Walnut Painting Easy Art For Kids

painting with walnuts for preschoolThis easy art for kids is an exploration of one part art and one part trying a new food. My daughter was never a picky eater as a toddler but lately she has been exerting her control. I am fine with that, kids don’t get to control much and I know the harder you push the deeper they dig in their heels. What I do try to do is find novel ways of introducing new foods. We plant veggies every year, visit the farmer’s market and take our time at the grocery store but we also play with food. It’s not for every family but it works for us.

Gather your materials. You will need a container , some walnuts in the shell, paint, and paper. walnut painting project for kids

Start by exploring the walnuts. We explored the outside noting how they felt and then cracked one open and explored the inside. It didn’t take long before she asked if she could eat it. She did and hated it but the desire to try something new is what I was going for. walnut tasting

Next add the paper into the container and choose some paint colors. walnut shell painting colors

Add the paint to the walnut.walnut shell art

Pop them into the container with the paper and roll it back and forth.walnut shell painting activity for kids While my daughter did this she started off frantically shaking it but then soon became much more controlled. Add more colors as you go. walnut paint activity

We made 3 different paintings before the paint ended up on feet instead. walnut shell paintingPainting inside once the weather turns cold and wet might get interesting with my wee girl who so loves to “hand paint” as she calls it. walnut painting to feet painting

Playdough Kabobs – Preschool Math & Fine Motor

playdough kabobs for kids“It’s just pretend!” is a very common phrase at our house. From my daughter telling us she is eight not three, my son yelling at imaginary troops in the backyard, and even when we set extra place settings for imaginary friends at meals, we do a lot of pretending. Often pretend play is a way for kids to practice being an adult, try on new roles, and do things that are not usually for them. This playdough activity that includes both math and fine motor skills came about because my daughter loves helping me cook dinner, especially when we are having kabobs. She is a master at skewering veggies and will often make patterns. So on a rainy day { get ready for lots of those…} we decided to grab the playdough and pretend we were making dinner and do a little learning along the way.

Gather your materials. You will need Play-Doh, skewers, a bowl, and a cookie sheet.playdough kabobs supplies I was setting up the materials shot when my daughter grabbed my phone and took her own. I don’t think it was too bad! playdoughkid
Start by rolling the playdough into balls. This is great for hand strength which is part handwriting development. playdough kabobs rolling into ballsMake a bowl full – we worked on ours together.playdough kabobs fine motor skills for kids
Next gently thread the playdough balls on. If they stab the playdough too far from the center they will fall off. If they aren’t on well just show your child to give them a squeeze.playdough kabobs for preschool
This activity naturally welcomes counting. After she was done one skewer she laid it on the cookie sheet and counted all the playdough balls.playdough kabobs counting
When she picked up the next skewer I asked if she thought she could make a pattern. So she did. She informed me that it was pink and “orange pink”.playdough kabobs patterning

Simple activities like these tap into so many different kinds of learning as well as creates a space to sit and work on something with your child.playdough kabobs on the baking sheet

 

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Books About Food

 

everybody_cooks_rice

Everybody Cooks Rice  by Norah Dooley is a fantastic book! The book follows a sister who is looking for her brother in their San Francisco neighborhood. As she goes from door to door each neighbor invites her in to eat some of their supper. Everybody is having some sort of rice dish even though they are all from different countries. My 6 year old really enjoyed this book and understood the message well , my 3 year old sat through it no problem too. There are so many future lessons about geography, nutrition, and travel packed in this one little book! Awesome find.

eating the alphabet

Eating the Alphabet: Fruits & Vegetables from A to Z by Lois Ehlert is an alphabet book extraordinaire and perfect for a letter F eek, since it’s all about food!  Wonderful paintings of fruits and vegetables seem ultra simple and it is but somehow the way the author has pieced this simple book together is brilliant. Maybe it’s that children learn about food at the table multiple times a day and feel proud being able to identify not only some of the letters but some of the pictures too! From a teaching standpoint I love that there are both upper and lower case letters on each page! This book will grow with your child, and beware it will also make you hungry.

yum yum dim sum

Yum Yum Dim Sum by Amy Wilson Sanger is a book that makes me crave dumplings something fierce but my daughter seems to like the rhymes and pink and red colors throughout. The book explains in a zippy text all about Dim Sum . It’s a board book targeted to babies it’s really useful to use to teach children about foods they may be unfamiliar with. There is even a little appendix with Chinese words for all the items mentioned in the book like tea, rice and tarts.

 

 
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27 Ways For Kids To Play With Food

I know your mom probably told you not to play with your food but I really think you should. Kids can learn so many great concepts by playing with food as well as become more familiar with new foods and even make dinner time struggles to try new things easier. Here are some of our very favorite ways for kids to play with food .

Ice Cream Taste Test
Salt Art
Yogurt Painting
Wormy Dirt Treats
Rainbow Gelatin Sensory Tub
Emotional Snowmen
Ice Cream Cone Witches Hat
Heart Shaped Pizza
Marshmallow Structures
Letter C Cookies
Paint & Eat Waffles
Worm Painting with Noodles
Mushroom Painting
Marshmallow Rainbow
Garden Vegetable Painting
Banana Ghosts
Apple Print Wreath
Baby’s First Finger Painting with Puree
Homemade Kid’s Meal
Potato Prints
Coffee Grounds Sensory Tub
Pretend Play Grocery Store
Egg Toss
Orange Printing
Turn Dinner into Playtime
Cereal Bracelet
Marshmallow Skull

 

Balanced Meal Match

by Kim

 

We have been talking a lot at our house about vegetables, fruits, and grains. My five year old son is very into healthy eating (he says it will make him a better ninja). To help explain a balanced diet to my three year old I made some felt food. I then decided to remake some felt food to help my toddler learn her colors and color matching. This easy kids craft activity evolved from that and has been a huge hit with all three kids.

You will need a piece of felt in any colors you would like (but be sure to grab a white one), marker, scissors, and glue.

Draw out strips of bacon, a small circle, and a piece of fruit that coordinates with the color you are using. We used blueberries for blue, strawberries for red, green grapes for green, purple grapes for purple, lemon for yellow, grapefruit for pink, and orange slice for orange. Draw all of these things as close together as you can on one side of the felt.

Draw some blobs on the white felt. These are going to be your eggs.

Cut everything out. Older children can easily do this, but my three year old had trouble getting the felt to cut.

Trim the empty side of your felt piece into a rectangle. This will be your plate (or placemat if you want to put a plate on top of it).

Glue on the small colored circles to the white egg pieces as the egg yolks.

We spread out our plates on the table. The girls had a blast yelling the colors out as they placed the plates. We also had to count and make sure there was enough for everyone. ;)

Now match the colored pieces of food to the coordinating plates.

My toddler loved doing this part and would pretend to eat as she placed the food. It was so cute.

There was lots of cheering when we matched up everything.

My three year old and I talked about how eating just an egg probably wouldn’t give her all of the vitamins and energy she needs for her morning. We also talked about the importance of eating a fruit or a vegetable with each meal.

This activity is such a fun way to talk about food, color match, learn colors, work on motor skills, build teamwork, and the felt does make for fun sensory play.

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Kim is a contributing writer for No Time For Flash Cards, a mom to a toddler, a preschooler, and a foster parent, too. She juggles her day by trying out fun activities and crafts with the kids. After all, she is just a big kid herself. See what she has been up to over at Mom Tried It.

 

St. Patrick’s Day Food – Irish Soda Bread

Guest Post By Deirdre Smith

st. patrick's day recipes

I am so excited about sharing on No Time For Flash Cards today. I have been following this blog for along time and love Allison’s ideas. My son  (JDaniel) loves to cook and bake with me. With Saint Patrick’s Day drawing near I thought it would be fun to make Irish Soda Bread. Bread making has always been a challenge for me. The end products are usually too tough because I have over kneaded them. Bread that tastes like a rock or should I say Blarney Stone isn’t good at all.

While searching through recipes online, I found one for Irish Soda Bread that didn’t require any kneading at all just stirring called Amazingly Easy Irish Soda Bread on AllRecipes.com. My son loves to stir. This sounded like a great recipe for us.
It is super easy too. This one just required dumping in ingredients and stirring. We are both really good at that.
Here is the recipe:

Easy Irish Soda Bread

Ingredients:
3 cups of bleached flour ( I used unbleached.)
1 tablespoon of baking powder
1/3 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 egg
2 cups of buttermilk
¼ cup of melted butter
I added:
1 cup of raisins or a dried fruit your children like

Directions:
1. Grease the bottom of a loaf pan and preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
2. Dump in all the dry ingredients.

3. Mix them together.

4. Add the egg and melt butter.

5. Stir until all the ingredients are moist.

6. Add raisins and stir just until they are blended into the mixture.

7. Pour into pan.

8. Bake for one hour.
9. Let it cool overnight.

10. Eat!

 

 

JDaniel4’s Mom spent twenty years teaching children as elementary school teacher in Virginia and South Carolina before becoming a mom. Now her four year old son JDaniel is teaching her to explore the world through his eyes. She hosts a weekly link up called Read.Explore.Learn. that encourages bloggers to share ways they are extending ideas they have read in books with their children through crafts, learning experiences, cooking and more.