Sunday, January 30, 2011

musical plates - letter sounds

I got this idea from my friend Jedda over at This Little Project. As soon as I saw it I knew I needed to try it!

We've been working on the alphabet in our house lately. We've mastered the letters and recognizing and identifying them and now we're finishing up getting all of their sounds down. So this is what we did:

1. We (I) wrote the capital and lowercase letter on a plate.

2. We reviewed the letters and put about 7 down at a time.

3. I played some music while the kiddos walked/hopped/crawled around the plates.

4. When I turned the music off I would call out a sound (Jedda suggested many other ways you can play this for different ages - call the letter, a word that starts with that letter, etc.)

5. The girls would listen to the sound I was making and then find the corresponding letter/plate and either stand on it or place their hand on it.

6. We would continue playing until I felt they had really mastered those sounds then we'd pick them up and place new letters down.

Although my 1 year old had no clue what she was doing she did start to pick up on what certain letter were and she had a blast just tromping around to the music. My 3 year old however did extremely well and this game has definitely helped her solidify some sound recognition skills. Even better - they both had so much fun they wanted to keep playing it all afternoon!

I can see this easily being adapted to different ages/skills levels/academic areas. You could write numbers on them and then say multiplication problems, you can write capitals on them and then call out states - so many endless possibilities!

Have fun!


Friday, January 28, 2011

Flower Topiary

I've had this cute little flower topiary from back in my college days. I have no clue when or where I got it let alone how much it cost. Since we bought our house I just haven't found a spot for it to go and so it has remained in my garage sale/Salvation Army box in the basement.

The other day I got it out to see if it would fit in a new place I'm redoing (more on that in a later post) and decided it just needed a little revamping and it would be a perfect Valentine's decoration.

So I painted the base with some craft paint, shoved some little red berries in there (I really should hot glue them or something!), and finished it off with a little red ribbon. All it took were a few supplies lying around the house and now I love it sitting out as a new holiday decoration. I'm so glad I didn't decide to trash it after all.

Don't have one of these just lying around??? All you'd need to make the same thing from scratch would be:

- a small pot with styrofoam and moss
- a stick
- a round styrofoam sphere
- small flowers and pins


1. Paint the pot.
2. Cut the foam to fit the pot.
3. Hot glue some moss on top.
4. Stick the stick into the pot and stick the foam ball on top.
5. Push pin flowers into the sphere until the entire thing is covered.
6. Add any embellishments you want!

Have fun!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Valentine Conversation Blocks

When Kierste over at Brown Paper Packages made these cute little blocks for Valentine's Day I was instantly in love - what made me want to make them even more is that I already had everything on hand! Making a craft and having a cute decoration for free is very appealing :)

Items Needed:
- 3.5 inch blocks cut from a wood post
- scrapbook paper
- craft paint
- Modge Podge


1. Paint the wood with your craft paint - any color you want!

2. Print off whatever words you want showing on your blocks. I don't have vinyl so I opened up a word document and made a text box the same size as my blocks. Then I printed the words in the smiley monster font and made them as large as my text box would hold. Then I printed it off on my scrapbook paper.

3. Cut the scrapbook paper to fit the blocks.

4. Distress it and then Mod Podge it on. Once dry, place another coat of Modge Podge on top.

These are super cute and would be perfect for so many holidays!
Have Fun!