Thursday, April 29, 2010

Wet n Wild

It was another day packed with undersea adventures!  We made a starfish to add to our ocean, played with some sea creatures in the sensory tub and danced like the waves.
To make our starfish, I first drew a star shape on a piece of construction paper.  Eva then painted on it using various colors.
While the paint was still wet, we sprinkled some gold glitter on too.  This was one fancy starfish!
When he was dry, I cut him out and he joined his buddies in the sea.
We got a little wet today too (in more ways than one considering the way the potty training is going!).  I filled the sensory tub with water and added some bath toys, sponges and a pitcher.  Eva had a blast squeezing her new bath buddies and the sponges.
But her favorite thing to do was to scoop water from the tub and pour it into another container.  She'll be pouring her own juice in no time!
We got some movement in today as well.  I cut some strips of blue and green tulle and we danced to the soundtrack from The Little Mermaid.  We pretended the tulle was waves and moved it fast or slow depending on the tempo of the music.  Eva also did some free-styling.
Later on we realized the tulle moved like a jelly fish when we balled it up and threw it so Eva pretended she was a lobster and practiced catching it with her "claws".  (I got to be a pelican but thankfully, I didn't have to catch it with my mouth.)
Some one will be sleeping really well tonight after all the dancing and fun (and hopefully Eva will too!).

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Jellyfish and Jello

We were busy today!  We made a jellyfish, an ocean snack, played with felt fish and began potty training.  To make the jellyfish, Eva used a loofa to paint a paper bowl.  She choose yellow and red paint and went to town.  I love how the colors look together.

While that was drying, we headed into the kitchen to make a simple ocean snack.  All you need is blue gelatin (we used Jello Berry Blaster), one cup of boiling water, one cup of cold water and some gummy fish (we used Finding Nemo fruit snacks).  Start by combining the boiling water and jello mix, then stir.
Then add the cold water and stir again.
Pour the mixture into bowls and drop a few fish in each.
Put the cups into the fridge to set for four hours.  While those were chilling, I whipped up a tissue paper ocean for our buddy the octopus from yesterday to swim in along with a fish Eva had made a while back at the museum.
Next came some time at the felt board.  We have five felt fish so this poem was perfect:

Five little fish, swimming near the shore,
One got caught and then there were four.
Four little fish, swimming in the sea,
One got caught and then there were three.
Three little fish, swimming in the blue,
One got caught and then there were two.
Two little fish swimming in the sun,
One got caught and then there was one.
One little fish, having lots of fun,
One got caught and then there were none.
To complete the jellyfish, I cut several long strips of red, yellow and orange curling ribbon and tied them together in the middle.  Eva loved how the "tentacles" wiggled.
I taped the ribbon to the inside of the bowl and then hung it up from the ceiling fan.  So pretty!

To cap off the day, we had our ocean snacks for dessert after dinner.  The fish had sunk to the bottom and I thought they got a little too chewy but that didn't stop Eva from devouring them.
As for the potty training, despite going through 6 pairs of undies in the morning and early afternoon, Eva kept her last pair dry the rest of the day.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed that things continue to go as well tomorrow.  

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Hello Mr. Octopus

Today was all about our eight-legged friend.  To make an octopus we started by tracing Eva's fingers.  I started along the side of her hand near her pinky and traced around all four fingers but not the thumb.  Next, she put her other hand down next to what we already traced and I traced around these four fingers.  To finish, I connected the two hands with a curve.
We then flipped the paper over and Eva used markers to decorate.  She decided to make spots today.  (I flipped the paper over because I didn't want the extra tracing marks on the front of the octopus.)
When she was done adding the spots, I cut out the octopus and put little dots of glue along each tentacle so Eva could add the suction cups (aka Cheerios).
Now we have a fun little octopus friend!  I think I need to make an ocean for him to swim in.

Gone Fishin'

We've kicked off the week by making our own fishing game.  To begin, I drew some fish on a piece of white paper and Eva painted them with watercolors.
While they dried, Eva then used finger paint to create the sea for the fish to swim in.
She used her fingers to draw squiggly waves and then we sprinkled some white glitter on for some added sparkle.  It ended up taking all night for the sea to dry but we were able to get in some early morning fishing today.
The fishing pole was made by wrapping twine around a large tongue depressor and hot gluing a magnet to the end of the twine.  I also added numbers to the fish to help reinforce numeral recognition.  Go fish!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Under the Sea

This week we will be exploring the wonders of the oceans and the fascinating creatures that live there.  It will be a wet and wild week.

Small Motor Activities:
Water Sensory Tub- we'll have lots of fun when we fill the tub with water and practice scooping, pouring and squeezing

Large Motor Activities:
Scarf Dancing- we will be using scarves to mimic the ocean waves

Paper Plate Aquarium- a plain white paper plate will be transformed into a peek at an underwater world

Jelly Fish Windsock- this time a paper plate will be used to create a squiggly ocean friend

Handprint Octopus- two hands, traced together will form this creature and just wait to see what we add to his tentacles

Watercolor Fish- what better paint to use on fish!

Jello Sea- this snack will combine blue jello and gummy fish to make an edible ocean

Other Activities:
Fishing Game- we'll use those fish we painted to create a fishing game

Sink or Float- the sensory tub will become a science lab as we experiment to figure out which objects sink and which float


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Fort ReUse

Daddy got in on the Earth Week festivities and helped repurpose some boxes into a fort.  It's amazing how much joy two boxes and some duct tape can bring.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Reduce, Recycle, Reuse

We have made a few crafts over the last few days reusing objects that might otherwise have been thrown away.  The first is the super easy newspaper hat.  Just a few folds to a sheet of newspaper and:
We also made some litter bugs out of an egg carton and scraps from previous crafts.  I cut the egg carton into quarters and then punched holes in both sides of each cup.  Eva threaded pipe cleaners through the holes to serve as legs and antennae for the bugs.  (Great for working on those fine motor skills!)
She decided she wanted an ant and a butterfly.  The ant got three pipe cleaners for legs and another for the antenna and then Eva drew on the face.
For the butterfly I helped thread the pipe cleaners so that they made an X and then we covered them with leftover tissue paper from the earth we made earlier this week.  Eva decorated the wings with markers and added some googly eyes for good measure.
Some other crafts we have done in the past have also reused objects destined for the curb, including our oatmeal canister flower,
the sheep with packing peanut fur,
and the T-rex made from an old cereal box and magazine scraps.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Earth Day Cards

Tomorrow is Earth Day and it is also our garbage/recycling day so today we made a card to give to the man who collects our recycling.  We made coffee filter earths using the same technique as we did for our flowers last month.  To start, I taped the filters to the floor of Eva's new tent (we were outside and it was a little windy) and Eva colored on them with blue and green markers.
Then we moved them onto the driveway so we could spray them with water.
Make sure to get them really wet so the colors run and then let them dry.  They dried pretty quick in the sun today.
We then glued them onto sheets of paper and Eva added eyes and a smile that I cut out of scrap paper.
I wrote a message on them.  One is for the house and one is for the man who collects our recycling.