- Gather your materials. You will need some Kosher Salt, food coloring, a bowls for mixing, a fork and a glass jar. I am using a large jar but for kids a great option are baby food jars! You may also want a straw and a funnel.
- Pour some salt in your bowl and add some food coloring.
- Start mixing right away. My toddler loved this but the whole activity is not toddler friendly at all, you will want to do this with school age kids. You will have to help, I had to mix it like I was beating an egg. It takes a minute but it works!
- Mix multiple colors.
- Pour one color into your jar. Shake gently to make level. You can make cool stripes filling the jar like this the whole time. Or…
- You can use a straw to make a tunnel to the bottom and fill with a different color for a cool effect.
- Although I didn’t , you can also add sea shells, sparkles or anything you like.
- Fill all the way, I ran out of colored salt , so I filled the rest with regular salt and tightened the lid. You don’t want any wiggle room or the salt will mix and the design will be ruined.
We eat a lot of cereal at our house, so when I saw both of these boxes waiting to go out to the recycling I started to play with them to see what I could make, I stacked them on each other and my son exclaimed , T ! So that’s exactly what we are going to make , a big T !
- Gather your materials. You will need 2 cereal or similar sized boxes, some wrapping paper or other large pieces of paper,tape ,glue, scissors and some paint and some fun paintbrushes!
- Before sitting your child down , wrap the boxes in the paper , make sure it’s inside out, so they have a blank canvas to paint on. I use old wrapping paper I am sick of but anything will do.
- Start painting. I am having my son paint the boxes with this fun brush . When I have larger projects to paint I try to use novel brushes to keep him interested. Toddlers and young preschoolers are notoriously fickle, one day they love painting , the next it’s a no go. With novel brushes like this one , my chances are good that the activity will be a hit.
- Add a second color. Keep Painting!
- Paint the second box. Feel free to do whatever you like, you can even use markers or cover it in stickers! Let both boxes dry.
- Glue them together Let dry upside down for a few hours, we ran errands, had nap and then it was perfect!
Letter Discovery Box!
The point of a discovery box is to introduce things to your child with a sense of discovery, it makes them feel like they found it. When they pull an object out of the box, ask them what it is, add in that that starts with the letter of the week! Enthusiasm counts, so get excited and they will be too!All you need is a box and some household things. toys that begin with the letter and if you have any magnetic or foam letters grab those too!To make it harder for older kids you can add in things that do not start with the letter of the week and ask them to decide and make two piles!
I’m A Little Tea Pot !
I’m a little tea pot,
short and stout,
here is my handle,
here is my spout!
When I get all steamed up,
hear me shout;
” Tip me over, and pour me out!”
This fishing for letters game was a favorite in my classroom and is really easy to make. Tuck those kids in , grab some scissors and start cutting, by morning you’ll have a fun game to play with your kids!
- Gather your materials. You will need multiple colors of card stock or sturdy construction paper, a marker, scissors, eyelets and an eyelet setter ,or you can also use paper clips!
- Draw a fish to make a template. Make sure the tail is large enough to write a letter on it. Cut it out and use this to trace all the fish.
- Start tracing the fish on your card stock/construction paper. I normally trace one for every two fish.
- Get comfy on your couch, and cut! Layer two or three pieces of paper to make it go faster but be careful , the paper can shift.
- Add a letter on the tail and a smile too. If you are using paper clips add an eye too!
- If you are using the eyelet option, add the eyelet as the eye for each fish. The eyelet should be magnetic, double check though since some are so heavily coated with paint the fishing pole may not pick them up!
- I am using a fishing rod that came with a Melissa and Doug puzzle but you can easily make one with a chop stick, ruler or blunt knitting needle. Add some yarn or ribbon with a strong magnet on the end and you are set!
- Wake your baby ( aren’t they always our babies? ) and show them the new game!
Click here for more Under The Sea themed activities!
- Gather your materials. You will need 2 full pieces of paper ideally one neutral color and one black, some red, green and yellow paper to rip into pieces, some double stick tape or glue, red, yellow and green crayons or markers and something to trace the circles with.
- Trace 3 circles on the neutral piece of paper, the top should be red, middle yellow and bottom green.
- Hand your child the colored paper to rip into small pieces. This isn’t just fun for them, it’s great practice for their fine motor skills!
- Start gluing or taping your small pieces in the correct circles. Younger children may need you to place a few correct color pieces first, but even young toddlers will surprise you with placing the correct color in the correct circle. My son blew me away while we were doing this consistently placing the right color down!
- Cut the extra paper off the sides of the traffic light, and glue on to a black piece of paper, trim and voila you have your very own traffic light!
Red Light Green Light~ An Inside Version
” Cool Cars” by Tony Mitton and Ant Parker is a bright little book that talks about all different types of cars and even a little bit about the rules of the road in a zippy rhyming text!
“Where Do Balloons Go?: An Uplifting Mystery” by Jamie Lee Curtis is a cute book. After being so happily surprised with the previous book I grabbed this one and started reading it to my son. This was too sophisticated for a 2 year old and probably too much after a few other books. It’s a funny book that fantasizes about the life of a balloon after it slips from your hands. I wish I could have read it to a 4 or 5 year old to see their reaction. I liked it but the message that stood out for me was most definitely one for the parent reading it more than for the child. Not that kids wouldn’t be entertained, I am sure they would. The overall message is about letting go, and what parent can’t relate to the anxiety of letting go.
“I Got Two Dogs” by John Lithgow will delight you. The book comes with a CD and I urge you to play it, hearing a book by the author is always amazing, but this song was thoroughly entertaining. As a dog lover who fondly remembers my childhood dog eating all the lasagnas at my first boy girl dinner party , I can relate to the naughty but lovable dogs. The message is about devotion and unconditional love and you don’t have to be a dog lover to get that.
“Carnival of the Animals” by John Lithgow is a book about a little boy who falls asleep on a school trip to the natural history museum. He has wild dreams where people in his life turn into the animals from the museum. This is the perfect example of why I should preview books before handing them to my son. This book isn’t for toddlers, some may like it but the text is long and the illustrations while beautiful and can be scary. They freaked my son out so we closed it and I read it later. The book is written in prose and the vocabulary is advanced , which I love! How are children suppose to expand their vocabularies if we don’t challenge them? That said I would probably not expect a child under 5 to sit through the whole book, although I am sure some eager 3 or 4 year olds would be just fine. I should also note that the book also comes with a CD although mine was missing from my library copy, I will update this post after I have found a copy and listened to it.
“The English Roses” by Madonna is a pretty book, filled with pretty girls with pretty hair and pretty clothes. I’m not sure I like the rest of it. I don’t hate it but I am a little concerned about a few messages that stood out for me. Now as a teacher I have had to defend some books to parents over the years and I think that most books can be spun by the questions the teacher or parent asks and how the discussion after reading goes. This book can be useful with that for sure, and I think many young girls especially would like this book. Here are my reservations though, the plot is about a clique of girls who don’t like a classmate. They don’t like her because she is “perfect” and they are jealous of that. After a rude awakening by a fairy godmother they see she has no mom and does many chores. So they pity her and decide to start being nice to her, in return people start talking about them and they become popular. I guess I was hoping that in the long book that there would be more substance to the lesson. Like people for who they are not because you feel sorry for them, judge people when you know them not by their outsides and I think Madonna trying for that but just missed the mark.