can easily be used for any day use by using different shapes.

abc button

Friday, February 4, 2011

Magnetic Hearts

 I cut out foam hearts using my heart hole punch. Then I hot glued a small magnet on the back. When they were ready, C put them on all on our fingerprint covered refrigerator.

She had fun sorting the hearts by color. We also counted them and made patterns.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Sensory/Activity Box

I made C the ever popular Valentine sensory box. I filled it with practically everything I could find in my collection of stuff that was white, red or pink. Along with some heart shaped erasers that are none of those colors. I even added a few other items after I took the picture above. While C was playing with it we discovered a few ways to play with the variety of materials inside, so it became more of an activity box than a sensory box.

 pom poms in an ice cube tray
 pom poms inside caps

 Tracing name with heart erasers

 Stacking a variety of lids

 hair ties on a pencil

 Flat marbles on foam hearts and lined up on a foam strip

 Flat marbles on the hole punch puzzle I posted about yesterday

 Pom Poms on top of foam blocks

 Straws on pipe cleaners
 Pipe cleaners inside of pegboard pieces. A few of them also have straws on them. I do have pony beads, but I didn't add those until after we did this.

There are probably several other ways to play with the box, time to go explore some more!

abc button