Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Chore Chart

We are very excited to be going on vacation soon. My daughters  (4 1/2 and 6 1/2) really wanted to earn some money  for vacation to buy souvenirs. Instead of just giving them the money, I was really proud that they wanted to earn it. I took a piece of paper and drew a vial with lines. Each line is worth 25 cents- the large line makes a dollar. The choice in price is yours however. This just fits my budget. At the end of each day I draw in with green colored pencil how much they have earned.

Think about things that your child CAN do- even if it involves a little help from you. You can also add things that your child may need improvement on into their chore chart. To help them remember what they can do I drew some stick figure versions of the girls onto their pages.

They can wipe your counters down  if you clear off the counters first
They can wipe down their place mats
The can mop a floor either with a rag or the mop.
Sweep the floors
Help empty out the dishwasher and load it
Wash a couple non breakable dishes by hand
Set a table
Clear the table
Sort the laundry
Fold Laundry/put away laundry on their own.
Clean their room: put away toys without complaint.
Help feed an animal
They can make their beds 
Not "act out" at school
Do their homework without complaint or since it's summer practice some homework.
Play well with others
Listen (not always perfectly- but for the most part)
Wash properly in the bathroom without assistance
Brush teeth with no complaints or by self
Play nicely with a sibling
No complaining (little prompting to "stop")

---Before you think I'm making this too easy for them to earn money I would like to note that I'm not against taking the money back for negative behavior all day.----

When the time comes to "pay out" We're giving it to them in cash on vacation and they have to physically be the ones to buy it. This gives them 1) a sense of pride that they earned this money and 2) a value of money "Do I really want to buy this or do I want to save up for something bigger?"

As seen in Parents Magazine

Our second time being published in Parents Magazine!! This was the first "It Worked For Me!" section though, so we're very excited.

We took an old water dispenser and stuck it outside on a shelf at our apartment so that the girls could water easily on their own without dropping a watering can and spilling everywhere.

Teaching Kids about being healthy

So I saw this on pintrest and there is no original source for the teeth diagram.

I saw this book online and checked them out at my library. Then I found a craft (no original source)
 to do to show the girls how to brush and floss their own teeth properly. To be honest between each book, the best one was the "Brush, Floss, and Rinse" book for teeth- although I disagreed with their "brush then floss" I had always been taught by the dentists we go to to floss first THEN brush because it's like vacuuming then dusting-pointless.

  We took a piece of red for the gums, pink for the tongue and cardboard egg cartons for the teeth. We cut a piece of yarn for each girl and called it "floss" in between each tooth.

We talked about how food gets caught in your teeth and on the grooves (tops of the egg carton) and how flossing only gets in between. How you need to brush each tooth really well (we used my hair brush as a tooth brush) to get all the food off your teeth to prevent cavities or "Sugar bugs"

Another fun thing we've done already :Brush your teeth sign

Since the orange book wasn't just about teeth (in fact only one page was really about teeth the rest was about keeping germs away and eating healthy)
We re-went over our food pyramids and talked about wheat foods are health for their teeth and bodies.


I'm in love with the way this mother taught her son about germs

She took a spray bottle and sprayed her sons hand calling it the germs. Then they shook hands and her hands were wet. Meaning he spread his germs.

She taught him to sneeze into the bend of his arm or a tissue. She took a tissue and sprayed it with water (after they dried their hands from the previous demonstration) and shook hands. Their hands were both dry meaning no germs were spread.

Next she spread cocoa powder on his hands and hand him run them under water.

She took bread (and me being cheap got a clean white towel) and had him wipe his hands revealing that although his hands looked clean they were still  dirty.

Then he re-washed using soap and water and his hands were clean. Reminding him that he should use soap and water to wash away germs.

If you found these helpful, cool or funny- please follow me. I'd appreciate it. It gets a little lonely over here.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Summer ideas

We've been busy here trying to keep the boredom low on our list during the summer. We're trying to come up with one "exciting" things to do each day-- even is that means going to the library (which is what I love most!)

Boredom busters:

We go to the pool at our complex and trying to learn to swim

We tend our garden- which we started back in April.

In June:

 We started them in little cups and waited until they were sprouting and frost was gone for us to plant them in the actual ground based on where the back of the packet suggested. We have basically just been watering, weeding and keeping an eye on it. I think it's been great for the girls to learn to take care of plants, watch them grown and really know where their food comes from.

 We can't wait to use the pumpkins for Halloween!

Build a Lego city out of a cardboard box. 

We took a long piece of cardboard, covered it with brown wrapping (or maybe a couple of brown paper bags?) and with sharpie drew in streets, sidewalks, lights, and my husband even drew a Safeway and Chipotle

LOWES BUILD AND GROW WORKSHOP: Every other Saturday Lowe's has a FREE building workshops for kids.. Sign up in advance for a free apron and goggles.

HOME DEPOT: The first Saturday of every month Home depot has a FREE workshop as well. No sign up required

Here are some other ideas from my pintrest sight: 
.glow in the dark play doh
turn a book into real life
target practice

DIY American Girl Doll accessories

 AS SEEN IN PARENTS MAGAZINE!!!!!!! (September 2012 pg 208)

Yes, This is our second publication in a row for Parents Magazine "It Worked For Me!" We waited until the school supplies went on clearance at Staples and bought the mini composition books (2 pack for a quarter!) Then we took the page of mini versions of your pictures (typically these come when  you order online) We cut them out and glued them into the book as a mini scrapbook for the dolls.

To make the surfboard, we simply cut the bottom of a Rockstar 24 count case to the shape of a surfboard. After that I let the girls draw on Sharpie with them to make designs. They aren't as long as a typical surfboard to human ratio- but the girls are happy with them.

Next we have a kite. This was just something we bought at the dollar store (it's just a mini kite)

Last one for the day we have is a back pack

It's been a while since we made it, but here is a sketch of the  pattern. We basically used a long rectangle for the back, a square for the front, a long thin rectangle for the bottoms and sides, and a pocket. We sewed it together and made cuts in the fabric for the ribbon handles.

Open and off:


If you found these helpful, cool or funny- please follow me. I'd appreciate it. It gets a little lonely over here

Here are links to some of my other creations:
My other American Girl items:
school supplies
feel better kit  (Just like McKenna's!)
head band
Minnie Mouse ears
sleeping bags
sleeping mask
pillow dress
pet accessories.