Ball Painting


This activity is super easy to do but will delight your child!
  1. Gather your Materials. For this art activity you will need a ball, I am using a golf ball but if my son was older I’d use a marble or 2! Also a few colors of paint, some paper and a shoe box or shoe box lid.
  2. Place a piece of paper into the box , along with a small amount of paint, then carefully place the ball on the paint.
  3. Tip the box this way and that way and watch the ball “paint” the paper. Younger children will want to catch the ball, so just make sure you are using non toxic paint and a ball big enough not to fit in their mouth.
  4. Repeat with more paint colors!
Song!

Today’s song is the French version of ” If you are happy and you know it” but the literal translation is ” If you love the Sun” . I don’t expect you to sing this exact song with your kids unless you speak French ( in which case ignore my horrible accent ) but I urge you to sing songs in other languages if you know them even if your accent is horrible !


Si tu aimes le soleil!

Si tu aimes le soleil… frappe des mains!
Si tu aimes le soleil ….frappe des mains!
Si tu aimes le soleil, le printemps qui se reveille
Si tu aimes le soleil… frappe des main!

Repeat with:

Tape des peids
Cliques des doights.

Books!

I decided for this “mixed bag” I would focus on one author I love, so today I am showcasing David Shannon! His books make me laugh and every student I have ever read these to has enjoyed his humor and characters too!


” A Bad Case of the Stripes” is about a little girl so worried about impressing others that she keeps changing and looses who she really is. This story is a cautionary tale about being yourself, and NOT being yourself. A great book for older preschoolers and young elementary aged children.

” Duck on a Bike”
is a more than just a story about a duck riding a bike, it’s about trying new things and how if one person dares to do something different they can urge a whole group to change too! This book can be the start of a great dialog between you and your child about trying things that seem impossible!

” No, David!”
is probably David Shannon’s most known book, it it we follow the misadventures of little David and his eventual dicsiplining and hug from his mom! This book is a wonderful gate way into talking about rules with a class, I have successfully used ti as a reminder about rules and why we have them. Kids love watching other kids do naughty things , so this book is always a hit with toddlers on up!

Shape Pizza Craft

This activity is wonderful for all ages, older children can draw their own toppings and to complete the fun you can make your own pizzas for dinner!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some construction paper, markers, scissors and glue. That’s it!
  2. Draw some shape toppings , with younger children stay simple, with older ones the sky is the limit. Don’t forget one big circle for the crust!
  3. Color the toppings- wait to cut them out, the small pieces are too hard to color for little guys!
  4. Color the crust!
  5. While your child is coloring the crust , cut the toppings out.
  6. Grab your glue and start putting those toppings on.
  7. Remember throughout the activity to talk about shapes, colors and all that other fun stuff. As always if that is interfering with your child’s creativity, chill they are learning by doing we don’t always have to be “teaching” !
Book!



” The Princess and The Pizza” by Mary Jane and Herm Auch is really a cute re telling of the classic Princess and the Pea. They have modernized it and made it a little more feminist in the process, exactly my kind of book. The text is a little long for toddlers but my son sat through about half before wanting to go back and look at the illustration of the horse on the first page. The message is sweet, saying that a woman doesn’t need a man or marriage to attain her goals! Beware though it will make you crave pizza!

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!


Shape Sun Catcher Craft



Believe it or not in almost 15 years of doing crafts with kids I had never done this! Thanks to Denise in Florida for the inspiration for this activity!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some contact paper, various colors of tissue paper and scissors.
  2. Cut your tissue paper into all different sizes but keep the shape consistent.
  3. Make your sun catcher by folding a large piece of contact paper so that the front and back piece would be connected by a seam, so for a square I cut out a large rectangle then folded it in two. You can make a triangle by cutting out a square and folding it in two.
  4. Peak back the backing only as far as the seam. You can see in this picture the backing is still on 1/2 of the contact paper.
  5. Stick your shapes on, encourage your child to over lap them, and notice that they make a new color when that happens.
  6. Peel the remaining backing off and seal it onto the other side.
  7. Go catch the spring sun!
Song!



The Shape Song!

Do you know what shape this is?
What shape this is?
What shape this is?

Do you know what shape this is I’m holding in my hand?

Books!

The Greedy Triangle” by Marilyn Burns is a funny story about a triangle who keeps adding more and more sides until he is confused, but your preschooler will be learning all about shapes while fun. The author is a bit of a superstar in the teaching world, I am a huge fan of not only this book but her methods in general. If you are a teacher , especially elementary aged and aren’t familiar with her you should be.

” My Very First Book of Shapes” by Eric Carle is a great introduction into shapes, but won’t loose it’s appeal as your child ages. The book is split so the fun begins when you try to match the shapes! Carle’s distinctive collage illustrations are a delight !


” Flip a shape: Go! “ by Harriet Ziefert will keep busy toddlers interested in all the shapes that are made with a school bus , boat and more! The simplistic and bright illustrations coupled with the movements of the flip a shape, this book will be a hit with your toddler!

Windsocks are not for your feet!

Catch The Wind!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a piece of paper , some crayons or markers, some streamers or tissue paper, some tape or glue, a hole punch and some ribbon.
  2. Have your child color and decorate the paper. Let them have some free creative time, and don’t be shocked if it doesn’t last long. Young kids don’t usually spend a lot of time on drawing, so if you want to keep the activity going, switch up colors by giving them one at a time, remember to name the colors as you do this!
  3. When they are finished , tape or glue some long strips of tissue paper or streamers to the bottom of the paper, on the non decorated side.
  4. Tape, glue or staple the paper into a cylinder.
  5. Punch two holes and thread a ribbon through, knot it.
  6. Hang it up where you can watch it dance in the wind.

Books!

Finding books that had to do with wind was not an easy task, at least not ones that held my interest. However my trusty local library and I succeeded in finding two titles that are worth a read!

” The Very Windy Day” by Elizabeth MacDonald is a funny story about how everyone walking on North, South , East and West streets had their belongings mixed up by the wind! Hats , blankets and even food got passed along from one person to the next in this silly story about a windy day.

” How the Ladies stopped the Wind” by Bruce McMillan is a charming story that is reminiscent of a folk tale, about ladies in Iceland who decide to plant trees to stop the wind. There is some fantastic bits of humor for parents and amazing illustrations! This was a great library find!