Thursday, 9 February 2017

Guest Judge Kidscrafts101

I love instagram and check it whenever I have a spare moment. I am always inspired and motivated to try new ideas and love the positive community and feedback everyone offers each other. To me, instagram is like buying a great magazine - you can't put it down and are mesmerised and inspired by the beautiful photos.

Last week, I was lucky enough to be invited by the hosts of kidscrafts101, Red Ted Art and Incredibusy to guest judge their weekly instagram challenge. Each week, teachers, parents and caregivers share easy craft ideas for kids using #kidscrafts101 and 9 winners are chosen by the guest judge every Monday. I had the pleasure of choosing the winners last week from the wonderful, interesting and varied kids art and craft activities posted on #kidscrafts101.

When looking for winners, I am always drawn to unique, original and interesting ideas that I haven't tried or seen before. I also like activities that provide learning opportunities for children through the process as well as the finished product. These ideas all appealed to me and after deliberating for quite some time, I came up with these winners........

Huge congrats to everyone who entered - there were so many great ideas which means there are lots of happy children getting the benefit of all of these lovely hands on learning experiences!!



@tinyn3rds
Lemon Prints

@lnnally
Leaf Collage

@kaja4kids
Cardboard Washing Machine

@madhatterpies
Frozen Paint

@Tiger_tilly
Cardboard Houses

@littlelifelonglearner
Hand and Feet Painting

@mielaerkerasmussen
Collage Craft

@heathfernance
Painting with a Spinning Citrus Juicer

@teachgrowlove
Making Marbled Paper

I'm sure you'll agree that these ideas are worth trying with your little ones. Check out these fabulous Instagram posts and all of the other wonderful ideas on #kidscrafts101. If you haven't checked out Instagram yet then I really think you should check it out!!

Niccola

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Recycled Fairy Garden



Here is a fairy garden that is kid size, versatile, robust, interesting and easy and to make.
More importantly, it is made entirely from recycled materials.


We started with some tree cookie stumps for fairy seats.

An old electrical cable for a fairy table.

A little red and white paint.

A cute little fairy garden for all to enjoy!!

Why don't you have a go at making your own fairy garden?
Niccola













Monday, 16 January 2017

Natural Alphabet

Alphabet Sorting


I drew a grid on a piece of calico and wrote the the letters of the alphabet in every square (you could use paper, card or any material). I then used anything from nature that I could write the alphabet on. Once you start looking your realise that there are loads of resources right at your fingertips. All of these nuts and leaves were found on the ground at the park across the road from my house. Don't you just love a resource that costs nothing! The gum nuts have been used before on the blog "Bringing Nature Inside".







See what natural resources you can find in your local area.
Have fun!!!
Niccola

Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Happy New Year

I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas and New Year and are ready to make 2017 a sensational year!!! I have just returned from a beautiful family holiday feeling refreshed, positive and motivated for the year ahead. In 2016, I started several projects that I'm ready to get stuck into and launch this year - exciting times!!!
I also spent quite a bit of time on Instagram and learnt so much from fellow instagramers. I have found a wonderful Early Childhood community on Instagram that have been very supportive and encouraging. This week I thought I would share some of my favourite pics from my Instagram feed from 2016. 


This is a photo of a new product I launched in 2016. Story Stones

 
I loved these recycled plant holders that I made with my class for a STEM trial group.


I just love the simplicity of this activity. Recycled laundry scoops, sieves and Pom poms in water.


Extending creativity in the block area.


More Pom poms....


Writing doesn't have to be done inside on paper.


Adorable Christmas reindeer 


All the very best for 2017.
Niccola

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Outdoor Christmas Fun!

Cut out Christmas tree shapes. I used old plastic file dividers in 3 colours - red, green and yellow.

Write the numbers 1-5 or 1-10 depending on your child's age.


I bought these water spray bottles at IKEA for $1 each and they happened to be the colours I wanted.

I put the Christmas tree shapes and the water bottles in the water trolley.

The children pegged the trees to the clothes line, in order from 1-5 or randomly. They identified the numbers as they pegged them on the line and then squirted them. They loved aiming at their favourite number and using the spray bottles !




It was a great way to teach and reinforce numbers, colours, a great fine-motor activity and lots of Christmas fun !

See you next Tuesday
Niccola

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Christmas Blocks


I love Christmas and love setting up Christmas activities and small world play. I am using the Nativity blocks I made last year in the block area but thought I would make a little Santa village to promote play at the wonder table.


My lovely husband cut some wood into house shapes for me this week. After a quick sanding, they were ready to be painted. My son helped me paint patterns, windows and doors on the houses. We decided to only use red and white paint as we were trying to make the houses look like they were from Santa's village.



I added a wooden sleigh, Santa, Christmas lights, little figurines, pebbles, logs, a Christmas tree and some cotton wool for snow.


The children loved playing with the Christmas village and spent ages talking, sharing and throwing the snow everywhere. By the end of the day the poor Santa land looked like a demolition site but by the time they arrive tomorrow it will look as pretty as a picture.


Have a go at making some Christmas houses for a village in your home or classroom.

Niccola

Monday, 7 November 2016

Bird Feeders


I have made bird feeders in the past with my class and they are fun to make but most importantly, they attract a lot of birds. We have such a beautiful natural playground that the children absolutely love and hopefully now the birds will enjoy it as much as the children.

I collected a big bag of pine cones for the children to use.

I bought some bird seed suitable for wild birds and a jar of glucose.
The children painted the sticky glucose all over the pine cones, making sure to get it into all of the little crevices.


Now for the birdseed!! The children rolled, sprinkled, pushed and covered the pine cones with birdseed.
I tied string around the pine cones and hung them from the trees. 
Now all we need to do is watch for our new visitors !!!
Niccola