💙MAKE IT COUNT💙 27 more days until we head back to school. SO we pulled out Monopoly today AND it just might take us 27 days to finish the game! 😂
👉🏼TIPS for playing Big kid games with littles roaming 1️⃣provide a “small parts” activity just for them. Today it was the marble run. See two posts back for another idea. 2️⃣ When the game is “done” for the day (cause we can never finish in one sitting🤦🏻‍♀️), mark each player’s last spot on the board, gather up each player’s items in a baggie and fold it all up to return to later. This will keep those curious Little hands from exploring.😂
#monopolygame #gameswithkids #parentingisfun #joysofchildhood #joysofparenthood #lastdaysofsummer #homeschoolherewecome #homeschoollife #athomewithkids #earlychildhood #earlychildeducator #earlychildeducation #playmatters #playwithyourkids #famtime❤️ #makeyourdayscount #purposefilledlife #memorieswithkids #educatingkids #motherhoodunplugged #childhoodunplugged #summerdays🌞

This is what the girls call it, I don't think I could have come up with a better name 😅 Any lost toys in the house tend to be stashed in here!
Think I need to organise them the ultimate sleepover in this room. I wonder if they will actually sleep? 🤔
The cubby castle 👭 🏩TEEPEE is Available @_cattywampus_
Good night Saturday 💤💤


I love checking out all the ideas people are sharing for the #FFLideas playful learning challenge this year. The AUGUST activity calendar is now ready for all Fantastic Fun and Learning email subscribers. In this exclusive subscriber freebie you'll find a simple calendar of activities to try each weekday throughout the month. I'd love for you to join in so we can inspire and encourage one another along the way.👆🏽 Click the profile link today to sign up for our email list if you aren't already a subscriber. The new calendar will be sent via email to everyone on the list tomorrow night.

The topics for AUGUST are:

July 30-Aug 3: Shapes
Aug 6-10: Slime
Aug 13-17: All About Me
Aug 20-24: Names
Aug 27-31: Space

Each weekday we'll be sharing an activity idea with you, and we'd love to see what you're doing for these themes, too! Use #FFLideas and tag @fantasticfunandlearning on Instagram so we can be sure to check out all the fun you're having with your little ones.

Sink or float, pirate style! First we did an experiment where we estimated how many glass stones it would take to sink the toy ships. In the end it took 5 stones. Second we tested other "pirate" items to see whether they would sink or float in the water. My boys really got into this activity, taking it one step further and testing out other items to see if they could sink their ships. Such wonderful discoveries were made this morning!

#learningthroughplay #homepreschool #activitiesforkids #prekathome #sahm #preschoolathome #preschoolthemes #earlylearning #funlearningathome #athomewithkids #earlychildhood #wherelearningmeetsplay #playmatters #preschoolhomeschool #letthemplay #playbasedlearning #preschoollife #imaginationsatwork #piratesweek #pirates #sinkorfloat #preschoolscience #piratestyle #yousunkmybattleship

🖤FRIDAY FACTS🖤 This is me behind the squares and heres some recent happenings. FACT 👉🏼 we’re almost 3 years post adoption of our two littles. FACT👉🏼 Learning to navigate their struggles has been SO hard. FACT 👉🏼Last night I went to my first post-adoption support group. FACT 👉🏼 We’re not in this alone and I’m excited to expand our support group! 🖤 “Loving and living with a traumatized child means embracing a love like no other. It is love lived out every day in a new and unfamiliar way. It is commitment cemented through the challenges and struggles of uncertainty. It is a life journey walked on unknown paths. It is faith, a hope, and a vision that the future will hold something far better than what you are experiencing now and perhaps ever dreamed possible.” 🙏🏼 Grace Harris in Wounded Children Healing Homes
#adoptionsupport #adoptionsupportgroup #postadoption #postadoptionsupport #intentionalparenting #intentionalprayer #motherhoodrising #intentionalmotherhood #parentingforreal #motherhoodconfessions #adoptivemom #athomewithkids #b1withmoms #woundedchildrenhealinghomes #earlychildhooddevelopment #earlychildhoodeducation #intentionalfamily #christianmom #earlychildhoodmatters #educatekids #educatingkids #fostertoadoptmommy #fostertoadopt #citywithoutorphans


Sensory writing trays are a helpful way to practice names, letters, numbers, and sight words. They can also be used for pre-writing activities like making marks, drawing straight, diagonal and curved lines.

For this tray we used a play dough base as our writing canvas and a pointed shell as a writing tool...this adds just enough novelty for even the most reluctant writers.
We like to use the strategy:
See It–Say It–Spell It–Write It

With this tray that looks like...
Turn over the large shell. Look at the word.
Say the word written on the inside.
Use the letter “pearls” to spell the word and say it again.
Use the pointy shell to write the word. Say the word a final time.

Pop over to our profile link for more details on this activity.

Buried treasure play-dough, walk the plank number line and parrot art have been some of our activities the last couple of days. Weve been keeping busy and having lots of fun with our pirate week!

Buried treasure play-dough: I included with the play-dough, rollers, toy boats, toy coins, necklaces and also seashells. This activity has been requested every day this week every time we have had free choice. A definite win with this play-dough activity!
Walk the plank number line. I found this activity on Pinterest. The kids loved balancing on it when I first taped it down. Later after they had lots of time to balance and pretend walking the plank we did our actual acticity. Numbers 1-10 are written on the tape. There were also number cards face down on the table. Each child took turns picking up a card and "walking the plank" to their number. Once everyone was lined up, we then took turns counting backwards from 10 to 1 and then "jumped" off the plank. They wanted to do this game over and over again!

The parrot art was super simple to set up and create. I printed off a parrot outline and at first had the kids color it to practice fine motor skills. They then got to drizzle glue on the parrot and place feathers on it. Super simple but the kids still had fun with it!

#learningthroughplay #homepreschool #activitiesforkids #prekathome #sahm #preschoolathome #preschoolthemes #earlylearning #funlearningathome #athomewithkids #earlychildhood #wherelearningmeetsplay #playmatters #preschoolhomeschool #letthemplay #playbasedlearning #preschoollife #imaginationsatwork #piratesweek #pirates #walktheplank #numberline #playdough #artforkids

Expectation vs. Reality🤔😱🤨!!!
This is how it is when you have a five yrs.old pre-schooler in the house. No matter how one wanted to make things nice, kids will always be kids😆😅. #expectationvsreality #expectationsvsreality #lifewithkids #mamalife #athomewithkids #mommylife


Using found objects for learning and sensory play adds a special touch that really sparks a child’s interest. We spent a week at the beach earlier this summer and collected some treasures from the seashore. They found a ton of seashells and, yes, some crab claws too. Kids love looking at them and playing with them, so why not add in a little learning along the way? If you have your own collection of beach treasures, print out our beach theme counting mats, and use them to practice counting and beginning addition.

Pop over to the profile link to get your free printable mats and see how we used them to practice
- counting and one-to-one correspondence
- number sense skills
- beginning addition and subtraction

One more day to go ... I love having Lucy home on school holidays, and love no drop off/pick up ... but three weeks is sooooo long ...

This would probably have to be the one of the most common hacks around when it comes to Childrens rooms. The great thing is though that these play kitchens are so hackable and the options are endless for what you can do! I had a lot of questions on this project including colours so I thought I would give a quick DIY tutorial right here on the gram!
1. Decide what areas you want to paint (This is so important. It could look really out of proportion otherwise!) and also what colours. Also if you will spray paint or use a small roller brush.
2. Screw off all your doors and handles that you wish to paint.
3. Tape the Kitchen with edgelock to create your paintable area. I only wanted the forward facing sections painted. This step is really important because it could be a disastrous result with paint bleed!
4. Prep your area with an undercoat, I used @duluxaus Undercoat and Primer
5. Once dry I painted two coats of @britishpaints Duck Egg Blue on all forward facing parts with a very small roller
6. While this was all drying, I spray painted fine coats on the handles and tap etc with the Dulux Metallic Rose Gold. And finished off with @rustoleum_australia clear varnish spray.
7. Once all dry I pulled off the tape and reassembled the Kitchen.
If you would like some video DIY TUTORIAL and TIPS including taping check out my playroom highlights!
Pic @decorme_au

You find your 3 year old playing in the bathroom. He’s filled the sink with soap and water and is playing with the bubbles. Naturally, your first reaction is to fill the pool with soap and water and let him go to town... right?
#pooldays #kiddiepool #soapywater #bubbles #waterplay #sensoryplay #sensoryexploration #interestledlearning #letthemplay #letthemlead #letthemlearn #learningthroughplay #learningathome #summerdays #outdoorfun #playoutside #funoutside #beattheheat #kidsatplay #kidsbeingkids #athomewithkids #kidlife #momlife #pocketfulofpages #suiteheartsofthewest

Wednesday views ✨ (sidenote: I’ve tried every method of art supply storage for my kids. Jars, baskets, tray...you name it. This shallow, sturdy basket with handles is perfect! It can travel between the coffee table and the kitchen table. It hold markers, regular colored pencils and crayons. It’s easy to tidy and is a nice catch all. Other supplies like paint and watercolor pencils have their own space. But these are always available with a supply of paper of a shelf in the dining room).

The scent of this play dough automatically brightens our moods...it's transports us to an imaginary beach vacation. 🏝Add coconut extract to your favorite play dough recipe to make your own....we use a recipe with corn starch instead of flour to make it even more white.
Then we set up this invitation to play using our coconut scented play dough, shells, glass beads, and small pieces of drift wood.

I mentioned last week during our watermelon theme how much we love sensory squish bags for encouraging sensory exploration and working fine motor muscles. And there are so many possibilities for creating them!
Here we used some shells collected from a beach trip, sand, and just a few more simple items to create a beach squish bag.
Not only do these sensory bag allow kids to continue exploring their love for the beach, they've also made for great learning tools to spark conversations and build vocabulary for both land and sea!
And the sensory fun was endless with this beach themed squish bag because kids can bury and rediscover their shells over and over again!
Pop over to profile link to learn how to make your own and see our ocean sensory bag, too.

We're going on a treasure hunt! This activity was very easy to do with both my preschool class and kids at home. We read "Pete the Cat and the Teeasure Map" by James Dean then made our own maps. For my preschool class I had my co-teacher hide 1 treasure necklace for each child so everyone got a treasure. For my kiddos at home we have a treasure chest which my daughter loves to keep treasures in. We took turns, first I hid the treasure chest and she had to find it then she hid it and I found it. This kept us entertained while I was BBQ-ing dinner outside last night
#learningthroughplay #homepreschool #activitiesforkids #prekathome #sahm #preschoolathome #preschoolthemes #earlylearning #funlearningathome #athomewithkids #earlychildhood #wherelearningmeetsplay #playmatters #preschoolhomeschool #letthemplay #playbasedlearning #preschoollife #imaginationsatwork #piratesweek #pirates #treasurehunt #buriedtreasure

Playroom... a specific place allocated in the home where Children PLAY.. and where so much fun is to be had and magical memories are to be made!
Who want's a playroom?
Who has a playroom? 🤸‍♀️
Do you have an allocated playspace?
Who need's to transform their playroom?
Who just needs to organise the playroom?
Let me know below 👇
Pic @decorme_au

I’ve switched gears a little here now that I’ve officially decided to homeschool. Homeschooling is something I had always felt compelled to do, but where to begin? I had no idea how extensive the homeschooling world is! I’m simultaneously super excited and completely overwhelmed!! Nevertheless, I’ve managed to narrow it down to three curriculum options that, with a little tweaking, I think will work with our dynamic. 🤞 My gut says this first year is going to be bit of a learning curve... for all of us!! Kindergarten here we come!📚
*tips/advice/resources/ideas always welcome!*
#homeschool #homeschooling #homeschoolmom #teaching #teachingathome #newatthis #learningcurve #kindergarten #kindergartenathome #homeschoolkindergarten #oregonhomeschoolers #learningathome #learningtogether #lifewithkids #athomewithkids #momlife #kidlife #raisingreaders #raisingleaders #pocketfulofpages #suiteheartsofthewest

We LOVE using our @thestep2company water table to create small worlds. The separate compartments give us so many ways to set up creative invitations to play. For our beach small world we used the large area for shells and water...simple but so fun! Then in the smaller section we created our own beach with a little beach hut, some sand and a few additional loose parts.
Did the kids mix the sand and the water? You bet! But that's okay! It's part of the fun and the sensory experience, just make sure everyone is on board before you let the mixing begin.
My oldest wanted to play for a couple of days with the items separate and thankfully her baby sister obliged. But after sissy gave her the go-ahead she was very excited to play “Hurricane.” She LOVED combining all of the sand, shells and water into one collection. This added a whole new layer of sensory play, that kept her busy for quite a while.
And if you’re wondering about clean up, each of the girls got to play with a colander. They sifted and collected the shells and gems, and clean up was just another part of the play!

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