I love to do crafts and have cute handouts and activities for church (and school, and friends, and - well you get the idea). I don't consider myself creative, but often use the help of others' talents. I decided to share what I'm doing for others just like me. It may be a link to where I found something or it might even be something *I* created. Right now I work as a paraprofessional at my kids' elementary - in special ed (autism). I started creating items for my 3rd graders this year and can't wait to share them with you. I am the 1st counselor in YW (first time in YW is this past year). I also have ideas for cub scouts and sunbeams posted, my previous callings.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Bear Cub Scout Achievement 8f (and start to 1b)

Bear Cub Requirement 8f:
  • Start your own history: keep a journal for 2 weeks.
If you are LDS you can also use this as part of Requirement 1b and also make a list of other items they need to complete:
  1. Make a list of things you can do this week to practice your religion as you are taught in your home, church, synagogue, mosque, or other religious community. Check them off your list as you complete them.

This document has 14 journal pages and a cover sheet.  Each page has room for the date, a prompting question and a section to put the days happenings.  Hopefully this will give them a start to their own personal history.  

After printing it out you'll need to cut the pages in half to assemble.   There are several border colors so you can assemble it the way you like.  I'm planning on binding them as school with some plastic book binding combs and laminated covers.  Since most people don't have access to that you can have Staples do it or you can staple it or use metal rings.  I promise to add pictures once I have it completed.  Picture is above!

Bear Cub Scout Achievement 3e

My daughter made a mobile at school with our state as the topper and the state symbols hanging from it.  I thought that that would be a great idea for my Bear Cubs to pass off Requirement 3e: 
  1. Choose a state;  it can be your favorite one or your home state.  Name its state bird, tree, and flower. Describe its flag. Give the date it was admitted to the Union.
I of course chose our state since I was doing it as a Den meeting.  I searched the Internet and found these helpful websites (they have all the states, not just Virginia):

I printed off an outline of our state and enlarged it.  It ended up being on two pieces of paper, but I just overlapped them and had them glue it together.  I printed one of the following in color to use as a guide and a black and white outline for each boy: the state flag, the state bird, the state flower, and the state tree.

I had them cut out the state and glue it together.  Since Virginia is a little bumpy they cut around it and not right on the lines.  We then talked about our state flag.  One of the sites listed above gives the meanings to the flag.  As I taught them about the colors, symbols, and meanings they colored the flag.  We then went over the tree, bird, and flower as they colored those.

They cut out each of the symbols.  The flag was glued to the back of the state.  I brought a needle and crochet thread.  I put the string through the symbol and the bottom of the state plus one string on top to hang it by.  The boys then tied them on. 

DON'T FORGET to look up when your state was admitted to the union.  There is a place in their book to put this information or you could add it to the front of the state.  I forgot this, but fortunately for me one of the boys already had it done so I was able to share it with the others.

One of the sides:

The other side:

Sorry for my pictures.  One day I'll do better, but for now I'm just lucky to get them taken and posted :)

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Teacher Appreciation Idea #1

I know this may be too late for some, but hopefully a few of you can use it.  If not save it for the end of year gift or bookmark it for next year.  I wasn't going to post it because I want it to be a secret and I know that someone may be checking out the blog that is receiving it (Kari/Cathy if you are reading this don't continue!).  It is turning out cute so I think I'm going to post it anyway.  I'm making these for the teachers that I work for with the help of the kids in my class.   
First you need to buy some of those terra cotta pots along with the base (they are usually sold separately), a bowl - that will fit on the bottom of it (see picture), a wooden knob, and candy to fill the bowl.  I didn't take pictures of the pot before it was painted, but hopefully you get the idea.  Here is a picture off the Internet if you have no idea what I'm talking about:
Here is the pot and base right side up (these pots are actually brown instead of the orange/red color they normally are).  I chose the darker color because I thought it would be easier to paint:

The bowl:

The knobs:

I'm also using super glue (I wasn't sure that the glue gun would hold):

First turn the pot upside down.  I painted the small bottom part green and the top part blue.  If you can paint you could add details like grass, but that isn't one of my talents so it is solid green and blue.  Turn the base upside down as well and paint it blue.
Once it is dry it is time to take it to the classroom.  The hard part is doing it when the teacher isn't around.  In my case I found out when she knew she would be out and I brought in the supplies.  Using my acrylic paints and the kids' index finger we made fingerprint art.  We made lots of flowers, bees, lady bugs, a couple caterpillars and a butterfly.  I wrote their name and details on it with a sharpie.

I brought it home and sprayed it with a glossy clear finish.  Next I attached the bowl with the super glue.  The base will become the lid:

I still need to paint it (just purchased the knobs today) but the knob will go on top: 

Then I'm going to fill it with candy.  I bought gumballs (actually they are from Easter so they are more egg shaped) to fill it with.  I'll let the kids give it to the teachers on Tuesday.  Teacher Appreciation week is always the first week of May, but Teacher Appreciation day is always on Tuesday.  Once it is complete I promise to post another picture.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Printable for Easter Lunch

I made an Easter printable (or edited a previous printable) to go along with my Easter lunch idea (click on Easter lunch to see idea).  I'm using this for school lunch tomorrow.  It may be too late for you to do that, but I think it would be fun to do as a picnic lunch (in the house or outside if it is nice) on Saturday.  The biggest bonus is that you could see their reactions to the lunch.

Another Easter Printable

I found this on one of my favorite blogs, eighteen25 and had to try it out:

What do you think, which size do you like best?  My kids were loving the large marshmallows, but they wanted them all to themselves! 

 I've done these toppers before and I love them so I decided to try one of my own:

I did make one change to these (besides making them slightly smaller so the fit better) ~ I changed the word Place to Layer. 

Here are the steps I did:
Download and print the header
~When downloading be sure to click on the blue download button then wait 20 seconds to click on the link~
In a sandwich size ziploc bag place 3 rectangles of graham crackers, three peeps, and three snack size Hershey bars.
Cut cardstock to 6 3/4 by 4 1/2.  
Fold (or score) in half lengthwise.
Staple to the filled bag.
Using double sided tape adhere the header to the cardstock topper.

See the link page above for the parties I link to.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

An Eggstra Special Lunch

Today an idea hit me.  I'm totally excited that this is my OWN idea!  Yay!  I guess every once in awhile I do have a creative thought.  This idea was when I was contemplating what fun things I should do for my kids' lunch the Friday before Easter (I usually cut their sandwiches into holiday shapes, etc).  To accomplish this I bought a bag of 42 regular sized Easter eggs and 6 jumbo eggs (I bought some Jumbo eggs for another project so I had extra just in case - after starting to assemble I think I'll need 3 jumbo for each child) and I'm going to fill them with my kids' lunch for Friday at school.
First, I'm putting cheese puffs in some eggs.  I can fit 4 cheese balls in each egg.  I filled 3 of these eggs for each child.

Then I'm putting rabbit food in the some eggs - Veggies.  I could fit only two baby carrots in an egg or two carrots with 1-2 snap peas.  For just snap peas I could fit 4.  (I have one child that likes them both, one child that will only eat the carrots, and one that will only eat the peas).  For carrot involved ones there were 3 eggs for just peas I did 2.

Next I'm putting in grapes for their fruit.  About 3-4 grapes fit in an egg.  I'm giving them 3 eggs of grapes.


I also bought a few jumbo size eggs.  I put in two cookies for dessert in one.  In two others I'll cut their sandwiches up into bite size pieces.  I'm also going to have them buy milk so that their drink won't smash open the eggs.  I could have put each ingredient in jumbo eggs and then I would be able to put more in, but I want a lunch box full of Easter eggs with each egg being a mystery.

Lets see I have fruit, veggies, sandwich, chips, and a dessert.  I will probably cut a string cheese up into chunks as well (at least for my son).  I'll see how many eggs this really is and if there is room for more.  I may add another grape egg or two.

So if I stick with the egg count there will be three jumbo eggs, and nine regular eggs.  I think I will add a few more grapes to the menu.

Don't spoil the surprise!  I'm hoping I can get their lunch put together and ready for them so they won't know what it is until they open it at lunch. 

You'll need more eggs for the sandwich.  To get it to fit nicely plan on three jumbo eggs (brings the total to 4 jumbo eggs and 10 regular eggs (I added one more grapes).  I cut into 9 squares and put three in an egg:

Here are the pictures of their lunch boxes as promised:

The kids LOVED them and so did their friends.  I even received a "Your mom is SO Cool" comment from a 4th grader.  A+ in my book.  I think my middle school child even liked it. 

For a free printable to put in their lunch box click here

Linked up with:
I Heart Nap Time


The picture above is for: Cheap Crafty Mama

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Easter Printable

This isn't as fancy as many of the fun Easter printables that I have found on other sites, but it is a start for me.  Hopefully I'll have time to figure out photo-shop one day.  I designed it with a particular idea in mind.  I wanted to give the teachers a small Easter gift.  This will be for all the middle school teachers as well as the specialist at the Elementary.  I purchased a package of Dove eggs and I am going to attach one to the handout.  

These was state: Thanks for being an Eggcellent Teacher (four to a page):

I also made a few extras: Eggcellent Son, Eggcellent Friend, Eggcellent Daughter, and You Are Eggceptional (one of each on a page).

  1. Download your choice Eggcellent Teacher or Eggcellent son/daughter/friend & Eggceptional
  2. Cut out (either around the egg shape or more quickly with your paper cutter).
  3. Attach an Egg to it or punch a hole through it and tie it to a package of eggs.  There are bags of candy eggs, cartons of eggs, bags of plastic eggs, etc.

Easter Fun

I decided to take an old family recipe and make it Easter like.  This is a cookie recipe that my dad grew up with.  I know many people make something similar, but this recipe has no peanut butter in it.  Anyway, I've seen these nests made with several things - Rice Krispy treats (both regular and chocolate), chinese noodles & chocolate, etc.  We decided to try it out with something we always eat: Grandpa Cookies.  Well, when I was young they were called candy cookies.  They are my dad's favorite cookie, but my mom doesn't like them, therefore, my dad always made them.  When my kids were born we changed the name to Grandpa Cookies (since grandpa made these cookies).
When we scooped out the cookies we didn't just leave them in a blob we shaped them into nests and added some Hersey's eggs to the center: 

Boo with her nest of eggs:

If I have requests for the cookie recipe I'll post it.  I don't have it written down so I'll just be able to tell you how I make them (and how they differ from Utah to Virginia).

Bear Cub Scout Achievement 7d and 7e

*note read this post before doing this activity*

Requirement 7d state: Be sure you know where to get help in your neighborhood.

Requirement 7e states:  Learn the phone numbers to use in an emergency and post them by each phone in your home.

For this activity I made a sheet that they can write down phone numbers on.  One side had phone numbers for emergencies (7e) the other side had phone numbers and addresses for neighbors (7d).  

I put a crease down the center of the form (lining the forms up) and had the kids glue them together and then cut them out.  You can do this, but If I did it again I would cut each one out separately for them (boys do not know how to cut straight or that the pretty colors should be a border).  I would have a card stock cut in half for them to glue it to.  I also brought the local phone book to show them how to look up emergency numbers (right in the front on the blue pages).  I also explained that 911 is an emergency number, but there may be times to call police or fire departments that aren't emergencies so we needed those numbers as well.

NOTE - When it prints it is a solid line for the numbers although it looks like there are spaces.

Primary Printable (Manual 7, Lesson 10)

This lesson is The Sermon on the Mount and the Beatitudes.  For enrichment activity one I made these cards: 

The cards have half of each beatitude on them so you can match the up into sets. For class I printed them on card-stock (laminate if possible).  We played memory with them and then I gave a set to each child to play with their family at home.  You can cut them into rectangles or along the lines.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Primary Printable (Manual 7, Lesson 8)

For the activity at the end of lesson (Enrichment Activity 2) it states to get pictures of temples and church buildings and write their names on separate paper and have the children match it.  I made up a matching activity doing just that:

Google docs wouldn't let me upload it as a word file because it was too large.  As a PDF it was grainy.  I tried a new site: 4shared.com.  It takes larger files.  Leave me a comment as to which one you like best.  The trick to this site though is to make sure you hit the blue download button:
You then need to wait 20 seconds and then click on the link that appears over the countdown (blue underlined words: Download your file now.)

The pictures are mainly of temples, but there are a couple meetinghouses thrown in.  The meetinghouses are in our general area and I had the name of them listed, but for the sake of others I just left it as meetinghouse.  It is a word document so if you choose, you can change the picture to reflect the church building you attend and add the name of the building.  If your local temple isn't included you may want to add that as well.  
After I printed them on card-stock I just cut them into rectangles (I would have laminated them, but my laminator was down for the count).  During class I handed out the pictures to the kids first and kept the names.  I went through the names one at a time and if they thought they had the picture that went with it they held it up.  We did this to become familiar with the matches.  Afterwords we put them face down on the ground and played a game of memory with them.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

April Fool's Day

I usually do more for April Fool's day than I did this year.  I'm still working on the never ending project of switching rooms.  In order to do this requires much more work than I anticipated which leaves me little time to plan things out.  If I can find pictures (our hard drive crashed and we lost some of them) I'll post what I've done on years back for future reference.
First thing I did that morning was point out that mom likes to play jokes, but they are always nice jokes.  As a kid I hated April Fool's Day because kids used it as an excuse to be mean to each other.  I never have liked mean jokes so I try not to do anything that would make anyone upset.  Hopefully my kids remember this as they continue to get older and think it is funny to play jokes on mom.  
Fortunately my kids know I've been busy so when they asked me if I did an April Fool's lunch I could tell them that I've been too busy to think about it.  I also told them I didn't have any plans for dinner and if they thought of any to let me know (the first joke was a dinner joke).
But of course I did have some lunch plans (but no dinner plans).  I have a friend a couple years back who packed her kids' lunches using their pretend toy food.  She came to the school and brought McDonald's to eat lunch with them.  I loved this idea, but last year I was substituting and couldn't bring in lunch and this year I was working.  I mentioned this to the incredibly great teacher I work with/for (and I'm not just saying this - she is great) and she suggested that I do it anyway and pack them a special lunch to give them.  If she was willing to spare me for a few minutes then I was all for it (besides I didn't have time to plan anything else out).  So I started their lunches before they were up.  For the two in elementary I gathered the plastic pretend food and put it in their lunch boxes with a drink to give it some weight.  I put the food in plastic bags to help it look more real.

It was great to be in the hall when they opened it.  They looked and looked at the baggies pulling them out trying to decide what to do.  I didn't make them wait long.  I popped right in with their lunch.  I packed something to warm up for them since this was the one day all year I'll get to see them during their lunch.  Although they were already suspecting it I added the two things I did last year (which they loved BTW).
First I emptied a small water bottle and filled it up with Sprite.  Fill it up close to the top and screw the lid on tight.  It looks a lot like water.  There are some bubbles, but the kids don't notice.  I never pack water so they thought it was a great treat and then when it was really Sprite it was like hitting the jackpot!  I also bought them the individual bags of chips (which I'm normally too cheap to do - they get chips, but it is from a big bag divided into smaller ones).  I opened the bags at the bottom (as little as possible) and switched the contents.  Seal it back up with double sided tape.  Naturally you turn the bag right side up to open so they never notice.  It is fun to give them a wrapper of chips they don't care so much for filled with their favorite chips.  This year I only had Sun Chips and that isn't as fun since they are so much the same, but like I said as soon as they saw the bag they knew what to expect.  It did fool them last year though.

Open at the bottom, switch contents, and seal with double sided tape.

I did throw something new in there too.  I was going to do this for St. Patrick's Day, but had already made the rainbow cupcakes.  I made some vanilla pudding and then filled a small container half way full.  Then I put two drops of food coloring on top:
Three things I learned: one drop is probably enough (but two was good too), create a little well for the food coloring, and immediately put the pudding on top (for example don't take a picture while the food coloring runs out to the sides of the container).

After the food coloring is in cover it up with more pudding.  When they stir their pudding it suddenly changes color.  The pudding on the right had the blue food coloring run to the sides so I had to make another.  I did a different color for each kid, but I recommend doing blue.  First the pudding is yellow and then as you stir it turns blue, and as you continue stirring it changes to green (because the yellow pudding and blue food coloring fully mix to green).  It was great fun!
Since I couldn't take lunch to my one in middle school so she had a 6 inch Subway sandwich (we bought the night before), the switched chips, pudding, and Sprite in her water bottle.  Apparently in middle school those are lame jokes, but I told her that the boy that said that was just jealous that his mom didn't do anything like that for him.  Besides we are focusing on NICE jokes not mean jokes, right?