Lion Scissor Skills for Kids

This super cute activity is great for helping kids develop their scissors skills. It is a really quick activity to put together and only requires a couple of easily accessible materials. You will only need some paper, a marker pen, scissors and a glue stick. The end result is a super cute piece of art too!

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This is what you will need:

Colored construction paper

Scissors

Black marker pen

Gluestick

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!WARNING! Remember that scissors are sharp. Adult supervision is always required when children are using scissors!

This is what you will need to do:

1. Cut circles from orange and yellow paper. You might like to trace a circle onto the paper first to help with the cutting. For each lion, you will need one large circle and one smaller circle.

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2. Use the glue stick to paste the smaller circle into the center of the larger circle.

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3. Using a black marker pen, draw a face on the lion.

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4. Grab a pair of child safe scissors and snip from the outside of the larger circle to the smaller circle. Keep cutting until you have snipped around the entire circle.

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5. Paste your lion down onto a piece of colored paper using your glue stick.

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If you would like a copy of the FREE printable version of this activity, download the file below.

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Cupcake Counting Activity for Kids

We loved this fun counting and early numeracy game for kids! It was super easy to put together and was a fun way to recycle a piece of cardboard. It is also a mess-free activity and once made, the game board can be played with over and over again.

If you don’t have time to make your own game board or you would prefer the FREE printable version, simply scroll down for your copy.

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This is what you will need:

A piece of recycled cardboard

Colored construction paper

Scissors

Marker pen

Pom poms

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This is what you will need to do:

1. Cut some cupcake shapes from colored construction paper and paste them onto your piece of recycled cardboard. You could also draw them with marker pens. To be honest, this will probably be a lot quicker and easier than cutting the paper ones out 😉

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2. Label each cupcake with a number. The number will correspond to the number of pom poms you will add to each cupcake.

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3. Grab some pom poms and place the corresponding number onto each labelled cupcake.

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Here are the FREE printable files:

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Easy Shape Activities for Kids

Learning how to recognize shapes and their properties is an essential early numeracy skill. My kids love learning all about shapes, and I love putting activities together that teach about shapes. As you can see in this post, shape activities can be so easy to set up, require few materials and can be played with over and over again.

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This is what you will needyou will only need three things!

A piece of recycled cardboard

Shape stickers – if you do not have stickers, simply use some marker pens to draw them!

Small pegs

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This is what you will need to do:

1. Trim your piece of cardboard to size. For reference, our piece of cardboard is about 30 cm long and 20 cm high. This is just a rough guide though, you can use any size piece of card that you like. Once you are happy with your cardboard, simply paste stickers around the edge of the card. Make sure you leave enough space to place a peg between the sticker and the actual edge of the card.

If you do not have shape stickers, simply draw some shapes with marker pens or colored pencils directly onto the card. You can draw any shape and use any colors that you like!

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2. Next, prepare your matching pegs. I used small shape stickers to label our pegs. As our game is a shape and color matching game, I made sure that the pegs were labelled with the same colored shape as the shapes on the cardboard.

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3. Now play! Simply match the pegs to the board. Attaching the pegs is great for fine motor skill development and for encouraging pincer grip – the finger grip required to hold a pencil.

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And the neat thing about this game is that there are so many ways to play. You could use a timer and see how quickly you can match the pegs or you could call out a shape or color and find the corresponding peg to match! And if you have colored pegs, you could even match colors to shapes. See the pictures below for that to make more sense 😉

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Thank you so much for reading! Jacinta Xx. I hope that you enjoy these fun shape printables!

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Halloween Scissor Crafts for Kids

Halloween is the perfect holiday for practicing scissor skills! I have heaps of fun ideas that will have your kids perfecting their scissor skills in no time. Best of all, you will only require a couple of inexpensive and simple materials – and these activities are FUN!

Keep reading, you will find a FREE printable at the end of this article that will make practicing scissor skills with your kids and students a breeze!

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Below is my favorite and most simple scissor skill activity. To play this one, you will only need some strips of paper, a marker pen and of course, some scissors. For this activity, we used specialized children’s scissors.

Children’s scissors are great for learning how to snip and cut. They are the correct size for little hands (so they are not too heavy or too big, which helps with accuracy of cutting), they have a real safety blade that actually cuts (plastic scissors often fold paper rather than cut through it, making them frustrating for little kids to use) and have that little spring lever connecting the two handle pieces together. This spring is fabulous! The reason being, that kids only have to get their hands working in the one direction to close the scissors, then the scissors spring back open on their own. This makes using scissors so much easier for preschoolers.

!CAUTION! Remember to always carefully and closely supervise your children when using scissors!

To put this activity together, all you need to do is cut some strips of paper, label them with a variety of lines using a marker pen, and then if you like, add a little ghost to each end of the strips. I used my Cricut Maker to cut the ghosts out and then pasted them down. You could simply draw them out or use a Halloween themed sticker if you have one. Then ask your children to cut along the lines in the direction towards the ghosts. You can make your lines as easy or tricky as you like – depending on your child’s skill level.

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I posted the below activity on my Instagram earlier this week. I have to be honest and say that I don’t really love the pictures (I have almost deleted them at least 10 times! ha ha!), but I do really LOVE the idea of the activity. It’s a fun variation on the above idea, and is a great and easy way to practice scissor use!

For this next activity, I simply cut out the ghost shapes on white printer paper, drew some lines on the ghost tails with black marker pen, and then we cut along the lines with scissors. Again, this activity allows practice of cutting in a specific direction. You may notice that these scissors are different to the ones pictured above. They are still children’s scissors, but they have a sharper point (compared to the safer, blunt tip scissors above) and are a little heavier. These scissors are good for children who have some experience using scissors.

This final ghost cutting activity is one of my favorites! Again, draw and cut a ghost shape onto white printer paper and make snips along the tail. Then for some extra fine motor practice, take a pen or a pencil and roll the snips of paper towards the body of the ghost. Then once you reach the body, remove the pencil and you will see that the paper has curled. These curly tail ghosts are just the cutest!

If you have younger children, you might want to use cardstock to use in these cutting activities. Cardstock is a little less flimsy than printer paper, making it easier for kids to handle and cut.

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Thanks so much for reading! I hope that you find these activities helpful these Halloween holidays! Jacinta Xx

Here are some fun printables for you to practice those scissors skills:

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Halloween Number Match for Kids

I first posted this super easy activity a couple of months back as a fun way for kids to practice their early number skills. The idea is to simply match the corresponding number of sticker or googly eyes to each number. This activity is perfect for practicing number recognition, number order, 1:1 correspondence and subitising skills.

Once you match the stickers to the numbers, it kind of makes the numbers look like monsters! So come October, this activity will be a super fun Halloween game too.

I have used stickers in the above pictures to label each number, but you can also use googly eyes! You can even use the googly eyes like counters, rather than gluing them down, so that you can play over and over again.

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This is what you will need:

Copy of the FREE printable file

Stickers or googly eyes

White school glue (optional)

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This is what you will need to do:

1. Print the free downloadable file.

2. You can now play any way that you like! You can use googly eyes to decorate your numbers, either gluing them down, or if you would like to use your print out over and over, simply use the googly eyes like counters. That way you can move them into place, and then clear them away.

!WARNING: Remember that googly eyes are a choking hazard. Always closely supervise your children and never give googly eyes to mouthing babies to play with!

3. I used some fun sticker eyes that we had at home to label the pictures that I posted over on Instagram. If you don’t have these stickers, you could try drawing some eyes with chalk or a white gel pen.

And that’s it! A really fun and super easy activity to play with your children or students this Halloween.

Before I forget, here is the FREE printable:

Thank you for reading. Jacinta Xx

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Times Tables Games for Kids

There are so many fun games that you can play to help your kids learn their times tables. These times tables wheels are one of our favorite ways to play and learn. They are great as they allow for both memorization and self correction. Children can play and learn on their own or in groups in a classroom. And, you can answer the times tables as you go around the wheel or pick and choose each multiplication sum at random. There are so many fun ways to play!

Times table wheels are so easy to make! And once you have made a set, you can use them over and over again for lots of learning fun.

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This is what you will need:

Print out of the times tables wheel file

Colored construction paper

Scissors

Glue

This is what you will need to do:

1. Print out the times tables wheel file. You will find the file here:

2. Cut around the perimeter of the circle and snip along the lines to the center circle to separate each number. Fold the sections back.

3. Paste the wheel down onto a colored piece of paper. Make sure that you only glue the center of the circle to the paper. You will need the snipped sections to be free so that you can fold them back to reveal your multiplication answers.

4. Write the answers to each sum under the folded pieces of paper.

5. Play!

I hope this makes learning times tables in your house more fun! Enjoy! Jacinta Xx

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Chromatography Science for Kids

I love this super easy chromatography experiment for kids! It kind of reminds me of the actual chromatography techniques I used in the lab as a student. Most importantly though, this experiment is fun! It is so magical watching the colors appear.

Paper chromatography is a scientific technique that is used to separate and identify individual components within mixtures. It can be used to identify proteins and even genes in a mixture of liquids. In this activity, we simply use chromatography to make the colors magically appear on our robots.

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This is what you will need:

Paper towel

Washable marker pens (the pens must be washable for this experiment to work).

Black permanent marker

Shallow plate or dish

Water

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This is what you will need to do:

1. Tear the paper towel into individual sheets and fold each piece in half. Open the paper towel and draw on the right hand side of the fold with the washable markers. You can draw anything that you like. We drew robots for this experiment. And if you prefer, you can lightly draw your pictures with pencil first and then color with markers.

2. Fold the paper towel back over and trace around your drawings with black permanent marker. Add as much detail as you like.

Here is a picture of the four robots that we drew.

3. Pour a small amount of water into the bottom of a dish or container.

4. Gently drop your paper towel directly into the water. The colors that you have drawn will magically appear.

The most important part of this experiment is that you use washable markers. The experiment doesn’t work as well, if at all, if you use permanent, non washable markers for your coloring.

Here is a super fun robot memory match game for you! Thanks so much for reading! Jacinta Xx Enjoy

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Bubblegum Art

I posted this activity over on my Instagram a couple of weeks back and wow was it popular! The girls and I had been home and were bored, so we searched through Pinterest for a fun art activity to try together. We stumbled across a similar activity and instantly knew that it would be fun!

Here is how we put our own little spin on this fun art activity.

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This is what you will need:

White A4 paper

Cardstock

Black marker pen

Coloured markers, pencils or crayons

Scissors

Balloon

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This is what you will need to do:

1. Draw a face with black marker pen onto a piece of white paper.

2. Color the picture.

3. Add a pattern to the background and lots more color. We pasted some confetti onto the cheeks!

4. At this point, paste your picture down onto some card. You don’t have to do this, but the paper on its own might be a little flimsy to hold when you are blowing your balloon.

5. Use your scissors to make a small hole where the mouth would be. Remember that scissors are sharp. Always be careful when using scissors and closely supervise children using scissors.

5. Gently press the balloon through the hole.

6. Blow the balloon up!

Thanks so much for reading! If you have any comment or questions, pop them below and I will get back to you. Jacinta Xx

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If you would like to make a girl balloon art, here’s a template:

If you would like to make a boy balloon art, here’s a template:

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Flower Science

I love this pretty flower activity! It’s super easy and inexpensive to put together, but resulted in so much fun and learning for my girls!

A couple of weeks ago we went for a walk together around our neighborhood, picking flowers that were growing on the nature strips – we didn’t pick any flowers from peoples gardens! It was actually nearing the end of winter, so we were really surprised to find so many beautiful, bright colored flowers growing.

Once we were home, we placed the flowers into an over sized ice cube tray, filled the tray with water and popped them into the freezer. To be totally honest, that’s where they sat for the next couple of weeks! But, we finally pulled them out yesterday and had the best time with them.

We used solutions of warm water (with a small amount of purple food dye added) and salt to melt the blocks. We talked about melting points and the patterns that we could make in the ice with the salt. We also noted how the flowers looked different on thawing than they did before we froze them! All great scientific observations.

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Here is what you will need:

Flowers

Ice cube tray

Water

Plastic pipettes or squeeze bottles

Salt

Food coloring

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Here is what you will need to do:

1. Pick some flowers. You might find these in your garden or in your neighborhood. Remember that if you are going to walk your neighborhood, make sure that an adult is present and that you watch for traffic when crossing roads.

2. Place your flowers into the ice cube tray.

3. Fill the tray with water. You will notice that the flowers float to the top of the ice cube tray wells.

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4. Pop the ice cube tray into the freezer. It will probably take overnight to freeze – especially if you are using similar trays to ours.

5. Place the frozen blocks onto a tray. Pour a small amount of warm water into the tray. We colored our water with a drop of purple food dye.

6. Take your pipette and drop the water over the ice blocks. Keep dropping until you see your ice blocks start to disappear. You can also sprinkle some salt over the ice blocks to speed up the thawing process.

7. If you don’t have a plastic pipette, you can also use squeeze or spray bottles to transfer the water. It’s totally up to you!

8. And this activity is a fun one to do outside! Take your tray out into a warm sunny spot and experiment further. This also makes clean up simple!

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The Science:

Have you ever wondered why salt makes ice melt faster? The answer is actually really simple. Salt lowers the melting point of the water, meaning it will thaw at a lower temperature. The more salt that you add, the faster the ice will melt.

Thank you so much for reading! If you have any questions pop them in the comments section below. Jacinta Xx

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Here is a fun FREE printable for you! It is a fun number matching game.

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DIY Puzzles For Kids

If you flick through my Instagram account you will notice that we love making our own puzzles, especially from craft sticks (do you call them craft sticks or popsicle sticks? Here in Australia we call them craft sticks!).

Craft stick puzzles are super easy and affordable to make. You can decorate them any way that you like too. You can paint them, color with marker pens or even use them as a base to collage on. Once the paint is dry, simply pop them in a snap lock bag, take them on holidays and road trips, and play with them over and over. You will never be bored again!

Another neat thing about craft stick puzzles is that they can be used as a fun way to practice number recognition and order. You can label each craft stick with a number (or even letters) and then put your puzzle pieces together in order. Lining up the puzzle pieces and manipulating them into place is also great fine motor skill practice!

Here are some of my most favorite craft stick puzzles that we have made.

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Keep reading to find out how to make our recently published geometric craft stick puzzles.

Here is what you will need:

Craft sticks

Washi tape

Pencil

Ruler

Black marker pen

Paint or marker pens

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Here is what you will need to do:

  1. Line 12 craft sticks up in a row. Secure the sticks in place with two strips of washi tape.

2. At this point, you may like to label each stick with a number. You can label either the front or the back of the sticks, depending on how hard you would like your puzzle to be.

3. Next, take a ruler and a pencil and rule geometric lines across your puzzle. If you do not want to make a geometric puzzle, that’s fine, at this point simply draw the picture that you would like.

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4. Paint (or color) your puzzle pieces. Allow the paint to dry completely.

5. Flip your puzzle over carefully and remove the washi tape.

6. Piece your puzzle back together.

And that’s it! It is so easy to make these puzzles, and the neat thing is, that once you have made them, you can use them over and over again. Just store your pieces in a snap lock bag or a small container whilst not in use! That way you won’t loose any pieces!

Thanks again for reading! Jacinta Xx

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Here are some FREE printable paper puzzle files for you! Enjoy!

Click here for a rainbow puzzle DIY:

Click here for under the sea toddler puzzles:

Click here for some blank puzzle templates:

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