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Friday, October 4, 2013

Large Motor and Sensory Alphabet!


I am so excited to share this post! Every year I try to do something different with the learning letters for preschool so that I don’t get bored and so that my own kids and preschoolers don’t get boredSmile This year I decided to ignite as many senses as possible while exploring a letter! Also, I tried to involve large motor movement as well. I wanted the kids to wake up their whole body as they learned the letters in hopes that they would have fun and have better retention of the sounds. I made sure that they could see the letter, make the sound and use as many senses as possible to explore it!Smile

Letter Aa

For the letter A I bought those tiny school boy apples. Each child opened their mouth really wide while making the short A sound. Then they bite into the apple!


As they ate their apples they walked around to search all over the back yard for letter A’s that I drew with chalk. When they were done with their apple they fed to core to the chickens and then “Taught” the chickens the sound for the letter A. That was the best part! They used all 5 senses for this one and large motor!


Letter Bb

I drew capital and lower case B’s on our wall and on the ground. The kids would say, “B-B-B-bounce!!!!!” And then try to bounce the ball on the ground at the B’s. They were so excited when they got a double B by hitting one on the ground and it bouncing to hit one on the wall. This used large motor, and all of the senses minus taste;)


Letter Cc

This was tricky! I used a cake pan and aluminum foil to mold a C that I could fill with water and freeze. The kids touched it and explored it while we all said it was “C-C-C-cold”.


Another day I did it with just a pan of ice cubes:) the kids discovered that these cubes made an awesome CRAKING soud when they threw them on the cement. They all started saying “C-c-c-crack!”


Letter Dd

We did 2 things for the letter D. I put a letter D in the drum and they would look inside, say the letter and then play the sound, “d-ddddd-d-ddd-dd” they loved it!!!


We also did a Dinosaur Dig! My two homeschooling older kids (5 and 6) buried the dinosaurs for me and the big letter D.


While we dug we chanted, “D-d-dig”. And then when they found a dino they would say D-d-d-DINOSAUR!!! Hilarious! Think super Mario!


Stay tuned for E-H!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Having the “Pornography” Talk with Little Children

FYI: This is written by and LDS mom who believes Pornography is inappropriate at any age. I have boys but girls need these talks too!


I have been thinking of writing this post for a long time and was inspired to finally do it after answering a comment from a friend on Facebook. She was asking about her daughter going over to other peoples houses where the Dad stays home with the kids.

Samantha Drake Packer I always meet the parents and get to know them before I would let my kid go unsupervised with them. I also like to see their home before I let my child go unattended. Also I have the Porn talk, the private parts talk, and the weapons talk, with my kids when I know they are going to a new place with out me. I make sure they know that the most important thing is to tell me about it so they can feel safe and that I will never be upset with them:) It's just routine for us now. As for Dad vs. Mom I would be very weary of sending my daughter to a house with just a man in charge. I would have to know him and his wife really well. I wouldn't mind as much for my son but I would still be cautious. Men have different temptations then Women, we can't deny that in the name of equality.

Samantha Drake Packer P>S> I just realized "the Porn talk" sounds crazy lol It goes like this, "We wear clothes to keep our body modest right? So would it be ok to see someone with no clothes on? What about in a picture? If you see anything like that, I want you to look away and let Mommy know. I'll give you a big high five for doing the right thing:)"

The Jolly Green Giant Samantha Drake Packer, it didn't sound crazy!! I was actually going to ask how you go about that and there you went and answered my question. And the weapons talk...Good one! Hadn't even thought of that one! You are one smart mom!

So have you talked to your child about pornography? I first talked to my boys about it when they were 4 and 5. May seem young but, it was necessary. Already on family walks in our neighbor hood, My husband and I had found pornography DVDs just laying on the ground on three separate occasions:( We knew they would be exposed at some point and we wanted to prepare them. Also any friend I have talked to about it, had been exposed at, or before the age of 8. I remember seeing it at school, hearing kids talk about it, and finding it by accident before 8 years old and way more after:(

The “Talk”

It was so simple. They already knew that we keep our bodies covered to be modest so it was logical to them that we wouldn’t look at pictures of some one that was dressed immodest. Then we told them that if they ever saw pictures or things on the TV that didn’t seem modest to let us know. They would never be in trouble in fast we would be so happy that they told us and they would get a big high five(or hug or what ever your kid thinks is positive). The secret is what starts the shame cycle and causes the real damage.

So did it work? YES!

My son was playing a “find the difference” game on the kindle. It was Robin hood themed and it looked cutesy and cartoonish so I didn’t think much of it. Also it was the free App of the day. SO he went off to play and then brought it to me a few minutes later and said that he didn’t think it was modest. He showed me the picture and it was of maid Marian tied up with her cleavage popping out(cartoon). It was pretty tame but he recognized it. I think it is note worthy that he was enjoying the game and knew that I would turn it off once he told me. Because he was honest I gave him a high five and quickly deleted the game and gave him the choice of one of the other fun apps. He was thrilled!!! Since then there have been many times that they have recognized immodesty and turned away. I am so glad that they are getting practice and setting their standards BEFORE the hormones of puberty start raging!

DON’T Scare Them!

Make sure they know with any of the “Talks”(weapons, pornography, private parts, strangers, safety) that you trust your friends and humanity as a whole but you want them to know that there are SOME people who might make these choices and you want them to be prepared. I don’t want my children to feel like they need to be watching out for porn every where they go(although now days).

Let Other Parents Know

I let other parents(who will be alone with my kids) know that I have had these talks with my children so that when my child talks to them about it they will be ready. I also don’t want them to think that I think those things WILL happen in THEIR home. I also think it will keep anyone who does have those things in their house on guard since they know my child is aware and knows what to do:)

This is Important! This is a huge problem in today’s world and we need to prepare our children.

Have you had the Talk? How did it go? Any tips you’d like to add?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Egg Biscuits that you Can Freeze! Great for Extra Eggs!

I posted this on my other blog about homesteading but I thought Moms would really like it so I am posting it here as wellSmile


I have made these 3 times now and they are awesome! Great for a fast morning breakfast that is filling! Also when your hens are laying a lot, you can put these in the Freezer to store for later! Disclaimer: I am not fooling myself into thinking these are healthySmile but they are packed with protein and fill me up so I am not looking for junk to satisfy my hungerSmile


1. Scramble up eggs, sausage(I use TVP but if you use sausage cook it first), and cheese. You could also add peppers or spinach? What ever tickles your fancy, just make sure it is all cooked thoroughly(the stuff in the picture is not fully cooked yet).


2. Next open up a can of biscuits(I have have used several different kinds and they all worked great!) Stretch the biscuits one at a time like the picture below.


3. My son helped me with the pictureSmile Put a scoop of the cooked mixture into the middle and pinch 2 adjacent corners together and then the other 2.


Watch out for baby hands!!!


4. Plop them on a cookie sheet pinched side down. Don’t worry if they aren’t completely closed, they will bake together.


5. Bake at 350 until golden brown. The time on the biscuit can is pretty accurate but I usually go another minute or two.


Here’s what the bottom looks like after it bakes.


6. Eat one freshWinking smile and then let the rest cool, move them to the fridge and then the freezer. I store them all together in gallon size Ziploc bags.


When you are ready to eat a frozen one just put it in the microwave for 1 minute(depends on your microwave I guess).


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Play Pen School- Sensory Play Pen


Brandon is my first child to really use his playpen as a play pen. My other children have used them for sleep but never really for playing. Brandon is a very feisty baby and he has been having a hard with taking others toys and knocking down their buildings. My solution is the playpen but, only during school -free time(about 1 hour 3 times a week). When it is just my children I don’t use it because I want him to learn to be kind and my children to learn patients and kindness:) At first a few snacks and some baby toys were more then enough to keep him happy but then he started to get bored and cranky quickly! So know I am trying to come up with more engaging activities for him to do in his play pen. I’ll be posting more because I will have to keep this up for the next 2 months! I will be calling it playpen school:)

For this activity I used, pompoms, melon baller, tongs, little containers, and a big pretzel barrel! This kept him VERY happy for the full hour!!! I kept an eye on him and would stop to play a little. The older kids would also walk by and toss any that he threw out at him. He loved the visitors:)





Thursday, March 7, 2013

Toddler Activities

I get the question- “What activities should I do with my toddler?” so often that I decided to search through my blog and collect a bunch of pictures from toddler days!! These are all from about 12-24 months. they do not all have descriptions but it is pretty obvious from the pictures what it is:) Now when I get this question I can refer them to this link:) It is a very long post!

CAUTION: You know your child, please supervise them around small objects. Also follow their lead! Toddlers should be having fun! Not sitting at a desk;)

Sorting by color with ANYTHING is fun for toddlers! Make this simple mat using construction paper and laminating it! then you can sort anything!

Click the picture for a post all about playing outside with chalk! Toddlers love to play outside games and chalk is a great way to get them moving and thinking!


Sensory Tubs are a huge hit with toddlers. Search Sensory tub on my blog or on Google and you will find lots of ideas!

In this next picture you can see a bucket on the bottom left. I called it the messy bucket. This day it had a Gatorade bottle and checkers. toddlers love to fill and spill things of all kinds!

Pom poms go in the top, get them from the bottom hole!

Below you can see the messy bucket with balls and a scoop and basket. Also the cubes in the little yellow basket! Toddlers love to stack!!

Spooning flat marbles


Tiny plastic bears and metal containers


Stacking wooden blocks


One big pom pom with a table spoon and nesting cups


Nesting cups with little plastic cats


Golf tees to stick into the straw hole of a Red Robin kids cup


Small pom poms and a plastic rolling pin from a playdoh thing. She LOVES this one! When it gets full they start popping out of the bottom. One of the boys may have shown her how to shoot them out by blowing…hmmmm.


Sensory bottles(plastic test tubes). I made 4 for her at this time Glitter in water, Jewels in water, Beads to shake and the last one has a single marble to roll back and forth. She loves these and says “Ooooooo” as she shakes them around. She also loves putting them in the holder!


Shape sorters


Little hoops

(party section of the dollar store)


Halloween peg game(I grabbed a Christmas one at the dollar store that I know will be a big hit as well)


Color wheel (by crazyart at wal-mart)


Wood bead onto a dowel


Plastic Beads on a drink stirrer


Elmer’s Glitter glue on wood makes great sensory boards! You can do letters, numbers, shapes or colors! They can’t rip them off the wall like paper posters!