Bug Crafts For Kids: 20 Bug Themed Projects Ideas For Toddlers and Preschoolers

 

We’ve compiled a list of 20 bug themed projects and activities for toddlers and preschoolers. The world of bugs is so interesting and engaging for children and it can help get rid of some of those natural fears that many children have for insects. When you learn more about something, you don’t look at it in the same light as you once did! These projects are all simple to put together, fun for your little ones, can easily be incorporated into a bug themed lesson, or just done for fun! We hope you enjoy! 🙂




1 Investigating Bugs Sensory Bin: Sensory bins are one of our daughter’s favorite activities to do. She loves to explore and play in them and we love to put them together for her. This is a sensory bin we put together last summer during a our bug unit, ” Some Bugs  “. You can easily put this sensory bin activity together after a quick trip to your local dollar store.

Supplies:

Bug Figurines ( We used our bugs from our Take 10 Game )
Magnifying Glass
Tweezers
Black Beans

All you need to do is a grab a large storage container and dump all of the supplies into it. The black beans make the colors of the bugs pop and they also make a great textured manipulative for your little one to explore in! We explored in our bug themed sensory bin for a while, but then we used this as a resource to brush up on our counting skills by counting the bugs, then counting their legs, counting how many of each color, and so on. We also took this as an opportunity to do some investigating and questioning. We asked LC to use her microscope and inspect her bugs and talk about the things she noticed, some similarities and differences, and what characteristics each bug had.

2 Paper Plate Ladybugs: Here is another activity we did during our ” Some Bugs ” unit from last summer. At that time, LC was 2 years old and this project was simple enough for her to do, with a little help and guidance from mommy with the glue stick.

Supplies:

Paper Plates
Black Construction Paper
Red Crayons or Markers
Scissors
Glue Sticks or Elmer’s Glue
Googly Eyes

First, have your little one completely color a paper plate using a red crayon or marker. Before you sit down to start your ladybug, take a few minutes to cut out the circles, strip, and head using black construction paper.

After you’ve colored your ladybug’s body red, simply use glue to put all of the black pieces in place. While we put on the dots, we practiced our counting skills and counted how many dots we had for our ladybug, and then counted how many we put on each side. I helped place the strip of paper and the head, but we let LC go with using the glue stick and placing on the dots herself. These simple gluing activities are great opportunities for your little ones to work on their fine motor skills!

3 Going On A Bug Hunt: This activity requires no materials, prepping, or trips to the store. Simply go outside and explore the world around you and the bugs that inhabit the area around your home!

Lucky for us, there are tons of different bugs that live around our home and we are always able to come across some during our playtime outside. We have a bug observer that helps us get a little closer to bugs. During our bug hunts, we walk around our yard and driveway and try to find some cool little guys to observe. The bug observer lets us catch a bug and get a closer look at it’s body and movements.

4 Bug Themed Actions Cards: If you haven’t stumbled across ” The Oopsey Daisy Blog ” yet, YOU SHOULD CLICK THAT LINK! She has created an entire insect unit with printables and downloads for you, including these adorable action cards.

These action cards are great for a quick game to get your little ones moving, but it is also a fun way to connect and play with your children by joining in on the fun. Simply go to the link above, download and print off these cards, laminate, cut out, and let the fun begin!

5 Bug Number Puzzles: These super cute printables are amazing! They allow you to keep with your bug theme, but they also serve as puzzles and an opportunity for number review!

Supplies:

Bug Number Puzzle Printable ( FREE from Life Over C’s )
Laminator
Scissors

Simply go to the link for these printables in the supplies list, print them out, laminate, and cut. These are a great activity to incorporate into your classroom, but they are also a great “quick review” when you only have 5 or so minutes to spare in your busy day!

6 Bugs In A Jar Counting Game: Another cute printable! With this activity, you can let your little ones just explore the bugs and place them in the jar, or you could incorporate dice and make a game out of it.

Supplies:

Bugs In A Jar Printable ( FREE from The Measured Mom )
Laminator
Scissors
Dice

We LOVE The Measured Mom. We always find amazing printables that are free, colorful, and inviting for our little one. For this activity, we started by letting LC explore the bugs and move them back and forth from the jar to the table. Then we added the dice element and turned it into a fun, bug themed game. We also used the bug pieces for a matching game later on. I am cautious when printing things off like this because WOW do they use some ink, but when a printable is so versatile, I know it’s worth it!

7 Bug Fossils Playdough Tray: Hands on exploring is such an awesome learning technique for preschoolers and anything with playdough is a GO for our little one. LC loves anything we put together for that involves playdough, so we set up this fossil station for her this winter when we had been stuck inside for days.

Supplies:

Bug Figurines ( We used the bugs from our Take 10 game, see # 9 below )
Playdough
Rolling Pin

Take small amounts of playdough and roll into a ball. Let your little ones do this as it is a great way to strengthen those hand and arm muscles! Use a rolling pin to flatten your balls of playdough and simply press your bug figurines into the dough. Your kids will love doing this again and again and you could also exchange the bugs for other objects to explore textures, such as pipe cleaners, leaves, sticks from outside, and so on!

8 Name Building With A Caterpillar: There are a million different ways you can get your kids to learn how to spell and write their name. For our little one that doesn’t quite have the ability to write and form letters, the use of manipulatives with letters already on them are what we are using at the moment. This caterpillar themed name building project is a perfect way for us to get that practice!

Supplies:

Construction Paper
Marker
Glue
Googly Eyes

To prep for this activity, cut out one circle for each letter of your child’s name, plus one extra for your caterpillar’s head. Write the letters on each circle using a marker.

Let your little one line up the letter circles in the order that their name is spelled and then have them glue each one to an uncut piece of construction paper. We added googly eyes to our little guy once we were all done.

This project is great for getting kids familiar with constructing their names, letter order, focusing on those fine motor skills, and an easy project to put together and get creative!

9 Take 10 Bug Catcher Game: This is a game that we purchased during our classroom creation this past winter. Take 10 is a great game to play when you need a break from a busy or stressful day. You simply play this quick 10 minute game with your little ones by rolling the two dice. One is a number, the other is a color. Using the tweezers, you simply pick up that many of that color. Super easy to play, even for a toddler learning how to count and correlate numbers to objects!

The great thing about this game is that it is fun for your little ones, educational, super quick to get through, but also because you can borrow the pieces for other activities and projects you want to do. We’ve used our bugs for sensory bins, playdough activities, painting projects, and the list goes on!

10 Watercolor Spiderwebs: We originally did this project for our ” 31 Days Of Halloween ” post. If you’re looking for more Halloween themed projects, check out that list! Our daughter loved this project! She loves to paint and any project that she gets to do that, she’s in. We think the element of surprise is what made this activity so much fun.

Supplies:

Watercolor Paper
Watercolors Set
White Crayons
Paint Brushes

First you will need your pieces of white paper and your white crayon. Using your crayon, draw out a large spiderweb on each of your pieces of paper. I recommend doing several pieces of paper, because your kids will want to keep making these and watching the webs show up!

Now get your watercolors, paint brushes, and water cup all set up. We didn’t tell LC what was going to happen, we just let her start painting. She was very surprised and excited to see the spiderwebs start to appear!

11 Ladybug Bug Themed Preschool Printables:  We found these super cute ladybug printables from HomeschoolDeals.com. They are free and super easy to download. Click here for these free printables!

12 Build A Bug Creation Station: Exploring with playdough is currently one of our daughter’s favorite activities to do! Anything that involves playdough, she’s down with no complaints, but that, of course, makes it hard to end the activity. Even when we’ve been playing for close to 2 hours… This bug themed playdough tray activity is easy to put together and let’s your children get creative and explore materials in a different way!

Supplies:

Tray
Playdough
Sequins
Pipe Cleaners
Googly Eyes
Colorful Buttons
Anything else you can think of to help you create your own bugs! ( yogurt tops, washers, sticks, etc. )

We were given this tray, but you can get one just like this just about anywhere. As usual, I suggest checking your local dollar store! Take your tray and place all of your items in the different spots. We rolled our playdough into balls to start, but it worked out since we ended up making caterpillars during this activity.

Let your kids create their own bugs using the items in the tray. We created our own caterpillar first, just to show LC what she COULD do, but LC decided that’s how it was SUPPOSE to be done and continued to make all of her creations look just like ours. Eventually, we got her to start fresh and make her own version of a caterpillar.

13 Butterfly Feeder: This is a super easy summer project to do with your little ones after your afternoon snack. Rather than throwing out our orange peels, we saved them and created these super simple butterfly feeders.

Supplies:

Orange Peels
String or Yarn
Knife

Use your knife to cut small slits into your orange peels, just big enough to allow you to lace your yarn through. Tie your yarn to make a orange peel necklace and you’re ready to go. We hung our feeder from our tree in our front yard. We even saw a few butterflies later that day checking out our peels.

14 Butterfly Suncatchers: Suncatchers are always a simple and versatile project we like to do in our house. Buy one roll of clear contact paper from Walmart and you’ll be set for years ! We’ve used these same steps to make ornament suncatchers, pumpkin suncatchers, jellyfish suncatchers, and so much more.

Supplies:

Tissue Paper ( Various Colors )
Black Construction Paper
Clear Contact Paper
Scissors

First, take your piece of black construction paper and fold it in half. Using a pencil or marker, draw your cut lines for your butterfly wings and a strech oval for it’s body.

Cut out your two pieces and place aside. Cut your tissue paper into small squares and place in a bowl so that your children can easily grab the pieces during the activity.

Next, take your roll of clear contact paper and cut out an amount that will be big enough for your butterfly cut-out, but remember to cut out TWO pieces of contact paper of the same size. You will lay your second piece over the finished product in order to seal your butterfly creation.

Remove the protective paper from one piece of contact paper and lay it sticky side up on the flat surface that your children will be working. Now lay your wing and body outline on this sticky side. Give your kids the bowl of tissue paper and let them fill in the butterfly wings.

Once they have completed their wings, take your second piece of contact paper and remove the protective paper. Slowly lay this second piece on top of your other piece, sticky side down. This will seal your butterfly creation. Cut out your butterfly from the excess contact paper and you’ve got a beautiful piece to hang in a window. We usually use a small piece of tape to stick our suncatchers to the windows, but you could also punch out a little hole and hang it from the window seal if you’d prefer.

15 Butterfly Life Cycle Sequence Strips: These printables are super cute and FREE! So if you’re looking for something for the classroom setting, these printables are definitely worth the ink and lamination!

Supplies:

Sequence Strips ( Free Printable Here )
Laminator
Scissors
Pocket Chart ( Optional )

We just started to talk about the life cycle of a butterfly with our little one and we decided to use these printables in our classroom. The pictures are colorful and bright and the text is in a font that is easy to read. We’ve slowly been introducing text into our pre-project time and these printables made that opening a breeze to set up. LC loved putting the pictures in order and loves using her pocket chart. Be sure to check out the other items that One Sharp Bunch has to offer!

16 Creepy Crawly Painting: Using our bugs from our Take 10 game, we had some creepy crawling fun with this painting project. If you don’t have this game, you can easily find a set of plastic bugs at your local dollar store. This is a great project to do with any bug themed unit, but it also opens up a discussion about texture.

Supplies:

Plastic Bugs
Kids Washable Paint ( Crayola )
White Painting Paper
Paper Plate

Get your bug friends ready for some painting fun! Use a paper plate to place your paint on and lay out your piece of white painting paper.

Set up your painting station in a good area where it’s okay to get a little messy. We have an outdoor classroom set up in our garage, so we do all of our painting out there. It’s cool if we get messy or drop paint on the floor. Simply dip your bugs in the paint and let them “walk” across the paper.

17 Pony Bead Pattern Worms: This is another incredibly easy project to do with your little ones and it touches on several concepts and skills. The holding and stringing of beads focuses on fine motor skills, the creation of patterns let your little ones explore and get creative, and, of course, this is a great way to help them learn what a pattern is, what comes next, and how to create their own pattern. You only need a few items to do this project and clean up is a breeze, if you are sure to use small bowls to hold the beads !

Supplies:

Pipe Cleaners
Various Colors of Pony Beads
Small Bowls or Ramekins ( to help keep the beads from rolling away 🙂  )

First, take your pipe cleaners and form one end into a spiral. This will act as your worm’s head, but it will also help keep the beads from falling off.

We used these small ramekins to hold our beads for this project. We bought them at Walmart last summer and we have used them over and over again! I believe each one was about .50 and we found them in their party section. Once all of your items are ready to go, let your little ones start their worm. We first created a small pattern on LC’s first pattern worm and asked her to recreate the pattern again, and so on. By the time we got to the second worm, LC got it and created her own pattern. When you are done, simply fold your pipe cleaner end in a way that prevents the beads from sliding off.

18 Spider Stamps: This is another project we had originally done during our ” 31 Days of Halloween ” post. It is a great way to reuse those cardboard rolls that are left over from paper towels and toilet paper!

Supplies:

Cardboard Roll
Scissors
Kids Washable Paint ( Crayola )
White Painting Paper
Paper Plate

Take your cardboard roll and get ready to transform it into a cut spider stamp. On one end, make 4 cuts on opposite sides, so 8 cuts total. This will form the legs for your spider stamp. The 2 square pieces that are between your sets of legs need to be cut off in order for your stamp to work properly.

Once you have created your spider stamp, you’re ready to get painting! Simply add your paint to a paper plate, lay out your piece of painting paper, and let your kids start stamping away 🙂

 19 Free Bug Coloring Sheets: Here are a few links to some really cute bug themed coloring sheets for kids. Enjoy!

Insect Coloring Sheets 

Beetle Coloring Sheets 

Symmetry Bug Coloring Sheets 

Butterfly Themed Coloring Sheets 

Free Coloring Pages

Advanced Coloring Pages

Free Adult Coloring Pages

20  Insect Videos For Kids: Here are several bug themed videos you and your kids can enjoy together!

Bugs and Insects For Preschool and Kindergarten 

Icky Insects By Silly Bus

I Like Bugs

Find Out About Insects – Nat Geo For Kids

What Is An Insect ? 

Nature’s Fireworks – Fireflies 

Planet Earth Insects Slideshow 

Venus Fly Trap Planet Earth ( Warning: The flies make some very sad noises ! )

We hope that this list of bug themed activities and projects has given you some inspiration. If you have questions or comments, leave them for us below 🙂 Also, if you run a blog and have items that you’d like to be added to any of our upcoming lists or posts, we’d love to hear from you! Enjoy!

Brittany XOXO

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Looking for something for yourself? Check out our other Etsy shop for inspirational decor. Here are a few of our recent listings:

Learning The Alphabet: Hands On Activities and Projects For Learning The Alphabet For Preschoolers

Learning The Alphabet

Our little one has been able to identify her letters for a while now, but this summer, I wanted to start to get her more familiar them. We have been working hard to learn about all of the letters of the alphabet, their sounds, both lower and uppercase identification, and to find objects that start with each letter. Rather than just singing the alphabet and coloring a letter specific worksheet, we decided to give LC a more hands on approach. For each specific letter, we found opportunities to teach her about a wide variety of animals, foods, and objects! We did do the traditional activities, like finger tracing the letter, but we also tried to go a step further and take advantage of every learning opportunity. We hope that you enjoy these activities and that they inspire you to take your lessons one step further.

Be sure to check out our Etsy shop for homemade educational supplies! Our shop has supplies for hands on activities, sensory bin kits that feature all sorts of fills, a wonderful book that correlates with the kit’s theme, and project ideas, and so much more ! Click the link below:

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There are plenty of activities and projects you can choose from to do with your little ones to help them become familiar and learn the letters of the alphabet. Aside from singing the ABCs and playing with educational video games on a gaming system, there are hands on, fun activities that you can incorporate into your learning time.

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Here is a list of our favorite whole letter activities:

Sensory Box Scavenger Hunt –

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Around here, we are all about sensory activities! Over the summer, my father built an amazing two sided sensory bin table for LC and we’ve played with it almost every single day! Sensory activities have numerous benefits and provide an opportunity for children to do some hands on exploring. Sensory bin activities are amazing because it allows for a sensory activity to be done in a contained area and make clean up a breeze. Just put a top on and store for later!

For this whole alphabet activity, just add rice, some other manipulatives, such as pom poms, large jewels, or buttons, and a set of alphabet magnets. You can choose to either let them explore all on their own, or you can add alphabet cards as prompts for what letters to find.

Alphabet Soup – 

We received this alphabet set for Christmas last year and it has been so much fun for our to explore in. Each letter of the alphabet is represented with a “can”. Each can features a real-life photographic image of something that begins with that specific letter. The back of each of these cards also features the name of that something. This set has been great all on it’s own, but it can also be used with various other elements, such as a sensory bin. The kit comes from Learning Resources, but we recommend looking for it on Walmart’s website or from Amazon! 🙂

Rainbow Sand Writing –

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Using a cookie tray, sand, alphabet cards, and a piece of rainbow scrapbooking paper, we created this fun activity for LC to start using. While we don’t expect our two year old to master writing just yet, you have to start somewhere! This sand writing activity is a great way to familiar your kids with letter work, how each letter is constructed, and just work with letters in general. The rainbow paper just makes it more inviting and colorful!

Magnetic Board –

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Go to your local dollar store and pick up a few cookie trays. You’re welcome! These trays have been so awesome in our play area and we’ve been using them in various ways. As you can see, we nailed a few to our play area walls. They are great for displaying artwork, but we have been using them mostly for our magnetic letter work. We use a version of this activity in our Kindergarten classroom with a ring of note cards that features our sight words that we are currently working with.

This is a great way to help familiarize children with the letters of the alphabet, begin to construct words, and work on their knowledge of phonics. Recently, we’ve been using the ” letter hunt ” sensory bin in conjunction with these magnetic boards. LC loves building her name and we are so happy that she is starting to be able to make and identify her name!

Playdough Letter Building –

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Playdough activities are fantastic for focusing on fine motor skills! Using playdough and a set of alphabet cards, we’ve been working on creating each letter. We’ve started with the simple letters, such as A,C,E,F, and L. LC is all about playdough play, so this was a great invitation to play!




Click on each letter unit image below and you will be directed to that letter’s activities and project ideas. Enjoy ! 

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Features: Learning about Apple Farms, Homemade Applesauce, Painting With Apples, and A For Alligator Letter Sheet. Links for our resources.

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Features: Some Bugs ( Bug Unit ), Button Sensory Activity, and Bunny Mask. Links to our resources.

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Features: Homemade Heart Crayons, Exploring Colors With Font, Sorting Activities, and Colorful Cat Dolls. Links to our resources.

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Features: Dino Hunt Sensory Bin, Making Dino Chocolate, Taking Care Of Our Dogs, and Duck Pond Counting Activity. Links to our resources.

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Features: Colorful Eggs, Egg Basket Activity Chart, Elmer The Elephant, and Elmo Busy Bag. Links to our resources.

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Features: Exploring Our Ocean Unit, Painting Flowers With Potatoes, Paper Plate Flowers, and Brown Bag Frog. Links to our resources.

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Features: Gingerbread Man, Homemade Grape Pops, Letter G Grape Vine, Goldilocks Scavenger Hunt, and Goldilocks and The Three Bears Coloring Sheet. Links to our resources.

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Features: Building Houses With Shapes, Building Blocks, Letter H Happiness Sheet, Heart Scavenger Hunt, and Chat and Draw Happiness Activity. Links to our resources.

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Features: Homemade Ice Cream, Painting With Ice, and Moving Iguanas. Links to our resources.

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Features: Jell-O Sensory Bin, Jellyfish Sun Catchers, Exploring Our Ocean Unit, and Paper Plate Jaguar Mask. Links to our resources.

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Features: Coloring Sheets, Traditional K For Kite Activity, Exploring The World of Kangaroos, Painting A Kiwi, and Kiwi Smoothies. Links to our resources.

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Features: Painting Lions, Lion Masks, Paper Plate Ladybug, Lemon Cookies, Painting With Lemons, and ” Some Bugs ” Book Unit. Link to our resources.

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Features: Marshmallow Blooms Cupcakes, Moon Drawings, Marshmallow Poppers, Marshmallow Sensory Bin, Pressed Monsters, Melted Monster Sensory Bin, and Exploring The Moon Sensory Bin. Links to our resources.

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Features: ” Little Owl’s Night ” Book Unit, Nesting Bags, Paper Plate Nests, Edible Necklaces, and Coloring Sheets. Links to our resources.

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Features: Painting With Oranges, Felt Ostrich Busy Bag, O is for Ostrich, Homemade Orange Juice, Butterfly Necklaces, and more! Links to our resources.

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Features: Homemade Playdough, Playdough Letter Building, Homemade Pizza Night, Felt Pizza Busy Bag, P is for Parrot, and more! Links to our resources.

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Features: Painting With Q-Tips, Q For Quails, Science Center Explorations, Links To Other Blogs Letter Posts, and more! Links to our resources.

Learning The Alphabet (80)

Features: Rainbow Writing, Rain Sticks, Rain Sensory Bin, Rain Cloud Jar, Painting Rhinos, and more! Links to our resources.

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Features: Galaxy Jars, Rocket Ship Name Building, Super Simple Paper Plate Seahorses, and more! Links to our resources.

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Features: Seasons in Tree, Paper Plate Turtles, How Many Teeth Counting Game, Healthy Teeth/ Healthy Self, and more! Links to our resources.

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Features: Umbrella Number Match, Shape Unicorn, Coloring Sheets, and more! Links to our resources.

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Features: Colorful Volcanoes ( Science Experiment For All Ages ), Traditional V for Violin Activity, Veggie Felt Garden, and more! Links to our resources.

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Features: Whale Coloring Sheets, Tissue Paper Watermelon, Free Weather Chart Printables, and More ! Links to our resources.
Learning The Alphabet (86)

Features: Watercolor X-Rays, Free X-Ray Printables, Water Xylophone, and more! Links to our resources!

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Features: Self Portraits, Lacing Cards, Preschool Questionnaire, Yellow Sensory Bin, and more! Links to our resources !

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Features: Zucchini Muffins, Z is for Zebra, Zipper Boards, and more! Links to our resources !

 

That wraps up our letter exploration units! We’ve been working on these units for months now and we’ve had so much fun together. We’ve done a million different projects, painting with various objects, introduced to phonics concepts, learned all about different kinds of animals, fruits, instruments, and other concepts. This activities have given us something to do together every night and our little one has looked forward to these nightly activities. We hope that these letter units have inspired you and hope that you’ll find some activity or project to do with your family! Enjoy 🙂

Brittany XOXO

Looking for handmade sensory bin supplies? Check out our Etsy shop for supplies and sensory bin kits. Each of our kits come with a brand new book that relates to the theme of your selected kit! Here are a few of our recent listings below:

Exploring The Letter Z: Zucchini, Zebras, and Zippers

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At the beginning of our letter exploration, we start by looking at the letter and tracing this letter with our fingers. During this time, I make the sound that that particular letter makes and LC repeats it back to me.We use an alphabet placemat for this portion. We then sing the ABC song, putting emphasis on the letter we will be learning about. Since the school year is back in full swing, I’m not with LC all day anymore. Ugh! We now take about 5 to 7 days to get through each letter. You may find that that time frame is either too long, or too short, for your own little one, but it works for us.




The idea behind OUR letter units is to provide opportunities for hands on learning that allow LC to learn each of her letters, the sounds they make, and to make real world connections with these letters, while also touching on other concepts and subject areas. For example, when we were working on the letter A, we learned that the word “apple” starts with A. Rather than just leaving it at that, we took that opportunity to learn more about apples. How they grow, what colors they come in, the different ways we can use them, and so on. There is an opportunity to learn something new every single day and we fully plan on taking advantage of these opportunities. Here are our activity and projects all about the letter U ! Be sure to check out our previous post: ” Exploring The Letter Y: You, Yellow, and Yarn “.

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If you have read any of our other posts, you will already know that we are big fans of Zucchini Muffins! They are a wonderfully healthy snack, but they are also incredibly easy to put together. It’s also a great activity for LC to help us with in the kitchen. For this letter Z exploration, we thought that we’d wrap up this letter unit by making these tasty treats along with learning all about the letter Z.

Zucchini Muffins – Here is a link to our post all about baking in the kitchen with our little one: ” Cooking For Toddlers: Yummy Zucchini Muffins

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

Zucchini Vegetable Video For Preschoolers 

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We’ve touched on several different animals throughout our entire letter exploration, so it was only right that we ended our unit with Zebra! We’ve spent plenty of time watching videos of zebras, learning about what they eat, where they can be found, and examined their unique coloring.

Here are the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Z For Zebra – For this activity, you will need one piece of white construction paper, one piece of black construction paper, and one piece of construction paper that will serve as your background. You will also need a pair of scissors, a set of googly eyes, a sharpie, and a glue stick.

First, cut out the letter Z from your piece of construction paper. Next, cut out several stripes from your piece of black construction paper. Present your little one with the background piece of paper, the letter Z, and the stripes. Have them glue the Z onto their paper and then have them add the zebra’s stripes. Add the googly eyes and that’s it! Don’t forget to use your sharpie to add a title to your child’s work.

Zebra Coloring Sheets – Here is a link to the coloring sheets we used for this portion of our letter unit.

Zebra Finger Puppets – Here is a link to this adorable project from I Heart Crafty Things. This is such a cute project!

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

Zebras For Kids Video

Zebra

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The toddler age brings about a lot of different discoveries. From being able to communicate what they want to eat, and everything they don’t want to eat, to learning how to use those tiny fingers to do things. There are a million different toys, videos, and practice games parents can present their little ones that help them learn how to tie a knot, button up a shirt, or zipper up their jackets. We like real world applications for learning these types of skills, so for this portion of our unit, we did a ” Zipper Search ” in our home and challenged our daughter to zip up all of the zippers she found.

Here are the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Zipper Search – We walked around our home to each room and each closet to hunt down different items of clothing that had zippers. This was such a simple activity to do with our little one, but we think it really helped her perfect this skill. Zippering up and down is the easiest of tasks for most kids to grasp, but the hard part of starting the zipping. We found that this activity really help our little one figure this part out!

Zipper Boards – If you wanted to create a more ” sit down ” activity for your little ones, we recommend making your own zipper board. These boards are super easy to put together and it is significantly cheaper than buying one of those fastener puzzles you see in the stores. Here is a link to a great blog post that features the steps for making your own zipper board and 24 other activities for keeping your toddler quiet and busy !

 

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And that wraps up our FINAL letter exploration post! We’ve had such a great time learning and growing with our daughter and have loved every second of her discovery. Next week, we’ll be publishing our post featuring links to each of our letter exploration units, as well as activities and project ideas that work with the entire alphabet. Be sure to check back with us!

Brittany XOXO

Exploring The Letter Y: You, Yellow, and Yarn

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At the beginning of our letter exploration, we start by looking at the letter and tracing this letter with our fingers. During this time, I make the sound that that particular letter makes and LC repeats it back to me.We use an alphabet placemat for this portion. We then sing the ABC song, putting emphasis on the letter we will be learning about. Since the school year is back in full swing, I’m not with LC all day anymore. Ugh! We now take about 5 to 7 days to get through each letter. You may find that that time frame is either too long, or too short, for your own little one, but it works for us.




The idea behind OUR letter units is to provide opportunities for hands on learning that allow LC to learn each of her letters, the sounds they make, and to make real world connections with these letters, while also touching on other concepts and subject areas. For example, when we were working on the letter A, we learned that the word “apple” starts with A. Rather than just leaving it at that, we took that opportunity to learn more about apples. How they grow, what colors they come in, the different ways we can use them, and so on. There is an opportunity to learn something new every single day and we fully plan on taking advantage of these opportunities. Here are our activity and projects all about the letter Y ! Be sure to check out our previous post: ” Exploring The Letter X: Xylophones and X-Rays ” .

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For this portion of our letter Y exploration, we let LC focus on her. Her beautiful smile, her ability to be silly at just the right moments, and her other wonderful characteristics. We also talked about our bodies, what each part of is called, what makes up our bodies, and how we keep them safe and healthy.

Here are the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Self-Portraits

This activity was so much fun for us! At the age of two, LC knows her facial features, but it was so funny to see her examine her face in a mirror and “draw” what she saw. We started with an outline of a head, neck, and shoulders on a piece of construction paper and let LC start wherever she wanted to on her portrait. We helped her along the way by sketching the eyes, nose, and mouth placement and she did her best to color over these areas herself. I think this is going to be a project I keep up with every year and see how her self-portraits change and evolve over time!

All About Me Questionaire – This is a cute questionaire to do each year with your children. We used this questionaire and it was hilarious to hear LC’s responses. Be honest and write down whatever your children say. You’ll appreciate this honesty later in their lives when you pull these out!

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

Who I Am Sesame Street Video

All About Me Video

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Our little one knows all of her colors, but this was a fun way for us to explore the colors around us, while also learning about the letter Y. We focused more on the letter Y for this portion of our unit, but including the color yellow as way to also incorporate text and help LC also start to learn to identify and “read” the color names as well.

Here are the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Yellow Sensory Bin

Colorful sensory bins are always fun to put together. LC went through our classroom and pulled out all of the yellow items that she saw. We through everything in our sensory bin, along with some yellow hand dyed rice, and played for over an hour. Colored themed sensory bins are great for little ones learning their colors, but they are also a great opportunity for language development and self exploration!

What’s Yellow Sorting Activity

Here is a color sorting activity we did for this unit. Sorting activities are great for little ones and can also help build a strong foundation for math skills later in their academic success. For this activity, we simply created a pile of toys and items in various colors and LC pulled out the yellow objects that she saw.

Color Names Coloring Activity – We used this coloring sheet for this portion of our letter unit. It features all of the colors, but we started with yellow since that’s where our focus was.

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our unit:

Learning Colors For Kids

Colorful Ice Cream Video 

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If you love doing projects and activities with your children, you probably already have a stock pile of yarn in your craft supplies. For this portion of our unit, we talked about all the ways you can use yarn and we did several projects using yarn as a main material.

Here are a few of the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Yarn Wrapped Stars and Trees

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This is an activity that we had done during Christmas to make some ornaments for our tree. All you need is a piece of cardboard, yarn, a pair of scissors, and tape. Cut you cardboard into any shape you’d like, tape a piece of yarn to this piece of cardboard and let your little ones wrap the yarn around the shape. This is an incredibly easy project to put together, but it also focuses on improving those fine motor skills.

Lacing Activity

Lacing cards are another activity that focuses on developing those fine motor skills. You can find lacing cards just about anywhere, even at your local dollar store! We found our set in the dollar section at Target over the summer.

 

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We are so close to being done with our letter exploration units! I can’t believe we will be started the letter Z next week. Throughout our units, our daughter has learned so much and we have spent a great deal of time together.  Keep an eye out for next weeks unit, ” Exploring The Letter Z: Zucchini, Zebras, and Zippers

Brittany XOXO

Don’t forget to check out our latest listings in our Etsy shop!

Exploring The Letter X : Xylophones and X-Rays

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At the beginning of our letter exploration, we start by looking at the letter and tracing this letter with our fingers. During this time, I make the sound that that particular letter makes and LC repeats it back to me.We use an alphabet placemat for this portion. We then sing the ABC song, putting emphasis on the letter we will be learning about. Since the school year is back in full swing, I’m not with LC all day anymore. Ugh! We now take about 5 to 7 days to get through each letter. You may find that that time frame is either too long, or too short, for your own little one, but it works for us.




The idea behind OUR letter units is to provide opportunities for hands on learning that allow LC to learn each of her letters, the sounds they make, and to make real world connections with these letters, while also touching on other concepts and subject areas. For example, when we were working on the letter A, we learned that the word “apple” starts with A. Rather than just leaving it at that, we took that opportunity to learn more about apples. How they grow, what colors they come in, the different ways we can use them, and so on. There is an opportunity to learn something new every single day and we fully plan on taking advantage of these opportunities. Here are our activity and projects all about the letter X ! Be sure to check out our previous post: ” Exploring The Letter W: Whales, Watermelons, and Weather “.

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Oh yes, another LOUD unit. Why does it seem that the louder the toys and activities, the happier our children are? We’ve touched on a few musical instruments throughout our letter units, but xylophones seemed to be our daughter’s favorite!

Here are the activities we did for this portion of our letter exploration:

Paper Crafting Xylophone

Since we don’t own a traditional xylophone, we created one using construction paper and made our own sound effects 🙂 . Gather several different colors of construction paper, a glue stick, some scissors, and a sharpie. Select a piece of paper that will serve as your background. Using a piece of black construction paper, we started by cutting out a large X shape. We then took 4 different colored pieces of construction paper and cut out strips to act as our bars. We then took all of our pieces and let LC assemble her xylophone. Once she was done, we used the sharpie to add a title to our paper and practice writing the letter X.

Water Cup Xylophone  –

This is such a cool activity and it was a breeze to create. To make this one yourself, you will need 5 glass cups, water, food dye, or liquid watercolors, and a plastic spoon. Simple fill your different cups with varying amounts of water, as seen in the pictures above. Next, add different colors of food dye to each glass. Give your spoon to your little one and let them find their inner musician! Since you are using glass cups, it goes without saying that this activity needs supervision!

Letter X Coloring Sheets – Here is a link to the coloring sheets we used for this portion of our letter exploration.

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

Xylophone Musical Video For Kids

Intense Xylophone Kids ( For a good laugh 🙂 )

Zeppelin! Louisville Leopard Percussion

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The concept and science behind x-rays are too advanced for our daughter’s age group to grasp, but she definetly had fun exploring them and playing doctor. Over the summer, we took a trip to Marbles. It’s a kids museum and it’s amazing for children that love dramatic play. Among the many set-ups they have, including an entire grocery store and kitchen area, they also have a vet’s office and hospital. In both of those areas, they have x-ray stations where children and view x-rays of different parts of the body. Recalling our time at Marbles was a great conversation starter and it brought straight into this portion of our letter unit.

Here are the activities we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

X-Ray With Q-Tips

I really wish we would have done this one during Halloween time! It definitely has a creepy factor! To do this project with your little ones, you will need several pieces of black construction paper, Q-Tips, a white crayon, and Elmer’s Glue.

First, trace your child’s hand and arm, using your white crayon, on to a piece of black construction paper. Next, lay out the Q-Tips where your bones are. We started with the fingers and worked our way down. We also had a picture up of what a real arm x-ray looks like as a guide for us to use. Once all of your Q-Tips are in place, go back and glue them to your paper using the Elmer’s glue.

X-Ray Watercolor Creations

For this awesome project, you will need white painting paper, watercolors, a white crayon, and a cup of water. Since we wanted to have a surprise factor for this project, we first drew out hands, feet, and other parts of the body on our white painting paper using the white crayon. This way, when LC went to paint, the images would just appear. We took our paper and held it over her hand, acted like we were taking an x-ray and then let her paint to reveal the image! When painting with the watercolor for this project, we found that we got our best result when we used darker colors like black or brown. These colors also made our x-rays look for realistic!

X-Ray Printouts – Here is a link to some awesome x-ray print outs that you can use as visuals for your own discussion about x-rays! You can laminate and even continue to use them in a dramatic play center!

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

What’s An X-Ray? 

How An X-Ray Works – Bethany G

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Another exploration down! As our letter units draw to a close, we are frantically searching for ideas to keep up with LC’s love of learning. If you have any suggestions about great blogs or sites where you find your ideas at, we’d love to hear about them! Check out our next letter exploration post ” Exploring The Letter Y: You, Yellow, and Yarn “.

Brittany XOXO

Looking for some sensory bin fun? Check out our handmade educational supplies in our Etsy shop, Creative Outlet For Little Hands. We have tons of sensory bin fillers and sensory kits! Here are a few of our recent listings:

 

Exploring The Letter W: Whales, Watermelons, and Weather

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At the beginning of our letter exploration, we start by looking at the letter and tracing this letter with our fingers. During this time, I make the sound that that particular letter makes and LC repeats it back to me.We use an alphabet placemat for this portion. We then sing the ABC song, putting emphasis on the letter we will be learning about. Since the school year is back in full swing, I’m not with LC all day anymore. Ugh! We now take about 5 to 7 days to get through each letter. You may find that time frame is either too long, or too short, for your own little one, but it works for us.




The idea behind OUR letter units is to provide opportunities for hands on learning that allow LC to learn each of her letters, the sounds they make, and to make real world connections with these letters, while also touching on other concepts and subject areas. For example, when we were working on the letter A, we learned that the word “apple” starts with A. Rather than just leaving it at that, we took that opportunity to learn more about apples. How they grow, what colors they come in, the different ways we can use them, and so on. There is an opportunity to learn something new every single day and we fully plan on taking advantage of these opportunities. Here are our activity and projects all about the letter W ! Be sure to check out our previous post: ” Exploring The Letter V: Vegetables, Volcanoes, and Violins “.

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We recently got LC her own tablet to encourage her to use the potty. She’s loved playing with it, but we’re still working on the sitting on the potty portion…. Anyways, she’s found a whale video that comes with the game system and has watched it over and over and over again. This has sparked a recent interest in whales, so since the letter W was coming up in our letter units, we thought we’d sneak this mammal in 🙂

Here are the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Wonderful Whale and Water Bead Sensory Bin – This sensory bin idea is SO adorable. Check out this cute idea from Living Montessori Now. This link also gives you some free printables!

Whale Coloring Sheets – Here is a link to the coloring sheets we used for this portion of our unit.

Here are the videos we viewed during this unit:

Sesame Street- Whales Brushing Teeth ( This is the video LC is addicted to ! )

Whales For Kids

Underwater Whale Sounds

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The warm weather has passed and now we are fully in fall. One of the many things we miss about the summer, is our time at the lake. During our time at the lake, we enjoy playing in the water, boat rides, and so much more. LC got her first taste of watermelon this past year at the lake and asks for it every time she goes grocery shopping with me. Playing at her interests once again, we included watermelons in this letter unit!

Here are the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Tissue Paper Watermelon

To create this tissue paper watermelon activity, you will need one piece of construction paper to serve as your background, a sharpie or pencil, green and red tissue paper, one piece of black construction paper for the seeds, and a glue stick. Cut or tear your tissue paper up into medium-sized pieces and place each color in a separate bowl. Cut out about 8 seeds from your piece of black construction paper.

On your piece of construction paper that you’ve designated to be your background, draw an outline of a piece of watermelon with your sharpie or pencil. Let your little one use the glue stick and tissue paper to “color in” their slice of watermelon. We are always sure to add a title to projects like this as a way to present the letter we are working on.

Watermelon Seed Counting Cards – Check out this FREE printable for watermelon seed counting cards from Modern Preschool ! Simply print, laminate, and grab some black playdough!

Here are the videos we used for this letter unit:

The Watermelon Song 

Watermelon – The Biscuit Brothers 

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We’ve covered different portions of weather throughout a few of our letter exploration units. In our ” Exploring The Letter R ” we learned all about rain and got to experience a great deal of it thanks to Hurricane Matthew. For this unit, we explored more into this concept and talked about the other kinds of weather we get to experience. We also learned about what a meteorologist is and what they do to help us each and every day.

For this unit, we talked about what different weather conditions look like, what it feels like, and what we need to do to keep safe during this times. We talked all about how important sun screen is during the beautiful sunny days, but also how we need to keep our body hydrated and cool during these days as well! We talked about how it’s fun to play in the rain, but we should always listen for thunder and lightning and get inside when we hear or see those things.

Here are the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Daily Weather Chart

We printed out this chart from A Little Pinch Of Perfect. It’s a great blog with amazing printables! Click here to be taken to this blog and for a link to this free weather chart. Since we’ve been talking about weather all this week, we have incorporated this into our morning routine. Using this chart and discussing the weather each morning has really helped us with understanding why our clothing choices for the day are important, especially now during these cold months! We feel like we’ve given LC a lot more say and responsibility in her outfit choices.

Check out how we incorporated this weather chart into our new preschool classroom in our recent post ” Our Homeschooling Room: Tips and Tricks For Setting Up A Classroom On A Budget “.

Rain Cloud In A Jar

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In our Letter R unit, we made rain clouds in jar and LC just loved them! So this time, when we circled back to this concept, we had to do this project again! Check out all the details for this activity by reading our unit post ” Exploring The Letter R: Rain, Rainbows, and Rhinos ” .

Here are the videos we watched for this portion of our unit:

Wonder About Weather

What Causes Thunder And Lightening? 

Where Do Snowflakes Come From?

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That concludes our letter W exploration unit. We’ve been having so much fun learning about all sorts of things these past few months. Next week, in our ” Exploring The Letter X: Xylophones and X-Rays “, we’ll be learning about Xylophones and how they work, learning about X-Rays and how they help us, while also learning about the letter X, what sound it makes, and how to form this tricky letter.

Brittany XOXO

25 Days of Christmas: 25 Craft Ideas and Activities For Toddlers

25 Days Of Christmas

It’s that wonderful time of year again! We love the holiday season, but our favorite holiday of all is Christmas. The music, the tasty treats, holiday shopping, decorating the house, and quality family time are just a few reasons we cherish this last month of each year. This time of year also presents us with more time to spend with our daughter and we love filling that time with activities to do together. Here is our list of the 25 crafts ideas and activities that we’ve enjoyed doing together and know that you will enjoy as well!




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1. Christmas Ball Ornament: This project is great for the little ones as it is hands on, easy to create, and can even be turned into a gift for family members! The best part of this activity? It produced NO MESS! Since Mommy was in charge of the glitter portion, we didn’t have that much to clean up when we were finished.

Supplies:

Clear Plastic Ball Ornaments
Small Red, White, and Green Pom Poms
Silver or White Glitter
Red, White, and Green Pony Beads
Silver Bells
Snowflake Glitter
Red, White, and Green Tissue Paper

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To create these incredibly simple Christmas ornaments, gather some holiday themed craft essentials from your local craft store. The ornaments themselves were purchased at our dollar store and they came in a two pack! The tops pop right off and they were just perfect for this project.

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First, we took all of our ornament fillers and placed them in small cups and ramekins for LC to easily select from. Using a small, we secured our ornament so it wouldn’t roll away while LC filled each ornament with her selections from the supplies. To finish these off, we added a small piece of paper inside with LC’s name and year. If you’re looking for a cute little gift to make for family members, this is by far the easiest and your kids will love putting them together!

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2. Paper Plate Stacked Christmas Tree: These stacked Christmas trees are breeze to put together and are a great activity to do with children of all ages. One tree requires only 1 plate, so this is a perfect activity if you are finding yourself low on crafting supplies.

Supplies:

Paper Plates
Green Crayons
Glitter Pens
Stickers ( For Ornaments )
Yellow and Brown Construction Paper ( Optional )

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First, take your paper plate and have your kids color the bottom. Take your colored plate and cut it into 4 pieces. Now take these pieces and stack them one on top of each other ( see picture below ). Glue your plates into place and you’re ready to “trim” your tree!

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After you have decorated your tree with whatever you’ve decided to use, cut out a star and a tree truck to finish your Christmas tree off.

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3. Christmas Wreath: This one can be a little messy, but that’s what makes it a fun project, right? When you’re done creating your wreath, you could easily frame it and have a beautiful, handmade holiday decor item for house to keep and treasure for years to come!

Supplies:

Painting Paper
Green and Red Paint
Scrubber Brush
Gift Bow
Q-Tip

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First, take your piece of painting paper and draw a large circle using a pencil. Use a paper plate to put your green paint on. We always use paper plates to put on paint on during painting projects because it makes for a quick and easy way to clean up afterwards! Let your little ones dip the scrub brush into the green paint and have them try to “paint” around the circle you have created.

Wait for the green paint to dry and add some “holly” around your wreath using a Q-Tip. Once everything is completely dry, add a gift wrapping bow to your wreath a finishing touch. If you plan to frame your child’s work, rather than a gift wrapping bow, simply use a piece of construction paper to create a flat bow.

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4. Christmas Sensory Bin: Our first Christmas themed sensory bin is a calm one. We decided to ditch the bright colors, glitter, and what not and create a sensory activity that had more of a natural feel. We did use some fake elements, but that was purely for safety reasons.

Supplies:

Green, Red, and White Beans
Pine Cones
Spruce Branches ( Fake )
Holly Branches ( Fake )

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Almost all of the elements in this sensory activity were purchased at our dollar store. Since our home backs up to a wooded area, we were fortunate enough to be able to gather pine cones from our own back yard. If you are on the hunt for pine cones yourself, Michael’s always has an amazing selection this time of year and they always smell of cinnamon and spice! Spruce up this sensory activity by adding wooden spoons and bowls to keep with the calming color theme!

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5. Christmas Tree Bowling: Looking for a fun and active game for you and your kids to play with this season? Here is a fun Christmas themed bowling game that you can easily create and enjoy!

Supplies:

10 Plastic or Paper Cups
Green and Yellow Construction Paper
Ball ( you could even use a plastic round ornament ! )
Tape

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Use your green construction paper to cut out 10 Christmas trees and use your yellow construction paper to create 10 stars for your trees. Flip your cups upside down and tape your trees and stars to each cup.

Stack your cups on top of one another, or you could place them in a pyramid shape just like in real bowling. Use your ball, or ornament, and get to playing some Christmas themed bowling!

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6.  Super Simple Candy Cane Craft: Looking for a quick and simple craft to do with your kids? This is it! Needing only two items, you can put together these adorable candy canes together as a great activity to do with each other while also keeping on budget!

Supplies:

Red and White Pony Beads
Green Pipe Cleaners

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To create these simple candy canes, you only need the two items listed above. This activity is a cheap and fun craft idea to do with children of all ages and you can even use them to decorate your presents for the holidays!

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To start, first take one of your pipe cleaners and bend it in the middle to create a V shape. Slide one of your pony beads to the center. This will keep the rest of your beads from sliding off.

Next, hold the two pipe cleaner ends together and slide on the rest of your beads in some sort of color pattern. We did red-white-red-white because, well, were making candy canes! Leave a little space at the end so that you can bend your ends over and secure your beads from falling off this end.

Now, carefully bend one of your ends over to form your candy cane shape. All done! Attach these candy canes to a present using a festive red ribbon and you’ve created a fun, and cheap, accent piece 🙂

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7. Snowman Mask: This super cute project is another simple craft to do with your kids during the holiday season. If you are planning a holiday party with a trendy photo booth, these masks also make for great prop!

Supplies:

Paper Plates
Black Construction Paper
Elmer’s Glue
Cotton Balls
Red and Green Pom Poms
Scissors

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First, take your paper plate and cut out the center. Use your Elmer’s glue to attach your cotton balls around your paper plate.

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Take a piece of black construction paper and cut out a hat shape. Using a piece of red construction paper, cut out a strip to add to your hat. Glue this red strip on to your hat and, if you choose to use them, add some red and green glitter highlights with your glitter pom poms. LC refused to put on her strip of red paper. She said ” it doesn’t need it “. Oh, that lovely phase is starting already! Finish off your mask by taping a popsicle stick to the back of your mask and you’re ready for a photo shoot!

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8. Winter ” Wonderland ” Sensory Bin: If you don’t celebrate Christmas, then this is a wonderful sensory bin activity for you to try out as well. December, usually, brings colder days and this year we are hoping for a white Christmas. Last year, we were pushing 75 degrees! If it happens again this year, this sensory bin may just be our only glimpse at that dream 🙂

Supplies:

White and Blue Rice ( Dyed )
Snowflake Confetti Pack
Large Flake Silver Glitter
Silver Bells
Plastic Ramekins

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Just add all of your materials to a large container for some sensory fun! This exact sensory bin is available on our Etsy shop for purchase. All of our sensory bin kits features a brand new book that relates to the them of the bin. This kit comes with ” A Snowy Surprise ” and you can view this listing HERE and it’s a steal for only $5 !

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9. Homemade Gingerbread Playdough: Playdough is such a great go to project any time of the year, but this gingerbread playdough activity is perfect for this time of year. Our home is full of amazing scents this time of year and your child’s playdough activity can be as well! Here is a great link to another blog’s wonderful gingerbread playdough recipe. We used this recipe for our activity and it turned out perfect!

Looking for other holiday themed playdough recipes? Check out this awesome post that features wintergreen, peppermint, and even sugar cookie playdough recipes !

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10. Number Building With Christmas Trees: If you’ve ever read any of our other posts, you should know that we couldn’t just do fun projects without trying to sneak in some educational ones! The best way to get kids to learn or review material is to do it in a way that they don’t realize they’re doing it!

Supplies:

Christmas Tree Print Out ( FREE 🙂 )
Scissors
Crayons
Sharpie

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You can easily create your own Christmas tree for this activity, but we just printed off the tree from the link because we loved the way it looked and it was one less thing we had to do in our busy schedule. Simply click on the link in the supply list, right-click on the tree image, save it to your computer, and print! Once you have your tree outline, let your little ones color it and add numbers 1 – 5. Cut your tree up into sections and have your children put it back together in the correct order. This is a great activity to keep them busy while you’re trying to get those last few To-Dos crossed off your holiday list!

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11. Snowman Button Counting Activity: Okay, so we decided to sneak in a few educational projects…. This game is great for those little ones beginning to learn and understand number representation AND that to refine those fine motor skills!

Supplies:

Construction Paper
Scissors
Crayons
Glue
Sharpie
Buttons

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To create this game, first take a piece of white construction paper and cut out at least 5 snowmen. Use your sharpie and crayons to draw on their faces to give them some personality! Now take another piece of construction paper, in whatever color you choose, and create one hat to associate with each of your snowman. We used our hats as more of a deck of cards for LC to shovel through to find a number, but you could easily make these hats to scale for each of your snowmen to wear.

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Next, assign each hat a number and write this number using your sharpie. Gather some buttons and you’re ready to play! Draw a hat card with a number on it and have your little one put that many buttons on one of the snowmen and continue this process until either you’re out of buttons or all of your snowmen good to go with their buttons. 🙂

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12. Christmas Sensory Bag: If you’re in search of a nice calming activity for your little ones, this is definitely something we recommended! Sensory bags, or bottles, are great for helping children calm down, cope with anxiety, and to give everyone involved a moment to breathe!

Supplies:

6 Cups of Water
1 Cup of Baby Oil
Silver and Blue Glitter
Plastic Snowflakes
Silver Bells
Gallon Size Ziploc Bag
Clear Packaging Tape

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In a gallon sized Ziploc bag, add 6 cups of water and 1 cup of baby oil. Throw in the glitter, bells, snowflakes, and whatever else you choose. Zip up the bag and use the clear packaging tape to attach it to a glass door or window. If your children are anything like our daughter, this could keep them quite, still, and calm for at least 20 minutes or so, buying you some time to put your feet up and bask in the silence!

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13. Ornament Suncatcher: Suncatchers are so easy to create and they can be included in almost any themed activity or unit you put together. We’ve done them for our ” Exploring Our Ocean ” unit, Halloween projects, and so much more. One roll of clear contact paper goes a long way and it’s an essential we always keep stocked in our craft supplies!

Supplies:

Clear Contact Paper
Red, White, and Green Tissue Paper
Scissors

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To prep for this project, take your tissue paper and cut them into squares or rectangles. You could have your kids help with this part by letting them simply tear the tissue up into smaller pieces. Place all of your tissue paper into a bowl to easily manage the mess.

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Cut off a portion of contact paper from the roll, remove the white paper, and lay this piece of contact paper, sticky side up, on a table or other smooth surface. Now have your kids place the tissue paper all over the contact paper. When finish, cover this piece of contact paper with another piece from your roll, sticky side down. Smooth out any air bubbles and make sure that your paper is secure. Now, using a pair of scissors, cut out some ornament shapes. Use a simple piece of tape to secure these beautiful ” stained glass ” suncatchers to a window or glass door!

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14. Melted Snowman: This is such a great project for toddlers because they can be free to paint where ever they choose on the paper. No guidelines to follow or lines to color in!

Supplies:

Blue, Black, and Orange Construction Paper
White Paint
Paintbrush

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Let your little ones paint on a piece of blue construction paper with white paint. Prior to your painting activity, use your orange and black construction paper to create a carrot noise and charcoal pieces. Before the paint dries, place the carrot nose and various charcoal pieces on the paper. And now you have a melted snowman!

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15. Reindeer Hats: When we went to get our pictures taken with Santa Claus, we were given these really cute reindeer hats. Since we had to wait in a long line to actually get our pictures, that hat didn’t make it long with a fidgety 2-year-old. When we got home, we made these versions of reindeer hats to make everything all better again! These cute hats would also be great for photo booth pictures!

Supplies: 

3 Pieces of Brown Construction Paper
1 Red Pom Pom
Scissors
Elmer’s Glue
Tape
Googly Eyes
Pencil

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Take 2 pieces of your construction paper and cut out two thick strips. Tape these two strips of paper together. Using your 3rd piece of construction paper and a pencil, trace your child’s hands. Cut out the hands and set aside as these will be your reindeer antlers for your hat!

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Glue on your googly eyes and red pom pom to the strip of paper and let dry. You can use either glue or tape to attach your reindeer antlers to the other side of the strip of paper. Once all of the glue is dried, you’re ready to connect the two ends of your strips of paper to form a hat! We used tape for this portion.

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16. Hot Cocoa Sensory Bin: Christmas time screams hot cocoa time! This is a fun sensory bin activity for your little ones, but it also can be used in a dramatic play setting. This idea comes from ” Play and Learn Everyday “. You can check out this fun sensory activity here.

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17. Yarn Wrapped Stars: Here is another great activity for your children to do that will produce another beautiful addition to your Christmas tree!

Supplies:

Cardboard Star Cut Outs
Yellow Yarn
Tape

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We use old boxes for cardboard projects like this. Simply dismantle your box and use a marker or Sharpie to draw the outline you’d like to cut out. For this project, we cut out stars and trees. Once you have your outline, cut out your shape and gather your yarn. Use a piece of tape to attach your yarn and then let your children wrap their shape cut out with the yarn. These types of projects are really great for focusing on those fine motor skills and you get a cute little ornament at the end. Once your children are done wrapping, tie a knot at the end of your piece of yarn and cut.

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18. Popsicle Snowflakes: Here is another great and winter inspired craft to do with the kids this season. You could even do this throughout January and February as well, when you’re stuck in the house on a snowy day! This craft idea comes from ” Kids Craft Room “. You can click here to be taken to their blog post about how to create these adorable snowflakes!

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19. Christmas Tree Crayons: How festive! These cute Christmas tree crayons and incredibly easy to make and they make great party favors for the little ones that attend your Christmas party!

Supplies:

Christmas Tree Silicon Mold ( Found at Michael’s )
Green, Red, and White Crayons ( Leftover or new )

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Preheat your oven to 250. Next, take your crayons and remove all of the wrapping paper from them. Break them up into smaller pieces, either with your hands or by using a knife. Once you have all of your crayon pieces ready to go, place them your silicone tree mold. Pop them in the oven for about 15 minutes. If you find that your crayons have melted down, but you’d like them to be thicker crayons, simply add more crayon pieces at this point and pop them back in the oven for another 15 minutes.

Once they are done, let them cool for at least 45 minutes. Before you try to take them out of the mold, be sure that they are completely cooled. Once you feel they are ready, go ahead and pop them out of the silicone mold.

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This Christmas tree crayon set is available for purchase in our Etsy shop! Click HERE to be taken to this listing. Looking for other specialty crayons already made and ready to go? We’ve got them in our Etsy shop! Click the link below to be taken to our latest crayon listing!

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20. Paper Plate Santa: This cute holiday craft idea comes from ” Krokotak “. You’ve probably seen at least one of their craft videos on Facebook, but if you haven’t, you should totally check out their blog and Facebook page! They are magicians with paper and their projects are incredibly simple to do. Each of their projects features a video that will truly get you inspired to grab the scissors, paper, and tape! Check out this super cute Paper Plate Santa idea by clicking here.

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21. Christmas Tree Busy Bag: Need a little something to keep the kids entertained at the office Christmas party? Make these cute Christmas Tree Busy bags ahead of time! They can decorate their trees over and over and the best part? No Mess! You could even add a few number cards in the bags and turn this into a fun math game 🙂

Supplies:

Green Felt
Red, Green, and White Glitter Pom Poms
Scissors
Ziploc Bag

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All you need to do is cut out a few Christmas tree outlines from your piece of green felt, throw them in a Ziploc bag along with several glitter pom poms, and you’re all set !

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22. Holiday Cards Created By The Kids: We all love those crafts and pictures our children create for us and this is great way to spread their creativity around to family and friends! Let your little ones help this holiday season and have them create their own cards for your loved ones. There isn’t any glue or mess involved with this project and they make such sweet gifts to give those loved ones around you.

Supplies:

Blank Card Stock and Envelope Pack
Red, Green, and Blue Crayons
Lots of Holiday Stickers
Sharpie

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The best gift you could give a grandparent is a handmade card from your children. This is a great project for getting kids, of all ages, involved in the holiday season. For us, we used our sharpie to write a warm holiday greeting and let our daughter do the rest. She covered each card with beautiful drawings and finished them off with a ton of holiday themed stickers! Our dollar store has some great Christmas themed glitter foam stickers right now, so we stocked up on them during our last trip for this activity.

This cards are also a great gift for people outside of your family. We are always going through our clothes and toys and making a trip to the Good Will, so our daughter is already familiar with giving to those that are without. You could easily create a handful of these cards and have your children pass them out to people you come across this holiday season that are either without or are just in need of a sweet and warm message. We’ve given a few to the sweet people we see throughout the year at our grocery store!

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23. Pom Pom Painting: Painting is a project that is always sure to be a hit with the little ones, but change it up and use other items, besides a brush, to paint with! For this project idea, we used glitter pom poms, which gave us really cool patterns and textures.

Supplies:

Painting Paper
Pom Poms
Clothespins
Washable Paint
Sharpie

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To create your pom pom paintbrush, simply clip a clothespin on to a large pom pom. Set out various colors of paint on a paper plate and let your little ones get busy painting!

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VARIATION: Using a sharpie and painting paper, draw various items like Christmas tress, stars, ornament shapes, and so on. Let your little ones paint however they choose on your paper. They don’t need to stay in the lines! Once the paint has dried, cut out your shapes. These would be great as little ornaments for your Christmas tree!

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24. Snow Globe Sensory Bottle: This amazing idea comes from ” No Time For Flash Cards ” and it is sure to keep your little ones happy, calm, and engaged. Simply using a leftover bottle, water, glitter, and a few other items, you can easily create these sensory jars for your kids! Click here to be taken to their site for a list of materials and step by step instructions.

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25.  Cookie Decorating Station: You can’t do a post about Christmas themed crafts, activities, and projects WITHOUT one of those ideas being Christmas cookies! Possibly our favorite part of this season, Christmas cookies and family time go hand in hand! This year, we made our holiday cookies with our daughter and she had a blast helping in the kitchen, but her favorite part was the decorating portion! It may have been because she helped herself to a large amount of sugar, but I’ll call this one a win either way.

Supplies:

Sugar Cookies ( Here is a great recipe )
Holiday Sprinkles
Icing Tubes
1 Can of White Icing

We’ve posted before about how children helping in the kitchen is a great way to find some family time, but to also teach them important life skills and show them how the things they learn in math and science class IS something they will use in the future. Yes, the things I did, or did not, learn in algebra don’t appear in the kitchen, but working with fractions is something that we experience almost every night during the making of dinner. If you find yourself in a situation where your child is struggling in math, helping with measuring or cooking times could be a way to help out and cement this knowledge.

Our daughter is a bit too young for those heavy math concepts, but we use this time to help her practice counting and familiarize herself with the concept of time. LC loves helping in the kitchen, but that’s because she is usually on the hunt for something containing sugar and wants to be front and center in the event something with chocolate shows up!

Using whatever recipe you choose, make your cookies together first. While they are baking set up all of your decorating supplies and a space for your children to work. If you are dealing with smaller children, you make just want to keep this batch for yourself, as sticky and licked fingers will find their way to each and every cookie!

That concludes our list of 25 Christmas themed activities and projects! We hope you get to try a few of these out with your little ones during this holiday season. Don’t forget to scan through our other post from this year and see what fun we have all year long. We hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday season and enjoy each and every second together!

Brittany XOXO

Looking for a great and unique gift for the little ones in your life this Christmas season? Check out our Etsy shop for handmade educational supplies. Check out our listings below!

Also be sure to check out our other Etsy shop, LC Designs, for handmade inspiration decor and specialty items! Check out those listings below!

Exploring The Letter V: Vegetables, Volcanoes, and Violins

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At the beginning of our letter exploration, we start by looking at the letter and tracing this letter with our fingers. During this time, I make the sound that particular letter makes and LC repeats it back to me.We use an alphabet placemat for this portion. We then sing the ABC song, putting emphasis on the letter we will be learning about. Since the school year is back in full swing, I’m not with LC all day anymore. Ugh! We now take about 5 to 7 days to get through each letter. You may find that time frame is either too long, or too short, for your own little one, but it works for us.




The idea behind OUR letter units is to provide opportunities for hands on learning that allow LC to learn each of her letters, the sounds they make, and to make real world connections with these letters, while also touching on other concepts and subject areas. For example, when we were working on the letter A, we learned that the word “apple” starts with A. Rather than just leaving it at that, we took that opportunity to learn more about apples. How they grow, what colors they come in, the different ways we can use them, and so on. There is an opportunity to learn something new every single day and we fully plan on taking advantage of these opportunities. Here are our activity and projects all about the letter V ! Be sure to check out our previous post: ” Exploring The Letter U: Umbrellas and Unicorns “.

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Eating our vegetables has never really been a problem for us, THANKFULLY, but for many parents, the struggle is REAL! If you are finding yourself in that situation, here are some activities and project ideas for learning about vegetables, how they grow, why they are essential to our a well-balanced diet, and to experiment. We’ve listed some of our own project ideas, but we also searched around for other ideas to help children of all ages learn about vegetables and encourage them to eat the rainbow!

Here are the activities we did for this portion of our exploration of the letter V:

Zucchini Muffins

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Zucchini Muffins are a staple in our household. The best part about these tasty snacks? They’re sweet and taste nothing like a vegetable! Which is the goal when trying to your picky eater to get their veggies in for the day. Check out this simple muffin recipe from our post ” Cooking With Toddlers: Yummy Zucchini Muffins “. We promise you won’t be disappointed !

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Last Christmas, we made this adorable felt garden for LC. This is a great dramatic play activity for little ones and it’s actually pretty easy to put together yourself after a quick trip to a craft store. As far are the container for the garden, we used an old diaper box and covered it with fabric. You can find wooden crafts at your local craft store, but using this old diaper box was more convenient for us and allowed us to re-purpose rather than throwing the box out. We didn’t take pictures of the creation process for our box, but here is an AMAZING tutorial post that gives you step by step directions on how you can create your own box. Seriously, this tutorial is amazing and I kind of wish I had it when I made ours last year!

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Vegetable Coloring Sheets – Here is a link to the coloring sheets and “try something new ” chart we used for this portion of our letter exploration unit.

Here are some great links to other blogs and sites for more veggie themed educational connects and project ideas:

How To Teach Nutrition To Kids

23 Books About Vegetables 

Scrub Those Veggies: Sensory Table Play

More Veggie Coloring Pages For Your Toddler

Fruit and Vegetables Activities For Kids

Here are the videos we used for this portion of this unit:

Vegetable Song

Benefits of Eating Fruits and Vegetables For Kids

Learning Vegetables 

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The science and discussion that goes into a properly executed volcano unit is a bit over our 2 year old’s head, but it was still fun introducing her to this subject area. We talked about the basics of a volcano and introduced her to some new words like lava, erupt, and so on. While the concept may be advanced for LC’s age group, the discussion and hands on experience provides an opportunity to build vocabulary and ignite a scientific curiosity!

Here are the activities we did for this portion of our letter V exploration:

Colorful Volcano

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To create your own colorful volcanoes, you will need baking soda, white vinegar, food coloring, dish soap, and several small containers.

First, add your baking soda and dish soap to the ramekins or containers you will be using for your volcanoes. We added about 1/3 of a cup to each container and about 1/2 tbsp of dish soap. Remember that this is a messy project, so be sure to either do this activity outside or on a surface that can easily be cleaned up.

Next, in another container, combine your vinegar and food coloring. When you are all set for your ” explosion ” simply add your vinegar mixture SLOWLY to your baking soda.

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Tissue Paper Volcano

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Simple assembling projects like this focus on building fine motor skills. To do this project, you will need construction paper, in two different colors, red and orange tissue paper, and a glue stick. Simple tear or cut your tissue paper into small pieces and cut out a volcano shape from one of your pieces of construction paper. Glue your volcano on to your other piece of paper and let your little ones get busy adding the ” lava ” to their piece.

Volcano Coloring Sheets – Here is a link to the volcano coloring sheets we used for this portion of our letter exploration unit

Here are the videos we enjoyed for this portion of our letter unit:

Explore Volcanoes With National Geographic 

All About Volcanoes For Kids

Volcano 

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It is never too early, or too late for that matter, to introduce your children to music and various musical instruments. We’ve been talking about different kinds of instruments and what sounds that make, so for this unit we decided to focus on one that doesn’t get that much attention these days!

Here are the activities we did for this portion of our letter unit:

Traditional V For Violin

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Gather some construction paper, glue sticks, scissors, and a sharpie for this project. Select one piece of construction paper that will serve as your background. Make sure that you have a brown piece of construction paper to create your violin. On your piece of brown paper, trace out a violin shape and a bow. You can either free hand this violin or use this link as a template. Once you have your violin and bow outline, cut them out and add the violin’s features using your sharpie. Using another piece of construction paper, in a different color, cut out the letter V and add this detail to your violin. Hand over the glue stick to your little ones and let them assemble their violin piece.

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our unit:

Elmo’s World: Violins 

Classic Sesame Street Clip

Sesame Street – The Letter V 

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And that concludes another letter exploration unit! Thanks for reading about our exploration and we hope you try one of these activities during your own letter of the week units!  Check out our next letter post ” Exploring The Letter W: Whales, Watermelons, and Weather “.

Brittany XOXO

Don’t forget to check out our Etsy shop for Handmade Educational Supplies! We have tons of sensory bin fillers in stock and sensory bin kits already put together for you that includes a brand new book to accompany your sensory activity! Click the link below to be taken to our shop’s main page.

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Looking for some inspiration decor? We have an Etsy shop for that too! Click to the link below to be taken to our inspirational Etsy shop, LC Designs.

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Exploring The Letter U: Umbrellas and Unicorns

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At the beginning of our letter exploration, we start by looking at the letter and tracing this letter with our fingers. During this time, I make the sound that particular letter makes and LC repeats it back to me.We use an alphabet placemat for this portion. We then sing the ABC song, putting emphasis on the letter we will be learning about. Since the school year is back in full swing, I’m not with LC all day anymore. Ugh! We now take about 5 to 7 days to get through each letter. You may find that time frame is either too long, or too short, for your own little one, but it works for us.




The idea behind OUR letter units is to provide opportunities for hands on learning that allow LC to learn each of her letters, the sounds they make, and to make real world connections with these letters, while also touching on other concepts and subject areas. For example, when we were working on the letter A, we learned that the word “apple” starts with A. Rather than just leaving it at that, we took that opportunity to learn more about apples. How they grow, what colors they come in, the different ways we can use them, and so on. There is an opportunity to learn something new every single day and we fully plan on taking advantage of these opportunities. Here are our activity and projects all about the letter U ! Be sure to check out our previous post: ” Exploring The Letter T: Trees, Turtles, and Teeth “.

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We’ll be honest, U was a difficult letter for us. Between thinking of what starts with U that would be interesting to learn about and then thinking up cool ideas to do with those items…. it was definitely a challenge. Thankfully, our little one gets excited about almost anything if you present it to her right! For this unit, we decided that rather than learning ABOUT umbrellas, we just used umbrellas as more of a theme to our letter work this week.

Here are the activities we did for this portion of our letter exploration:

Traditional Letter U Project

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The first project we did for this unit, was this traditional letter project that most kids do in a preschool setting. LC loves messing around with a glue stick any chance she gets, so this simple project was a hit with her. During the creation process, we talked about what an umbrella does and why they are a useful tool.

To create this project, you will need 4 different colored pieces of construction paper, one for the background, 2 colors for the umbrella and definitely a blue piece to represent the rain. Take these pieces of paper and cut out the pieces as seen in the left picture above. Guide your little one in assembling their umbrella piece and let them use a glue stick to attach them items to your background piece of construction paper. We always add a title line when we make projects like this. It’s a great way to familiarize, or introduce text to younger children.

Umbrella Number Match Game –

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Using a few pieces of construction paper, glue, and buttons, we put together this cute matching game for LC to play with. Simple cut out 5 umbrella tops and stems, assemble with glue and add a number to each umbrella. This is the dialogue we used for this games:

” How many buttons does this umbrella need? ”

( 2 ! )

” That is a 2! So let’s find 2 buttons and put them on its matching umbrella ”

For older children, you could ask WHY they think that umbrella needs two buttons and start challenging their thought process. This is a great way to get them to start being able to explain their thought process and why they came to that conclusion. We use this technique all the time in our Kindergarten class and it’s amazing to hear a 5-year-old explain WHY they came up with their answer. This is a great technique to use when you are trying to determine if a child is just remembering facts or truly understands a concept!

Umbrella Coloring Sheets – Here is a link to the coloring sheets we used during this portion of our unit.

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

Umbrella Song

Playdough Videos For Children – How To Make An Umbrella 

 

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Yes, we know, unicorns aren’t real, but this was our way of making the letter U interesting to our little one and grab her attention. We read fairy tales and talked about how similar they are to horses. We also informed LC that unicorns aren’t real animals, but she didn’t believe us for a second. If you do a search on the web for unicorn images, it’s hard to convince a 2-year-old that it isn’t real! If it’s on the internet, it must be true, right? 🙂

Here are the activities we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Building A Unicorn With Shapes

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These funky shape unicorns were actually really fun to make! I will admit they look at little … off ? … but our little one LOVED this project and we’re all about reviewing concepts.

Using white construction paper, we cut out various shapes to form our unicorn and added small touches of color using markers. We colored one of triangles in rainbow colors to represent our unicorn’s horn and colored its feet gold since, well, it IS a unicorn! You could take this project one step further and add yarn or string to add a colorful tail and mane! We assembled our unicorn on a sheet of red construction paper using a glue stick.

Unicorn Coloring Sheets – Here are the coloring sheets we used during this portion of our letter exploration unit.

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

Mermaids and Unicorns In Real Life

Uni The Unicorn Song

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This was a difficult letter to prepare for! The options for the letter U are limited, but even more so with a toddler. We think that we did a pretty good job and since LC can’t stop talking about unicorns or contain her excitement when she does, I’d say that she agrees! We hope that you have enjoyed this unit and will join us next week for ” Exploring The Letter V: Vegetables, Volcanoes, and Violins ” !

Brittany XOXO

Don’t forget to swing by our Etsy shop for handmade educational supplies, including sensory bin fillers and kits! Each of our kits come complete with a brand new book that relates to the theme of the kit. We also love taking custom orders! Click on the link below to be taken to our shop front 🙂

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LC Designs Etsy Shop. Words To Empower, Motivate, and Inspire. Click the link below to be taken to our shop.

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Exploring The Letter T: Trees, Turtles, and Teeth

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At the beginning of our letter exploration, we start by looking at the letter and tracing this letter with our fingers. During this time, I make the sound that that particular letter makes and LC repeats it back to me.We use an alphabet placemat for this portion. We then sing the ABC song, putting emphasis on the letter we will be learning about. Since the school year is back in full swing, I’m not with LC all day anymore. Ugh! We now take about 5 to 7 days to get through each letter. You may find that that time frame is either too long, or too short, for your own little one, but it works for us.




The idea behind OUR letter units is to provide opportunities for hands on learning that allow LC to learn each of her letters, the sounds they make, and to make real world connections with these letters, while also touching on other concepts and subject areas. For example, when we were working on the letter A, we learned that the word “apple” starts with A. Rather than just leaving it at that, we took that opportunity to learn more about apples. How they grow, what colors they come in, the different ways we can use them, and so on. There is an opportunity to learn something new every single day and we fully plan on taking advantage of these opportunities. Here are our activity and projects all about the letter T ! Be sure to check out our previous post: ” Exploring The Letter S: Sleep, Space, and Seahorse “.

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We got lucky during this unit and get to experience the changing of the leaves! Our home backs up to a heavily wooded area, so we get a wonderful hands on experience with this topic. Since fall has arrived, the trees have been changing colors and the beautifully colored leaves have been falling and covering the ground. Such perfect timing once again!

Here are a few of the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

The Seasons in Trees – As stated above, our home is surrounded by trees, so we get to see the changing of seasons up close and personal. Given our recent change in seasons, we thought it would be fun to incorporate this concept will also learning about trees in this unit.

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Using 4 different pieces of construction paper to represent the 4 seasons, we drew outlines of trees and used different colors of tissue paper to create how each tree looks in that particular season. Since our little one is pro at using a glue stick now, we stuck to using that method to attached our tissue paper. Projects like this are a great way to focus on and refine those fine motor skills! While we worked on each of our trees throughout the week, we talked about the seasons and what changes we see in the trees, as well as the world around us. If you are learning about seasons, here are 5 other wonderful activities to do with your little ones.

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Autumn Trees

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Since we were right in the middle of the leaves changing, we thought it would be fun to do a fall themed activity during this unit by creating an autumn colored tree using a fun painting technique. We used a scrub brush, dipped in paint, and a basic outline of tree and it’s bare branches to create this beautiful tree. You can pick up a scrub brush for this activity, and to use in future projects, at your local dollar store!

Letter T Coloring Sheet – Here is the link to the coloring sheets we used for this portion of our letter unit.

Here are the videos we used for this letter T unit:

Learn Trees

Curious George: Curious About Trees

The Wind In The Trees

Check out all of our fall themed projects in our post ” 25 Days of Fall: 25 Craft Ideas and Hands On Projects For Toddlers and Preschoolers “. This post features 25 different ideas for fall themed crafts and projects including sensory bin activities, painting projects, educational connections, and more!

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LC has really taken on a role of a turtle lately and wears it proudly. Daddy started comparing her quick sand speed to that of a turtle and now she prides herself on being authentic and moving as slow as possible at the least convenient times. Besides her ability to slow down time, she really is interested in turtles and loves looking at them. Over the summer, we had a pet turtle for a whole 20 minutes after Poppy found one trying to escape under our fence. We contemplated keeping our shelled friend, but after a quick search on what it takes to care for a turtle, we decided that this was just too much for us and our 2 year old. We released him back into his natural habitat ( the wooded area behind our home ) and that was that. Since we couldn’t keep the turtle, we thought we’d make it up to LC during this unit and just learn all about these green guys!

Here are the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter exploration unit:

Paper Plate Turtles

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We created these super simple paper plate turtles during this unit, not only to cement our knowledge of turtles, but also to review and work with shapes.

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To create your own turtles, you will need a few pieces of green construction paper, scissors, a paper plate, a glue stick, googly eyes, green crayons or markers, and a sharpie.

First, flip your paper plate over and color the bottom portion. Next, using your green construction paper, cut out 4 legs, a head, and several shapes ( as seen in the picture above ). Now attach your legs and head to your ” turtle shell ” and glue on your turtle’s googly eyes and maybe even add a little smile!

Now let your little one add their green shapes to the shell, but remember to use this time to talk about the shapes and their characteristics, i.e. how many sides each one has, does a circle have sides?, and so on. For us, we laid the shapes out on our table and asked LC to find a specific shape and add it to her turtle’s shell. We then talked about why she thought that was the shape we asked for. This creates an opportunity for a child to learn or review information, but it also allows them to expand their thought process and answer WHY that is the shape they are looking for.

Sand Writing The Letter T – During our ” Letter R ” unit, we created a rainbow sand writing activity using a cookie tray, sand, rainbow paper, and a pack of alphabet cards. For this unit, we just changed on the paper for a bright green sort and again, worked on our letter formations. Here is a link to this fun and colorful sand writing activity!

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Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

Sea Turtles – Animals For Kids

Sea Turtle By The Whiz Pops 

I Had A Little Turtle Nursery Rhyme

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Teaching little ones early that their chompers are incredibly important is a great move for parents. Keeping your teeth and mouth healthy can be very beneficial to your overall health. Since we adults have experienced first hand what happens when you don’t take care of your teeth properly, it’s critical that we pass on to our daughter just how important dental hygiene is. Not to mention just how expensive it can be to fix an avoidable issue! We’ve been brushing LC’s teeth since the first two popped out and this is essential part of our bedtime routine has always been one of her favorites. She’s now to the point where she wants to help and brush on her own, with a bit of help from Daddy.

Here are a few of the activities and projects we did for this portion of our letter T exploration unit:

Mouth Care Routine – Each morning and night, Daddy and LC brush their teeth together. I think it’s cute and during the summer, when Daddy didn’t get to see LC as much, this was a great opportunity for bonding between them. During this unit, we talked about each step and why it’s important to keeping our teeth healthy. We also talked about the foods that we ate and why we should avoid certain things. LC doesn’t drink juice for several reasons, mainly being that it can be expensive and we feel that it isn’t necessary, but also because it can do plenty of damage to little one’s teeth. Yes, we’re aware that these baby teeth ARE going to fall out no matter what you do, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have to care for them while they are around.

Any dentist will tell you that the care of your baby teeth can directly effect your adult teeth and the health and well being of your child. Plus, the habits you instill now are incredibly beneficial in the long run when your little ones grow up and are taking care of their own teeth.

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Marshmallow Teeth Counting Game – Speaking of bad things for your teeth…. We worked with numbers as well during this portion of our unit and created this fun math game for LC to play with. We may, or may not have decided on using marshmallows to bribe her to play…

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For this game, you will need at least 10 marshmallows, construction paper, a sharpie, and a set of dice. First, fold your piece of construction paper in half and cut out a circle. Be sure to cut in a way that lets your two circles stay attached, as this is suppose to look like a mouth. Next, open your piece of paper up and draw 5 large circles on either side where teeth would be.

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We started with all of our marshmallows in a small bowl and let LC roll one the dice. We counted the dots on the dice to identify the number of ” teeth ” we’d be adding to our mouth. One by one, LC put all of her teeth in place. Once we had a full set of teeth in our ” mouths “, we then rolled the dice to determine how many teeth our little mouth was going to lose. This is a great game for working with numbers, but it also presents an opportunity for your little ones to start their journey into understanding addition AND subtraction. Not all of our teeth made it to the end since our little one loves marshmallows, but loves feeding them to the dogs even more!

Here are the videos we used for this portion of our letter unit:

Elmo Brush Your Teeth

How To Brush Your Teeth Properly For Kids

Brush Your Teeth Song

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And that concludes our Letter T unit! This week, our little one learned so much about how important her teeth are and that if you don’t take care of them, you don’t get to enjoy all of the wonderful and yummy foods out there. We also devoted a good amount of time to working on letter formation as LC has re-discovered her love for sand. It’s great when your little one think they are just playing and having fun, but you know that they are also learning and building skills for the future ! Tune in next week for our Letter U unit: Exploring The Letter U: Umbrellas and Unicorns.

Brittany XOXO

Be sure to stop by our Etsy shop for handmade educational supplies! Click either of the images below to be taken to shop.

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Check out our inspirational Etsy shop, LC Designs. You can find framed canvas pieces, magnets, and more! We also take custom orders as well 🙂 Click the link below to be taken to this shop.

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