Valentine Activity for Toddlers | Fine Motor Skill Practice

Valentine Decorations

Decorating for Valentines Day is usually brief, but I like to do it anyway. We have a few banners up around the house and this one might be my favorite. Some of the banners I use year after year like this Valentine bunting from forever ago.

Valentine Bunting

Other decorations I have had the kids help me make. This Valentine activity was dual purpose. Not only was it a great fine motor skill activity for Chickadee and Sprout, it also added a little LOVE to our breakfast nook! It was really quite simple.

All you will need is some colored paper, toddler scissors, a pen, hole punch and string.

First I cut each piece of paper into 1/4ths. Then I folded the 1/4th in half and drew half a heart starting and ending on the fold. 

how to cut folded heart

Chickadee was my first helper. She is 4 and cutting with scissors is great find motor skill practice for her. So she cut out all of the hearts. 

toddler scissor practice

After she cut the hearts out, Sprout (2.5 years old) went to town with the hole punch. A hold punch is so much fun for kids and really great for strengthening their hand muscles. 

Fine Motor Skill Practice

Last, I taped them onto string and hung them up in the breakfast nook. The Happy Valentines Bunting in the middle is from Target’s dollar section. It was $3 and is glittery so Chickadee especially loves it. However, you could easily make that yourself too. 

Valentine Toddler Activity

Just like the number sense activity I posted last week, this is a great activity for toddlers of many different ages. You could also make a template for your older child and they could trace the heart outline before cutting. 

So, do you decorate for Valentine’s Day? We will probably leave the hearts up for all of February and then change things our to Spring and Easter once March arrives. I sure hope March brings the sun and a little warmer temperatures! 

Valentine Number Sense Activity

Valentine_Number_Sense_Activity

Valentine’s is in full swing over here! We have decorated, crafted, played and eaten our fair share of Valentine themed everything, and we still have a week to go. I know people say it gets all “Hallmarky” but you won’t find me pouting on folks wanting to celebrate LOVE. Let’s do it every day! And let’s do it in February! And let’s do it on the 14th! Spread the LOVE. 

The afternoons are the hardest time of day for me. As a stay at home mom it seems the three-ish hours from the end of nap time until when dad comes home are the longest. Especially, when it is cold and or raining. I try to think ahead and have some type of activity to do with the big kids and this always helps pass the time. Seeing as we are doing all things hearts, the other day I threw together a fun heart and number sense activity. And you can too!

Valentine_Number_Sense_Game

All you need is some paper, a marker, dice & stickers. I changed things up a little bit between my four and two year old, but the game was played the same. 

For my two year old I drew a bunch of hearts and wrote numbers 1 – 6 inside them. I wanted him to work on number sense, both recognizing digits and being able to do one – to – one correspondence counting the dots on the dice. 

For my four year old, we are working on reading. So, inside her hearts I wrote number words 1 – 6. I wanted her to work on reading the number words as well as recognizing the number of dots on the dice without having to count the dots. 

Valentines_Math_Game

Beginning_Reading_Valentines

 

Here are what their papers looked like before we started.

Then they took turns rolling the dice and placing stickers on their paper, covering up the number digit or word they rolled. I thought this activity might be one and done, but they both asked to play again. Chickadee immediately and Sprout after he played trains for a little while! I love when activities can be fun for both of them and challenge them at their current ability levels! You could also extend this having your older kids roll two dice and adding them together. The numbers on the hearts could then be numbers 2 – 12!

Valentine_Math_Toddler

DIY Fluffy Monster Slime (that isn’t sticky)

DIY Fluffy Monster Slime

How excited are you that is is OCTOBER?!!?! I would argue that it is one of the best months of the year, especially if that cool fall air has kicked in. Unfortunately, that is not the case here in Georgia. It is a nice balmy 82 degrees, the perfect weather for shorts and a tank top. We are hoping it will cool off my Halloween so we are sweating as we trick or treat this year! But aside from the weather woes, October is here and we are excited! And one thing that has us all super excited is this DIY Fluffy Monster slime. It is awesome, isn’t sticky, and best of all, will entertain your little ones for HOURS! 

I have to thank my friend Caroline for sharing the recipe with me…I’d seen her girls playing with is on her Instastories feed and I knew we needed the recipe in our house PRONTO. Chickadee has been playing with it for days and it even pulled Sprout away from his trains for a little bit, which is quite the victory! We happened to have all the ingredients on hand, but if you don’t I bet your neighbor can help you out. Here is the step by step picture tutorial. I’ll leave the recipe at the bottom if you want to print it off and see everything at once. 

First, you will need…

1 tbsp Borax, 1 cup of warm water, 8oz (2 cups or two regular bottles) of liquid glue, 3.5 – 4 cups of shaving cream, 1/2 cup water, 2 tbsp contact solution, and food coloring (optional)

fluffy slime ingredients

1. In a bowl mix together 1 tbsp of Borax with 1 cup of warm water. Stir until the Borax dissolves and your mixture turns clear again.

DIY Fluffy Slime 2

2. In a SEPARATE bowl, mix together 1 cup of Elmer’s glue, 1/2 cup of water, and 3.5 – 4 cups of shaving cream. Stir with a spatula until well combined. 

DIY Fluffy Slime 3

DIY Fluffy Slime 4

3. Then stir in the contact solution to the white fluffy mixtures.

Now is a good time to add in your food coloring (you can also however add it at the end and knead it into the fluffy slime after it comes together). If you are making green you can mix a few drops of blue and a few drops of yellow)

DIY Fluffy Slime 5

4. Now for the Borax solution. This is what makes our slime NOT STICKY!! While stirring slowly add the Borax solution 1 tablespoon at a time. The slime will begin to pull away from the edges of the bowl. When it begins to form a ball that isn’t sticking to the bowl you’ve added enough (it took me about 4 tablespoons)

DIY Fluffy Slime 6

DIY White Fluffy Slime

5. If you didn’t add the food coloring already, you can add it now. Just knead it into the fluffy slime until it is mixed together well. You will want to wear gloves or be prepared to have green fingers for a few days!

After your kids play for HOURS! you will want to store the slime in an air tight container or a ziplock bag. It will last quite a while and give your days of entertainment. Click the recipe below if you would like to print the DIY Fluffy Slime directions for later crafting!

DIY Fluffy Slime
Easy DIY Fluffy Slime that isn't sticky!!
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Total Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 tbsp Borax
  2. 1 cup Warm Water
  3. 1 cup Liquid Glue (2 bottles or 8oz)
  4. 3-4 cups of Shaving Cream
  5. 2 tbsp Contact Solution
  6. Food Coloring (optional)
Instructions
  1. 1. In a bowl mix together Borax and 1 cup warm water until dissolved and water is clear
  2. 2. In a separate bowl mix together glue, 1/2 cup water, shaving cream, and contact solution until well combined
  3. 3. Mix in Borax solution ONE tablespoon at a time until slime pulls away from the bowl and forms a blob (3-4 tablespoons)
  4. 4. If you want to dye your slime knead in several drops of food coloring (to make green use 4 drops of blue and 3 drops of yellow)
Notes
  1. Make sure you wear gloves and word on a cutting board, bowl, or parchment paper if adding food coloring. It will dye your hands and could stain your counters until it thoroughly mixed in! Then you should be good to go!
A Step In The Journey http://astepinthejourney.com/

 

Enjoy your hours of fun!! or should I say freedom :)

DIY Little Girl Bow Organizer

DIY Bow Organizer

THE BOWS! I don’t think I had any idea when Chickadee was born how the bows would take over. We have so many bows. I have several friends whose little ones won’t wear the bows, and I know there are pros and cons here :( I’m not sure how no bows would go over here, some things Chickadee and I compromise on (like not wanting to wear these cute mary janes I bought her for preschool and instead wanting to wear tennis shoes like all her friends, why does it start this soon?????) but not the bows. With her crazy beautiful curly hair we need to look like we try and maintain those locks and that is where the bows come in! As she has gotten bigger, so have the bows.

Bow Progression Collage

We started with these cute bow headbands, then graduated to the 3 inch bows, and now she is rocking the almost 5 inch…thank you Amazon for offering these in bulk! (affiliate link)

Chicken Wire Frame

For a while all the bows were in a big basket, but it just wasn’t working. So I grabbed an empty frame at Goodwill (this opening is about 12″ x 18′) and some chicken wire at Home Depot. Then I whipped up this DIY Bow Organizer in less than 30 minutes. Here is a little how to:

After wiping down the frame, I gave the front a quick coat of white paint. I wasn’t perfect and if anyone asks I am going for the distressed farmhouse look :). Then I unrolled the chicken wire to be 3 inches wider and longer than my 12×18 frame opening and cut it with wire cutters. Finally using one of my favorite tools, a staple gun, I attached the chicken wire to the back of the frame. EASY. PEASY. Finally I clipped on the bows and hung it on the wall. 

Bow Organizer

I’ve been training Chickadee and she knows to look at the colors in her clothes and then find a bow that matches. She really does love them. I often ask if she wants me to pull her hair back with a ponytail instead and 9 times out of 10 she says she would rather have a bow. Mission accomplished!

Happy Birthday Sprout!

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Little man turned TWO on April, 11th. We celebrated him with family, trains, nachos, and cupcakes! He is such a sweet spirit who loves well and plays hard. He is a chatterbox and tries his best to keep up with his big sister. I’ll do a 2 year old post soon! We decided to keep his 2nd birthday party small, to be honest all he cared about was a cupcake so just a family party was the way to go! Thomas the train is his current obsession so a train theme was a foregone conclusion. His Bebe had a train shirt made for him and we decorated with banners, balloons, and giant trains made of poster board. 

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I found this super cute train banner on Etsy in Kelly’s Cottage Shop. We used crepe paper streamers and red and blue balloons from Dollar Tree (who doesn’t love the Dollar Tree!). Lot’s of Choo Choo Sprout’s Two signs were around and another banner that read Sprout Station.

The cupcakes matched the theme of course. Sprout had been saying for weeks that all he wanted for his birthday was a brown cupcake, so we made all his wishes come true! Chocolate cupcakes with green icing. I used Hershey bars and black gel icing to create the tracks and found these mini Thomas, Percy, and James trains at Dollar General.

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We fed everyone lunch at the party with a nacho bar and mixed fruit! Super easy and everyone was able to customize their dish. My favorite ways to eat nachos, are to build them on a baking sheet and broil them for 2-3 minutes to melt everything together. They are DELICIOUS!

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After eating we played outside a lot and the big kids finally convinced Sprout to open presents. It was a great day celebrating our little man. I can’t believe he will be a BIG brother before he turns 3…well in less than three months really :) I have no doubt he will love baby girl fiercely. Happy Birthday sweet boy!

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