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Number Crafts {Number SEVEN}... Lovely Love Bug

I teach a weekly class for preschoolers called "123 Learn with Me".  Each week, we learn about numbers through a variety of activities and crafts. This week, we had some fun learning about the number seven.


During our class, we did a number seven search, practiced printing the number seven, decorated a number seven, made a love bug with seven spots, and crafted a number seven headband.  You can download the full lesson plan {for free} here.

The highlight of our class was the "Love Bug" with SEVEN spots. To make your own love bug:

1) Print the template that you can find here.
2) Color the love bug.
3) Use glue to attach 7 heart-shaped spots to the wings.
4) Use glue to attach a circle-shaped head and a picture of the child.
5) Draw antennae, and attach two buttons with glue.


Cute, right?  We also made a simple number 7 headband out of card stock.  The headband is made of two inch strips of card stock taped together.  The number 7 is a circle of card stock with tissue paper squares "scrunched up" and attached with glue.


I think all of these number seven crafts and activities are adorable... but the love bug is definitely my favorite.  I am a sucker for kid crafts with pictures and/or handprints.


Isn't this a cute way to learn about the number seven?  I'll be sharing our crafts and activities for the number eight soon, so don't forget to come back and check them out.

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

DIY Teacher Gifts (he or she will love!)

The end of the school year is just around the corner, so now is the time to start planning a special "end of year" teacher gift for the special educator in your life.  Homemade cards, heartfelt notes, and gift cards are always excellent choices, but if your little one wants to see their teacher unwrap something (as my boys do), these options are pretty fun!


With a little help, kids can make a pencil holder for their teachers that is sure to brighten their day.  You can find the tutorial for this inexpensive gift here.


A tote bag is a pretty and practical gift... and extra fun if you add a "Have a 'tote'ally awesome summer!" gift tag.  You can download the tag for free here


Every teacher uses pens, and these DIY flower pens are sure to brighten his/her day.  You can find the step-by-step tutorial for making them here


This DIY candy bouquet is made from dollar store supplies and is filled with chocolatey goodness.  (This is a great alternative to flowers if your kids have a male teacher.)  You can find the step by step instructions for this tasty gift here.


Flowers are always a cheerful gift, but they are even nicer when you add a clever tag that says, "I couldn't have picked a better teacher!"  You can download this cute tag (for free) here.


A child's drawing is always a special gift.  My son used a sharpie to draw a picture of him and his teacher onto a canvas bag.  I then stitched over the design to make it permanent.  Using fabric markers instead of the sharpie and stitching would be a fantastic (and easier) alternative.  


Aren't these DIY teacher gifts adorable?  They make meaningful end of year teacher gifts, but they would work other times of year too. Do you have a favorite teacher gift to give or receive? I'm always looking for new ideas.


Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Number Crafts {Number SIX}... Pirate Adventure

I teach a weekly class for preschoolers called "123 Learn with Me". Each week, we learn about numbers through a variety of activities and crafts. This week, we had some fun learning about the number six through a "pirate" theme.


We did a number search, decorated a number six, practiced printing the number six, and did two pirate crafts.  {The entire lesson plan can be downloaded, for personal use, through the link at the bottom of this post.}

We started by crafting a pirate treasure chest with 6 white treasures and 6 blue treasures inside. {You can draw your own treasure chest, or scroll to the bottom of this post to download my template for free.}


We also read a pirate story, and crafted a simple paper roll pirate telescope.  We used duct tape at one end, and the kids colored the rest of the paper roll with crayons.


Isn't this a cute way to learn about the number six I'll be sharing our crafts and activities for the number seven soon, so don't forget to come back and check them out.


Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)


NOTE: You can download the template for the pirate treasure chest and all the number six worksheets here.

Hosting a Half Sleepover

I feel like my boys are too young for sleepovers, but that doesn't mean they have to miss out on the fun associated with this type of celebration.  Today I am sharing one of our favorite party themes, and I am giving you all the info you need to host the perfect DIY Half Sleepover.


First, you need to send out an invite that lets everyone know what to expect from a "half sleepover".  Basically, it's like a regular sleepover, but all the kids go home when it is time to go to bed. Here's the invite I made using a free photo editing software called Picmonkey.com.


Then, you need to set up a fun snack table.  We had a movie theme, so our snacks consisted of traditional movie treats.  We also shared glow sticks and mini flashlights with our guests.


You'll also need party entertainment.  We did an outdoor movie, but you could do games or crafts instead.


Finally, you need a cute party favor for your guests to take home.  We used little boxes of cereal, and we added a spoon and a simple "breakfast for tomorrow" gift tag.


To download the tags, right-click on the picture below, save it to your computer, and print it like a regular 4X6 photo.




All our guests had a great time, and everyone had a fantastic night's sleep in their own beds.  Do you have a little one that would like to host a half sleepover?  It really is an awesome party theme!


Gina (aka East Coast Mommy)

Number Crafts {Number FIVE}... Teddy Bear Picnic

I teach a weekly class for preschoolers called "123 Learn with Me". Each week, we learn about numbers through a variety of activities and crafts. This week, we had some fun learning about the number five through a "teddy bear picnic" theme.



To learn about the number five, we decorated a number five coloring sheet, did some printing practice, made some bear ears, crafted a bear puppet, and snacked on teddy bear trail mix.

To make the bear ears:

1) Download the template for the ears (here), print it onto card stock, and have the children color the ears and cut them out.
2) Cut 1" strips of paper, tape them together to form a headband, and attach the ears with glue or tape.



To make the paper bag bear puppet:

1) Download the template for the bear's ears, snout, and arms (here), print it onto card stock, and have the children color and cut out all the parts.
2) Glue all the parts to a paper bag, and add a couple of googly eyes.


To make the teddy bear trail mix:


1) Print the recipe by right-clicking on the picture below, saving it to your computer, and printing it like a regular 8X10 photo.
2) Attach the recipe to a little picnic basket (or favor box or bag), set out the ingredients, and let the kids make their own trail mix.


Isn't this a cute way to learn about the number five I'll be sharing our crafts and activities for the number six soon, so don't forget to come back and check them out.


Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)


NOTE: You can download all the templates for the bear crafts and number five worksheets here.


Simple Tips for Bookcase Styling

Recently, I set up a bookshelf in my living room, and I set about trying to make it look pretty.  I am far from a decorating expert, but I am happy with the way my bookcase turned out, and today I am sharing a few simple tips for styling a bookcase.  


My primary objective was to come up with a design that was both decorative and functional.  I used a neutral pallet of items I had around the house and added a few pops of color (turquoise).  I went for a balanced look, but I was careful not to make it too symmetrical.  Having a mix of horizontal and vertical objects is key.


On the top shelf, I made a little DIY artwork that matched my color scheme.  I bought an inexpensive frame from Walmart, and I used it to frame a piece of scrapbook paper.  I also added a matching flower pot (from the dollar store).


Another fun element of my bookshelf was a little turquoise owl that I found at Walmart.  It's always a good idea to add a touch of whimsey to a space.  This owl is called "speak no evil", and I told my boys that it is a reminder to only speak kindly to each other. We'll see if it works!  lol


Of course, practicality is always important too, so I added a covered basket to the bottom of my bookcase.  This object "grounds" my bookcase, and it gives me a clever space to hide paperwork.


As I said, I am not a decorating expert, but I hope you found these tips helpful.  Let me know your best tips for styling a bookcase.  I'd love to hear them!

♥ 
Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Number Crafts {Number FOUR}... Spring Flowers Craft

I teach a weekly class for preschoolers called "123 Learn with Me".  Each week, we learn about numbers through a variety of activities and crafts.  This week, we had some fun learning about the number four by crafting these adorable cupcake liner flowers.


Aren't they cute?  The kids were so excited to make crafts using their pictures.

To make these sweet flowers:

1) Gather up some large and small cupcake liners.
2) Glue the large liners onto a piece of cardstock.  Then, glue the smaller liners into the middles of the large liners.  Finish the "flowers" by gluing pictures of the children into the centres.
3) Draw stems and petals, scrunch up little squares of tissue paper, and use glue to cover the stems and petals with tissue paper.


To learn about the number four, we also did a number four search, colored a number four, and did some printing practice.


To download the number 4 coloring page and number search, right-click on the pictures below, save them to your computer, and print like a normal 8X10 photo.



Isn't this a cute way to learn about the number four I'll be sharing our crafts and activities for the number five soon, so don't forget to come back and check them out.


Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)
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