Summer Family Adventures Week 5

Week 5

Looking for a way to organize your summer goals, check out our Summer Family Adventures.  Each day, during the the week, we have an academic goal, life skill or sports activity.  Weekends are reserved for a fun family adventure.

Here are our week 5 goals:

Monday: Life Skill Discovery: Writing Thank you Letters

Tuesday: Aberdeen Beads and Brushes hosts a Weekly Toddler Art lesson for $5.00.  Time to get and create!

Wednesday: Math Fun: Making Rock Candy  page 28 of the book, Kitchen Science Lab for Kids

Thursday: Foaming Slim Page 46 of the Book, Outdoor Science Lab for Kids 

Friday: Sports Day, Family Bike Ride

Family Adventure

Zoo Trip: A quick trip to a local Zoo make for a fun and easy adventure:


Aloha Safari Zoo 

North Carolina Zoo


Chalk Walk & the Art of Playing to Learn

Chalk Walk & The Art of Playing to Learn


Spring is here and between spring rain storms, we are enjoying the warm spring weather and lovely breeze.  Who wants to be stuck indoors learning when they could be out playing scooter, digging in the dirts and exploring nature! With that in mind, our little ones have ventured out doors to play and learn.

After a quick trip to the dollar store were we stocked up on a few containers of sidewalk chalk, we decided to have a good time building learning games on the driveway.  The first round, I created bursts of word families.  Using a hop-along pony our little one formed words and sounded out words as we raced to each finish line.


After the rain washed this particular game away, created a winding shoots and ladders style learning game.  With two pennies, the kids moved forward one space for each head and two for tails. Boxes along the journey had learning activities and exercise ideas for the children to preform.  On this track, they used their scooters to navigate the twists and turns.


Since the rain has now washed this game-board, the three are already planning their next chalk walk. This time they want to create a CandyLand style game with creative magical stops along their journey. This is what they’ve come up with so far:

  • Mud Swamp
  • Magical Room of Potions
  • Candy Flower Garden
  •  Troll Bog

Activities along their path::

  • Rhyming Words
  • Beginning Sounds
  • Rubber band words (stretching word sounds)
  • Simple Math Problems
  • Hopping on one leg
  • Pushups
  • Squats
  • Other Work Outs

Let us know what other creative ideas you’d like us to consider!  Or, do you have a picture of your own chalk walk? We’d love to see!

Serving up Learning

Serving up Learning

Have old plasticware and plastic bowls laying around the house?

Why not use them for a fun learning exercise!

We just happen to have an odd assortment in from our last party. So with a little fun and creative planning we turned those plasticware a lot of fun.

Materials I used:

  • Marker
  • Plastic Bowls
  • Pastic Spoons
  • Play Rolling Pin (& fondant rolling pin for me)
  • plastic letters or letter cookie cutters
  • play dough or cookie dough

Label the spoons with letters, I choose to focus on a few word families and consonants (_ap and _op). Allow the child(ren) to roll out the door and stamp letters.  Also have him/her match the letters to the spoons moving them from one bowl to the next.  Make words with both the spoons and stamped letters.  If you are stamping and baking cookies why not create a fun little picnic treat.

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 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 5

We continue our advent adventures with Day 5. 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 5 Tasks:

Elf in Training

1. Greet at least 5 people and say a kind word to them.

For kids:

  • Say hello to the teachers at school.
  • Greet your friends as they start their day.
  • Say something kind to your brother(s) or sister(s).
  • Say something nice to and about yourself.
  • Wave at the neighbors.

For Adults:

  • Pause in line at the grocery story and give the person ahead or behind you a smile.
  • At work give an greet your co-workers with a positive start.
  • Say something special to your spouse or significant other.
  • Be kind and extra loving to your kids, spend time with them.
  •  Be courteous to the car ahead or behind you.

2. Donate a Toy or Book you no Longer Need

The kids each picked out a couple toys or books to give to charity today.  Goodies will be dropped off this afternoon.


Family Holiday Activity

Read a Holiday Story

This year I grabbed the holiday books off the shelf and wrapped them in 25 bundles, one for each day before Christmas. This worked great until I came downstairs last night to a couple more then a few unwrapped by eager little kids, oops. A couple more days may pass until we get to unwrap again. LOL Do you have a favorite holiday or Christmas story you read every year?  I would sure love to hear it!

Here are some of our favorites:
Auntie Clause by Elise Primavera
Auntie Clause and the Key to Christmas by Elise Primavera
Great Joy by Kate DiCamillo 
The Christmas Sweater by Glenn Beck
The Polar Express by Chris Can Allsburg
The Night Before Christmas Clement C. Moore
img_3779Created with Word Swag
Workout Challenge

5 Pull-Ups


Get your strength on, today is pull-ups!  Need a little more then five pull-ups, try 5 sets of 5 pull ups throughout the day.  Struggling to get your pull-ups in, use a pull-up strap for support or equalizer bars to mimic the movement.

pull-upsImage from

Halloween Preschool Projects

Halloween Preschool Projects

The past several weeks my little preschooler and I have been busy creating, learning and having fun.  From writing books, identifying letters and learning to count, my son has picked the theme and I’ve developed projects to meet his needs.  In this post, I will cover the following:

  • M for Monster

  • H for Halloween Haunted House

  • Bat for -at week

M is for Monster


This little collection has Halloween themed learning with the letter M for Monster which includes a letter M word hunt, a color by numbers, patterns and simple counting page and a fun little maze. For a link to my Etsy page and more Monster activities, click here.

Here are some of the hands-on extra activities I added into the letter M, Monster Week.

Books we read for Monster Week:

There’s a Nightmare in my Closet

Where the Wild Things Are 

Goodnight Little Monster

Go to School Little Monster 


From the 40% off Hobby Lobby special I found a pack of Monster crafts.  We decorated and labeled each monster with a letter from some alphabet work. My little guy spent time putting the letters in order and making words.

With big sister home sick from school Lego blocks came in handy to build a maze for letter M week!

M&Ms for letter M week are sure a fun treat when sorting, counting and graphing.


Letter H for is Halloween Haunted House

Halloween themed learning with H week. Words focus on the letter H. This set includes a mini book, letter hunt, patterns counting, dot to dot and other interactive activities for your preschooler. Contains about 22 pages with 12 pages a mini book. We also purchased a haunted house gingerbread kit to do as a family.  Walmart had them for $7.00 and change (FYI: the icing didn’t work so well to hold the house together so I used hot glue — sorry kids, you won’t be able to eat this candy house). Here is a couple examples of my haunted house activities for more, click on my etsy page.

Books we Read for Haunted House Week:

In a Dark, Dark House

At the Old Haunted House

Room on a Broom 

Halloween Hustle



B for Bat -at week

Halloween themed learning with -at week. Words focus on the at family such as: bat, cat, sat, mat, hat, pat, vat, rat, flat, at, slat, fat. This set includes a mini book, a fun song and rhyme, dot-to-dot, patterns word hunt and other interactive activities for your preschooler or kindergartener. Here are some examples of the projects created for bat week. For more, click on my Etsy page:

Bat Books we have Read

Bats at the Beach

Bats at the Library 

National Geographic Reader: Bats

Bats by Gail Gibbons


(we also found a Reading Rainbow Recording video on Amazon!) Episode 13

Next week we will work with pumpkins so stayed tuned for some fun projects headed your way including sorting and graphing autumn mix candy!


Adventures in Reading

August Home Reading


Get your August Home Reading Here. With the theme, “Adventure in Reading”, make reading fun and meaningful with these educational activity calendars. Fun for all elementary learners, there are three calendars in this set. Pre-K & Kindergarten, enjoy coloring in the adventure themed picture for each day you read. 1st and 2nd grades, enjoy a good book and complete 20 activities then color August Home Reading Page! Grades 3-5 enjoy a calendar filled with fun activities from art to athletic and simple to engaging, complete 20 tasks for 20 days read. Have fun and share your work. Download a digital copy of August Reading Here and head back to school ready to learn.

July Home Reading

July Home Reading



Relax with a Good Book

Get your July Home Reading Here.  With the theme, “Relax with a Good Book”, make reading fun and meaningful with these educational activity calendars. Fun for all elementary learners, there are three calendars in this set. Pre-K & Kindergarten, enjoy coloring in the beach themed picture for each day you read. 1st and 2nd grades, enjoy a good book and complete 20 activities then color July Home Reading Page! Grades 3-5 enjoy a calendar filled with fun activities from art to athletic and simple to engaging, complete 20 tasks for 20 days read. Have fun and share your work.  Download a digital copy of July Reading Here.

June Home Reading

June Home Reading


This Summer, Read S'More Books

Get your June Home Reading Here.  With the theme, “Read S’More Books”, make reading fun and meaningful with these educational activity calendars. Fun for all elementary learners, there are four calendars in this set. Pre-K & Kindergarten, enjoy coloring in the camping themed picture for each day you read. 1st and 2nd grades, enjoy a good book and complete 20 activities then color June Home Reading Page! Grades 3-5 enjoy a calendar filled with fun activities from art to athletic and simple to engaging, complete 20 tasks for 20 days read. Have fun and share your work.  Download a digital copy of June Reading Here.



While I was creating my campsite, my 6 year old drew her own to match. 

Learning on Holiday


This weekend, for my 40th birthday, our family is headed on a grand adventure to Hawaii. The last couple weeks have been spent gathering teaching material and creating fun projects for my 3, 5 and 7 year old children.  In order to make the most of space, I’ve tried to come up with projects that don’t require a lot of storage but still spark creativity. During our trip, I plan to blog about our family learning adventures.  We hope to travel and learn on the go creating a classroom without walls. We are excited about the learning possibilities and adventures we will have with our kids!  Here are some of the projects I’ve created, so far.

Travel Journals 

With the different age levels in mind, I created personalized journals.  Designed not to be to labor intensive, I want the children to be excited and enjoy writing in their logs. For my preschool child, he can circle the type of activity & weather and rate the day.  Then he can draw a simple picture while I write down one sentence about his drawing. For my kindergartener she can also circle the type of activity, weather and rate the date. Additionally there is a space for a picture and sentence prompts for details about each day. For my 2nd grade child, I have the same as the 5 year old but with words rather then emoticons to rate the day.

This year, I bound each of their journals into a fun personal book.  First, I added a blank page to each side of the book.  I then hauled out my sewing machine and stitched one side of the book for a spine. Using a sticky back foam pages, I attached it one to the front and the second to the back to create the cover.  Using patterned duct tape, I reinforced around the outside cover for a finished look. Originally I was just going to tape the spine, however the sticky foam continued have edges that popped up and I figured this would make it easy for children to take the book apart.  So, I ended up taping around each side.

Learning Modules

The teachers are sending home some of the material they are covering in class but this holiday gives me the opportunity come up with create projects and writing prompts for my students. So with that in mind, I created different modules for three children.

1st up is my preschooler.  Found on Mrs. D’s Corner, I absolutely love her morning work binder.  I purchased, downloaded and modified to fit my little one’s needs.  In this binder, I have practice for learning to spell his name, his street address, phone number and understanding weather.  To add to this idea, I designed suitcases that I laminated for all my kids to practice packing according the season, putting the months and days in order and housing their personal information for the velcro sheets.  Towards the back of the binder, I also found some fantastic clip art story boards to use with dry erase markers.

Each of the girls have a binder/folder filled with projects and activities. There is music and movement, a Hawaii Glyph, a short play, reading comprehension for the older and following directions for the younger.  I’ve also included a variety of working with words and language development for each girls designed for their level.  Each girl has a daily activity that I used a few years ago while teaching in Colorado. This one page is chalk filled with daily math uses.  There is number of the day with ten frames, hundred charts, calendar, patters, temperature, clock, analogies and either sentence editing or site word practice.  Then, there is my favorite section, writing lessons.

Writing Projects

During our time away, I have created a variety of writing prompts themed for our time on the island.  There is a prompt for creative stories, procedural writing and comic.  I also created a movie strip from a suitcase to design a picture story.  Each prompt can be used for a variety of levels by offering more or less help when writing stories.  I am also taking a few blank books for when inspiration hits or to save brochures and pictures from the island.


Our evening routine is not complete without story-time.  With that in mind, I looked for island themed books.  Here are some of the Hawaii books we found. Some are on kindle with others are paperback.