My son loves to collect „goodies“ from our neighborhood walks. For our walks, we take along a bag, and I let him collect a few treasures to take home. Once home, we usually spread our treasures out on a table and talk about them, or we create a craft with them.
Today, we collected leaves and talked about the letter “L” in the alphabet. I printed this great little printout, shown above, for the letter L. He colored the printout as we practiced saying the letter “L” and all the words starting with “L”, especially the word leaf. Then we glued our leaves, gathered from our walk, onto the printout. Click here for this free "L" printout.
We LOVE Dr. Seuss. We are reading several Dr. Seuss books weekly with our toddler and to our twins. In celebration of his birthday, the following are some of our favourite free printables and activities that we incorporate into our family in celebration of Dr. Seuss.
Personally, the more I read of Dr. Seuss the wittier I become with rhyming for everyday fun with my son. For example, off the top of my head, yesterday I started singing, “hurry hurry we must hurry, have an appointment we’ve got to scurry. Scurry scurry, can you scurry? Can you hurry? Show mama how we can scurry hurry.” My toddler was rushing around, quickly putting on his tennis shoes, and helping me carry items to the car while laughing all the way.
Or when my toddler thinks it is funny to start jumping on the sofa, I might start saying: “hey bofa on the sofa I do not like for you to hop you must not hop on pop, you must not hop on the sofa bofa, I do not like that, I do not like that a lot”….ideas taken from Dr. Seuss books such as wocket in my pocket and hop on pop
The Hop on Pop book is to this day my favourite book to read. I started reading it to my son at the age of 2 months. When we travelled to Germany, at 5 months, he would sit still the longest when reading that book. At 2 years of age, he was reading and quoting from the book as well.
Here are some free printables to go along with the Hop on Pop book. Good for all ages!
We love this crafty science experiment. So simple, our 2 yr old does it all the time, and he is already starting to understand the concept of carbon dioxide and helium gases.
Small plastic bottle
Take a small plastic bottle, and pour vinegar, via funnel, into the bottle. Fill up around ¼ of the bottle
Take your balloon, use the 2nd funnel that is dry, and pour the baking soda into the balloon. Fill it up ½ way
Put the balloon over the top of the bottle. Don’t let any of the baking soda fall into the bottle until you are ready to inflate the balloon. When you are ready, lift the balloon up, letting the baking soda fall into the bottle.
4. Then just watch as the balloon expands getting bigger and bigger.
5. When finished, take the balloon up, tie and the child can play with the inflated balloon.
6. My husband, loving science and math, also explained the science behind this experiment. We recommend discussing this with your child before and again after. Discuss how the baking soda and vinegar produces a gas, carbon dioxide, and this gas then inflates the balloon. Our child loves balloons and knows that helium makes balloons go up. Let your children know that carbon dioxide inflates the balloons but only helium can make the balloon go up in the air.
Also, here is the formula which my brilliant husband wrote out for us
C2 H4 O2 + NaHCO3= Na+C2H3O2+H2O+CO2
I like the picture to the right. Showing daddy cleaning, after breakfast, before picture taking....looks like he's being touched up for a big film debut!
This is a healthy snack craft along with a really nice cultural lesson and story for teaching your kids the origin of peppermint candy.
My son loves peppermint candy so I implemented a fun way to make peppermint canes healthier so he can eat them all the time. You can make this healthy treat, making either peppermint canes or circles while teaching the story. However, the story goes best with the peppermint cane.
In Germany, origin of the Christmas tree, a German, not a saint, but a very clever man nonetheless, created the peppermint cane as a multifunctional teaching tool about God while also being a decorative for Christmas trees. There are other beliefs and ideas as to the creation of the pepper cane today but along the way it has turned into a four leaf clover, of sorts, for teaching about Christianity. After teaching my son the cultural beginning of the peppermint cane, below is what I also talk about and teach my son.
The shape: J is for Jesus
The shape: Upside down it is the shape of a shepherd’s staff to lead flock
The color: Red & White= Represent Christ’s blood and purity
Red for the blood of Jesus who cleanses our sins white as snow
3 Red Strips: sometimes seen in peppermint canes, like St. Patrick, is used to teach the Holy Trinity: God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit
The hardness: represents the strength of the Church’s foundation.
The flavor: represents the minty aroma of hyssop, an herb spoken about in the Old Testament
Cut up strawberries and bananas (I let my son cut the bananas)
Form the shape of a candy cane or a candy circle
You can see in the picture that I printed up example pictures and then just let my son follow to create on his own. I try to do this as often as possible so my son can bring out his own creative side if he so wishes (click here for bear craft example)
You can print out my “Frog Example” to have the children copy/use as a model
Cut two heart shapes, for the body, from the green construction paper
Cut two round circles, for the eyes, from the white construction paper
Glue the two green hearts together, “upside down”
Glue the googly eyes onto the white circles or put the white circles on the top of the green heart then add the googly eyes
Cute out 4 legs, from the green construction paper. Two long legs and two shorter legs. Glue these legs on the bottom portion of the heart shaped body.
Let the child draw a mouth. You can cut out a red shaped heart, to use as the mouth, or let them draw something.
You can see that my son did the legs differently than the example I gave him. He used the shorter legs as arms pointing up. I love to see his own creativity coming out in crafts as he produces his own spin on something no matter what example/model I set before him.