A Rainbow of Fun

A Rainbow of Fun!

 

 

 

A little touch of Easter a flavor of spring. My little preschooler was fascinated by rainbows on this particular day and kept keeping these magical arrays in everything we did. So for a fun extra projects we found this easy science lesson to blend colors to create a rainbow effect. Give it a try for yourself and see what you think!

Rainbow Walking Water Science Experiment 

For our experiment, we set up the cups, added the water, color and then paper towels.  The walking color didn’t magically appear right away so we decided to head to art class. Upon our return the it really did look wonderful!!

While at art class, Jackie, Cayden’s teacher at Aberdeen Bead and Brushes had a variety of projects with rainbow’s as well!  Check out this fun science lesson with jelly beans and skittles!! Tuesday Mornings at 10:00am in Aberdeen, there is toddler art for $5.00. Cayden always has a fun time creating and meeting out with friends! So, if you are in the Sandhills area of Southern Pines/Pinehurst, come and join us!

 

So how do you recreate this rainbow of colors?  Grab a white disposable plate, a bag of skittle or jellybeans and a small cup of water. Line the ring of the plate with your candy, poor a little water and watch the magic happen.  Additionally, Cayden create a chalk egg project that same day!  So much to do so little time!

 

Egg Adventures

Egg Adventures!

How is Easter already next weekend?  Didn’t we just celebrate Christmas?  In the spirit of the holiday, I created a few fun projects for our kids this week.  With each one of our children at different academic levels, I wanted to develop an activity that would address each individual’s needs. Also as a combined family project, I brought back our Christmas Kindness Challenge and revamped it for Easter.

 

Kindness Challenge

Be Grateful, Be Kind, Believe in Kindness

Little toys, tiny trinkets, a coin or maybe a dollar, these are some of the possibilities that fill our kindness challenge eggs. Over the next week, our family will find places around town or even on our spring break travels to place these little gifts of love.  What would you put in your own kindness eggs?

Sight Word and Beginning Letter Challenge

Egg Fun for Four

 

Our four year old this week is working on beginning letters and recognizing site words in preparation for Kindergarten in the fall.  On the outside of each egg is the letter of the word inside. At the $ section of Target I found an egg puzzle. On one side I placed shape stickers and the other number for review.  Story starters are also typed up on other pieces of paper as a fun way to travel.  Open up each egg, read the story starter and create a family story as you drive or fly towards your family adventure.

Motor Skills and Movement Challenge

Eggs & Movement

Our middle girl is working on strengthening her muscles. So for her eggs, we placed a variety of movement exercises to get her up, moving and engaging those muscles in a fun challenge.

 

Stem Questions in Context Challenge

Stem Stories

Our oldest is working hard to master Stem questions in reading context. For her, I typed up a list of questions sent home by the school to use for her story retell.

What Egg Creations do you have planned for your Easter Celebration this year? 

Beanbags, Balls and Boggle

Beanbags, Balls and Boggle

With multiple snow days, running my Rodan+Fields business and sending out query’s for my book, getting back into the swing of preschool has been a challenge.  A little math lesson here a literacy project there, we haven’t been as consistent.  To kickstart the week, I decided to create a few lessons that would engage, entertain and excite my little 4 year old.

 

Yesterday we took a trip to the dollar store for a pack of sports balls and balloons.  Additionally, I dusted off my game of Boggle Jr. and tracked down my bean bag letters & numbers to add to our projects.  Then, once the girls arrived home I adapted the activities to review their math and literacy skills.

 

Looking for some interactive literacy and math practice, here are the activities we generated.




Literacy and Math Review with Beanbags

Preschool

Play toss with the beanbag.  My three year old and I sat on opposite sides of a yoga mat and tossed the beanbag back and forth.  We reviewed phonemic awareness with letter names & sounds, and matched beginning and ending sounds.

Bean Bag Spell: Pratice making words and phonemes with simple three to four letter word combinations.  I usually try and stay with one word family group a day such as -it or -an.  Then we change out letters to make new words.

Pop the word: Just this morning we used up a cereal box of Pops.  So, my four year old and I raced the timer (in the Boggle game) to name as many letters as we could.  As soon as the timer rang, we popped the letters out of the box.

Number Pull.  In a beach bucket I placed numbers 1-10.  We drew a number and counted out chocolate chips to match. Then we practiced writing the number on our Boogie Board.

1st and 3rd Grade

Word Review and Spelling. My 3rd grader practiced spelling her words with the beanbags while my 1st grader helped build and read new words.

Math: Beanbag Multiplication skills were practiced for my 8 year old while the 6 year old focused on fact families (or adding and subtracting three sets of numbers ie: 2,4,6). For example: 2+4=6, 4+2=6, 6-2=4, 6-4=2

Learning with Sports Balls

The sports pack from the dollar store consisted of a football, soccer ball and basket ball.  On the football I wrote common ending words such as: at, an, all, it.  Upon the mini basket ball I wrote three sets of numbers, evenly spaced, on each section. Each hexagon on the mini soccer ball had a letter. Upon reflection, for less confusion, I should have written the vowels on the black pentagons or used a red pen to isolate.

Preschool

Letter Review (Soccer):  Practicing and identifying letters and their sounds, we tossed the ball at each other reading a new letter each time.  We then moved on to identifying words that started and ended with specified letters. We then kicked the ball around the room also naming letters we saw.

Making Words: Tossing the football, we practiced reading the words/common endings. Using the soccer ball, we then added a letter to the common endings to make words.

Grades 1 & 3

Number Review: We took turns tossing the basket ball identifying numbers.  For my oldest, we tossed back and forth for multiplication review. The first player named a number then passed the ball. The next player then said a basic binary operation then read an additional number.  He/she then tossed back the ball for the player to solve the problem.  For my first grader, using mental math: I tossed the basket ball, read the three numbers across and then had her add them together.

Boggle Jr:

Beat the clock to find the correct letter, spell and read the word.  I challenged my preschooler to quickly find the letters before the clock expires, exaggerating and being goofy as we solve the puzzle. He also enjoys playing by himself to review letters and make words.

Polar Express Week

All Aboard the Polar Express!

It’s time for some Christmas fun! Travel with us over the next two weeks and learn about holidays around the world. This holiday themed learning is filled adventure. This set includes a DIY train story, math with more and less, subtracting on 1 less, family activities and more! Plus head over to Venture2Learn.com and follow along as I list helpful books and projects to go along with our Christmas Train Ride! I’ll be adding more holidays around the world next weekend so stay tuned!

Throughout next week, I’ll update this blog post with pictures of my little 4 year old working on some of the creative projects designed especially for preschool learning fun.  Here is a glimpse of the projects created. For the full set, check out my Etsy page.

  

Suggested Books for Polar Express Week

The Polar Express

Holidays Around the World 

Celebrate Christmas 

Christmas Around the World

Christmas Traditions Around the World 

Legend of the Poinsettia 

The Legend of Old Befana

The Night of Las Posadas

The Tomten

Other Activities for Polar Express Week
  • Read The Polar Express the watch the movie. Compare and Contrast them.
  • Prepare a Polar Express party with hot chocolate, cookies and music. Dress the part.
  • Look for a local train ride (locate a a Santa Express, Polar Express ride or just a short little train ride)
  • Research each country, look online and discover what makes each country unique and different.
  • Check out the following website for Christmas celebrations from around the world. Videos from Around the World and this big list of Christmas Traditions Around the World .
  • For our England visit, we will follow these directions on How to make a Christmas Cracker.

 

Elf in Training Day 9

Elf in Training Day 9

img_3785

We continue our advent adventures with Day 9. Click here for a full copy or to print your own advent activities.   The categories we choose for 2017: Family Holiday Activity, Elf in Training and Workout Challenge.

Day 9 Tasks:

Elf in Training 

1. Help Someone With a Chore

See someone that needs an extra hand? Today, reach out and offer some help.  Better yet, observe something that needs to be done, pitch in and help without being asked.

 

chore-help****Elf Challenge 2

It’s time for another Elf Challenge

The Rudolf Workout Race:

  • Hide from the Elves (Hide and Seek)
  • Sneak the bag of cookies from Santa (Walk on tiptoes)
  • Pratice the art of flying (BirdDogs)
  • Leaping off roofs (Squat Jumps)

Adults check out the The Santa Claus Workout video from The Art of Manliness !

Family Holiday Activity

Have a Slumber Party by the Christmas Tree

 Grab a pile of blankets, pillows or sleeping bags; tonight’s activity is a slumber party by the Christmas tree.  Snuggle under twinkling lights as you dream of Christmas adventures and cultivate holiday magic.
img_3838Image Created from WordSwag
Workout Challenge

9 Gator Pushups

Regular pushups are difficult but 9 Gator pushups will really challenge my arms and core.

Elf in Training Day 8

Elf in Training Day 8

img_3784

We continue our advent adventures with Day 8. Click here for a full copy or to print your own advent activities.   The categories we choose for 2017: Family Holiday Activity, Elf in Training and Workout Challenge.

Day 8 Tasks:

Kindness Challenge

1. Make and distribute a blessing bag to a homeless person:

Here are some ideas to include in a blessing bag:

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Tissues
  • Baby Wipes
  • Bandaids
  • Disposable razor
  • Water
  • Nuts
  • Granola Bar
  • Crackers and cheese
  • Socks
  • Comb
  • Deodorant
  • A personal note
  • A list of shelters or food banks in the area

2. Bring Coffee to your Teacher or Co-worker

Who doesn’t love a cup of warm, delightful coffee on a chilly day? Share the love with a cup of coffee.  Don’t have a child in school, splurge on a cup for a friend or coworker. I may head over to the local coffee shop, grab a couple of gift cards and drop them into the teachers boxes unannounced.

img_3729

Family Holiday Activity

Play a Board Game by the Fire

 It’s finally getting chilly down in the south tonight. Who knew having a fireplace in Florida would come in handy. While enjoying the warmth from the fire, we will play a board-game with the family.  With a third, first and preschooler, our top favorite games are:
Quelf Jr. 
img_3825
Workout Challenge

8 TRX Pushups & TRX Inverted Rows

Back to the TRX Straps today with 8 of each exercise.  Take a look at the diagrams to see how we do our pushups and rows.

Elf in Training Day 7

Elf in Training Day 7

img_3783

We continue our advent adventures with Day 7. Click here for a full copy or to print your own advent activities.   The categories we choose for 2017: Family Holiday Activity, Elf in Training and Workout Challenge.

Day 7 Tasks:

Random Acts of Kindness

1. Put Money in the Salvation Army Bucket

Plunk a couple coins in the local Salvation Army Bucket.  Loose change in your car, purse or wallet, it doesn’t have to be much, every little bit helps!

2. Contribute to a Food Drive

This is the season for giving and numerous centers are hosting Food Drives. In fact our girls school is asking for contributions this week.

Family Holiday Activity

Enjoy a Cup of Hot Chocolate

Who doesn’t love to snuggle up with a good book and a mug of rich, milk chocolate?  Cold or hot, we will conclude our day reading, snuggling and enjoy a nice cup of chocolatey goodness.
img_3819
Workout Challenge

7 Reverse Lunges (Right and Left) 7 Squats

Quick and simple, add this leg work onto your normal routine and complete day 7 of the fitness advent.

Images from ChristinaCarlyle.com

Elf in Training Day 6

img_3782

Elf in Training Day 6

We continue our advent adventures with Day 6. Click here for a full copy or to print your own advent activities.   The categories we choose for 2017: Family Holiday Activity, Elf in Training and Workout Challenge.

Day 6 Tasks:

Elf in Training 

1. Leave an anonymous thank you note for a teacher, friend or co-worker.

Has someone made a difference in you or your child’s life?  Leave them a simple thank you.  You can add your name or keep it a secret.  Just remember to give away positive encouragement!

2. Give away an Ornament to a Friend or Stranger

This falls perfect in line with our family holiday activity.  I’ll have the kids make an extra ornament so they can keep one and give one away.

Family Holiday Activity

Make  a Christmas Ornament

For a simple, kid friendly activity, I came up with this adorable ornament.  To make your own repurposed crafty ornaments consider the following materials:
  • Wooden shapes (found at Target or Walmart less then .50 an item
  • Felt shaped ornaments either store bought or cut your own. I found mine at Hobby Lobby 50% off.
  • gems, buttons or holiday stickers
  • glitter
  • glue, fabric glue and hot glue
  • paint

Have children paint the wooden shape and embellish with glitter.  Decorate with buttons, gems or holiday stickers. Use the hot glue gun if the fabric glue or regular glue isn’t holding the ornaments.

Workout Challenge

6 Hanging Abs

Today we add a bit of core strength into our workout with hanging abs.  Using the pull up bar, we hold steady and bring knees to the chest for 1 rep, repeating 6 times. For more core exercises to try with a pull-up bar, check out this blog posting from Redefining Strength . Don’t have a pull-up bar for hanging abs, use two chairs with arm rests or Equalizer Bars.

 

Elf in Training Day 4

img_3766

Elf in Training Day 4

We continue our advent adventures with Day 4. Click here for a full copy or to print your own advent activities.   The categories we choose for 2017: Family Holiday Activity, Random Acts of Kindness and Workout Challenge.

Day 4 Tasks:

Elf in Training

1. Befriend Somone New

  • If you have kids, head out to the park and meet new friends.
  • Say hello to someone waiting in line.
  • Listen to someone’s story.

2. Shake Hands with Someone

  • Pratice your hand shake and greet someone new today with a smile!
Family Holiday Activity

Make a Gift for Your Teacher

This craft took a few days to complete, however kids sure had fun finishing these unique gifts for their teachers today.  Glitter art is easy, fun and inexpensive however a bit time consuming.

Supplies Needed:

  • A Wooden Object
  • Spray Paint (optional)
  • Clear Sealing Spray Paint (optional)
  • Glitter
  • Mod Podge
  • Paint Brush
  • Gems, Beads or Buttons
  • Glue Gun or Crafting Glue

Spray paint your wooden object (any color).  Paint the wooded object with Mod Podge and cover with glitter.  Let the object dry and dust off the extra glitter. Spray with the clear sealing spray to set the glitter.  Decorate with gems, beads or buttons.

img_3767


Workout Challenge

4 TRX Pushups

Suspend your feet with a TRX Strap or on a couch.  Walk out to the pushup position, do one pushup then repeat 3 more times for a total of 4.

trx-pushup

Image from www.shape.com 

Elf in Training Day 3

We continue our advent adventures with Day 3. Click here for a full copy or to print your own advent activities.   The categories we choose for 2017: Family Holiday Activity, Elf in Training and Workout Challenge.

Day 2 Tasks:

Elf in Training

1. Our first fun Challenge!!!

  • Cookie Decorating Contest!!  We purchased gingerbread men at the local store. Today we will pull out icing, candy, and treats to decorate cookies!  Awards will be giving for most creative, delicious and silly.

2. Spend the day being positive without complaining. If you find yourself being critical, find a reason to be grateful.

  • Already this has been put into play today!  Even for my husband and I this goal is a challenge so asking the kids to focus on this task, well, it is fun!  This morning, after a grumbling on who got to call Santa on our communicator, we really had to take a deep breath, try and remain neutral and mediate between our three elves.  As the sparks flew my husband and I listed what we thought was positive about each trainee (even as we personally tried to keep calm, LOL).  The situation was quelled and defused thankfully quickly.  We look forward to what else this task will bring, who knows, maybe dinnertime grumblings?
Family Holiday Activity

Find and Attend a Holiday Craft Fair

‘Tis the season for craft and holiday fairs.  In our local town there are plenty of events to choose from today. Now it’s a matter of choosing!

Festival of Trees

Festival Market Place

Hello December at the Farm

Christmas at the Bryant House

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer the Musical

Holiday Jubilee 

 

Workout Challenge

Three Side Lunges on Each Side

This year I’m adding onto my workout from the previous day. So far I have:

1 minute of plank

2 minutes of jumprope

3 side lunges on each side for proper form check out this illustrated exercise guide.

plankchallengeimg-638x424jump-rope