Current Events

Olympic Games #3: Make A Flag Craft for Kids

The Opening Ceremonies for the Olympic Games, where each country’s team will have a flag and flag bearer, inspires this make a flag craft for kids.

Last month, both the United States and Canada celebrated their major holiday. For each of these, we made flags.

make a flag craft

To make a sort of US flag, use a rectangle of plain white paper. Kids can use paint dabbers to create the blue background for stars. You may be able to find some white star stickers but, if not, the white spaces left between the blue dots can be imaginary ones. All of the red stripes may not fit, depending on the size of the paper, but there’s likely enough space for five.

make a handprint flag for Canada Day craft

For the Canada flag, kids paint two side bars with red paint on a white piece of paper. A hand makes a maple leaf so kids get to cover their hand with red paint. The hand-print goes right in the middle of the white space. The red hand needs to get carefully washed before kids wipe it on their clothes or touch anything else.

make a flag craft for kids

Countries have all different sorts of flags in many colors. But kids don’t just have to copy. They could also make their very own flags. Flags are a rectangle shape so kids can color on paper using crayons, felts, or paints. They might like to make geometric shapes, like lines, stars, circles, or triangles, or just color randomly. Kids will make their own choices about what they do as they create.

painting for kids

If the Opening Ceremonies are not too late for where you live, your family might like to watch the tv coverage. As they see all the different flags, kids can check to see if there are any that look like the ones they colored for their make a flag craft. There are so many flags because there are so many countries coming to the games. There is one team that doesn’t have any country at all. The members are refugees from various places in the world and they are using the Olympic Games flag. Are you waving flags too?

Transportation Activities #15: Touch A Truck Fun

On the weekend, our community had a Touch A Truck event. This was for both Father’s Day and a local fundraiser. What fun for both kids and adults!

transportation activities

A dream come true for kids, there were all kinds of trucks: a firetruck, ambulance, garbage truck, big transport truck with eighteen wheels, excavator, two different dump trucks, fuel trucks, a few tractors, a police car, and more. It was like Roger Priddy’s My Big Truck Book come to life with a whole parking lot full of trucks.

my-big-truck-priddy

For the first hour, the horns were quiet, but kids got to climb up and sit in the seats. They could look around, touch the buttons, and pretend to drive. Holding tight to her daddy’s hand and with the help of the driver, Little Sister got to move the garbage truck lever and lift up the trash container then set it back down. On the tractor, she sat all by herself. Big Sister climbed the ladder and discovered how high the sides are on a dump truck. The box of a dump truck is bigger than a room. Wheels on a couple of the  trucks were taller than some grownups. touch a truck fun

Although the kids had to line up and take turns, it was exciting to be up close and personal with the trucks they see. Kids watch videos of trucks and construction equipment so have ideas of how they work, but getting inside is a whole different story. Because we see these trucks on the streets and highways regularly, when we think of them, we picture them from the outside. The Touch A Truck event gives kids a chance to check out the view from the inside. Imagining being a driver in one of these will have so many more details after getting this kind of an experience and is so much easier after being hands-on. Kids will also have lots and lots of new words for talking about trucks. The video below is from another city and there were others from all over.

It’s no wonder Touch A Truck events are happening in more and more places. This was an awesome afternoon. Don’t think we can wait a year for another one. Any chance there will be one in your area?

Children’s Drawings Can Show and Tell

Last week was Canada’s turn for a long weekend, Victoria Day. Now, it’s the long weekend in the US for Memorial Day. For both countries, these days are the unofficial start of summer. Similarly, they both have links to historical events and past traditions.

Children are very present oriented, which is quite understandable. They don’t have a lot of past. Adults are often reminded to be in the Now. But, for all of us, what we imagine as our future, is influenced by our past and at some level, we need to engage with the past.

child's drawing soldier

A simple Memorial Day activity for kids is to ask them to draw a picture of a soldier. As we ask children to remember soldiers, we also need to check what they know about them. Having them draw and tell us about what they colored on the page is one way to see and hear their thoughts. Children’s drawings are a sort of show and tell.

The following video has been circulating on Facebook this week. For the charity, Inspiring the Future, children were asked to draw a picture of a firefighter, a surgeon, and a fighter pilot.

Out of 66 pictures, 61 drawings were men and only 5 were women. When we ask children to draw a picture of a soldier, will they draw men or women? Most likely, the soldiers will be men. Regardless, this post isn’t a criticism of gender limitations. That would not be appropriate here. Instead, it’s a reminder to think of soldiers are real people. As neighbors, family members, the dads and moms of kids who also go to play school, daycare, and kindergarten. Do kids know what they do? Who they are?

Having a link to a soldier in the present, helps children connect to the past. A personal familiarity will make remembering others so much more meaningful. Is there a way you can make connecting to a soldier happen for your child?

Super Bowl: Physical Activity for Kids

February has another exciting event this weekend: Super Bowl and Super Bowl reminds us about the importance of physical activity for kids. While the Super Bowl itself has only been around since last century, the history of sports goes back at least as far as Ancient Greece. Throughout the ages, people have understood the benefits … Continue reading Super Bowl: Physical Activity for Kids