Thursday, January 27, 2011

Magnetic Drawing Board and Pen

"Look Ma, no crayons or paper!" Now, I love a good mess as well as the next guy, but this magnetic drawing board is too sweet for words!  Jude can scribble away, then erase and start again, and it's terrific for hand-eye coordination!  Reminds me of playing with Wooly Willie, as a kid.  Willie also came with a pen which was used to move magnet dust around, for adding features, like hair, beard and a mustache. 

Here's to the good old days, and the good new days,
Bubbie and Jude
P.S.  Let's here about your memories of favorite toys from the past, that may be similar to the toys being used by your grandchildren in the present!
Related Articles:
Wooly Willie 
Magnetic Drawing Toy 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Soap Crayons For Bathtub Fun

So, I had to open up the bathroom door to find out why Jude was trying to break in. He knew exactly what he wanted as he excitedly began yelling and pointing at the soap crayons on an upper ledge in the tub.  Handing him one green crayon was not good enough.  He needed all three with caps off in order to begin his masterpiece on his porcelain canvas.  Wow, was I impressed with his newly acquired drawing skills.  And when he was willing to move on to another activity, his art work wiped down easily with a damp cloth.  Next time I plan on water coloring with my friends, I'm inviting them all over to my bathroom for some real fun!
Bubbie and Jude
P.S.  What form of art have you explored with your grandchildren?
Related Article:
How To Make Your Own Soap Crayons 

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Playing With Play Dough

Play Dough is a great, calming, sensory activity which helps with hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, and increases the attention span for children... and of course entertains this Grandmom to no end. I get to help squeeze, roll, and pat the dough before Jude pours the pieces from one container to the next.  I can't wait to graduate to snakes and braids.  In the meantime, I'd sure like to figure out an easier way to pick-up the dough from the rug.  Any Play-Dough Vacs out there?  Let me know if you've got any ideas! 
Open for suggestions, 
Related Articles:
Easy Play Dough Recipes 
Play Dough Ideas 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Exercising Toddlers

The crib is now officially the gym!  Jude has discovered a much better use for his mattress, other than sleeping or napping on it...he's talking, calisthenics.  That's right!  He can jump, swing, bend, twist and kick, all for the low price of zero dollars a month.  Where can you get a cheaper workout than that?  He'll even drop onto the mattress when tired for a bit of a cool down, with some stretching, and of course, lots of belly laughs.  He's having such a blast, I'm tempted to try it on my own bed, but I think I'd need the bars to get as much lift as he does.  Some kids just have all the fun!  
Bubbie and Jude
P.S. How have your grandbabies taken to the crib?
Related Article:
How Much Exercise Do Toddlers Need? 

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Playing With Wooden Blocks

Too tired to pick-up after yourself? Well, it can still be done!  Just plant yourself in a restful position, and if it's not too much of a stretch, gently toss your mess back into it's container. I should have taken some before pictures!  Jude had just spent over 30 minutes, sorting, building and knocking down his blocks.  Not too many toys can keep his attention that long!  Blocks are a great toy to have around for toddlers, especially since they've been linked to strengthening math and problem solving skills...just watch where you're walking after dark!
Bubbie and Jude
P.S.  Any of you saved your kids blocks to hand down to your grandchildren? Or any other treasures?
Related Articles:
Playing With Blocks 
Helping Toddlers Learn With Wooden Blocks 

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Toddlers and Computers

At fifteen years old I took typing in my freshman year of high school.  The keys often stuck, and there was no such thing as "spell check," or  a "delete" button.  I used my fair share of white-out  and typewriter ribbon.  My best timing after an entire semester was 40 wpm. Times have certainly changed!  At 21 months old my grandson has been introduced to a computerized keyboard, which teaches him words, sounds, and letters.  If they made learning to type this much fun when I was a kid, I probably would have shown up for most of my classes!
Open to learning,
Bubbie and Jude
P.S. At what ages did your grandchildren get onto the computer?
Related Article:
7 Stages of Computer Literacy For Toddlers

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Keeping Kids Happy and Busy

What's in the box?  I don't really know if it matters, as long as it's filled with stuff that can be pulled out, lined up, stacked up and put back. 
My kids used to love to play with all the little loner toys that made their way into my junk drawer.  These play things were some of the lucky soles that might have been found under the sofa after their counter parts were tossed, left over from a kid's meal, or brought home from a party in a goodie bag.  And if I grabbed a few and stuck them in a bag or box, look out!  Their play value would hit the top of the chart.
Here's to some good old fashioned fun,
Bubbie and Jude
P.S.  Have you found your grandkids to like the same type of play as your kids once did?  If so, tell us about it!

Related Article:
101 Ways To Keep Kids Busy 

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Shape Sorters

Jude says, "if it doesn't fit, shove it in with your foot, or pound it in with a hammer!"  Not really!  Those are my words, not his.  I still haven't been able to break his record! I think he likes the fact that he can beat me!  Always giving himself a great big round of applause!  That's okay!  With a little more practice during his naps, I'll know my octagon from my hexagon.
Keeping it fun,
Bubbie and Jude
P.S.  Which shape sorters do your little ones like best?

Related Articles:
Using Shape Sorters With Toddlers 
Teaching Toddlers to Sort Shapes 
Gator Sorter (Thought this was great!)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Tree Climbing

Jude found the most perfect tree for climbing, if you happen to be 20 months old!  Notice the small separation in the "V" of the tree trunk, which happens to be just the right size for a little toddler's foot, and with a little help from Bubbie, he's made the climb! Done!  Over!  The thrill is gone, and we then move on to bigger and better things, like making leaf piles, and jumping in!
Have fun in the great outdoors,
Bubbie and Jude
Related Articles and Video:
Leaping Into Leaf Piles/Urlesque/YouTube Video (Enjoy!  I did!)
Indoor Wall Climbing Tree (Clever idea for a child's room!)
Go Ape  (This looks like fun for the brave-at-heart!)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Learning With Blocks

Playing with blocks can help with language, spacial, math, and problem-solving skills, among other things.  The "other things" according to observing Jude are: throwing them across a room into an empty box, making noise by clapping them together, and balancing them on his foot while sitting down.  Best part about playing with blocks for me would be... no batteries required!
Keeping it simple,
Bubbie and Jude

Related Articles:
Play and Learning With Blocks 
Blocks: Great Toys For All Ages 
Parenting Science: Toy Blocks