Adventures of the Non-Creative Mom

April 2, 2012

Upcycling Magnet Play

Both my 4 year old and my 20 month old love playing with magnets so I was trying to think of something new for them to play with and remembered this pin from Pinterest. It’s been something I’ve been wanting to do but I’ve been too cheap to go buy magnets.  So instead I decided to try and upcycle some old magnets from refrigerator magnets that broke and those old calendar magnets we get from realtors.  I also had a bunch of left over craft items so I pulled out the glue gun, let my daughter pick out what she wanted on each piece of magnet and we went at it creating snowflakes, fuzz balls, pipe cleaner magnets, etc.

Then we needed something for the kids to put the magnets on.  I had cleaned out a couple cans of Campbell’s soup, pinched down the sharp edges and then covered them up with electrical tape just to be extra safe.  I let my daughter pick the colors and make designs using the tape.

My son didn’t quite get the concept of putting the magnets on the cans and kept putting them inside the cans (possibly because most of these upcycled magnets weren’t very strong and wouldn’t stick once you moved the cans around) so I pulled out this magnetic board.

Of course both kids had to have a flat board to play out so I dug out a cookie sheet as well.

While the kids were playing I cut out some pieces of construction paper thinking they could play chicka chicka boom boom since we also have some magnetic letters.

But my daughter proved more creative and started making her own creatures standing in the snow.

And here she created a “monster” and started reciting Go Away, Big Green Monster.  I wish I got a picture of her entire monster but she was too quick.

All in all the kids had a blast but next time I should definitely invest in stronger magnets so they wouldn’t keep sliding off the cans.

November 2, 2011

Go Away, Big Green Monster by Ed Emberley + Felt Activity

We borrowed this book countless numbers of times from the library and I finally got tired of having to request it and having my daughter ask every day if it had arrived yet so I bought a copy for her.  It’s a great book for those with little ones that are afraid of monsters which my daughter has started lately during bed time.  Each page has a die cut of a different feature of the monster’s face until you built the entire face and then you start telling the scraggly purple hair, sharp white teeth, etc to go away until you finally send the entire monster away and tell it to not come back “until I say so!”.  Kaitlyn loves reading it and it never fails to gain a giggle.  Still we were having trouble with her fear of monsters at night so I was debating what could I do to help.

I came across this post on Pinterest that had a pattern for making your own cut out of the big green monster and thought it would be a great activity for Kaitlyn.  Fortunately I had left over pieces of felt from when I made her turtle and hedgehog pillows that I could use for this activity.  It worked out great!  She had so much fun putting together the face.

Then she made the face go away:

And then we had some fun building our own monster faces with freckles, necklaces, red hair, drooling purple mouth, etc. and telling all of them to go away.

This was a wonderful activity that kept her busy and let her use her imagination to create whatever she wanted over and over with no waste unlike stickers or gluing scraps of paper together.  I’ve stored the pieces in a baggie to pull out for her.  In fact I think it would make a great busy bag to take to a restaurant or other places that I need to keep her occupied.

The best part was at bed time we went over if she thought she saw any monsters what was she supposed to do?  Tell them to go away and don’t come back!  Actually acting out the book added this whole new level of depth to the concept and seemed to sink in for her.