Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Beach Small World Play

This past week we enjoyed exploring beach & ocean activities as part of our Simple Summer Theme series.

One thing I've recently been wanting to do more of with the kiddos is small world play. 

Using the sandbox was a natural idea for beach play, although we also could have set up a small sensory tub for this type of play. 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Bug Week (Simple Summer Theme #1)

As I mentioned earlier this week, Big Brother thinks it would be fun if each week of our summer vacation had a "theme." Most of our summer will be spent at home, and I love that he's thinking ahead like this. With extra kiddos here off and on during the summer, it would make our times with them more fun too.

But, I really want our summer to still feel relaxed and flexible, and well, like summer vacation versus summer camp. So, with that in mind I'm trying to honor his theme idea but in a low key way. We'll try, on the days we can, to do at least one simple project, snack, or activity that matches our current theme. Here on the blog I'm calling this "Simple Summer Themes." After the week I'll share a brief round up of different ways we celebrated our theme.

Our First Week: Bug Week

Our first week was "Bug Week," and as it was also our first week of vacation, we definitely tried to keep it simple. But even keeping it simple was still a lot of fun!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Clothespin Dragonflies

Big Brother has asked me to organize "theme weeks" this summer, which makes me laugh as I'm starting to think he might be a future teacher in the making. Or, at least a camp counselor. I'm trying to approach our weeks with enough projects and activities to make it seem like a theme to him, but also enough freedom to make it still seem like summer for me.

Our first theme was "Bugs." We did several simple bug explorations and activities, but one of my favorites were these adorable clothespin dragonflies.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Pirate Pinwheels

I had to laugh the other day when I asked Big Brother what he wanted to bring to his preschool end of year potluck, and he wanted to bring a whole bunch of "Pirate Pinwheel" sandwiches.

I laughed, because there are some parts of parenthood that you think out and plan for, but there is a whole lot of parenthood that you do on the fly. And because often, planning or no planning, it can all depend on how you spin it.

Pirate pinwheels is one of those moments for us.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

A Color of His Own: Chameleon Watercolor Project

We love connecting projects to books, and we're always inspired by the amazing group of bloggers who participate in the Virtual Book Club for Kids (you can also check the club out on Facebook) as the group comes up with some great extension activities each month. This month's author was Leo Lionni. We chose to read and do a project using a book we've really been enjoying lately, A Color of His Own

This is the sweet tale of a little chameleon who is looking for one color to stay all the time, but keeps running into that challenge that chameleons change color. In the end, he winds up finding a friend to always be with so they can at least always be the same color together. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Dandelion Sun Catcher

A few weeks ago we shared our Dandelion Soup play invitation, which was a great way to use some of the dandelions in our yard. Of course, after the dandelions turned to seed, we couldn't use them in quite the same way. Instead, we created a couple of these Dandelion Sun Catchers.

Several times now we've made paper plate sun catchers from nature as inspired by these nature collage paper plate sun catchers from Hands On: As We Grow. 

Monday, June 8, 2015

Watercolor in the Rain

Even though we like to mostly think about the better weather ahead of us, we've still had several rainy days these past few weeks. Now that the summer weather is here at least those rainy days can be warm.

After several rainy days last week, the boys were feeling a little cooped up and in need of something different. This lead us to watercoloring in the rain!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Monthly Goals: June 2015

It's hard to believe we've been setting monthly goals for half of a year now. Each month I feel like things are getting a little more organized, a little more focused, and even a little more thoughtful!

But this month I've decided to switch up the goals a little and think a little differently than before. Our June goals are all about getting ready for summer so we can make the best of it when it gets here.

June Goals: Make a Summer Bucket List

It's been hard not to feel like summer is already here these past few weeks. The warmer temps, all of our outside time, and the fact we've been purposefully taking it a little slower this past month means that we've already been dipping our toes into summer fun.