Virtual Book Club: Bug Week

Trevor loves books. So when I heard about this virtual book club, I knew we had to take part. The first week was Bug Week. So for every day this week I read Trevor a different bug book and then created him an activity to go along with it.

Monday: Bugs, Bugs, Bugs! By Bob Barner

I made a green squishy bag (take a gallon sized Ziploc, fill it with cheap hair gel and food coloring, tape it shut, then put inside another Ziploc) for him to use on our light table. We pretended it was grass and added his awesome Melissa and Doug bug set. He had a blast feeding the bugs, putting them to sleep, and also just playing with the squishy bags.

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Tuesday: The Very Busy Spider by Eric Carle

I taped up a piece of contact paper on our sliding door (sticky side out), drew a spider web ย behind it with a window crayon, then taped a toy spider in the web. I had tissue paper “bugs” for him to trap in the sticky web. He wanted to act out the whole story so I had to scramble to find farm animals for him to talk to the spider as well. I think sticking himself in the web was his favorite part though ๐Ÿ™‚

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Wednesday: The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

I created a caterpillar for him to feed out of a cardboard tube, construction paper, googly eyes, and a pipe cleaner. Then we made food for it out of Play-Doh. Trevor enjoyed feeding the caterpillar and it was great fine motor work. Of course we had to act out the whole story here too, so we put the full caterpillar in a cocoon (brown bag) and then made butterflies with paint and construction paper.

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Thursday: Miss Spider’s New Car by David Kirk

I covered our scooter board with paper and set out some markers and bug stickers for him to decorate and make a car for Miss Spider. He wanted to draw Miss Spider so I helped him draw a circle for her body. It was nice to see him using markers because usually he is so resistant to drawing because he knows how difficult it is for him. He also had a great time being pulled around on the scooter board. The scooter board is a great sensory workout (vestibular and proprioceptive).

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Friday: Incredible Inchworm

I made green and brown inchworms out of clothes pins for him to take outside. In the story the inchworms nibble leaves and get lost in the lawn, so that’s what Trevor had them do outside. He did a great job pinching the clothes pins on leaves and sticks, though he needed some help. Working with clothes pins is a good way to work on strengthening the small muscles in the hands.

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Check out the Virtual Book Club for yourself!

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Real Tools = Real Fun!

Trevor is really into tools and “fixing” things right now. He likes to go in his Daddy’s shop and see (and touch) all of his tools. So I’ve been trying to let him explore real tools in a fun and safe way. I made him his own workbench using a scrap piece of wood. I nailed in a few nails for him to hammer and started a few screws for him to try and finish screwing. He loves it! It’s great fine motor work too. I also squirted some shaving cream on his workbench so he could use the putty knife he stole, ahem, borrowed from his Daddy. It was a fun way to add in tactile sensory play as well.

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I’ve also set him up with wrenches, pliers and hammers before at a Play-Doh station. It’s a fun and interesting way to encourage squeezing and hand strengthening. Since Trevor has some weakness in his hands this was a great activity for him. And using Play-Doh is a great pre-writing activity for any kid.

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Aluminum Foil River

We finally made an aluminum foil river today. I’d seen the idea floating around the blogosphere for awhile now, but had yet to attempt it myself. One of Trevor’s PT goals is to walk/run on uneven surfaces, so I thought this would be a great way to encourage that. He had to walk up and down a little grassy hill to play with the river. And of course, the boy loves water, so he had a fabulous time!

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At first I just had out small boats that would fit in the river, but he wanted to bring all of his water toys out. So it was a good lesson in size comparison too. The toys that didn’t float down because they were too big, he ended up pulling them down the river himself. Other than wasting a lot of water, this activity was a great success ๐Ÿ™‚

First and Last

My how you have grown this year, my son. You shot up like a weed! But not only did you grow in height, but in so many other ways as well. I want to celebrate that when you first started this school year you could barely make a mark with a crayon. Now you can scribble! (Or scribble scrabble as you call it). You are playing alongside your friends at school and are showing the world your imagination. You shocked me and your Dad both when you saw a picture of the American flag the other night and busted out reciting the Pledge of Allegiance! You want to be more independent and get so mad if anyone else puts your dirty dishes in the sink, lol. That is your JOB. But what I’m most thankful for this year is that you learned to say “I love you.” It makes me so incredibly happy when you give me a hug “because that will make you feel loved.” I can’t wait to see what the next year brings! I love you too, buddy.

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Bug Sundae

Trevor loves cold things. So this summer we’re going to be doing a lot more cold-themed sensory activities. Today I made him a Bug Sundae to play with. He kept calling it a Bug Saturday, which was pretty darn cute ๐Ÿ™‚ Love the things kids say!

I put Cool Whip, cocoa powder, chocolate syrup, and his plastic bugs into a little plastic bucket and let town have some messy fun. He had a great time squishing, smelling, and even licking this activity, lol. It was a nice way to stimulate a lot of different senses.

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Color-Themed Treasure Baskets

Now that Paige is sitting pretty well and loving to explore things with her hands (and mouth too of course), I wanted to start making her more Treasure Baskets. Yesterday I made her her first color-themed Treasure Basket.

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I gathered up a bunch of baby-safe items that were all the color blue for her to play with. Our blue basket had a soft block, a cup with lid, a bowl, a spoon, a stacking cup, a stacking ring, a sensory ball, some shapes from a shape sorter, those linking rings, a couple of washcloths and a burp rag. You can use whatever objects you want for this. It’s very open-ended.

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Paige had a lot of fun playing with all the blue stuff. In a week I’ll probably rotate these items out in favor of a new color.