Wednesday, April 3, 2013

A New Site

I have moved! This site will still have my old posts, so please take a look around. But then please join me at


Friday, March 29, 2013

MORE Easter Websites for Kids

Easter is on Sunday! Here are 5 more websites to explore. If you missed last week's sites, click here.

Apples for the Teacher Scrambler puzzles

Family Fun  Off-line games – look like fun!

Easter Fun Games

DLTK Printables, coloring, games, puzzles

Busy Bee Easter Activities Printables games and activities

Happy Easter!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Promoting Literacy with Easter Crafts

Following directions is a get way to practice reading while having fun. And then you have something to show for it when you’re done! I hope these sites give you lots of good ideas.

There are several ideas to choose from.

This site has several ideas for crosses.

Easter Baskets from Spoonful
A bunch of ideas for making Easter baskets.

Easter Decorations from Spoonful
This site has a variety of Easter crafts.

Chocolate Easter Nest from Red Ted Art

Handprint Lilies from Enchanted Learning
I love the way these look!

Easter Finger Puppets from Craft Jr.
Very cute!

Origami Bunny Craft from Free Kids Craft
This is very cute and the directions look do-able.

Easter Bible Printables and Crafts from Christian Preschool Printables
This site has lots of offerings.

Have a wonderful Easter!


Monday, March 25, 2013

Celebrate! MORE Easter Books for the Whole Family

Easter is now just a week away! Here are some more great Easter books to read.

 Junie B., First Grader: Dumb Bunny  by Barbara Park, illustrated by Denise Brunkus
When her classmate invites everyone to an Easter egg hunt, Junie B. is very excited. When she won a special game, Junie B. was even more excited… until she learns what the prize is. You can’t help but laugh at Junie B.’s adventures.

 Wake Up, It’s Easter!  by James Kr├╝ss, illustrated by Frauke Weldin
Mr. Croak is a raven. He visits Vicki Vole to tell her that Easter is coming. She runs off to tell Rob Rabbit, who then tells the all the rabbits. This book energetically shows Easter as a time to be happy.

 Bunny’s Easter Egg  by Anne Mortimer
Bunny is tired after spending the night hiding Easter eggs. There is still one left, but she is too tired. She brings it into her basket and goes to sleep. When it starts to crack, Bunny decides to look for someplace quieter – not an easy task. Be sure to look for the Easter eggs hiding on each page.

 Who Hid the Easter Eggs?  by Pirkko Vainio
Harry the squirrel watches as a woman hides Easter eggs in her yard. But he’s not the only one watching. Jack, the jackdaw (a type of crow) is also watching and steals each of the eggs. Harry talks him into putting them back but they don’t remember where each one was found. No problem, they just help the kids as they look.

 Piggy Bunny    by Rachel Vail, illustrated by Jeremy Tankard
Liam the piglet is like any other piglet, except he wants to be the Easter Bunny. Even though most of his family thinks this is a crazy idea, Liam goes into training. Funny story and funny pictures!

The Easter Bunny has an assistant, Skunk. Things would go well, except Skunk gets excited by everything: boiling the eggs, making the dye, decorating the eggs… And when Skunk gets excited, he does what skunks do when they are excited. How will the Easter Bunny solve this problem?

 Chester’s Colorful Easter Eggs  by Theresa Smythe
Chester decorates 6 eggs – one for each of his friends. Then he hides each in a clever place. I like how Chester decorates the eggs in a different way for each friend.

Easter  by Marc Tyler Nobleman
This book covers many aspects of Easter, including a brief history, the symbols of Easter and how it is observed in other countries. The last pages have a glossary, more facts and resources for more information.

 My Very First Easter Story  by Lois Rock, illustrated by Alex Ayliffe
The story of Easter is told simply, from Good Friday to Easter day. The attractive illustrations nicely support the story. The small size is perfectly suited for small hands.

 Usborne Easter Fun  by Fiona Watt, illustrated by Katie Lovell
There are 12 crafts in this spiral-bound book. There are cards, decorations, and art projects. The spiral is nice because it lets the heavy pages lay flat. Each craft is very clearly shown and looks fun to do.

 Easter Sweets and Treats  by Ruth Owen
This book is best for family cooking or an experienced older child. All the recipes are clearly written and look delicious. There 6 recipes: Easter Brunch Eggs, Easter Bunny Cookies, Carrot Cake, Easter Nest Cupcakes Homemade Easter Eggs and Deviled Easter Eggs. Enjoy!

I hope you have a wonderful Easter!


Friday, March 22, 2013

Easter Websites for Kids

Looking for some Easter games, puzzles and activities? Here are 5 sites to check out. 

Primary Games: Easter Games Games and puzzles

The Kidz Page Games, puzzles, activities and coloring

Kaboose Games and coloring

Internal Schools Easter Activities Online games and printable activities

Next Friday, I'll have 5 more sites to explore!


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Easter Activities to Boost Literacy

Easter is March 31 this year. To get ready, here are several ideas for boosting literacy at home. Next week I’ll have a bunch of craft ideas.

Easter Egg Scavenger Hunt
This is really fun. We used to take turns creating scavenger hunts for each other. Try using some inside family information in some of your clues!
  • Gather 6-12 plastic Easter eggs. 
  • Place a clue in each egg, each clue leading to the hiding spot of the next egg. 
  • Example: Find an egg in a place in the kitchen that’s hot. The egg found in the oven could say, Find an egg hiding in someone’s slipper.
  • The final egg can have a clue to an Easter treat.

Word Searches
You can find Easter word searches online but creating your own is a better literacy idea.
  • Brainstorm a list of Easter words. Stuck? Click here.
  • Give each family member a piece of graph paper to create his own puzzle.
  • On the graph paper, write the letters of each word in the squares. Capital letters work best.
  • Fill in the unused squares with random letters.
  • Exchange searches.

Crossword Puzzles 
  • Brainstorm a list of Easter words and their definitions (clues). Or let everyone come up with her own clues. The simplest clues are fill-in-the-blank sentences: We like to ___ for Easter eggs.
  • Give each family member a piece of graph paper to create his own puzzle.
  • Lightly plot each word on the graph paper, in pencil, criss-crossing the words.
  • Once all the words have been plotted, heavily outline only the graph squares you used.
  • Write out your clues to correspond with the across and down words.
  • Carefully erase the words.
  • Exchange searches.

E-A-S-T-E-R Words
Using the letters in EASTER, create other words. Examples: sat, tear, rest… If you want, you can make it a contest to see who gets the most words. You can also give extra credit for longer words.

Easter cards can be fun to make. These sites will give you some ideas.

Easter lends itself nicely to science experiments. Check out these sites for some ideas. Very cool!
Dying Easter Eggs with Natural Materials (YouTube demonstration) 

This site has more Easter ideas.

Just thinking about getting ready for Easter makes me smile. How about you?

Monday, March 18, 2013

Celebrate! Easter Books for the Whole Family

Easter is March 31, just 2 weeks away. Of all the holidays, Easter is my favorite. For me, it’s a quiet holiday of church, family and chocolate. And then it’s spring. What’s not to like?

I have 2 weeks of books for you. Here is the first batch to get you started.

 April Adventure by Ron Roy
This book is part of the Calendar Mysteries series, by the author of the A to Z Mysteries series. Bradley, Brian, Lucy, and Nate are the younger siblings of the characters in the A to Z series. They are on an Easter egg hunt. They easily find the 12 plastic eggs but finding the special golden eggs is when the real mystery starts.

 10 Easter Egg Hunters by Janet Schulman, illustrated by Linda Davick
The rhyming text tells of 10 kids on an Easter egg hunt. Each page gives a clue as to where the eggs are hiding. But look carefully at the illustrations and you’ll find the hidden eggs before the 10 kids do.

 Fancy Nancy’s Elegant Easter by Jane O’Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser
Fancy Nancy and her best friend Bree are getting ready for an Easter party. Everything is, of course, fancy. This is a lift-the-flap book.

 Happy Easter, Mouse! by Laura Numeroff, illustrated by Felicia Bond
Mouse, from If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, finds Easter eggs all over the house. The color words (yellow, red…) in the text are the appropriate colors, making this a good book for early preschoolers.

  What am I? Easter by Anne Margaret Lewis, illustrated by Tom Mills
Each left page of this book has a riddle, such as, I am smooth and brown. The Easter Bunny leaves me in your basket. The right page shows a hint of the answer, covered mostly by a flap. Not terribly challenging, but fun.

 Easter Parade by Irving Berlin, illustrated by Lisa McCue
The text is based on the song from the 1930s. Anyone old enough to remember the song will have to sing it out. The illustrations, based on a bunny family, are charming and funny.

 There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Chick! by Lucille Colandro, illustrated by Jared Lee
I wonder how many books are based on the old song, There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly? This one has an old lady swallowing all things you might find in an Easter basket. The pictures perfectly match the foolishness of the text.

 Bently & Egg by William Joyce
Bently is a young and musical frog who gets roped into egg-sitting for his friend Kack Kack the duck. Bently is not very impressed by the plain white egg so he paints it with a beautiful design. This makes it look like an Easter egg, which causes a string of adventures. This picture storybook is very sweet.

 Easter around the World by Shannon Knudsen, illustrated by David L. Erickson
Although I've often read of how Christmas is celebrated around the world, I’d never really thought of how Easter is celebrated in different countries. This book tells of the Easter customs in 8 different countries, including Sweden, Ethiopia and Mexico. I learned a lot!

 Fun-To-Make Crafts for Easter edited by Tom Daning
I had great fun looking through this book. There is a wide variety of cards, decorations, art projects and jewelry. The projects use all sorts of materials, lots of them one you’d have lying about the house.

The First Easter: The Story of Why We Celebrate Easter by Carol Heyer (sorry, no link)
Starting with Jesus'birth, this book is a simple retelling of Jesus' life and the events leading up to the first Easter. The painted illustrations beautifully support the text. It would make a terrific read-aloud.

Come back next week for more fun Easter books!