Monthly Archives: April 2012

For Your Viewing Pleasure….

I love this video of six year-old Ethan (who happens to be on the autism spectrum) playing “Piano Man”!  I smile like crazy every time I watch him.

“Sing it together!”  :)

What a super talented, super awesome kid!

 

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Rules for Grown Ups (Free Printable)

Here’s a lovely little free printable from Growing Play.  I love it!  Head on over to print out the PDF freebie. 

 

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A Little Playful Inspiration

Have you visited the blog Let the Children Play I find myself frequently pinning Jenny’s lovely posts because they are so wonderful for simple, magical, child-led fun.

Here’s a few examples that have inspired me for our lazy days at home…

“This sunny day we set out a couple of shallow boxes and containers filled with sand, along with a basket of goodies to create little worlds.”

series: how to create an irresistible outdoor playspace for children

“Within the Reggio Emilia schools, great attention is given to the look and feel of the classroom.  Just feast your eyes on some of the wonderful images of Reggio Emilia inspired preschools I have found lately…”

A space of comfort and privacy:
 

A space of beauty and wonder:
 
I subscribe to Let the Children Play by email, and it’s lovely to have these simple and whimsical ideas dropped into my inbox each morning.  I highly recommend going over and taking a peek.  Click on Popular Posts to see some of the viewer favorites, but don’t stop there.  Click on related pages at the end of each blog post and you’re likely to find more than you can possibly keep up with to inspire you.  :)
Happy Thursday!

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A Little Online Art Fun

Have you tried Brushster with your kids yet?  This free painting program from the National Gallery of Art lets kids paint with a variety of “brushes” online, or they can click a button to watch the program create art on its own.

NGA has tons of other cool art programs too.  Check out the list here!

Happy Tuesday!

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10 Ways to Make Today Magical

Look who’s joined our family!  We adopted Layla, a three year-old collie, from a shelter last week.  She’s absolutely wonderful, very well trained, and super loving and loyal.

Things are busy and mostly wonderful here.  Fiona will turn 6 months old in a little over a week, and in a month Jack will turn 9, Alex will turn 5 and Victoria will turn 14 (Anna is the only child not celebrating in the next month!). 

I’m working on getting back to more regular blogging and catching up in every other thing I’m perpetually behind in.  We’ll see how it goes!

Here’s a few ways to make a little magic this week.

1.  Go rock hunting together.  Pick any spot with lots of stones and look for ones that are particularly beautiful, sparkly or cute.  Compare rocks when you’re done and pick a few to bring home.

2.  Make a garden sculpture.  Scavenge at the garage or basement for assorted odd parts that nobody wants.  Add some wire, electrical tape or anything else you fancy to hold your parts together and have the kids create something wild and wonderful.

3.  Gather up old, stale spices and let the kids take them outside to “cook” with.  Save empty containers to fill with sand, dirt or crushed leaves.  Give them a couple of bowls to mix their creations in and spoons to stir.

4.  Go puddle stomping.

5.  Go for a bird walk to see how many different birds you can find and ID.  Bring a bird guide if you like or start a journal to document how many kinds you’ve spotted.

6.  Fill some squirt guns or spray bottles with water and have the kids spray designs on the side of the house or the driveway.  Invite them to draw pictures with the water and see if they can write their names.

7.  Lie on your backs in the grass and cloud watch.

8.  Hold a carnival in the back yard.  Rig up some easy contests (knock over pop bottles with bean bags, toss the ball into the bucket and so on) and get extra toys or stuffed animals that can be passed on.  Invite friends and ask them to contribute their own games and prizes.

9.  Make up your own super heroes and super villains and act out a scene together.  Our girls were Butterfly Girl and Fashion Queen once when they were little and they attacked the Evil Messy Haired Daddy.  (Snort)  The campier the better!

10. Visit an ethnic grocery store together and find some new goodies to sample and collect.

And with that, I’m off to tackle the next 20 things on my to-do list and sneak a bit of chocolate.  Have a magical week!

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