Childcare Chronicles

We’ve been a busy bunch at childcare.  We haven’t been outside quite as much.  We’ve had several rainy and dreary days.  The sun doesn’t come out and dry the rain from the overnight so the little ones get too wet so…inside we are.  But if we’re inside, we’ve been doing some activities.

My three preschool (Wednesday only) girls are busy.

We had a big apple testing tasting and deciding what colors of apples are the tastiest.

This was a finger paint project.  To get the colors we did some color mixing….yellow was with white….red was red, white and pink…green was green, white and yellow.   Color mixing is always fun.

I had cut the apples out of the black paper.  Then we taped the finger painted papers to the back.

The construction vehicle below have been a huge hit.  These from Amazon.


Then I went to Dollar Tree and got a couple bags of decorative rocks.  I put them in trays.

It’s like personal sensory tables for the kiddos.  Being I have four boys all around Carver’s age, this has been a HUGE hit.  If you have a little grandchild, I highly recommend this!!  They need to be past the age of putting things in their mouth though.  Carver is two and will honestly sit for 25 minutes playing this…and be back a half hour later to play again.

Another fun thing I recently did was buy this set from Amazon too.  The kids have liked them.

They became a whole lot more popular after I took some eye screws and screwed them into some wine bottle corks.

The corks are the perfect size for objects to manipulate with the vehicles.  Corks aren’t heavy so they work great.  Carver loves them.  You can see him playing in the photo below….


I recommend these toys too…but the eye screws and corks are a must.  I’m looking for more corks for another project.  If anyone has some they want to part with, think of me….please??

I bought this kitchen at a garage sale and set it up down in the basement.  It’s been a hit.  Our basement isn’t finished yet.  I’m campaigning but until we get a few other things done around here, it won’t happen…in the meantime, we’re having fun with what is in the basement.

My $1 box of blocks came outside on the porch and the kids have recently started playing with them.  I was going to get rid of them as no one played with them…Nope.  I’m keeping them.  I think the kids were too young for them before.

The neighbors tarred their driveway.  The kids were completely entertained by the skid loader, dump truck and roller.  They spent lots of time watching out the window over the course of two days.

One day we made popcorn.  These two wanted to watch.  They were fascinated and giggling and giggling as it popped.

They attracted so much attention that before long, the whole crew was out to watch the airpopper pop corn.

Sometimes, it amazes me what is passing as new generations come.  Popcorn popping to me was always seen.  As a small child it was mom popping corn in a pan on the stove.  We could see the corn lift the lid off the pan as it popped.  Later as a teen, we had an air popper.  Nowdays, kids only have microwave popcorn.  Happily Kayla had gifted me some popcorn on the cob so we ended up with a whole lesson on popcorn.  They thought is was so funny that we were eating “exploded seeds”.

Another awesome thing I started doing that is EASY is cooking carrots in the Instant Pot for the kiddos for lunch.  They do a great job eating cooked carrots and the Instant Pot with water in the bottom.  Manual pressure for 4 minutes and easy peasy.  Add a little butter and the kiddos love me.

I’ve been working really hard to keep food as fresh I can for the kiddos.  I’m not a freak about processed food, but if we can avoid as much as we can, I think that’s best.

Things have settled down a lot for me.  In last week’s Childcare Chronicles I likely sounded pretty stressed.  I was.  I feel so much better now.  No amount of guilt or money is worth feeling stressed when taking care of the kiddos.  I’m so much more patient and so much more happy.  It was what I needed to do even if was uncomfortable.  Now I need to remember this and not book so heavy.  For me, over the school year, less is definitely MORE!!

So that’s this edition…I’d love any ideas anyone has for some fun play ideas for the kids like the construction vehicle and rocks or the corks and eye screws.  The kids love these non-traditional ways to play.

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7 thoughts on “Childcare Chronicles

  1. Cindi

    Hammering golf tees into Styrofoam is fun. You need big pieces, like the kind that is used for shipping large items, and wooden hammers. Not as noisy as the little work bench with the different colored pegs.

  2. Cynthia

    My local ECFE had a winter party and they rubber banded wax paper over the kids socks and they would “skate” on the carpet. They enjoyed that.

  3. Karin

    I just saw a game where you rolled dice, and for each number, 1 thru 12, there was an associated action on a pumpkin. For instance, roll a 1 you drew an eye on your pumpkin, roll a 2, you drew a mouth, 3, you drew an ear on someone else’s pumpkin…roll a 10, you could skip a turn, etc, all the way to 12. First one to complete their pumpkin face ‘wins.’

  4. Martha

    Jo, you always fascinate me with your ideas for the kiddos.. and I know they love it all. With our 11 grandkids and our 17 great grandkids and 2 on the way; I sometimes pass your ideas along. Surely hope you don’t mind and I always give you the credit and kudos. I am a quilter and love your ideas and patterns. Am also teaching my daughter to quilt and she is truly an artist with fabric; and loves crafting. I am of a family of 12 sibs with 3 sisters – who love getting together when possible since we all live in different states. So your family closeness is something I love. Love your blog and is first on my daily reading list. Love your kindness in reaching out to others with your quilt donations and ministry.

  5. Kim LeMere

    Jo, you are so clever with your child care kids, love the idea with corks. I will be sending some your way next week. Isn’t it interesting how the kids love watching popcorn pop, I also do mine with an air popper.

  6. Roberta Campbell

    I’m long past small kiddos but do love to read of your creative & fun “teaching times”
    for your crew. Keep going & keep loving the younguns’ they are indeed our future.

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