Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Christmas ornaments decorated with kitchen cupboard ingredients

With just few days until Christmas there is not much time for time consuming activities.
I am busy in the kitchen and Mr Frog is bored. To keep him occupied and give myself some time to do all the Christmas preparation I set up a tray with some last minutes Christmas ornaments to decorate. 

These last minute Christmas ornaments are extremely easy to make. And you can use any dry ingredients from your kitchen cupboard!  

This is what we used:

Set up a tray with:
- some cupcake cases filled with dry ingredients (it can be grains, died beans or  cake decorating sprinkles)
- PVA glue with brush
- cardboard shapes

Then just let children decorate the shapes (use lots of glue!) and explore interesting textures of different ingredients at the same time.
How easy is that? :) 

When the ornaments are dry use diluted PVA glue and cover them generously to make sure all the grains stick properly, attach a ribbon and that's it :)  

You may also like:
Christmas Threading

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Experimenting with Light {Light & Reflection}

If you have a little scientist at home and you child likes experimenting and discovering this activity is perfect for you. It is simple, easy to make and great for long autumn evenings. 

Mr Frog has been into science and all kinds of experiments for quite a while now. Most of the time I find him in the bathroom mixing different ingredients to check "what happen if....".
This month's Light and Reflection series perfectly fit into his current interests - Science

We did some great science experiments before here and here
This time I set up a mess free light experiment for Mr.Frog to check that the light ray travels only in the straight lines and to explore how the mirrors reflect the light rays. 

First gather some stuff: 

- cut a thin slot in the black card
- use the white tack to secure card and mirrors during experiment on the flat surface
- I used acrylic mirrors from Imagido (they work great for us for all kind of experiments and can be safely used by child without supervision)

Then we simply secured card on the table in standing position and used a small table lamp to shine through the slot (make sure the lights are switch off ;). Mr Frog used the mirrors to bounce back the light ray.
It was great fun for him to place mirror in different angles to bounce the ray back, use few mirrors to bounce the ray few times and move the torch side to side to check how the angle is changing.

Check other Science ideas from lovely bloggers:
Oil and Water on the Light Table from Still Playing School
Animal Science on the Light Table with X-rays from Where Imagination Grows

Come back in December to check some more ideas:

Join me on Pinterest for some more Science activities ideas:

Follow Frog in a Pocket's board Science and STEM Activities on Pinterest.

Monday, 7 September 2015

Autumn Lanterns {Light & Reflections Series}

Oh, we love autumn! All these colorful leaves, treasure hunts, even autumn rain. And autumn crafts of course! :)

This month's Light & Reflections Series theme is Fall. We've made simple autumn lanterns using the first autumn leaves we collected. 

We used laminator but if you don't have one you can use thick tracing paper or reuse old transparent file folders to stick the leaves on.

You need:
- leaves (dry and press them between the books for a day)
- tissue paper leaves shapes
- laminating pouches (squares or A4 size) or tracing paper if you use it instead
- laminator

Mr Frog cut out some tissue paper shapes inside and arranged them with leaves in the laminating pouches and we laminated them. 

Then simple connect the squares together using a sellotape to make a box-like shape or a cylinder for A4 size. Put some led lights inside. Simple as 1-2-3 :)  
It gives really nice light and the dried leaves looks beautiful. Perfect to lighten up long autumn evenings :)

Don't forget to check more fall ideas:
Counting and Adding Acorns on the Light Table - Where Imagination Grows 
Fall Tic Tac Toe on the Light Table - And Next Comes L 

Monday, 3 August 2015

"There were 10 in the bed" - silhouettes nursery rhymes.

Does your child like nursery rhymes and you think how to make it more fun and interesting? This month's theme for Light and Reflections series is just for you then - Nursery Rhymes! :)
Do you remember our silhouettes storytelling? I used black card to make simple silhouettes for "10 in the bed" song. Mr Frog loved counting songs when was in preschool. Now he is bit too old for such simple counting but he found this activity quite funny :) 

All you need to make this simple prop is:
black card 
some sello tape
a bit of imagination :)  

I cut out some stripes with 10 little people at the top and stuck some numbers at the bottom using a sello tape. I didn't use any template but you can sketch some shapes using a white crayon. Then I used half of A4 card and made two rows of 10 little slots and thread stripes through them.
Last thing - stick it on the window and sing a song. Child can pull the stripes down when singing making little people "felling out"  the bed.

This easy activity can be used to support some Maths skills as number recognition or counting when singing nursery counting songs.

You can easily make similar silhouettes for another counting songs and use them on the window, light table or as a shadow puppets on the wall. 

Don't forget to check this month's great ideas:

Monday, 8 June 2015

Busy City on the Light Table

Longer days and short evenings mean a lot of time outside for us, and a lot of time in the cupboard for our light table ;) But this month's transportation theme for  Light&Reflection Series gave us a chance to use it again!

I set up a busy city on the light table - great for small world play, practicing some map skills and following directions.

I used masking tape to make the roads and pedestrians crossings of our city map and added some buildings made of laminated tissue paper. We had the shops, doctor's surgery, police station and jail, king's castle, park and our house. I added some cars and Lego figurines. All that created great light table small world play

Mr Frog enjoyed building the stories around the cars - an accident on busy roundabout where police and ambulance were engaged or trip to the doctors through the roads packed with traffic. 

The aim of this small world scene was not only play but also practicing basic map skills and following directions.
Mr Frog was:
- driving from one destination to another following some traffic signs on the road (no entry, ahead only and no turn), he had to plan his route and explain how to get there (turn left, right, go ahead)
- following directions as I told him where to go (ex: turn left then go straight and turn right on the roundabout) 
- recognizing the cardinal directions(locate some points on our busy city map - the jail is on the south, King's Castle the northwest).

Don't forget to check the other posts from this month's Light&Reflection:
Window Race Track from Happily Ever Mom

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Famous painters inspired magazine scraps portrairts

Do you have a stash of old magazines and don't know what to do with them? I have to confess I have a lot of old magazines (I have no idea why?) and before getting rid of them I decided to use scraps to create simple magazines collage portraits

First we looked at some portraits by Picasso and Arcimboldo to get some inspiration and realized that portraits don't need to be an exact representation of real world. 

All you need is:
- some old magazines
- pastel crayons/paints/wax crayons (use your favorites)
- paper and glue

Mr Frog found some pieces (eyes, noses, mouths and food) in magazines and cut them out. Then he created own portraits (loosely inspired by the big painters portraits he saw) by sticking and drawing with pastels He enjoyed the activity so much and created so many quite spooky portraits ;)


This simple activity is great to practice fine motor skills (cutting and sticking) and arouse kids interest in famous painters work. Next day Mr Frog asked me to show him some more famous painters - it looks like more magazines' photos are going to be turn into portraits soon ;) 

Favorite Art ideas from around the web on our Pinterest board:

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Painting with light {Light & Reflections Series}

This month Light & Reflections theme is art. We did some art on the light table  like painting and printing and oil and watercolor art but this time I've decided to do something new and different to Mr Frog. It's kind of photo art - painting with light. 

Painting with acrylics, oils, pastels. We've done that already! Painting with light - is it possible? This art experiment was lots of fun for both of us :) Every time effect is a bit of surprise - you plan the final result but sometimes you get something different. It does need some practice. And spontaneous, creative gross motor movements ;)

I used camera on the tripod in the dark room and explained Mr Frog (more or less) how the camera works. I set the camera's settings - ISO 100, AV 2.8, T10" or more. 

Then I asked him to paint in the air using his little torch light while I released the shutter.  


I do hope this first photo-art experiments will arouse his interest in photography as an art medium one day.....well, right now he's the most interested in camera technical stuff and settings ;)