I've loved the challenge of coming up with a fun, small activity for Ian each day. The key has been to keep it simple and to borrow great ideas from other people! :) (On that note, please share fun ideas that you hear about. Thanks for the Counting Cocunts idea, Doris! That site is awesome!) I also have really liked using the book First Art: Art Experiences for Toddlers and Twos by MaryAnn Kohl!
One idea from that book was making a tape collage using various types of tape. I knew Ian would like playing with tape since he always wants to use the tape when he sees me using it, but I didn't realize what a great learning experience it would be, too!
Ian didn't know at first that tape has a sticky side and a not-sticky side and he kept trying to stick the wrong side down to the paper. He was frustrated at first.
He quickly learned to put the sticky side DOWN!
Another side benefit was that he learned some new vocabulary -- duct tape, thick painting tape, thin painting tape, masking tape, and Scotch tape. :)
His finished projects actually looked kind of neat as well!
Ian had Caleb over one day last week ... right after our first rain storm in weeks and weeks! Needless to say, the boys were both VERY excited to jump and run and even play "Ring Around the Rosy" in the puddles!
We also did a few Easter egg hunts together! Neither boy really understood the concept of hiding the eggs for the other boy, but they were really excited to find the eggs that I had hidden. Just as fun for the boys was rolling the eggs all over the kitchen floor and excavating them up!
Last Friday, we went to the children's museum with some friends. Ian never gets tired of that place and eagerly chatters all the way there about what he wants to do, including the "rubber mulch pit,"
and the water table (He's learned that placing the fish directly onto the magnet is much easier than actually fishing).Friends Micah, Caleb, and Eli liked the water table, too.
Ian always loves the train table as well (so did Eli and Caleb).
Zane and Ian liked playing with sand, too.
We attempted to get a partial-group picture before leaving for the park for lunch, but it wasn't too successful. :)
While helping to get laundry in the bottom of the hamper, Ian thought it would be much easier to just climb all the way in!
On Sunday, we took Ian to his first-ever Sunday school class. Our church offers Sunday school beginning for 2-year-olds as long as one parent comes along. Matt and I plan to alternate going to Bible class and attending Sunday school with Ian. Matt said that Ian absolutely loved his first week of Sunday school (and was thrilled to learn that he didn't have to go to the nursery! ha ha).
Matt and Ian worked together on a craft -- a fruit tree with a black snake wrapped around the trunk. Matt said that Ian readily participated in the teacher's short Bible lesson about Creation and seemed to love all of the activities ...
Ian was a big fan of the apple juice at snack time. He also liked the free play with play dough and the songs (because he got to stand by Caleb). :)
Here's Ian proudly displaying his craft and toy snake "favor."
Monday's fun activity was something I modified from the art book for toddlers. The original idea suggested dyeing bubbles with food coloring and then blowing bubbles that would pop onto a piece of posterboard. Ian still isn't the most patient at blowing bubbles himself (we tried!), but I knew that he could spray the spray bottle independently. It worked very well!
He sprayed with blue first
and then added some green.
Ian's finished masterpieces ...
Yesterday, I had the idea to try a scavenger hunt with Ian. A fond memory I have from growing up is when my mom would design scavenger hunts for us – riddles hidden in plastic Easter eggs (no matter what the season) that would eventually lead us to a small prize or special snack. I wanted to start the tradition with Ian, but knew that he wouldn’t understand riddles yet (and of course can't read any words!).
Instead, I printed off seven clip art pictures (sofa, bed, bathtub, crib, fridge,
table, and television).
After he opened up each egg (saying “a paper!” excitedly each time) and saw the picture, he was able to independently find the place in our house where the next egg was hidden.
He loved the activity as much as the small prize at the end!
When Momma doesn't have a fun activity planned, Ian is happy to create his own. He spent quite a long time taking off each book jacket and sorting into a book pile, a book jacket pile, and a random-papers-I-found-in-the-books pile.
He also liked playing with balloons earlier today!
He still doesn't quite have the coordination to catch a ball, but he is thrilled that he CAN catch balloons!
In the process of getting Ian's big boy room ready (and cleaning out all of the closets), we found a Thomas train set that we got at a garage sale over 1.5 years ago. It has all of the pieces, including a fun crane that Ian has been carrying all over the house! The side benefits of deep cleaning, I guess! :)
On a side note, this week we went back to the grocery store where Ian was stranded in the locked car for about 10 minutes (see the last post if you have no idea what I'm talking about). Anyway, this week, right before I opened the passenger door to get him out, Ian asked, "Momma, can you open the door, or do we have to wait for Daddy?" :)
1 day ago