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Last night we sprinkled the last few panko flakes out of the can, a moment I had been waiting for ever since I had seen a lesson for an oatmeal container planetarium. As my art charge for the day was significantly younger (2), I revised the lesson to be more little-kid friendly than the original. R. was a little young for understanding the more scientific part of what we were doing, but he loved playing with the flashlight in the dark room and seeing the different patterns it made on the wall. It’s got me thinking about other light-based projects for young kids, and I’ve included a couple of alternate activities based on this one at the end of the lesson plan. --------------------------- Indoor Star Gazer *freely repost, but attribute to Doodles (* Time: 30-1 minutes depending on how involved the kids are in the constellation drawings. Then, plenty of time for playing with it in a dark room. Materials: a round canister (we used a Panko container),... read more

It’s been a week full of toddler art–which is great, because it means the kids and I get to wallow in our materials and get paint in our hair, our toes, and sometimes…our mouths (non-toxic!). This project was great, because not only did it give a finished project that J. could play and learn from after our session, but the making was extremely tactile. Lots of paint splashing and fascinated puddle watching. There were some problems and things I would do differently (listed in detail below), but overall, success. ---------------------------- Watercolor Relief Alphabet Cards *freely repost, but attribute to Doodles (* Time: 1.5 hours (if you do multiple paint coats, less if you only do one) Materials: two sheets of 15×20? nice watercolor paper folded into 4, then divided into 4 (so you have four rows of four), watered down tempera paint, sponges and containers, blow-dryer Begin with two sheets of watercolor paper that are folded into four rows... read more

Today I was watching not one but two 2 year olds, so I was looking for something that would occupy them with minimal mess, as well as give us something fun to do post-project. It was a lovely day, with just the slightest bit of wind…so I thought of making a version of Busy Bee’s parachute people. Kids this age love gluing things, and my version of the project had the added benefit of helping them learn body-parts. If you take the parachute people outside, the plastic bags pick up the air currents and the people come gently floating down to squeals of toddler delight. --------------------------- Parachute People *freely repost, but attribute to Doodles (* Time: about 30 minutes, less or more depending on how involved the kids are in the preparations. Materials: glue stick, cut out body parts from magazines (kids can help you with this, too, depending on age and temperament),basic paper figure, stapler, plastic bag Have a paper figure cut... read more

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