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Silly Sports - Just for FUN!

by Kas Winters

Try some variations of baseball and other sports. It can be just plain fun and you can set your own rules. For example, instead of using a baseball and a bat, toss pinecone and hit them with a stick. (Be careful of the pokey pinecones.) For basketball or volleyball fun, substitute a balloon for the ball. It goes wherever it pleases and can cause a lot of laughs. Even more challenging, try holding on to a greased watermelon in a swimming pool. (Use a small amount of cooking oil so that the watermelon will be edible when the game is over and it won't have a major effect on the pool's cleaning system.)


More Ideas for outdoor fun in

Kas' book, Mother Lode.

Play a Game of Toss

by Kas Winters

There are endless ways to play tossing games. Roll up socks and toss them into a laundry basket, box or big plastic bowl. (Get kids to help fold laundry and the reward is time to toss socks!) Toss a shuttlecock through a hoop. You can make one by tying some cotton balls in the center of a piece of scrap fabric. Use an empty cardboard box for a tossing game. Cut one or more holes in the box and draw, paint or paste a paper drawing on the box to make a target, clown's face or something similar. Toss beanbags, socks, balls or other things into the box. You can do the same thing by cutting holes out of a piece of cardboard and standing it up at an angle. Toss buttons, jelly beans or small stones into a muffin cup. Mark the cups with points written on slips of paper so that you can keep score. If you have an old sheet that's ready for the rag bag, cut some holes in it and hang it from a clothesline or other rope outdoors. Let the kids try to toss balls or water balloons through the holes.


More Ideas for tossing games in

Kas' book, Mother Lode.

How many ways can you tell a story?

by Kas Winters


You can read from a children's book or, as my granddaughter says, you can "tell a story out of your head". There are other ways to make a simple story memorable. Have a hand puppet or finger puppet tell the story. Draw a picture together about the story. Visit a location that reminds you of the story and read it there again. Make sound effects while the story is being read. Use dramatic voices instead of your usual reading voice. Turn the lights down and cuddle while you read. Make a snack like popcorn and hot chocolate part of your story reading time. Or make a snack that is mentioned in the story, perhaps a strawberry tart.  Take turns reading different parts as if the story were a play. Read stories without pictures and talk about the pictures you see in your imagination.


More Ideas for story telling fun in Kas' book, Mother Lode.

Plant Veggies in the Kitchen

by Kas Winters


Start a kitchen window garden. Suspend a sweet potato in a jar of water so that half of it is under water. (These grow quickly and will take over an entire window area before too long. Kids love to watch them grow.) Put a carrot top or avocado seed in a container with water come up part-way over the carrot or seed. Stick a pineapple top in some dirt in a clay pot. Keep these watered and watch them grow.


More Ideas for science fun in

Kas' book, Mother Lode.

Make a Domino Run

by Kas Winters

Use dominoes, plastic blocks or even wooden blocks if you have some. They need to be stable enough to keep from tumbling over while you are setting them up. Make simple lines or get creative and have dominoes cross over and around. They can even be set up to do things like making a bell ring.


More Ideas for children's activities in

Kas' book, Mother Lode.

Science Fun

by Kas Winters

Make a Circle of String

Take a piece of string about 1 yard long. Go outdoors and place the string on the ground in the shape of a circle. Look in your circle and see how many living things you can find. Move the string to another location or two and see if you can find different living things in your circle. You can also count the number of green things in the circle, the number of stones or anything else of interest.


More Ideas for science fun in

Kas' book, Mother Lode.

Children are small people who make parents old and grandparents young.


about Children and Learning


List of on-line articles for parents


















The Ultimate Collection of Ideas for Keeping Kids Busy

 by Kas Winters

Over 5,000 Ideas for Toddlers through Teens

If you use just one idea per day, this book will carry you through almost 15 years!!

USD $30.00

A note about SAFETY

Whenever children are playing, working or doing anything at all, they need to be supervised. Adjust any activities to the age and abilities of the child. Pay attention to the materials, tools and location of the activity. Put thought into safety before the fun begins. If there's one thing I've learned from years of overseeing children's activities, it's that there's always something that a child will think to try that never occurred to me. So the key is to make things as safe as possible and then watch them the entire time.

Every Day Learning

by Kas Winters

Children learn from simple repetition and when they are least expecting it! In our family, having a child beside you when you are doing anything is part of everyday living. That's when the teaching takes place. We measure together to follow a recipe or build something from wood, read road signs as we travel, sing songs and play alphabet and rhyming games while riding in the car, talk about colors throughout the day and figure change when a purchase is made. As children get older, these times are used for more serious learning discussions about everything from geography to religion, from everyday math to science.

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