Friday, October 14, 2016

E is for Elevator

There aren't as many activities that spring to mind for the letter E. :) But it was nice to have a little less planned, as we had enough going on that week to keep us busy. E still had Exciting moments though! ;)

 E is for Egg hunt - I filled plastic eggs with little snacks: a few goldfish, raisins, nuts, and even a few m&ms for extra excitement. It kept Dassah busy searching and eating while I hung up a load of laundry. At first she would just open them and let the insides fall wherever, and I'd remind her to be careful... Once a prized chocolate fell in a crack and got covered in dust (thus not edible) she learned her lesson and carefully opened them over her lap from them on. ;)

Since I didn't have as many letter-related activities, I planned some simple whenever learning activities for this week. Dassah had a lot of fun adding stickers to the numbered columns. I was impressed how she counted accurately, doing it almost completely without help!

 Then she wanted to draw while I cleared up the kitchen a bit. A minute later I heard a giggle and "I drew a cute yeye (grandpa)!" I love seeing drawing ability develop!

 E is for Elevator - the biggest hit of this week. I saw this idea online, and knowing how much Dassah loves pushing elevator buttons, I thought she would enjoy it. She definitely did, and even Ellie enjoyed climbing in and out of the closet!

 When she pushed the "close door" button we'd slide the closet door shut...

 Except for a little crack, without which we couldn't see inside! Love those little fingers.

 Then the doors would open! We played this for quite a while, pushing different numbers related to our home, our friend's apartments, the outside, the basement, and making up ones for restaurants and stores We'd go out "to" the place (reading a book our friend let us borrow to "be" at their house, etc.) and then go back in for another trip!

 How did my baby get old enough to sit in little chairs at a table? Ahh... it's so fun seeing them grow up and play together though!

 E is for Eyes - so she colored her E and covered it in googly eyes! I put drops of glue on the page and left her to put the eyes on top of them.

 Since faces have eyes and ears, we pulled out the Mr. Potato Head felt I'd finally made. I downloaded the pattern from this site quite a while ago, so it was good to have a reason to cut it out!

 On Wednesday we had a friend join us again, as his mom had another prenatal appointment. They enjoyed playing playdough while I made some fun tools.

 E is for Exciting Tools! Yeah, got to stretch it a bit to make my alliterative brain happy sometimes. ;) I had also been meaning to do this for a while after seeing the idea in a book. You can take whatever you have around to hot glue to popsicle sticks. They're perfect for 2-3 year olds, as they can press them without needing help. Some of the pasta fell off, but everything else has stayed through lots of playing.

 We also made birds from paper plates and feathers in preparation for our story of Elijah the next day. It was fun to see how serious they were about picking which color feathers went where.

 A few cut out shapes and popsicle sticks kept Hadassah engaged for a while. Things don't have to be fancy! This has then gone into the box to bring to restaurants or other places she needs to sit for a while, as it's easy to set up and do wherever.

 I had labeled the shapes with the number of sides they had - 3, 4, or 5. She was concerned because we didn't have a "1" or "2" shape, so I cut out long rectangles and labeled them for her to feel she had a complete set to count. ;)

 E is for Energy! This wasn't planned, but after all that sitting, they needed to get some energy out! We couldn't go outside since it was almost time for lunch, so they raced up and down the hallways. I was proud of how careful they were of each other. This little guy is sweet to have around. He's just 4 months younger than Dassah, so they play well together and also have enough times where they have to learn to share. ;) But that too is good learning!

 Who knew a box of plastic eggs could provide so much fun? Ellie just likes sucking on them. Our little friend liked taking them apart and putting them in the basket, while Hadassah wanted to make sure the matching sides were put together. So they kept each other busy for a while!

 E is for Elephant! This page has so many cute heart animals, so I've enjoyed making them with Dassah where it corresponds to our weekly letter. The elephant one was one of my favorites. :)

E is for Explorer! Dassah was very serious in dressing up for her explorer role. :) I hid animals around the room for her to spot with her "binoculars." :)

 But our apartment has no toilet paper roll holders, so we've been using the kind they sell in kleenex type containers. But I needed a toilet paper tube for the binoculars, and had a full roll on hand, so I started unwinding it myself. But then I realized it would be so much more fun for the kids to do it! Ellie had an absolute blast, and I still saved the paper to use later, of course! ;) I didn't think it would do much harm since we have no rolls in our own home for her to want to unroll. But since she has tried hard to get to any roll she sees in a public restroom - though ones that actually have toilet paper here in China are rare! Pretty much only the ones in nice hotels do...

 I gave Dassah a few hints about where animals were hidden if she got stuck. This was an activity she really enjoyed :)

 Especially when I let her climb up on the couch! ;)

 She wanted to give Ellie a turn with the binoculars too! Dassah has her moments for sure of being selfish, but overall God has given her a generous heart and it always makes me so happy when she wants to share fun things with her sister. One of the reasons I am planning weekly activities is to make sure there are times I'm there encouraging them and guiding them in sweet play together. I can see a difference when I do.

 We're working on cutting with scissors these day too. Something finally clicked with Dassah this week, and she got it. Before she would try to cut with both hands and just didn't enjoy when I'd try to have her use one. But now she can cut with one hand and hold the paper with the other!

 She also loves to use tape. So I put the pieces she cut to form a little e and big E for her to tape down. Kept her busy and happy! Another time she wanted another do-a-dot activity, so I drew shapes with numbers 1-5 for her to put that many dots inside of the shape. She did with with dot markers and then went through again and dotted with a regular marker. :)

 We finally did our E for Elijah Bible story acting too. :) Here Dassah went to "hide" down by the brook Kidron. :)
Her favorite part by far was when the birds came to feed her goldfish crackers. :) Dassah never turns down an opportunity to eat! Oh - didn't even realize when I was typing that, but E is for Eat after all! ;)

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