Hot Wheels-Tastic! Toddler Activity

We changed our climbing frame into Hot Wheels heaven for the afternoon using scrap. Let me take you on a tour!

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We used all our junk to create shoots. We taped drain pipes and cardboard tubing to the climbing frame and even added a lift!

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Our Geoboard made a great addition to the slide, sending the cars in all directions!

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We added on our homemade Sensory Car Track made from scrap materials too!

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We got a whole afternoons fun out of this!

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Fruitful Veg-ucation: Changing a Fussy Eater in Two Weeks? Prioritised Eating

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My son became a fussy eater from the age of about two and a half and is currently four years of age. During this time the foods he would eat consistently narrowed. He would avoid all vegetables, salad and most fruits, rice, pasta and potato other than waffles, chips and croquettes. He would eat bread, baked beans, tinned spaghetti and fish fingers. All other meat went untouched.

I am a believer in serving up foods time and time again eaten or not, hoping that eventually they will start to eat them, and I am against giving alternatives when they are refused. As long as they have had the opportunity to eat, if they skip a meal so be it.

However over such a prolonged period I began to bend to the pressure of wanting him to eat something! The feeling when throwing out the food he had refused wore me down and the repertoire of meals I would serve shrank drastically.

The Stick Or The Carrot?

In the early days we tried the stick. Pressuring him to eat up and making him remain at the table. This was extremely negative and a very traumatic experience for us all and resulting in tantrums and awful scenes.

We quickly abandoned the stick and went for the carrot idea, promising rewards such as pictures for his reward chart and puddings for trying / eating certain foods. This actually got us nearly nowhere as my toddlers stubbornness was do strong that just trying anything new was out of the question and brought tears and tantrums.

Many meals skipped and much guilt and frustration later we may have turned a corner and it is so simple I am cursing myself for not thinking of it earlier.

Prioritized Eating

Think about your own eating habits, what parts of a meal do you prefer or, eat first? With a nice Sunday Roast I always eat the Yorkshire pudding first and broccoli is defiantly last.

I had an idea to try and hold back one preferred item on a separate plate a basically use it as leverage to get him to try the vegetables and meats I new would normally be rejected.” No sugar snaps, no potato waffle”

This was of course met with tears and resistance the first time, but I stood my ground and he did try them in return for some if his favored food.

After each meal I decided to draw the foods he had tried on a chart and let him colour them in. I hoped in some way this could help the memory of these sink in and I rewarded him with pictures on his reward chart.

The second time was easier and the third was met with no complaints except haggling over how much he had to eat before he received some of his preferred food. Each time I pushed further to get him to eat more and to try foods further outside of his comfort zone.

Within one week my fussy toddler ate; chicken legs, butternut squash, sugar snaps, carrot, strawberry, beef stew, jacket potatoes, cabbage, pear, grapes, roast potatoes and spaghetti Bolognese! Is this the same child?

Each time he ate something from his plate he was rewarded with a small amount of something he preferred. Once he had tried something he often decided it wasn’t so bad and was happier to eat some for the reward.

I’m counting this as a major breakthrough because I placed a bowl of pasta and Bolognese sauce in front if him this evening (no reward food) and he ate it. No argument. He then asked for more.

Anyone who has a fussy eater can imagine my relief!

One question remains.

Why the hell did I not think of this before!!!

I now have hope. And I also hope it helps someone else with a fussy eater. Every toddler and fussy eater is different so Good Luck and I feel your pain!

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Fused Plastic Bag Collage Toddler Activity

Fused Plastic Bag Collage Toddler Activity

I found inspiration from this picture and decided to have a go at Fused Plastic Bag Art!

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Found at this link:
http://greenupgrader.com/13280/fun-with-fused-plastic/
This is brill and gives loads of info on what you can make from fused plastic bags but we’ve kept it as a nice and simple art activity for the toddlers to enjoy.
Cutting plastic with toddler scissors is hard so they needed help with this, but they are great with a glue stick and these are their creations (after I ironed them on a low heat between two pieces of grease proof paper).

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Not bad for two, four and five year olds. You can probably guess who’s is who’s!
I love the randomness of toddler art, they ignore all conventions and clichés. Truly Art for Art’s sake!

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Glittery Glue Peels

Glittery Glue Peels

Love love live this!

The Pinterested Parent

IMG_33881As the mother of a toddler I often look around my house & try to remember what it looked like before kids. I vaguely remember having a clean home once upon a time. I will be honest I have not been the best at keeping a tidy house since the birth of our daughter. I find it exhausting trying to keep her thousands of toys & books organized. This became even more the case once I started introducing sensory play and arts & crafts into our regular play. If you can get around the mess that will be made in your home from this kind of play, it can be very rewarding for you & your child.

My daughter loves arts & crafts, the messier the better, so when I found this craft in one of our library books that combined glue & glitter, I knew that she would have a…

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No Glue Window Collage Toddler Activity

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This activity has bags of learning potential and is great fun. You can create a collage with any age toddler, using any number of materials from around the house from cotton wool to bottle tops and pop sticks. Today we are exploring paper and card.

For this activity you will need:

Sticky back plastic,
Scrap paper/ card e.g old birthday cards and sweet wrappers,
Toddler scissors,
Optional extras are paper crimpers and shape cutters.

My two little munchkins set about cutting and crimping paper and card developing their hand strength and fine motor skills.

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The fruits of their labour get stuck to their sticky window. Will (4) puts stars in a row counting them and Poppy (2) places objects randomly.

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Things progress to outside and some flowers from the garden are added by Poppy and Will uses a glue stick to add more layers to the collage.

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It’s lovely to have the light come through the collage and have the backdrop of the garden. The best thing about this collage is it can be changed about and worked on all day! 🙂