Contact Paper Art

Here is a super simple art activity that both my daughter and my preschool students with special needs enjoy greatly! 

Contact Paper Art
  1. Cut a piece of contact paper off the roll.
  2. Attach it to an easel or the fridge with clips.  (sticky side facing out)
  3. Gather collage materials to stick to the contact paper.
  4. Stick away!!!
(Great hair day, I know!)

Most of my students have sensory aversions and my daughter just doesn't care to get her fingers sticky with glue (covered in mud is fine...just no glue...go figure???).  Anyway, this activity just cuts out the step of using glue, but still allows the child to make an individualized masterpiece!  

Some contact paper art themes we have done in the past:
nature walk collection
pink things
cut paper
odds & ends found around the house


Encouragement from the Discouraged

Does browsing through other mom blogs ever get you somewhat discouraged?

Well, I just caught myself getting discouraged while reading a blog from a girl that I went to college with about 10 years ago.  She had pictures of her daughter's fabulously beautiful playroom and activity ideas that I could only dream of replicating for my daughter.

I started thinking how I could make Macy's room look like that room, and how happy Macy would be if she had that garden center near her window.

Next thing I know, I am knocked out of my daydream of a picture perfect playroom by sounds of laughter and wonderful dramatic play going on in her current bedroom.  Macy doesn't need that fabulously beautiful playroom to be happy, and she also doesn't need that garden center to learn about plants.  Her markers are housed in a leftover swiffer sweeper refill box instead of a designer box and her kitchen set treasure was someone else's junk.  All that said, she is happy and healthy, and she doesn't feel like she is missing out on anything, so I shouldn't either!!!

I pray that this blog never, ever, ever discourages you!  It is surely not meant to at all!  Please, know that we are a normal family that does normal things, and our house is by no means picture perfect.  Most of our activities throughout the day are not planned out to a tee...we fly by the seat of our pants most of the time, and have fun doing it!

Enjoy being the best mother you can be and relish every second you have with your precious children.  Remember that your kiddo thinks you hung the moon, God loves you, and that's all that matters!


Quick Daddy's Day Picture Book Keepsake

How to ~

  1. Find lots of pictures of your little one and his/her daddy doing different things together.
  2. Attach each picture to a half sheet of construction paper or card stock.
  3. Write the following sentence on the bottom of each page:  "I like to ___________ with Daddy!"
  4. Punch holes
  5. Tie Ribbons to hold the book together.
  6. Done!  Keepsake!  Early Reader!  Reminder of how important playing and learning with Daddy (grandpa, uncle, big brother, special friend) really is, which is definitely a Teachable Moment in my book!


Magnetic Reward System

I apologize for the lack of posts here lately, and after reading my post, you will probably be able to guess why I have been absent from the blogging world for awhile!

About a year ago, I came up with a magnetic reward system for Macy that she just absolutely loves.

     We stuck with it for a month or so.

               Her behavior improved immensely. 

                         We gave it up.

That leads us to the past month or so of not so wonderful behavior coming out of my otherwise sweet little 4 year old.  

She was very unwillingly cleaning her room when she stumbled upon her "Smiley Thing."  

AND, I was like...Oh My Goodness, why on Earth did I not think of this earlier???

She is pumped to come up with new rewards to earn and even more pumped to start earning the rewards that we used last year again.  
(Which is really funny to me, because we have been doing most of those "rewards" anyway, but the earning of them is the exciting part, I guess.)

Anyhow, here it is...the simplest, yet most exciting reward system to ever hit our household...

The Smiley Thing
1.  Cut the silly smiles off of the box of Smiles fruit snacks...ya know the Walmart brand?
2.  Glue them to magnets.  I used the advertisement magnets that we had from pizza places and eye doctors located in the town that we no longer live in.
3.  Put them on the inside of a metal cake pan.
4.  When you catch your child doing something good, tell them to put a smile on the front on the pan.
5.  When they get a predetermined amount of smiles on the front of the pan, they earn a prize.
6.  I printed out pictures of prizes that Macy can earn.  She picks one for each day and it goes on the refrigerator.  They are things such as an extra book at bedtime, a trip to the park, or an extra special trip to her Granny's house.

One of the reasons this happens to be the best reward system for us is that it is extremely portable.  We take it in the car wherever we go.  It just doesn't work so well, if you have to remember to give smiles when you get back home from a long outing, so the smiles just come with us!

I hope this helps some of you.  It sure works for us to reward the good rather than harp on the bad, and this is a reminder for parent and child alike...we want smiles at our house!!!

Fun Ways to Count to 100

  1. Help your kiddo roll pennies.
  2. Around the dinner table, each person says a number.  Keep going around and around until you get to 100.
  3. Write the numbers on those cute little card stock shapes that teachers use for calendar days.  Throw them in the air to mix them up.  Then, put them in order on the floor.
  4. Make a job out of it.  "Mommy needs 97 paper clips for work tomorrow.  Will you put them in a bag for me, please?"  OR  "Daddy needs 84 screws for a project tomorrow.  Will you help me count them out?"
  5. Cut egg cartons in half lengthwise.  Stick them together, decorate, and make a REALLY long caterpillar art project.
  6. On a road trip, see who can spot the next red car first.  Every time you see a red car, yell out the next number.  How long does it take for the whole family to find 100 red cars?
  7. Use a 100 chart.  Try this one.  Roll dice.  Count the dots on the dice.  Cover up that many numbers on your chart with cheerios.  Keep rolling until all of the numbers on the chart are covered up.
  8. Count to 100 over the course of a few days.  Count out 20 skittles today.  Tomorrow, count out 20 more skittles but start with the number 21 instead of 1.  Keep going each day until you reach 100.  
  9. Go to the park to play on the swings.  Each time you swing forward, shout out the next number until you get to 100.
  10. Cut out numbers from magazines and newspapers.  Glue them in order to make a huge number line.

        Happy Counting!

Princess History

I know that this is going to sound really silly, but one of my favorite things about being a mom is the fact that I have an excuse to watch all of my favorite Disney movies over and over again.  I have to introduce her to all of the classics, right!?!  

Of course, being a little girl, she is completely and utterly into all of the princesses.  We just recently visited Disney World, ate with the princesses and had her picture made with all of them.  It was so much fun!!!  

I am quite convinced that I enjoyed the entire trip way more than she did!

So, anyway, where does the Teachable Moment come into play here, you ask? 

William & Kate, of course!

I had the privilege of watching a real prince and princess get married with MY little princess sitting in my lap.  She was beyond excited when I explained to her that they were actually real and that this was not a Disney movie.  During the wedding, I gave her a preschool version of a history lesson about England and the Queen.  We had fun pointing out all of the ladies' extravagant hats, and our favorite part was watching the newlyweds in their horse-drawn carriage.   

Hopefully, my little princess will remember this piece of history-in-the-making for quite some time!

A Thankful Birthday Girl

We had the BEST 4th Birthday Party for our little one last week!!!  It definitely didn't look like it came off of a birthday party blog or anything, but she LOVED it and that's what counts!  After all of our guests had left and after jumping on the rented princess castle bouncer for another 3 hours, she gave me  the biggest hug ever and told me how she loved her party.  THAT, made all of the planning and running around completely worth it!    

At the party, she was so excited to open all of her presents, and, of course, we encouraged her to say, "Thank You!" to each person for her gifts.  But, like most preschoolers, she was overwhelmed and excited and had so many other things to think about that I'm not for sure that the "thank you's" were completely sincere.  

The next day, she looked through each of her new gifts and made for sure that she knew who each one was from.  She admired all of them for quite some time and said how much she loved them all.  

I wanted to send thank you cards to everyone and first thought of those cute picture cards.  Ya know, the ones like everyone sends for Christmas?  I started to make some online and then realized that Macy had nothing to do with the process, so I deleted them and off we went to the craft room.  

We just used plain construction paper, and then she drew a picture on each one and also added a few stickers.  The pictures were relevant to each person and completely decided on by Macy.  For some she drew the gift that she was given by that person, but for some she chose to draw something meaningful for the person it was meant for.  Then, she told me what she wanted to say to each person, and I wrote it down for her.  Simple as that!  Thank you cards from the heart of a preschooler!  Precious!

James 1:17 ~ Every good and perfect gift is from above , coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.

Almost Wordless Wednesday ~ Cute Frustrations

Teachable Moment = Me to Macy:  "See how frustrating it is when others don't listen to you?  Let's always try to be good listeners!"

           Happy Wednesday!

10 for Tuesday ~ Fun with Rain Puddles

  1. Guess if objects will float or sink and then try them out in the puddles.
  2. Float paper boats.
  3. Use watercolors or chalk paint to paint the driveway or sidewalk.  Use the puddles to rinse off the brushes before changing colors.
  4. Practice the long jump as you jump over puddles.
  5. Talk about depth and use a ruler to measure how deep each puddle is.
  6. Puddles are great target practice for pebbles!
  7. Play a magnetic fishing game.  Just tie some yarn with a magnet on the end to a stick.  Then, put some magnetic fish in the puddles...try the dollar store or just make your own.
  8. Use the water to help make a mud pie.  I think this is a lost art!
  9. Use a small cup to scoop up the water from a puddle.  Pour the water into a watering can and use it to water house or porch plants.
  10. Put on your rubber boots and splash!!!
In Ontario, April 27th is National Puddle Day.  It is a day set aside to honor those children whose lives are cut short.  Everyone is encouraged to wear their rubber boots and jump in puddles.  What a great way to remember children!  

My neighbor looked at me crazy for allowing my daughter to splash in rain puddles the other day.  I really don't know why.  I'm sure we all can remember how much fun splashing in puddles was when we were kids!!! I hope you enjoy splashing in puddles this Spring and take the opportunity to make it a Teachable Moment!

Easter Egg Hunt with Letter Scramble

Do you need a fun, seasonal, hands-on way to practice spelling words or sight words?  

Try an Easter egg hunt!  

  1. Just make a list of the words your child is working on.
  2. Assign each word a color of Easter egg.
  3. Write each word out in big letters.
  4. Cut the words apart by letter.
  5. Put one letter in each egg.  
  6. Hide the eggs.
For example, for the word "THE" cut a T, H, and E out and put each letter in a separate yellow egg.  Then, for the word "AND" cut an A, N, and D out and put each letter in a separate pink egg.  Hide the 6 eggs, or as many eggs needed to cover the spelling or sight word list.

Now, have your child go on a hunt to find all of the eggs.  Let him/her sort the eggs by color, open them up, and try to make words out of the letters.  If this is too much of a challenge, there is nothing wrong with providing your child with a word list to help.  A word card could also be provided for each color set.  Then, your child will just have to match the letters to what they see on the word card.

     Happy Hunting!

Look Up, Look Down

I know that children's books without words have many benefits and definitely have a place in literacy education, however, I have never personally liked them very much...


Macy and I went to the library the other day.  We have been really busy lately, so I was in a pretty big hurry and just let her pick whatever 10 books she wanted.  Normally, we meander around, take our time, and I look through the books first to make for sure they will serve some sort of purpose for us or at least be somewhat enjoyable.  Well, I didn't this time...pick 10 books and try to hurry, sweetie.  Mommy needs to get going.

Anyway, she picked this book called Look Up, Look Down with no words at all and photographs taken by Tana Hoban.  

We had the best time with this book!!!
Look Up, Look Down
I would have never thought of presenting an idea like this to my daughter.  Tana Hoban took pictures of random things such as a hot air balloon and a crate full of bottles.  The pictures were either taken with the camera looking up at the object or looking down at the object.  It is just one of those things that you typically wouldn't think of to teach your children unless maybe you are a photographer or an art teacher.

To my surprise, it was a tough concept for Macy, but she loved it!  I have to say that I enjoyed it just as much as she did.  As her mother, I have never witnessed her struggle in learning, so I had never gotten the opportunity to see her try so hard to understand something and then watch the little light bulb turn on in her head.  It was amazing and, oh, so much fun!  

We looked the book through 3 or 4 times, and then she was off to take her own 
look up and look down pictures.         

Beginning Sounds

The time is almost here!

I can't believe how quickly it came!


Macy is now interested in letters, their sounds, and how things are spelled...oh, exciting times are sure to follow!  When we are riding in the car, she asks what letter everything we pass starts with.  Then, we have to say the word accenting the first sound.  Then, she wants me to spell it for her.  

She has also really enjoyed Old MacDonald had a Farm lately, so we are spelling all of the animals in the song, too.  She can't get enough of spelling!

For an active activity at home, I took out the trusty alphabet blocks and some of her favorite items from around the house.  I give her an item, and she has to decide which sound/letter it starts with.  I only give her 3 or 4 letter/sound block choices at a time to make it a little easier but still challenging.  

Tomorrow, I plan on playing I spy with her using beginning sounds.  I spy with my little eyes something that starts with the b sound, etc.

Computer games are a favorite at our house, so here is a link to some letter/sound games that are pretty easy to navigate for a preschooler...who am I kidding, she can navigate this computer better than I can sometimes!      

      Happy Reading!  

Creative Writing with Greeting Cards

I am so excited about being one of the featured blogs on Welcome Wednesday sponsored by Take It From Me!  Thanks so much to all of you for taking the time to hop over!  I hope you enjoy browsing my blog and find a new idea or two to share with your children, grandchildren, students, or even the random next door neighbor...our kids need all the support they can get these days.

When teaching creative writing or journaling, you will always have a student or two that can never think of something to write about.  Here is a cute idea to help them get past that...
  • Cut the picture part off of several greeting cards.  Some of my favorites include animals.  Ya know the one with a bloodhound driving an old truck or the little bitty, white dog that's having a bad hair day???
  • Take a page protector and insert 4 card pictures into it.  (front, back, top, bottom)
  • Give each child a page protector and let them pick a picture to write about.  
 Some of the pictures you find on cards are just adorable, and I have yet to have a student elementary all the way to high school not find something to write about after looking at the silly cards.  They enjoy this activity so much, and can't wait for me to get new pictures for them to write about.

For younger children or those that are not able to write, you can modify this activity a little and still get some great use out of your old greeting cards.
  • Let them pick their favorite card
  • Have them tell you a few things about the card.  
  • Write down what they say for them
  • Let them draw a picture to go with their writing.  They can either draw the exact picture or maybe what they think will happen next or what happened right before the picture was taken.  


Spring Counting Folder Games

Macy has been counting up a storm lately!  Forwards & Backwards ~ English & Spanish.  So, for those rainy days when you need something extra, here are some very simple Spring folder games that you can make at home to help your kiddos work on their counting skills.

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

  • Find 10 birds in magazines to cut out (or draw them, or use a bird-shaped notepad, whatever works!) and glue them in the folder.  Write one number on each bird.  Give your child jellybeans and ask them to place the correct number of eggs on each bird.
  • Draw some ladybugs on the folder.  Make sure that each bug has a different amount of spots.  Cut out some green leaves from construction paper and write a number on each leaf.  Have your children match each leaf to a corresponding ladybug.
  • Draw several inchworm heads on the folder.  Write a different number on each inchworm's nose.  Give your child buttons and ask them to make each inchworm longer using the buttons.
  • Draw several flowers on the folder but leave off the petals.  In the middle of each flower write a number.  Provide your child with paper petals or even real petals to put around each flower.  

          Happy Counting!    

I Won! I Won! I Won!

I'm so excited that Loves2Read has awarded me with The Stylish Blogger Award!!!  It just made my day!

I hope you take time to visit her blog.  She does some great book reviews.  I especially enjoy her reviews on children's literature!  Click here to go to her children's lit page!

Receiving this award reminded me of the wonderful feeling that we all get when we are acknowledged for hard work.  Which then, reminded me to try harder to find time/energy/patience to acknowledge my daughter for her hard work, however trivial it may be, so that she can get this wonderful feeling, as well.  

Thanks for the reminder, Loves2Read!!!

The first rule of accepting The Stylish Blogger Award states that I need to tell my readers 7 new things about me, so here it goes...

  1. My favorite subject in school was math, but my favorite subject to teach is reading.
  2. I took clogging lessons when I was in college and loved it!
  3. I don't remember the last time I read a book without pictures. (excluding the Bible)
  4. I love going to Branson, MO for vacation.
  5. I am a firm believer in the saying, "There's no place like home."
  6. I absolutely love teaching children but hate working in a school district.
  7. I can still sing-a-long with every word to the Rainbow Brite tape Paint a Rainbow in Your Heart.
The second rule states that I must name 7 new blogs to receive The Stylish Blogger Award.  I have gotten inspiration, fresh starts and new knowledge from these 7 blogs, and I appreciate them greatly!

Gardening with my Preschooler

I have always wanted to grow a vegetable garden, and we are finally doing it!  Macy is so excited and ready to help with every part of the process.  I know this is going to be an awesome learning experience for the whole family.

Macy just loves to be outside, no matter what the activity is, so it didn't take much to get her enthusiastic about the project.  I did, however, want to prep her a little before we began, so we read some books about gardening and also watched a storybook movie that came on TV.  The movie, Planting a Rainbow, is actually a book, as well, by Lois Ehlert.

Even though the book is about flowers instead of vegetables, it was still a great resource to get her pumped about all the pretty colors that we will be able to grow in our garden.  

Not only will we plant a rainbow, but we will be able to eat a rainbow of veggies, too!

I also found this page that lists some great children's books about gardening:

Actually, Macy's favorite book came from the library and wasn't on the above list.  It is called Ten Seeds by Ruth Brown.  It is a very simple book about a little boy planting 10 seeds.  Different things in the environment come and destroy the seeds one-by-one, such as a slug, a cat, and a ball.  It counts down from 10 to 1 but in the end one flower prevails and gives the little boy 10 new seeds.  Very simple, but a great book.

<em>Ten Seeds</em> [Book]

We also planted some seeds indoors.

Crayola has indoor greenhouses for children.  Macy had fun with her Granny watering the little dirt packs and then inserting the tiny seeds. 

 Danonino Yogurt is giving away a tiny seed pack with each 6 pack of yogurt purchased.  Our seeds were chives, and we planted them directly into a clean danonino yogurt cup.

After all of that, we tilled the dirt for our garden with lots of help from Macy to get the grass out of the dirt!  We have also visited several plant stores to check everything out.  We will definitely have to invest in some of the absolutely adorable child-sized gardening tools in the near future.  They have put Macy's excitement over the top!  

Who wouldn't want a watering can that looked like this!?!

We can't wait for the planting and harvesting to begin!  I'll keep you posted...

I'm also enjoying a little blog hopping today!

And the Winner is...

The winner of Everyday Craft:  Fun Stuff to Make From Everyday Objects is Crystal (Ginger on GFC)!!!  


To everyone who became a new follower and/or posted a comment:  I appreciate you VERY MUCH!!!  I wish I had more books to give away.  I hope you all enjoyed the Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop...I sure did!

Sensory Exploration ~ Touch

They aren't just pulling your earrings and reaching in the toilet water for nothing...they are learning about their new and crazy world!!!

So, here are some fun ways to engage your little one's sense of touch...
(without ripping your earlobe or ingesting the forbidden!)  
  1. Put some shaving cream in a zip lock baggy.  Put in a few drops of food coloring but don't squish it around to change the color just yet.  Instead, let your little one do the squishing.  Fun, yet non-messy!
  2. Sit in the grass with shorts on.  (don't forget that legs can feel, too and help us learn about our world, as well)
  3. Make your own touch and feel book with scraps such as fabric, carpet, aluminum foil, curly ribbon, cotton balls, sand paper, etc.  You can hot glue the scraps onto pages in one of those dollar store picture albums. 
  4. Put objects in a shoe box with a hole cut just big enough for your little one's hand to fit through.
  5. Finger paint ~ Yes, it's messy, but so worth the effort when you get those priceless pictures!  As the weather gets warmer, don't forget you can also enjoy art outside in swimsuits and then just hose off.  Twice the fun!!!
Here is our Touchable Teachable Moment from this weekend.  What fun we had with my precious nephew!!!  (shhh!!! Don't tell his mommy & daddy about the mess!)

I hope you get to enjoy a Touchable Teachable Moment with your little one this week!!!

Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway

I am so excited to be participating in the Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop!!!

I will be giving away a copy of
Everyday Craft:  Fun Stuff to Make From Everyday Objects
By Amber Carvan of

Macy and I just love the crafts that Amber does with her children, so I decided to buy one of her mini-books to enjoy even more crafting fun!  When I bought the book, it was BOGO, so I am excited to pass the extra on to one of you!!!

All you have to do to enter is become a follower and leave a comment saying that you did!  If you are already a follower, then just leave a comment.  Simple as that!  I'll randomly pick a winner on the 21st to be announced on this blog.  I will notify the winner via message, as well, and he/she will have 48 hours to send me their mailing address to receive a copy of the mini-book.  Good luck, happy crafting and enjoy those Teachable Moments that crafting inevitably brings!  

St. Patrick's Day Activities for Preschoolers

  • Sort & Count the marshmallows in Lucky Charms cereal 
  • Cut a green bell pepper in half, dip in paint and stamp on paper to make a shamrock print
  • Read That's What Leprechauns Do by:  Eve Bunting

  • Search for 4 leaf clovers outside
  • Make a rainbow out of Fruit Loops and glue 
  • Search for Gold ~ hide gold covered chocolates and let your little one find them
That's what we have planned for St. Patrick's Day.  How about you?  What fun stuff do you and your little ones do to celebrate/learn about St. Patrick's Day?

A Clean Room with Sight Words

I have had all that I can take of my almost-4-year-old's messy room, so after spending practically the ENTIRE day organizing it for her, I have decided to try something that preschool teachers everywhere have been doing forever.  Why I have not tried this before, I have no idea...especially since I am one of those preschool teachers!

I have labeled her shelves and baskets with a picture and word of what goes on each one.  

She helped, of course, with gluing and picking her favorite color for the background, pink.  She was very excited to help tape the labels on, as well.  

I hope it works...

Use Your Words ~ Language Game

A fun way to get your children to use more words (and learn new words in the process) is to play an easy guessing game with picture cards.  All you need is a bunch of cards with simple pictures on them, like coat, apple, rubber duck...anything, really!  

You can use cards from a Memory game or you could just make your own from photos, magazines, or even clip-art.  

In a 2 player game, it is noncompetitive.  Each person takes a turn to draw a card, describe the picture, and try to get the other player to guess the picture.  

For example, if you draw a card with a banana on it, you might say, "It is a yellow fruit that you peel, and monkeys like them, too."  If your child gives up on a picture, take the opportunity to make a Teachable Moment and help her come up with words to say to describe the picture.  This can be a great word-learning experience!    

In a multi-player game, it is a competitive game to see which player can get the most cards.  If you guess a picture, then you get to keep that card.  

For a little extra enrichment, label each card under the picture.  This way, you will be exposing your children to the written language as well, but still allowing non-readers to play.

Snapfish Picture Books

If you haven't already tried it, I encourage you to go to and make picture books for your children.  They are amazing!  You just put in your own pictures and captions, and then they show up in your mailbox.  It is a marvelous way to encourage your children in the love of reading!

Macy revisits her picture books all the time.  She loves to read about herself and look at her pictures over and over and over again.  You can make them in anyway you want.  My next project is to make a book for her featuring our recent Disney World trip.  She always learns the words to her own picture books so much faster than regular old storybooks, and it is like a scrapbook and storybook all in one!  What could be better?  

Thank you, God, for Hand-Me-Downs!

Thank you God for loving me and thank you God for blessing me.  Thank you God for making me whole and saving my soul!

I would say that I am a pretty thankful person, and I definitely know that I have a lot to be thankful for.  One thing I am thankful for is that my daughter is generally quite thankful herself.  Every once in awhile, we will get a big trash bag full of hand-me-down clothes from cousins, and Macy goes wild with thankfulness!  She helps me sort them and hang them up and is so proud to tell everyone who gave them to her.  

Just this week, we were given the ultimate hand-me-down...

drum roll, please...

a Pink Barbie Mustang!    

Thankful is an understatement!!!  She is so excited!!!

God gives us all kinds of wonderful blessings...hand-me-downs included!  One of the biggest blessings of all is the opportunity to have reminders from your children (Parental Teachable Moments) to be thankful and happy!

Bang! for Sight Words

Macy has all of a sudden become interested in the words on the pages in books, and, oh, the teacher is coming out in me!!!  When I taught 1st - 3rd grades special education, my favorite thing to teach was reading, and my students loved working on their sight words.

Our favorite game to play with sight words was called Bang!

  • Make lists of the sight words you want your kiddo to work on
  • Break the lists into groups of 10.  Each set of 10 is a different color.  So, you have 10 red words, 10 pink words, 10 blue words and so on.
  • Write the 10 red words on red construction paper and cut them up.
  • Put the 10 words in a coffee can...we decorated ours.
  • Also, put 2 pieces of paper in the can that say, "Bang!"  You can change the word, if that word leads to violence in your world, but it was just a fun, silly word for us.
  • Pass the can around to each child.  (back and forth between child & parent works fine, too)
  • On your turn, draw a word and try to read it.  If you read it correctly, you keep the card.  If you miss, put it back in the can.  If you draw Bang!, then you must put ALL of your cards back in the can except for Bang! which goes in the lid of the coffee can.  (Each Bang! is only chosen once and never put back in, so that the game will end!)  
  • Whoever has the most words when the can is empty is the winner.
As your children get better at the words, add 10 new words of a different color along with a couple more Bang! cards.  This is a great game to play, because even if you know all the words, you may still not win.  Therefore, no one gets discouraged.  Enjoy!

Precious Childhood Collections

Does your kiddo like to pick up everything on walks from leaves to sticks to rocks and everything in between?  Well, Macy sure does!!!  We ALWAYS have to take a basket on our walks, sometimes even if we are just walking to the mailbox!

Lately, she has been really into collecting rocks.  We pick them up everywhere.  Heck, we have even pulled the car over to score a good rock or two!

So, to make a long story short...I bought this book to help with all the questions about the different types of rocks, and, well, just to make a Teachable Moment out of our basket of rocks!  This momma might know a lot about literacy and mathematics, but put a rock in front of me, and, well, it's just a rock!

Smithsonian Rock and Gem by Bonewitz, Ronald Louis, Carruthers, Margaret, Efthim, Richard, 9780756633424

We are planning to go on some really big rock hunt road trips to find even prettier rocks and then learning a thing or two together while matching our rocks to rocks in the book.

It should be a great Teachable Moments' Adventure for the whole family!

We are also enjoying a little hopping with...