Friday, September 19, 2014

Ghosts, Bats & Pumpkins...Oh my!

     I have joined with the Kid Blogger Network (KBN) to bring you a series of great Halloween round-ups and a $2000 cash (paypal) giveaway with four winners of $500 each.  Each blog that participates will be sharing their own round-up of Halloween crafts and activities.  If you are looking for some seasonal inspiration, you  have come to the right place! 

     I chose the theme of Ghosts, Bats and Pumpkins for my round-up.  There are lots of creative and fun crafts and activities to try. Click through the links to read the tutorials or pin for later when you have more time.  It would be really challenging to get them all in before Halloween. If you did, your home or school would be the talk of the town!

Friendly Ghost Crafts (from left to right)

Bat Crafts (from left to right)

Pumpkin Crafts and Activities (from left to right)

Check out the other Halloween round-ups for even more ideas and inspiration!

     I hope you gained some inspiration to try at least one of the seasonal crafts shared above. Now it is time for you to enter to win some cash to help you and your family.  You could put it towards expenses, a weekend getaway or tons of great craft supplies for your children!  There are many entry options, and each one helps out the bloggers that are participating.  It also gives you a chance to follow them through social media so that you can see their creative ideas, educational activities and parenting wisdom hot off the press. What do you think of the craft and activity round-ups?  Would you like to see more giveaways on Capri + 3? I'd love to hear from you in the comments.  In case you missed it, you can enter to win an introductory box + 1st month box of the educational subscription for children (Pre-K-1st) of Animal Trackers

Win one of FOUR $500 cash prizes directly in your paypal account! This giveaway is open internationally. You must be 18+ years old to enter. Void where prohibited. No purchase necessary. Winners will be notified via email and have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen. Please see detailed terms and conditions below the giveaway for more info.


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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

While at the Farm-Children's Song #playfulpreschool

  This week the theme for Playful Preschool is the farm.  This theme works well for us because we  love to visit farms.  We also have a membership to a local farm to pick produce. It is fun and educational each time we visit.  We have experienced many county fairs and festivals featuring farm animals. The Sugar Snaps enjoy learning about tractors and farm animals.

      They love the classic song, Old Macdonald Had a Farm.   I was ready for a new song about animal recognition and sounds and decided to change the classic camp song, "The Other Day I Met a Bear," into a song about farm animals.  I remember singing that camp song when I was in elementary school.  Our children are much younger than I was at that time. Now that I'm a parent, I am not crazy about the camp song's mention of a gun.   So, I took a total departure from the original lyrics and only used the tune.

     It is tricky getting preschoolers to sing together so that it makes sense when you hear it.  I learned this while we were practicing our new farm song.  They were much easier to understand in in groups of two than four.  Here is a video of Xayden and Ryder singing with me, in case you are not familiar with the tune of the song.  It cracks me up how serious their facial expressions are. 

     You can include any number of farm animals in the song. It is a great way for preschoolers to practice animal recognition and sounds as well as follow instructions.  They need to remember when to repeat back and when to sing together.   I chose to end the song by meeting a farmer.  This next video Clip is Capri singing the farmer verse with me.  She and Grayson had trouble singing together so she did a solo.

 I made a free printable for you with the lyrics:


     What activities do you enjoy doing with  your preschoolers?  Are there any songs your they particularly enjoy?  The Sugar Snaps are at the age where they walk around the house singing songs they've learned.  It's fun to see them having a good time and learning to memorize too. 

Plan Your Learning Week with Preschool Activities for the Farm Theme

From the ‪#‎PLAYful‬ Preschool Education Team!
Literacy, Mathematics, Science, Art, Sensory, Songs and MORE!!!!

Farm Animal Letter Sounds by Mom Inspired Life
Learning to Write: Labeling the Farm by Growing Book by Book
Make a Who Am I Farm Animal Book by The Educators' Spin On It
Corn Life Cycle & Sequencing Cards for Preschool by The Preschool Toolbox Blog
While at the Farm:  Children's Farm Song by Capri + 3
Farm Animal Counting and Sorting Sensory Bin by Life Over C's
Farm Themed Count and Add Activity for Preschool by Rainy Day Mum
Corn Painting - An Art Activity for a Preschool Farm Theme by Fun-A-Day!
Preschoolers DIY Farm by Tiny Tots Adventure
Preschool Science: Duck Feather Experiment by Raising Lifelong Learners
Farm Animal Sort by Powerful Mothering
Wash the Farm: Fruits and Vegetable Sensory Play for Preschoolers by The Kennedy Adventures
Farm Activities Discovery Table by Little Bins for Little Hands

For further discussion on the topic of preschool literacy activities related to family, check out the Google Hangout on this topic.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Artsy Play Wednesday-Halloween Crafts

   Capri + 3,  Multi-Testing Mommy  Country Fit Family
     Welcome to Artsy Play Wednesday. In our ongoing linky, the newest entries show first.  The advantage to you if you are linking up, is there is better exposure for your posts because we share them each Wednesday.  Capri + 3, Multi-testing Mommy and Country Fit Family share different features each week, increasing your chances for being featured.  If you are looking for ideas to try with your children or students, you can always check here and click through the links to find some inspiration.  This week, I am featuring Children's Halloween Crafts.


     Country Fit Family (formerly Baby Giveaways Galore) shared a cute Halloween Spider craft.  I love all the fall colors covering the spider!

     Crafty Journal has two of my features this week.  I can always count on her to bring fun craft ideas to Artsy Play Wednesday.  I love her Mummified Can and Scaredy Cat  Halloween crafts.  They are way too cute to be scary!

     Enchanted Homeschooling Mom shares a fun way to paint using corn and corn husks.  I imagine you could even try this with leftover corn cobs. 

     Now it is your turn to share your posts and to find new ideas to try.  If you share a post you give permission for us to use one image individually or in a round-up collage with a link back to your post so that we can feature you.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Animal Trackers-Review and Giveaway

* Disclosure:  I was given the first month's introductory kit along the first month subscription box.   A couple of extra masks and worksheets were also provides so that the Sugar Snaps could each try out the activities for the purposes of this review.  One introductory box and first month box will also be given to a Capri + 3 reader.  No further compensation was given.  All opinions are my own.

    I was excited to have the chance to review the new Animal Trackers monthly subscription program for children.  Each month, children follow Bodie the bear as he travels on an animal adventure.  The introductory kit comes with a special box where your child can keep all the animal treasures. Every month, there are projects and learning worksheets that come along with a plastic replica of the month's featured animal.  There is also a card with a picture of the featured animal on one side and the animal's paw or hoof print on the back of the card.  There is a metal ring to attach the card to so that each month, your child can attach the next animal to the ring to keep all of their prints organized for comparison.

     There were educational worksheets that went along with the theme.  The theme we received was zebras.  Educational worksheets included activities with capital and lower case matching, word and image matching and a math worksheet where they drew the number of stripes corresponding to the number next to each zebra.  The Capital and lower case matching and math worksheets were perfect for their developmental level.  The word and image matching was a little advanced, so I helped them sound out the words.  I liked the educational value of the worksheets.  The only minor issue I had with one worksheet is that it showed the image of a gun which was to be matched with the corresponding word.  I simply crossed the word and image out so they did not see it.  They have never seen a gun before and I would like to keep it that way as long as I can.

     There was a really fun art activity that included a math sequencing component.  They placed 'Magic Noodles' onto a zebra matching the black and white stripes with the corresponding pieces.  They needed to figure out which order to put the pieces based on color.  The noodles attached to the paper by dipping them onto a wet sponge or paper towel first and then pressing them onto the paper.  All of the Sugar Snaps loved this activity.

     There is a fun zebra mask included in the first month's box.  As I mentioned, a few extra were thrown in so they could all try one.  They immediately began to act like zebras and spontaneously began a game of 'zebra hide and seek.'  They continue to have fun with their zebra masks. 

    There was a fact card about zebras included in the box.  It was fun reading them the facts about zebras and discussing what we learned.  I learned some new things about zebras too!   The  plastic zebra is a cute addition and it would be fun to keep all of the animals together in the box along with the fact cards.  The kit also came with facts about the Earth and continents, animal stickers and a savanna background on which to place the animal stickers.  If you leave the backing on the stickers, the background can be used again and again to create many different animal scenes.


     Now it is your turn to enter to win a starter kit of animal trackers and the first month's subscription box.  This would be a great subscription service to join to enhance your child's education.  It would also make a wonderful educational gift.

This contest is open only in the U.S.  Winners have 48 hours to respond by email or an alternate winner will be chosen.  Capri + 3 is not responsible for prize fulfillment.  Prize will be generously fulfilled by Animal Trackers Club.

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