Together Counts All Year Long

togetherOne of the fun things I get to do as a blogger is work with great brands and initiatives. One that I have been thrilled to work with for a few years now is Together Counts. You may have seen some of their posters in your child’s school { I just saw one last week when I had to pick my son up from the nurses office… poor guy} and I am always happy to see it. Together Counts is a great program aimed t teaching kids and families about energy balance. Together Counts is about more than energy balance though, Together Counts promotes the family table, being active together, and realistic goals for busy families.

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Our family goals were:

To eat dinner together with no screens and LOTS of fruits and veggies at every meal.  I’d give us an A on that one.

To run or walk a fun run together. I’d give us an F for that one. While I ran many races including 4 half marathons I couldn’t get my kids on board. This year I think I will try to make our move together goal less of what I want to do and something more suited to them!

To take advantage of our yard and be active close to home. Another A. We have played soccer, picked apples, turned over rocks, had races, ran through the sprinkler… we don’t take our big yard for granted!

What goals are you hoping to make this year?

Here are some of the articles I wrote for Together Counts Blog this year in case you missed them :

Sharing Your Childhood Games & Meals With Your Kids
Storytelling Walks
Games You Can Play In A Kiddie Pool
Favorite Fall Family Activities
Black Friday Activities For The Whole Family

 

As stated above I have been working with Together Counts and am compensated by them for the work.

2 in 1 Printable Valentine & Activity Sheet

FREE printable valentine aactivity sheet This is a simple little printable that can be printed as a full page to use as a worksheet or small  ( 5×7) for valentines to give away. You could even pair them with a Valentine’s Day pencil or two for a perfect little package. How easy is that? Of course I’ll probably forget to hand them out in time and end up using them for restaurant waiting games for my kids until the summer. That works but I think you and I should remember to give these out on Valentine’s Day because they really are so cute, easy to print out at home, and FREE.

Print the sheet here ( click on image and print)
valentine printable no candy valentine for kids

I didn’t get all of them printed out before one was already being used!

valentine's day printable

Pom Pom Mittens Craft For Preschool

mitten craft

This fun little winter craft is simple to set up and fun for a wide range of abilities. You can make this a lesson about matching or textures, or you can just grab a hodgepodge of materials and let the kids create with wide open boundaries. I asked my daughter what she wanted to add to mittens and she looked at me like I was asking the dumbest question ever. ” Uh pom poms of course!” I thought that would be a fun contrast between the smooth card stock and the soft squishy pom poms so I raced to get them before she changed her mind. I made my own mittens too because it’s much more fun to create with someone else. I urge you to try to avoid samples to show kids, crafts are limited enough already samples tend to limit children’s creativity even more. I choose to craft along side her adopting some of her ideas into mine to model collaboration from time to time.

Gather your materials. You will need some card stock, yarn, a hole punch, pencil, scissors, white glue, and whatever collage material you are using. I think the pom poms are awfully cute. mitten craft

Start by folding your card stock in half. mitten craft

Next trace or have your child trace their hand. mitten craft

Cut out and voila you have just cut out two mittens. cut out pom pom mitten craft

Decorate. I hadn’t put out any markers or planned to have her draw but this is exactly why I love having all our materials within reach while we craft because she can grab what she wants to use. pom pom mittens craft for wintertime

Time to get the pom poms out and glue. pom pom mittens preschool craft

Add them to the card stock.

Can you tell she is upset in this photo? pom pom mittens countingShe had just counted all the pink pom poms and realized she was one short to have the same number on each mitten. A quick trip to the bathroom ( What? You don’t store extra art supplies under your bathroom sink?) and I was back with a few more pink ones.mitten craft for kids Once they are all glued on let dry. mitten craft for preschool

Punch a hole in each and attach a string. mitten craft for kindergartenI can’t help it I am going to add a warning that you all probably do not need but I can’t help but include. Please please do not allow young children to play with anything with a string like this unsupervised. If your child wants to play with their creations simple skip the string all together. All our activities are meant to be made with adult supervision and involvement. mitten craft for winter theme

Book

All book suggestions include affiliate links.

snow the mitten

The Mitten by Jan Brett is the perfect match for this craft and such a sweet book about a mitten that somehow keeps stretching as more and more animals crawl inside. That is until the bear sneezes! The illustrations are busy in a beautiful way that will have your children finding new things every time you read this book. The really amazing thing about this book is how it appeals to such a range of ages. My classroom of 2 and 3 year olds read this book the same week my son told me his had. He’s 8.

 

45 Valentine’s Day Activities For Preschool

valentine's day activities for preschool My daughter is itching to get our Valentine’s Day crafts from years past out and up on our walls. I told her we need to finish packing up all the Christmas stuff first. We were off to a good start but then the stomach bug hit and we’ve been stalled ever since. As a compromise I have gathered up all our old favorite Valentine’s Day activities for preschool, added some from our favorite blogs and put them all in one place so she ( and all of you) can decide what we are going to make this year.

valentine's day ideas for preschool

Melted Pony Bead Heart Wind Chimes
Cork Love Bugs
Frozen Vinegar Heart Valentine’s Day Science! by Inspiration Laboratories
Heart Sun Catcher for Toddlers
Toilet Paper Roll Heart Stamps from Teach Preschool

valentine's day ideas for preschool

Valentine’s Day Rainbow
Valentine’s Day Truck
Valentine’s Day Yarn Heart from Hands On As We Grow
Heart Memory Game
Air Dry Clay Hearts from Let’s Explore

valentine's day crafts for preschool

Paper Hug
Woven Heart Mobile by The Imagination Tree
Valentine’s Day Discovery Box
Stained Glass Crowns from The Artful Parent
Heart Shaped Pizza

valentine's day ideas for preschool

Mosaic Heart Valentine
Valentine’s Day Tambourine
Valentine’s Day Heart Window by Fun At Home With Kids
Heart Chalkboards
Paper Heart Patterns

preschool valentine's day activities

Playdough Valentine’s Day Bakery
Recycled Paper Hearts
Collage Heart Craft
Valentine’s Day Doily Watercolor Art by Creative With Kids
Heart Bead Wands

preschool valentine's day ideas

Love Potions
Color A Heart Game from Toddler Approved
Heart Sun Catcher
Tie Dye Hearts
Crayon Shaving Heart Art by Buggy and Buddy

valentine's day ideas for preschool

Shake Painted Valentine
Doily Heart Butterflies
Puffy Heart Wreath
H is for Heart
Frozen Heart Recycled Crayons

preschool ideas for valentine's day

Heart Color Match
Heart Butterflies by The Artful Parent
Apple Print Valentines
Heart Bird Feeders
Valentine’s Day Photo Wreath

valentine ideas for preschool

Love Bomb
Marbled Salt Dough Heart from Twodaloo
Marshmallow Heart
No Glue Heart Suncatcher
Heart Garland from Hands On As We Grow

 

Did we miss one of your favorites? If so leave a link in comments to YOUR favorite valentine’s day craft and I’ll be sure to add it to my Valentine’s Day Ideas For Kids & Families Pinterest board!