Monster Math Craft

halloween math This math craft activity is the perfect example of mixing directed learning and creativity. When I create activities like these I try to make them appeal to the kids who love creative art as well as the ones that are excited by the math. You will find that there is a ton of overlap as well, kids who are into math love art, kids who are great readers love to move, and when we only focus on one way to teach we miss out on so much fun as well as learning. When I created this activity I messed up. My kids were my testers and the activity failed the game test. I tried to make it a game but it was too complicated and I really need to avoid having my kids compete with such a huge age difference. As a craft it was much more fun and we abandoned the game idea a few minutes in.

For a simpler and re0usable version of this craft check out our Monster Math Tray, it’s perfect for a small PreK classroom!

Gather your materials. You will need some card stock, some brightly colored paint daubers or markers, scissors, glue, dice, and a ton of googly eyes. math monster craft supplies

Start by folding your card stock in half and cutting out a monster. I just cut our squiggles and spikes and go for it. math monster template

Set out your paint daubers and invite your math whizzes to the table. Let them decorate their monsters with the paint or markers. I like using these paint daubers because they dry fast and for this activity that is a must. Markers would be perfect too. math monster for kids

When they are done painting the monster it’s time to introduce the glue ,googly eyes…and dice.

Each creator takes a turn rolling the dice and adds that many eyes to their monster. Only the roller added the eyes on their turn. math game and monster craft for kids

To put a limit on the eyes I had a number line and we blacked out the numbers as they were rolled. monster math number lineIf we rolled a blacked out number we rolled again until we rolled one that had not been blacked out. This gave them extra practice substituting the amounts on the dice and adding as well as adding a team element to trying to black out the number line. Hearing them say ” Come on roll a 6, we need a six.” is not really ground breaking but little instances likes these add up and build teamwork that all families can use.monster math for elementary

They rolled a lot of the high numbers first… monster math craft for preschooland then we could not roll a 2 to save our lives! My 4 year old suggested ” Just use one die instead it will be easier.” Now here’s the thing, The point of the two dice were to provide more opportunities to subitize, and add larger amounts but I couldn’t just ignore that at 4 she was busting out some awesome logic and I wanted to support that. So we put away one die and kept rolling until we got our last number we needed. monster math for PreK

Let the monsters dry and enjoy the fun math monster! googly eye monster math activity for kids

 

Glitter Heart Recycled Crayons

recycled crayon favors for frozen themed  partyMy daughter like so many other young kids loves the movie Frozen. These DIY recycled crayons were inspired by the movie and the frozen heart that gets unfrozen by true love. This post is not at all sponsored by or affiliated with by Disney. It is simply a spin on a craft we’ve made before inspired by our favorite movie.  What I like about making crayons is that the finished product is a huge motivator for drawing and writing. Children are proud of what they’ve made and that motivates them to use the new writing tool.

Gather your materials. You will need some crayons in icy colors like white, grey, blue and teal. Silver and blue glitter, a silicone heart shaped pan and plain cookie sheet, and 2 containers to hold the broken crayons and paper.

Have your child sort through crayons to find the colors.sparkly heart recycled crayons

Peel the paper off. This is fantastic fine motor work so let them go to town on this step. Pop the crayons in one cup and the paper in the other.frozen inspired crayons for kids

Shake some glitter into the heart shaped pan.  Add the broken crayons and then add some more glitter.frozen heart recycled glitter crayons

Set your oven to 250 and pop the pan on a cookie sheet and into the oven. Turn the oven light on and watch the crayons melt. They shouldn’t smoke at this temp but every oven is different please watch the crayons the whole time.recycled frozen heart crayons for kids

Once melted take out and let cool.frozen heart recycled crayons for little hands

Pop out !

heart shaped crayons

Add the new crayons to your writing center, use for party favors, or just a fun add on to your box of crayons.

 

 

 

 

Kids Crafts & Activities { Link Up ! }

Happy Sunday!

It’s time to link up to Link & Learn and show us what kids crafts and activities you have created with your kids this week.

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If you have never linked up before this is the easiest linky party around. All you need to do is link up below. I’d love for you to check out some of the other links as well or see some of my favorites on Pinterest.



15 Books About Cars and Trucks with Crafts To Match!

car and truck ideas for preschool We love cars and trucks and everything else that goes with them at our house. My son was obsessed with garbage trucks first, then moved to firetrucks, and my daughter loves bulldozers so much she had a bulldozer themed birthday party. Needless to say we have read a lot of truck themed books and created many fun car and truck crafts and learning activities. I have matched 15 of our favorite transportation themed books with activities and crafts that match them. I hope this post and all our other Read & Make` posts help you find simple activities to do with your kids or students.

The book link takes you to amazon and is an affiliate link while the craft link will take you to the full tutorial for the craft or activity.

 

Read and Make cars and trucks 15

 

Read I Love Trucks! by Philoemen Sturges and explore tire tracks with small transportation toys. This is great for toddlers.

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Learn all about emergency vehicles  in  Emergency! by Gail Gibbons that race to fires and then work on fine motor development with this ripping and gluing letter f activity. Read and Make cars and trucks 13

 

The Wheels on the School Bus by Mary-Alice Moore is the perfect match for this fun school bus craft. Read and Make cars and trucks 12

 

Read  Trashy Town by Andrea Zimmerman and David Clemesha and then work on shape recognition with this simple shape garbage truck craft.

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See all the different kinds of trucks on the road in I’m a Truck by Dennis Shealy then pop outside and give all your different kinds of trucks a good wash!Read and Make cars and trucks 10

 

Read about Firefighter Frank in this great book by Monica Wellington and then make him a shape firetruck. Read and Make cars and trucks 9

My Truck is Stuck! by Kevin Lewis is a funny book and after reading about this stuck truck you can help your child develop fine motor skills with this cool straw truck craft.

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Truck Driver Tom by Monica Wellington is another great book by one of our favorite author illustrators and after reading you can create your own town and drive Tom all over it with this upcyled doormat roadway. Read and Make cars and trucks 7

 

Read Flashing Fire Engines by Tony Mitton  and then work on number recognition and number writing with these count and write fire trucks! Read and Make Cars & Trucks 6

 

Read Alphabeep!: A Zipping, Zooming ABC by Debora Pearson a great alphabet book and then work on sorting letters into upper and lowercase with this alphabet road activity. Read and Make Cars & Trucks 5

 

Curl up and read Sputter, Sputter, Sput! by Babs Bell and then make your own traffic light craft that is also a color matching activity!

 

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Learn all about how roads are made in Road Builders by B.G. Hennessy then make your own roads with construction vehicles with this truck track art activity!

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Count all the construction vehicles in Construction Countdown by K.C Olson then create your own construction site with this construction themed sensory activity. 

 

Read and Make Cars & Trucks 2

 

Race to read The Berenstain Bears and the Big Road Race by Stan and Jan Berenstain and then use car makes for a literacy activity. This car alphabet is perfect for your car obsessed kiddo!

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Last but far from least is this perfect pair. Read Machines at Work by Byron Barton then create this fun bulldozer craft using all sorts of shapes.

Fingerpaint & Fine Motor Acorn Craft

fingerpaint acorn craftEven though we don’t see many acorns around here we still love creating fun acorn crafts like this simple fine motor acorn craft. We love mixing colors and I wanted to incorporate making the color brown into our lesson. While you and I know that the simplest way to make brown is to mix two complimentary colors together ( red & green , yellow & purple , orange & blue ) that doesn’t let your child explore as much as I know she’d want to. Instead I let her use trial and error to make it. If paint or time is short put two complimentary colors out and have them mix them together.

The buttons add another dimension to the craft but their inclusion also welcomes counting, shape recognition and some great fine motor work.

Gather your materials. You will need some light colored card stock, a pencil, scissors, plate, paint colors in whatever colors your child thinks will mix to make brown, glue, and some buttons. We also used some paper towel to blot the paint. I find when we finger paint we glop it on super think and this technique is a fun and practical way to make drying time reasonable. acorn craft for children

Start by drawing an acorn on the card stock. I made the bottom part a little longer than usual because after it’s painted you will cut these two sections apart and glue the top onto the bottom. It will need a little extra length so that the bottom and top can be glue together later. acorn craft for kids drawing

Mix the paint. These are the colors we initially chose to mix brown. It ended up too green so we kept mixing. color mixing color brown acorn craft

 

Add more paint as you wish to get closer to brown.  If your child doesn’t want to keep mixing and the color isn’t brown yet. Don’t worry just label the color you did make ” Wow the blue, red and white paint mixed to make light purple, cool!” acorns can be purple, or olive green, or neon yellow when they are handmade acorns. Do not get hung up on everything looking just like it does in nature. If you are worried that your child will think acorns really are purple simply make a note to say that the purple acorn is extra special because in real life acorns are brown. You can get the facts straight but don’t squash the artistic spirit either. acorn painting for preschool

Paint the acorn. We chose to finger paint but you can use brushes, bath poofs, sponges, even bubble wrap would make a cool texture! acorn activity for children

If like my little artist you end up with HEAPS of paint you can blot it with paper towel. I love doing this and my daughter loves it too because it leaves a neat texture behind. acorn craft with finger paint

Let dry. This makes a great 2 day project for a young classroom or a two part one for a older class letting it dry throughout the day and revisiting this second half after lunch.

Cut the top half and bottom half out and then glue back together. Use some of the discarded painted paper to make a little stem. acorn craft for preschool

Time to glue on the buttons. acorn fine motor craft for kidsWhen I envisioned this I imagined an acorn cap FULL of buttons but this wasn’t MY project. I didn’t tell my daughter where to add them just handed her the glue and buttons. Some children might line the cap in buttons, fill it completely, add the buttons to the bottom, maybe even add an initial made of buttons to the acorn… there are so many different possibilities let your little artists explore.button acorn craft for kids

Add glue and buttons. She LOVED watching the glue squish through the holes in the buttons. acorn craft for preschool fine motor development

Let dry again! acorn craft for kids

 

15 Fall Books For Children

 

Need some great fall books for your little readers? These are our favorites! See the full list here.