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Thursday, March 5, 2015

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Kids Book Club + GIVEAWAY ($200+ Value!!)

I am very excited to bring you the 2015 Poppins Book Nook, a kids book club and a fantastic giveaway this month!!




Every month, beginning on March 30th, I (along with about two dozen other bloggers) will share a book that relates to the monthly theme and an activity you can do with your kiddos that relates to the book!  There will always be an awesome related giveaway at Enchanted Homeschooling Mom, the sponsor and creator of the Poppins Book Nook!

This post will have 3 pieces of information that you will want to join in the book club:  the other participating blogs, the monthly theme schedule, and the HUGE giveaway (valued at over $200!)!!

First, Participating Bloggers:

These bloggers will each post an activity and book that relate to the monthly theme on the last Monday of each month.  You're welcome to take a moment to get to know them any time--they have loads of great ideas!



Next, the Monthly Theme Schedule:

This fun schedule is so open to interpretation!  You may find literacy, math, science, or technology posts on any theme!  Pairing the learning and crafting fun with a book makes the experience more memorable for your kiddos.  You could pick up a book on the theme in advance, or wait until the last Monday of the month and round up all the great ideas from the bloggers for that theme!  Either way, here are the topics you can look for this year:




Finally, the HUGE GIVEAWAY!!

To kick off the new year, Enchanted Homeschooling Mom is sponsoring this fantastic reading-themed giveaway!!  Enter by getting to know some of the bloggers!  Remember to read the terms, and good luck!!



Celebrate the New Year with the Take Your Story Time On An Adventure Giveaway! The best way to get to know the Poppins Book Nook is with a fun storybook themed giveaway! So pack up your Mary Poppins inspired carpet bags and take your reading adventures on the go to park, restaurant, museums, and more this year! Entrants for this giveaway will get the chance to win one of (2) prize bundles for the following prizes, with each winner winning one of each:
  • Alice in Wonderland Classic Tale Full-Color Collectible Pop-up Book by Robert Sabuda
  • Monkey Mat Portable Floor with Travel Pouch
  • Pursfection Multi-Purpose Extra Large Collapsible Tote Bag
  • $50 Amazon Gift Card to help you grow your storybook collection
For more information about these great prizes, see below…

Alice in Wonderland Classic Tale Full-Color Collectible Pop-up Book by Robert Sabuda
This book is a family favorite around here and is sure to be fun one for you as well. This book is adapted by Robert Sabuda, but all told in original text. It has 3-D page pictures and touches of foil and other tactile elements that is perfect for children and adults 3 years and older.

Monkey Mat Portable Floor with Travel Pouch
Whether you like to read at the park of the beach or anywhere in between, this 6” x 6” pouch unfolds into a 5’ x 5’ water repellent mat! That is not a miss print either: The 6 inch by 6 inch pouch unfolds into a 5 foot by 5 foot mat! It also come with an easy to use clip so you can easily clip it onto a backpack, diaper bag, stroller, or purse. And it is machine washable too.

Pursfection Multi-Purpose Extra Large Collapsible Tote Bag
Getting everything you need to where you going can be a challenge. The Pursfection Multi-Purpose Extra Large Collapsible Tote Bag makes it fun and simple. You can use it to carry everything you want on your outdoor storybook reading adventure or use it for laundry. This product is just that versatile.

$50 Amazon Gift Card to help you grow your storybook collection
This prize needs little introduction. You can use this $50 Amazon Gift Card on anything you wish and is an easy way to grow your storybook collection too.

Entrants must be 18 years or older and reside in a country that receives U.S. Postal mail. This giveaway is brought to you by the company Enchanted Homeschooling Mom who is owner and founder of the Poppins Book Nook. By entering this giveaway you are also acknowledging that you have read and agree to all of the Prosimple terms & conditions as well as Enchanted Homeschooling Mom's disclosures found here {http://enchantedhomeschoolingmom.org/disclosures/
}.  Just enter the giveaway below to win:













I may share at any of these parties!



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Tuesday, March 3, 2015

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Name Graph for Preschoolers

This Name Graph teaches/reinforces so many concepts and is perfect for preschool groups, classrooms, or families!



We have been doing a lot of name activities, so last time we taught our preschool co-op we made this fantastic name graph!

To prepare, I wrote each letter of each child's name on a small piece of paper.  I also prepared the graph by getting a piece of butcher paper about six feet long, numbering the side (y-axis) from 1-9, and placing letters along the bottom (x-axis).

When I pulled the letters out, we played a memory-style game where they turned over each piece of paper looking for the letters in their name.  Once they collected all the letters in their names, they spelled their names on the carpet.



Then I pulled out the graph.  They were so excited to place their letters on that we had to review taking turns!  I called up each letter on the graph, and the kiddos took turns placing their letters on the  grid.



We had a lot of A's and I's.



Once their letters were all in place, we used our graph-reading skills to talk about the most common letters, which letters only showed up once, and how many times each letter appeared all together.

Finally, everyone pointed to the letter their name starts with!



It was a super fun activity, and could easily be adjusted for a larger classroom or a smaller family!



Do you have a favorite name-learning activity?





I may share at any of these parties!



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Monday, March 2, 2015

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50+ Spring Science Activities

Spring is an exciting time of year for science, exploration, and creativity!



I've collected over 50 spring science activities for you and your kiddos!  You could do one project every "school" day or just pick your favorites!  What do you love most about spring?!!

Also, make sure to read to the end of this post...the Kid Blogger Network has an amazing $500 Spring giveaway for you too!

So, without any more introduction, here are 50+ Spring Science Activities, grouped into the following categories:

Spring Science With Seeds
Spring Science With Flowers
Spring Science With Little Animals
Spring Science With Eggs
Spring Science With Crafts or Art Projects
Spring Science With Rainbows


Spring Science With Seeds:

Germinate a Seed in a Jar at Science Sparks!

Discover the perfect plant to grow with preschoolers at Preschool Powol Packets!

Grow a Cress Caterpillar from Science Sparks!

Watch a bulb grow with Buggy and Buddy!

Learn about 5 excellent plants to grow with kids and an amazing object lesson here!

Grow a Grass Head with Red Ted Art!

Dissect a bean seed with Buggy and Buddy!

Grow a pumpkin in a pumpkin with Life with Moore Babies!

Plant peas with Preschool Powol Packets!


Spring Science With Flowers:

Follow water traveling through a leaf with Buggy and Buddy!

Make Glowing Flowers with Fun at Home With Kids!

Dissect a flower with Gift of Curiosity!

Try making a multi-colored flower with the Artful Parent!


Spring Science With Little Animals:

Make a snail habitat and study snail anatomy with Preschool Powol Packets!

Raise some tadpoles with these tips from Rainy Day Mum!

Study bees with Allternative Learning!

Study worms by making a wormery with We Made That!

Watch ants change colors with this trick at Preschool Powol Packets!

See how Fun at Home With Kids raised Butterflies and learn about Painted Lady Butterflies here!

Create a terrarium with these ideas from A Life in Balance!

Study fungus with The Usual Mayhem!

Learn about Monarchs & plant some Monarch-friendly flowers with us!


Spring Science With Eggs:

Make a "Rubber" Egg with JDaniel4's Mom!

Walk on eggs (without them breaking!) with Preschool Powol Packets!

Dye eggs with this cool "volcano" technique from Toddler Approved!

Find out how to make your egg float at Preschool Powol Packets!

Make fizzing dinosaur eggs (or put little spring chicks in them!) here!

Grow crystals on pipe-cleaner eggs with Preschool Powol Packets!


Spring Science With Crafts or Art Projects:

Use chromatography to make butterflies with Buggy and Buddy!

Learn about the parts of a plant with egg cartons with School Time Snippets!

Make your own watercolor paints from plants with Learn Play Imagine!


Make some Spring Salt artwork from Toddler Approved!

Make Pounded Flower Bookmarks with Rhythm of the Home!

Make Flower Play Dough with Small Potatoes!

Press your flowers with Tinkerlab!

Create perfume with Imagination Soup!


Spring Science With Rainbows:

Check out my Top 10 Rainbow Science Activities (including a Rainbow Volcano!) here!

Experiment with texture & color with Magic Rainbow Foam at Preschool Powol Packets!

Talk about solids & liquids with Rainbow Crayons at Preschool Powol Packets!

Make Rainbow Slime with Little Bins for Little Hands!

Dissolve skittles to make a density column rainbow with Playdough to Plato!




AND...

As I mentioned earlier, dozens of Kid Bloggers are teaming up to bring you a fantastic giveaway: three lucky entrants will receive $500!!



Here are the details and entry form:

Win one of THREE $500 cash prizes directly in your paypal account! This giveaway is open internationally. You must be 18+ years old to enter. Void where prohibited. No purchase necessary. Winners will be notified via email and have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen. Please see detailed terms and conditions below the giveaway for more info. a Rafflecopter giveaway


Also, be sure to check out all these other spectacular spring and Easter-themed collections:




I may share at any of these parties!



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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

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Ice Painting!

Ice Painting is a fun way to experience different textures, color mixing, fine motor practice, and more!!



When I learned about the Painting Challenge at Messy Little Monsters, I was thrilled to join in.  For 35 days, Louise is challenging parents and teachers to paint with their kiddos.  The challenge is to focus on the experience and not worry about making a perfect final product.  I love this philosophy when making art with young children.  There are SO many different ways you can experience painting, and I am thrilled to bring you ice painting today!!

Even ice painting can be done in a variety of ways!  To do it like us, you will need these

Simple Supplies:

* paint
* ice trays (or other molds)
* craft sticks
* water
* paper

Easy How-To:

1.  To prepare your ice paints, put a squirt of paint in the bottom of each ice tray pocket.  I like to use primary colors because they let your kiddos experiment with color mixing while they paint.  You can use regular rectangle shaped ice trays.  We might have used Halloween-themed ice trays because they have been used for other non-food projects already!



Add water to each pocket.



Stir the water and paint together, and place it in the freezer.  After about 1.5 - 2 hours, pull the tray out and place a craft stick in each pocket.  This is definitely optional, but it does make it easier for kiddos to play with the paint when it is done.  Return the tray to the freezer, and let it harden completely.  A few hours should be plenty, but I waited over night because it worked for my schedule.



2.   Pop your ice paints out of the ice trays and give them to your kiddos with some paper.  If they stick, just run warm water over the back of the tray.  This is a wonderful outdoor project in warm weather, but we have had a cold weather week.  So, we just covered the table with butcher paper, and let the kids get busy!  It ended up being the perfect indoor activity too...

They had a fantastic time!


Check out the fine motor exercise!







Color Mixing!




Even with the open-ended nature of the project, we still got a butterfly...


and a comet...


...and a few other "concrete" pictures!  The kids had a great time, and when we were done, we just rolled up the butcher paper and threw the mess away!

Have you ever painted with ice?




This post is part of the Painting Challenge at Messy Little Monsters!  Be sure to stop by and see what other painting ideas you like!








I may share at any of these parties!



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Disney Cars Preschool Party!!

We were selected to host a Disney Cars Preschool Party as a DisneySide Home Celebration!  I have loads of Cars-themed activities and ideas and am so excited to share them with you!!  First, though, a quick FTC disclosure:

I received free products in order to host a Disney Side at Home Celebration.  The opinions expressed here are my own.



Disney has always been able to bring a little magic into any adventure our kids can imagine, and just setting up for our party reminded our kiddos of their adventures at Disney World last fall.  Standing at the party table was magical, and I loved watching my son examine everything while we set up!  He just couldn't help touching!  And guess what...it's all real!!




As our friends arrived, we listened to the Cars soundtrack and let the kiddos play with cars and trucks on our ramps and train table.

Preschoolers have a short attention span, though, so we jumped right into our games!

Cars Themed Preschool Games!!


#1:  Cars Parachute Games!



Parachutes are always a popular activity for our preschoolers, and we tied it into the Cars theme by using a Cars ball!  We played three parachute games:  First, played Keep the Ball: we tossed the ball in the middle of the parachute, and everybody tried to keep it from going over their edge of the parachute while trying to bounce it over someone else's edge!  Next, we played Opposite Races.  Two assigned cars (er..kids!) raced across to each other's places while going under the mushroomed parachute.  So, we counted to three, lifted the parachute high in the air, and then the two kids ran underneath it to switch spots with each other.  Our final parachute game was Waves.  The kiddos took turns (some by themselves and some with a couple friends) sitting in the middle of the parachute while everyone else made waves (or wind) by moving the parachute up and down.  The kids love this game!!  

#2:  Red Light, Green Light!

This game is a classic for a reason...everybody loves it!  The kiddos were all happy to play it over and over until everybody had a chance to be the stoplight.  Play is super easy:  The stoplight stands at one end of the room while everybody else lines up at the opposite end.  The stoplight announces "Green Light" and turns away from everyone else while they all race toward the stoplight.  Then the stoplight announces "Red Light" and faces everyone while the racers quickly stop!  Traditionally, anyone that the stoplight sees moving gets sent back to the start.  Since we had a lot of young players, we skipped the sending-kids-back-to-the-start part of the game because it can get very stressful.  Traditionally, the winner is the first person to reach the stoplight.  In our version, everybody won each time!  The light just kept turning green and red until everyone made it home!  Then, I chose a new stoplight for each round.

#3:  Cars Matching!



We spread a deck of Disney Cars Memory Cards out on a yoga mat.  Older children may enjoy a traditional game of Memory, but I knew our younger crew's attention span would not last that long!  So, after we spread the cards out, we challenged the kiddos to simply find the matches!  They didn't have to take turns, and they even ended up helping each other (love that!!).  Towards the end, we encouraged them to leave the cards face-up because they were having a hard time finding a couple of the matches.  It was nice to have a calmer game to go with the other full-body, high energy, loud games, and the kids were all very happy with the matches they found!


Cars Themed Snacks!


We had a ton of fun making these Car themed snacks!  And the best part: most of them were fruits and veggies...I love a healthy, fun snack!

#1:  Apple Cars



Use apple slices, grapes, and toothpicks to make these cute little racers.  And, in case you wondered, these were the most popular snack...well, except for maybe the cupcakes!




#2:  Rainbow Cupcakes



These were just too much fun to resist making!  Each cupcake had a slightly different design, and making them is very simple!  Click here for detailed instructions!  But you can hardly tell from the outside.  It became a magical surprise when they opened up the cupcakes and saw rainbows!




#3:  Stop Light Sticks


Use celery sticks, cream cheese, and bell peppers to build these stop light sticks!  Add a toothpick on for a post.  We also used a new, cleaned marker lid to cut the circles out of the bell peppers.




#4:  Celery Trucks



Use celery sticks, round crackers (broken in half), peanut butter, and raisins to build these cute little celery trucks!  We even used gluten-free crackers because one of our little friends can't have glucose!


Disney also sent us these little Cars place-mats, and I have to tell you: they are the coolest thing ever!  The kids loved eating on them and then, when they finished, it was super easy to roll them up and clean up the mess!



Finally, as they finished eating, they chose a car to take home...



...and got to play some more!  In addition to the ramps and cars we had out earlier, we also had a special Car Wash Fort (though, to be honest, they used in about a billion ways...it's never just a car wash fort!).  You can also see our Cars ball peeking out!



I had a great time, and I especially knew the kids loved it when I tucked my 4-year old in at the end of the day and he said, "Mom, can we have another Cars party tomorrow?"
Yeah,... Disney = Magic...and we love it!

A huge thank you to Disney Side Home Celebrations for making a magical morning for us!


I received free products in order to host a Disney Side at Home Celebration.  The opinions expressed here are my own.






I may share at any of these parties!



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