Where do you get inspiration? 

I get my inspiration from my 3-year-old. I dedicated a wall to McKinley’s art work. It’s been a slow coming master piece. 

 
~g

A Coloring Book Adventure

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My efforts to distract yet another tantrum led to the making of a coloring book.

Backstory
My toddler begs to watch Peppa Pig. So much that one time I made the mistake of making it a reward for taking a nap. And now, sleep = Peppa.

Television was actually something I did not tolerate for over the first year of her life. “No screen time what-so-ever,” I would tell people. But, then life happened.

Taking care of my dad in the end of his life was way more important than being a screen time drill Sargent. And so, she became familiar with Curious George and Peppa Pig.

Birth of a Coloring Book
McKinley starts begging to watch Peppa pig and it’s 10am.

“No Peppa right now,” I say.
“Mama I want Peppa!”
“Later today.” The tantrum slowly begins. “How about we color Peppa instead?” I ask. Diversion complete.
“Yeahhh!!”

Supplies:
•Computer
•Printer paper
•Construction paper
•Stapler
•Marker

Directions:
1. Look on Google images and let them pick out and point to the photos they want to color.
2. Print photos out 5X7 on printer
paper (2 pictures per page).

20131212-002345.jpg3. Stack all printed pages and place a piece of colored construction paper on the bottom.
4. Fold all pages in half together. When you do this, you’ll have a blank page and a coloring page. You can then create stories. (I asked McKinley what she saw and wrote down her words.)

20131212-001844.jpg 5. Staple along the edge.

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20131212-002508.jpgThe great thing about doing this project is it’s quick, easy, and fun! Also, you can make different coloring books as their interests change.

Happy 21 months to McKinley today!

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A “To Do” Craft

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I was looking for a cute way for McKinley to have a visual aid of her chores, and be excited about doing them. (Yes, my 21-month-old helps with chores). Best little helper ever!! Teaching responsibility and allowing toddlers and kids to do things on their own can actually reduce the amount they “act out”, or throw tantrums. They simply enjoy the independence! This also acts as a great craft activity for the kiddos!

Supplies:
*Door knob hangers (you can probably *get from Michaels or JoAnne Fabrics)
*Clothespins
*Paint
*Paintbrush
*Water cup
*Letter stickers

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Directions:
1. Paint 2 door handles (different colors)
2. Paint close pins
3. Let everything dry

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4. Add letter stickers to close pins

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5. Choose different chores for your kids and toddlers. Here is our chore List:
*Dressing (getting dressed)
*Cleaning up (putting toys away)
*Making the bed
*Brushing (hair and teeth)
*Feeding the dogs
*Loading and unloading dishwasher

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6. Let one door hanger be the “To Do” and the other one “Done.”

McKinley had a blast finger painting the clothespins! Since then, everyday she has been excited to do chores (so she can move a clothespin!) I’ve realized too, that the moving of the clothespin is an awesome activity for gross motor skills.

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Curriculum: Poker Chips

Poker is on the agenda this week! Look out! McKinley’s going to be racking in the dough. $$
Category: Math

I was surprised how much McKinley enjoyed this activity. It was extremely easy to create and provided her with a lot of entertainment. While she was having fun putting poker chips in a breadcrumb cylinder, she was learning counting skills, and hand and eye coordination! 

Supplies:

  • Poker chips (quarters would probably work too).
  • Cardboard cylinder (really anything–as long as there is a lid).
  • Scissors

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Directions:
1) Cut a slit in the lid big enough so that the chips can fit through.

2) Put the chips outside the cylinder and have your toddler put the poker chips inside!

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Curriculum: Color Sorting

Curriculum: Color Sorting Activity 
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This is a fun activity to do with your toddler! This exercise helped McKinley learn her colors and it kept her entertained for a solid 20 minutes.  

Category: Sensory 

Supplies: 

  • Cupcake tin pan (any size)
  • Colored foam
  • Small container to hold objects or shapes
  • Scissors

Directions:

1) Take cupcake tin and glue down, or stick on foam color to the bottom.

2) Choose a different color for each cupcake space.

3) Collect different object small enough to fit into cupcake spaces, or cut out different shapes of the colored foam.

4) Place objects in a separate container.

5) Always do a demonstration first.

6) Set container beside cupcake tin and have them sort the colors!

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