Sweet Maria has been awfully preoccupied these last couple weeks with a family emergency, so I wasn't pressing her to finish something as minor as a blog post just so we could "complete" this Busy Bag Swap series. (Thank you, Matt and Maria, for sending this will ALL that you guys have going on!) This is the final post from my group of ladies! It's been such a joy to correspond with each of you and I am oh, so thankful for all of the time, money and work that went in to making each of these bags! My kids sure are enjoying them!
Maria and I met last year at Classical Conversations, where our kids are in the same homeschool community. She is always a delight to talk to...with some new nugget of wisdom for me to walk away with and a big smile on her face. McKlayne and her son, Miller, are the same age and were in the same class last year. She also has her own Mclaine. He turned one year old on the first day of CC this year. When we sang to him, my McKlayne was taken aback and her face lit up, saying, "Hey Mommy, that lady said it was MY BIRTHDAY!!" Her excitement was short-lived as we had to break it to her that there was, in fact, another Mclaine in this world.
Name: Maria Upton
Kids/Ages: Maxwell (7), Miller (3 ½), and Mclaine (1)
How do you spend your free time: Free time? What free time? Seriously though, reading, cooking, spending time with my husband.
When you were a child, what was one of your favorite ways to spend your day? playing outside, riding my bike, playing with the dogs (we bred toy poodles), going swimming and dancing
What does special time with your children look like? Reading with and to the boys, snuggling, dancing with them to our favorite song at the moment, playing chase, listening to them laugh with each other.
A favorite tradition that you want to pass down with your children? Reading our thanksgiving book as a family and making a thanksgiving tree; Advent activities; looking at Christmas lights; and balloons on your birthday.
The Color and Counting Wheel helps your children learn their colors and how to count individual items from 0 to 9.
They see the colors on the wheel and clothespins, as well as seeing the written word. In addition, they’ll use their fine motor skills, but be sure to keep an eye out for pinched fingers when using the clothespins!
Each bag contains a Color and Counting Wheel (Color on one side, Counting on the other) and a set of 10 painted clothespins to match the Color Wheel and Counting Wheel.
The easiest way to use this activity is to have your little one choose either the Color Wheel or the Counting Wheel and then to use the corresponding clothespins and correctly clip the clothes pin to the appropriate color or number.
On the Counting Wheel side, we added shapes as a bonus (why not add some more color and shape to your life!), but the focus is on teaching your children to count and, as a result, the numbered clothes pins do not include a reference to the shapes. If your child is ready though, you can have him or her call out the number and color of a specific shape.
The total for making 26 bags was around $60, even with heavy duty laminating (thanks for a discount through our homeschool group)!
Ready to make your own?
For 26 busy bags, I used:
For 26 busy bags, I used:
-26 printed Color and Counting Wheels (front and back) on cardstock (approximately $25)
-Heavy duty laminating for 26 Wheels ($27.00)
-Clothespins (6 bags for a total of $6.00)
-Assorted acrylic paints (set for $2.47)
Here’s how I did it:
- Print the Color Wheel and Counting Wheel. It took a little work to get them to line up exactly so we could use double-sided printing on cardstock. Even with all the work, sometimes they feed into the printer a little off and if you want to you could just print each wheel on its own page and then tape them together. To get the colors right, I had to print at home on our own printer, but you could also print once and have color copies made if you are making several. I tried printing these at a professional printer, but the colors were off so making color copies or printing at home was the only solution.
- Using the acrylic paint, paint one side of clothespins to match the colors on the Color Wheel. When dry, then paint the other side white (for the Counting Wheel).
- Using a Fine Tip Sharpie on the “colored” side of the clothes pin, write the name of the color in capital letters. On the opposite side, write the number and the number in word form that corresponds to the same color and shape. I did my numbers from 0-9, instead of 1-10 for the simple reason that when we began homeschooling and teaching math, our oldest child, who is now seven, had a difficult time understanding that zero was a number. I chose all capital letters for the words since children learn capital letters first in our handwriting lessons. For those numbers that do not have a color on the Color Wheel, I painted both sides white and only wrote on one side of the clothespin.
Color & Counting Wheel