DIY Felt Board

image

This felt board was so easy to make (and cheap too!).  I bought a yard of blue felt at a fabric store for $2.99 and a sheet of blue foam board at Wal-Mart for a little over $2.  The project only cost about $6, and it could even be done for less.  I really only needed a half yard of the felt to cover the board and I know they have foam board at the Dollar Tree (so you could realistically end up spending only about $3 on this).

To make the felt board I ironed the blue felt then cut it to size, leaving a few inches of extra fabric on each side.  Then I grabbed my stapler and stapled the excess fabric to the back of the board, making sure to pull tight.  Then I mounted it to the wall and let Trevor have fun with it!

I bought several other colors of felt at the fabric store and plan on making a bunch of different scenes and objects for him to play with.  The first thing I made were felt hearts for Valentine’s Day.  More on that later…

Firetruck Painting

To go along with Trevor’s new interest in firefighting I created another fun activity for him to do.  It is a great sensory experience and fine motor skill builder too 🙂

I taped some white easel paper to his tray and set out some paints, shaving cream, a spray bottle filled with water, and 3 fire truck toys.  After he sat down I poured some red, yellow, and orange paint onto the paper for the “fire” and then sprayed shaving cream on it for the “smoke”.  Then he vroomed his fire trucks through the fire and smoke to save the day!  I also gave him a spray bottle filled with water to use as his “fire hose” so that he could fight the fires!  He had a blast spraying his trucks and the paper (and the wall, they tray, himself, and almost his baby sister – note to self:  supervise kids with spray bottles closely, lol).  I was so proud that he finally has the hand strength to use a spray bottle and he had so much fun fighting a fire!  It was cool for him to see the shaving cream melt away when it was sprayed with the water.  He wanted more and more shaving cream on his trucks and was a big mess by the time we finished.  Definitely a successful sensory experience!

image

The paper was pretty soaked by the time he was done.  I was just going to throw it out (since this is definitely more of a process over product kind of project), but I decided to blot the paper and soak up some of the water.  Then I cut another piece of paper off his easel roll and smoothed it on top of the other piece.  It created a cool, pale, marbled effect on the paper and turned out pretty neat.  The soaked paper on the tray was then just thrown away.

I hope all of your little firefighters enjoy this activity too!

comeplayatkidsco-op-e1356053618414

Sensational Satur..um..Sunday: Valentine’s Day Sensory Bin

So it’s not Saturday, but I thought I’d post this fun sensory bin idea anyway.  Yesterday was a crazy day and I didn’t get a chance to write a post.  This Valentine’s Day sensory bin is lots of fun though, so I wanted to share.

Sensory bins are a great way to stimulate the senses, as well as to develop motor, cognitive, and language skills.  You can use lots of different objects to create a sensory bin, but this is what we used to make our Valentine’s Day themed one:

  • Rice, dyed pink (to learn how to dye rice check out this page)
  • Fuzzy hearts (found these at the Dollar tree – they had stems attached to them, but I removed those)
  • Small heart-shaped boxes (great for fine motor development and hide and seek games)
  • Heart-shaped clappers (to stimulate the auditory sense)
  • Heart-shaped glow stick (to stimulate the visual sense)
  • Heart-shaped table scatter (the same stuff we used for our Valentine’s Day Sticky Collage – it’s great because it has a rough texture, as opposed to the smoothness of the plastic heart boxes and softness of the fuzzy hearts)
  • Salt dough hearts we made
  • Scoops and funnel
  • Heart-shaped toy with button (because Trevor loves buttons!)

He thought the glowing heart was pretty neat:

Using the heart glow stick to stir the rice:

Shaking the clappers:

Digging for the glow stick:

The fun doesn’t really start until you get in the bin too:

Make-It Monday: Valentine’s Day Sticky Collage

Trevor loves to do sticky collages (like Our Fall Tree and Let it Snow).  And who can blame him?  They’re so fun!

What you need:

  • clear contact paper
  • heart shaped table scatter (we found ours at the Dollar Tree)
  • glitter

How to make it:

  1. Cut a piece of contact paper off of the roll.
  2. Tape it, sticky side out, to a window or glass door.
  3. Stick your heart shapes to the contact paper (this is a great way to work on colors and shapes too).
  4. When you’re finished adding all the hearts you want to add, carefully remove the contact paper from the window and tape (sticky side up of course) to a tabletop.
  5. Shake glitter all over it!
  6. When you’ve added all the glitter you want, add another piece of contact paper to the top of the collage to seal it.
  7. Hang in the window and enjoy (we hang ours with a suction cup, ribbon, and 2 clothespins).

Sticking a heart on the contact paper:

Choosing another heart:

He loves making sticky collages!

Time to add some glitter:

Shake, shake, shake:

Checking out his masterpiece:

It looks pretty cool when the sun beams through it:

Make-It Monday: Valentine’s Day Window Art

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching I decided to start in on some Valentine’s art projects with Trevor. The first project we made were Valentine’s Day themed window clings.  They aren’t quite like the type of window art you buy at the store, but they’re still super cute.  And making a project together always makes it better than buying it in the store anyway 🙂

What you need:

  • White school glue
  • Food coloring
  • Glitter or glitter glue (optional)
  • Water
  • Cookie cutters
  • Waxed paper

How to make it:

  1. Add some food coloring to your bottle of glue until it reaches your desired color.
  2. Add the glitter or glitter glue to the bottle and shake well to mix.
  3. Put just a few drops of water into the colored glue to thin it out slightly.
  4. Shake it up again.
  5. Place your cookie cutters (we used hearts) onto a sheet of waxed paper.
  6. Squeeze the colored glue inside the cookie cutters and spread to fill the entire cookie cutter.  (Make sure your glue is thick enough to completely coat the inside.  Our glue was thin in a few spots and one of our hearts didn’t turn out that well).
  7. Let them dry completely.  This may take a few days, depending on the thickness of the glue and your climate.
  8. Once completely dry, peel them off the waxed paper and out of the cookie cutters.
  9. Wet the dried glue shapes with water and stick to your window.
  10. Enjoy homemade holiday beauty!

Checking out the cookie cutters:

Helping squeeze some glue:

Spreading the glue:

Glue is dried and they’re ready to put on the window:

Putting a heart in water:

Helping push them onto the glass:

Pointing to his beautiful heart window art:

Make-It Monday: Styrofoam Christmas Tree and Paper Plate Wreath

We made several more Christmas crafts over the last couple of weeks.  I thought I’d share 2 of our favorite ones with you 🙂

Styrofoam Christmas Tree

What you need:

For the tree:

  • Styrofoam cone
  • Green paint
  • Pine needles (optional)
  • Green glitter

For the star:

  • Foil
  • Cardboard
  • Glue
  • Toothpick

For the skirt:

  • Felt (or paper)
  • Stickers

How to make it:

The tree:

  1. Paint Styrofoam cone with green paint (we used our hands and some cut Christmas tree branches to do this)
  2. Add the pine needles and glitter while paint is still wet.
  3. When dry, add star and set on tree skirt.

The star:

  1. Draw a star shape on cardboard.
  2. Cut out.
  3. Wrap and glue foil around toothpick.
  4. Add glue to one side of cardboard star and stick to foil sheet.
  5. Put foil-covered toothpick on top of the other side of the cardboard star.
  6. Add glue to second side of star/toothpick and top with foil.
  7. Cut out finished star shape.

Tree skirt:

  1. Cut a circle out of felt (or use paper).
  2. Decorate with stickers, or whatever else you wish to use.

It makes a great centerpiece!

—–

Paper Plate Wreath

What you need:

  • Paper plate
  • Glue
  • Green tissue paper, torn into pieces
  • Stickers
  • Glitter
  • Ribbon

How to make it:

  1. Cut the inner part of the paper plate out, leaving the outer ring intact.
  2. Spread some glue on the paper plate ring.
  3. Press the green tissue paper pieces into the glue (you can do this one at a time, or follow Trevor’s lead and dump the container of tissue paper pieces on your plate and cover it in one fell swoop).
  4. Once the tissue paper has been glued down, add your stickers (or any other decorations you’d like.  Trevor was only interested in stickers the day we did this.  I also set out pom poms and tinsel, but he wasn’t interested in those).
  5. Add some more glue over the top of your decorated wreath, and sprinkle glitter over the top.
  6. Once dry, hang with a ribbon.