Fizz, Pop, Bang! Playful Science and Math Activities

Fizz, Pop, Bang! Playful Maths and Science Activities ebook - buy now!

I’m so excited to share the Fizz, Pop, Bang! Playful Science and Math Activities ebook with you! You might remember that I also collaborated on two other fantastic ebooks with NurtureStore. They’ve both had so much support and positive feedback from readers, I just know that you’re all going to love this ebook too.

What will I find in the Fizz, Pop, Bang! ebook?

  • Fizz, Pop, Bang! has lots of hands-on, super awesome fun science and math activities for kids.
  • All activities are all play based, making them perfect for kids and a great way to have fun while learning.
  • You can use these activities for weekend projects, school, homeschool, summer camps, anytime!
  • There are so many inspiring ideas that are really practical with everything all in one place.
  • The ebook features gorgeous photos and easy to follow step-by-step guides.
  • The ebook includes 40 ideas for children aged 3 to 8, with twenty printable resources and additional links to over 80 more activities.

Take a sneak peek at what’s inside with this video:

How do I get my copy? Gimme, gimme, gimme!

  • Fizz, Pop, Bang! Playful Science and Math Activities is an ebook. You can buy and download your copy on any device (computer, tablet, phone) from anywhere in the world RIGHT NOW! You can print it on your printer at home, or read it straight from your phone, computer or tablet. I know, cool right?
  • get your copy for the awesome launch price of $7.99 (USD). Don’t worry about working out the exchange rate, it’s all done for you when you get your copy. You’re welcome :) Get in quick, this price is only available until November 9th 2014.

Fizz, Pop, Bang! Playful Maths and Science Activities ebook - buy now!

Have fun playing :)

Guess My Picture

Guess My Picture - A drawing and language game for preschoolers

Over the weekend my immediate family gathered to remember my brother, Ryan, who died this time last year. We released some balloons, drank a beer and remembered our happiest and fondest moments with him. We cried, laughed, hugged and cried again. Ryan’s three boys were there, along with their cousins, nine kids in all. Ryan’s ashes are in a beautiful garden with winding pathways, leafy gum trees, a big open lawn and a fountain. It’s just perfect for kids, they love it there. They’re all very young, and don’t really understand the finality of death.  It makes it very hard to stay sad for long when you’re surrounding by laughing, playing children. I hope that Ryan would have loved the way that we paid tribute to him.

After the memorial I went to my mum’s house along with some of the family. It’s such a strange thing, grief and loss. It’s so intense, emotions are so heightened. But the everyday, mundane moments continue. “Do you want a sandwich?”, “Mum, let’s play hide and seek”, “Tell me about your holiday”. It feels surreal to carry on with life, as normal, when someone so important is missing, forever. But you do. Carry on.

Kids are the BEST for distraction from grief, for me anyway. They just want to play. Pebble was tired and cranky that day, we’d let her stay up too late the night before, I guess we were too weighed down our own sadness to worry about bed time. I needed something to distract her, so I suggested we play this game. Her cousins and Uncle soon joined in too, then Nana too. I think I’ll always think of this game as “The Game I Played When I Didn’t Want To Think About My Dead Brother”, but that’s kinda wordy so I’ll call it, “Guess My Picture”.

Guess My Picture

For children age 3 and up.

Minimum 2 players.

You will need

  • paper
  • something to draw with – pens/pencils/crayons/markers

How to play

  • Player 1 draws a picture on the paper. The first person to guess the picture wins that round. Player 1 writes the initial of the winner next to their picture. This is good letter recognition and writing practice, but it’s not essential to the game, so skip that bit if you prefer.
  • Player 2 takes a turn to draw a picture while the other players guess what they’re drawing.
  • Continue on until everyone has had a turn, then start all over again.

It’s very simple, and very addictive. At one point we had three generations and eight people playing! We kept it very casual, with players coming in and out of the game and toddlers scribbling on the page alongside our game. Sometimes, when pictures were very tricky to guess, we asked for clues. I hope you enjoy this game too.

Guess My Picture - A drawing and language game for preschoolers Guess My Picture - A drawing and language game for preschoolers Guess My Picture - A drawing and language game for preschoolers Guess My Picture - A drawing and language game for preschoolers

How to you cope with grief and loss?

Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers

Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers

Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers

I’m pretty open about the fact that these days, I rarely set up paint play for the kids. It was much more common occurrence before Rocky came along. These days it’s watercolours all the way! They’re so easy to set up and clean up, I just can’t resist. But Pebble misses her REAL paint, her sloppy, slide-across-the-page paint. Last week she asked if we could get the paints out I said ‘yes’. She almost did a double take!

Rocky hasn’t had much chance to explore these paints before, so we set up tray of paints, some paint brushes, some paper and I left them to it stood nearby to make sure Rocky didn’t eat it or tip it on his head. The paper was very quickly abandoned in favour of smearing the paint across the old coffee table that we use for outdoor art and play. Finger painting, hand painting, belly, elbow and feet painting!

Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and PreschoolersTips for Paint Play with Toddlers and PreschoolersTips for Paint Play with Toddlers and PreschoolersTips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers

At times it got a little crazy. Rocky decided halfway through that he’d like to play with the space hopper… while still covered in wet paint. Then he stumbled around the backyard and landed hands first on the BBQ, leaving his sticky wet paint mark on it’s cover. But apart from that we did ok – we got messy without getting MESSY!

After some fun with smearing, Pebble turned back to her paper and starting printing. She also made some paint resist art work on the coffee table by splodging, smearing and slopping paint on top of a piece of paper on the table, then pulling the paper back to reveal a perfectly rectangle space beneath.

Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers

Once the kids were getting tired of the painting we added a big squirt (and then another and then another) of dish washing liquid and turned the hose onto the table. Their excitement was renewed as the paint frothed and soaped and bubbled. They played together until the table was all clean, then played in the suds as they gurgled in the grass. Then I threw both kids in the bath and scrubbed them clean! Here are my tips for happy paint play with toddlers and preschoolers:

Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers Tips for Paint Play with Toddlers and Preschoolers

Tips for Paint Play for Toddlers and Preschoolers

  1. dress in old clothes (that includes you too!)
  2. distract the kids with something else and set up all the equipment before you invite them to play
  3. have a bucket of water and an old towel ready for clean up (or play near a hose)
  4. remove anything from the area that you don’t want to get covered in paint (including space hoppers!)
  5. breathe! Relax! Let it go! Mess is good!
  6. make cleaning up part of the play and get the kids to help
  7. go straight in to the bath after play and get scrubbed up
  8. distract the kids some more while you clean up yourself and the rest of the mess if needed (a snack and a pile of books or a favourite TV show work for me).

Do you embrace messy play? Or do you avoid it like the plague?

Halloween Activities for Kids

15 Halloween Activities for Kids

Here in Australia, Halloween has only recently started to be embraced. When I was a kid I only went trick or treating once and that was because my teachers that year happened to be really into Halloween. We had a Halloween class party and of course I needed to show that costume off to the neighbourhood.

Where I live now our property is a bit secluded from the street. I guess the kids are too freaked out to come to our door because every year I buy treats to give out and every year I end up having to eat them myself. Oh well (mwahahaha).

I know some Aussie’s are dead set against Halloween but I don’t mind it at all. It’s a bit of fun. Here’s some fab Halloween activities for kids thanks to the Kids Co-Op.

15 Halloween Activities for Kids

  1. Countdown to Halloween Ghost Chart (Edventures with Kids)
  2. DIY Paper Mache Trick or Treat Bucket (You Are the Roots)
  3. Monster Play Ideas (Octavia and Vicky)
  4. Cute and Creepy Mummy Garland (Edventures with Kids)
  5. An Invitation to Make Monsters (Multicrafting Mummy)
  6. Online Halloween Games for Kids (Octavia and Vicky)
  7. Halloween Cupcakes (B-Inspired Mama)
  8. Halloween Lacing Cards (Tot Schooling)
  9. Glow in the Dark Lanterns (Nuturestore)
  10. Printable Googley Eyes Monsters (Tot Schooling)
  11. Toilet Paper Roll Ghosts (Dabbling Mama)
  12. Spider Snacks (Octavia and Vicky)
  13. Halloween Clothespin Pattern Sticks (Lalymom)
  14. Fuzzy Wuzzy Pom Pom Monsters (Our Little House in the Country)
  15. Cardboard Box Monsters (Our Little House in the Country)

Do you do Halloween in your country? Where are you from?

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Pretend Play: Construction Site

Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky}

Sponsored by Kidspot for Hasbro

Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky}
I am just in love with seeing my two kids play together. I feel like they’ve grown up so much, especially since spending four days away from them to attend the Problogger conference recently. The day that I got home I noticed how they were chatting to each other (or Pebble, aged 4.5, was chatting and Rocky, aged 18 months, was listening and occassionally babbling back). They shared toys and experiences together, drawing with chalk or building a cubby and clamboring in and out of it. For Pebble these experiences are definitely all about pretend play, she’s constantly narrating a play scene. For Rocky I think this play is about joining in with his sister and figuring out how things work.

Of course these play scenes aren’t always a carefree, whimsical love fest – they are siblings after all! They have their fair share of fights about who sat where first, who gets to play with which toy and who punched who in the nose. Unfortunately for Rocky he’s not able to tell us his side of the story yet, so he doesn’t really get a fair trial! With practice they will get better at sharing each others space. Right?

I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to introduce a pretend play scene for them to share. I collected a few bits and pieces from around the house and put them together with an awesome new toy sent to me by Hasbro, and this is what I came up with.

Pretend Play Construction Site

You will need a collection of items that can be used to represent a construction site, eg:

  • rocks
  • roads (either a play mat or create your own roads using masking tape)
  • toy cars and trucks (we used the Hasbro Diggin’ Rigs Buzz Saw)
  • cardboard boxes to represent buildings
  • tin cans to represent barrels
  • dolly pegs dressed in fluro paper ‘jackets’ to represent construction workers
  • Play-Doh for making boulders, walls, work helmets…. whatever you need!
  • popsticks to represent levers, scaffolding, ramps, etc

To create the scene (there really are no rules to making a play scene, but this is how we did it):

  • Pebble and I used masking tape to create roads on the floor.
  • We placed the rocks inside a cardboard box with two sides removed, giving that play space a boundary and also making it easy to pack up.
  • Pebble and Rocky helped me to get the other bits and pieces on the scene and it was soon clear that I needed to get out of their way so that they could PLAY!

Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky} 5 Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky} Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky}

Rocky was most fascinated with the Diggin Rigs Buzz Saw and spent a good deal of time just pushing it around on the roads. Which was perfect for Pebble, it gave her the space to begin her intricate narrative and set up the characters of the play. Soon they were working together, building Play-Doh walls, trucking rocks from once place to another, and ‘sawing’ objects in half.

Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky} Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky} Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky} Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky}

Extend the play:

  • Children bring their own real world experiences to their play. Drive by or visit a real construction site and talk about what you can see.
  • If there are no construction sites near you then try searching YouTube for videos of construction sites or tools in action. I found some cool videos when I searched for “buzz saw truck”. Who knew?!
  • Add paper and pencils for children to make their own signs to add to the construction site.

Giveaway

Pretend Play Construction Site {via Octavia and Vicky}

Thanks to the awesome people at Hasbro I have three Diggin Rigs Buzz Saw toys to giveaway to three lucky Octavia and Vicky readers. The Diggin Rigs Buzz Saw playset includes a detachable arm, two plastic blades, an excruder rail and four cans of Play-Doh.

Open to Australian residents only. Entries close midnight AEST 22/9/14.

Hasbro Play-Doh Diggin’ Rigs Buzzsaw Playset