Oh, I could write a whole lot about toddlers and independence, but today I'm sticking with fun activities to do with toddlers for the USA's Independence Day.
When we talked about fireworks at circle, the children were quick to mention "Boom! Boom!" and "LOUD!" In fact, when I said we were going to make fireworks in a jar, one child put his hands over his ears! He was reassured when I whispered that they were quiet fireworks. However, if you are going to go and see the fireworks with a young child, I recommend bringing along a pair of ear plugs. It will be a more enjoyable experience for your child and you!
Now, art experiences that are not too loud...
* Bin/ Box: We use donated bins from the hospital. A shoebox would work, too.
* Paper : Cut to the size of the bottom of the bin/ box
* Paint: Use colors that blend well because they will!
* Balls: Golf ball or about that size. We use large beads. The hole in the bead holds a little extra paint. I've found ping pong balls a bit too light and they bounce out of the bin.
* Put the paper in the bottom of the bin
* Put the ball in a cup of paint and cover completely
* Remove ball and place in the the bin
* Instruct and model tilting and shaking the bin. Use appropriate vocabulary to describe how the child is moving the ball and open ended questions such as: "How can you make it go faster?" and "What does it look like now?"
* Remove the first ball and add a second color or put two balls in together. One child today said, "My balls are racing!"
* Soda Bottles: remove labels, add water, and cap. The water makes for a more gross motor experience and keeps the bottles from tipping easily.
* Paint: I reuse frozen entree trays as containers for easy dipping
Fireworks in a Jar
* Large Jar or Glass
* Food Coloring
* Put a 1-2 Tablespoons of oil into the cup
* Add a couple drops of food coloring using a few colors
* Mix the food coloring and oil with the fork.
* Pour the colored oil into the jar.