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Archive for March, 2012

We made some Easter bunny bread this afternoon!

I know they’re a little creepy looking with their huge eyes.  And some eyes wandered, and one fell off.  Maybe next time I’ll cut the raisins smaller and it would look better.  But the kids loved them!

I just made blobs about the size of the body, head, arms, legs and ears and pushed them together.  Then they stuck together as they baked.  I made the dough in the bread maker on the dough setting.  Here’s the recipe I used:

1 1/4 cup water

1Tbsp skimmed milk powder

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp sugar

1 tsp salt

4 cups flour (I used 3 cups white and  1 cup wholemeal)

1 1/2 tsp fast action yeast

 

I chucked it all in the bread machine, the made the shapes, plus some hedgehog rolls, and let rise for about 45 min, then baked 15 minutes at 200C/400F/Gas 6

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I loooove this one we just got!  It’s bigger than I thought it would be and makes so many rainbows!

I got it on Ebay for about £4.39 and free shipping.  The size is 40mm.  I want to get more and live in a rainbow house!

Here it is with our old one.  It makes way more rainbows than the other one, but it’s nice having both.

I should have taken a photo of all the rainbows on the floor but there were also lots of toys on the floor as well….so I didn’t!

And of course they’re great for talking about light refraction.  Here are some links to websites for more fun with light:

Explanations about light

Science experiments about light

Experiment we need to try

 

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This is a fun way to practice and review letter sounds.

I got this idea from a book we have called ‘Entertaining and Educating Young Children’ by Usborne.  Get an empty cereal box and cut a long hole in the front.  I used a pocket knife, and it came out crooked, but it didn’t matter.

The book says to use letters written on paper but I used our foam bath letters to save time, since they’re already there.  You put the pile of letters, (or only about 5 of them so it’s easier for the child to find them) in front the child.  The letters we used are from Mothercare, and are the lower case ones.

You simply say something like, ‘Find the ‘mmmm’ to send to the monkey!’  And the child finds it and posts it in the ‘post box.’  I also threw in the name of the letter for added review, ‘See if you can find the ‘g’ gggggg, to send to the gorilla!’  She loved this, and kept wanting to do more when we finished all the letters, so then we did the numbers.  ‘Send the 4 to the cat!’

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Portable Sandboxes

Today we got out the sandboxes I put together last summer.  We have a balcony but not our own backyard, so I got some clear plastic storage tubs with lids, filled them with sand, and put their sand toys in them.

They can play in them on the balcony, or I can put them out on the grass in the communal grassy area.  They don’t take up much space, and can be covered easily.  They cost under £5 each at Dunelm Mill, but you can get these kind of things anywhere.  They’re pretty low on sand because they’re from last year!  I think they’re much easier to deal with and store than those sand tables you can buy.

 

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This is very random.  I like stinky cheese.  I’ve  been trying new ones lately and here they are!

The one on the left is dolcelatte.  It’s soft and creamy.  Yummy. Here it is close up.

The next one was a little too stinky for me.  It’s called Irish Ardrahan.  It’s soft, and the outer skin is really salty.  Here it is up close:

And finally, Jervaulx Blue.  I really liked this one.  It’s kind of hard.  Not too stinky, just stinky enough!

Anyone else a fan of stinky cheese?  What’s your favorite?  I’m looking for more to try!

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No, I couldn’t think of a more interesting sounding title!  Fried brain.  I adapted this from an idea I found in a book we have for activities for kids.

A couple of the lines are patterns that repeat, and others are just all different symbols to practice.  Plus she was having trouble doing the number 8 earlier, so I put that in as well.  A couple of them are cursive letters and shapes, just to see how she would do with it and give her a secret introducti0n to it!

And practice drawing stars!

She thought it was all very fun, and we stopped before she got bored, as Glenn Doman says to do!

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I made these for A when she was 2, and now have started getting them out for E.

It’s the Kumon book My First Book of Tracing, but it’s not about tracing, the name is just weird.  It’s more like mazes.

It starts off easy and gets more difficult as you go through the book.  What I did is cut out about 8 of the pages with a Stanley/Exacto knife that were roughly the same level of difficulty.  Then I put them in plastic sleeves and taped the top (or else marker gets on the pages and they also can fall out).  Then I laced them together with string through the holes.

I also made some of my own pages, like the zigzags above, to extend certain skill pages that A needed more practice on than just one page.

I gave her a washable marker to use on the plastic pages, and it’s reusable and lasts forever, instead of using up the pages of the Kumon book, or very tediously erasing them (which I started out doing, and my arm got so tired and it took forever and was annoying!)

Wipe clean with a slightly damp cloth.  Have a dry one handy as well, to dry it after wiping.

These books are awesome for learning pen control.  They start kids out learning movements and shapes that are used in writing letters.  They’re so bright and colorful and the activities and mazes are fun for little kids.  I made a bunch of these mini workbooks, with each one getting a little more difficult.  So once a book became too easy, we jsut stopped using it and started using the next one.

Making the reusable ones takes a bit of time, but is so worth it, mainly because you can reuse them, don’t have to erase, and you have smaller books of one level of difficulty rather than you kid whizzing through the pages and just scribbling because it’s getting too hard!

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