Monday, September 29, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
One of the cool benefits of a compost pile is sifting through and finding lots of earthworms, studying them, singing about them, fighting over them, crying over them because KID 2 ran away with KID 1's earthworm and dropped it in the grass and now he can't find it and needs to throw the World's Biggest Tantrum, reading about them, and, sweetest of all, making "Worms in Dirt" for dessert!
Get a package of chocolate pudding and prepare according to package directions. Top with crushed chocolate cookies (dirt) and gummy worms crawling out. We even served ours in small pots...it just tastes better that way!
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
His excitement amazes me, since we live in Florida...there is no "fall" in Florida. Just more heat. A little less humidity. If we're lucky. Oh, and hurricanes. Nothing says "fall" like a hurricane, right?
These leaves were stowed in a suitcase in Silver Bay, NY, by my sister-in-law. She hiked into the Adirondack mountains to find the prettiest leaves for KID 1 and KID 2, knowing this little piece of fall would thrill and inspire them.
I'm seeing leaf rubbings in our future. And maybe some fall decorations, hung enthusiastically by a four-year-old in bright orange fishy shorts and long-sleeved jack-o-lantern t-shirt. Now that's style!
Thursday, September 18, 2008
- to the park
- to our church
- to the library
KID 1 loves being the map reader, marking our route before we step out the door, map in hand. Along the way, we make a note of everything we see that starts with "Mm." I will turn our word search into word cards for him to glue corresponding pictures from magazines on the back.
Some "Mm" words we found:
- magnolia seeds
- month (printed on a "Yard of the Month" sign)
- movers (on the side of the moving truck that delivered our piano!)
For more frugal tips and tricks, go here.
Continuing on with our exploration of letter Mm, we tried a new "Mark-Making" art activity: Magnet Painting.
We have a set of Magnetix ($3 at a children's consignment sale) that works perfectly for this activity. I cut some of our easel paper to fit a cookie sheet and taped it in place. If you have strong enough magnets, you could just use the tabletop. KID 1 used two metal balls and two magnetic posts, one for each hand.
He really enjoyed sliding his magnets around the bottom of his tray and watching the effects as the little metal balls rolled through magenta paint.
Special Note: The "stand" for the cookie sheet is actually a tv table turned upside down! Whatever works, right? The links below show three different sizes available in these magnetic building sets. The smaller sets have smaller balls that could be a choking hazard for little ones. Any of these sets would work for this art project, plus add a science toy to your playroom. What a great way to learn cause and effect!
For more tips and tricks, head on over to Works-For-Me Wednesday.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
On Monday, I cut a big, long piece of easel paper and taped it to the floor. I gave both kids their own set of crayons (we used Colorations Silky Sticks, which are soft and glide over the paper).
To prepare them for the activity, I told them to just listen to the music and draw what they feel. I didn't say much more than that, and they didn't really need to know more. After a questioning look from KID 1 (What are we supposed to do?), I reassured him that he would know how to draw the music once he heard it.
The first piece of music I selected for them to "draw" was "Moonlight Sonata," which has lots of repetitions. It's very smooth music, and my 4-year-old really reflected the feel of the music as he drew, using large, sweeping movements of his arm in concentric circles. My toddler tapped, dabbed, and pounded her crayon to the beat, raising her crayon over her head with a flourish as she looked up to see if we were watching.
I tried to melt into the background and just observe, occasionally reminding them with a hand signal to just listen. I didn't want them to feel their art time was a performance, but it sure was fascinating to watch!
The second piece was my husband's choice (he was home from work by then and thoroughly fascinated by this little experiment) and we moved this new mural up to the table so the kids could really move their whole bodies. He chose "Sing, Sing, Sing (With A Swing)" from the Swing Kids soundtrack. Oh, my goodness, it was so funny to watch! And what a difference between the two pieces of art! Fast, jaunty scribbles took up the center of the page as his feet flew beneath him! Watch our video...it's too funny!
Combining our love of art and music really works for us!
Monday, September 15, 2008
Friday, September 12, 2008
Frugal, but fun!
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Adorned with metal hubcaps, radiator caps, car fenders, and hood ornaments, as the name suggests, this building gets much of it's inspiration from a car! If it has anything to do with cars, it works for us!
Happy Works-for-Me Wednesday!
The follow-up: Sculpting was very challenging, but we had so much fun making all sorts of things!
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
We're celebrating the letter "Cc" today by cutting cheese and crunching crackers. We only buy big blocks of cheese here...it's much cheaper and the kids love cutting it themselves!
We conspired to clear the clutter from our yard. And KID 1 is learning about composting in the garden to enrich the soil. We love this because it means less waste!
We also created cookie cutter sandwiches and concocted a fun cooperative art piece using bubble solution and powdered tempera paint.
We'll be making cupcakes later in the week, of course, and I'd love to take the kids to a local candy factory to see how their confections are made. Cool, huh?
Can you tell we're kinda crazy about the letter "Cc" around here?
Any more frugal ideas for us to introduce the letter "Cc" this week?
Here is a brief overview of our basic materials:
LOTS of paper, different sizes
Paint - watercolor palettes, powdered tempera, poster paint, finger paint
Stamps and ink pads
fat writing pencils
How do you organize your materials? Do you limit child access to them? What works for you?