Wednesday, December 29, 2010

No-Sew Eyeball Costume

When I saw the title "How To Make a No-Sew Eyeball Costume" on eHow I immediately thought of the character Mike Wazowski from Monsters Inc.  (I mean seriously, who wouldn't think of that lovable character?)

Although my costume idea looks JUST like a huge eyeball-- constructed from cardboard-- you could easily alter the construction a bit to make your own Mike Wazowski-esque costume for a party or just for fun.

( photo taken from )

Thursday, December 23, 2010

How to Wrap Potted Plants

Just in time for Christmas.... I wrote an article titled "How to Make Pottery Wraps" you know the things that wrap around store-bough potted plants. Instead of using the foil-like wrapper than comes from the grocery store, you can make your own rather simply.

You can use almost any type of material- such as stiff fabric or wrapping paper. Just make sure to wrap it with the most important thing- LOVE!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Bulletin Board Ideas for December and January

Winter themed bulletin boards, especially for December and January frequently have a short lifespan, since much of that time is spent on Christmas break. But that doesn't mean that the boards are any less important than other bulletin boards of the year.

Click THIS link for an article for sum unusual themed ideas such as National Cookie Day, White Christmas, National Soup Month, and Winnie the Pooh's birthday.
Photo from: criminalatt

Alien Anyone?- Costume Ideas

While my family doesn't technically celebrate Halloween, I do find it fun to discuss costumes, and even write about how to make costumes appropriate for Halloween. But frankly, why should one day of the year get all the fun? Let's make every day appropriate for dressing up silly.... okay, maybe appropriate for KIDS to dress up silly.

With that being said, I recently wrote an eHow article giving tips on how to make an alien costume. The ideas are slightly generic- giving tips for how to make a scary, funny, or beautiful alien, but my thought was this- it's YOUR costume, who am I to tell you exactly how to construct it? The beauty of homemade costumes is that every one is unique to the wearer.  So, check out my article for some ultra-cute helps to make your costume one-of-a-kind! OR check out HERE, HERE, or HERE for some ways to change an old pair of sweat pants from drab to fab!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

How To Make a Robot Costume

Robot costumes are fun no matter what the intention (party OR just dress-up play) or season of year.  Make this robot costume with a few simple household supplies... okay, so you'll probably have to go out and buy silver spray paint and ducting from the home center, but the extra time and money will be well-worth it. This costume will ROCK!

How to Make a Can Crusher

If you've been reading this blog for any period time you know about my fascination with simple machines. I recently wrote an article for eHow about how to make a soda can crusher, and I used some simple machines in the process- screws and inclined planes.

Unless you like crushing your cans with your feet OR on your forehead (WARNING.... my little brother tried that once and had a circular mark for a few days) you need a can crushing devise to help keep those recyclables corralled.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Science Experiment on Insect Repellents

Science experiments with human subjects and that test actual projects tend to be more fun than just recording results of inanimate objects. If you're as prone to bug-bites as I am, an experiment on which insect repellents work best might just be up your alley.  Check out THIS article for the steps on how to complete an experiment with bugs and repellent. If this project is for an official science fair, be sure to follow the scientific method steps, found HERE. For more ideas on science project click HERE .

Monday, December 13, 2010

Making Felt Coasters

100% Pure Wool FeltLooking for a cute and inexpensive craft for your children? Why not try making felt coasters? They're super adorable, easy to make, and don't take a lot of supplies. The personalization options are endless too. So check out THIS link, for some great housewarming, birthday, or mother's day gift ideas.

And be sure to check out THIS book for more project on how to turn felt into wearable project.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Making a Three-Stick Stool

For YEARS I've seen three-stick stools at sporting events and in people's yards, and always wondered two things- 1) how they worked (they look like they would be so wobbly) but also also 2) if I could make one. While flipping through The Kids Multicultural Craft Book: 35 Crafts from Around the World  the other day I found the instructions, and it looked SO SIMPLE!

This project would be perfect for scouts, kids, parents and anyone who needs to sit down from time to time. The thing I love about this craft is that the stool can easily fold up when not in use, and can be moved from place to place without much effort. Place the folded stool in a back back, or fashion a sort of carrying strap and you're good-to-go!

Follow this link to the step-by-step instructions on how to fashion your own Three-Stick Stool!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Painting Area Rugs

One Stroke 1287 Folk Art 32-Count Acrylic-Paint Value PackIf you want to add a little personality to a room, why not paint an area rug.  That's right- PAINT an area rug. Okay, so you won't paint the entire rug, just some decorative elements, such as a shape or name, but the result is still the same- a unique, one-of-a-kind, personalized rug, (drum roll please......) MADE BY YOU.

One of the great things about this project, is that it is simple, doesn't take a lot of supplies, and is relatively inexpensive. Remnant carpets, and small area rugs placed in front of doors make the perfect size, and aren't too large that you feel you need to fill the entire space. Check out THIS article, to learn how to personalize an area rug for yourself.

For this project you'll need acrylic paint, cookie cutters, area rug, and a fabric paint brush.

Friday, November 12, 2010


I've been writing a lot about Sunflowers- my FAVORITE flower- lately.  I just can't get enough of the happy yellowish orange bloom, the quirkiness of which it follows the sun, and the seemingly impossible spindly yet strong stalk. Click HERE and HERE and HERE for info about how and when to harvest sunflower seeds for roasting, and then click HERE for how to soak and roast the seeds yourself. YUM-O!

And if you're even MORE interested in sunflowers, and check out THIS article which discusses how the adorable plants track the sun.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Interesting Article I Read.... "Blogging To Teach Writing"

I read an interesting article in Homeschool Enrichment Magazine the Nov/Dec 2010 edition titled "Blogging to Teach Writing" by Gail Heaton, which discussed the infamous assignment of handing students a blank piece of paper and having them write what they "Did for the Summer" in 500 words. Why not consider letting your student begin a blog?

Your child's blog could be a journal of sorts, a way to get out his feelings- or it could be dedicated to a specific topic or theme. If sports interest your child, let him write about his favorite hero or team and give commentary on the game. If animals interest your child, let her record her observations of a bird feeder or a trip to the zoo.

Of course there are security issues to consider. Will the blog be public or private? Will you allow photos of your children and their friends on the blog? Will you allow commentary from other people?  All these things will depend upon the age of your child, and their development.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Interactive Winter Bulletin Board Ideas

Looking for winter bulletin board ideas? Help preschoolers learn about and enjoy winter snow better by creating interactive bulletin boards.

An article I posted on eHow, titled Interactive Winter Snow Ideas for a Preschool Bulletin Board  will teach you how to make a bulletin board about Snowman Construction, a Countdown to Christmas Calendar and Making Snowflakes.

License Plate Bulletin Boards

High school teachers might be worried about bulletin board ideas that look too cutesy, however this bulletin board idea about license plates works just right. You can create your own license plate visual, or recycle old license plates for a nice three-dimensional touch.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Hawaiian Party Decorating Ideas

If your child or classroom is planning a Hawaiian themed birthday party keep a few of these important idea tips in mind. Integrate the food into the party plan, using fresh fruit when possible, adding cute little umbrellas to brightly colored drinks. Decorate the room with inflatable toys, surfboards and body boards and brightly colored prints.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Simple Machines & Mouse Traps

Simple machines have always interested me, for their SIMPLICITY (go figure). When I ran across a title asking about creating a Mouse Trap I was intrigued on how to make another mouse trap that didn't involve killing the little pests.

Check out the link to my eHow article on how to rid your home of a mouse using the ingenious SIMPLE MACHINES of ramps and levers.

(photo and idea for the article from HERE )

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Storage Ideas for Playrooms and Storage Areas

Anytime kids are involved storage and organization is, in a word- NECESSARY! My article on eHow lists several ideas including containers, shelving, cabinets, trunks and pockets, all with kid storage needs in mind. Don't think that kid storage needs to be in bright primary colors or be covered in cartoon characters. Smart storage blends into the background and is beautiful and functional, more than anything else.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

St. Patrick's Day Bulletin Board Ideas

Everyone loves St. Patrick Day! Even though preschoolers might not understand the history of the day, or be Irish themselves, help them celebrate the spirit with bulletin boards decorated for the day. Follow the link to my article with bulletin board ideas on traditions, colors of the rainbows, the color green, and hiding the gold in a pot.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Christmas Bulletin Board Ideas

Looking for some Christmas bulletin board ideas appropriate for elementary classrooms? Well look no further!

The article I wrote for eHow lists bulletin board themes about cookies, presents, 12 Days of Christmas and Christmas decorations. Help children get into the Holiday spirit.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Safety in the Science Classroom

Safety in the science classroom is a MUST! Especially when dealing with hazardous chemicals and materials. Keep safety in the forefront with THIS article reinforcing to students the importance of aprons, goggles, and gloves.

For more information on science safety visit the Connecticut State Department of Education for a Science Safety Checklist.

How to Create a California Mission

Building an authentic-looking California mission is the highlight of the year for many 4th graders. Students get to let their hands create something they've been learning about in class, and get to let their creative juices flow.

Although the task may be daunting to some students, making a mission can be as easily as purchasing a kit and looking at online photos of missions for inspiration.  Check out THIS article for tips and ideas of how your students can make their mission look fantastic.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Light in Your Eyes

When light gets in your eyes it could be a good thing-- that IS how you see, you know-- or a bad thing-- you're not supposed to look directly in the sun. Check out THIS article on your eyes react to sunlight.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

What's Your Problem?

Science is a big problem.... literally! Scientists are always trying to determine the who, what, when, where, why, and how of things- that's called the Scientific Process.

For more information on what the "problem" is in science check out THIS article which gives a brief description. Or check out the Science Buddies website, which offers great resources for students working on official science fair projects.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Light Bulb Science Project

It's said that Thomas Edison once said- "I have not failed 1,000 times. I have successfully discovered 1,000 ways to NOT make a light bulb."

We may never know the exact number of times it took Edison to perfect the light bulb (some say he tried up to 10,000 times to get it right) but one things is for sure- the light bulb IS an interesting object.

Although traditional incandescent bulbs are going the way of the Dodo bird, you can still hone your inner Edison by attempting a science project on electric light bulbs. Check out THIS article for tips on how to complete your own experiment, whether it is just for fun OR for an official science fair project.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Bending Light

You don't have to be Superman to bend light.... it's as simple as placing a pencil into a cup filled with water. The explanation for WHY it looks the way it does, is a bit more complicated though, but not so complicated that you can't explain it to a group of 3rd grade students.

Check out THIS eHow article for more information on the cool science phenomenon.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Up in the Clouds- Science Project Info

So you're thinking of conducting a science project on clouds.... it's a great and interesting topic!

Before settling on the exact project, consider a few things by reading THIS article. You'll gain a better understanding of what a cloud science project might entail, and gain a few ideas of how you can go about the project

Saturday, September 4, 2010

School Bus Safety Bulletin Board Ideas

Since so many students travel to and from school using school buses, a bulletin board discussing important safety rules is a perfect addition to the classroom, particularly at the beginning of the school year when some students are encountering school buses for the first time.

Don't let the bulletin boards do all the teaching- use and refer to the posted bulletin boards to help students understand the rules, and even consider bringing in a school bus driver to answer any questions students might have.

Check the out THIS article for several school bus safety bulletin board ideas.

Ideas for Teaching "White Fang"

"White Fang" by Jack London is the classic story of a tamed wolf who takes on the life of an average dog.

Instead of merely assigning the book for reading to your class, or reading it to them yourself, integrate some simple activities that help bring the story to life. For example, bring the five senses into the activities, and show students photos of the actual places named in the book.  Showing students photos of snow, wolves, and the Mackenzie river will help bring the story to life, and help students remember the story long-after they are finished reading the book.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Gym Game Ideas

P.E. Games & Activities Kit for Grades 6-12: Over 250 Games to Put New Variety and Challenge into Your Physical Education ProgramIf the gym class for your elementary schoolers has become dull and lifeless, spice things up with a few new game ideas listed in THIS article written by our very own egghead.

Or check out THIS book for a plethora of PE games and activities sure to get your students up and moving!

Wash Your Hands!

Parents and teachers alike frequently tell kids to "Wash your hands!" Now you can have some ways to help explain the importance of washing hands to help prevent the spread of germs.

Check out THIS article with an activity, a song, a game, and implementing a hygiene chart.

Gifts for the Budding Scientist

Do you have a little scientist in the family?

Do you want to encourage that scientific spirit?

Why not encourage inquisitiveness with some gifts specifically with your very own "Bill Nye" or "Beakman" in mind! 

Check out THIS article for ideas on gifts that encourage the special child in your life to keep on experimenting.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Beach Bulletin Board Themes

Pacon 57015 Fadeless Art Paper, 48" x 50' roll, WhiteThemed bulletin boards, whether they be for a month or the entire year, are fun to implement. Frequently you can reuse some of the materials between the boards!  Follow THIS link for five different bulletin board ideas on the beach: Animals on the Beach, Surfboard Competition, Summer Vacation, First Day of School and Types of Coasts.