Activities for Z week

Given the proximity to Christmas, and the fact that Blossom was already on holidays, our activities for Z week actually took place in spits and spurts over a number of weeks.  Nevertheless, here’s how we filled the final scrapbook page.

Z is for zebra

It’s an obvious link, with potential for a variety of activities.

Cartoon clay

Thinking that Z would be a difficult letter, I’d bought a cartoon clay kit earlier in the year.

Modelling a zebra for z week with your preschooler

While Bud attempted to fashion a zebra from the black and white clay provided, Blossom made her own using modelling clay.

activities for z week

Enhanced fine motor skills aside, the modelling clay was easier to work with and Blossom was pretty happy with her sculpture, although getting it to stand up for a photo was nigh impossible :-).

using modelling clay for fun and fine motor skill


The cartoon clay, on the other hand, was quite spongy and resisted sticking together.  Bud gave up before producing anything that looked particularly zebra like.


3D zoo cookies

Knowing I would soon be looking for activities for Z week, a friend offered to lend me a 3D zoo cookie cutter set.

Fun cooking with kids

There were body and leg cutters for making giraffes, hippos, tigers, elephants and, of course, zebras.

Cutting out giraffe cookies


The whole process was rather involved, but it was holiday time, so not a bad way to spend a day and an activity that all of the kids could be involved in.

Cooking with kids

Portions of dough were dyed different colours using food colouring, and multiple icing colours were also required.

Coloured cookie dough for making zoo animals

Transferring the dough to a baking tray was definitely an adult task, and even then required a good deal of patience.

Making zebra cookies for z week

Once baked, the kids enjoyed piping on the stripes, following the marks made by the cookie cutters.

Adding piping to cookies - a great pre-writing activity for preschoolers

Gluing it all together with icing was yet another challenge.  They don’t quite look like the box, but here are our best.

3D zebra cookie constructed for z week

Fun baking with kids

And it goes without saying that the ones we didn’t manage to stand up, still tasted just as good :-).


Toilet roll craft

If you’re after something a little simpler, I’ve seen some super cute toilet paper roll zebra crafts on Pinterest.  Here’s a simple one from DLTK-Kids which includes printable templates.

Or if you can read German (or work out the process from the pictures), this is my personal favourite from EXPLI.


Z is for zoo

Not living particularly close to a zoo, we had to fit this in when we were able to be in a suitable city.  For Blossom, it was when we were passing through Adelaide on holidays a couple of months before we got to Z week.

Visiting a zoo for Z week

For Bud, it was a planned trip to Sydney a few weeks after we’d finished up our program.

Zebras and zoos for z week

Visiting the zoo as part of the activities for z week


Z is for zig-zag

I tended to have my sewing out more frequently when I had only two children and didn’t have to fit into a school routine.  So with Blossom it seemed quite natural to produce some zig-zag samples together on the machine.

activities for z week with your preschooler

With Bud, the plan was to unwind a roll of paper across a length of floor and draw on zig-zag tracks to race some cars along.  It’s a great way to practice some fine motor control – children are required to keep within the lines or get disqualified (if that type of competitiveness is helpful in your household).  In the end, this activity got lost in the pre-Christmas busyness, but I still think it worthwhile enough to direct you to it.  Find pictures and comments at Brilliant Beginnings Preschool.


In closing

As it was with Blossom, this year has been a fun one.  Committing to this program was helpful for me.  It ensured that my intentions to do a variety of fun things with my kids became reality.

Thanks for sharing the journey with me.

Once Bud has settled into school, I’ll be back with a new focus and activities that are relevant to Petal, my then 3 year old.

Hope to connect with you soon,


Make the letter Z

There’s a reason why I planned for my ‘Beginning Sounds’ program to finish early in December, before the silly season really hits and Blossom finishes up at school for the year.  Setbacks earlier in the term, however, put us out of kilter and we haven’t really managed to get back into the groove.  Nevertheless, this is a project I’m not happy to leave dangling, so we’re finishing up as best we can at this time of year.

My mother grew up at a time when, as her brother put it, salvaging items that could still serve a purpose wasn’t called ‘recycling’, it was a way of life.  As a result, my sewing box contains numerous zippers she’d cut or unpicked from clothing that had worn out.  I’ve even been known to add to the collection occasionally, and have reused a few in making pencil cases and travel bags.  To make the letter Z, I pulled out about 10 such reclaimed zips and got Bud thinking about how he could use them to construct this week’s focus letter.  I started with how many straight lines are needed to make the letter Z.  He selected 3 zips and laid them out like so.

using reclaimed materials as learning aides.

I commended him for his effort and the features he got right.  Then I showed him a letter Z from the NSW Foundation Style writing guide (since that’s what he’ll be learning next year) and asked him if he could improve on his first attempt.  He promptly selected three more zips, this time shorter and roughly the same size.

A trial and improvement activity for preschoolers or emerging writers.

We compared this attempt with the handwriting guide, and determined that the longest zip should be used for the diagonal stroke.  So he now had to compare the relative lengths and order them accordingly.  I love how this became a trial and improvement task with other learning activities embedded within it.

Early numeracy with preschoolers

There was one more thing before securing the zips to the page.  I wanted him to be able to ‘unzip’ in the order that he would make pencil strokes when writing the letter Z.  Hence we needed to think about the orientation of each zipper.  You could, incidentally, make a case for starting with the zips open and ‘zipping up’ in the order needed to make the letter.  In that case you’d choose the opposite orientation to what I’ve shown.

Make the letter Z with your preschooler

Finally, we chose to glue the zips onto a piece of paper which will eventually make its way into Bud’s scrapbook.  Sewing them onto a piece of scrap fabric would also fit the brief, and you could even add in some zigzag stitching :-).

Attach zippers to paper using PVA glue


Coming up this week

I still plan for our year to culminate with a trip to the zoo, but that may not happen this week.  In the meantime, zebra crafts and zoo animal biscuits are definitely on the agenda.

Activities for Y week

Our activities for Y week involved two episodes of experimenting in the kitchen, and a classic dice game.


Y is for yeast

I regularly make bread and pizza bases in our breadmaker.  I’ve involved Bud before in measuring out and adding the ingredients but this week I made a point of demonstrating the function of yeast in dough.

activating yeast

Using instant yeast, it is not necessary to activate it and thus it’s usually added on the top as the last ingredient and all the magic happens under the closed lid of the breadmaker.  For this week’s pizza dough, we made the process a little more visual.  We began with warm water, added the yeast and let it sit.  My standard pizza dough recipe doesn’t call for sugar, but I added a small amount on this occasion to help the yeast along.  Within a few minutes, this

yeast and water before activation really beginshad turned to this

activated yeast

Bud enjoyed watching the ‘fireworks’ exploding and rising to the surface.

We added the remainder of the ingredients and let the machine do the rest of the work.  For contrast, however, I made a small quantity of dough without the yeast, keeping everything else in equal proportions to the regular recipe.

We noted that the regular dough increased in size significantly,

dough grown by yeast

fully proved dough

while the yeast-free ball remained, well, a ball.

After the bases were rolled, topped and cooked, Bud again made observations about the soft, spongy thick crust and the thin, crunchy yeast-free crust.  I love my kids knowing about what’s in their food.

science experiments in the kitchen


Y is for yoghurt

Essentially still looking at the role of micro-organisms in food, we next made natural yoghurt.  I generally make yoghurt from a premixed sachet – all I have to do is add water and shake; it’s super easy.  For the sake of going through the process, however, I took a small amount from a previous batch and used it as a starter culture for the tub we made together.

preschoolers in the kitchen

The activity involved measuring, mixing, heating and cooling to a prescribed temperature.  The highly-rated recipe we followed requires the use of a yoghurt maker or a wide-mouthed thermos flask.  If you don’t have one of these, but do happen to own a slow cooker, here’s a method for making yoghurt in a crock pot.  Either way, it’s pretty cool to see liquid go in,

activities for y week

and thick creamy yoghurt come out 8 hours later.

Thick natural homemade yoghurt

Bud was less taken by this than he had been by the yeast ‘fireworks’ (his words).  Nevertheless, he was keen to check it at the 8 hour mark (perhaps a way of procrastinating bedtime ;)) and, while he generally steers clear of my ‘sour yoghurt’, he happily consumed a bowl of the yoghurt he’d made at breakfast the next day.

Activities for y week preschool

Involving kids in food preparation is a great way to get them to try new things.


Y is for Yahtzee

If the letter y had occurred earlier in the year, I probably wouldn’t have attempted Yahtzee.  But given Bud’s development in number skills and his ability to grasp basic game rules, I thought it was worth a go.  We collected five dice from various board games, took a cup from the kitchen cupboard and printed off free Yahtzee score sheets.

activities for y week with your preschooler

Learning the game was one thing.  Calculating scores was a challenge, but with help that was achievable.  Writing the scores into the score sheet was possibly the most time consuming part of the game for Bud.  I’ve got to give it to him for effort.  We hadn’t done much number printing practice in quite a while, the space he had to write in was smaller than he’d usually be required to print and we were dealing with 2-digit numbers.  Needless to say, we didn’t finish the game in one sitting.  If you’re more interested in fun than you are in exercising mathematical and writing skills, playing a free online version would be a quicker option.


Coming up

Our final week of this program will see us zig-zaging down the hallway and visiting zebras at the zoo.


Make the letter Y

Yellow and yarn were the best I could come up with for making the letter Y.  My kids generally think of all materials for knitting and crocheting as ‘wool’ rather than the more general term of ‘yarn’ so Y week was a good time to educate them.  Blossom and I unravelled a never-to-be-completed mini knitting project to access some yellow yarn for her letter construction, hence the copious curls.

introducing the letter y to preschoolers

The yarn I had for Bud was unused and therefore straight.  We could have laid multiple threads on our letter Y template to flesh it out, but I set he and I a challenge by deciding to add some loops.  I thought a largish crocheting hook may be easier to manipulate than two knitting needles, so that’s where we started.  Naturally Bud did require a lot of assistance, and it’s fairly apparent which stitches I was demonstrating and which he was attempting himself.  Nevertheless, by the time we got to the end of the chain, he had a reasonable grasp of the steps.

Single chain crocheting, preschool style

After a break, I suggested he might prefer finger knitting, since it doesn’t require controlling an additional implement.  Bud managed a few stitches, again with help, but ended up dropping and unravelling most of them, so opted to go back to the hook.

activities with yarn for preschoolers

To ease the pain and speed up the project, we completed the lowercase letter y as a yellow collage.  I set out ribbons, foam shapes, stickers and an array of paper scraps in various shades of yellow.

make the letter y for preschool

A little cutting, a little glue and the letter y was complete.

teaching the letter y to preschoolers

And just for the record, when we stick this into Bud’s scrapbook, we will separate the upper and lowercase letters and place them at their correct relative heights :).


Coming up this week

The letter Y will have us experimenting in the kitchen with yeast and yoghurt and we’ll try to throw a Yahtzee during game time.

Activities for X week

The letter X occurs much more commonly at the end of a word or syllable than it does as a beginning sound.  In fact, my Australian Pocket Oxford Dictionary contains less than ten entries for words beginning with the letter X, so one has to get creative in selecting activities for X week.  Reading Fox in Socks by Dr. Seuss with your preschooler may be more appropriate for teaching the sound that X commonly makes.  Nevertheless, in addition to our tour of the X-ray clinic, here’s what we got up to during X week.


X is for xylophone

Instead of having a play on our questionably tuned toy xylophones, we took a page from Play At Home Mom LLC and made our own glow-in-the-dark water xylophone.  All you need are a few good sized drinking glasses and an equal number of glow stick bracelets.

To make a water xylophone, place increasing quantities of water in 5 or 6 glasses.  I used a set of 6 hi ball glasses, hoping that they would be similar enough to all give roughly the same note when empty.  Unfortunately, this was not the case.  Slight variations in glass thickness and shape produced a fairly wide range of sounds, but I don’t think it really detracted from Bud’s experience.

Just for the exercise of measuring and counting, Bud and I used syringes to fill each glass with a measured, sequential amount of water.  We stepped from 50mL to 300mL in 50mL increments.  As I said, this was purely to add a mathematical dimension to the activity; I don’t in any way believe this brought us closer to producing a musical scale than we would have achieved by just pouring water in and eye-balling the steps.

Early numeracy combined with science and music

We had a play around, tapping the glasses with a wooden stick and enjoying the sounds.  We briefly discussed how the differing amounts of water influenced the pitch while also noting that hitting different parts of the glass produced different sounds.

activities for x week with your preschooler

But what Bud was really keen to do was to make it glow.  Given that it’s not dark until after bedtime at present, we had to opt for a dark room rather than a dark time of day.  Fortunately for this activity, we now have a bathroom with no natural light penetration, and Bud was quick to suggest this was where we should take the glasses.

glow in the dark water xylophone

We added a glow stick bracelet to each glass and, as suggested by Play at Home Mom, used a glow stick to tap with.  I confess I did spend the whole time we were in the bathroom paranoid that Petal was going to knock a glass over and break it on the tile floor or against the side of the bath.  I placed them on a thin bathmat to provide some cushioning while trying not to compromise on stability and, in the end, I returned six glasses to the kitchen cupboard and resumed normal breathing.

And I have to admit, a glow-in-the-dark xylophone is way cooler than tapping glasses with a stick in the kitchen :).

fun activities with glow sticks


X is for xylem

I have my doubts that Bud will remember this word, but as another activity for x week, we examined the way water moves up through the xylem in the stem of a plant.  I explained that just as we have ‘pipes’ in our body (called arteries and veins) to carry our blood around, plants have ‘pipes’ called xylem to transport water up their stems.  And we can observe this by placing a stem in coloured water.

We set up two cups (I could use plastic for this one, phew), one with red food colouring and one with blue.  The stronger you make your colour, the more readily you’ll be able to observe the effect.  Into each cup we placed a stalk of celery with leaves still attached, which we then checked every couple of hours.

science experiments for preschoolers

Within a few hours, some spots of colour could be seen on the leaves.  By the next day, this was significantly stronger although in our case the blue was much more readily detectable than the red.

activities for x week

I sliced through the stem at a couple of intervals as well, revealing the separate coloured ‘tubes’.

activities for x week with your preschooler

experiment for observing water transport in plants

We also experimented with some white flowers growing in the garden we inherited when we purchased this property.

preschool science experiments

Again, within a fairly short time, tinges of blue could be seen on the petals of the flower in blue water.  We went away for the weekend, however, and when we got back the heads had shrivelled and dropped off.  While I could certainly see more blue streaks on the petals, they were way beyond photographing.  A longer lasting flower would be a better choice.


Coming up

We’re almost at the end of the alphabet, heading next to the letter Y and a ball of yellow yarn.


Make the letter X

My husband is a radiographer, so that puts us at an advantage when it comes to tackling the letter X.  When it was Blossom’s turn, we took some spare X-ray images from his university days and cut them into strips to form the upper and lowercase X’s.  Obviously no light could pass through the film once they were glued into her scrapbook, however, and we were left with what looks like solid black plastic on the page.  This was not surprising, but I did find it a little disappointing.

From Blossom's scrapbook

I was pretty sure we could do better second time around, so we visited Dad at work just before closing time when things were pretty quiet.

X-RAY Clinic

Clearly he wasn’t going to X-ray the children, and technically he’s not allowed to X-ray inanimate objects so we couldn’t set up a nuts-and-bolts X to image.

X-ray cassette ready for test exposures to produce the letter X (the kids left the room before the exposure was taken :))

What he could do, though, were some test exposures.  And if you do two on the same film going diagonally across the X-ray cassette, you end up with this.

Make the letter X using X-rays

It’s naturally best on the light box as shown here, but still has clear definition in the scrapbook too.

Coming home with an X was not enough for my husband though.  He was enjoying giving the kids some insight into what he does all day, so took them on an excursion around the X-ray rooms.  They lined up their heads within an OPG machine (used for dental X-rays),

X is for X-rays

tried on some protective lead in the screening room,

On tour of the X-ray rooms - protective lead in the screening room

each had a turn at being strapped to the CT Scanner

On tour of the X-ray rooms - strapped to the CT tableOn tour of the X-ray rooms - strapped to the X-ray table

and finished the tour with a cool X-ray sticker.  What a Dad!! 🙂

X-RAYS are cool sticker


I recognise that this is not an easily repeatable activity for those who are not on intimate terms with someone employed in medical imaging.  If that describes you, but you like the idea of using X-ray images to make the letter X, here is my cut-and-stick alternative.  Print out an X-ray image of a pair of hands, such as the one found here.  Explain to your child that X-rays are used to take pictures of the bones inside your body and help them identify some of the bones in their own hands which correspond to what they can see in the image.  Then take a pair of scissors to your print out, cutting the fingers and metacarpals (hand bones) into separate strips.

Make the letter X with your preschooler

Stick four of the longer fingers into an uppercase letter X shape, and cross two of the shorter finger images into a lowercase letter x.  And continue to live your life in such a way that you avoid visits to X-ray clinics as much as possible ;).

Make the letter X with X-ray images


Coming up this week

We’ll have a go at a glow in the dark xylophone and stick some celery stalks in coloured water to observe the action of xylem in the stem.

Activities for W week

W is for water beads

My kids had all played with water beads before, but they hadn’t been ones we’d hydrated.  In readiness for this week, I ordered some water beads and slow grow animals.  Beginning with small hard beads the size of a pearl pinhead and ending up with soft, slippery marble sized spheres is a worthwhile exercise in and of itself, to say nothing of how amazing the beads are to play with.

It’s an exercise in patience while also having elements of a science experiment.

Science experiments with preschoolers

Hydrating water beads

Growing water beads in readiness for sensory play

Fully hydrated water beads

Once fully hydrated, drain off the water and let the kids get their hands in.  You’ll want to have a go too – there’s something about their feel that is quite appealing.

Sensory play with water beads

Once the novelty of immersing their hands in the beads has worn off, add some scoops and other props to encourage transferring and other related skills.

After school, Blossom became involved and it soon became a strategy game, collecting and organising them into colour groups.  I didn’t quite understand the rules of her game, but Bud and Petal were happy enough to play along, at least for a few minutes.

Water beads are an activity that needs to be planned for; several hours will expire between setting them in water and exhausting all the play possibilities.  But in the end, it’s a relatively inexpensive way to engage your children in something a little bit different with multiple play and learning opportunities.



W is for water play

Set up some water play for your children this week, whatever that looks like at your house.

Activities for w week with your preschooler

It could be a water table filled with paddle wheels, scoops and boats.  Perhaps bowls and colanders from the kitchen cupboard stacked up in a tray to produce an interesting fountain when water is poured on from above.  It could be a water pistol/soaker battle in the backyard or playing in the lawn sprinkler.  And if it’s not particularly summery for your w week, extra play time in the bath with some variants on the usual bath toys could be another option worth considering.



W is for woollen web

Cut a frame from a sheet of sturdy cardstock.  If your card is too flimsy, it will tend to buckle when criss-crossing the wool, which could lead to some frustration.  Use a single hole punch to create threading holes around the frame.

Craft activities for w week

Give your preschooler some wool and let them thread randomly from side to side to create a unique web design.  We used white wool, since it was an activity for w week, and backed it with black paper for contrast, revealing something akin to a shimmering spider web.  Adding a large hairy (crafted) spider is entirely optional :).

P1020932 (800x586)



W is for wombat

We happen to have a number of books that feature wombats.  This week seemed a good time to revisit a few of those stories.  I’m certain you wouldn’t have to look too far to find an accompanying wombat craft if you choose.

activities for w week



W is for ‘Where’s Wally?’

As well as being a screen-free way to keep a child occupied for a period of time, ‘Where’s Wally?’ and other ‘seek it out’ type books are great for developing the eye tracking skills necessary for reading.  There are multiple layers of challenge on each page.  The first time through, a child may choose to simply find Wally in each scene.  On additional ‘readings’, they may find all five key characters, then the accessories.  Once your child becomes a competent reader, they can then search for the items listed in the back that are particular to each scene.

Pre-reading exercises for preschoolers

While it’s certainly true that some children will engage more with this type of activity than others, ‘Where’s Wally?’ books are likely to be revisited multiple times over a number of years of development, making them a worthy investment.



W is for ‘What’s the time Mr Wolf?’

‘What’s the time Mr Wolf’ was a favourite backyard game in our family for quite some time.  We’ve played it less in recent months, but as Petal’s ability to count individual steps improves, it may again gain popularity.  If it’s been awhile, dust off this old classic so to speak, and play ‘What’s the time Mr Wolf?’ with a group of friends.



Coming up

Next week takes us to potentially the hardest letter in the alphabet, the letter x.  X-rays and xylophones here we come.




Make the letter W

One of the invisible ink techniques we didn’t do for short i week was especially reserved for the letter W.  This week we used wax and water colours to make our upper and lowercase focus letter.

Take a utility candle and use the wax to write onto a sheet of white paper.  The letters will be virtually invisible.

Invisible ink technique using wax and watercolours

Paint over the image with fairly thin water colours and the writing magically appears.

preschool art techniques

In addition to revealing secret messages, this technique can obviously be used for other designs.  The thicker and more solid you can make the wax line, the better it will stand out once painted over.  You may also find that darker paint colours provide greater contrast to the wax and will thus show up better.

Making the letter w

Bud wrote his upper and lowercase letter W without any assistance by copying from a handwriting guide.  Having some feint ruled lines is preferable when children are learning to write as it gives a way of gauging the relative height of the different components of each letter.  That didn’t fit with this exercise, however, and is not really the point of the Beginning Sounds program.  You will obviously decide what expectations will be appropriate for your child and how much assistance you wish to give them.


Coming up this week

We’ve been looking forward to playing with water beads for a while now, so this is the week to make that happen.  And Bud’s already got his nose lost in a ‘Where’s Wally’ book.

Activities for V week

V is for vegetable printing

Collect trimmings or discarded pieces of vegetables and add paint for some fun vegetable printing.

V is for vegetable printing

I cut the top of a carrot and also cut a section of the tip in half lengthwise to provide different shapes.  I kept a floret each of broccoli and cauliflower from a previous meal and donated half an onion to the cause, but all other pieces were off-cuts so there was minimal food wastage with this project.

Activities for v week with your preschooler

As Blossom’s had been, Bud’s first page consisted of random stampings of vegetables in different colours.

Vegetable printing

Vegetable printing

When he stamped an onion on his next page, however, I suggested it could be the head of a vegetable person.  Bud immediately engaged in creating pictures, carefully choosing the most appropriate shape for each component of each image.  The corn was mostly used as a roller to fill in larger areas, and the broccoli became more of a brush than a recognisable vegetable print.  Good thing there are no rules for creative expression.

Painting with vegetables

activities for v week with your preschooler

V is for vegetable printing


V is for volcano

It is possible to purchase volcano kits to which you add basic household chemicals to simulate a volcanic eruption.  There is also the possibility of constructing the whole thing yourself with items rescued from your recycling bin.

Construct a model volcano from round recyclables

Over a number of days, I collected round(ish) containers.  When it came time to build, we experimented with a variety of combinations, eventually deciding on this for our basic shape.

Model volcano scaffold made from recyclable materials

Once stuck together, I cut a large cereal box and folded it around the plastic scaffold.  I wanted to create a basically cone-shaped surface strong enough to hold up under the next layers.  There are, no doubt, many ways this could be achieved, using whatever materials you have on hand.

Put a cardboard cover over the plastic scaffold to give shape and support to your volcano structure

I debated between plaster of paris and paper mache as the outer covering, in the end opting for the latter.  I’d made a paper mache pig with Blossom as part of her activities for p week, but it turned into a month long process as she lost interest after the first day of newspaper layering.  With the structure we had for the volcano, however, it was able to be finished in one setting which was much more achievable.

V is for volcano - a model to make with your preschooler

Once dry, Bud chose brown and orange paints, and insisted on painting the whole thing himself as he knew exactly what he wanted it to look like.

Paint the finished volcano model in earthy tones


V is for vinegar

Obviously we weren’t going to stop at just making a model volcano.  I’d chosen a vitamin container as the top piece for the structure so that it could safely contain the necessary chemicals for our volcanic eruption.

Science fun for preschoolers

While a chemist friend did suggest some more spectacular reactions, we were content with a bicarb soda and vinegar fountain spewing from our crater.  Initially we crumbled in some bicarb soda and poured in the vinegar.

Use a funnel to pour vinegar into the recepticle in your volcano model

This produced the same reaction as we’d experimented with early in the year when we’d looked at A is for acid.

V is for volcano

For our second eruption, we added some liquid water colour to tinge the spewing bubbles orange.

Preschool science experiment

And finally, we attempted to multiply the frothing effect by adding some dishwashing liquid.

Science fun with your preschooler

I then let Bud and Petal have a bit of freedom, topping up whichever reactants they felt we needed more of.  In the end, they had so much liquid on the mat that I transferred it to the grass and, with the detergent present, it became a slip and slide.  Having fun was the main goal though, right?

Incidentally, we did briefly discuss the ways in which our simulation differed from the reaction inside a real volcano, but agreed that it was still fun and looked pretty cool.


V is for veil

I don’t recall how the idea arose, but one of the activities for V week with Blossom had her modelling mine and my mum’s wedding veils.

Blossom modelling her Grandmother's veil

And of course, Bud couldn’t be left out of that sort of fun.  His photo also made it into Blossom’s scrapbook for that week.

Bud had to have a turn with the veil too


V is for vacuuming

The plan was to get Bud behind the vacuum cleaner as part of his activities for V week.  He jumped my gun, volunteering to vacuum around the table early in the week before we’d even made the letter V.  When I asked if I could get a photo as this was a cool thing to do on V week, he happily agreed to vacuum the rest of the carpeted floors as well.  What a champ!

Activities for v week

It wasn’t until I’d taken the photo that I realised he was wearing a Vancouver t-shirt, a gift from his Canadian cousins.  Double V, without even planning it; doubly happy with that :-).


Coming up

Next week our focus is on the letter w, with water play sure to feature on the hot days that have been forecast.




Make the letter V

This week we worked with Velcro and velvet, a combination only brought together by the letter V.

For this project, we required a letter V template, a length of self-adhesive Velcro and some scraps of velvet.

Make the letter V from velvet and Velcro

The first step is to trim the Velcro to fit the Vv template. Getting the length right is not difficult, but trimming the ends to get them angled correctly is more of a challenge.  While he was very keen to try, Bud found cutting through the layers of Velcro to be quite tricky so I did need to assist with most of the trimming.  We chose to use the loops on the paper and hooks on the velvet; either way would work but it’s probably best to be consistent across all pieces.

V is for velcro

Once the loop pieces are trimmed and in place on the paper template, take the backing off the hooked strips and secure them to the velvet. This gives rigidity to the fabric, allowing you to cut it to the right size with relative ease.

Alphabet fun for preschoolers

Use the magic of Velcro to hold the velvet onto the template.

Learning letters through multi-sensory activities

And there you have it, a soft, rich velvet V that can be pulled off and reattached as many times as your preschooler desires.

Make the letter V a multi-sensory activity

A word of warning: the hook and loop fastening of the Velcro forms a bond that is stronger than the force required to rip paper.  If your kids, like mine, are fascinated by pulling the strips on and off, you may want to secure your template onto something stronger than paper.  There are rips in Blossom’s scrapbook, and Bud’s template got ripped before even making it to his.  Nothing that can’t be fixed with glue and sticky tape, but something that could be prevented with a little foresight ;-).


Coming up this week

We make a model volcano, do some vegetable printing and I’m looking forward to Bud helping with the vacuuming :-).