Indoor Camping

The weather has been horrible here so we decided to start our camping season indoors.

Indoor camping

Smores were prepped with chocolate covered biscuits and leftover peeps.

Indoor camping

30 seconds later the peeps were giant! This caused lots of excitement.

Indoor camping

We pretended to roast our marshmallows and ate our smores.

Indoor camping

The fire was made from blocks and a flashlight. These blocks would give even more light:

Junior Rainbow Blocks

The teepee was set up with sleeping bags inside.

Indoor camping

The flowers hunkered down for the night, after a story around the campfire.

Indoor camping

How do you make your indoor camping experiences fun?

Rock Play with a dump tuck and people

Sometimes it amazes me how few toys children need to play. Imagination always helps!

Rock Play with a dump truck and people

I heard giggles and silly voices outside the window a few weeks ago and crept out to snap a few pics, without disturbing play.

Boma was taking orders for rock deliveries. Daisy and Rose were building communities from the rocks and other found materials.

Daisy had established a TV room. Her people were sitting on a couch (leaf) and watching  TV.

Rock Play with a dump truck and people

It looks like a cozy, social entertaining space.

Rock Play with a dump truck and people

Rose had also created a living room and her people were “chatting”.

Rock Play with a dump truck and people

Whenever the girls wanted to build a new room or make a path, they put in a rock order with Boma.

Boma, in a very convincing, official voice, announced delivery and arrived with the dump truck full of rocks.

This focused play continued for nearly 40 minutes.

Apparently all you need are:

  • Rocks
  • A Dump truck (I like this one)
  • People (the ones the kids used were old counters from a game; theses are my current favourite)
  • Leaves

Happy rock playing!

Farm Animal Play

It is that time of year again when we think about farming.

The crops are in the field, farmers markets are frequent and we are starting to enjoy eating from our garden.

Farm Animal Play

Our Fold & Go Barn is a favourite toy and is easy to tote along to activities or a day out.

The animals can be stored inside but we have quite a collection now and they have a separate home in a tub.

Fam Animals Play

I threw in a tub of Skinny Sticks too. My theory was the girls would use them as fencing. It didn`t really happen.

I penned in the donkey as so:

Fam Animals Play

They ignored me and organised the animals into groups.

Farm Animals Play

The different sections of the barn were perfect for this activity.

They also re enacted scenes from favourite TV shows and books.

Just goes to prove, yet again, how I play with toys, is very different to the way the flowers engage with an activity.

I can predict how children will interpret a play invitation, but I am often wrong!

Fun with Family Counters

These All About Me Family Counters are one of the favourite things to play with at the moment.

Fun with Family Counters

I am not sure if it is the colour, the quality or the sheer amount of people that has the appeal but something works!

Fun with Family Counters

Daisy enjoyed organising them into parties. Here is a circle of friends.

She made patterns and asked Rose, “What comes next?”.

These counters are designed for making your family, patterning, sorting and counting but in our house everything is used for dramatic play.

Fun with Family Counters

With a little balancing, baby can sit on mama or papa’s hip.

Fun with Family Counters

Yet another of the girls parties. Rose likes to grab a few people, have conversations and move them about the house.

Yes they do end up everywhere.

Fun with Family Counters

They will be venturing outside to play in the garden soon. We will keep you posted as to what they get up to.

Tea Party for Two

The invitation:

Tea Party for Two

Yes, I know, it says tea party for two and yet there are three cups?

The spare cup is for Rose or myself to join in the fun.

Tea Party for Two

Rose, hugging an ice pack for a boo-boo, struggles not to touch the set up!

Tea Party for Two

“Wow, a real teapot?”

Yes. This set comes with a gorgeous tea pot but it was MIA at tea time.

Green Toys - Tea Set

The tea pot I used is my own, the pink one would have matched better.

Tea Party for Two

Taking turns to pour.

Tea Party for Two

Apparently dunking mini Oreos in crystal light is tasty.

Tea Party for Two

Sticking your pinkie out and saying cheers is of course a necessary requirement of a tea party.

How do you do tea parties?

Fire Hall Open Day

We attended an Open House at our local Fire Hall last month. It was a great day of showcasing what the local volunteer fire department can do.

Two vehicle extractions were simulated. The jaws of life were used on one car and the roof was cut off the second car.

STARS (Shock Trauma Air Rescue Society came to share their knowledge, flew in and simulated picking up the motor vehicle accident victim and taking off again.

As you can imagine the helicopter was a huge hit with young and old.

The two flowers beside one of the shiny fire trucks.They are very proud their Papa is one of the volunteer fire fighters serving our R.M.

It was a great day of learning and sharing. Fire extinguisher training and the the fire prevention burn trailer were available and firefighters were close at hand to teach and answer questions. A pancake breakfast warmed us all up.

Thank you to the wonderful firefighters for putting on a great open fire hall day and looking after our community.

Fire fighters are very popular here due to us having one in the family now.

Here are some of our favorite fire fighter products.

Big-Fire-Engine

Big Fire Engine

Young firefighters will save the day with this exciting foldaway fire engine. Lets them practice fire safety and rescue anywhere! Complete with steering wheel, flap door, sunroof, and tunnel port for expandable play. 52”L x 26”W x 34”H. Age 3+.

Plan-City-Fire-Station

Plan City Fire Station

Hardwood fire station set includes detailed fire station and hardwood emergency vehicles (fire truck ladder turns and extends).

Chunky-Puzzles-Fire-Truck

Chunky Puzzles Fire Truck

Chunky easy to manipulate pieces create a beautiful puzzle. 6-7 pieces each. Ages 2 +

Whittle-World-Fire-Truck

Whittle World – Fire Rescue Set

7 Pieces. Welcome to Whittle World! A world filled with top quality wooden play pieces, cool vehicles, bold colourful graphics and lots and lots of imagination. Interchangable people slot into the seats of buses, planes, fire engines and more, then switch places or stand on their own as a world of creative play unfolds. Ages 3+.

Jumbo-Floor-Puzzles---Fire-

Jumbo Floor Puzzles- Fire Engine

See the jolly firemen getting ready for action, get this shiny red tractor chugging around the farm or get the digger into action with these brightly coloured shaped puzzles. Ages 3+. Fire Engine 21″ x 16″.

Wooden-Fire-Truck

Wooden Fire Truck

Sturdy painted and natural wood vehicle collection, perfectly adapted for little hands. Their smooth rolling feature further enhances role play and storytelling. Measures approx 5″ L. Ages 2+.

Farmer’s Market Stand

The girls have been playing with their Farmer’s Market Colour Sorting Set all week and this Vegetable Shop appeared at the weekend.

Daisy asked for price tags and I gave her some post-it notes. She got busy pricing her wares and running tabs.

This was another great opportunity for me to see which letters and numbers she needed to practice. She seemed to favour numbers; 3,5 and 10 sometimes reversing the 5 and 3. This is consistent with her problems with writing the letter s. Lots of practice is needed to reinforce the correct movement into her kinaesthetic memory.

Here you can see a tab for; Daisy, Mama, Rose and Papa.

When I asked her if she wanted me to pay or put it on my tab she was confused. I explained a tab is when the shop keeper keeps note of the money they are owed and then bill the customer once a week or once a month.

I asked her if I could barter … she was not up for this!

Her pricing was a little irregular but as this is the first time she has set up a pretend shop I decided not to intervene. $10 for one corn???

Rose was chastised for stealing the produce!

Apparently if you were too close to the Farmer’s Market Stall you would be priced too!

Learning Opportunities:

  • Number recognition
  • Writing simple words
  • Writing numbers
  • Counting to 20
  • Sorting by colour, shape, texture
  • Adding to 10