Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Games Little People Play

So I am not feeling overly creative and crafty right now. I think my brain is frozen. I did play a few games with Tucker today, so I thought for a few posts I would rate some of the children's games we have, the good, the bad, and the ugly. :)

I love playing games, always have. That is how my weekends at my dad's house were spent, playing games of all sorts. We used to have to go into a separate room to sort our handful of cards and stuff them into our little hands. :)

My advice for buying games: Go used! I love thrift stores. They always have games, and often still have instructions. The instructions will list how many and what pieces are included. I have been known to look through more than a few boxes (because there are always duplicates) and make one complete game. Then you get to try a game at a cheap price, because games get pricy. Yard sales are good too, and if you don't like going used, shop the ads. Most stores tend to run ads around Christmas and Easter time that are sales on games.

#1 Buckaroo. 5/5 Stars!

I like this game and my kids like this game. If we both like it, definitely a winner! This game is not as mindless as candyland or Chutes and Ladders where it is all to chance, and just getting the right count, but it is also easy enough for the littles to win. Basically you have to gingerplay place the pack items onto the mule and if you are not gentle enough or upset the balance he bucks. T laughs hysterically every time he bucks everything off, playing on a hard floor or table is much more fun than carpet, because you can hear everything being thrown. Ha ha! We played this over and over for a good 15-20 minutes. Normal games with my kids sometimes last less than five before they are bored. I think this game is a great way to teach kids to be gentle and careful.

#2 Don't Break the Ice 3/5 Stars
My kids really really love this game. Me, not so much. I do like it better than CandyLand, but the drawback to this game is set-up time. It takes more than a few minutes to squeeze the "icecubes" in there, and it is difficult for little fingers to do. My four year old is almost able to get them all in by himself, but not quite. When the set-up is longer than the actual game playing, I start to get annoyed. :) It is a good cause and effect game though. When I was a kid my grandma had a version of this game that used real icecubes. She just kept them stored in the freezer. It was sooo fun, however I imagine the game would not always last as long as interest allows once they start melting!More reviews to come tomorrow!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Started a new blog

I wanted to start a little blog full of ideas of things you can do with your kids. Things I have tried and know work. :) I LOVE crafty artsy kid stuff, I have cupboards full of supplies, and oodles more that don't fit in the cupboard. :)

My qualifications:

Unfortunately I do not have a degree in early childhood development, or even my child development associates, but I do have experience in working with kids. :)

I am the second of eight children. I did a lot of babysitting in my day, and organized crafts with my siblings all the time. They still tell me many things they remember making with me. (Don't worry, they remind me of all the mean things I did too lol).

I am a mom of two. I have a six year old daughter and a 4 year old son. My daughter is very artsy. She is an amazing little artist. My son is a budding artist. They both love making things.

I have babysat many kids over the years, before I had kids, and after. We have done our fair share of crafts.

I also have been in a co-op preschool group for four years in a row now. If you don't know what that is, I'll tell ya. The first year I was invited to a group organized by a mom I attended church with and lived in our neighborhood. Basically you take turns teaching, and send your kids to their house for preschool. Typically two days a week. Some people call it Joy School, but that you have to pay for their curriculum. Anyhow, I teach my child and 3-4 others about every 3-5 weeks, depending on the size of the group. This works out great for us. I am leaving my children with people I know really well that live right in our neighborhood. I only pay when it is my turn to teach, for whatever supplies I choose to buy (which I typically have most of it on hand, see above lol). Usually I end up paying maybe $5-$10 on my turn, so $10 a month for preschool is not a bad deal. We decide on the curriculum at the beginning of the year and go from there. I love my time teaching. I figure this is one of the only times I will ever be such an integral part of my child's education.

Anyhow... the ideas I post here will be things I have tried in any of the above areas. I will rate things with a star system, five stars being the best. I will also let know how what age groups it worked best with. I will try to share pics of whatever I can, though my children's faces may be distorted. I have been collecting these ideas since junior high, so I may not always credit where I got them, but I will try.

Please check out my links, I will post my fave places to go for great kids ideas, crafts, preschool, games, etc.

Thanks, hope you enjoy the ride!