Browse Tag by Kids
Toddler School

Dollar Tree Bulk Buys | 7 Summer Fun Must Haves

7 Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for Summer Fun. How to keep kids busy all summer. Dollar Store Summer Fun. Affordable Kid Fun for Summer. Summer Activity Ideas for Kids.

7 Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for Summer Fun. How to keep kids busy all summer. Dollar Store Summer Fun. Affordable Kid Fun for Summer. Summer Activity Ideas for Kids.  I am a huge fan of the Dollar Tree if you hadn’t already noticed from Toddler School and Instagram. The boys get what I call a “Dollar Tree Education” and it is perfect for our family in so many ways. The Dollar Tree has some amazing finds in all sections, especially both their Education aisle and Toy aisle. I think my favorite thing though is that I can combine several things and get a $5 lesson that I can stretch out for weeks. We used to call this $5 Friday on Instagram where I would share the weekend lessons and my sweet, sweet finds for home-school preschool. Now that we’re getting into Summer Vacation I’m sharing my favorite bulk buys that last all summer. Cash and Wyatt are now 4 and 2 years old for age awareness.

7 Summer Fun Bulk Buys from Dollar Tree

I shop at the Dollar Tree a lot. It is sort of my escape for happy-time shopping when I get to go out on my own away from the boys. Funny thing about that is that I’m usually buying everything for them! I do love to buy things here and there when I only need a few, but the Dollar Tree has an exceptional website where I can order bulk supplies and have it shipped to the store for free. On occasion, like the summer I place big orders all at once so that I’m stocked and don’t have to keep running in. These are my favorite bulk buys because I can use them in large quantities and with multiple kids for play dates or camping trips.

7 Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for Summer Fun. How to keep kids busy all summer. Dollar Store Summer Fun. Affordable Kid Fun for Summer. Summer Activity Ideas for Kids.


Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for endless Educational Summer Fun and

Teaching Tree Educational Wipe-Off Charts

I’m a huge Wipe-Off Chart fan. Wyatt and Cash also love the ability to quickly erase a mess as soon as they make it, which they also love to do. These charts come in a fun variety of styles. Most of them are chore charts where you can fill in tasks or goals. Others have activities or calendars. Right now we’re working on days of the week and erasing days until they get to see grandma again!

36 per case- minimum buy. 6 Variations, but each has 2 different charts in it!

Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for endless Educational Summer Fun and

Homework Helper Educational Workbooks

Cash, having just left pre-school is really eager to keep going. These Workbooks are the perfect activity to keep him entertained while laying out in the grass, the beach or on car rides throughout the summer. I also bought these Kindergarten prep workbooks although Cash is a bit too young for them still. He likes a challenge 😉

24 per case- minimum buy. 6 Variations though so 4 copies of each book. This makes for an awesome purchase if you’re going camping with a group of cousins and all want to work through the books together!

Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for endless Educational Summer Fun and

Sidewalk Chalk

Can you ever really have enough? These boxes come with 20 pieces and they’re only a minimum buy of 4 Units!

Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for endless Educational Summer Fun and

Motivational Cones

Okay, so in addition to the motivational sayings on them, mini cones have endless possibilities for kids in the summer. {As do the pool noodles!} Cash once did wind sprints around them up and down our porch to tire himself out before naptime. These little cones are thick and heavy, but small. They’re perfect for toddlers to practice jumping over.

48 per case- minimum buy. You can also buy the bigger, 7-inch playground cones that come in sets of 2 with a minimum order of 4 units (8 cones)

Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for endless Educational Summer Fun and

Backyard Bug Catcher Sets

The kids love to be outside all day now and what better way to keep them there than exploring? I’ve actually bought quite a few of these sets. Cash likes to keep the bugs separated into many containers so he can spend time observing each one before he lets it go. Wyatt just likes to strut around with a bunch of bugs in a basket around his neck… They also have another set with some better bug grabbers which are a minimum buy of 36 for a case.

Minimum Buy 4 Units

Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for endless Educational Summer Fun and

Glow Sticks

These babies tend to be a staple for summertime fun. The Dollar Tree might very well be the best place to get them already, but they make it an even better deal when you can buy in bulk! 36 units per case which means 144 glow sticks for $36.

Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for endless Educational Summer Fun and

Flash Cards

I may or may not have a Flash Card addiction… we love them and have them everywhere. I even have multiple decks of the same cards so that I know I have them in the car, restaurant bag and just around the house. Sight Word Flash Cards are even a part of our Screen Time Password for the summer. For these, you get a huge variety of the 36 packs.

36 per case- minimum buy


7 Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for Summer Fun. How to keep kids busy all summer. Dollar Store Summer Fun. Affordable Kid Fun for Summer. Summer Activity Ideas for Kids. Thank you so much to Dollar Tree for always giving us fun and affordable supplies. I’m not sure how we would do Toddler School as big as we do without you and your budget friendly options. I am a proud Dollar Tree affiliate and the links above are my affiliate links which will give me a small commission if you buy through them. I will then use said commission to buy more awesome Dollar Tree supplies so THANK YOU! Be sure to enroll in Toddler School too so that you can follow along with us all summer and build a Dollar Tree Educational System of your own!


7 Dollar Tree Bulk Buys for Summer Fun. How to keep kids busy all summer. Dollar Store Summer Fun. Affordable Kid Fun for Summer. Summer Activity Ideas for Kids. Like what you read?

Join us in Toddler School!

Hi There! I’m Kandice
Wife, WAHM and mother to 2 Hooligan boys, sharing my Sweet & Sticky Story of Motherhood and taking my Boys through Toddler School. We love to learn with Sensory Play, Discovery Learning and our favorite Subscription Box, Kiwi Crate! Join us for the fun!

 



Toddler School

Why we Love Kiwi Crate & Why You will too | Farm Life

Why we love Kiwi Crate and why you will too. Subscription Box for Kids. Creative Activities for Toddlers. Koala CrateToday was another Kiwi Crate Day in our house! The UPS Man came and dropped the Crate off on our doorstep, which the boys quickly noticed and started shouting, “Our Crate, our Crate!” as they barreled to the door like puppies at chow time. This Crate was all about The Farm, which is perfect and just in time for Spring because it just so happened to teach about gardening. It’s like they read my mind, and Kiwi Crate does not disappoint.

Why we LOVE Kiwi Crate…

The age level that I Subscribe to is actually called Koala Crate, which is a joyous extension of the Kiwi Crate Family Brands. These Crates are a creative activity Subscription Box for kids. Koala Crate is the younger addition which meets the ages of my Hooligans.
Koala Crate: Ages 3-4
Kiwi Crate: Ages 5-8

The creator, Sandra, mom of 2 kids designed the Subscription as a means for creative materials to find their way to kids for easy, inspired discovery play right at their doorstep.

There are many reasons I love them which extends from the excitement my boys get when it arrives {I imagine it’s like for them what it is for me when my FabFitFun arrives, so who doesn’t deserve that?} to the pre-planned, educational lessons and extension activities it plans for me. Each box is full of age appropriate craft supplies and 3-4 Lesson plans that you go through with your child or children.

I couldn’t recommend Kiwi Crate more highly. Sign up today and

Get $10 off your FIRST CRATE!

Why we love Kiwi Crate and why you will too!

Kiwi Characters

Each box contains a pretty awesome and well-planned Imagine booklet that kids read through with the Kiwi Crate Characters. Ella Alligator, Peter Parrot, and Kellan Koala have a problem or a question that the lessons in the Crate help them solve. I love this part too. For this Farm themed Crate, the Characters wanted to know why the watermelons needed water to grow. We also learned what baby animals are called and about the jobs, each farm animal has, such as cows give the milk and cats chase the mice.

 


The Farm Crate

This Crate, which again could not have arrived at a better time {it’s like they know what they’re doing over there ;)} started with a lesson on Vegetables and planting them in a garden. We made finger puppets of farm animals, learned why barns are red {you’ll have to get your own Crate to find out} and trotted around our play barnyard.

The Veggie Garden

We used beads and pipe cleaners to make carrots, turnips, onions and radishes. Fine motor skills at work! We then got to “plant” them and play a matching game by pulling them out of the soil. Cash may have cheated… twice. They also got stickers to decorate the garden box for even more fine motor practice. This was Wyatt’s favorite part.

Why we love Kiwi Crate and why you will too. Subscription Box for Kids. Creative Activities for Toddlers. Koala Crate

The Farm Animals

I got a little more involved than I should have by doing all the noses and tails. I did let them go crazy with the eyes though. We talked about animals only having two eyes, and then Cash proceeded to put 6 on the pig. #thestruggleisreal. They loved the eyes and we got pretty crazy, but they had a ridiculous amount of fun. They made their puppets trot around the barnyard cut out and roll in the mud. The Chicken Finger Puppet got to sleep in the hay and the Horse raced all around every field. They play all day long.

Why we love Kiwi Crate and why you will too. Subscription Box for Kids. Creative Activities for Toddlers. Koala Crate

 

Why you’ll love it too…

If you’re a busy Mom looking for an already planned, educational activity set for your kids, Kiwi Crate is for you. I already do a lot with my kids but as we all know, I run short on time to prepare and my brain gets tired of being “on” all the time. I am thankful to have the Kiwi Characters take a shift once a month. Not only is the Crate’s arrival day a big day, but the activities keep going for days after. Not only am I always impressed by the content they cover in each box, but the excitement on my boys’ faces when it arrives is worth it enough for me. They LOVE it! They look forward to it, and your kids will too. 😉

See our other Koala Crate Post about WIND HERE and remember to Get $10 off your FIRST BOX when you sign up for Kiwi Crate. **This is my Affiliate Link which might earn Cash & Wyatt a free box if you use it 😉


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Join us in Toddler School!

Hi There! I’m Kandice
Wife, WAHM and mother to 2 Hooligan boys, sharing my Sweet & Sticky Story of Motherhood and taking my Boys through Toddler School. We love to learn with Sensory Play, Discovery Learning and our favorite Subscription Box, Kiwi Crate! Join us for the fun!

 



Toddler School

Composting for Kids | A Complete Toddler School Unit

Composting for Kids. Starting a Graden. Toddler Gardening. Gardening with Kids. How to Compost. How to start a garden. Welcome to Toddler School! Cash & Wyatt are on another educational adventure together. For this unit, Cash is 2.5 and Wyatt is 15 Months. We will be taking the Hooligans outside and broadening our home school preschool classroom horizons.

I’m Kandice, former special education and kindergarten educator turned full-time mom. You can read up on my educational philosophies, behavioral expectations, and pedagogy at the main Toddler School Page.

I’m so excited to reveal our next Toddler School Unit on…

Composting for Kids

We hope you can join us! I’ll be updating this main Unit Page as we progress through our lessons and building our garden. If you miss a lesson check in right here to catch up. This unit also evolved a bit beyond just Composting and is also a GARDENING and Composting Unit… we got ambitious…

If you want to follow along daily, you know where to go! That’s right!

You can catch Cash & Wyatt mid-dirt throw by tagging along

Here is the game plan for this Unit and how to begin your own:

Choosing your Garden Space and your Expectations

I think the most important part of teaching any unit with Toddlers is to identify your expectations and your teaching goals. What do you want everyone to get out of this? You included. If your expectations are too high {which is easy to get carried away forgetting they’re toddlers} you’ll be stressed out every lesson trying to ensure that they are learning “right” instead of enjoying your time.

I have no expectations for a plentiful harvest from this garden despite us planting vegetables.

I have accepted that we’re doing this unit on Gardening and Composting for fun. And if nothing actually grows, so be it. If Cash drowns every seed and Wyatt tears up every plant, we’ll still be outside, talking about how things grow… and if we don’t have any plants to show for it at the end of the day I’m okay with that!

My educational goals for this unit

I do hope that by the end of the summer Cash understands:

  • Plants grow from seeds and they need water, sun and soil to succeed
  • Composting is how we make our own soil by reusing and not wasting our food scraps
  • Worms help the soil and the earth
  • Look before you leap onto the ground and observe the awesomeness of nature around you

That’s pretty much it. I don’t need to actually grow anything other than his brain and love for being outside. I am just using the concepts of a garden and composting to achieve my educational goals. I am also keeping this unit as similar to all my other educational formats as possible for teaching the boys. By that I mean I’m establishing a lot of the same rules out in our “outdoor classroom” as I do inside on The Mess Mat. I chose a little garden space that is actually right outside our Mess Mat door! So the mental transition is much better for them than when they walk out our front door to go play.

 

 

The down side to the space I chose though is that it is half under a cover so it never gets rain, and it isn’t in a very sunny spot. Truth be told, we’re under a bunch of trees where we live, so there are NO sunny spots other than out in the middle of the field. But, as mentioned, I’m not really too concerned about anything growing.

How I plan my Units

With all units I build, I develop a plan that focuses around my “Magic 7” Instructional Methods. Children learn in a variety of ways. You actually never know which Instructional Method might stick for them as it relates to the content. Therefore, I know that for a solid, well-rounded educational collection of lessons I need to cover multiple variations of the same educational goal. My “Magic 7” Instructional Methods are areas of Differentiated Instruction. Sometimes I double up, sometimes I embellish and go crazy with the arts & crafts. Regardless, these are the seven methods I always teach with…

Magic 7 Development Goals

  1. Sensory Play
  2. Discovery Learning {Science}
  3. Math Concepts
  4. Toddlers in the Kitchen
  5. Fine Motor Development
  6. Gross Motor Development
  7. Arts & Crafts

Unit Scaffolding

I prepared the Hooligans for this unit in the late winter by taking them through a Mini Unit on Rainbows. You can consider those lessons and pre-planning too by taking a look at that whole unit HERE.

Reading List

I will actually be using quite a few different books in this unit since I plan to run it all summer, which is longer than most. I hope to cover subcategories such as worms, bugs, weather, and who knows what else. I will keep my running lists here for your reference:

Blog Posts

And away we go! Thank you again for being here. Please feel free to comment, ask questions and share pictures of your own Toddler School Units. I loved being tagged on Instagram when you use an activity or lesson! It truly makes my day!


Learn More about Toddler School and past Lessons/Units HERE


Hi There! I’m Kandice
Wife, WAHM and mother to 2 Hooligan boys making the most out of my Sweet & Sticky {not sure who is who yet… they change daily}
Life is what you make it and when you accept your Sweet & Sticky you can regain control of your chaotic #MomLife.
Before Motherhood I was never late, preached efficiency and even color coded my closet. Life changes after 2 Toddlers {obviously} so now I’m building new Small Systems, Organizing Mom Routines and Charting Schedules that keep our Team productive.
Join me for Toddler School with Cash & Wyatt
Follow along as I solve Mini Mom Life Problems
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Toddler School

Building our Compost Bin for Toddler School

Taking on the Composting adventure with Toddlers can be a daunting feat. It certainly helps to do your research before you get started. In my search for resources before planning the Toddler School Unit on gardening and composting I {of course} dove into the depths of Pinterest. I knew I wanted our compost bin to be clear so the boys could see into it, small enough for me to lift and shift into the sun {we’re under a thicket of trees where we live} and only big enough for our kitchen scraps.

Building our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost BinSo the search began for other gardeners who had success with this style of compost bin, and with toddlers. Did it even exist? Was I crazy for thinking this could be done on such a small scale? Nope. It turns out many people build this tiny “kitchen scrap” size composting system!

I read through many, many useful, educational and resourceful blog posts to glean out all of my information. My top posts came from Kara Carreero on Composting with Kids, Spark People on A Beginner’s Guide to Composting, Rhythm of Play on Composting with Kids: Closing the Circle {whom I actually follow her blog!}

If you want to know more about what composting is, its benefits and how to make bigger bins I highly recommend you visit them and review their resources. I am not about to reinvent any wheels and write a big post about why you should compost. Many people {like them above} have already done a fantastic job of that!

This post {and series} is about our adventure through the composting process. We’re already convinced it is a good idea. If you are too… tag along!

Today we’re building our Compost Bin

Of course, everything I do, even organizing rotting, decaying, organic material into a plastic tub, has to be done cute. I bought a Hefty tub at Target that was clear and had a dark lid. I decided a dark lid {as opposed to white} would help with the heat lost from the clear sides. We’ll see if that actually balances out…

Building our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost Bin. How to make a Compost Bin
 

Drill Holes! It is very important to ventilate your bin. I drilled holes on the bottom and the sides, and even eventually the lid. Air needs to circulate. It was also mentioned in one article that your dirt needs to touch THE ground so that bugs and worms can integrate themselves into your pile.

I used my Cricut {which I use for everything} to cut some vinyl letters and stick them on the bin. You can do this with regular stickers if you want. I made mine big because I wanted Cash to recognize the letters.

Building our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost Bin. How to make a Compost Bin

Now here is a crucial {I think} part. Among many of the articles I read a SCREEN of sorts to sift the debris and filter out the large pieces is highly recommended. Well I didn’t want to build a screen.  I’m going low-tech here. So I carried my Hefty Tub around Target to the closet organizing aisle and picked up a closet shoe rack.

Building our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost Bin. How to make a Compost Bin

Wouldn’t you know it? It fit upside down EXACTLY in my tub! The legs of it hung perfectly on the tub indentions and suspended the “screen” at about 50% {which we’ll get to later} How convenient is that! I had big plans to rig up cookie cooling racks from the Dollar Tree and some twine to pull it up, but what if the twine decayed?… Problem solved! Truly could not have been more simple! The dimensions were perfect!

Building our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost Bin. How to make a Compost Bin

Filling the Bin

Okay, now throughout everything I read about actually putting things into your bin, here are the main points I gleaned from everyone in a nutshell {which you can compost}

Math Step 1

The magic percentage that repeated was 60% Browns and 40% Greens {some more convoluted than others} among all of the rot pile building scholars. HERE is a fantastic article about Why Compost Piles Fail. I read a lot about balancing Carbon and Nitrogen ratios too… I won’t make your head spin with those… bottom line = 60% Browns and 40% Greens… well that was math Part 1

Math Step 2

In another post I read, it insisted that our bin only be 50% full for air circulation. That drops our ratio down to 30% Browns, 20% Greens… try to stay with me. I start rounding up and down here… this is Toddler School after all…

We’re going to start saying PARTS. 3 Parts Browns and 2 Parts Greens

I draw lines on my bin {because I want my damn Gold Star and I want to get it right}  I draw us lines for 10 through 50 percentage with my handy ruler.

Building our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost Bin. How to make a Compost BinBuilding our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost Bin. How to make a Compost Bin
 

Math Step 3

Part 3 of the ratio equation is that when you’re filling your bin, you are supposed to layer your “parts” like a sandwich with dirt. So, with that in mind I now know that ONE of my 3 Brown Parts is actually going to be spread out between each other part…. Boy this is getting confusing! But not really…

Building our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost Bin. How to make a Compost Bin

We’re doing this with Toddlers, and we’re playing in the dirt! End of complication.

My bin is made, our percentages are marked. We’ll let the boys get super dirty and have a lot of fun filling our bin next! I hope I simplified a LOT of information for you. It really sounds more complicated than it is. Just remember, the kids are going to LOVE it even if it doesn’t work!… There’s always next year!

We are done with our bin and ready with our 1 Part Brown of Organic Potting Soil to sandwich in with the boys after nap time! Catch us later!

Building our Compost Bin for Toddlers. Gardening with kids. DIY Kitchen Scrap Compost Bin. How to make a Compost Bin
Link Back to the Gardening Unit’s Main Post to start from the beginning!

 

Learn More about Toddler School and past Lessons/Units HERE

Like what you read?

Join us in Toddler School!

Hi There! I’m Kandice
Wife, WAHM and mother to 2 Hooligan boys, sharing my Sweet & Sticky Story of Motherhood and taking my Boys through Toddler School. We love to learn with Sensory Play, Discovery Learning and our favorite Subscription Box, Kiwi Crate! Join us for the fun!

 



Cotton N' Kandi

Cotton N’ Kandi Brand {Kid-tastic Apparel}

Welcome to my NEW Brand line for Baby & Toddler Crochet Apparel!

I have always been a crochet fanatic since I was young. I remember my mom making these amazing afghans with shell patterns and just staring at her work that hook in silence…. To create something so grand and seemingly spectacular with such practiced and patient effort became a great temptation for me. I don’t quite recall when I made my first “something” but it was a scarf, white with pink stripes at the end that I sold at a garage sale and was so thrilled that someone bought it! I was in middle school and my addiction was underway….

…It really took off in college for some reason. I have always been a multi-tasker and I think having something to do while “socializing” gave me something “productive” to do other than just sit around and stare at other college peers, which in my eyes at the times was LESS THAN productive. I guess if you know me very well you probably know that I just have to be “producing production” at all times! I can never be just doing nothing. I watch crime TV (Bones was written for me I’m sure!) because while I’m making a blanket, doing the daily crossword puzzle, making dinner, AND solving a crime, I feel like I didn’t waste an hour just watching TV… guilty pleasure extinguished 😉

Small Batch Manufacturer Registration Number: 026272-082015

Regardless, back to the point…. Now that I have a son my obsession with crochet has taken a new turn… naturally towards baby stuff!

August 2015 marked a new era for my crochet crafting in that we took a business leap. I’ve officially branded, registered with the government, been given my safety number and am ready to dedicate more time and energy to this part of my life.

I picked up a pattern book (I actually can’t read a pattern to save my life!) and just looked at the stitch pictures to start mentally preparing myself for this adventure. I came across a way to make a basic beanie and it just sort of exploded from there. Now I have altered the patterns, added some ears and voila! I have a whole bunch of options/collections that I now sell on Etsy with all profits going straight into my son’s 529 plan for college savings. Please support him (and my addiction) and take a look, or share anything you might like. There are a few baby toys, blankets and of course the classic scarf thrown in the mix too!

http://kelseajoannphotography.blogspot.com/



Baby Hat Collections…

Bunny Hats– Easter Basket Award Sales Record Set 2014! 

THANK YOU for supporting their COLLEGE FUNDS! All Hat sales directly contribute in their 529 College Savings Plans!
Update: Thanks to Hats, his first birthday Penny Party and of course family, Cash has his FIRST term of college already covered by his second Christmas!!