Pretend Play – DIY – Magic Mirror

100_6437Cut out some cardboard in the shape of a hand mirror. Cut out some aluminum foil in the size and shape that will fit the cardboard cut-outs. I used a glue stick to adhere the foil to the cardboard, and it worked really well to smooth down the foil.

I think these magic mirrors could be made a lot better than I did here. I didn’t have good scissors to cut the cardboard so they are far from perfect. A box knife would work a lot better! They also could be decorated with stickers, glitter, and painted for another project.

100_6438All-in-all they were fun for my 5-year-old and almost 3-year-old. They pretended the mirrors were the magic mirrors from the movie Beauty and the Beast.

Anyway, It beats having to supervise them with real mirrors. Of course, it doesn’t work as a real mirror but it’s still fun for pretend… and it’s basically free to make if you already have the materials on hand!

Simple preschool activities you can do right now

I’m back to blogging again after taking a break for a year. In that time I had my third child! I want to continue where I left off with posting DIY and other preschool activities that I am doing with my children. My inspiration and ideas come mostly from around the web (all the great parenting blogs out there and Pinterest) and other parenting resources. I wrote more about this in my About Me section that you can find at the top of my webpage. Thanks and would love to have you follow along and hear other ideas!

100_5563Play with beads. Fill them up. Pour them out. Toddlers love this but require 100% supervision.

100_5367 100_5361Dip toy cars in water and make water tracks across colored construction paper. You don’t need very much water so even if it spills it’s not a big deal.

100_5319Use Q-tips for painting. Great for tracing letters.

100_5383Thread pipe cleaners into small holes.

~More to come~

DIY Recycled Jumbo Crayons

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So, I’ve seen this melting of the broken and forgotten crayons lots of places, and I finally tried it out myself. Actually, I stole the directions from this lady’s blog: http://www.imagineourlife.com/ Her blog has tons of awesome free quiet book patterns as well!

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For the nice round shape of the crayons I just used a regular muffin tin.

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My almost-four-year-old helped me sort the colors into the muffin tin, and after they were finished she loved coloring with them.

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But most of all, both of my daughters loved stacking them over and over, and hiding them around the house like buried treasure. Lots of fun and worth the effort… not to mention SO EASY. I also feel good about using up all of our broken crayons.

 

No Mess Baby and Toddler “Painting”

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Here’s an activity that you can do right now! Whip out some light colored construction paper (I’ve used tan) and a paintbrush and some water. Have your baby “paint” away.

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My daughter is 17 months old and she loves this activity.

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Yes, sometimes she just likes dumping out the water…

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And then this activity turns into table washing, too!

This activity is great for improving fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and just plain fun. A little goes a long way!

 

 

Fun-For-All DIY Bookmarks

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DIY Bookmarks!

For this fun little project I actually recycled some cardstock scraps. Initially, I had been cutting out random preschool printables and almost threw away the scraps, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it! I’m glad I didn’t, too, because my daughter absolutely loved making these bookmarks.

First, we color and drew on strips of the cardstock (as you can see below):

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Afterwards, I had her punch holes at the top of each bookmark, and she loved it:

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And finally, we cut strips of yarn and tied them through the holes! Here’s a few examples of my daughter’s bookmark creations:

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This DIY bookmark craft project turned out to be a winner. It was super fun, didn’t cost us a thing (because we recycled paper and had the rest of the materials already), and the bookmarks will make fantastic gifts (not to mention they will make fantastic bookmarks). 😉

 

 

 

 

do-it-yourself Montessori “metal” insets

metal insets

What metal insets looks like ^

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Found this frame matte laying around, which got me thinking ^

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Cut out each shape and glue down pony beads to make little peg handles . Also, for now I am completely fine with not having the exact kind of shapes that the original Montessori metal insets have. Learning to trace inside and outside of stencils is the goal ^

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Metal insets are wonderful because they are weighted down. The child doesn’t need to hold the stencil down while tracing. With this DIY version I had to teach my daughter to hold down the stencil while tracing. She didn’t mind and this process adds an added challenge ^

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And here she is turning her well traced circle into a person ^

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It all counts… especially when they’re enjoying themselves!

~Thanks for reading~