Handwriting Practice with Old CD Cases

I’ve got a quick activity to share with you all today.  Connor’s handwriting is horrible!  I’ve gotten a few handwriting books for him but I then decided a dry erase board would be better so we can erase mistakes and practice as much as possible.

handwriting practice 2

I was cleaning out the guest room closet a few weeks ago and came across a pile of old CD’s.  Then I found a handwriting book in the dollar section at Target and this idea came together.

Learning using CD Cases

All I did was cut the pages in the book so they fit inside the CD case.  Then I just placed a page inside the case and Connor was ready to start practicing his letters.  All the pages easily store inside the CD case.

Now, what else can I make with old CD cases?

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Matching Game using Gold Coins

Connor and I had so much fun playing our Dr. Seuss matching game with Hershey Kisses that I decided to make a matching game with chocolate gold coins. I think this is perfect for St. Patrick’s day but this game can be used all year long.

Gold Coin Matching Game

I found the chocolate coins for $1.  Instead of using stickers this time, I used words from Connor’s latest sight word list.  I cut out circles the size of the coin and used double sided tape to attach the circle to the coins.  It literally took me about 10 minutes make the game and we were ready to play.

gold coin matching game

Connor learned his new words in less than 20 minutes.  And now he has already asked to play it again today.

I think I’m going to get more gold coins and make it a math matching game.  For younger children you can use St. Patrick’s Day stickers or make it a  letter and color matching game.  There are so many ways to make this a fun learning game.  The gold coins are the perfect size for a matching game.  I also found plastic gold coins in the dollar section at Target if you don’t want to give your child chocolate.

We are having a blast playing these memory games together and I love that we can have fun together while learning!

Don’t forget to enter the Gold Giveaway going on this week!  You could win a $300 PayPal gift card.

Gold-Blog-Hop-and-Paypal-Giveaway

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Personalized Placemats

Last month I was thrilled to be a Creative Guest on Ucreate with Kids and I wanted to share it with you all.

I’ve become a little obsessed with Connor learning his personal information in case of an emergency.

So I decided to create a placemat that included his full name, our names (parents) and his address.  I also decided to add his birthday because all kids love their birthday!!  (I’ve blurred out the personal information in the pictures but his full name and address are on the placemat)

Now during and after dinner we talk with Connor about what street he lives on and what his last name is.  It has been a great learning tool.

Connor and I worked together to create the placemat that included this important information along with the alphabet and the numbers 1-10.  Since he is majorly obsessed with Super Heroes (can you tell from his shirt), I found spiderweb scrapbook paper and spiderman stickers for his placemat.

These are the materials we used:

  • 2 pieces of 12 x 12 scrapbook paper – any design that your child chooses
  • 1 sheet of plain white 11 x 17 printer paper
  • Alphabet and Number Stickers
  • Plain scrapbook paper – white and red
  • Coordinating stickers for decoration (optional)
  • Double Sided Tape
  • Coloring Pages (optional)
  • Scissors

Steps to create your very own placemat:

Side 1:

  • Cut the  pieces of scrapbook paper to whatever size placemat you would like.  I always make mine 11 x 17 but you can play around with any size you like.
  • Take the alphabet and number stickers and stick them onto the paper to create a border.  We first put ours on red scrapbook paper so they didn’t blend in with the black spiderweb paper.  I put the uppercase letters on the front and the lowercase letters with the numbers on the back.  This is where your kids can help!  Connor was so excited to put tape on red squares and stick them to the paper.  It was so much fun to see Connor so excited to learn the letters of the alphabet.
  • Print your child’s full name, parent’s full names, address, and birthday onto a piece of cardstock.  I also downloaded and used a dashed print font called Print Clearly so Connor could trace over his personal information after it is laminated.
  • Cut the personal information into smaller pieces and adhere to paper using the tape.  Then add some pictures and/or stickers.  I added a recent family picture and a picture of our house.  I wanted Connor to associate the word address with where he lives.

Side 2:

  • For the back you can use blank white paper or just use the back of the paper you already have.
  • I added the lowercase letters and numbers 1-10 around the edges of the paper.
  • Since I was going with the Spiderman theme, I cut out some coloring pages Connor had and taped them inside the numbers and letters.
  • Then Connor added more stickers.  He was in charge of taping and decorating.

Your final step is to have it laminated.  Once the placemat is laminated, your child can use crayons or dry erase markers to draw on the placemat.  It can easily be cleaned off later!!

Once your placemat is complete, have fun learning while eating family meals together!!

But wait there’s more…

If you don’t have time to create your own placemat, I’ve created a few that you can print and fill out with your personal information.  They print best at 11 x 17 and you can download them HERE.

You can pick whichever one you like best:)  Just have your child color it, add a few pictures and some stickers, then have it laminated.  (I’m a little obsessed with having everything laminated!)

I hope this inspires you and your child to create your own placemats.

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Fun with Sponges

I recently bought a few sponges at the dollar store so Connor and I could have fun and be creative together.
The first thing I wanted to do was cut out letters to spell out Connor’s name with letters.  I really want Connor to learn how to spell his name so I thought this would be a fun way to help him learn the letters.
This was actually much easier than I thought it would be.  I took one sponge that was probably about 2 inches thick and used a bread knife to slice it in half.  Then I sliced the two halves into 3 pieces so I had 6 rectangles all together.
I drew the letters on the sponge and used scissors to cut them.
It took me less than an hour to do this and we have had so much fun playing with the letters in the bathtub.  The best part is Connor learns while having fun!!
Then Connor and I sat down with zip ties and the other sponges to have some fun.  Connor wanted to make a fish and I wanted to make a flower.
The fish turned out cute but I’m not crazy about the flower.
  
At least we had fun together and Connor enjoys playing with them in the bathtub.
Now we are thinking of other animals we can make using sponges.
What have you made using sponges?  I’d love to get more ideas.
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St. Patrick’s Day Scavenger Hunt – Free Printable

I wanted to create a fun activity to do with Connor this month that was related to St. Patrick’s Day and will also help him learn to follow directions a little better.

So I created a scavenger hunt! To incorporate St. Patrick’s Day, I put the clues on 4-leaf clovers.

Each clue has a picture along with the actual word to help him match words with pictures.  I also created clues without pictures for older kids to use.

All you need are the following:

  • The clues.  Feel free to use the ones I’ve already made.
  • Green paper to print the clues on (optional)
  • Gold coins or a prize
  • Black pot (optional)

Directions:

  • Print out the clues provided on green paper or have your child color them before you play.
  • Hide clues 2-18 around the house and place a pot of gold (the prize) at the location of your last clue.  You can choose to do all 18 clues or stop at any number depending on your child’s age and attention span:)  My two year old could probably only handle about 8 or 10 before he wanted his pot of gold.
  • You will want to place the clues according the next clues picture or description.  Ex.  Clue 1 is a table, so you will want to place clue 2 on or under a table.  Then they will know to look for clue 3 near the refrigerator, and etc.
  • Provide you child with the first clue.
  • Final step:  Enjoy watching your child or children find the pot of gold!

I also put the clues in regular boxes so they can be used all year long.  You can also cut the clue number off each card if you want to switch the clues around the next time you play.

Download your copy of the St. Patrick’s Day Scavenger Hunt and/or Everyday Scavenger Hunt HERE, along with a set of directions:

Just make sure you have fun and enjoy the pot of gold at the end!!

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you enjoy this activity!

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Magnetic Dry Erase Board

I was driving home from work the other day trying to think of a way for Connor to learn the letters of his name.  I knew I wanted a dry erase board of some sort and then I happened to be at the Dollar Store.  I saw that they had cookie sheets for $1 and then I saw the contact paper so I knew exactly what I could make.

I made a magnetic dry erase board.  It is so easy and there endless ways that it can be used.
Materials Needed:  ( I was able to get all the supplies at the Dollar Store)
  • Cookie sheet
  • Contact paper
  • Magnet sheets
  • Letter magnets
  • Flashcards

I started by adhering the contact paper to the cookie sheet so we can write on it with dry erase markers or crayons.

Then I cut out the pictures and shapes from the flashcards.  The flashcards I found were to teach shapes and colors so the pack included pictures of objects that were different colors and shapes.

The last step is to cut the magnetic sheets into smaller pieces and stick on the back of the pictures.

This was super easy, inexpensive and will provide hours of fun while learning at the same time.

I was able to create 4 different activities with the one pack of flashcards I bought.  Now I’m keeping my eye out for more flashcards I like.
Color Sort:
We sorted the different pictures by identifying the color and placing it under the matching color.

Shape Sort:
We sorted the pictures by the shape and placed it under the shape that it matched with.

Letter Sort:
I placed different letter magnets at the top of the board and we matched the different pictures with the letter that the word begins with.

And, for the original purpose that I wanted to create this activity.  I wrote Connor’s name at the top of the board and we identified each letter.  Then we sorted through the different pictures and matched them the letters in his name.  I realized I didn’t have that many pictures to use so then we went around the house and looked for objects that started with that letter.

So many different ways to use this magnetic dry erase board!  Have fun and let me know if you make one of your own.  I’d love to hear what activities and sorts you come up with.

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