Weekend Activity – Nursery Rhymes

Studies have shown children that can recite 8 nursery rhymes by the age of 4 are much better readers by 4th grade than children that cannot.

Practice nursery rhymes with your children this weekend!  Children of any age can enjoy them.  Even babies should hear them over and over.

Sing them, act  them out, make up hand motions for them, leave out words and see if your child can fill it in, draw a picture of one, or read a book full of them.

Try finding more activities including computer games and printable coloring pages at http://www.mothergoose.com

Some of the favorites in our house are:

Hey Diddle Diddle

The Grand Ol’ Duke of York

Round and Round the Garden

Old Mother Hubbard

Baa Baa Black Sheep

Little Miss Muffett

Banbury Cross

Twinkle Twinkle

Little Boy Blue

Rain, Rain Go Away

Jack Sprat

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Make It Monday – Vacation Journal

When I was a kid, I remember journaling during vacations.  I don’t know if my parents made me do it, or if I was just that weird kind of kid, but I remember doing it.  When I went to England as an adult, and was engaged there, I was glad that I had been keeping a journal.  Now, with kids, it is difficult to remember to journal on vacation.  So, when we went to Florida last month, I took pictures every day with a plan in mind.  As soon as I returned home, I uploaded all of my photos to shutterfly and started making a photobook.  I know some people are good at scrapbooking, and that would probably be a good idea for this project, but I’m not good at it, and I wanted something very durable that could be made relatively quickly.

I made this book like a children’s story book, telling the story of our trip in the third person.  I made the language simple and to the point.  My boys love it.  It is a story featuring them!  They ask me to read it often, and they talk about it. Now, Joe even “reads” it to Matthew.

Weekend Activity – Have you seen these things?

Ok, I typically don’t like to do posts that encourage you to go out and buy things.  We’re living on a budget here, and I like to use things we’d typically have on hand.  However, have you seen these things?  I’m not big into decorations, and I don’t like kiddie looking things, but my boys love these window clings.  We got some for Christmas at the dollar spot at Target, and now those are put away in a plastic container (we’ll see if they last), and we have these up (I think I got these at the dollar store – not positive).  Each boy chose their own set, and they each were able to decorate the window behind their chair in the dining room.  They love removing the little pieces and setting them up in different ways and making stories of what they made.  They even love just feeling them.  My 16 month old has actually spent much more time with his window, arranging, rearranging, feeling, pulling; he just loves it and over signs to play there.

I have found it really useful when they’re in that hungry state when the meal just isn’t ready, but its driving them crazy to watch me finish making it.  I just tell them to go to their seats and play with their window clings, and it keeps them quiet until its ready.

They’re great for fine motor development, imagination, sensory play, counting, and language.

I’ve seen them at Target and the dollar store, and for less than $3 per package.  Have you seen them anywhere?

Weekend Activity – Listen to your spouse!

My husband is great at many things.  He is very smart and very compassionate.  I wouldn’t trade him for anyone else.  We work at our marriage, and we think about ways to make our marriage and home life run smoothly.  One of the things we have always done is divide responsibility.  There are many things that he is better at than I am, and I am glad that I have him to take on those areas of living.  I also have responsibilities that just make more sense for me to shoulder.  Two things that I am responsible for are gift buying and planning activities with the kids.  However, Mike broke into my areas recently when he came shopping with me.  We just had to stop to pick up a few things on the way home, and Mike spotted a GO FISH game on sale for $1 (Mike loves good deals – which I think is one of the reasons I am in charge of shopping).

I told him we don’t need any more toys, we are full, and that Joe probably wouldn’t understand how to play the game anyhow.  Mike stuck the game in the cart anyhow, and I decided not to make a big deal of it, but secretly thought in my head, “he’ll see…I’m right.”

Before I knew it, Mike had taught Joe how to play the game, and the two of them were having a blast.  I couldn’t believe it.  With a little tweaking of the rules, Mike managed to play several rounds with Joe, and they both were enjoying themselves.  It’s hard to not always be right, but letting go a little really was worth the smiles on these faces.

So….maybe listen to your spouse this week and do something you wouldn’t have thought would work out.  You married them for a reason after all!

 

 

Weekend Activity – Nursery Rhymes

Studies have shown children that can recite 8 nursery rhymes by the age of 4 are much better readers by 4th grade than children that cannot.

Practice nursery rhymes with your children this weekend!  Children of any age can enjoy them.  Even babies should hear them over and over.

Sing them, act  them out, make up hand motions for them, leave out words and see if your child can fill it in, draw a picture of one, or read a book full of them.

Try finding more activities including computer games and printable coloring pages at http://www.mothergoose.com

Some of the favorites in our house are:

Hey Diddle Diddle

The Grand Ol’ Duke of York

Round and Round the Garden

Old Mother Hubbard

Baa Baa Black Sheep

Little Miss Muffett

Banbury Cross

Twinkle Twinkle

Little Boy Blue

Rain, Rain Go Away

Jack Sprat

Weekend Activity – Spiders

With fall and Halloween, spiders can be a popular topic.

Try making it a spider weekend.  Do a little spider research.   Try to catch a spider in a glass jar and keep it for a bit to observe.  Go on a spider hunt.

Sing “Itsy Bitsy Spider.”

Make spiders.  Trace both your child’s hands on construction paper.  Cut them out.  Cut off the thumbs.  Paste the palms together with the fingers sticking out for the legs and glue on little white circles for eyes.  Count the legs.

You could use your newly made spider to act out Raffi’s song, “Spider on the floor.”

Read Eric Carle’s “The Very Busy Spider.”

Even if you’re scared of spiders like me, don’t let your kids know!  Put on a brave face and pretend you think they’re neat!!!