Sponge Painting For Toddlers

sponge painting for babies and toddlers

Sponge painting is a wonderful way for young children to explore paint, they don’t need to have superior fine motor skills to succeed at making some fun marks on the paper. It’s the perfect toddler art activity.

  1. Gather your materials. For this art activity you will need a regular kitchen sponge, some paint, a paper plate or the like to put your paint on, paper and scissors.
  2. Cut the sponge into some good hand size shapes for your child. We’ve been learning about shapes so I made some , but you can cut out fish shapes, letters..the sky and your cutting ability is the limit!
  3. Spread some paint on a plate or tray and dip your sponge in.
  4. I like to mix colors as we paint, it’s fun and keep the kids interested, as well as asking them what shape or picture they are making with the sponge.

 

Ducks of a Feather…

Touch and Feel Ducks!
( not every craft can be cute- doesn’t this duck look a little rough?!)

  1. Gather your materials. For this duck I used 3 different pieces of paper, one for the background, one for the duck and one to cut the feet and beak out of. Also a marker for the outline and eyes, and of course glue and feathers.
  2. Draw the outline of a duck. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect, you’ll be covering most of it with feathers anyway.
  3. Spread the glue! And start feathering your duck, I thought my son would love this , and as it turned out he refused to touch a single feather. Toddlers keep you on your toes!
  4. Let the glue dry, meanwhile cut out the feet and beak.
  5. Cut the duck out and glue it onto a 2nd piece of paper, this will help make it more sturdy. If your child wants to they can decorate the background too.
  6. Add the beak and feet
  7. Voila your very own touch and feel duck!

Song!

Six little ducks!

Six little ducks that I once knew,
fat ones, skinny ones, and fair ones too,
but the one little duck with the feather on his back,
he led the others with a quack quack quack!
Quack, quack , quack,
he lead the others with a quack quack quack!
Books!

” Duck, Duck, Goose” by Tad Hills is a story about friendship and what happens when a twosome adds another person (or duck) into the mix. The author brings these characters emotions to life and children will be able to relate to Gooses feelings for sure!

” Brian Banana Duck Sunshine Yellow” by Australian author Chris McKimmie is a whimsical book, that may get some parents wondering if the author is a creative genius or an avid drinker. Kids will love the silly storyline and adults will enjoy the bits of dry wit put in especially for them. There are a few terms that are not seen often in the United States so this book would also be a fun one to use while teaching an international theme. I loved it!

“One Duck Stuck” by Phyllis Root looks like an everyday book , but inside you will find a brilliantly repetitive storyline, that promotes teamwork, and mathematical skills! My students a few years ago were nuts about this book and yours will be too!


Bunny Ears Craft

easter craft for toddlers
This was a huge hit with a group of 2.5 year olds, but younger children will still enjoy the process even if they don’t love the end result!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need 2 pieces of construction paper or card stock, some glue, cotton balls , double stick tape or a stapler and some chalk.
  2. Give your child one piece of the paper and the chalk to decorate it with. I use chalk because it gives a soft fluffy look , but don’t feel limited to that.
  3. While they color, fold the 2nd piece of paper in two .
  4. Draw a bunny ear, and cut through both layers.
  5. Using the glue attach the cotton balls to the ears. Let dry.
  6. While your child is gluing , take their colored piece of paper and cut in two lengthwise . Using double stick tape or stapler, create a headband that will fit your little bunny’s head. I don’t suggest glue, it’s too messy for this step.
  7. When the ears are completely dry attach them on either side of the headband! Again i suggest using double stick tape or a stapler for this step.
Song!

Do your ears hang low?Do your ears hang low?
Do they wobble to and fro,
Can you tie them in a knot ?
Can you tie them in a bow?
Can you through them over your shoulder like a continental soldier?
Do your ears hang low?

( Repeat fast, slow, quiet and loud!)

For Easter books check here

Easy Easter Egg Collages

Collage Easter Eggs

 


This activity allows children to experience how different materials work with glue and paper. Although simple to adults, children can learn many things about texture, thickness and any other attributes that the chosen materials have. Don’t limit yourself to tissue paper, use ribbon, rice, dried beans or pasta even. Older children can even make patterns !

  1. Gather your materials. I used 2 different thicknesses of paper ( tissue and card stock) , and a number of different ribbons for this egg. Having a small toddler I stayed away from pasta and beans since they can present a chocking hazard when uncooked. For the egg I used card stock, and of course you will need glue.
  2. Cut out a large egg shape out of card stock, or cardboard.
  3. Spread on some white glue.
  4. Start the masterpiece! While your child is placing the materials on the egg you can ask them about what they are doing, ask how the material feels, if it will need a lot or just a little glue to stick on , what color and shape it is… but remember not everything has to be turned into a parent/teacher directed learning experience. If your child thrives on this interaction go for it , but if they thrive on individual creative play, let them take what they need from this activity and follow their lead.
  5. Glue the egg on a large piece of paper if you want for a more finished look.

 

Song!


5 Little Jelly beans.

5 little jelly beans,
I wish I had more,
I ‘ll eat the red one ,
now there are four!
4 little jelly beans,
tasty as can be,
I’ll eat the green one
now there are three!3 little jelly beans,
Only a few,
Ill eat the pink one
now there are two!2 little jelly beans,
eating them is fun,
I’ll eat the blue one,
now there’s only one!
1 little jelly bean,
the last one for me,
I’ll eat the purple one,
I’m happy as can be!


Books!


While traditionally Easter is a Christian celebration, more and more non religious people are celebrating the Easter Bunny with their children. That trend in mind I have only one religious book in my recommendations, the other two are simply bunny themed.

” What is Easter” by Michelle Medlock Adams is a easy to understand book about why people celebrate Easter. She explains that it’s not because of the Easter Bunny or the fun egg hunts either, that the death and resurrection of Jesus is what Christians are celebrating . Great book for those who observe the holiday.

” That’s not my bunny, it’s tail is too fluffy!” by Fiona Watt carries on the theme of the art project , exploring the sense of touch with all different textures. Great for the under 2 crowd!

” Knuffle Bunny” by Mo Willems is hilarious and heartwarming all at the same time. The story is about a lost bunny, and a dad that can’t quite understand what his toddler is trying to “say” to him. Luckily the mom speaks ” toddler” and dad gets to be a hero by reuniting his daughter with her beloved bunny.

Can you dig it ?!

Dig and Find ~ Sensory Activity


**This activity kept my little guy happy for much longer than expected and a huge mess was avoided , although you may want to do this outside or make sure your dust buster is handy.**

  1. Gather your materials. You can use rice, dried beans, or even unpoped popcorn but I am using oatmeal for two reasons, it’s handy and it’s easier to hide things in because it’s not slippery like the others. You will need a container, some scooping and digging utensils and some fun toys to hide.
  2. Pour your oatmeal into the container and hide a toy for your child to find.
  3. Dig it out and repeat! * I couldn’t get any pictures of my son grabbing the toy zebra, he did it so fast once he caught sight of it it was zoooom out of the oatmeal!

* Note about sensory activities: They are messy, but they are so important ! Children under five learn primarily through their senses. By feeling, seeing, smelling and touching during these activities they are learning spatial skills, fine motor skills among others. Also they can be very calm and soothing for kids which is a great thing!

Books!

My last trip to the library was a huge success, these are three great finds that would be great additions to any child’s bookshelf.


” Not Norman” by Kelly Bennet is a story about a little boy and his disappointing pet fish Norman. All great children’s books slip a lesson between the pages and this one is about how our first impressions aren’t always right. Friendships can take a while to grow but once they do they are solid, even with a pet fish named Norman.



” Edwardo the most horriblest boy in the whole world” by John Burningham is a must read for anyone who is in a position of authority among children, it is a poignant look at what happens when you scold and belittle a child and then what the outcome is when you praise. Great Book!

Peek-a-Moo” by Maria Torres Cimarusti is a great and simple book about animal sounds with flaps to lift for toddlers who need a little extra action to keep them interested.