Howl at the Moon!

Crescent Moon!

This morning my son looked out the window and proclaimed ” Moon” while pointing out the window, sure enough there it was staring down at us at 6 am! For a simple art project like this I like to use different painting tools to enrich it.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need one yellow and one black piece of construction paper, a white or yellow crayon, glue, sparkly paint and anything else to decorate your moon. We used do a dot art dobbers, and a fun brush for our sparkle paint.
  2. Have your child draw stars in the night sky. Using the white or yellow crayon color on the black paper.
  3. While they draw stars draw a classic crescent moon , don’t cut it out yet.
  4. Time to decorate the moon, we started with the dobbers.
  5. Then moved to the fun brush and sparkle paint. Let dry.
  6. Cut the moon out and glue onto your starry sky!


~Phases of the Moon
Wheel~

I do not suggest doing this with really young children, as you can see from the picture my son made a quick job undoing my work! However if you have a school aged child this is a fun and easy activity for learning about Earth’s moon!
  1. Gather your materials. You will need a paper plate, some yellow and black paper, scissors, a fine tip marker, glue , and a brad.
  2. Using the paper plate at the template trace a circle on the black paper. Cut it out.
  3. Fold the circle in half and cut a section out. This will be your viewing window. Set it aside.
  4. Using your yellow paper cut out the different phases of the moon, deciding if you will do all the phases waxing and waning .
  5. Write the phases name on the underside of the plate and glue the moon on, repeat for all the phases you are including. You may want to space this out before writing, to make sure you have enough space on your plate. Let dry.
  6. Poke a small brad through the center of the black circle with the viewing window and attach it to the center of the paper plate.
  7. Spin and enjoy!

X marks the spot

Naptime Creation
Treasure Map!

This easy peasy treasure map is so much more than a craft, it is a tool for learning and endless fun. Although I have this listed as a naptime creation younger preschoolers could do this with a lot of adult help, but kids of all ages will enjoy the games played withthe maps once they are made.
  1. Gather your materials. You will need some white paper, permanent markers ( see why it’s not a toddler activity?), used coffee grinds in the filter, and some ribbon.
  2. Using permanent markers draw a treasure map. I like to use things in my backyard as the “stops” in the map. I have our trees, a basket ball and blocks – you don not have to use real things. However for the activity below using real things will make it easier.
  3. Taking out most of the coffee grinds rub the outside of the filter all over your map to make it look old and dirty! Let dry. You can also use tea but it takes much longer and we all know how much kids love to wait.
  4. Randomly rip the edges to make the map look more authentic!
  5. Roll up and scrunch and secure with a ribbon!
All Ages
Treasure Hunt
A few years ago I had a small but amazing class of 2-3 year olds who challenged me because they were such smart little people. In an effort to find a fun outdoor activity I developed this map game. I would draw a map and together we would all follow it. Using your map you can go to each “stop” then you must complete a challenge before moving on.Here is where I snuck in some totally unrelated learning. At the stops the challenges were things like : Sing the alphabet, find something blue, jump in the air 5 times, find a word that rhymes with pig… anything but they loved it. After a few times playing with me they became the masterminds and developed their own challenges- pretty cool for children who weren’t even potty trained!

With my toddler we went to the park and hid his new ball. We busted out the map( that I made ) and followed the pictures. We counted to ten, reached up high, found something red and touched our noses! As you can see you have to fit the challenges to the specific child but trust me, everyone will be having so much fun they won’t even notice all the learning they are doing!

 

Letter of the week ! K k !

King
K !

I hope this activity is useful to someone because as I write this my son and I are covered in glitter despite bathing !

  1. Gather your materials. You will need 2 foam sheets ( construction paper is a fine alternative) , some glue, sequin, glitter , scissors and a pen.
  2. Draw a big K on one of the foam sheets.
  3. Cover the K in glue .
  4. Add sequins ( proud mama side note- he didn’t eat a single sequin! You may notice glue on his lips though..one thing at a time.)
  5. While your child is doing this step draw and cut out a crown in a contrasting color foam, add some glue to it.
  6. If you dare, cover it ( and possibly your child and kitchen) in glitter.
  7. Let everything dry.
  8. Cut out the K
  9. Glue the K onto a piece of construction paper and glue the crown on.
Song !

The Grand old Duke of York!

The Grand old Duke of York,
he had 10000 men,
he marched them up to the top of the hill,
and he marched them down again!

When they’re up they’re up,
and when they’re down they’re down,
and when they’re only half way up,
they’re neither up nor down !

* I normally sing this one time fast, then slow then super fast !

World Flags Banner for The Olympics

 

flags of the world banner for olympics

A special event like the Summer Olympics is a great way to get children interested in other subjects like geography. This is a fun way to decorate a classroom or house during the Olympics too! Chose your favorite countries for this world flag banner and cheer them on as they go for gold.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need color pictures of flags in an atlas or online, some markers, white paper, double stick tape or glue and a long piece of ribbon.
  2. Show your child a number of different flags and have them choose which they want to recreate. I would urge them to choose countries other than their own to do since this is a chance to learn about something new.
  3. Fold the paper , one side will be for the flag , the other to write the name of the country on the back.
  4. Color your flag.
  5. Write the name of the country on the back.
  6. Make multiple flags.
  7. Using double stick tape put one piece at the top by the fold in the paper , and one at the bottom, place your ribbon on top of the tape near the fold. Press down to seal both sides. Repeat this for each flag.
  8. Hang up and show off the worldly masterpiece!

 

Book!


” Swifter, Higher, Stronger: A Photographic History of The Summer Olympics” by Sue Macy

On my quest for some Olympic picture books at my local library I didn’t find any, but I did find this. A fantastic book for older school age children. There is a lot of text but there is also plenty of pictures with short blurbs that will appeal to younger kids. Do not expect preschoolers to sit for this, but you may enjoy reading it, I found it very interesting and the collection of photos was great!

Letter Of The Week ! Aa !

Alien
A !

There are lots of options for introducing the letter A, apples, alligators, ants to name a few but I chose to do alien since my son has shown interest in them lately. Use your children’s interests when choosing your activities , it will be more meaningful to them and everyone will have more fun !

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some construction paper or cardboard, black foam or paper , some paint, glue, scissors and a pipe cleaner.
  2. Draw a big A on the cardboard/ construction paper.
  3. Have your child paint the A in fun bright colors, we used the dot a art paint dobbers.
  4. Keep going with a new paint color! Let dry.
  5. While your child is painting cut out 2 big alien eyes, and a mouth out of the black foam sheet or construction paper.
  6. Cut out your A and add your glue. As you can see I forgot to cut it out. …so just pretend I did.
  7. Add the eyes and mouth, let dry.
  8. Poke two small holes in the top of the A and thread the pipe cleaner through. Bend it to make fun antennae.
  9. Glue the A onto a full piece of paper and voila!

~Click here for more space activities, books and songs!~

Note about Learning Letters

Spend time pointing out letters to your child throughout the day. A simple ” What do you see?” is a great way to start , there is no need for you to point out what they miss, just follow their lead. Have them help you read recipes, mail and signs at the store – yes toddlers too! Children need to see that letters are everywhere and when they learn in context they retain what they have learned well. So don’t limit yourself to just these activities, use them for what they are, a fun way to introduce a letter, but focus on learning in a comprehensive way- which for young children must include play! Don’t forget to sing, and read all kinds of books!