Fun Fridays – Box Day

Children will have a blast on box day. About one – two weeks prior, start collecting all sizes of boxes.It would be great to get some large appliance boxes but that’s not needed for them to have fun.

Set up an area of the house or outside if you have a nice day. Some supplies that will be useful are: masking/duct tape, paint, scissors (with adult supervision), and string, yarn, or ribbon. These supplies are not necessary but can add to their fun.

If you are going to let them paint the boxes, set up an area for that. Put down newspaper, plastic tablecloths, or an old shower curtain to protect the area and to provide easier clean up. Also, have some old towels and wet ones for clean up.

When we had box day at a preschool I was working at, some of the children made a train with the boxes, some painted them, and some taped several boxes together. Let them use their imagination. Take pictures and print them out and have the children tell/write a story about what they made.

Fun Fridays

Fun Friday is something that I started doing about five years ago in a preschool that I worked at. There were several other classrooms that participated with us.
We would choose a theme or topic and we would plan some special things to do with the children that related to that topic. It could be something that you did for part of the day or the whole day.
This idea can be used at home also. You want your children to do fun things but you don’t want to spend a lot of money each time. This gives you and the children something to look forward to.
Perhaps you want to do this once or twice a month, or do it on a different day. That’s fine. The idea is to have some preplanned things for your child/children to do.
Maybe you want to do this with another family. You can take turns going to each other’s house to do the actvities. Have the children involved with the planning. The ideas are endless for creating a Fun Friday.
In future posts I will share some of the things that I have done for Fun Fridays.
What would you do for a Fun Friday?

Butcher Paper – What Can You Do With It?

When I use to own a preschool, I purchased butcher paper from Sam’s Club. There are many uses for it at a preschool or at your home. The cost was around $28.00 and is 900 feet long. This can last a long time.

Things you can do with butcher paper:

Body Tracing – Your child lies on a large piece of the paper and you outline their body. They can then decorate themselves with crayons, markers, paint, material, and yarn.
Spray Bottle Painting – Attach paper to a fence or protected wall and fill some spray bottles with paint. This can get messy so protect the area around it. You can use clothespins to hang paper on a chain link fence.
Painting with brushes – Have your child use a variety of brushes to paint.
Telescopes – Cut a piece of the paper, roll it, and tape it.
Paper Swords – Make it the same way you made the telescopes.
Wrapping Paper – Have your child make wrapping paper using rubber stamps, paint, markers, or crayons.
Tablecloths – Have the children decorate the paper with a variety of mediums. When I had my preschool, I use to have the children decorate the paper to use as tablecloths for different parties we had.

When I went on a missions trip to Mexico a few years ago, we took a roll of butcher paper with us. The children enjoyed drawing on it and making large pictures.

What do you use butcher paper for?

Loose Parts

The theory of loose parts was developed in 1972 by architect Simon Nicholson. The idea is that loose parts are materials that children can move, design and redesign, and tinker with as part of their play. Loose parts can be bought materials, objects found in nature, or things from your recycling bin.
One day when my grandchildren were coming over, I gathered some loose parts for them to play with.

Loose Parts

Loose Parts

I told my grandchildren that they can play with the loose parts however they wanted to.
K and C creating with loose parts.

K and C creating with loose parts.

The boys were playing with the loose parts for at least fortyfive minutes.

What kind of loose parts do you like to use?

More Thrift Store Finds

Going through a thrift store one day, I came across three clear plastic containers with lids that had indentations on them. When I saw them, I thought marbles or pom poms could fit in each one. This would make a great 1 – 1 correspondence learning activity. They were only fifty cents each so I bought them.

Thrift store finds!!

Thrift store finds!!

I had some marbles at home and also small pom poms. I tried them out and they fit great. I gathered enough to fit into each container. I also put some felt in the bottom of the container for the marbles so it wouldn’t be so noisy when they were put back. I also provided tongs and children’s chopsticks to use.
Pom poms and marbles

Pom poms and marbles

When I do this activity with preschool children or my grandchildren, I usally put a small tray underneath the containers to catch any marbles or pom poms that might roll away. Depending on the age of the child, they can use their hands to put them on the lid, tongs, or children’s chopsticks. Also, before the child leaves the area, we make sure we have all the marbles and all the pom poms.
This activity is not for children under 3 without direct supervision.