This time of year always seems to put me in a funk because the anniversary of my brother’s death is in August, followed by his birthday in September. I wrote a post for the anniversary but didn’t publish it. Maybe I’ll post it for his birthday. So, I’ve been trying to keep myself busy with some projects because that seems to help.
I’ve been reorganizing our school area and trying to get things ready for school starting. After my parents moved out and we moved our stuff back downstairs, everything ended up all over the place, and I still hadn’t gotten a chance to organize everything. Our school area is half school area and half family room. So the room houses school books, other books, board games, and toys.
Although all our school stuff was down here last year, we ended up doing most school work upstairs at the dining room table since Mike was downstairs working from home in the laundry room/ pretend office. Since he will still probably be working from home in September, we might be back to school upstairs, but I still think it will be exciting to get this all organized either way.
So this insane wall of bookcases was my first task this past weekend. Here’s the before photo….
and you’ll have to wait until next weekend for an after because I wasn’t able to finish. 😆
However, some progress was made and I was able to sort through all of our non-fiction books and some of the fiction. I made some labeled shelf dividers to hopefully make it easier to find the books we’re looking for. Time will tell how well that will work. Animal Lover was already book shopping and sticking things back anywhere, so it might take us awhile to get used to.
I’m hoping to finish organizing the rest of the room this weekend. I’ll come back with an after photo, maybe that will motivate me to get it done!
My other project this week was getting some independent activities ready for the kids for school time. Mostly for Purpelicious, but some for the other two as well in case they need something to do while I’m helping someone else.
I decided to fill this ten drawer rolling cart that we had with activities, one in each drawer and I’m planning to switch them out each week, or longer depending on how long things hold her attention.
So I’ve been dong a lot of printing and laminating. I love laminating. I could laminate all day. Do you think that’s a job? Professional laminator? It’s so relaxing and fulfilling. Seeing the paper go in all regular and come out all nice and shiny and reinforced. Ahh.
Okay, anyway, here’s a look at what I stuck inside the drawers:
Addition Flower Puzzles
I printed these from The Stem Laboratory website. Each flower has a number and each petal has an addition equation. You can find them here.
Say it, Build it, Write it
Next drawer contains a say it, build it, write it worksheet I made a few years ago that is laminated so it can be used as a dry erase sheet. There is also a dry erase marker, magnetic alphabet letters, and craft sticks that have sight words written on them.
Build a Flower Letter Sound Sort
These have letters for the center of the flower and each petal has an object on it that is sorted by beginning letter sound to make a flower. These came from This Reading Mama, and you can find them here.
This drawer has kinetic sand and some little Safari Ltd figures. Some flowers, butterflies, birds and insects. I think it looks like Purpleicious also threw a cat in there.
Bear Counter Pattern Strips
These pattern strips from The Measured Mom can be used with counting bears. I laminated them and hole punched them and attached with a book ring. You can find them here.
Flower Cutting Practice
I made this cutting practice worksheet and decided to stick with the flower theme that seemed to be going on. These are so simple, but Purpelicious LOVES cutting these type of sheets and they keep her entertained for awhile. I actually already need to print more because she kept getting into them as I was trying to fill the drawers. I’ll put a link to download these at the bottom of the post.
Rhyming Clip Cards
These rhyming clip cards came from Target dollar section last year before school. I love the concept of these, but they aren’t self correcting and because they are double sided, I can’t make them self correcting without being confusing. Perhaps I’ll need to make my own soon.
Flower Counting Mats
We also had a counting activity from the target dollar section but it only went up to 10, and I wanted some that went up to 20, so I made these flower counting mats. (I’ll put a link to download at the bottom of the post)
I had intended on them being used with Pom poms, but Purpelicious decided she wanted to use the counting bears and also wanted to match the colors.
Melissa and Doug See and Spell
This was a puzzle that we had that fit nicely in the drawer. They have double sided puzzles that use the wooden letters to spell the pictured words.
These are similar to pattern blocks, as you can use them to recreate patterns from the provided cards, but you can also stack them. Some of the configurations are actually pretty difficult, so I think they will stay challenging and entertaining for a long time for all of the kids.
Hopefully these activities will keep Purpelicious entertained for a little while, however she wanted to try everything out as I was preparing it, so I might need to switch up the drawers before we even start school!
I have a few more ideas of what I will stick in the drawers, but would love more suggestions. What kinds of activities would you stick in the drawers?
Click on the button or picture below to download.