Thursday, June 28, 2012

Craft Camp - Planes, Trains & Automobiles!

When the kids came today they got to free play on the car mat. I had a bucket with all sorts of planes, trains, and automobiles. (I forgot to get a picture.) They loved it so after they were done painting their cars, they played on the mat again!

Time to paint! Each kid got to choose 2 vehicles to paint. They could paint it however they wanted and they turned out so colorful! Make sure you put your apron on so that you don't get paint on your shirt.

Some were quicker than others and some were more meticulous than others.

Alphabeep: A Zipping, Zooming ABC

When everyone was finished painting, we read "Alphabeep" by Debora Pearson.
This is "A Zipping Zooming ABC" book. I love this book and so do the kids. On the inside covers, there is a whole bunch of common street signs. (See photo below)

It was so fun to discuss what each sigh means. Some of the kids knew what the signs meant especially the more common ones. It was fun to hear them say "I have seen that sign before!"

For snack we each got 4 "wheels" a.k.a. Ritz crackers.

After snack, we went outside to play "Red Light, Green Light"

On the first round all the kids were airplanes.

Then we were trains.

On the next couple rounds, they each got to choose a different vehicle. Some were buses, some were trucks and some were boats.

Red Light, Green Light!
Then we played the Parking Lot game from here: This was a really fun game and the kids loved it!

This is what the tables looked like when we were all finished painting.

Looks like fun! Right?

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Craft Camp - Cats and Dogs!

Today's craft camp was lots of fun and lots of work for me. I had a lot of preparation for this one but I think the kids had a lot of fun. I found the idea and patterns here: There is a bunch of animals to choose from (frog, lamb, pig, dog, cat, bunny, turtle, and a panda.)

We started the day by gluing all the felt pieces to the bag with Elmers glue and a q-tip. This is a great way for kids to use glue and not make a mess. (I did end up hot gluing some of the pieces on because there was not quite enough time in the 2 hours for the Elmer's glue to dry.)
While we waited for the glue to dry we played with the magnet pages that I found here: The kids love doing this with all the colorful rocks and jewels.

After the glue dried a little we sewed around the edges with a plastic canvas needle and yarn. I had to pre-poke holes in the felt for the kids so that they could sew it.

After we sewed the edges and finished the bags, we had story time and snack time. For the books this week, I chose If you give a cat a cupcake and If you give a dog a donut both by Laura Numeroff.

Product Details Product Details

I LOVE these books! There are several of them and they are so cute. They are great for cause and effect. The kids love them too and they think they are so funny.

For snack we enjoyed some dog bone shaped graham crackers. The kids really loved this!

We played some other games that I found here:
The kids favorite ones were "How many Frisbees can the dog catch?" and "Doggie, Doggie, Where's your Bone?"

I love how they all turned out so different.

My almost 7 year old son did not want a cat so I told him we could try to turn his into a lion. I think it turned out pretty good.

My 2.5 year old daughter is in love with the color pink, so we made her a cute little pink puppy. She carries this everywhere putting all sorts of fun things inside. She even sleeps with it sometimes!

He is so proud of his creation!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Craft Camp - Butterflies!

Last week we learned all about caterpillars so I thought it was only appropriate to learn about butterflies this week. The kids were able to paint their own pot whichever color they wanted.

It is very important to wear your apron when you are painting so as not to get paint on your clothes! (It might also be good to just wear clothing that would be okay to get paint on it so that if you happen to make a mess, it won't matter!)

After we painted the pots, we played several games so that the pots could dry. The first thing we did was play with pattern blocks. We had a butterfly, a caterpillar, and a dragonfly. The kids had a blast with these blocks. We got all our patterns from here:

After plenty of time with the pattern blocks, we read our story. This week's book was "From Caterpillar to Butterfly" by Deborah Heiligman. It is a cute little book about a classroom of children that has a caterpillar in a jar. They watch the caterpillar day by day as it changes into a butterfly.

Then we went outside to pretend that we were butterflies. We started out as eggs...

and then we hatched and became caterpillars crawling all over the grass and eating all the green!

We couldn't stop there! We HAD to know exactly what it feels like to hang upside down just like when the caterpillar is getting ready to make its chrysalis. (This just might have been the most favorite part of the whole day!!)

Then we practiced using our wings to "fly" all over the backyard.

We had pretzels for snack (because they look like butterflies!) Then we finished up our butterflies by gluing a black Styrofoam ball to the top with google eyes and pipe cleaner antenna. We also included some pipe cleaner arms (or legs), some rhinestone jewels to the bottom, and don't forget the sparkly foam wings!

Didn't they turn out so cute and colorful!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Craft Camp-Caterpillars!

We kicked off Craft Camp this year with an adorable caterpillar made out of foam circles, wooden dowels, beads and some wire. When the kids first got here, they were shown how to get started by putting a foam circle on the dowel and then a bead. They repeated this until it was time to put the head on. After putting the head on they poked the wire antenna in the top of the head. (We got this cute caterpillar idea from I changed a few things on it but for the most part we followed the directions from here. I also found that because I am working with this many kids at the same time it is so much easier to have little kits prepared for each kid so that they get the right supplies.

When each kid finished their caterpillar they were able to sit on the floor and do some magnet pages while they waited for everyone to finish. I got the magnet pages from here and from here I use the little rocks you get in the flower/craft section. They fit perfectly in the circles.

When all the kids finished their caterpillars, we put the magnet pages away and sat in a circle to read "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" by Eric Carle. This is a great book that teaches about caterpillars, numbers, counting, and days of the week. You can buy a copy from (

We then did a retell of the story using a caterpillar that I bought at the dollar store and some felt foods that I made. I just made one of each fruit and I had the kids tell me how many of each fruit the caterpillar ate. I also made a felt cocoon (a brown "bag") for the caterpillar. Then he changed into a butterfly so we attached some felt wings to his body.

We needed to get outside and get some energy out so we formed a circle on the grass and played "Caterpillar, Caterpillar, Butterfly" (exactly the same as Duck, Duck, Goose) The kids really liked how they had to "fly" when it was their turn to be the butterfly. When everyone had had a turn, we went inside and had a snack.

We then played a counting game with this printable. It comes from this site: I got the large, shiny pom-poms from Walmart in the craft section.

We then did a retell of the story with some printables I found here:

We had time for just one more game so we played the Caterpillar Dice Game I found here:

Here is my Alex with his finished caterpillar. I had 12 kids participate and I think they had fun. I know I did!