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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Valentine's Day is for... preschoolers!

I've always loved Valentine's Day.  Not the gooey, commercial part of it.  The part where you take time out of your busy schedule to tell the special people in your life how much you mean to them. That part.

So, you know I got my kids involved!  I found these adorable metal pink and blue mail boxes at the Target dollar section (where I would be very happy to live out the rest of my days).  
One of my awesome parents bought me some heart stickers, and they went to town decorating them (with 15 stickers, which was our number of the week).  They turned out absolutely adorable!
Check'em out!

Once they all had their mailboxes, I set up a mail center, printed out a page with their pictures and names next to them, so they would see how to write each others names, and had them all write each other valentines.  They loved it!  It was great practice for them, writing someone else's name, besides their own.

After this, we made melted crayon hearts.
I found this on, however like most things I've ever tried from her website, mine didn't look quite like hers.  Not bad, just not the same.

For these cute crayon hearts, you'll need:
Crayons with the paper taken off (any color, but I went with Valentine's Day colors, reds, pinks, purples)
Wax paper
Pencil sharpener

The first challenge was actually getting the paper off the crayons.  Apparently that only happens when you DON'T want it to. 
Once that was over, I ripped off A4 size sheets of wax paper.  I put one in front of my kids, then had them shave crayons onto.  When they had enough, I put another sheet of wax paper on top of it.  
Here's the tricky part.  The wax leaks.
So, make sure you have at least two rags.  Put one underneath the wax papers, the other one on top, and iron away.  Keep it on medium, going up a little at a time if you need to.  Press the iron on the rag.  If you start to slide it, it'll mix the wax together, and look different.  If you just set it on the rag, then all the colors will stay intact.  Make sure to check the rag, because the crayon will leak.  You don't want to ruin your iron, or the next thing you're going to iron.  Once all the crayon is melted, I drew a heart on it, and had them cut on the line.  
Snip-snip, and...

Everything was so girly this week, that I wanted to do something for the boys that was fun.  So, since we were doing the letter "Vv", I decided to do the classic volcano experiment.
Incase you're not familiar with it, here's what you'll need:
5 tbsp vinegar
1/3 cup water
4 tsp baking soda
2 tsp dishwasher liquid
Red food coloring (I actually used sugar sprinkles, because I didn't have any dye on hand)
Brown construction paper

Add baking soda and dishwasher fluid to water. 

(I put it in the vase I used for the inside of the volcano, then I wrapped it in brown construction paper to make it look more like a real volcano)
In a separate container, combine vinegar and red food coloring.

  When you're ready for the eruption pour the vinegar mixture into the water.
And.... volcano!

That day, for our craft we made our own volcanos to take home.  

You'll need:
Brown paper bag
Half pages of red, orange and yellow construction paper
Rubber band

Have the kids cut the pieces of paper in strips (but not all the way through), then open up the bag, blow into it, so it puffs up, stick the cut up paper in the neck, and tie it off with a rubber band.  (I also had them write the letter "V" on it, so their parents would have a better chance of recognizing them. :)

Finally, on Valentine's Day, I put a bunch of my letter stamps out, bought some conversation hearts, and had them copy what they saw on the heart onto paper.
It was great for letter recognition, print awareness and fine motor skills.  They turned out pretty cute:

Then, we had our fabulous preschool Valentine's Day dance, which was so much fun!
They actually danced, and had a good time, and the teachers did a wonderful job decorating.  Here's a picture of my crazy class!

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