Ideas For Celebrating Winnie The Pooh Day (January 18th)

Winnie the Pooh Day in on the 18th of January. It’s actually A.A. Milne’s birthday, which is why the date was chosen.

In it’s Disney era, Winnie the Pooh has been cast as a character for baby-nurseries and babified for toddlers, but in truth, I think this has done them something of an injustice, with the stories being much more suited to early readers. They are clever, and funny and well worth dusting off for a quick evening read.Ideas For Celebrating Winnie The Pooh Day (January 18th)

As such, we’re learning around the theme of Winnie the Pooh, which means we’re using the topic, however loosely to underpin our learning. Below are our ideas for celebrating Winnie the Pooh Day. The list will grow and link to other pages as the day gets closer, but I’m populating it as I go along.

To give you something to get stuck into in the meantime, however, here’s a FREE PRINTABLE BOOKLET for you to download and print. It has all sorts of puzzles, games and suggestions for your Winnie the Pooh celebrations.Ideas For Celebrating Winnie The Pooh Day (January 18th)

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10+ Fun Resources For Big Friendly Giant Fans

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll know that it’s a big year for Roald Dahl this year. Not only is it the 100th Anniversary of the birth of the well-loved author (13th September 1916), but there’s also the new BFG movie that’s recently opened in cinemas. While the movie ends a little differently that the book, it’s still a lovely movie, and a great update on the old movie.

We love Roald Dahl and have done a lot of activities for Roald Dahl Day over the years, and I’m sure we’ll celebrate his birthday quite happily again this year – but to coincide with the new film, we’ll probably focus on The BFG this year!

Here’s a bit of a round up from around the world wide web – and from our own experience – of activities to do around The Big Friendly Giant.10+ Fun Resources For Big Friendly Giant FansRead more: 10+ Fun Resources For Big Friendly Giant Fans

Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day

Today was National Winnie the Pooh day, and my girls and I spent the day celebrating that willy, nilly, silly old bear.

Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh DayWinnie the Pooh has a very special place in my heart,because my mom used to love Winnie the Pooh, and we’ve visited Pooh Corner and Pooh Sticks bridge in Ashford, Kent, a couple of times, one of them to release a lantern after my mom died.

My kids love Winnie the Pooh too. Ameli’s first cinema experience (that wasn’t mum & baby cinema, and was in fact something actually for children) was Winnie the Pooh – and then there was her 2nd birthday party too… so you see – lots of reasons to love Winnie the Pooh and commemorate Winnie the Pooh day.

1. Winnie the Pooh Playdough

Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day

I used this playdough recipe, but doubled it and left out the cocoa powder, then split it into three parts for yellow, blue/grey and pink. I gave the girls a set of Winnie the Pooh cookie cutters and off they went

2.  Make Honey Cookies

Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day

These honey cookies are so delicious! They are superbly quick to make, and the kids like squishing them down. We left these plain, but my favourite is topped with glace cherries – the kids like them with chocolate.

3. Tigger Hop Game

Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day
It’s been so rainy and grim the last few days and we’re trying to get over and away from all colds and sicknesses so we decided to keep our fun and games indoors. With apologies to the neighbours downstairs, I put X’s on the floor with a start line and a finish square. The girls got to hop up and down the hallway from X to X, just like Tigger. This game was especially loved because I spend half my life telling them to STOP STOMPING!

4. Pooh Bear Picnic

Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day

If you go down to the woods today… we won’t be there, because we were staying indoors, as I said above. But we had to have a teddy bears picnic, and it had to include a lot of honey! So we made honey comb, honey muffins and honey cookies. And they were all delicious!

5. Quizzes and Puzzles

Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day

 

Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day Fun Ways To Celebrate Winnie The Pooh Day

 

 

Click on these printable worksheets to download and enjoy them!

Happy Winnie the Pooh day!

Charlie And The Chocolate Factory Activities – DIY Jazzies

I don’t know why, but as long as I can remember I’ve loved Jazzies. I really don’t know why – they are made from cheap chocolate, and full of Hundreds and Thousands (Nonpareils, to my American readers) that taste of nothing. When we decided to do Charlie and the Chocolate Factory for our home-ed Play & Learn theme, I knew we had to make our own Jazzies.

Initially I was going to pour the melted chocolate into muffin pans to make them perfectly round, but in the end I decided to just free-hand it and let the kids have fun. They don’t care so much for perfectionism!

The main thing here was to provide a selection of toppings for our DIY Jazzies, and as it happens I didn’t have any Hundreds and Thousands, so we went for chocolate sprinkles and chocolate twirls, Frozen snowflakes, shredded coconut, wafer flowers and popping candy. If I had any, we’d have added some chopped nuts and dried fruit too.

Charlie And The Chocolate Factory Activities - DIY Jazzies

I melted the chocolate at 50C for 3 minutes in my Thermomix, but you can do it in a microwave or on the stove (put the chocolate in a glass bowl that fits inside a pot. Put water in the pot, but the bowl in the pot and boil the water till the chocolate has melted. Be careful, the glass will be hot.)

While the chocolate is melting, lay out strips of plastic wrap. (I taped these down onto the table so the kids couldn’t lift them. On trays would be better as you can then move them out of the way.)

Once melted, spoon the chocolate out and place a tablespoon full at a time on the plastic. Let the children do the toppings – you don’t have to act too fast, it does take a few minutes for the chocolate to set.

Leave for 2 – 3 hours till the chocolate is firmly set, then peel off, and enjoy.

Charlie And The Chocolate Factory Activities - DIY Jazzies

Keep in an airtight container for up to a week, depending on the toppings you’ve used.

The better the chocolate, the better they’ll be. Doesn’t this just leave the small people feeling like chocolate inventors though? It’s a fun activity!

Charlie And The Chocolate Factory Activities - DIY Jazzies

Find more Charlie & The Chocolate Factory activities here.

The Carrot Cake Catastrophe – Stories And Cake Recipe {Book Review}

One of my friends told me once that she loved my blog, because I don’t post perfect crafts and that makes her feel like a normal mama when their crafts and projects don’t come out perfect. Well, this one is for everyone who ever has not-as-planned-cakes.

The Carrot Cake Catastrophe - Stories And Cake Recipe {Book Review}We received The Carrot Cake Catastrophe by Elizabeth Dale (Author) and Gemma Raynor (Illustrator) from Paragon a few months ago as part of the Paragon Book Buddies project and today we decided it was time to go read it.

Instead of making it into a standard round cake, however, we poured the cake dough into gingerbread man shapes, since our PlayLearning theme this week is around the human body

Well, it didn’t really work out. The dough is way too moist and the resulting cake way too crumbly for it to work that way. It was still absolutely delicious though. So our cake may have turned out a bit of Catastrophe too, but it was still way, way better than Grandpa’s cake from the book.

In this story, a little girl and her grandfather decide to make a cake for her mama’s birthday. That’s all fine and well, but with his glasses on Grandpa can read the instructions, but not identify the ingredients, so he ends up adding soap instead of butter, and so on. Yum. They head into the garden for fresh, juicy carrots, and stir them into the batter – without grating or chopping! It’s a recipe for disaster, for sure.

In the end the birds eat the cake – apparently they don’t mind the soap – and Mama saves the day with a previously baked cake.

At the end of the book there’s the recipe Grandpa and the little girl followed, with instructions, so you can make it at home too.

It’s a very basic carrot cake, making it ideal for little bakers. Even though I’m a very proud and happy Thermomix owner, I think it’s essential that Ameli and Aviya learn to cook the ‘old fashioned’ way, including weighing, measuring and a bit of elbow grease.

The sign of a great children’s book for me is when the girls remember it later. We had to walk to the shop for cream cheese for the icing, and Ameli laughed suddenly, saying she’s glad we didn’t put soap in our cake! She asked me what ‘bitter’ meant (I said it would probably taste bitter from the soap), and asked about the meaning of other words… I love when they learn without knowing they are.

An all round lovely story, great for preparing for birthdays as we are this week – can’t believe Aviya is coming up for two!  – and just a bit of fun and a laugh. Lovely.

 The Carrot Cake Catastrophe - Stories And Cake Recipe {Book Review}

 

Ideas For Dr Seuss’ Birthday {PlayLearning}

Our PlayLearning theme this week is Dr Seuss and a touch of World Book Day, we have a few books waiting to be read, so we’re going to work through them this week.  We are also huge Dr Seuss fans, and Ameli particularly loves them for bed time stories, so Dr Seuss is a great theme for us to repeat again, despite having done it once before already.

Ideas For Dr Seuss' Birthday {PlayLearning}Because of the multitude of Dr Seuss stories, there’s so much to do in this theme, it’s rather brilliant.

Crafts and Play 

Lorax mask

Truffula Tree Landscape

Lorax Pencil Holder

Lorax Puppets

Truffula Tree Waterless Snowglobe

Truffula Tree Hop (And other games)

Cat in the Hat Paper Plate

Horton Hears a Who Toilet Roll Craft

One Fish Two Fish Three Fish hand print craft

Family Foot Book

Green Eggs and Ham Bath

Hop On Pop Site Word Cards

Tweetle Beetle Play Rice

I Can Read With My Eyes Shut Glasses

The Sneetches Game

Cat In The Hat Paper Plate Craft Hats

 Food

Cat in the Hat Yoghurt

Marshmallow Truffalo Trees

Green Eggs And Ham

(Scrambled) Green Eggs and Ham

Cat in the Hat Fruit

Cat in the Hat lunch

Truffula Tree Fruit

Lorax Cheese Snack

One Fish Two Fish Savoury Crackers

 

Watch 

The Loraxand Youtube has been most helpful with movies too, such as: Green Eggs And Ham, The Cat in The Hat, and How The Grinch Stole Christmas (awesome drawing art)

Buy

There’s so much Dr Seuss stuff out there, that it’s hard to know what’s worth spending money on. We don’t have a definitive list by any means, but here are some of our favourites:

The Lorax Pop Up (US) – A beautiful pop up version of the story, with really funky interactive bits.

A Classic Case of Dr Seuss (US) – A case of books. We have this one. Ameli loves it.

I Can Do That Card Game (US) – A fun little card game, especially for a group of children.

Follow Luschka van Onselen’s board {Themes} Dr Seuss on Pinterest.
Ideas For Dr Seuss' Birthday {PlayLearning}

The Snowman – 24 Days of Christmas Crafts {Literature to Food}

The advent calendar book for day three was The Snowman, a much loved classic I always hear people saying they remember from their own childhoods. The first time I ever heard of it was when I was sent the book for review earlier in the year. Apparently there are two versions – one with no text, just images, and this one, a written story. I don’t know the original, but this one was kind of sweet, although I’m not sure about the message that it’s a good thing to sneak out and go to a dance with a random snowman! But my paranoia aside, the children love the story. This particular version came with a CD so there’s a song we got to listen and dance to a few times over too.
The Snowman - 24 Days of Christmas Crafts {Literature to Food}

Our craft of the day was to make meringue snowmen. You can find our recipes for making it the traditional meringues here, or for using the Thermomix here. I made three different styles of snowmen too – the first were piped as snowmen, the second as meringues and then stuck together in the icing phase and the third as flat figure of eight style snowmen. I preferred the ones we had to stick together in the end. They were the most manageable.

Not only did we have fun reading the story, but we also enjoyed baking and decorating together, and a lot of fun was had in the eating too. The Snowman - 24 Days of Christmas Crafts {Literature to Food}

And it may just be me, but I think it would make a fun gift too! A copy of the book, with a jar of snowmen, right?

The Snowman - 24 Days of Christmas Crafts {Literature to Food}

Foods, Activities and Crafts To Celebrate Roald Dahl Day

Celebrate Roald Dahl Day

It’s Roald Dahl day on Friday 13 September, (being his birthday) and while I’ve left it a little late to read all of the books to Ameli – and to be honest she’s still a little young for them – she does love The Fantastic Mr Fox movie, and also Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. We’re currently busy reading The BFG though, and she’s enjoying that.

Below are ideas for celebrating Roald Dahl Day. As we do them I may replace the links, but these are mostly to other people’s posts right now.

Update: Want to focus on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory? See this post!

You can watch:

Eat

You could go ahead and buy the Roald Dahl Revolting Recipes Book but there are also plenty ideas available online. How about trying:

Make and Do

Follow Luschka van Onselen’s board {Themes} Roald Dahl on Pinterest.