Best of 2008 Count down ! #7

Bubble Wrap
Corn !

This was out 7th most voted for activity- although we did it for Thanksgiving , you can use white paper and yellow paint and do it any time for the year while learning about food! Don’t forget to check back tomorrow to see what’s next on our countdown!

Also corn is one of the symbols of Kwanzaa, it symbolizes the children and their future. I am still learning about Kwanzaa and will have more activities in future years. If you have one you want to share please feel free to leave a comment and share the link!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need 2 pieces of paper, a crayon, paint, a piece of bubble wrap, a paint brush, glue and scissors.
  2. Draw 2 ears of corn on a yellow or white piece of construction paper.
  3. Mix some paint on a plate, and dip the bubble wrap in it, I blotted it in paper towel first. This was as much as my son would do with the wrap, right after I took this picture I got told ” No , no brush, pease” .
  4. If your child likes bubble wrap have them press the bubble wrap on their corn. My son used a paint brush instead. I did a bubble wrap one though, so you can see the results below ! Let the corn dry.
  5. When your child is painting with bubble wrap or a brush, draw some husks on the 2nd piece of paper.
  6. Have your child paint it brown with a paint brush, as you can see my son was all over this step! Let everything dry.
  7. Cut out the corn – you can see that as cool as the bubble print corn is the one my son made is just as wonderful, so don’t stress if your child goes “off book” it’s all good! It looks almost like he used the wrap in places but it was all dotting with the brush.
  8. Cut out the husks, if your child can use scissors let them do the cutting, and glue to the top of the corn.

Recycled Christmas Tree

I love this craft, I have done it over the years with kids ranging from 3 – 13 and although he needed help and skipped the star my son (who is 2)loved it too. This is a great project when you have a wide range of abilities because it’s easily adjusted. For older kids have them add on ornaments or a Christmas message cut from the catalog’s text.

  1. You will need a brown grocery bag, some catalogs you are trying not to order things from, scissors, glue and a marker.
  2. Start looking through the catalog for green things, you want them to vary, it’s what makes the collage so cool. Cut them out. I have done this with 4&5 year olds and I would rip out pages that had green on them before starting the activity, and they would cut out the actual picture. Older kids can search for the pages themselves. Toddlers will may get very frustrated very fast, so do this step for them, or be prepared to do it with them.
  3. Draw or have your child draw the outline of a Christmas tree.
  4. Have your child color the tree- skip this step with kids that will be able to cover the whole tree, this fills in the gaps well with the little guys though, and they have fun!
  5. Grab that glue, no need to be exact !
  6. Start putting the cut out green pieces on the tree. Show little ones that you want the green side facing out, but if they object, I would let it be. If you are using this as a color lesson just label the color that is showing saying something like ” Oh wow your tree is purple”.
  7. Keep adding glue,and pieces of catalog. Don’t worry if all the corners are glued down, they will roll up and give the tree some texture. If you have a toddler help them with this step, once my son saw that I was popping the catalog cut pieces on anywhere he started adding one after another.Also the lines are just guides , if your collage goes over it that’s fine , you will cut it out in a later step. Let dry.
  8. These next steps I did myself, at this point my son has had enough and was off to play. Draw a star in the corner.Find gold and yellow pictures in your catalog and cut out.Glue onto the star shape. Let dry
  9. Cut both the tree and the star out .
  10. Glue the star on the top of the tree and voila!

Coffee Filter Angel Craft For Kids

 

angel craft

Since getting a Little People Manger for his birthday my son has been very into angels, so we made a sweet little angel craft for kids with a coffee filter for the wings! To make it even more celestial you can add some gold foil stars to the black paper!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need 2 full pieces of construction paper( one white, other any color), a pipe cleaner, sparkle paint, 2 coffee filters, 2 scrap pieces of blue and red paper, a marker, and glue.
  2. Start by drawing a key hole shape on the white construction paper.
  3. Using the sparkle paint , paint the angel’s body, let dry.
  4. Paint the coffee filters.
  5. While your child is painting cut out a small red mouth and 2 eyes, I drew closed eyes with lashes, but googly eyes would work too.
  6. Glue the eyes and mouth on.
  7. While your child is gluing make a halo out of the pipe cleaner.
  8. Glue the wings to the 2nd piece of paper
  9. Tape the pipe cleaner to the 2nd piece of construction paper.
  10. Cut out the dry angel body and glue it to the paper over the pipe cleaner.

Books!
For the full round up of
Christmas Book Reviews
click here

 

Holiday Gift Showcase

Picture Books
I started my Holiday Gift Showcase with gifts inspired by children’s books so I think it’s fitting that I would wrap it up with a list of wonderful books that would make great last minute gifts.

” The Very Grouchy Ladybug” by Eric Carle is more than a cute book about a crabby bug. The Lady bug is looking for a fight and each hour she finds a bigger and bigger animal to fight with until she is unintentionally slapped by a big whale’s tail! I loved using this book to teach telling time, as there is a picture of an analog clock on each page. I would use a play clock and as I read each page ask one child to come and set our classroom clock. Also don’t be put off by the fact that the lady bug tries to pick fights, no animal takes her up on her offer and you can spin that into a great lesson about not giving into people who are trying to pick fights.

Sink or Swim “ by Valerie Coulman is my new favorite book, it’s about a cow who is determined to learn how to swim. He seeks out advice, gets all the equipment and never gives up! The story is a wonderful lesson about tenacity in the face of adversity . The cow just keeps trying!


” Alphabet Under Construction”
by Denise Fleming is a wonderful example of what an alphabet book should be. Perfect for toddlers and preschoolers learning their first letters, the text is short , the letters are front and center and the illustrations are fun and interesting. My son loves this book, I grabbed it at the library after remembering how much my Pre K class loved it too! Many alphabet books are too long to read entirety at circle time or in one shot with a toddler but this my 19 month old will sit through Z every time!

” Dig Dig Digging” by Margaret Mayo was an instant favorite as soon as my son opened it last night. I bought it without pre reading it at all , hoping that just the fact there was a digger on the front my son would love it. The book is so much better than I expected. It goes through all different types of vehicles, not just diggers and the text uses a repetitive format that kids love. The best part is the opening line of each page where is says what each vehicle is good at. ” Diggers are good at dig dig digging!” ” Tractors are good at pull pull pulling!” are just two of the many. I love this because it had my son trying to say it and by the 3rd reading he was saying it along with me. Great book for toddlers and preschoolers!





” I Love You, Stinky Face” by Lisa McCourt reminds me of “The Runaway Bunny” but less saccharine and creepy. Sorry if I have just called your favorite book creepy but I’ve never been a fan of “The Runaway Bunny”. Back to this book and why I like it, I love that the little boy in the book keeps trying to find ways to make him unlovable and the mom keeps finding ways to love unconditionally. There is a deeper meaning here and moms will see past the fun illustrations to the real heart of this book, which is no matter what we love our children. When I found this in a thrift store and read it quickly, I couldn’t look at my son in his stroller throwing puffs on the floor without tearing up!

Freckleface Strawberry” by Julianne Moore is one of the few celebrity books you will see me giving a good review, I really like this book. It doesn’t talk down to kids, and the humor is funny for parents and kids alike. I like that her freckles do not go away as she got older too, instead she learns to accept and love them.

“The Paper Bag Princess” by Robert Munsch is one of my very favorite books. Some parents have shared their dislike of Elizabeth’s outburst at the end calling Ronald a bum but I think not only is it justified, he treated her horribly, but people say things when they are angry and you can easily use it to teach your child about anger. I think it’s a wonderful story about a princess taking things into her own hands and saving herself and the prince! My kind of fairytale.

” The Family Book” by Todd Parr is a book that doesn’t give readers a narrow definition of family , it doesn’t say that your family has to look a certain way, or be the same as your neighbors. As a teacher I really appreciated the matter of fact way it embraced diversity. Kids see that families are not all like theirs and it’s important to validate the truth while recognizing that while they may not all look alike, all families are made with love. Great book , cute illustrations and children love it.


” How to Make an Apple Pie and see the world”
by Marjorie Priceman cost be a total of 15 cents! It is worth so much more than that. This book is a gem! Perfect for older preschoolers who are getting a sense of the world beyond their own home and city, this book takes you on a ride around the world! You follow the little girl to Italy, France , Sri Lanka, England, Jamaica and back to Vermont! This wonderful book takes such a simple idea of searching for ingredients and blows it into a wonderful global adventure!

” Truck Driver Tom “ by Monica Wellington is one of my son’s picks. The story is simple, Tom and his puppy drive produce from the farm to the market and see the country side and much more along the way. The best part of this book are the fun bright and detailed illustrations, there is a wide variety of trucks, cars , emergency and construction vehicles! Also it’s a great lesson about how our food gets from the farm to us