Thursday, May 10, 2012

Outside Afternoon! (and Sight-Words Candyland)

First.  Yesterday CAM and I snuck over without the boys and went to Target.  She has a gift card from her birthday when she got three of the same Strawberry Shortcake item (proof not that she has too much Strawberry Shortcake stuff, but that they just don't make enough options!), and I promised her last time we were in Target that we'd go back and buy a DVD.  Lo and behold, of all random coupons, we got a coupon in one of my magazines for $3 off a Strawberry Shortcake DVD!  Random, huh?!

But that's not the point of my story.  As usual, we found a few treats in the right-when-you-walk-in dollar section.  Yesterday's treat:  plastic, kid-friendly horseshoes.  I LOVE horseshoes!  And now I can play them with my five-year-old and two-year-old?!  SCORE!

So today, as part of my promise to myself and the kids and the universe to be better about doing stuff with the kids, and especially stuff outside, we went outside and played horseshoes!

Check out that blue horseshoe mid-air.  Snapped with my cell phone, no less! 

But even better is the "teeth" she has in her mouth ... and despite its appearance, the yellow horseshoe is also midair.
First-and-a-half, because I forgot this and am too lazy to go back and re-do the entire post.  My parents sent down those ridiculous-yet-hilarious ring pops that look like buck teeth. The kids finally got to eat them today (it's only been a month since Easter, so this isn't too bad -- still slowly allowing the loot to be dispersed!), and I took some silly pictures.

Okay, quite frankly, this picture creeps me out because she looks like one of the characters from the old Twilight Zone episode, Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder.  But she was happy, so I kept it.

 Second.  After that got old for WHM, we went on the back deck to check our garden.  I'd like to point out to you that not only is it thriving, but we have a bud on our red bell pepper plant -- which means there is soon to be a pepper!  AND, we have new growth on our little runt.  So yes, we managed (at least so far, don't discount the power of my black thumb!) to save the little guy in the red pot.

A bloom!  Normally there would be the beginnings of some sign of death ... instead, we have a bloom!  Wahoo!
Despite my apparent efforts to kill him, this little guy is coming back.  Hooray!
Third.  Also as part of my promise to myself and the kids and the universe to be better about reading and so forth, yesterday I picked up another Candyland game, and promptly turned it into a Sight Words game.  I've seen them pinned all over Pinterest, but no pin that I have seen has had the words they've used.  I have a list of 50 sight words from a fantastic local kindergarten teacher, and I typed them up in a very simple font -- not a kid-ish font, I can't stand those -- and printed them, cut them out, and simply taped them on the Candyland cards.   There are only 50 words on my list but there are 64 cards, so I repeated 14 words that I felt like we should really hammer home to start.  I could have found 14 additional words from the Dolch list or something, but I wanted to make the game a little easier for now.

My list of words:  PLEASE let me know in the comments if you can't see this or if it's a mess when you click on it.  I am still learning how to embed documents, but I wanted to have at least something up as soon as possible.

 So, how do you play?  Just the same as you play regular Candyland, except that to advance you need to read the word on the card.  If you can't read it, you don't get to move.  (I'm sure there are other variations, and until CAM learns all the words, we're going to modify this.  I think what we'll do is that for each card she draws, we'll talk about the word and name the letters.  As she gets better at recognizing them, we'll make it more challenging.   If you have other variations you've played or heard of, please leave a comment below, because I am definitely interested in making this work, and work well.)

I went out to a local kids' consignment store and got lucky and found Candyland on my first try.  (Even though we already own a Candyland, I wanted a "dedicated" game to keep in my office.)  But here's something super cool:  you can also just go to Hasbro and order replacement decks for $3 each.  That means that if you plan to use this in a classroom or even if you plan to make multiple versions (I can envision a letters and numbers one for WHM and a simple math one for CAM), all you really need are new decks of cards and not entire new games -- and that's kinda cool. I ordered three new decks for precisely those versions.

Okay.  I'm off to pick up WHM's birthday invitations -- can't wait to show them off!!



  1. As a mom of 2 young readers, I think this is a fantastic idea! Kids are going to learn more when the learning is fun! I'm going to try this with my youngest this summer!

    1. Oh, that is wonderful! Thanks for stopping by! I wish I could say the idea was my own, but the truth is that I could see the inspiration for this game on Pinterest (and Google), but not the actual word lists. So, I made my own version. :)