FAQ : Part II

Frequently Asked Questions!

First of all let me apologize for no getting back to some of you who have commented on the FAQ page, I check it periodically but not as often as I thought! Here are my answers to some more recent questions! If you have a question feel free to email me
[email protected]

Q : Do you have a master list of craft supplies available ?

A: The basics to have on hand are
  • Construction Paper
  • Tissue Paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Markers
  • Crayons
  • Pipe Cleaners
  • Tape
  • Paper Plates
  • Recycled things like cereal boxes, toilet paper rolls etc…

The extras you may also like to have are

  • Sparkles
  • Googly Eyes
  • Sequins
  • Foam Sheets
  • Contact Paper
  • Paint Dobbers
  • Sparkle Paint
  • Ink Pads
  • Rubber Stamps
  • Stickers
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Q: Is there a quick and easy way of finding the best activities for my 2 year old?

A: All of our activities with the exception of ” Naptime Creations” are appropriate to try with toddlers through school age children. You may have to adjust the supplies and your expectations of the final result but your child should be able to do some part of it and learn in the process. I always note when I think a craft is too hard and thus frustrating for toddlers, but you know your child best.

Capatilize on their interests. If they like bugs, check out the bug activities, into fish look for the under the sea ones. Toddlers are notoriously hard to please so by choosing an activity that includes a favorite subject the likely hood that you will have a happy , engaged 2 year old is good.

Remember it’s the process not the product- it’s more important that they love art, love letters and numbers etc.. because they like playing with them instead of being directed by us to do it “right”. Young children learn through play so keep it fun, and just try .

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Q: What do you do with all the finished crafts and artwork?

A: I can’t lie. It gets recycled. Every time we make something it gets put on the kitchen cart until we can show it to Daddy when he comes home. When my husband comes home we go over our day , and show him our creation. Then if my son wants to play with it it may hang around for a while , if not I recycle what I can and toss the rest out. I have saved a few special pieces as mementos too.

Letter of the week letters always get put on the side of the fridge until the next one is made.

However as my son gets older and more attached to his masterpieces we will hang them up on a cork board ,in his room, with the rule of one in , one out. That’s the plan anyway.

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Q : Is your son always in sleepers?

A: You’d think that if all you ever saw were the pictures on my site, no I swear he does have real clothes, and I do dress him in them. We normally do art right after coming down stairs in the morning, I find for him the best time to learn is after nursing before breakfast. We do art then have breakfast- makes it so he is all ready in his booster and I don’t have to wrangle him twice. Also if he gets paint on PJs I don’t mind.


All about Seasons!

Paper Bag Season Sorting


By nature most young children like to sort things, you may have noticed your child lining up blocks, or toy cars, or putting all the dolls in one place, and teddy bears in another. This activity takes that desire to sort and uses it to learn about seasons. This activity seems very bland but I have yet to have a class who didn’t love it.
  1. Gather your materials. You will need some old magazines or catalogs, clothing catalogs work great for this. Scissors, crayons or markers, some construction or card stock paper, and tape or glue. You will need a paper bag for each season you are going to include. I suggest for children just learning about seasons to stick to Winter and Summer only.
  2. Steps 3 and 4 can be done ahead of time or by a parent while the child is doing step 5.
  3. Find pictures in your magazines or catalogs that show people in warm or cold weather clothing. In my experience it is easier for everyone if you do this step a head of time, or even just help things along by ripping out these pages and have the child do the cutting.
  4. Once you have found enough pictures of both seasons, glue or tape them to the paper and cut them out.
  5. Decorate the two ( or more) paper bags with scenes or things that represent that season. I drew pictures. Label each bag with the name of the season.
  6. Sort your pictures into each bag. While sorting ask your child questions, and especially if they are putting something you think should go into Summer into the Winter bag, they may have a very good explanation to put you in your place!
**The subject of this activity can easily be changed to fit any theme, and length of activity lengthened by adding more pictures to sort. This is a great circle time activity for preschool and after playing it as a class you can put it on the shelf for free time and the students will enjoy re-playing it. **


Song!



Hurry, Hurry, Seasons Changing

Hurry, Hurry, Spring is coming
See all the flowers blooming
Hurry , Hurry Spring is coming
Baby animals everywhere!

Hurry, Hurry, Summer’s coming
See how the sun is shining,
Hurry , Hurry, Summer’s coming
At the beach and at the pool!

Hurry, Hurry, Autumn’s coming
See all the leaves falling,
Hurry, Hurry, Autumn’s coming
Grab a sweater it’s getting cold!

Hurry, Hurry, Winter’s coming
See all the snow falling,
Hurry, Hurry Winter’s coming
Bundle up like a polar bear!

Coffee Filter Butterfly



These butterflies are always a hit, with older children you can use food coloring and spend time mixing custom colors, but with young children I would stick to watered down paint. Here how :

  1. Gather your materials. You’ll need at least 2 coffee filters for each butterfly, some cardboard for the body ( I used the backside of a cereal box) some cryons or markers for coloring the body , a pipe cleaner, some paint, glue and if you want a ice cube tray to hold the paint .
  2. Water down your paint, just enough for it to run and be absorbed by the filter. If you are using watercolors you will need a lot of color for it to show up on the filter.
  3. Start painting! The best way to do this is to drop or dribble the paint onto the filter and let it spread naturally. Do as many colors are you want.
  4. While letting the paint dry, color the cardboard for the body, and cut out in a long oval. On one end poke 2 holes and feed a pipe cleaner through for the antennae.
  5. When the filters are dry, fold them in 4 and glue the pointy end to the backside of the body.

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Dig it!
Planting seeds of any kind is a great activity for parents and kids to do together, it’s an on going and a wonderful lesson about responsibility and delayed gratification.I am using a little kitchen herb garden but all you really need is some potting soil, a container, seeds , water and the sun. I would encourage you to do this with your child, but if they are under two or still mouthing a lot of things, plant it at nap time and have them help you water it daily.The fun of this activity is watering daily and seeing if anything has popped through yet. Once it has you can even chart the growth with older children and make predictions about how tall each sprout will get.


 

Bubble Bubble Toil And Trouble!


Bubble
Painting



This is an activity for preschoolers , toddlers will love to watch the bubbles but unless you are aching for bubble solution all over your house, I would skip this with the under 2.5 age group!

  1. Gather your materials. Card stock or Construction Paper will hold up well to the bubbles, some liquid paint, bubble solution and a straw.
  2. Pour some solution into the cup along with some paint. Using the straw mix and blow to make bubbles.
  3. Using your paper cover the cup .
  4. Repeat until your master piece is done!
Additional Activities

For toddlers who are too little to for the bubble painting, there is always bubble catching outside! My little guy loved this , as expected!

Song!


Smile Song

A smile goes a long long way hey hey !
A smile goes a long long way hey hey !
It starts with an s right here ,
and it’s a mile to the other ear,
A smile goes a long long way!

Books!


” Corduroy” by Don Freeman is a children’s classic and one of my favorites from childhood, if you haven’t read it it’s about a little teddy bear and his desire for a real home and a little girl who needs him too!

” Where is baby’s belly button” by Karen Katz is a great little lift the flap book, and it’s like crack for toddlers! I swear I have never met one who doesn’t love this book! And an added bonus it helps them learn their body parts too!


” It’s Mine!” by Leo Lionni is a great fable about sharing and not sharing! A lesson kids of all age especially the young ones can use , often!

The Royal Treatment!

Custom Crowns!


Kids love to dress up, and play make believe and more and more research suggests kids these days aren’t getting enough old fashion play like make believe, so make these crowns and get to it!

  1. Gather your materials. I am using 2 pieces of card stock scissors, glitter, foil star stickers and crayons. You can use glue or even staples to fasten the two pieces together but I am using double stick tape because in my experience no kid wants to wait for their crown to dry!
  1. Have your child young or older decorate the crown with the crayons and stickers. Wait on the sparkles though. *** Please do not let little toddlers play with stickers, they need to be past the things go in the mouth stage for them. They are a choking hazard. I know my guy choked on one a few months ago , so learn from my stupidity and put them on yourself if your children or skip them all together.
  2. After they are done decorating you can put the two pieces together, decorated side down and draw your crown design on the back, and cut it out. The reason I do it this way is that many a crown has ripped while coloring it where there are sharp edges to catch.
  3. Fasten the pieces together, add glitter!
  4. Fit it to your child’s head and fasten the other edges.
Song!


The Grand old Duke of York!

The Grand old Duke of York,
he had 10000 men,
he marched them up to the top of the hill,
and he marched them down again!

When they’re up they’re up,
and when they’re down they’re down,
and when they’re only half way up,
they’re neither up nor down !

* I normally sing this one time fast, then slow then super fast !

Books!

“The Paper Bag Princess” by Robert Munsch is a girl power book about a princess who saves her prince before realizing a crown does not make a prince!
“Where the wild things are “by Maurice Sendak is a classic about imagination and the power of childhood. Max imagines himself the king of his own land!