As easy as 1, 2, 3…

A fun activity to curb boredom all summer long

Banish boredom for your kids this summerHere’s a great solution to keep on hand for all those “I’m bored” or “I have nothing to do” moments of summer. It can also be a great after-dinner activity to do as a family.

We call them 1, 2, 3 activity bags, but you can also use jars, boxes, etc.

  1. Print out our printable activity slips sheet.  You can print as many copies of the sheet as you want to make enough slips to last you the summer.
  2. Cut out your activity slips and divide them into three piles, each with the same number of slips.
  3. Fill out each slip with a portion of an activity – everything in one pile should be an activity (draw a picture, take a photo, write a story, etc.). Everything in the 2nd pile should be a subject (an animal, a person, a fictional character). And everything in the 3rd pile is what the subject is doing (catching a fish, baking a cake, driving a car).  Use our suggested ideas (below), and/or come up with some of your own that might appeal to your family. Use characters and activities your kids enjoy.
  4. Place each pile in separate bags, boxes or jars to keep around for the summer.
  5. When your child is looking for something to do, have him or her pull out one slip from each bag/box.

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Changing Colors

Learn about nutrition with carnations and color!

CIY carnation activity

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A fun way to teach kids about how our body uses the nutrients we give it is with a simple experiment involving carnations and food coloring.

You’ll need several white carnations (as many as you’d like to experiment with), food coloring, water and a few vases.

The experiment

Fill the vases up about a quarter of the way with water. Add about 10 to 20 drops of food coloring and stir it into the water. Cut off about an inch from the bottom of the stem of the carnation and place it in the vase. Now we wait. You can fill several different vases with different coloring if you’d like.

Every few hours, check back on the carnation to see if anything has changed. You might want to have your child keep a small notebook of observations.

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Camp Little Victors Recipe: Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

chocolate zucchini muffinsDelicious chocolate muffins are a great snack, dessert or potluck pleaser.

And the one thing that can make chocolate muffins better is finding a way to make them healthier AND even more tasty and moist!

This veggied-up take on chocolate muffins from Chef Rebecca Wauldron of Busch’s Fresh Food Markets is the perfect way to use up extra zucchini from your garden this summer.

Watch Chef Rebecca and her Camp Little Victors assistant, Lauren, whip up a batch, then check out the recipe below and enter our $50 Busch’s Fresh Food Markets gift card giveaway!

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Counting colors…and other fun survey activities for kids!

mott blog - survey graphic 2Three-year-old Amelie Strzalkowski, a neuro-oncology patient at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, loves colors and likes to ask others what their favorite color is. She and her mom keep track of all the answers they get and then Amelie’s 6-year-old sister Anya creates a chart tracking all the responses. It’s a super fun way for the family to engage with others throughout the day and allows them to work on a little project together.

Try creating your own chart or graph at home. Survey activities for kids can be fun, easy and educational. Let your child pick any topic, it can be something like Amelie’s, where she asks others for a response (what’s your favorite animal, favorite food, color of their bedroom…) or it can involve counting objects (the number of red/blue/green objects in the kitchen, the color of houses on your street, number of circles, squares/triangle-shaped objects in the living room…). The options are limitless and your child can probably think of some fun stuff he or she wants to count.

When doing your counting or tracking of answers, teach your child to make a tally sheet. That’s a simple grid that has the item you are tracking down the side and then a spot to mark a tally every time you find one or the answer is given. Add a number column where can total up the tallies.

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Yoga for Kids, Part II

Yoga is great exercise for all ages, but the earlier kids start the earlier they can start enjoying the life-long benefits. Specifically, yoga for kids can help them preserve physical flexibility and develop mind and body wellness lessons that they can carry well into adulthood.

And the best part is, many of the moves we recommend for your kids are great exercise for you to do right alongside them!

So grab your yoga mats and let’s get started.  Watch physical therapist Kendra VanWasshenova and her assistants Michael and Elena demonstrate a kid-friendly yoga workout in the below video.

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Coordination exercises for kids

Exercises to improve coordinationCoordination has a critical role in a child’s skill level in a number of activities as they grow and develop – ranging from performance in sports to academic performance and even attitudes about school and education.

You’ll find there are many ways to help your child refine his or her coordination skills in day to day activities, but there are also some ways to work on coordination that come in the form of fun activities!

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