Tag Archive | for children

How I Made My Own Summer Reading Program

When I was younger I loved the summer reading program at my local library! It helped that I have always really enjoyed reading, but I also really enjoyed getting prizes, too!

However, when my family moved to the city we currently live in I didn’t really like the library’s summer reading program. It just wasn’t as fun to me. SO! even though I’ve kind of passed the age limit for most reading programs, I decided to make one for my siblings! I just took the basic ideas of the programs I had done in the past that I really liked and put my own twist to it.

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Now, this is my first year doing my own summer reading program for my siblings, so it’s kind of my “trial and error” year. But we have been doing it for about two weeks now and so far so good, but I have been (and will be) trying to keep track of things I will probably tweek or do differently in years to come.

I broke down the age groups to 1st-6th grade and then 7th+ I have siblings in the 2nd, 4th, 6th, 8th, 9th, and 11th grades. So I have two in the 1st-6th group and three in the 7th+ group (minus the 11th grader). I’m thinking I might change this up a little bit, because the most avid reader out of all of them is the 5th grader. Hmm, what to do!

Each child got an ice cream cone shape with their name on it as well as one ice cream scoop to start out with.

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I also gave everyone their own reading log to keep track of the date, number of pages read, and from what book they read.

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Each time they read ten pages, they get a sticker to put on their ice cream scoop. After they have earned ten stickers, they get a new ice cream scoop to add to their cone as well as a prize – a candy bar (for after lunch!)

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I told them that if they can read the grand prize amount, at the end of the summer they get their grand prize… an ice cream sundae!

For the younger kids, 500 pages/5 ice cream scoops. For the older kids 1,000 pages/10 ice cream scoops.

 

I went to a school supplies store to get some things to set up our “summer reading station” in our living room…

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In the above photo I folded a piece of construction paper over to make sort of a pocket to hold stickers and the extra ice cream scoops in.

The last thing I did was make a handmade sign. I wanted to get the kiddos involved with the putting-it-together process, so I asked them to draw on it! This was the product…

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I’ve got some pretty artistic siblings, if I do say so myself!

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So much fun! I really enjoyed putting this together for my siblings. One thing I am doing to kind of help them along is read aloud to them. This summer I am reading through the Chronicles of Narnia series with them (hence the top blog photo!)! They really seem to be enjoying it! The hardest part is just finding time when they are all ready to sit down! We are a big, busy family, so sometimes getting everyone to sit down at the same time is a bit difficult. But I have enjoyed the times we have had thus far!

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No Mess Finger Painting Activity

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I have tried making finger paint and helping my little siblings as they paint to try and avoid as little mess as possible. But that doesn’t work – it still goes everywhere. So, when I saw this idea on Pinterest (yes, I get many ideas from Pinterest) I just had to try it!

All I did was squirt some paint into a large storage bag, close it nice and tight, and tape it up to where they could have fun with it!

And they did! It was a big hit!

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(here’s my littlest sibling, Sammy, enjoying the bag-o-paint)

 

It’s a pretty simple way of keeping littles occupied so you can get a bit of work done. And I found that they really enjoy it! I hope you discover the same thing!

Toddler Biscuits

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These baby biscuits are easy to make and little ones love them! They’re nice and soft, too, which is always nice for baby food. I originally found the recipe (here) and started making them when my youngest brother was first starting to be introduced to solid food. He loved them so much I now have to keep them on hand constantly. But I don’t mind, they are easy to make and I love that he enjoys them so much!

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You will need:

1 cup flour

1 cup rice cereal

1 banana

2 tsp cinnamon

2 tbs vegetable oil

4-5 tbs water

Preheat oven to 425*F

To get it nice and smooth, I mix the dry ingredients together, like normal. But blend the wet ingredients in the Vitamix before adding into the flour mixture just to make sure there are no big chunks or anything. Also, when you are mixing it all together, it should end up looking like regular biscuit batter. If it looks too dry (which has happened to me before) just add in a tablespoon of water at a time until it looks right.

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When it’s all mixed up, lightly flour the counter and roll out your biscuit mixture.

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After that, take whatever cookie cutter you like and start filling up your baking sheet (I like to use a stone sheet, it makes them come out softer). Here, I use a gingerbread man shape for my brother!

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Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes.

Cool, and let your little ones enjoy!