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Play with the
Go Fly a Kite!
Buy a kite and assemble it, or make your own from scratch. Even a
plastic grocery store bag with some string attached to the handles can
become a kite if a child holds the string and runs. The fish kite in the
picture at the bottom is made from two paper plates with a paper cup
stapled between them to make a mouth and catch the wind. Strings are
tied on either side of the mouth and joined in the middle to connect to
a single string. Fins and tail are pieces of paper plates and crepe
paper streamers are attached to the end of the tail. So, go fly a kite.
Play with the wind.
Spring Cleaning was a huge project where everything in the house was cleaned
from stem to stern. In today's busy world, it's very challenging for working
moms to accomplish such a daunting task.
out an area that is screaming for a clean-over and get the whole family to
pitch in for some good clean fun and make a difference together.
focus on just one room, one closet or even a single drawer.
clean baseboards with
a wet sponge. They can sort through their own toys and items.
Try clothes on to see what doesn't fit anymore or put winter clothes away
and put summer clothing close at hand. A child can take a vacuum hose
attachment and get into edges and corners more easily than mom.
children can take all of the items, especially plastic things, out of a
kitchen cabinet and then an adult can clean and replace items.
can be washed, curtains and draperies can be dry-cleaned or washed, in one
room at a time.
Whatever you choose to do, talk or even sing (or whistle) while you work.
Make it a pleasant time and build family relationships while you clean. When
you're done, celebrate your accomplishments with an easy dinner of pizza or
something else that doesn't require more work from mom or dad.
Lions & Lambs
It is said that
March "comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb". Read stories about
lions and lambs. Include the fable about the lion who helped the mouse and
was repaid when the mouse chewed through the ropes of a hunter's net after
the lion got caught. Play with stuffed animals. Draw pictures of lions and
lambs or sculpt some using salt dough or clay. For younger children read
nursery rhymes like, Baa Baa Black Sheep, Mary Had a Little Lamb, Little
Bo Peep and Little Boy Blue.
Handkerchief Parachutes and More
handkerchief parachute by tying a clothespin or small plastic toy figure
to a handkerchief or square piece of cloth. Tie four strings to the
clothespin and then tie each string to one corner of the handkerchief.
Roll it up and toss it in the air and watch it float down.
balloons to strings and let them dance in the wind. Helium balloons are
even more fun but tie them securely.
Play with pinwheels in the wind.
Have a Rain Drop
Each person picks a raindrop as they hit
the top of the window. Follow your raindrop until it gets to the bottom of
the window and see whose raindrop wins the race. Then start at the top and
do it again!
If you have flowers growing in your yard, make a bouquet and bring it
indoors for your family to enjoy, or take a bouquet to a friend or neighbor
to brighten their day. Watch as spring flowers begin to poke out of the
ground, grow and then blossom. Celebrate with excitement as you enjoy the
Make a daisy or clover chain by braiding the stems of flowers
Wear it in your hair for a little while.
Take pictures of spring flowers.
Make crepe paper flowers
The daffodils in the picture begin with a short strip of yellow crepe paper
about two inches high. Push one finger between two fingers along the to edge
to "scrunch" the edge of the crepe paper and make it look like the center of
Cut a 2 inch strip of crepe paper and color it orange with markers. Then cut
in into very thin strips about 1" down. Twist each strip to make the center
of the flower.
Fold an 8" strip of yellow crepe paper accordion-style so that each sheet of
the folded piece is about 1 inch wide. Cut a petal shape so that it remains
attached at the bottom and makes 8 identical petals.
Wrap the orange piece around the end of a pipe cleaner to make the center of
the flower. Then wrap the piece with the scrunched places around the orange
part. Wrap the petals around the other two pieces to finish the flower.
Twist floral tape around the twisted crepe paper at the bottom of the flower
to hold it in place. Cut green leaves out of construction paper and place
them near the bottom of the pipe cleaner. Wrap the entire pipe cleaner with
floral tape and wrap it around the leaves to hold them in place. Make a
bouquet. (If you don't have floral tape available, then strips of green
crepe paper can also be used. Sometimes you might need a little tape to hold
Make flowers from egg carton cups
Cut two cups from an egg carton for each flower. Cut petal shapes around
the top part of the cup. Place the two cups together and use an ice pick
to push a hole through the centers of the bottoms of the cups. Put a
pipe cleaner through the hole and twist or fold it to keep it from
pulling back through. Push the two cups together. Glue a pom pom for the
center of the flower, make the pipe cleaner look like the center or glue
some cut fringe pieces of tissue paper for the center. Cut leaves from
construction paper and tape them to the pipe cleaner. Put a single
flower in a vase or make a whole bouquet to celebrate spring.
Plant Vegetable Seeds
If you have a garden area, let the kids plant some vegetable seeds there. If
not, start some seeds in pots. Put some small pebbled in the bottom of a pot
for drainage, then a little sand and then fill the pot with good soil. Let
the kids put the seeds in the ground and make labels so they know what was
planted in each area of the garden or in each pot.
plants can be started indoors in pots. If you are going to transplant seeds outdoors,
start them in soil that has be placed in fiberboard egg carton cups. Plant
one seed per cup. The roots will grow right through the container bottom
once the plant is in the ground.
Radishes are usually the first plants to come up out of the
ground, so we usually plant some of those because they are exciting.
Sometimes, even kids who hate radishes will eat a couple, just because they
Collect Bugs and Other
Nature comes alive in many ways in the spring, and there are
usually bugs-a-plenty. Monitor bug collecting to make sure
that a child doesn't get something that will sting, bite or is
poisonous. Put them in a "bug house". You can purchase them or
make one from an empty clear plastic jar. Replace the lid with
a piece of nylon net rubber-banded over the top to let air in
and keep bugs contained for observation. Put a small cap full
of water in your bug house and some leaves and twigs. Let
children watch them, look at them with a magnifying glass and
then release them back to their outdoor home.
With other "critters" like frogs and lizards, use the same
catch, observe and release process and make sure that the
animals are not harmed (or harmful). We always do a "photo-shoot"
and get a picture to remember the small animals we find and
Braid the stems together and wear it in your hair.
Float paper boats on rainy day puddles
Look for four leaf clovers
Play with the wind. Go fly a kite, blow bubbles, fly a seed
pod helicopter or watch a pinwheel whirl around.
Listen to the sounds of nature.
Listen to Birds. Try to identify the sounds you hear.
Take a stone-kicking walk. See if you can kick the same
stone from the start of your walk until your return home.
Look for signs of
Enjoy flowers. Watch as plants begin to poke out of the
ground, grow and blossom. Enjoy the blossoms and new leaves
on the trees. Look for birds' nests or birds building nests.
Sometimes they will be low enough that a child can be
hoisted to see the eggs and then the baby birds. (We have
hummingbirds that nest in our pine tree and always enjoy
watching them from a distance. Look for new life everywhere.
Activities for Lent
Make a Prayer
Make a prayer chain with construction paper links. Use pink,
lavender and purple pieces of paper. Prayers can be of
praise, thanksgiving, contrition (being sorry), and petition
(asking for things). Write a prayer on each strip of paper
before stapling, pasting or taping it into a link on your
chain. Hang the chain up where you can see it and remember
to keep prayer in your day, especially during Lent.
The early Christians made pretzels during Lent because the
shape looked like arms folded in prayer. This recipe makes
delicious pretzels but they don't taste like the
"store-bought" variety. Start a new tradition and make your
own pretzels or just buy some from the store and share them
as a family snack in the evening. Discuss the symbolism of
the shape of the pretzel.
4 cups flour
1 Tbls. butter
1 pkg. dry yeast.
1 1/3 cups water
lye (1 level tbls. per half gallon of water)
egg yolk - well beaten
Mix flour and butter together. Dissolve yeast in warm water.
Add yeast and remaining water gradually until mixture is a
dough than can be rolled into long string. Let the dough
rest for 20 minutes. Cover it with a clean tea towel to keep
it warm or place it in a cold over with a pan of water that
is still hot from boiling.)
Take the dough and roll it into strips. Let them dry for a
couple of minutes and then shape them to look like pretzels.
Put a dab of water where the ends join the pretzels and
pinch them to hold them together. Let them rest, just until
they begin to rise.
In a stainless steel pot (not aluminum), bring 1/2 gallon of
water to a hard boil and add 1 level teaspoon of lye. (This
is an adult job because lye is caustic and dangerous to
the pretzels into the boiling water and take them out as
they float to the top. Drain the water. Brush the top of
each pretzel with beaten egg yolk. Place on a greased cookie
sheet. Sprinkle with coarse salt. Bake at 500°
for 10 minutes. Remove them from the over and change the
temperature to 400 and give the oven a little time to cool
to the re-set temperature. Put the pretzels back into the
oven until they are completely dry. (Thicker pretzels will
take longer than thin ones.) Store in a tightly sealed
A responsible adult should supervise any child or children taking
part in any of the activities listed on this website in order to
avoid potential dangers or injuries. Their are no activities for
children that are completely safe. Children are experts at finding
ways to get hurt that never occur to adults. All activities should
be supervised. The author/publisher of this site does not assume any
liability for damage caused by injury sustained by conducting any of
the projects on this site. The adults who are working/playing with
children are the only ones who are able to discern whether a
specific situation is safe or appropriate for a specific child or