Make your own flubber

What to do on a cold snowy day at home indoors? This flubber recipe is easy to make and gives little ones a whole new texture to play with.



2 tsp Borax (found in stores by laundry soap)

2 cups white glue

food coloring (optional)


1. Mix together 1 cup of water and 2 cups of glue. Add a few drops of food coloring.


2. In a separate bowl, dissolve 2 tablespoons of Borax into 1/4 cup of water.

3. Stir the Borax mixture into the glue mixture. The glue will clump up and form a mass. Take it out and knead it on a flat surface. There will be some liquid left over in the bowl.


The flubber is like no other play dough- it’s bouncy but not stretchy, it breaks in straight lines, and it oozes together. It’s really fun to experiment with!

Store it in a ziplock to keep it soft.


Make your own play dough… and monsters!

IMG_3518We made some play dough (no cooking required) using simple kitchen ingredients. It comes out really soft and great for making into monsters!

Get the recipe and project ideas from my post on The Good Weekly.

Sleep Sheep: Help your child stay in bed

After years of great sleeping, my four year old daughter started getting out of bed at night. Sometimes for a glass of water, sometimes to have her blankets fixed, sometimes because she noticed a week old paper cut was still there. I needed to get her back on track, so I came up with this project. So far, it has been about two weeks and she has not gotten out of bed ONCE. I am thankful we are all getting more restful sleep.



medium styrofoam ball

small styrofoam ball

black pipe cleaners cut or folded to size

black yarn

googly eyes

red pipe cleaner (small piece)

hot glue and hot glue gun

white glue

cotton balls


Poke four holes in the larger styrofoam ball with scissors. Insert the pipe cleaners to make the sheep’s legs.



Wrap the small Styrofoam ball with black yarn until it is all covered. I thought this would be fun for my daughter to do, but it actually took more fine motor coordination then I thought and I ended up finishing it for her.



Hot glue the head and face together.


Every night that she stays in bed all night, she gets to add a cotton ball to her sheep’s body. No big prize at the end. Simply gluing cotton balls is reward enough.


Painting projects for kids: Tips for success

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The process of painting is far more important to early childhood artists than the end product. They love to watch the paint blend and squish on the paper, the water turn colors as they wash their brushes, and feel the bristles of the paintbrush scratch against the surface of the paper. Here are a few ideas for  encouraging your child to create something he or she can be proud to hang on your refrigerator gallery, while still being true to their own sensory interaction with the process.

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  • Offer black and brown paint separately from other colors. Starting with black and letting it dry completely will give your child a chance to explore with many colors without worrying about the dark colors taking over. Plus, it ensures some great contrast in their work.
  • Keep warm colors (red, orange, and yellow) and cool colors (blue, green, and purple) separate. Use two different paper plates and two different brushes. This way, he or she is less likely to have a monotone brown painting.

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  • Offer a variety of surfaces to paint on. Teach them they don’t always need to start with a white piece of paper. Paintings can be made on cereal boxes, junk mail, newspaper, construction paper, wrapping paper, cardboard, fabric, or old drawings.

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  • Play with scale- give them large brushes or paper and then switch them to a tiny brush to add details.
  • Use nice paint- kids don’t need to be given finger paint exclusively (the colors are not very saturated). Some of my favorite paints are Jazz Gloss Tempera, Sargent Metallic and Washable Glitter Tempera, and Premium Grade Tempera. Check your local art supply store for higher quality washable options.


  • Encourage your child to revisit paintings once they are dry to add more details, polka dots, or outlines. Using drawing materials such as markers, chalk pastels, or cray-pas can add another element to their composition.
  • Rotate their paper while they are working to give a fresh perspective.


  • Change their water often to keep the water from muddying the colors.  Fill a sturdy cup only halfway to have less to clean when it spills. Offer a paper towel for them to wipe their brush on in between colors.
  • Resist the urge to always ask them what they are painting. Most of the time, young artists don’t know what they are creating until they see the final product. They are engaged in the process and are not as concerned with “planning” as older children might be.
  • Know when to tell them it’s over. Some children will have such a great time while painting, they never want it to end and will overwork a beautiful piece. Bring a new piece of paper so the fun doesn’t have to stop when the painting is finished. 



Refrigerator “Marble” Run

Check out my post on The Good Weekly blog. Make your own refrigerator “marble” run!!


Puffy Paint- Guest post

My friend Gabriela Almonte did this fun activity with her preschool age daughter and her friend. I can’t wait to try it out with my own preschool crew!


This was a fun rainy day activity for my daughter and her friend to do on their play-date. Puffy paint is super simple to make and the kids can create a lot of great effects.My daughter loved it because she said it was like making pancakes. We made a pretty large batch for the kids and they each got to make about three or four paintings. For the canvases, we used scrap pieces of cardstock.


Puffy Paint Recipe

½ cup of self-rising flour

2 Tbsp of salt

¾ cup of water

Food coloring

Mix the flour, salt, and water in one bowl. Mix well and make sure there are no lumps. If the mixture is too thick add a little more water it should be the consistency of pancake batter. Divide the paint into separate containers. Pour one or two drops of food coloring into each container and mix well. This is a good opportunity to let the kids experiment with mixing colors.


 Once the paintings are completed place in the microwave for a few seconds and the paint will rise. The thicker the paint the longer it will take to “cook”. This could also start a good conversation on how and why the paint rose.


Summer Bucket List Journals


To keep a record of our Summer Bucket List, my daughter made a journal. I love that we will have a record of all the fun things we did this summer. Keeping a journal is a great activity for kids over the summer to keep them thinking about writing and narrative telling.

I bought a notebook at the craft store that had lines and a space for a picture on each page. Together, we reviewed pictures from each activity. (I tried to do it shortly afterword so her memory was fresh, but sometimes life got busy and we had to play catch-up!) She drew a picture and told me what her favorite part of each activity was.

I did not have her write on the left-hand side of each page because I plan on adding some photos to her entries once we are all finished.

Summer went by too fast!


Charlotte’s Web Mixed Media Artwork

Inspired by the book Charlotte’s Web, we did a project about the two best friends, Wilbur and Charlotte. My daughter loves any excuse to bust out the glitter, so she had a fun time with this project.


First, she “drew” the spider’s web with glue. After some initial frustration, I opened up a new glue so her small hands had an easier time squeezing.


She sprinkled glitter around and shook it to cover all the glue. We worked on top of a large sheet of easel paper to catch the extra glitter.


Using a small blob of Model Magic clay, she colored with a black marker and kneaded it to make a gray color. This was Charlotte’s body.


I gave her some Wiki stix cut in half to poke into the clay and make legs for her spider. Wiki Stix are strings coated with wax, so they can be bent to look like the spider is creeping in the web. She glued her spider and a small egg sac into her web.


The final touch was using oil pastels to add Wilbur the pig and the sun. What farm picture would be complete without a sun!!??


Keeping a book journal


I have the memory of a pet goldfish. I’ve learned to cope with my deficiency through excellent bookeeping- scrapbooks, journals, and lots of post-it notes! About 8 years ago, I started keeping a book journal to remember titles, authors, and my personal reactions to books I have read. It has been a HUGELY satisfying experience to be able to retain what I enjoyed about each book,  to look back at some of my favorite authors when I need a suggestion for a new book,  and know exactly WHEN I read each book. I write my review/response and also keep a list of titles/authors at the back for reference.


After reading my daughter her first chapter book aloud, Charlotte’s Web by E.B Webb, I decided it would be fun to start a journal with her so she could have a record of books she has read from an early age. I bought her a journal just like the one I have, and she LOVED it. I dictated her summery of the book and what her favorite part was, and she did a drawing to go with it. I know she won’t record EVERY book she ever reads, but hopefully she’ll include the important ones!


It’s so exciting to see her imagination come alive when she falls in love with a good book. I have so many from my childhood I can’t wait to revisit with her. Next up, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!

“I can do it by myself!” Facepainting


Who needs a professional face painter? My preschool students had a great time in front of the mirror with face paints. They loved transforming their own face with bright colors. It’s a great exercise in fine motor control as well!


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