Thursday, April 17, 2014

Easter Bunny Sack Puppets

The older ones were able to use google eyes and a pom pom for the nose. If we had more time, they would have traced and cut out their own pieces, but since we did that yesterday, and I didn't have templates ready, I just cut everything so they could assemble. 

The little ones used circles for the nose and eyes and added a white dot to each eye that I punched with the hole punch.

If you want to create a bunch of pieces for a group, you can get 8 ears out of one sheet of construction paper if folded in half short side to short side, then folded in twice.

Since I was wishing I had templates pre-made, I went ahead and made one. Then I thought about large groups and elementary kiddos who could make these in class if it was a coloring/cut/paste sheet, so here it is...

This one also wouldn't have any choking hazards for the under-3 crowd and wouldn't have items falling off, as much, in backpacks.

My inspiration for these came from a craft share site where Karolina Slater owner of DayKare posted these cute bunny puppets. I gave my children the option of putting the cotton balls on as paws and adding one to the back for a tail, but they chose not to.  

Along with, these cute bunny bags from Good Housekeeping.
For more great ideas, check out my 
Tags: Easter, chick, chicken, bunny, rabbit, craft, cut, paste, color, coloring, puppet, glue, preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, elementary, spring, farm, nature, kid, kid's, paper, bag, paper bag, paper sack, sack

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Duck / Bunny Easter Preschool Puppet Craft

We also made these darling ducky/bunnies.

I looked at several printables for these, and this one, FREE from Kay Sommer on TPT, I felt was not only the best of the lot, but that I couldn't create one any better. 

I did, however, resize them to fit on a single sheet of paper. You could simply change your printer settings to print 2 pages on 1 sheet landscape.

The poems read: "My little duck is really funny, turn him over and he is a bunny."
                          "My little bunny brings me luck, I turn him over and he is a duck."

The older children could read these through fine. A lot of their sight words are included, which I loved.

These were surprisingly successful. 

The older children did a remarkable job of coloring in the lines and cutting out their own. They were also able to add a yellow feather for the duck's wing and a cotton ball for the bunny's tail. the little ones didn't get those choking hazards.

We did several rounds of "5 Little Ducks" as a puppet show. It works out great since we have 6 students here. Five ducks and one momma. Everyone had to have a turn playing momma.

They randomly played with them throughout the day, and I hear at home as well.
Tags: Easter, chick, chicken, bunny, rabbit, craft, cut, paste, color, coloring, puppet, glue, preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, elementary, spring, farm, nature, kid, kid's, 

Chicks Hand Print Preschool Easter Craft

This ended up being a DARLING craft project, and I loved that it had so many different elements.

It was also easy to differentiate for the older and littler ones. For instance, the 4s had the option of tracing and cutting out their own circles. They also were allowed to use google eyes, and the littles used fingertip prints.

We started out with 1 sheet of white construction paper and 1/2 sheet of yellow.

I found two lids that would fit appropriately on the paper. These were 5 inches and 3 inches.

After gluing down the yellow circles with glue sticks, we did yellow handprints for the wings and orange handprints for the feet.

The older children cut yellow and orange yarn snips about 1 inch long and glued them on with white glue. The little ones helped me cut them with teacher-assist scissors. I helped them place the glue and they laid the yarn pieces down themselves.

While these are cute like this, I felt it needed some more.

So we used some of our crimped paper Easter grass to add to the bottom. They patted it onto a bed of white glue. After it dried, I trimmed the pieces even with the paper.

To make the black eye finger prints on the little one's chick look less soulless, I added in a small circle to each eye with a silver sharpie, since I couldn't find my white-out. 

I found this idea on Pinterest from Other great ideas are available on my Pinterest Easter Theme board.
Tags: Easter, chick, chicken, bunny, rabbit, craft, cut, paste, color, coloring, puppet, glue, preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, elementary, spring, farm, nature, kid, kid's, 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Spring / Easter Sensory Bin

Last year's Spring Sensory Bin dealt with our gardening theme. This year's went the Easter Theme route.

This bin has the following elements:
  • Colored rice filler 
  • Crimped paper filler
  • Spring colored ribbons
  • Spring colored pipe cleaners
  • Plastic Easter eggs
  • Plastic egg coloring cups for color sorting and filling activities  [Dollar store]
  • Small/medium/large white pom poms for size sorting
  • Colored small eggs  [Dollar store]
  • Colored small bunnies [Dollar store]
  • Various tools, containers and utensils
This bin is more about color matching for the littler ones and sensory exploration. The older children are encouraged to color sort and count. We did some addition activities with the colored eggs.
Tags: spring, Easter, sensory, bin, bunny, egg, eggs, pastel, game, games, math, addition, color, sorting, preschool, child care, daycare, pre-k, toddler, theme, unit, fine motor, rice, filler, pouring

Friday, March 21, 2014

Healthy Banana Cookies

I have been seeing these banana cookies on Facebook a LOT. Different versions. But I liked the one I started with the best and decided it's capabilities were truly endless. They take me 5 minutes to whip together and about 10 minutes to bake.

No flour, no sugar, no oil, nothing unhealthy unless you choose to add it.

The recipe I developed into and use:

3 mashed bananas
2 cups oats
1/3 cup fruit puree [applesauce, mango, pineapple, pear, blueberry, etc.]
1/4 cup liquid [coconut milk, almond milk, soy milk, fruit juice, etc.]
1 cup fruit [small or diced, dried, or fresh firm fruits, such as dried blueberries/cranberries/apricot/etc., coconut flakes, diced apple or pear]
1/2 C finely chopped nuts or seeds [optional, such as walnuts, pecans, almonds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc.]
1 teaspoon extract [vanilla, almond, mint, etc.]

Preheated oven, 350 degrees, 10-15 minutes, spray the cookie sheets.

Ready to go into the puree, coconut milk, coconut flakes, mixed nuts, vanilla
I think the liquid really adds a moistness that I prefer. The outside is firm and the center moist and chewy. There is nothing bad in these! 

I'm making 1-2 batches a week and the children have free access to them. 

  • I have a convection oven. I only need 10-12 minutes to cook these, I would imagine a regular oven would need 15.
  • These have no oil, so you really need to spray the cookie sheet.
  • They come out like they go in. They do not spread. If I use a small cookie scoop I leave them be, but if I use the ice cream scoop, then I flatten down the tops.
  • They make 2 dozen small scoop cookies or 1 dozen large scoop cookies.
  • I make my own fruit purees in my Magic Bullet. I can whirl up super soft mangos, fresh berries, roasted sweet potatoes, etc. for use in these.
  • I have also added a tablespoon of coconut oil and a tablespoon of flax seed to up the nutritional component on occasion.
  • I use my Pampered Chef food chopper to chop the nuts.
  • To keep the cookies moist, I place them in a Ziploc once cool.

Blueberry puree, coconut, mixed nuts
The recipe I started with from FB:

3 mashed bananas
2 cups oats
1/3 C applesauce
1/4 C milk
1 C raisins

Simplest one I've found:

3 mashed bananas
2 cups oats
1 cup raisins
Tags: banana, cookie, healthy, cookies, quick, easy, nutritional, fruit, gluten free, sugar free, child care, daycare, snack, child, toddler, preschool, preschooler

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Math with Mardi Gras Coins

What can we do with some colored Mardi Gras coins from the Dollar Store?


This is not a big year for us regarding Mardi Gras, but I came across some coins and mask at Dollar Tree and grabbed them up, more for the year that we do Mardi Gras as a theme.  But once we got them out, the children got very engaged, and we took off as we usually do...

COLOR SORT - First we sorted them by color, each of the preschoolers self-selected choosing their favorite one.

MULTIPLICATION/DIVISION - Then, we did some multiplication by grouping in different units of different colors, splitting them out and putting them back together. Worked on skip counting by 2s and 3s.

ADDITION/SUBTRACTION - I had each child count out just five chips from their stack to use, and each one was asked to put in ALL/NONE/SOME of their chips, and each time, they had to put in a new/different amount. We then added up the group, and then subtracted out one color at a time each round.

ROTE COUNTING/ COUNTING A DIE - We got out the die and each rolled and took that number of coins. Once all the coins were distributed, they had to count how many each one had. We compared amounts. No winner/loser aspect incorporated at all.

PATTERNING - We started out with an ABC pattern and moved on to more intricate patterns, such as this AABCC. 

GRAPHING - We took all the coins and mixed up the pile like maniacs, then they worked as a group to lay out the coins according to color and crown or $ side. After counting each column, we analyzed the graph as to most/least and how those two corresponded, and the purples being the same/even. 

Those plastic coins actually have a lot of value in them.
Tags: math, preschool, kindergarten, graphing, counting, numbers, games, Mardi Gras, coins, dice, multiply, divide, addition, subtraction, pre-k, early, learning, manipulatives

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Valentine's Sight Word FREEBIE

I searched high and low for a FREE sight word Valentine's mini-book. The one I have in my Valentine's Thematic Unit covers colors and numbers, but not many sight words, which these children are needing.

Besides, they already have that one in their book boxes.

So we worked together to create this one. They already knew these words, but it is a good refresher and it is always nice for them to have books they can read on their own to practice fluency.

This 12 page mini book has 20 pre-primer sight words, 15 primer sight words, and has non-sight words in all caps to indicate a picture prompt. 
FREE - Valentine's Dolch Sight Word mini-book

I also have my FREE add and subtract mats available.

FREEBIE Valentine Add & Subtract Mats

Tags: Valentine's, Day, free, freebie, sight, word, Dolch, primer, pre-primer, mini, book, mini-book, preschool, kindergarten, 1st grade, sightword, coloring, craft, activity, theme, unit,