Thursday, May 26, 2011

Arts & Crafts: Puzzle!

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This one was fun. We made a little puzzle out of one of Little Boy's drawings.

I gave him some cardstock, markers, and stickers, and told him to draw whatever he wanted. So he drew...a ball. I suggested that maybe he'd like to, y'know, color it in. A bunch of white space = not a fun puzzle.

Anyway, then he stuck stickers all over the paper, and I cut it into biggish puzzle pieces. He was really excited about putting it together.

After trying it once, though, he said that it was "too tricky" to get the pieces to fit together. Meaning, the pieces slid around too much. We'll try it again another time, I guess.

Thursday, May 19, 2011


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So, remember this post, when I tried to have Little Boy "write" numbers with cotton balls--and it didn't quite work?

Yeah. So I decided to take a step back with the writing-type activities. I didn't get this one from anywhere in particular; I've seen it lots of places. It's pretty basic. And it was much easier for Little Boy:

That's rice in the tray. You could put pretty much anything in the tray, though--pudding, beans, sand, shaving cream...anyway, I took the magnetic numbers off our front door again, so he could imitate the shapes of the numbers and "write" them in the rice with his finger.

Like I said, this was much easier for him. I've got a couple more activities like this up my sleeve--I hope they'll work as well as this one did.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Art: Painting in the Rain

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Okay, so this one was a little bit of an "oops" on my part.

The idea of this project is to draw a picture with washable markers on heavy paper or cardstock. Then stick it out in the rain for a few minutes, and the colors will run--if you do it right, it turns out really cool.

So I gave Little Boy a piece of cardstock and some markers and told him to draw whatever he wanted.

And now, I want to make a little side note. The picture above is cropped because Little Boy had written his name on the original paper. I don't put Little Boy's real name on my blog, and here's a decent (and scary) explanation of why.

Anyway, I put Little Boy's picture in the rain and...I forgot about it. I only left it out there for twenty minutes or so, but that was way too long.

Oops. Little Boy still thought it was pretty cool, so I guess it wasn't a total bust.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Weirdest Science Project Ever

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These are normal basil seeds. Notice that they are dry. This will be important later.

I read (in The Mailbox, of course) about a cute little science experiment you can do with basil seeds--stick 'em in a bottle full of water, leave them in a sunny window sill, and they'll sprout in a few days. Cool, because then your little tyke can see the roots and the leaves sticking out of the seeds.

And, yeah, that's what happened. We got roots and sprouts within about four days.

But what the magazine did NOT tell me is what happens when you put basil seeds in water. I was seriously weirded out.

Gross, right? I thought something was horribly wrong with my seeds. They kinda look like frog eggs, which is cool, but that's a completely different science lesson and not what I was going for here.

Anyway, I consulted Dr. Google, and sweet Dr. Google assured me that this is normal. In fact, gelatinous basil seeds are a delicacy in some Asian countries.

I had no idea.

So, there ya go. A bizarre, but really cool, science experiment and a little cultural factoid that you can throw in there if you want. Two for the price of one.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Play-Doh Balls

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We don't play with Play-Doh very often. I kind of forget that we have it. So when we do get it out, it's a big occasion.

Little Boy tends to get into a Play-Doh rut. He'll learn how to do something new with it, and then do it over and over again. I don't really mind that, but sometimes we need to shake things up a little.

This time, I tried to teach Little Boy to roll Play-Doh into a ball. See those little wormy-shaped things? Those are the "balls" Little Boy made.

And then we stacked them up, just for the heck of it. Turns out that the wormy-shaped Play-Doh balls were good for sticking into the little spaces in the Play-Doh pile.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Yarn Art

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I got this activity out of some kind of math-for-kids book. Little Boy liked it more than I thought he would.

First, he had to sort a bunch of strands of yarn by length--long, medium and short. He was supposed to put the yarn in the envelopes, but that turned out to be more trouble than it was worth. So he just piled the yarn on top of the envelopes.

And then I gave him a sheet of paper and a bottle of glue and let him go crazy. I didn't give any direction for the gluing--just glue the yarn wherever.

Oh! And this was the first time he's managed to squeeze a bottle of glue and move it around where he wanted it--without having a meltdown because it wasn't working like he wanted it to. So that was a small victory.

It totally looks like modern art. We could sell that for a squillion dollars, I bet.
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