Easter Egg Printable

Easter Egg colors1With the Easter holiday approaching, I’ve really wanted to keep the focus on the true spirit of the holiday, Christ’s resurrection, but I certainly don’t want to toss out our family traditions of Easter egg hunts and baskets.

So, here is one attempt to make our traditions support our faith more.  I had my husband make this printable for us to accompany dying Easter eggs.  The girls colored each section and then we cut the pieces and turned it into a puzzle. (My girls had a very hard time leaving the white section blank).  I laminated the sections to help it last.

Download Easter Egg Colors Printable here

P1020332

 

“Jesus Loves Me” & Valentines

We did a lot to get ready for Valentine’s Day so I shouldn’t have been surprised when this morning on the actual holiday, the girls wanted to do Valentine’s Day things.  We had the activities from my previous Valentine post, but they wanted something different.  Thinking of the idea of Valentine’s Day, love, I decided to quick go with a Jesus Loves Me theme for today.  We did some quick, easy crafts, and sang the song A LOT.  🙂

Skills: religion, art, music, letter recognition, shape recognition
Prep: low
Supplies: Paper, crayons, glue, ribbon,


We sang “Jesus Loves Me” quite a bit today.  The girls really liked it, especially since they could sing along pretty easily.  You can find lyrics and the tune here.  We also colored mini-books about the song that I found here.

We then made these very easy door decorations that I found at here at DLTK (a great website).  The plan was for Mia and Zoe to color the pieces and add the foam hearts to it.  However, the girls had other ideas.  I had them practice cutting scrap paper with safety scissors while I cut out the craft pieces.  They got so caught up with their scissors and then gluing on the pieces that they refused to do anymore coloring.  Maybe later…  And hopefully yours will look a little brighter and more colorful.

When the girls wake up from their nap, we are doing a heart scavenger hunt that I found here.  I’m having the girls use the hearts they find to make Valentines for each other.

By the way, here is what Mia moved on to after her door hanger, since she just couldn’t get enough pasting paper.  Luckily I had a few things like this on hand so she could keep going.

City Dog, Country Frog

Talking about loss with a little one can be very hard.  This picture book by Mo Willems is very simple but very powerful and a good way to prepare a young child to say good-bye to a loved one.  It tells the story of a city dog making friends with a frog out in the country.  Each season they do something different–frog games, dog games, and remembering games. Then in the winter the frog is gone, leaving the dog to eventually meet a chipmunk in the spring.  The beautiful watercolor pictures really capture each season both literally and metaphorically.  The text is subtle but opens the door for the discussion of losing someone you love–a family member passing away, a dog dying, a friend moving away.  I’ll be honest, I still cry sometimes when reading City Dog, Country Frog, because it captures the cycle of a relationship so well, especially the winter of grieving and the spring of moving on while keeping their memory alive.

Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree

The girls love Christmas trees so much this holiday season that I decided to do a little mini-theme on them, inspired by the classic Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree by Robert E. Barry.  In the story wealthy Mr. Willowby gets a huge tree that doesn’t fit in his house so he cuts off the top.  The top is passed along where once again it is too big and the top gets chopped.  Mr. Willowby ends up providing many with a Christmas tree, including the maid, the bears, and the mice.

We did felt board stories, learned about the life cycle of a tree, sang songs, and even made our own little trees, all leading up to decorating our family Christmas tree. We actually spread the everything out over two days, setting up the tree the first day and actually decorating it the second after all of our activities..

Skills: counting, science, math concepts (classification),fine motor, art, music, letter recognition
Prep: medium (if you have the supplies it really is a low prep time)

 Felt Board Christmas Trees

Supplies: felt board, green felt (I used two pieces of green felt from the craft store)

I cut out 10 fir trees out of green felt with the trees starting small and getting progressively bigger. I then layered the trees on the felt board to make one big tree.  As we read the following poem, we would take a tree off of the big one and add it to the board so that the number of trees would grow out of the bits of one tree just like in Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree.

One Christmas tree big and strong
Two Christmas trees, one short, one long

There are three trees so cute and green
One big, one small, one in between

Counting trees, one, two, three, four
I wonder if I’ll see some more

On the board now there are five
Those trees are doing a Christmas jive

All different trees are in the mix
So now our trees will number six

If I add yet another tree
Then seven trees stand before me

Oh wow isn’t it so great
All our trees add up to eight

In front of me I see a line
Of Christmas trees that number nine

A forest now we do see
A forest full of ten fir trees

While the trees were all out we looked at which one were bigger and smaller and counted them again on the board.  Then we sang the following song based on 10 Little Indians:

One merry, two merry, three merry Christmas trees, Four merry, five merry, six merry Christmas trees, Seven merry, eight merry, nine merry Christmas trees, Ten merry Christmas trees there.

Ten merry, nine merry, eight merry Christmas trees, Seven merry, six merry, five merry Christmas trees, Four merry, three merry, two merry Christmas trees, One merry Christmas tree there.

Life Cycle of a Fir Tree

Ahead of time, I printed out pictures of the different stages for a fir tree–seeds, sprouting, seedling, full grown, pine cone–and mounted them on construction paper.  The girls and I went through each card talking about what a tree was doing, really focusing on seeds and pine cones.  The second day we actually pretended to be trees, starting curled up in a ball as a seed and then growing big and tall.  It was a little silly but the girls thought it was funny.

Tree Cycle Pictures #1                       Tree Cycle Pictures #2

Pine Cone Christmas Trees



Supplies: Pine cones, green paint, pom pom balls, glitter, glue

We also made our own little Christmas trees out of pine cones (I remember doing this myself when I was little).  First the girls painted the pine cones green, next sprinkled them with glitter, and then glued pom poms on as ornaments.

As we live in the desert, pine cones are hard to come by.  I just picked some up at Michael’s.  They are the scented ones but that just added some extra Christmas cheer to the house. 

Other Activities

When starting our activities we talked about where Christmas trees first started, looking at Germany on the map.  If you don’t have a globe or map, you can find great maps here. We also colored sheets on T is for Tree and practiced the letter T using some of the worksheets found here.  And we sang the song “Oh Christmas Tree.”  To round off our theme, we cut our peanut butter sandwiches in the shape of a Christmas tree with a cookie cutter.

Finally, we were ready to decorate the tree!

 

Christmas Colors Felt Board Story

I came up with this felt board activity based on the classic Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin, Jr.  It follows the same rhythm but uses colors and images from the holiday season.

Skills: Color recognition, language development
Prep: Medium (drawing/decorating the pieces did take some time, but if you use solid pieces of felt it goes much quicker)

 

White Snowman, White Snowman, what do you see?
I see a green tree looking at me.

Green Tree, Green Tree, what do you see?
I see a red hat looking at me.

Red Hat, Red Hat, what do you see?
I see a blue present looking at me.

Blue Present, Blue Present, what do you see?
I see a yellow star looking at me.

Yellow Star, Yellow Star, what do you see?
I see a purple stocking looking at me.

Purple Stocking, Purple Stocking, what do you see?
I see a brown reindeer looking at me.

Brown Reindeer, Brown Reindeer, what do you see?
I see an orange light looking at me.

Orange Light, Orange Light, what do you see?
I see _(Child’s Name)_ looking at me.

_(Child’s Name)_, _(Child’s Name)_, what do you see?
I see a white snowman, a green tree, a red hat, a blue present, a yellow star, a purple stocking, a brown reindeer, and an orange light looking at me.

Like most of our felt board activities, the first time we did this, I recited the poem and placed the pieces on the board.  When we went through it a second time, I tried to get the girls to say it with me as we pulled out pieces and put them on the board.

Ed drew the images for me, which I have included below.  You can cut silhouettes from colored felt or draw/trace images on  pellon to color in with oil pastel crayons.

Tree and Reindeer Images
Snowman and Stocking Images
Present and Hat Images
Star and Light Images

 

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