Letter J: Alphabet Activities for Kids

Letter J Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

Welcome to Letter J Day!

If you haven’t read the Introduction to the Alphabet Activities, you should start there.

Don’t forget to check out the Letter J:  Free Alphabet Worksheets for Kids, too!

Here are all the activities we did:

J is for Jellyfish Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

First, as always, we did our construction paper craft.  But instead of one big letter that we decorated, we did a bunch of little letters.

I had cut out a pile of Letter Js and a rounded top so that my kids could make their own jellyfish with the letters as tentacles.

And googly eyes.  I swear they get more excited about the letters that need eyes…

J is for Jack o Lanters Letter Sorting Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

Then for our Letter Sorting activity, where they needed to separate out the capital and lowercase letters, I went with jack o’ lanterns.

My kids were still kind of little at this point in out Alphabet Activities, so I had cut out the pumpkins and faces ahead of time and all they did was glue the finished jack o’ lantern to the paper before gluing on the letters.

Now that they’re older, I might still have cut out the face pieces but I would have let them make the faces themselves first, probably from a selection of eyes and mouths.

J is for Jump Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

Back to the chalk!

I love that my girls love being outdoors, so chalk letters are great way to get them moving.

I drew a bunch of big Letter Js to represent the word “jump.”  And then we did just that – jump from J to J.

J is for Jell-O Sensory Bin Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

This was a TON of fun for my girls.

The night before Letter J Day, I made a couple of boxes of Jell-O in a big plastic bin and I threw a bunch of toys into it that started with the Letter J.

I didn’t get all fancy with worrying about where the toys would stay once the Jell-O solidified.  I just tossed ’em in.  Most of the toys floated to the top, but they were still partially submerged and, thus, still had to be dug out by little fingers that were eager to get messy.

J is for Jello Sensory Bin Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

We did it outside to keep the mess out of the house, but I suppose you could do it on a tile floor somewhere if you covered it in a tarp or with a tablecloth.

We made a pile of the toys in another bin (the sand castle-shaped container you see at the bottom), and then we rinsed off everything with the hose when we were done.

The toys we used were probably ones I found in the dollar store, but here are some examples of the plastic Jet party favors, craft Jewels, and plastic Jacks that are similar to what is pictured above.

I would check the party sections of your local store for similar items that are sold as party favors, and the craft section for the jewels.

J is for Jelly Beans Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

We did a few worksheets, as always.  There were my typical letter searches and mazes and such, but the jelly bean ones were the favorites of the day.

I wonder why….. (nom, nom, nom)

You can find these jelly bean worksheets, along with others, on my Letter J:  Free Alphabet Worksheets for Kids post.

J is also for Juggling!

So we watched the video above, which my girls love because they enjoy watching kids doing things (plus he’s really good), and then we tried juggling with some light balls we had around the house.

We weren’t terribly successful, except at producing lots of giggles.  :)

J is for Jelly Toast Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

Gotta love jelly toast!

I cut out the J shapes with our letter cookie cutters, then slathered the toast in some butter and strawberry jelly.

J is for Jamaican Jerk Chicken Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

I didn’t want to make a big, complicated dinner in between our projects, so I kept things simple with this chicken.

I marinated a package of boneless thighs in some Jamaican Jerk Marinade that I picked up in the supermarket and threw them on a grill pan.  Easy Peasy.  (Don’t forget to have the Little Ones seek out the Letter J on the bottle of marinade!)

That’s it for Letter J!  Except for the free printable worksheets I made, which you can get here:

Letter J: Free Alphabet Worksheets

I’d love for you to share if you’ve done any of these projects with your little ones!

Follow me on Facebook and Twitter and Pinterest to see my latest posts.

Have fun!

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Letter I: Alphabet Activities for Kids

 

Letter I Day Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

Welcome to Letter I Day!

If you haven’t read the Introduction to the Alphabet Activities, you should start there.

Don’t forget to check out the Letter I:  Free Alphabet Worksheets for Kids, too!

I is for Island Alphabet Activities with Roaming Rosie

Our construction paper project was making an island.

The island itself, in the shape of an uppercase I, is cut from brown paper.  I made some little palm trees ahead of time (I free-handed those and they must have been close enough because my daughter knew what they were ;).

They we used some craft sand to represent the beach.  You can sometimes find craft sand in the same place where they sell artificial flowers, or just in the craft section.

We probably should have tried gluing the trees down first, but my daughter was excited about the sand.  We used white glue (not glue sticks) for this project, though, so that helped with getting the palm trees to stick to the sand once the glue below it was dry.

Letter Sorting I is for Inchworm Alphabet Activities with Roaming Rosie

For our Letter Sorting, we made inchworms.

And watched the Sesame Street version of the Inchworm Song:

I is for Igloo Alphabet Activities with Roaming Rosie

Then we tried to make marshmallow igloos.

This particular attempt didn’t work.  We spread white glue all over a Styrofoam dome, and tied to stick mini marshmallows to it.

They fell off.

It occurred to me a few days afterwards that what we should have done instead was to slather the dome in white cake icing (icing is an I word!) and stick the marshmallows into that.  That would have totally worked.  And if I owned a dome cake pan we could have made a cake interior for our marshmallow igloo.

Next time.

Or, you know, you could just turn a bowl upside down and slather that with icing.  There are actually plenty of options.

Either way, I would suggest having a separate (small) bowl of marshmallows available for snacking, to help keep the kiddos from eating the ones for the project.

Especially if you try it with glue.

I is for Icee Alphabet Activity Printable Worksheet

The I is for Icee worksheet is available on the post Letter I: Free Alphabet Worksheets for KidsI made this one because paint is always a big hit with my kids.

You glue down some course salt or raw sugar and, once the glue is dry, add some watercolor paints.

We used kosher salt which was attached via glue stick.

It’s a fun way to play with texture.  Just make sure you shake off all of the excess salt once the glue is dry and before you paint.  That way you won’t end up with pieces of salt in your watercolor tray.

Oh – and this project is meant to represent an “Icee,” which is a crushed ice drink.  Just in case that’s not a thing where you lived and you were wondering why I spelled “icy” incorrectly.  ;)

I is for Ice Cream Chalk Alphabet Activities with Roaming Rosie

I found this really cool ice cream shaped chalk at the dollar store, so we did some chalk drawings.

We often do practice our letters with chalk, but it was even more exciting this time around.  :)

Chalk Letter I Alphabet Activities with Roaming Rosie

Then, we used our ice cream shaped chalk to trace around some letters we made out of sticks we found in the yard.

i is for ice cream color matching 2

This was a lot of fun, especially since my girls love puzzles.  I still have these in our Folder Games binder.

You can find similar things by doing an internet search, but these are a color matching worksheet with ice cream cones and an insect shadow matching worksheet which I got from Busy Little Bugs.

Letter I Insects and Instruments Worksheets Alphabet Activities with Roaming Rosie

Above are two of the worksheets I made for Letter I Day which are decorated with little foam stickers we got at our local dollar store.

Of course, you could always use any type of sticker or stamp for these, or just make little sketches.

Letter I States Alphabet Activities with Roaming Rosie

This was a map I found on a random internet search.  There’s a very similar one at Free US and World Maps.

First we found all the states that began with our letter of the day, colored them and the letters in the title green, and then my daughter colored the rest of the map however she felt like it.  (We also underlined the “island” part of Rhode Island.)

Well, that’s it for the Letter I Activities!

Remember to stop by Letter I:  Free Alphabet Worksheets for Kids to get all of the printable worksheets I made.

I’d love for you to share if you’ve done any of these projects with your little ones!

Follow me on Facebook and Pinterest to see my latest posts.

Have fun!

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Letter H: Alphabet Activities for Kids

 

 

Letter H Alphabet Activities and Worksheets for Kids from Roaming Rosie

Welcome to Letter H Day!

If you haven’t read the Introduction to the Alphabet Activities, you should start there.

Don’t forget to check out the free Letter H: Free Alphabet Worksheets for Kids that go along with these!

Here are the activities we did for Letter H:

H is for Hamburger Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

We made a construction paper Hamburger, and although my daughter didn’t put it together quite as I had conceived she would, we still got the point across.  :)

I had cut out an H in brown to represent the burger patty, and there’s a bun in orange, a tomato in red, lettuce in green, and some Swiss cheese in white.

 Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

I also made a lowercase H and cut out some pieces in white that vaguely represented a horse’s head, tail, and hooves.

And my kids always love combining glue and construction paper, but if you throw in a googly eye then it’s really a party.

Letter Sorting H is for House Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

For our Letter Sorting, I cut out two shapes that looked kind of like houses and drew on some doors and windows and roof shingles.  My daughter was pretty young when I did this, but she’s old enough now that I’d let her draw the doors and windows herself if we did it again.

Then she put the lowercase Hs on one house and the uppercase on the other.

 Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

Making Hidden Messages was pretty fun.  This was the example I did for her, and I can’t remember why I don’t have a picture of the one she did.  I think I didn’t photograph as well.

Anyway, you draw designs on a white piece of heavy or construction paper with a white crayon, and then you paint over it with water colors.

The crayon resists the paint and your designs show through.

You could always prep some hidden messages for them, kind of like I did.  I used Letter H words:  Hi, Hello, and Howdy.

 Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

Hopscotch is always a big hit in our house, and it’s great for practicing numbers.

This time I drew a big and little H at the start of the Hopscotch.

You could also make a version that’s like our Power Word Hopscotch, and fill the squares with H words (Hi, Hello, Hand, Happy, etc.) instead of numbers and have your child shout out the words as they hop over the board.

Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

This was SO much fun.  After discussing how “hula” started with H, we pretty much went right into dancing and dressing up.

During the summertime, it’s pretty easy to find hula skirts and leis at the local dollar stores around here.  Or you could try a party store or check online.

Then we danced to some videos, including The Hula Song from The Lion King (just for laughs):

Then we watched the He Mele No Lilo scene from Lilo & Stitch:

And finally, we watched a more traditional He Mele No Lilo.  My girls really loved this and we watched it over and over, dancing along with them.  My older daughter also spent some time studying the little girls and the way they moved:

Then it was back to our projects…

Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

I found these little wooden helicopters in the craft section of Walmart.

I think I paid about a dollar apiece for them.

After we painted them, we attached some of the little foam letter stickers that I had picked up in the bargain section of Target.

Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

This is one of our favorite games.

This is the version that looks just like the one I had when I was a kid, but there is also this version which has red balls for some reason.

You can also see our LeapFrog Fridge Phonics magnet in the background (which is the older version of this one and kind of similar to this bucket set), because – of course – we had to discuss how both Hungry and Hippos started with H before we went on a crazy marble-eating rampage.

Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

This was a fun activity for practicing fine motor skills.

I found some plastic hard hats and the dollar store and we hammered some gold tees into a piece of Styrofoam with a rubber mallet.

This one definitely needs close supervision because you may have to hold the golf tee steady for them at first or (preferably) you may want to stick it in the foam a little before allowing them to hammer it further down.

But it was fun.  And we still play with the hats sometimes.  :)

 Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

It just wouldn’t be Letter H day without a discussion of my favorite play.

My girls are quite familiar with Shakespeare and a few of his plays, and one of these days I’ll get around to posting some of the Hamlet crafts and recipes we’ve done, but for now you can still see some of the kid-friendly books about him.

The one pictured above is from the very first Usborne book I ever purchased (which has led to a serious obsession with Usborne, but that’s a little off topic).  It’s called Illustrated Stories from Shakespeare, and is filled with gorgeous paintings and a story version of Hamlet and five other plays that are short enough to read to children.

Or, if you’d rather have a box set with five separate hardback books, including Hamlet, you could get The Shakespeare Gift Collection instead.

Depending on the age of your kids, there’s also the Shakespeare Sticker Dressing, recommended for age 5 and up, where you can dress up characters from the plays (like Hamlet) with stickers, and then there’s also the incredible Where’s Will book that’s like a “Where’s Waldo” book but with characters from Shakespeare’s plays (like Hamlet).  The second book is recommended from ages 7 and up (and I really bought it for myself anyway….) but even my three-year-old enjoyed searching with me.

You can read more about my Shakespeare book collection by clicking here.

Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

This was lunch:  leftover ham chunks and pieces of honeydew.

Food is one of my favorite things, so, you know, I try to add in whatever I can to our Letter Days.

Letter H Alphabet Activities from Roaming Rosie

Which also includes Hones Scones!  I can’t remember if we baked these on Letter H Day or a different day that week, but they are quick to make.

Here’s my recipe:

Sweet Honey Scones

Well, that’s it for today!  Was a bit of a full day though, wasn’t it?

To get all of the free printable worksheets I made, head over to my post:

Letter H: Free Alphabet Worksheets for Kids

As always, I’d love for you to share if you’ve done any of these projects with your little ones!  And please let me know which were your favorites!

Follow me on Facebook and Twitter and Pinterest to see my latest posts.

Have fun!

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Book Review: Easter Bunny Lift a Flap Book

Easter Bunny Lift-a-Flap Board Book

This adorable Easter Bunny Flap Book is not only fun for kids – it’s the perfect size to fit into an Easter basket, too!

I like to give my kids new books for every holiday, and this year, this flap book is going into my daughter’s basket.

It’s technically a baby book, but I’m giving it to my 2 (almost 3) year old, and I know my 4 (almost 5) year old will enjoy flipping through it, too, helping her sister find where the Easter bunny hid all the eggs!

Aside from the flaps that you have to lift to find the eggs, kids will also enjoy the peek-through holes in the pages that give you a hint at who we’re going to visit on the next page.

You can watch me demonstrate more about this charming book in my video review:

The Easter Bunny Lift-a-Flap Board Book isn’t available any more on my Usborne Books site, but you can still find some used copies on Amazon.

Happy Easter and Happy Reading!!

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Valentine’s Day Lunch Snack Ideas for Kids

Valentine's Day Lunch Snack Ideas For Kids at RoamingRosie.com

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I’ve already started adding fun Valentines-themed snacks to my kid’s lunches.

The top picture is of heart-shaped strawberries.

Okay, okay… they’re not obviously hearts upon first glance, so I did mention to my girls ahead of time that they were getting strawberry hearts in their lunch bags.  Just in case my artfulness didn’t shine through right away.

Anyway, to make quick strawberry treats that vaguely resemble hearts, follow these steps:

  • Wash strawberry.
  • Cut top off of strawberry.
  • Cut berry in half.
  • Cut a triangle out of the top center of the berry.
  • Cut off the edges of the top at an angle.
  • Ensure children they’re getting lovingly carved hearts and not mangled fruit pieces.

You can also toss those extra strawberry pieces into a bowl of cereal or oatmeal, by the way.

And onto the next photo…. I used a tiny {about 1-inch} cookie cutter to cut hearts out of American cheese slices and flour tortillas.

I cut out about twice as many tortilla hearts as cheese ones because my oldest likes to assemble her own cheese sandwiches out of the pieces.

The last photo doesn’t have anything heart-shaped, but instead includes something red.

I tossed a few red M&Ms {leftover from Christmas} into a container of nuts.  Cashews, specifically, since I think they taste better than peanuts, and there are kids in my daughters’ classes with peanut allergies.

My girls will eat the nuts without any extra incentive, but I felt the dash of red color just added a little fun.

And if you’re wondering about the containers I had the cashews in, these are the ones I use:

Kotobuki Children's Bub a Buu Snack Container, Triangular Onigiri Animals, Set of 3

My girls love getting snacks in these little triangle containers.  They’re technically condiment containers, but they’re easy to open {even for my 2yo} and they hold plenty of food.

Not a LOT of food, mind you, but a handful of nuts or raisins or goldfish or about 5 or 6 grapes.  Enough for a snack.

Oh, and I also cut apple slices and used the same heart shaped cookie cutter to remove the seeds, thus putting a heart in the middle of the circle slice.  But I forgot to photograph those.  I’ll try to remember next time.  :)

Please share any fun Valentine’s snacks you’ve made for your own kiddos!

**********EDIT:  Aug 2015**********

Aaaaaand….. now that I’ve been making heart strawberries in a way that’s SO much easier for a while now, I should probably update this post!  ;)

Anyway, after I wrote this, I discovered that it was way easier to just cut the strawberry in half and use a small heart-shaped cookie cutter to cut out the heart.  Takes two seconds and looks amazing!  Plus – the cuteness factor means my kids eat more fruit!  (Even at school!!!)

Check it out:

Heart Shaped Strawberries and Sandwiches for Kids Lunches

And you can see that I used one of the larger heart-shaped cutters for the sandwiches.  Since peanut butter and (strawberry) jelly can get a little messy, I sometimes cut out the bread first and then fill them instead of making the sandwich ahead of time and then cutting out the heart.

Happy Eating!  (Or happy school-lunch making!)

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Book Review: My First Keyboard Book

My First Keyboard Book Review by Roaming Rosie

Usborne’s My First Keyboard Book is a lot of fun to play with … and not just for the kiddos.

I enjoy it, too, and so do a lot of adults that come in contact with it.

Part of the reason for this, I think, is the wonderful feel of smooth keys and the beautiful tone of the notes, which isn’t overly electronic.  It sounds like you’re playing a piano or a high-quality keyboard.

The book itself teaches you recognizable songs {like Twinkle, Twinkle and Row, Row, Row your Boat} with color coordinated keys.  There are dots of color on each key that correspond with patterns of dots that produce the song if you play them in that order.

It’s easier to show you than to tell you, so here’s my video review:

It is an internet linked book, so you can see a video of someone playing one of the songs, read some more reviews, and see pictures of the inside of the book on the Usborne site.

Other things I like about this book are that all of the keys work – even the black flat/sharp keys, and I especially like that there’s an on/off switch on the back.  It’s nice to know I can shut it off when we’re not using it and it’s stored on the bookshelf.

It’s easy to play, too.  My girls are 2 1/2 and 4 1/2 years old, and while the 2yo isn’t really interested in following the colored patterns, she does enjoy making her own music.  The 4yo is able to play the songs by following the patterns, although her rhythm needs some work.

My point is, this book is great for younger kids as well as older ones.  Little Ones might need much more practice before getting the hang of it, but older kids will pick it up right away and, like I mentioned above when I pointed out that adults seems to love it, it’s somewhat addicting.

Plus, there are actually a bunch of interactive books that get kids involved with and learning about music, many of which are illustrated in this graphic:

 

Children Love Music with Usborne Books

Happy Reading!

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Hello Sun {eBook}

Hello Sun Picture Book by Rosemary Lynn

Hello Sun is my newest picture book, and I’m so excited to share it with you!

This is a simple text with words that flow and rhyme as you journey from the morning to the night.  With your Little Ones on your lap, you can greet the morning sun, the flowers and bugs and birds, and the stars and moon together.

It’s a great book for bedtime because of the soothing rhythmic text and the bold, striking illustrations.  It’s something I enjoy sharing with my toddler and preschooler, and it’s fun for them, too.  They can interact with the text {like by waving goodnight to the sun} but it’s meant to be read slowly, to help induce a calm before bedtime.  It’s also great to read to babies, who will especially appreciate the bold colors.

I had some fun with paper textures while making the artwork, and the words themselves were inspired by my kids.  My 4yo and 2yo always greet the moon and sun {“Hello, Moon!!!”}, and so this was a story that mimics our own daily paths through life.

You can get the ebook on Amazon and you can see all of my picture books there, too.

I’ve also posted about my picture books Alice’s African Alphabet Adventure and I Tell My Secrets to the Moon.

Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook for updates on my books, but also to see our latest glitter-covered crafts and sprinkle-covered food!  :)

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