Monday, January 25, 2010

The Toddler Busy Book

I recently came across a blog that recommended this book, The Toddler's Busy Book by Trish Kuffner. So, I ordered it from the library and patiently waited for the book to come in.

Going to the library with AJ is always an experience. He is just venturing into the "twos". So, we usually have just enough time to run in and grab a new kids movie before AJ starts. He isn't bad, per say. He just doesn't understand inside voices...ok well, he does but he has a hard time using them. Thus, usually about the time we stroll through the front door and around the corner to the kids area, he spies the Spongebob stuffed doll and the excited screaming starts... "Spongebob...Mama...Spongebob..Look!"

Next, off he runs to the movies and books to correct their order. When we try to proceed to the checkout, AJ cordially informs the librarian that she is not moving fast enough and that to check out the movies he is currently holding she must pry it out of his Kung Fu grip. Yet, every time she makes a move he screams... ""

Now, this being a small library his banter with the librarian echoes through the whole place. I can feels the patrons beedy little eyes glaring at me as I attempt to gain control. I give the James DVD I brought, a car, a redirect...a bust! At the same time, the librarian works frantically to check us out before we have the whole place in an uproar!

I do this to myself and the poor librarians on a weekly basis. For the most part, I order all our books and movies in advance, so, AJ has a small window of time. We talk about what is expected prior to entering and I give him a bit of time to roam and play before we leave, but...every time the ending is the same. Some days are better than others.

I was excited when this book came in and couldn't wait to get it home. When i first opened the book, I was immediately disappointed. It was one of those books with page after page of ideas, no real rhyme or reason to the collections. Just a plethora of me this is overwhelming. This means I can't flip through, I have to actually sit down and comb through each page to see what activities are usable. I much prefer books organized by what the activity is teaching. For example, to work on colors, try these activities. Yet, after having the book for about a week, I locked myself in the bathroom to comb through the book.

Why the bathroom you ask? It is the only place I can lock myself away where I can have complete peace and quiet. Sad, but a reality for many moms. Once I got into the book, I was pleasantly surprised.

Here are just a handful of ideas I found:

1. Clothespin poke: Flip an egg carton over, so the egg holders are facing up. Cut a quarter size whole in each egg. Then, have your toddler try to put the clothes pin in the wholes.

2. Balloon Play: Attach a paper plate to a paint stir stick, the blow up a balloon and throw it in the air and have your toddler try to catch it. Or, more likely, encourage your toddler to bat the balloon around.

3. Colored Ice cubes: Fill and freeze colored water in the ice cube trays. Add the cubes to bathtub and play away. (this can also be done with jello)

4. Wax Paper Art: Mix glue and dye (I recom. temper paint instead), then let your toddler paint it onto a piece of wax paper. Then, put another piece of wax paper on top. Allow to dry then hang your wax paper art in a window!

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