Showing posts with label dramatic play. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dramatic play. Show all posts

Books to Celebrate World Animal Day!


Disclosure: I was sent copy of these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Did you know today (October 4th) is World Animal Day? It is celebrate annually on October 4th which is also the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi, patron saint of animals. I know our church always has a blessing of the pets day around October 4th to honor St. Francis. The idea behind World Animal Day is to work for increasing the status of animals and helping keep them from becoming endangered and/or extinct. (Source and more information on World Animal Day.) Hazel is a big animal lover and especially loved learning about animals when she was younger. She was a huge Wild Kratts fan. Over the years we have shared many animal themed crafts, books and activities. Today we are going to share two more animal-themed books in celebration of World Animal Day. The first is a book I wish was around when Hazel was younger. It is Howl Like a Wolf! by Kathleen Yale and illustrated by Kaley McKean. 

Doll Food Finds

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I haven't shared with you any of cheap doll finds lately and have had a few of these sitting there waiting to be shared so here they are. Now the first finds I found around the start of the school year. I think they were either at Target or Michael's but am not sure. The first is a burger pencil sharpener and french fries eraser set. They are on one of Hazel's dishes for her dolls to show you the size.

Christmas Coloring & Crafting & Creative Play -- a Crafty Weekends Review & Link Party

Disclosure: I was sent these products free of charge. All opinions in my review are my own and I did not receive any other compensation. As always I am providing links to the book for your convenience.

I have not been posting as much the past week or so between the holiday, spending time with family and fighting the horrible cold. As a result I am going to share two books with you today. One is for adults and the other is for kids (and is definitely going to be on my great gifts of the year list!!). We will start with the first book which I was planning on reviewing for Relaxing Friday, however it didn't happen. The book is Johanna's Christmas by Johanna Basford. Her coloring books are among the top ones. Over the summer I had the pleasure of sharing her Magical Jungle with you. 

Bible Fun -- Summertime Fun!

Disclosure: I was given copies of these books free of charge for this review. All opinions in my review are my own and I did not receive any other compensation.  As in all my reviews I am providing links for your ease, but receive no compensation.

Yesterday I shared a book about the importance of adding fun to our lives and the start of my new series--Summertime Fun. For our first Summertime Fun I thought I would share some fun resources for fun with the Bible. Since Hazel goes to a Christian school, I know during the summer there will be less church and Bible time for her, so I wanted to make sure to give her some resources to keep up with her Bible time. To start we are sharing two of Marcia Goldlist's The Bible in Rhyme. Marcia emailed me e-copies of Enjoying the Book of Esther and Enjoying the Book of Ruth

Princess Hazel -- I See Me! Personalized Book Review for National Princess Week

* Disclosure: The Gymboree and Little Passport links in this post are affiliate links and I may earn a small commission at no cost to you.
Disclosure: I See Me! Inc.  gave me a copy of this book and ornament free of charge. All opinions in my review are my own and I did not receive any other compensation. As in all my reviews I am providing links for your ease, but receive no compensation.

Did you know there is a National Princess Week every April? It is always the last full week in April. It started in 2012 when Julie Andrews, Target and Disney joined together to create it. Julie Andrews's website says "Believe in yourself! Only then can you truly let your sparkle out for all the world to see." (Source) The website also has a post of 30 Ways to Celebrate National Princess Week.  We chose a fun way to celebrate and started a bit early. I See Me! sent us the Princess Personalized Book. All I have to say is Hazel was really excited when it came! 

Holiday Gift Suggestions--Books for Kids to Create Their Own Play

Disclosure: I was sent these books to review free of charge from Storey Publishing. All opinions in this post are my own. I did not receive any other compensation for this review. I am including links to each item for your convenience but do not receive anything if you purchase them.

In honor of Black Friday I thought I would share some fun books for kids of different ages to create their own fun and play. The first is Teddy Bear Doctor  by Deanna F. Cook, and we have already reviewed this amazing book. This is our go to gift for Hazel's friends. We buy a copy of the book with a small stuffed animal and it is perfect! The age recommendation is ages 3-8. Some of the crafts in the book would be difficult for a 3-year-old, but it is perfect for the 5-8 range.

Teddy Bear Doctor -- Book Review

Disclosure: I was sent this book to review free of charge from Storey Publishing. All opinions in this post are my own. I did not receive any other compensation for this review. I am including links to each item for your convenience but do not receive anything if you purchase them.

Does your child watch Doc McStuffins? Or just like to play doctor with his or her stuffed animals? This book is perfect for him or her!! Hazel has two or three doctors kits (I think one is a veterinarian kit). She has always liked to play doctor and often dreams of being a toy doctor like Doc McStuffins. She really wanted the Doc McStuffins kit because she hoped when she pushed the stethoscope button Ducky would come alive. When we take our cats to the veterinarian, Hazel gets to listen to the cats and her own, and the veterinarian's and my and whomever will let her heart beat with our veterinarian's stethoscope. She loves going!! Needless to say when I saw Teddy Bear Doctor: A Let's Make and Play Book by Deanna F. Cook I knew Hazel would love it.

Junior Explorers Multicultural Product Review

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 Disclosure: I was sent these items to review free of charge from Junior Explorers as part of the Multicultural Kids Product Promotion Services. All opinions in this post are my own. I did not receive any other compensation for this review.

Today I have the pleasure of reviewing a monthly packet from Junior Explorers. We received the Amazon Jaguar Mission packet. Hazel was really excited for this. In our packet we had many things including an introduction letter with your mission code, a checklist to make sure you have everything or your mission, information sheet on the region, stickers and temporary tatoos, 

Sharing Saturday 15-20

Thank  you to everyone who shared last week!! There were a few less than usual, but we still have some great features! This week they are not labeled like they usually are. Enjoy!! Be sure to go back to last week's party to see even more great ideas.

Sharing Saturday 15-18

Have you entered my current giveaway? This is one you do not want to miss!!
Sharing Saturday Button

Thank  you to everyone who shared last week!! I am blown away by the creativity and amazing posts shared. These features are just a sampling of the posts shared. I hope you will go and check them all out! This week our features consist of  May Features, Educational Features and Food and Play Dough Features. 

Hazel's Science Center

Last week I chaperoned Hazel's class field trip to Seacoast Science Center in New Hampshire. It was a fun place for the kids to learn even more about the ocean and really end their ocean unit. They ended it the next day with watching Finding Nemo. Hazel liked the science center better. The time at the science center began with a demonstration/class for the kids. First an employee presented about tide pools and the animals found at different levels of the tide pool and then they divided the kids into two groups to have some hands-on experience with the animals.

Groundhog Masks inspired by the Wild Kratts with free pattern

Hazel's favorite television show is The Wild Kratts. It is on PBS and features Chris and Martin Kratt in real life who go into cartoon to explore different animals lives. In cartoons they have all sorts of great technology including creature power suits that allow them to change into the animals. Of course it is not on enough for Hazel so we watch it On Demand often. Since she was home all last week we have been watching the four or so shows that are On Demand over and over. One of the episodes is an Episode from Season 2 called Groundhog Wake Up. (You can see the full episode here for $1.99.) I am sure it is On Demand since Groundhog Day is fast approaching. On the show they make a map on their Creature Pods (I think that is what they are called) after scanning a real groundhog's burrow. Hazel decided to use her play tent as her burrow with the tunnel as one of the entrance tunnels. Watching her play groundhog gave me an idea.
Groundhog, eating.jpg
"Groundhog, eating" by D. Gordon E. Robertson - Own work.
Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Ponyella--where Fairy Tales in Different Cultures meets Virtual Book Club for Kids

While looking at books by Laura Numeroff, I discovered she had a horse version of Cinderella. So today, Fairy Tales in Different Cultures meets Virtual Book Club for Kids. We are presenting Ponyella by Laura Numeroff and Nate Evans.

Noah's Ark

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Hazel and I read her story Bible every night at bedtime. We read through it once skipping around a bit and then started at the beginning again. Hazel loved the story of Noah's Ark. I knew I had bought ages ago a Shrinky Dink Noah's Ark kit when it was on sale or clearance. I had put it away for the right time. I also discovered there are hundreds of books about Noah's Ark. Today we will share some of the traditional stories that follow along with the Bible. Hazel loves when we read a Noah's Ark book.

Most of these books we took out of the library, but some I also found at the used book store. The amazing thing is I didn't take out all of the Noah's Ark children's books at the library, because there were so many. Again these are the ones that tell the story the same as the Bible. I will share others another time.

My sister had given Hazel a wooden Noah's ark toy many years ago. Hazel loves the idea of it, however the top floor never stays in and the roof of the top never stays on correctly plus she is missing many of the animals. Hazel now plays with it usually more as a storage place, house or something but without all the pieces together. 

So after reading many of the books, I pulled out the Shrinky Dinks one Saturday. Hazel and I had fun coloring them in together. Don't you love the zebra colors? Hazel did them. A hint for coloring them is to put white paper underneath so you can see what you are coloring (unless you are coloring white of course).

Then we put them on a pan and watched them shrink.
Then once they cooled they turn harder and the kit came with stands for them.
The kit also came with a ark to put together as well as some other animals. Steve took on the job of putting the ark together for us.
Now Hazel has two Noah's ark toys. She really loved playing with this one. Here is the other side.
Stay tuned for some more Noah's Ark stories and crafts!!

Ice Cream Shop--Dramatic Play

While touring a school yesterday (this is part of the stress and such I have been dealing with), Hazel had the best time playing with the ice cream shop that was set up in the PreK classroom. I promised her that if we continued the tour and left the room we would set one up at home. The set up in the classroom was simple--tins with large pom poms as scoops of ice cream labeled with ice cream flavors, two ice cream scoops, bowls, an empty root beer bottle and fancy cups for the root beer floats, spoons, a cash register and a telephone and a blackboard with the prices and such.
Bowl of Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

We of course did it with a bit more creativity. I added black dots to the white pom poms to make chocolate chip ice cream. (Hazel has informed me I need to make some cookie dough ice cream next.) We also thought about some toppings.
Using smaller pom poms for cherries, marshmallows, nuts, chocolate chips and tiny pom poms for candies. Then we put some longer skinny beads in a sprinkle jar for rainbow sprinkles.
Bowl of Chocolate Ice Cream with Sprinkles
Oh, the classroom also had some plastic ice cream cones. It took us awhile to find something to use, but we found these scented bubble ones. Our plan is to dump out the bubble liquids into our supplies for outside and just keep the ice cream cones. We need to do this with our "soda" bottle as well.
I bought her two scoops at the Dollar Tree as well as the plastic bowls. I found chocolate colored pom poms at Michaels and then discovered A.C. Moore had bags that only had the two inch pom poms in them (but no browns). We also found our sign/placemat at the Christmas Tree Shop. I added Hazel's nickname and shop to it.
Then I printed labels for the ice cream containers. I invaded our Tuperware cabinet and also picked up some at the Dollar Tree.

She now has nine flavors: strawberry, vanilla, black raspberry, blue raspberry, blueberry lemonade, chocolate, chocolate chip, orange sherbet, and lemon sherbet. Oh, and apparently she has an assistant.
But be careful when ordering, the assistant likes to attack feet if they get too close.
Hazel has no idea what a root beer float is, but she had to have the glasses like the classroom did. So we bought a few and got the bubble stuff in a "soda" bottle.
Root Beer Float
I tried to explain it to her, but since she has never liked anything to drink that is carbonated she really does not know what soda is.

Black Raspberry with Nuts

Now this is her favorite thing to play. She told me in bed tonight that she could not wait to play ice cream shop in the morning. 
Chocolate Ice Cream with a Cherry on Top

I think my activity tonight will be to find the instructions for felt popsicles I once saw on-line. 
Adding Sprinkles to Strawberry Ice Cream

Oh, and she is packing some of it up so she can take it in a truck and go around town. Her truck is a series of chairs and things all lined up behind her rocking horse (which she is really too big for but will not let us put it away). 

Ok, off to find some popsicle patterns. Have a great night/day! Do you want some ice cream?

Play blueberries

We had a busy morning. Hazel and I made banana blueberry pancakes for breakfast and then it was off to Founder's Day, our town's celebration of when it was founded and basically all the schools and local organizations day to fundraise with raffles, games, and food. Hazel had a blast.

A simple "homemade" toy to make. Hazel loves blueberries and she loves playing with her kitchen toys. As I looked at an empty carton from blueberries I came up with this. Buy wooden unfinished beads (I bought two different sizes for variety) and paint them blue then put in a cardboard blueberry container.
Unfinished beads in container
To paint them I put them in a gallon plastic bag and poured some of Hazel's tempera paint. Then sealed the bag and shook and rubbed. Then dumped them onto wax paper to dry. Very easy and little mess. Try to make sure they aren't touching so you won't have any stick together.
Drying "blueberries"
Finished Product
We had a discussion about not eating them since they can be choking hazards for small children. I think I got it through her head that they cannot go in her mouth since they are pretend blueberries. Another easy kitchen craft is to buy the wooden eggs at a craft store (Michaels AC Moore, etc.) and put them in a cardboard egg carton. I saw this at Hazel's school and loved it. I saved an egg carton and put the eggs I had already bought for her in. I need to buy more to have a full dozen though. At the school she loved taking them out and putting them in.