Tuesday, December 27, 2011

B is for Blue Bubble Art

We made blue bubble art pictures for letter B week and I have to start this post with a warning that this is a very, very messy project. At least it was when we did it. (You can see the paint splatters all over the table.) We used straws to blow bubbles into a solution and then pressed paper on the top to capture the bubble pattern. 


You can't see the picture as well in the small size, so click on it to see how they turned out. 


 Here's What You Need:
  • Newspaper or plastic garbage bags to cover your work surface
  • Baking dishes like a pie tin or a shallow casserole dish (I tried to use a cookie sheet, but it was too shallow, so I don't suggest it)
  • White paper
  • Plastic straws
  • Bubble solution (store bought or homemade)
  • Paint
Here's What You Do:
  1. Cover your work surface with newspaper or plastic. 
  2. Mix 1/2 c paint into 1 c bubble solution and pour it into your dish.
  3. Submerge your straw into the solution and blow bubbles until they are towering above the rim of the dish. (For younger kids, you can poke a small hole halfway up the straw with a pin to prevent accidental swallowing.)
  4. Gently press your paper onto the bubbles and then lift it up to see your pattern. If needed, repeat with the same paper until the paper is covered to your liking. 
  5. If you want, you can try it with different colors on the same paper. 


Sunday, December 25, 2011

The Gingerbread Man

We had fun talking about gingerbread men and gingerbread houses this holiday season. 

 

We read the gingerbread man book. Then, we made our own running gingerbread men finger puppets. I got the idea from another blogger and liked it so much. 

Here's What You Need:
  • empty cereal boxes
  • crayons
  • hot glue gun
  • scissors
  • gingerbread man cookie cutter
Here's What You Do:
  1. Trace the gingerbread cookie cutter onto the back of a cereal box but make the legs a lot longer and straighter. 
  2. Cut out the gingerbread man.
  3. Cut out two strips about 3/4 inch tall and long enough to fit around your finger.
  4. Hot glue the strips into a rolled tube.
  5. Color your gingerbread man.
  6. Hot glue one circle to the back of each leg to insert your fingers to make it run. Bend the legs and run, run, run as fast as you can!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

B is for Button!

Wow, we did a lot of button activities this week. We did our Corduroy activity found here. 

We also sorted buttons by shape, size, and button holes.


We played button war. Each child started with 15 buttons and then rolled a dice and counted that many buttons onto the table. Whoever had the most buttons got everyone else's buttons. We used a 10 sided dice so that the kids practiced recognizing their numbers at the same time.

The kids also made friendship button and bead bracelets for their teddies before our teddy bear picnic.



Q is for Quick

I'm Quick As a Cricket!

 

After reading this book, we talked about how we have a lot of different emotions and feelings that can affect how we behave. Then, in honor of letter Q week, we tested how quick we can be. The kids each ran around the backyard and I timed how long it took them.


 
Without writing down names, I wrote each time on a piece of paper. Then we ordered the times from least to greatest.We grouped together kids who had the same time. Funny enough, the times were all in order without skipping any numbers. I promise I didn't plan it that way. : ) This was a great opportunity to talk about larger numbers that can sometimes be tricky for little ones.

Q is for Quadrilateral

 A quadrilateral is a shape with 4 sides. We used our pattern blocks to talk about quadrilaterals and we divided the pattern blocks into quadrilaterals and non-quadrilaterals.  I found these awesome pattern block stickers at amazon.com to use for an art project using our blocks.They are especially awesome because they are the exact same size as the actual blocks.
 
The kids made their own pictures using the pattern blocks and then copied the picture onto a paper using the stickers. The kids made (top left in a circle) a flower, a space ship shooting missiles, a flower, a necklace, and a dinosaur. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Here are a few easy things that we did at our Thanksgiving party. 

We wrote 4 things we're thankful for and made our own hand print turkeys. You can't see it very well, but I wrote the 4 things that the kids were thankful for next to each "feather" on the turkey. 
 

We  made turkey snacks using apples, marshmallows, and candy. It works really well to cut the apple in half and cut out the seeds before you start. The first day we did it, I gave each student their own apple and there was a lot that was wasted. So the second day, I gave each child half an apple and it was much better. 
 

Here's What You Need:
  • apple
  • circus peanut candy
  • colored marshmallows
  • toothpicks
  • twizzler nibbles
  • yellow frosting
Here's What You Do:
  1. Pipe eyes and a beak on the circus peanut. Cut a twizzler nibble to the shape of the snood. 
  2. Use frosting to attach snood next to the beak.
  3. Put marshmallows on the toothpicks and stick them into the apple in a feather type pattern.
  4. Use frosting to attach the body to the front of the apple.

Popsicle Stick Puzzles

We made some Popsicle stick puzzles today for Thanksgiving. These could be used for any holiday or occasion or letter, they are really versatile. You just change the picture to fit your needs.

 
They are a lot of fun and it was a good combination of fun and challenge for the kids. They got to make their own puzzle to take home and play with over the break. Want to make your own?

Here's What You Need
  • Jumbo popsicle sticks
  • masking tape
  • picture cut to size
  • permanent glue tape (this was a little bit of a splurge, but it saved so much time and was a lot easier than modge podging the picture to the sticks individually, which is another way to affix them.)
  • Exacto knife
Here's What You Do:
  1. Size your picture so it is a little less wide than the popsicle sticks. Then measure how many popsicle sticks you need to cover the up and down length. 
  2. Tape together the sticks needed to back the picture.
  3. Flip the sticks over and attach the picture by doing two strips of the glue tape like what you did with the masking tape then put your picture on top and press it down.
  4. Have the kids color the picture. The more color they use, the better. If they color the whole picture one color, it makes it harder to put together. I encouraged the kids to color every feather and part of the picture a different color. 
  5. Flip the picture over again and put a couple of layers of cardboard underneath it. Use an exacto knife to cut between the popsicle sticks and through the paper.
  6. Give the pieces back to the kids and let them put the puzzle together!