Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Road Trip Prep

So besides helping with the revamp of my moms group procedures and getting ready for Carter's arrival (nursery posts to come!!) I've been prepping for our big road trip. Here are a bunch of the cool things I've made and gathered to help keep a certain 33 month old busy the whole 14 hours we are on the road. Pinterest has been my friend but as usual I don't follow directions well and seem to have tweaked everything to my liking.

I printed out a bunch of dot activity pages. These are perfect for fine motor development in toddlers. On this trip we are planning to use stickers to decorate. Place a star sticker or circle sticker in each circle. At home we often use the bingo dauber markers, play dough balls, or puffs. Besides the fun animal sheets that will be colored once the sticker fun is done, we have some letter and number sheets too. I purchase these templates from Play at Home Mom for 5 dollars total. (all letters and numbers).

My train and car obsessed little boy would never want to spend time in the car without his beloved toys. For this fun I took the simple 1 dollar cookie sheet that we plan to use as with numerous activities. I printed some stock roadway and railroad tracks and cut them into various pieces. Then we headed to UPS and laminated the batch. With magnets on the back they will now stay on his sheet while he runs his cars.

Here is our travel pack of cars, planes, trains, and various other transportation fun!

Another fun medium besides paper to paint or color on is wood. JoAnn's has a great supply of little boy approved items. Nolan's favorite is this train or his birdhouse sitting here waiting to be decorated. I plan to have him use his washable markers on the wood for fun vibrant colors. Then we can hang it in the car or let him play with it on the train tracks he builds. Dual purpose!!

I've been stocking up on various already made coloring and art pages. The velvet ones should help him to have a more detailed picture when he is done as his scribbling won't show up on the black felt! I found lots of superhero play at various dollar areas (Target, JoAnn's, Dollar Store). Also shown here is a spiderman magnet set. You color the magnets then get to play with them on a skyscraper magnet board they provide. Clearance at JoAnn's rocks!

Along with the super hero coloring we plan to paint. Paint is a bit too involved for the car though so these already paint applied sheets are perfect. I placed a sponge with a bit of water in a small tupperware container and packed two brushes. With just water Nolan can now bring these to life!

Various magnet fun shown here includes letters and numbers, dinosaur magnets, and a magnetix set similar to blocks but from magnets!

 I finally had my ISpy book made with a shutterfly coupon. You can read more about this project here.

We also made a portable lego box!!

Next Nol will be practicing matching his letters. I did not do capital and lowercase matching because he is not yet ready for that but instead just plan to have him work on fine motor with the clips and talk about what letters he sees. He likes sorting and doing these projects on his own so I plan to hand it to him as is to see what he does. I have a bag for the clothespins ready but wanted to give him a headstart the first time he sees it!

 We made a fun non-messy sensory bottle with toothpicks and rice. The rice makes fun noises as it falls through the toothpicks!

Popsicle sticks and pip cleaner sorting. I only pulled a few from the container but using an upcycled oats container redecorated I made him a sorting box. I painted the area around each hole with a corresponding color. He loves to sort with a muffin tin so this will be similar. 

Marble maze! X marks the spot With this fun safe game the marble moves along a path until it gets to the other side.

I got Nolan one of the new Lego Duplo build and read stories. There is a board book inside and various duplo pieces with which you build the corresponding pictures. This one is a farm themes so lots of animals!

Magnet boards. I found these at a specialty toy store for very cheap! They are pirate and robot themes and come with a magnetic storyboard and lots of magnet pieces. He'll love making his own robots and playing pirates. I figure if the boards are hard to handle he can play with the pieces on his tray. 

Flashlight shapes. This nifty little flashlight has covers to make shadows. It's space themes so he can make the moon, rockets, etc. on the seat in front of him. Since Nol is rear facing he has the perfect platform to aim it at.

I also made him a travel pillow to keep his head comfy while he sleeps and his wedding tie! It's harder than you think to find a simple black toddler tie. 

 Here are all of his activities packed and ready to go!! I'll be sure to report back on how well each item worked to occupy some time. You can follow my road trip board on Pinterest for more fun ideas.

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