Minion Day!

Last summer a local church advertised their Vacation Bible School with a large inflated Minion and a big sign that said MINION CAMP!  It looked like so much fun that my grandchildren asked me to make our own Minion Camp, and it was lots of fun!

Here is the list of our activities!

We started the day with group games – our group included 5 of my grandchildren ages 4-9, oh – and Papa!  The first game was actually created by 5 year old Nora.  3 of the children were Minions, 2 were Bananas and Papa was Gru – who tried to catch them as they ran from one line in the driveway to the opposite.   There were a few safety zones created by red mats.  When the children were tapped by Gru they helped try to catch the others.

Lots of running, laughing and  squealing – very fun!  Here are the pictures for the headbands.

For our next game, Marshmallow Catch, the children were paired with a partner and took turns tossing mini marshmallows into each other’s Minion Cup.

The parachute is always fun.  This time we also tried tossing Minion beanbags and a small Minion ball – and we also tried to keep them on the parachute!

The next game was Minion Hole Hula Hoop.  This was a variation on Freeze.  I played music from Despicable Me movies and the kids danced around.  I would call out various directions – like “Blue hoop – both hands!”  or “everyone into a hole!”  or “everyone in the silver hoop.”

When they all had to fit inside one hoop they had to cooperate and balance!

The last group game was Minion Math.  I wrote numerals on a large cardboard.  The kids stood around the outside of the cardboard – 2 at a time dropped a Minion beanbag on a number.  The next child made up a number sentence (equation) using those numbers.  When it was 4 year old Max’s turn we asked him to name some of the numbers instead.

I wanted to make a Minion lunch but couldn’t think of many things they would all like.  I did make Minion finger jello and found these Minion fruit snacks.

 

For dessert I made cupcakes that really didn’t look much like Minions.  For a birthday party a few years ago I made Twinkie Minion cupcakes that looked much better – but the kids weren’t big fans of the Twinkies.

In the afternoon the kids completed the rest of the activities in any order they chose, they each had a check off sheet to keep track.

 

I bought some wooden circles and squares and spray painted them blue and yellow.  Before Minion day Owen drew Minion faces on the yellow circles and bananas on the blue squares.  Then we drew a tic tac toe board on the driveway.

The kids love to play in water so we hooked up this waterboard.

I bought a Minion coloring book at Dollar Tree and cut apart all the pages.  The kids had lots of choices to color – watercolor paint, colored pencils, markers, or crayons.

I pulled out a Minnie Mouse Hopscotch rug and used the Minion beanbags that I made – but Owen decided to make it more complicated!

For Measuring Minions I made them each a Minion ruler and recording sheet.  They had to find 6 things to measure and record.

Bean bag toss is always fun!  To make the game last longer I had them graph how many they got into the basket each time for 5 turns!

My favorite activity was Make Your Own Gameboard.  I copied a few different gameboards on cardstock.  I also printed some typical game directions like – lose a turn, etc.  I got a bunch of Minion stickers from Dollar Tree and provided markers to decorate the boards.  I gave them each items for each player to move and a die.  You could also use coins or buttons.

There are many free gameboards online – I just did a search and found lots!

I also found this Minion Cootie Catcher online!

I had already spray painted some rocks and the kids decorated them with paint pens.

The rest of the activities were things I purchased for the kids to use.  I found a new (to me) website named Hollar that had a great sale (really cheap!) on Minion card games and MegaBlocks.

And at Dollar Tree I found a set of Minion Colorforms – some of the kids had never used Colorforms before!

Of course we had to have prize bags too!  I got some fun Minion toys from the Hollar site.

It was a really fun day!

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Bones!

Halloween is a great time to talk about how skeletons are not just a scary decoration, but really part of our body.

One of my favorite things to do around Halloween was to teach my Kindergartners the BONES Song by Dr. Jean Feldman.  You sing it to the tune of Macarena.  If you would like to hear it, I found several examples on YouTube by typing in Dr. Jean Bones Song.

 

Here are the words:

My Kindergartners would touch each part of their body as they sang the words.  The best part was when parents told me their kids would sing this when they visited their Pediatrician!

Here are a few fun skeleton books:

We also made these big skeletons and posed them in funny ways around our classroom.  Sometimes we cut the sides of of the paper plate faces to look more like skulls, but I kind of like the round, happy look!

I liked this project so much I still use it to decorate for my grandchildren!!

Have a happy and safe Halloween!

2,014 Things

2014 things

I enjoy reading a blog written by Kathi Lipp, check it out at Kathilipp.com.  She has issued an interesting challenge for the new year.  In an effort to find order in her home, create peace in her life, and share over-abundance with people who could use items, she has pledged to get rid of 2,014 things from her house this year.   I think I’m going to try it too.  It sounds like a lot, but it works out to be between 5-6 items every day.  It would be easy to cheat and count all the junk mail, stray puzzle pieces, and broken toys that go into the trash or recycling, but to make it meaningful I plan to only count things that I can donate or give away, or at least things I have held onto for many years and finally decide to give them up – like college text books and old photographs.

Today I went through 2 books of old pictures and scanned the ones I cared about, then threw out the rest.

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Ah yes, here is one from our rehearsal dinner, the night before our wedding in 1972!   I have an unhealthy fear of my wedding photos ending up in a random antique shop someday, where people will laugh and point and remark on my outdated dress and hairstyle.  I’d rather scan them and not hold onto the originals.  My kids aren’t going to want to inherit all my old pictures anyway!  I think I will count each book of old photos, or each box as one item.

I am purging books, weeding out craft materials and unpacking closets!  Kathi pledged that her house will have 2,014 fewer items by the end of next December.  Every time she buys something new, or brings something home (other than consumable items) she plans to get rid of something additional, on top of the 2,014 items.  I’m still thinking about whether I can commit to that part – but it makes a lot of sense.

I know I could have applied this challenge to my classroom too.  I had boxes upon boxes of STUFF.  When one of my sons was young he told his own teacher that he had a solution to the world’s garbage problems.  He said we should build more schools, because then we would hire more teachers, and everyone knows that teachers don’t throw anything away!  Well, I’m sorting, sharing and tossing now!  Anyone care to join me?

The most convenient way for me to donate items is Purple Heart.  You can schedule a pick up online and they come to your house and cart away clothes, household items and small pieces of furniture.  I also drop stuff off at our local Salvation Army.  I have a tendency to get attached to things, and feel sentimental about them.  But I also love the idea of someone using and appreciating things that I have been storing in closets or boxes.

So I am hoping for a happy, healthy and less cluttered 2014.