Sunday, August 31, 2008

Wow, I just love ideas! Here are just a few I've borrowed and use with my daughter...

  • Playdough Math Skills: (See picture below).

  • Letter and number feely bag:You will need something to use as a "feely" bag (it should be something the children can not see through) and magnetic letters and numbers. Basically children put their hand in the bag and try to guess what it is from feeling.

  • Finger painting bags: You will need sandwhich size zip lock bags (the kind that you snap together ... not the zipper kind) and finger paint. Open zip lock bags and put between 1/2 to 1/3 cup of finger paint in each bag. Lay bag flat and smooth finger paint flat in bag (this pushes the air out).... making sure not to get too close to the opening of the bag. Close zip lock bag making sure that it is close all the way across the top. Children use their finger to draw and write on the top of the bag. They can erase what they made by smoothing out the fingerpaint in the bag. Be sure to tell the children that the bags are not to be opened otherwise the finger paint will come out of the bag.
  • Shaving creme writing: I put a mound of shaving cream on each tray and let the children smooth the shaving cream all over the cookie sheet. They love the feeling of the shaving cream (be sure to tell the children not to touch their face or put mouth with their hands once they have shaving cream on them) and I let them free play with it for a while. Later the children each took turns calling out a letter ... number ... shape .... word ... that they wanted everyone to write in the shaving cream.
  • Discovery Bottles: 1) Ocean: To make the ocean bottle I filled the bottle with half water and half baby oil. I then added 5 drops of blue food coloring. The water and oil stay separate in the bottle giving the liquid an ocean wave effect when the bottle is tipped sided to side. 2)To make the slow motion confetti bottle I filled the one fourth of the bottle with confetti and filled the rest of the bottle with clear corn syrup. The confetti pieces move very slowly through the bottle. FOR ALL DISCOVERY BOTTLES SEAL WITH HOT GLUE GUN.
  • Music Instruments: 1)Rhythm sticks-I purchased wood dowels from Wal-Mart for 94 cents each (you can get them in craft stores as well). The dowels are three feet in length and come in various circumferences .... I recommend the 1/2 inch size. I cut the dowels to 13 inches in length and sanded the ends so that they were smooth and then painted the dowels with various colors of acrylic paint. 2)I purchased Hefty Serve 'n' Store Interlocking Large Plates (they are not paper but rather a plastic type material). A package of 16 plates cost around 2.36 at Wal-Mart. You will also need jingle bells (found in the craft section). I put six jingle bells in one of the plates and then put glue around the edge of the plate. I took another plate and turned it upside down and pressed it onto the other plate. The plates themselves fit together really nice. I let the glue dry and then carefully punched wholes around the edge of the plate and tied ribbons on to the plate. I also painted the plate top and bottom with acrylic paint.3)You will need empty pringles cans that have been wiped out with paper towels. You will also need rice and dried beans (I used a 12 bean soup mix bag that has different sizes of beans in it). I poured a little of the bean mix in the pringles can and then added a little rice. I replaced the cover of the can and held on to both ends while turning the can up an down and added more rice until the can made the sound that I wanted. I then cut a piece of tin foil a little bit larger than the opening of the can and glued it over the can opening and then glued the can cover over the tin foil. I covered the can in construction paper and decorated it.
  • Play dough counting cards and play dough alphabet cards. On the counting cards the children put the number of balls the number card represents. On alphabet cards, the children use play dough to make the letter on the card.
  • Alphabet folders: You'll need 26 folders and inside each one glue pictures of items that begin with the letter of that particular folder. For example to the letter Aa folder you would glue pictures of things that begin with the letter A.
  • Matching Sticks are very easy and inexpensive to make and they can be used for many developing skills. You will need craft sticks (these can be found in any crafts store) ... white paint ... and markers. The first step is to paint the craft sticks white and let them dry ... then use a marker to write on the skills you are working on.
    We use these for letters... colors ... shapes ... numbers ... sight words ... addition ... name recognition etc. Children are given the sticks to match and they can sit on the floor or at the table and match the sticks together. You can also but velcro on the back and use on a felt board or magnets and use on a magnet board.
  • Pom Pom counting book: You will need to buy pom poms and velcro self-adhesive dots. You can download the pom pom counting book template here. Print the book pages on cardstock paper and laminate. Bind the book together. Put velcro dots on the circles of each page and on pom poms. Children put the correct number of pom poms on each page. We do one page a time and then remove the pom poms before going on to a new page.
  • Pom Pom Alphabet Book: The Pom Pom Alphabet Book is made the same way as the pom pom counting book pictured above.You can download the Pom Pom Alphabet Book template here. Print the book pages on cardstock paper and laminate. Bind the book together. Put velcro dots on the circles of each page and on pom poms. Children put a pom pom on the blank circles of the letter. This activity is great for fine motor skill development as well as letter identification. We do one page a time and then remove the pom poms before going on to a new page.
  • Make your own lacing beads: You can make your own lacing beads using a super easy clay recipe. You will need:
    1 cup of salt1 cup of corn starch1 1/2 cups of flour1 cup of water (added in small increments)
    You will also need:
    plastic straws wax papercookie sheetstempera paintpaint brushes
    You will start by putting the salt ... flour .... and cornstarch in a bowl. Add small amounts of water to the mixture until you are able to knead the dough into a ball. You need to be careful with the amount of water you put in ... too much will make it to sticky and too little will make it dry and crack. It is important that you advise children that this is not a dough for eating.
    After you have the dough in the right consistency break off small pieces and roll into balls. Place the dough balls on a cookie sheet that has been lined with wax paper. Push a straw into the center of each dough ball making sure the straw goes through to the other side. Let dry (the time it will take to dry the beads depends on the size of the beads ... usually 48-72 hours). You will need to flip the bead over periodically so both the top and the bottom of the beads get exposed to air.
    Once the beads are dry you can paint them with tempera paint. Paint one side at a time and let dry. You can string the beads with laces ... or use them for sorting and making patterns. Use your imagination and have fun!!
  • Sensory Tub: If you are not lucky enough to have a large sensory tub (sand and water table) in you early learning environment you can make your own individual sensory tubs using dish pans. Children develop fine motor skills ... muscle control ... as well as social and cognitive skills. Some things you can include in a sensory tub include:
    SandWaterNoodlesRiceShaving CreamCotton BallsFeathersToy CarsSmall Toy AnimalsYou will also need things that can be used for measuring ... pouring ... and digging. The possibilities are really endless!!
  • Pipe cleaner bead lacing: Simply lace beads onto a pipe cleaner.
  • Cereal box puzzles: for the younger children I cut them in to 4-8 even sized pieces. I then stored the puzzle pieces in zip lock bags.
  • She has so many wonderful free downloads. She has different ones for every holiday and season. Look under free printables.
  • Winter sensory table: Instant Potato Flakes ,Cotton Balls. Shaving Cream With Glitter ,Snow.Cars and trucks can be added to drive around in the “snow”.
    Packing peanuts are great for a January sensory table. It's pretend
    snow.We get a piece of the foam insulation cut to fit the top of your
    sensory table (I cut mine to fit snugly in the top so it rests inside the table
    but only on the top) and cut two holes in it about 5 or 6 inches round then
    cover all the foam with foil put magnetic fish in the table place the foam ice
    on top and magnetic poles and let them ice fish.
  • She even has flash learning!!!!

Anyway this is a wonderful site you can get lost in for hours!


mrs.mommyy said...

wow, nice ideas and thnks for the fun playtime ideas