Thursday, September 29, 2011

First Sorting

Earlier this month I blogged about a soccer ball drop and I mentioned that I fancied it up, so we could do an extension activity later in the month.  Well, here is our extension activity.  I introduced sorting to the Wee One. 

First I showed her a football and said, "This is a football."  I then showed her a soccer ball and said, "This is a soccer ball."  I repeated it a few times and then showed her the football container and the soccer ball container.  Together, we put in a few footballs in the correct container and a few soccer balls in the correct container.  It was a ambitious activity, but sometimes a little stretch doesn't hurt. 

While she was dropping the balls, I realized that the footballs had to be put in upright.  This also gave her a challenge.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Dessert For Dinner

Okay, it wasn't really dessert, but it could have been dessert because it was that good - BLT Pizza.  Not the most nutritious dinner, but you gotta live a little. 

Ingredients  - Use as much or as little as you would like. 

Pizza dough or pre-made pizza (We used the bread maker pizza dough recipe)
1 onion - diced
2 tomatoes - diced
8 bacon slices (cooked on skillet)
Mozzarella cheese - to taste
Sharp Cheddar - to taste
Monterey Jack - to taste
Mayo about 1/4 cup
Lettuce - shredded
Ranch Dressing

Spread the mayo on the bottom of the pizza crust and add some mozzarella cheese.  Sprinkle on the onions, tomato, and crispy bacon.  Top with the remaining cheese and bake at 425 until bubbly and crust is finished.  After you remove it from the oven add the lettuce and drizzle on ranch dressing. 

Before it was baked.

The finished pie.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Number - O

Recently Ladybug and I were working on initial sounds and when we came to the numbers six and ten, she was stumped.  I realized that we needed to work on number recognition, so we played number bingo or Number - O as I like to call it. 

I wrote the numbers 0-10 and "Free" on stickers and they placed the stickers on their Number - O cards.  After we reviewed the numbers, we played a few games (I did not show them the number cards).  This not only served as fun, but also an assessment.  It was easy for me to see which numbers they were confusing and which ones they just didn't know. 

Mister and Ladybug had to cover their entire card and tell me each number.  Their prize for winning was half a Life Saver.  We play big or go home.

Ladybug was stumped when it came to the six and the nine, so she put the stickers on the Number - O cards and counted. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Two Confessions

Confession 1:  I love my husband, but he is thrifty cheap.  He is so cheap; he has been called the cheapest of the cheap.  Now before you think I am an evil wife, know that he is proud of his cheapness, it has rubbed off on me, and that's not a bad thing.  It means less waste, fewer material possessions and thinking that I can do anything.  I am good enough, smart enough,...

Confession 2:  When I was teenager I would laugh and roll my eyes at my mom for two reasons: rugs and wreaths.  She has always had a new rug and a wreath on her door.  Can you guess who loves wreaths?  If I could I would put a wreath on every door because they are that much fun.  I suppose it's a bit like the circle of life; becoming your parents.

Put confession one and confession two together and you have an attempt at Crafty McCrafterson.  Between Pinterst and ETSY, I have spent a good portion of my time obsessing over wreaths.  Recently, I stumbled on the mother load of wreaths and I had to have one.  It was only $55.  Only $55. 

Now, knowing my husband is beyond thrifty, there is no way he would tell me a $55 is a good deal and in all honesty, I don't blame him.  So, here is my version of the wreath.  I won't bore you with a tutorial since I believe your Googling skills are good, but I think it's pretty cute.  I may have gone a little overboard on the felt flowers (14 to be exact) but once you hot glue them, they are on for good.

Welcome Fall!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Pulling Double Duty

What's better when you take an ordinary object and turn it into a game? It's when two different age groups can use the same thing, but in different and appropriate ways.  That's what happened when I cut a huge hole (bigger than I anticipated, but you know when you are trying to get a straight line and it keeps getting larger and larger and larger...) in a gallon milk jug.

Toddler - The Wee One is inserting cotton balls into the top.  She quickly figured out that she couldn't just drop them in, but had to push.  She loved the big retrieval hole.

By day a fine motor skill activity and by night a hat.

Preschool - Mister and Ladybug did a beanbag toss using the milk jug.  Each beanbag has a number 1-3 and when they made a basket, they put that many counters in their cup.  When we played a few rounds, we counted up how many were in each cup.

I placed the brown mat a few different places, so they would experience success, but it wouldn't be too easy. 

The counters and cups.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Sticky Art

For Ladybug and Mister's first Christmas, they were given First Art : Art Experiences for Toddlers and Twos.  We love this book and have done many of the suggested activities.  Now that Mister and Ladybug are officially preschoolers (pass the tissues), I have passed the book down to the Wee One.  She is only 14 months, but some of the activities are appropriate for her age too. 

I gathered some collage materials and taped down a piece of contact paper.  We started by feeling the sticky contact paper and then I showed her how to stick something onto the paper.  I told her that the pom-pom was sparkly and green.  For each item on the tray I told her the color and another adjective. 

What I found was she really liked the cotton balls.  She liked the way they some of the cotton ball was left behind on the contact paper and the soft ripping sound it made when she pulled them up.  She also liked trying to draw on the contact paper. 

The pom-poms, yarn, foil were left untouched.  The feathers were used to tickle faces.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sports Spectacular - Part 2


The book is long, but the pictures are great. 
Miniatures Letter Match
Initial Sounds
Name writing practice


Pennants - I printed off common sports sayings to decorate and add to the pennants.


Sports number match book.  The numbers are in a pouch attached to the back of the book.  The book is sealed,  so the stickers can't be removed (I get smarter every day).

Friday, September 16, 2011

Bump and Run - Color Mixing

It's probably a good thing we are doing sports this month because my son said, "Mommy I scored a touch down at soccer today!" 

We combined sports and art for this project when we mixed colors using a golf ball.

I had them pick 2 colors for their paper.  I didn't tell them what would happen when they mixed.

Ladybug rolled the golf ball around the tray and was shocked when the colors were mixing.  She said, "Look, it's turning orange!"

We did this three times using all the combinations of color.  Their favorite finished art piece is in the coffee shop. 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Does it get any easier than this?  A paper towel roll covered in paper (because I think it looks better), tapped to a table, and party favor baseballs.  The Wee One doesn't sit for hours playing with this, but keeps coming back to it. 

As an extension, I gave her a basket of balls that fit and didn't fit.  We made a pile of balls that would fit and balls that wouldn't fit.  When I mixed up the piles, she didn't try to use any of the balls that didn't fit.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Soccer Drop

Again I am amazed at all the money I have wasted on toys when I could have spent less a fraction for this toy.  It's a raisin container with a hole cut out of the top.  The balls are $.49 each from Party City or a Party Pack for $5.00 (footballs, basketballs, soccer balls, and baseballs), which I have used for 3 activities already.  I got a little cutesy with stickers, but it's part of a plan a larger plan.

Monday, September 12, 2011

A Day at Java Street Cafe

I was racking my brain to come up with a new dramatic play area.  All the ideas I had come up with were shot down and then Mister had a light bulb moment.  He suggested a coffee shop, so here is our new dramatic play The Java Street Cafe!

Yes, it's crooked and fuzzy, but the camera was just out of batteries.  It was my last shot on the charge.

The art work is Mister and Ladybug's work.  A coffee shop isn't complete without art work.

A new use for the Bumbo type chair - A highchair.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Ball Drop

The muffin tins in my house are rarely used for baking because I can't bake.  Who has time to measure with three kids pulling at your legs and I have realized baking isn't an estimate.  My kids will tell you that baking isn't an estimate, especially after the last time I baked.  So, my muffin tins hold lunches and activities.  Amanda reminded me I needed to use my muffin tin for the Wee One, so here is one of the activities on her shelf for this month.

The Wee One practiced one-to-one correspondence using golf balls and a mini cupcake pan that I found at the Goodwill.
If you are wondering those are in fact Christmas pajamas.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Sports Spectacular - Part 1

Now that Mister and Ladybug have started at the community preschool two days a week I have put out fewer activities right away since I am not sure how our learning will fit in with preschool.  I know I could have kept them home, but it would have been a disservice because they thrive on daily interaction with other kids.  They want to be part of that community and even though I love teaching them, it isn't in their best interest. 

Practical Life

Golf tees into the "green"

"Football" bean pouring


Initial sounds - I P R S


Gohper grab and count.  Mister and Ladybug grab as many as they can and count. 


Michaels $1 sports roller stamp

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Septemeber Sensory Box - Hut, Hut, HIKE!

This sensory box/sensory box is all about football and our Alma mater the GOPHERS!
  • Pinto beans (I thought they looked a little like footballs, but husband informed me I was stretching it.  Don't use kidney beans as uncooked ones can be toxic if swallowed.)
  • Mini footballs
  • Wilton football player cake toppers
  • Megaphones
  • Cowbell (Because who doesn't need more cowbell?)
  • Maroon pom-pom
  • Gold necklaces
  • Gopher cup
  • Spoons
I may add a few more Gopher related items as I find them.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

The Great Babysitter - Ocean Excavation

If you been around the home schooling blogging world you have seen this activity before and for good reason - IT'S WONDERFUL.  I saw this for the first time on Chasing Cheerios and promptly did it with Ladybug and Mister last summer.  It lasted minutes before they abandoned the activity. 

This year, I created the ice excavation for when my mother-in-law would be babysitting.  A few days before she was going to baby sit I froze ocean animals in layers and added food color to two of the layers.

The good news is that they worked on it for an hour.  The bad news is that is was 70 degrees which isn't exactly ice excavating weather.  You can't win them all.
I provided:
  • Brushes
  • Salt
  • Cups
  • Warm water
  • Cool water
  • Turkey baster
  • Mallet
  • Squirt Bottle

Friday, September 2, 2011

Treasure Basket - Rolling Along

For this treasure basket I stared off using a round wicker basket like the ones I have seen suggested, but she wasn't interested.  When I put out her regular basket she immediately sat down to play.  It wasn't broke...

This treasure basket combines the Wee One's favorite activities: rolling (things that roll as expected and things that roll unexpectedly), stacking, and combining, making music, and pouring. 
  • 4 different sizes of cans
  • Wooden maraca
  • 5 Wooden balls (4 unpainted and 1 blue)
  • Play cantaloupe
  • Sensory balls
  • Wooden egg
  • Small glass votive candle holder
  • Plastic cup
  • Wooden peg people
  • Small wooden vase
  • Sparkly blue pom-poms
  • Empty tape roller
  • Hair roller
  • Empty toilet paper roll
  • Kitty in a Keg nesting cups
  • Coffee can

Mister and Ladybug even enjoyed stacking and rolling the objects.