Mini Bilibo Play

As with the larger version the many uses of these mini Bilibo are only limited by your imagination. Here you can see the full size Bilibo in action and the mini version here! They are pretty cool videos.

Mini Bilibo Set

I was very excited to try them out and gave them to my children with a mission: find different ways to play with these! They happily accepted.

Mini Bilibo Set

Rose began organizing them.

Mini Bilibo

Then had them leap frog jumping over each other.

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In the garden the flowers made potions with liquid water colour paints and…

Mini Bilibo

…grass and mud!

Mini Bilibo

Next the Mini Bilibo made their way to the sand box.

Mini-Bilibo-in-the-sand-box

These versatile and colourful mini versions of the Bilibo are a great addition to any play space! Check them out here.

Toys for a 7 and 8 month old

So much has happened in these two busy months. Sitting developed into commando crawling and then crawling on all fours.  The sensory ball was still a hit and the way it rolled away and needed to be chased caused squeals of excitement!

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Whittle world provided constant play amusement for all three children. Freddy liked to open the door on the bus, use the crane on the fire truck and put the people into the vehicles. Supervision is needed as the people are still quite small for babies.

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The excersaucer was still entertaining and a safe place while lego was being played with nearby or cooking  undertaken.

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The dreaded noisy toys (we have few) are a good entertainer for a short time and the cause and effect exploration is a great developmental opportunity. Here is a Sound Puzzle Box, one of the few ‘noisy’ toys sold at Quality Classrooms.

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Duplo is again one of those wonderful toys all three can play with safely. Freddy seems happy to be included in the play while the flowers can continue their dramatic play.

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A high chair has a clear vantage point to watch cooking or kitchen clean up whilst playing with some soft toys. This bowling set features 6 different soft pins with sounds and animal faces.

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Watching Freddy’s delighted discoveries and exploration is fascinating for this elementary school teacher!

Toys for a 6 month old

Freddy is now 6 months and so entertaining! He is having a great time exploring, mostly with his mouth but also now with his hands and feet. My aim is to share what he is enjoying most, each month.

At the moment most of his toys are in a huge play yard. This keeps the toys contained and in a few months when he starts moving, it will also keep Freddy contained and safe. With a busy household the play yard is must for us. Making it a fun environment now will hopefully result in it being a comfortable spot for him to hang out in a few months time.

He loves rattles and this is one of his favourites:

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It is easy to grasp and the beads are also of great interest. Everything goes into the mouth and therefore needs to be safe. At Grannies house this Abacus rattle is his favourite:

Abacus Rattle

Freddy has learned to roll a sensory ball backwards and forwards beside him. He also explores the soft spikes of the ball. Proud of himself:

Sensory ball

Jumping is also a delight whether it is in his jolly jumpy or an excersaucer.

jump

Freddy also gets to explore toys with his sisters who climb into his playpen to play with him.

Wheely bug fun

A trip on a wheely bug was also an adventure!

Indoor Fun with Floor Markers

The weather here in Manitoba has been nasty. Today frostbite may occur on unprotected skin in as little as 2 minutes! School buses are not running it is so cold with the wind chill; below -40 all day.

The flowers went out to play in the snow yesterday and lasted all of 10 minutes, their Papa lasted 15 minutes! With the lack of established trees on our property, there is nowhere to hide from Old Man Winter.

Therefore we need indoor activities to use up excess energy. As a teacher in England, wet play was always dreaded. Not getting out to run around is an issue for many children and adults alike. Luckily we have lots of space in the basement and plenty of toys to play with.

The invitation:  Floor Markers

Indoor Fun with Floor Markers

The Floor Markers we used are:

They are very reasonably priced, durable and can be used in so may ways.

Daisy took charge and designed a path to follow.

This involved a little trial and error as spacing and order of markers were adjusted.

Trying out the path

The girls declared the activity to be completed on each marker with feet simply requiring feet, hands requiring hands and a bunny hop, and the polyspot markers required different things depending on the flower. Daisy jumped and turned a 360. Rose enjoyed a simple jump. You can see her catching air below.

Rose catches some air!

Turning a 360 and landing on the polyspot marker.

In action

Close to the finish line.

Nearing the end

And the tickle monster attacks at the finish.

And the tickle monster!

What do you do to use up some excess energy in winter?

Crocodile Hop Review

We are always on the look out for games both children can play at the same time. Crocodile Hop fits into this category. It is labelled 3+ but can be extended to be suitable for pre-K and Kindergarten classrooms.

Crocodile Hop Floor Game

The activity guide explains how to play the game 3 different ways and includes 4 activities aimed at developing specific learning objectives.

We started with a basic game variation.

Crocodile Hop

The first job was to figure out the die. One indicated colour and the other shape. They took turns naming the colour or shape, Rose being gently corrected by Daisy if needed. Daisy decided on rules. I wanted to intervene but forced myself to allow her to decide on the ground rules.

The crocodile was on both dice and she decided rolling the crocodile meant you had to go back to the start… a long game perhaps?

However she also decided to use both die and this should make the game quicker.

Crocodile Hop

Using both die gave a colour and shape. Rose and I practised finding shapes and colours, and the game began. A recommendation is to wear shoes or have bare feet. The vinyl floor mat can be slippery.

Crocodile Hop

Daisy helped Rose find the next shape and colour she had rolled.

Crocodile Hop

And of course they rolled lots of crocodiles.

Lots of fun and the girls are eager to try out other games and activity options for the Crocodile Hop.

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!

Sorting Fruit by Colour

All that gorgeous fruit from the Avalanche Fruit stand was just asking to be used in other ways. One of the ways we played with it was sorting by colour on the light table.

Sorting Fruit

The Invitation:

Sorting fruit

Daisy instantly decided on her method. She started picking out the blackberries nearest to her and putting them on the purple paper.

Sorting fruit

Rose watched Daisy for a few seconds and then got to work on her oranges, again choosing to work on one type of fruit at a time.

Sorting Fruit

Both flowers working away happily.

Sorting fruit

Rose’s hand was struggling to lift with the tweezers and she was about to drop the tweezers when I asked if her hand was tired.

A response of ‘yes’ stimulated a mini lesson from Daisy on how to use the tweezers. She explained patiently how to place her thumb on one side and two fingers on the other. Very cute.

You can still enter to win an Avalanche Fruit Stand, just click here.