Photo Booth Fun

By now most of us are familiar with the Photo Booths at wedding and graduation receptions.  You get to pose with props and have fun making pictures and memories.  Why not try the same kind of thing at the next family gathering?  With graduations, confirmations, and summer vacations around the corner, there is a site that has free downloadable templates for props such as mustaches, glasses, lips, etc.  You can trace them onto card stock and color, embellish with glitter, feathers, fake fur, and then mount them to wooden dowels.

Take photos of your party guests posing with the props, then print them out or e-mail them as a thank you for attending.  Download your sign, prop templates for your very own photo booth at: http://www.familycircle.com/photobooth.

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A Taste of the Tropics

If you’re looking for a healthy dessert or side dish that you can bring to a pot luck, buffet or picnic, try making this version of AMBROSIA using tropical fruits.

To make the fruit salad pictured you’ll need the following:  One cored, peeled and cubed pineapple (canned will work as well), two cans of whole mandarin oranges, one ripe, diced mango, two peeled and sliced kiwi fruits, dried cranberries for color and shredded coconut to sprinkle on top.  Mix all the fruit in a large bowl. Chill and serve.

You can also try a citrus version using                                                  tropical fruit salad

pink and yellow grapefruit, oranges,  and mandarins. Try toasting the coconut for a slightly different flavor.

Math Fun For All Ages.

For those who enjoy the fun and challenge of solving math puzzles, problems and activities, there are a number of awesome math sites to try.

1.kidsmathgamesonline.com:  Here you’ll find lessons  about MONEY, ALGEBRA, GEOMETRY, and just plain fun broken into grade levels K – 8.  There are also worksheets, quizzes and videos to watch.

2. gogomathgames.com: Everything you can think of using numbers in fun and interesting games and activities can be found here.

3. mathnook.com: Offers homework help, games, problem solving activities and number fun. There are lots of games for practicing fractions.

Celebrate Spring with Crafts

My blogging friend Gail Terp has a wonderful post full of websites that have kid friendly spring crafts and activities.  Most require everyday materials you would have around the house.  Freshen up your home or make some gifts for grandparents and loved ones that will be treasured.

 Check out these sites:

 Spring Crafts from Kaboose:  Watering cans, bonnets, Earth Day crafts

 Spring Crafts from Martha Stewart:  Flowers, umbrellas, cards…

 Spring Crafts for Kids from Busy Bee: Butterflies, flowers, birds…

 Spring Craft Ideas for Kids from DLTK: Bunnies, insects, flowers…

 Spring Crafts from Spoonful: Windchime, scarecrow, food…

 Spring Crafts from First Palette: Bean bags, puppets, hats…

 Spring Crafts for Kids from Activity Village: Candy, flowers, refrigerator magnets…

 Kids Spring Crafts from All Kids Network: Caterpillars, rainbows, flowers…

HAPPY SPRING!

Happy Earth Day!

Celebrate Earth Day on Monday, April 22, by planting a tree.  The Arbor Foundation will send free seedlings to anyone who wants them. Go to:arborday.org for your 10 free tree seedlings.

If you have no place to plant a tree but would like to honor the day, take the kids to a local park or playground and pick up trash for disposal and recycling. Everyone gets a good feeling knowing they are doing something positive to make a local spot better.

Here are some green things you can do to celebrate Earth Day.

1. Use less paper. Copy on both sides of the paper or use blank side as scrap paper.

2. Buy copy paper that is made from recycled content. RECYCLE used paper and magazines.

3. Wrap gifts in re-usable gift bags or newspaper.

4. Use washable rags/cloths to wipe hands or spills instead of paper towels. Saves money and trees.  Cloth napkins are also better for the environment and are easy to wash in a machine.

5. Try going Screen Free for the day. Avoid TV, video games, computer and unnecessary texting.  Discover the world outside.  Learn a skill like pitching a tent, building a tipi campfire, planting a herb garden or identifying plants/trees in the neighborhood.

Enjoy the fresh air and beauty of “nature’s air conditioners”. Hug a tree and have a Happy Earth Day!

CELEBRATE POETRY MONTH

To get into the spirit of National Poetry Month, here are some wonderful books I’ve recently read written in verse.

1. Love That Dog written by Sharon Creech tells about a young boy’s introduction to poetry and how it doesn’t have to rhyme.  He gets the hang of it and writes some verse of his own.

2. May B written by Caroline Starr Rose takes us to the Kansas prairie in the mid 1800’s as a young girl struggles to survive through a cold, lonely winter.

There are also some great websites for young poets.  http://www.davidlharrison.wordpress.com offers readers a chance to submit poems based on monthly topics.    At  http://www.kidsimaginationtrain.blogspot.com  written by Randi Lynn Mvros and Irene Roth, readers ages 5-12 can read book reviews, poetry, and fiction.  They can also try illustrating their favorite stories in this interactive site.

Don’t forget to check out some poetry books from your local library.  Shel Silverstein, Ogden Nash, Emily Dickenson, Walt Whitman, and many others have books for children of all ages.

Then, why not try writing a few poems of your own.  Here is one I did to celebrate the wonder of lightening bugs.

LIGHTNING BUGS

 Signals flashing

Blinking lights

Diamonds on the fly

 Tiny torches

Winking, glowing

Neon of the night

 Fairy taxis

Hailed to a stop

                                                       Caught in a cave of flesh

A piece of moonlight

Clutched in a fist

Fingers tickled open

Signals flash again

Captured prisoners

Set free

 

Happy Poetry Month!

Another Surface Tension Experiment

Here is a variation of the Rainbow experiment I posted last month. Check out this blog for other science activities.

sciencefunwithmom

This is an experiment that kids love!!!!!  you need a small flat dish, food coloring, 1/2 cup of room temperature whole milk (the fat content is important),a small amount of liquid dishwashing soap and a toothpick or cotton swab.

Pour the milk into the dish. Put a drop (or two) of a different color in each corner of the dish.  Using the toothpick or swab, place a drop of the liquid soap in the center of the milk ( you can even insert the end of the toothpick into the milk).  WATCH THE COLORS ROLL!

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