Strengthen Your Family Through Biblical Homeschooling

Tag: crafts

Summer is a great time to hang out outside with your friends and family. But on those days where you are stuck inside, summer boredom can sometimes set in. Here is a list of a few boredom busters for you and your children.

Painting Rocks Using Crayons

Have your kiddies head outdoors and find as many smooth rocks as they can. Have them color the rocks all over with as many creative designs as they can think of. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and preheat oven (while kids are coloring) to 225 degrees and place rocks all over a baking sheet for about 3 minutes. The results are really neat and worth trying. The wax melts but doesn’t come off if you let them cool completely. I found this fun boredom buster over at The Country Cottage Chic.

Make Homemade Gak

This boredom buster is great for those gloomy rainy days or those days when the heat of the day is just too much for you to want to be outside in it.

Have you ever made Gak? It’s a ton of fun and kids will get a kick out of it. You can even make a variety of colors for a more stimulating experience. Ingredients are easy to come by. We found a great recipe on Lil Luna All you need is:

*large mixing bowl
*Two bottles of Elmer’s Glue
*1 Tsp. of Borax
*Water
*Plastic Cup
*Food Coloring

Check out Lil Luna for instructions and more ideas.

Let’s Go Geocaching!

If you and your family are on a strict budget but want to find fun and free activities to do with your family, have you ever tried geocaching? This one I have never done but would love to give a try. My brother in law and his family do it often. It sounds pretty intriguing. What exactly is geocaching? It’s basically like a treasure hunt and a popular outdoor recreational activity. Here is an accurate description as by Wikipedia:

“A typical cache is a small waterproof container containing a logbook (with a pen or pencil). The geocacher enters the date they found it and signs it with their established code name. After signing the log, the cache must be placed back exactly where the person found it. Larger containers such as plastic storage containers (Tupperware or similar) or ammunition boxes can also contain items for trading, usually toys or trinkets of little financial value, although sometimes they are sentimental. Geocaching shares many aspects with benchmarking, trigpointing, orienteering, treasure hunting, letterboxing, and waymarking.” ~Wikipedia

Marshmallow Shooters

This looks like a boredom buster blast! Basically, all you will need for this fun activity are cake pop container, balloons, mini marshmallows, and scissors. Now, what do you do? Cut the bottom part of your plastic cup, tie a knot at the end of a balloon….want more details? Visit Coffee Cups and Crayons for more details.

 

We’d love to hear from you! What fun things is YOUR family doing this summer to do away with any summer boredom? Leave a comment below, and

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Ever since I was younger, I have loved the Fourth of July. It is one of the only times in the year where fireworks are blazing and hotdogs are eaten in dozens (and I absolutely LOVE hot dogs!) I am also fascinated by fun facts, so I was particularly excited when I learned all of this about the special day that we celebrate as the birthday of America. How many of these fun facts did you already know? Perhaps your children can impress all your relatives with their new-found facts when you’re all together celebrating this July 4th!

8 Fun Fourth of July facts

  1. The Declaration of Independence was not fully signed until August 2nd. 
  2. Massachusetts was the first state to recognize Independence Day. (Good job Massachusetts.) 
  3. Other Countries also celebrate July 4th. Including England, Denmark, Portugal, and Sweden. 
  4. We eat about 150 million hotdogs on the 4th of July. 
  5. Independence day was not recognized as a national holiday until 1870. 
  6. 3 US Presidents have died on July 4th. (John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and James Monroe,)
  7. Fireworks have been used to celebrate our independence basically since the beginning. 
  8. Americans spend $167.5 million on watermelon each year on July 4th. 

How does your family celebrate the Independence Day? Here are 10 creative ways to make it fun– and to give you something to work on all week!

10 Creative And Fun Fourth of July Ideas

  1. Easy eraser stamp t-shirt by Cutesy Crafts. 
  2. Mess-Free Star Painting by Toddler Approved.
  3. How cute is this Uncle Sam mask by Fantastic Fun and Learning? 
  4. Firework ring also by Fantastic Fun and Learning.
  5. Bald Eagle crafts by Homeschool Preschool. 
  6. Red, Rice, and Blue Candle by Today’s Creative Life. 
  7. Jello Firecrackers by Kraft.
  8. Edible Firecrackers by Surviving a Teachers Salary.  
  9. July 4th Smores dip by Delish.
  10. Dish Brush Fireworks by Crafty Morning.

Also, be sure to check out Six Activity Ideas for Fun Fourth of July Family Celebration!

Comment below if you made any of these! Or, better yet, share your pictures on Instagram or Facebook and tag @TeachDiligently or use the #TTDJuly4. I can’t wait to see your creativity in action!

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christmas placemat

Advent Christmas Season

With Christmas quickly approaching and our to-do list ever growing; we may wonder how to keep the kids busy and focused in the right direction. One of my favorite holiday projects has been to make placemats for the Advent Christmas season with an easy cut and paste method that helps to keep those important reasons for the holiday season in clear view.

How to Make Placemats

homeschool craft project

We save Christmas cards sent to us each year so we have an abundance lying around and its great way to up-cycle them. Then we trim and glue them in collage fashion on large 11 x 14 inch construction paper. There may be a special Christmas card sent from cousins overseas last year or ones from grandparents and close friends.

I start by clipping the corners of the construction paper then place it on top of holiday wrapping paper and cut around it. Now I trim the wrapping paper one inch all around and glue it in the middle.

One year we wrote Happy Birthday Jesus on holiday stationary to add in! I even added Language Arts by having the children write a sensory poem to glue in the middle then add all the Christmas cards around it.

  • Christmas sounds like…       (have your child fill in the blank) 
  • Christmas looks like…
  • Christmas smells like…
  • Christmas tastes like…
  • Christmas feels like…

We retell the Nativity Story by using those types of Christmas cards and gluing them onto the paper. Some cards even have the names of Jesus on them written in beautiful script: Prince of Peace, Immanuel, Messiah. We cut those out to use as embellishments. The dollar store is a great place to find inexpensive cards if you don’t have any to use or throw a Trade Old Christmas Card’s Party. When finished, laminate the placemats inexpensively at the local teacher’s store or Office Max. Little ones love to sit and eat all through the season on these festive placemats! They can recount the nativity story scene by scene and keep the most important things in front of them.

For more crafts visit my blog Homeschooling for Jesus.

New Millennium Girl Books Author-homeschool writing books

 

Jan May is author of New Millennium Girl Books: Christian mid-grade novels for girls and interactive creative writing books that hook even the reluctant writers! She is also a fifteen year homeschool veteran and creative writing teacher. Jan enjoys igniting creativity in children and believes that given the right tools and encouragement, any child can write and love it!

 

 

This article was originally published on our Homeschool Launch Blog.

 

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More Blessed to Give

Teach Them Diligently 365 members, listen to:

“More Blessed to Give”

The Christmas season is a wonderful time of year to instill in your children the joy of giving. 

How are you instilling the joy of giving in your kids? 

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Sign up for a free 7 day trial and explore the extensive content!

 

 

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boy with paint on hands

Simple Thanksgiving crafts for preschoolers foster celebration and motor skills. Little guys are highly visual and love hands-on activities. Don’t be shy about using this approach.

Here are a few ideas to try with your preschooler. Remember, sometimes it’s okay to be messy. Messy is fun! It’s the process, not the product, that’s important.

Paper Turkeys

Begin with this easy paper turkey. Here are the materials you will need:

  • Multi-colored feathers (can be found at any craft and hobby shop)
  • Brown, orange, red, and white construction paper
  • Black marker or black Sharpie
  • Scissors
  • Glue

If you know your child gets frustrated with the cutting process, pre-cut the pieces. Have the parts ready to assemble onto the little turkey bodies. Be sure to pre-cut the eyes, wattle, and beak. The turkey body can take any shape you wish, including the one in the picture above.

Have your preschooler glue on their turkey parts and presto – a cute paper turkey. If you make one in advance for them to see, remind them not to worry about making their turkey look exactly the same. Their effort, and the fun they have while creating, matter more than the appearance of the final product.

Make the experience  more exiting for older pre-K’s and elementary ages. Foster fine motor skills when you let them trace the eyes, wattle, and beak. Allow them to cut out the shapes. Hint: the less fine motor control a child has, the larger the tracing templates need to be.

It’s okay if they don’t turn out perfectly. These imperfect first attempts will provide fond memories for years to come if you laminate the final products.

Handprint Turkeys

This is a fun but messier craft activity. Your preschooler will get a kick out of this one. You may experience a few giggles during the process. You will need:

  • Construction paper (red, brown, or yellow)
  • Fall color paints: red, yellow, orange, and brown
  • Googly Eyes
  • Glue
  • Paintbrushes

I like to get a paintbrush for each color that I will be painting on their hands. It may also be a good idea to have a small basin of soapy water on the table for quick hand clean ups when you are done.

Use brown paint to cover the entire underside of the palm and create the turkey body. Then, paint each finger a different color. This process may tickle and cause giggles and squeals. Grab a video camera to catch some of the laughter to playback next year for more giggles.

After the hand is ready to print, press down onto your desired construction paper color and press firmly. Dip those little hands in the basin of water you put out ahead of time to save yourself extra clean up!

After the turkey has dried, add on googly eyes and write what your child is thankful for in each feather. Laminate these projects for adorable Thanksgiving place mats. If you want more than one hand on the construction paper, you can paint both hands.

Sugar Cornucopia

This has been a definite hit with my preschoolers in the past. This fun to put together, yummy treat makes a great Thanksgiving Day table favor.

Gather your  cornucopia supplies:

  • Sugar Cones
  • White Frosting (edible glue)
  • Fruit shaped fruit snacks, Runts Candy, or fruit shaped cereal
  • Craft Stick

Place the white frosting in a small plastic bowl and use the craft stick to spread the white frosting inside of the sugar cone. After that has been completed, stick on the fruit shaped items and let set until frosting has hardened. This is a quick little edible craft. The results are awesome!

Egg Pilgrims

In addition to a few hard-boiled eggs, you will need these supplies:

  • Googly Eyes
  • Black Construction Paper (Boy Pilgrim)
  • Coffee Filters (Bonnets for Girl Pilgrims)
  • Glue
  • Sharpie Marker
  • Egg Carton
  • Yarn

After the eggs have been boiled and cooled, stick into individual egg carton holders. You can cut these apart or choose to leave them whole. Cut out little pilgrim hats from construction paper. Black top hats for boys and little bonnets out of coffee filters for girls. Glue on desired color yarn for hair. Then, glue on hats. Attach the googly eyes and let dry. Draw on the nose and mouth with a Sharpie marker.  You will have cute little egg pilgrims to decorate your table.

 

For more simple Thanksgiving crafts for preschoolers, visit http://www.123homeschool4me.com/2014/08/200-fall-crafts-kids-activities.html

This article was originally published on our Homeschool Launch Blog.

 

To learn even more helpful homeschooling tools, click here to sign up for the newsletter.

 

Do you want more fun articles on a wide range of topics like discipleship, academics, family, encouragement and general homeschooling?  Just click here to search the vast blog library!

 

 

A Hands On Approach To Educating Your Preschoolers

Teach Them Diligently 365 members, listen to:

“A Hands On Approach To Educating Your Preschoolers”

During this video session we will define the components of a quality preschool education, identify some of the important skills preschoolers need to learn, and learn how to create lessons and activities using a thematic hands on approach and look at lesson examples.

Become a member of Teach Them Diligently 365 for access to more!

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Why Art?

Art is an important part of education. It encourages creativity and causes minds to flourish. Don’t take middle school art education lightly. You may end up having a your own Picasso-like masterpiece hanging in your living room one day.

Art projects catering to your middle schooler offer a way to rest minds from ‘book learning’ when the year has grown tedious! Field trips are a great way to encourage art creativity, so think in terms of combining the two when you can.

Art Project Ideas

  1. Tile Murals – Non-Glassy Ceramic tiles are great for this project. You will need acrylic paint or oil paint with brushes, silicone glue/dispenser gun, and an empty wall space. You can choose a theme for them to design like something from history, or allow them to just do whatever comes to their mind. When dry, display!
  2. Coffee Filter Booklet- This is a fun and unique art project. Kinderart explains it the best with a sample picture. Visit http://kinderart.com/across/coffee.shtml for full details.
  3. Cave Paintings – You will need small bags, an old spoon, old bowls, vegetable shortening, old toothbrushes, mural paper, masking tape, and dirt. This is a prehistoric idea. Again, visit http://kinderart.com/arthistory/cavepainting.shtml for full details.
  4. Live Paintings – In this research project, students compile information on different paintings throughout history. Students then write an essay comparing the paintings they have found. Use an art museum field trip as research!
  5. Craft Stick Trees – Gather 1 large craft stick, 7 small craft sticks, brown paint, as well as red, orange, and green felt. A glue gun is the best tool to make the tree stick together. Cut out little leaf shapes from each color. Paint all of the craft sticks brown. Glue all of the smaller craft sticks onto the large stick to resemble branches. When that dries, add all of the little leaves. When dry, you have the perfect little tree.

What else?

Other middle school art project ideas can range from dinosaur eggs and friendship pins to paper quilling and pencil holders. There are so many creative ideas out there. Pinterest is a great online tool to search for all things middle school art.

Tell us about your most successful art ideas in the comments below? Or, tell us about your biggest challenge/art fail so others can help you find a fix or suggest a different approach?

This article was originally published on our Homeschool Launch Blog.

 

For more on homeschooling and art read, “Why Creating a Masterpiece Works“.

And you can sign up for the newsletter to receive more great articles!

 

Rethink Home Education

To further your reading, we have a special ebook that we would like to send to you. It’s entitled “RETHINK EDUCATION, Turning Scary Questions About Home Education Into Exciting Possibilities.” It was written after countless conversations with moms who are either considering homeschooling or struggling with doubt. My heart in writing it is to offer hopeful answers to some of the questions moms tend to be asking… and you might be surprised at which ones didn’t make the list. I would love for it to become a resource you could share with your friends who are considering home education, or who are wondering if they’ll keep going. So, grab your copy today! – Leslie Nunnery

 

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Now that fall is in full swing, it’s a fun time to explore nature and complete fun fall activities and crafts. Since preschoolers thrive on their senses, sensory play and activities will help enrich their development.

Sensory Projects

Pumpkin Spice Play Dough– Preschoolers love play dough. Squishing hands through the soft texture is very stimulating, plus it encourages creativity. Take it up a notch by making it with a fun fall scent like pumpkin.

Here are the ingredients:

1 cup water

2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice

1 cup flour

1 tsp Cream of Tartar

1/4 cup salt

1 tsp vegetable oil

Food coloring (optional)

Add an orange color to the play dough to revolve around the pumpkin theme.

Harvest Sensory Bin – Grab any size bin you desire and fill it with nature. Wood chips, shells, acorns, corn husks, pine cones, hay, etc. are just a few of the many items you can use to fill the bins. Put toy cars and tractors into the harvest bin and watch your preschooler become a little farmer.

Painting Pine Cones – Preschoolers and painting go hand in hand. Go outside and hunt for pine cones, bring inside, and paint with spice paints. Add your favorite fall spices to autumn paint colors. The pine cones will display beautiful autumn colors with fall scents.

Sweet Potato Goop – Many preschoolers like to get all gooey and sticky. Getting messy is just plain fun sometimes. Try this fun idea for sweet potato goop.

DSC_3275

Harvest Puffy Finger Paint – When it comes to preschoolers and finger painting, you can’t go wrong. Make it more exciting with turning simple paint into puffy paint. Just mix equal parts red, orange, yellow and brown food coloring with Elmer’s glue and shaving cream. After it dries, the texture is puffy. It’s so much fun.

Harvest Discovery Bottles – These are so much fun to make and play with. Fill a plastic bottle with mini leaves, mini pumpkins, etc. To see more, click image.

 

Let your creativity flow and watch your child’s creativity flourish as you do. Try new things, even messy ones, and encourage your child’s willingness to do the same.

What is your child’s favorite activity? We’d love to see your ideas for fall fun. Share a link to an activity you discovered in the comments below.

This article was originally published on our Homeschool Launch Blog.

 

 

Here is a link to sign up for our Teach Them Diligently newsletter to receive more great articles!

You may also find many more articles on the topic of Family under blogs.

 

Rethink Home Education

To further your reading, we have a special ebook that we would like to send to you. It’s entitled “RETHINK EDUCATION, Turning Scary Questions About Home Education Into Exciting Possibilities.” It was written after countless conversations with moms who are either considering homeschooling or struggling with doubt. My heart in writing it is to offer hopeful answers to some of the questions moms tend to be asking… and you might be surprised at which ones didn’t make the list. I would love for it to become a resource you could share with your friends who are considering home education, or who are wondering if they’ll keep going. So, grab your copy today! – Leslie Nunnery

 

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Homeschooling Parents

About David and Leslie Nunnery

Leslie Nunnery and her husband David founded Teach Them Diligently, the nation’s premier source for gospel-centered homeschool events. With seven years of homeschooling experience from preschool-high school and a passion to encourage and equip homeschool families, this mom of 4 shares her know-how and insights weekly through Teach Them Diligently media and on TeachThemDiligently365.com.

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