Showing posts with label LEGO. Show all posts
Showing posts with label LEGO. Show all posts

Small World Play: Ancient China

Friday, February 5, 2016

Gong Hi Fa Cai!  It’s the Chinese New Year tomorrow and Mavi and I are currently learning about the Ancient China  (using STOW Vol 1 as read along book). With these, we set up another small world play which is inspired by the history of China.  Here’s what Mavi and I assembled.   Last month, we assembled an Australian Outback-inspired small play and it was a total hit!  This month, the boys are enjoying their free play with our new small world tray!

Our Favourite Toys for 2 to 7 Years Old

Thursday, November 26, 2015

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“As parents and grandparents, we think that we are showing children we love them by giving them things.  In fact such practice, in and out of itself, may send them the wrong message.  Children may conclude that if people give you things, they love you.  If receiving things tells you that you are loved, the next logical step is to measure self-worth by what you have, not by what you are.  The reality is that very young children can only truly love one doll, one stuffed animal, and a few toys at a time. This experience provides a basis for adult life where one must learn to cherish one spouse, one family, one life, instead of fantasizing that it is possible to ‘have it all’.”  - MONTESSORI FROM THE START

We don’t have a lot of toys at home.  Mavi just like two kinds of toys: LEGO and dinosaur/animal figures, that’s just it.  All through the years, I don’t splurge nor buy toys as we don’t have the budget for it. I consider them as luxury so I just gave toys to Mavi as presents on his birthday and Christmas.  But because we “home” school, I purchase learning materials that my kids see as “toys” but in reality they are NOT really toys.    And because I am frugal, I buy toys that they can grow with, MULTIPURPOSE and something that they can play together.   So let me share with you the kids’ favourite things in the house.  These are the toys that we have in the house, except for the ones in my “wishlist and basket”.  These toys are being played day in and day out by the boys.



LEGO, DUPLO and PLAYMOBIL.  Need I say more? These are the favourite in the house. We have plenty of LEGOs as this is Santa’s favourite present EVERY Christmas for 4 years!  And Vito’s Duplo and Playmobil were brought from the local store when they were on 50% off. I would never get them for a whole price! Vito is now snapping bricks together and loves the Playmobil people.  Both of my boys spend hours and hours playing with these toys.  They never get tired of them.  Perfect toy for creativity, concentration and developing fine motor skills!

For Playmobils, we have castles and pirates. They’re Mavi’s favourite toy and can play with them for hours!

My son loves the LEGO CLASSIC Bricks.  He doesn’t really like those with premade designs as he always wanted to design his own thing. So I highly recommend that you buy the basic LEGO BRICKS especially if you are getting your first Lego.  Having a plate is also good. 

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miniLUK and BambiniLUK.  Mavi and I looooves this! We can’t get enough of answering all the booklets, especially those tricky ones!  I bought the Starter Pack and bought the advanced booklets separately.  There’s a version for younger kids, the BambiniLUK and some friend in Instagram said that they like it. Mavi is like “Mom, its making my brain tired LOL”



Montessori Botany  and Zoology/Insect Puzzles, Montessori Puzzle Maps.  I invested on these this year and it was worth it! I have puzzle loving kids, and Vito is currently addicted to them.  Aside from educational, these puzzles are also perfect for pincer grasp practice.  Mavi on the other hand is obsessed with my Asia and Europe puzzles.  He loves geography, loves to learn about countries and their locations.  Tower High Learning is my favourite Montessori shop as of the moment and this is where I purchase my materials.



Schliech Animal Figures and Safari Toobs are also an all time favourite in the house. The uses of these figures include imaginative play, learning about animals, habitat play, exploring landmarks and just about anything!  You see these mostly in my post!  When Vito was younger, I made him use Schleich animal figures because they are bigger but now that he has overcome his mouthing, he uses both Schleich and Safari Toob. Mavi is obsessed with dinosaurs, and he uses them now as characters for his homemade videos LOL.   Now he uses both types for play and learning.




Hape Uppercase, Lowercase and Number Puzzles.  With Mavi, I used the Melissa and Doug Magnetic letters (I still have them) and they were really really loved.  Now the problem is Vito mouths things and I made Vito use it, the sticker of the letters were removed.  So I looked for an alternative alphabet toys for us to use and I discovered these amazing puzzles from Hape. They are WORTH-IT! We love using them in anything, from learning letters, puzzles to stacking! Yes, Vito loves to stack these together! We also use it to sort out colors!  Multi-purpose indeed!  But if you have older kids, Melissa and Doug Magnetic Letters are as good as well. 

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Because I love to cook (Asian and Italian), the boys also love to pretend cooking with me using these Melissa and Doug cooking toys.  They can play for hours with these!


M-cro Maxi Scooter.  And I just have to include this!! Because they play with this scooter in and out of the house! Mavi uses this to school and Vito uses this indoor for scooting practice. I love that it is sturdy and kids can easily balance!


And of course, nothing beats classic toys like balls, cars and PlayDoh!  My boys wouldn’t complain if they receive any of these this Christmas.


Magnatiles. Rave reviews everywhere but I just couldn’t bring myself to purchase these tiles or can’t even justify it Sad smile  Maybe when they’re 50% off I would probably get one for the boys!


Unit Block.  I know that the boys will love this as well.  They can build and create so many things with this but the price is just too much for me.  I still have to think about this a million times.

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Beleduc Puzzles.  My puzzle loving kids will love these puzzle series, especially the Your Body Layer puzzles!


Letter ‘t’ Sound Activities for Toddlers

Saturday, November 21, 2015


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Vito’s activities last week revolves around the letter ‘t’.  As you all know, we’re working with letter sounds for a while and funny how he’s able to name alphabets using their sounds these days instead of their names LOL.    The unit is not just actually a week’s work, but it took us 2 weeks TO get over with the materials and activities, because Vito kept using them! Let me share with you activities we did to explore and learn objects with the letter ‘t’ sound.

Lettet T Object Basket.  Let’s start with our object basket.  I filled it with 3-4 objects starting with letter t that Vito uses a  lot at home like torch, telescope/binoculars, teeth and Titanic LEGO made by Mavi.  Then added a few letters like this foam letter from Munchkins (Vito used to bite these!) and the all time favourite letters from Hape.


Train Shape Cards.  I made these! I’m so happy on how it turned out.  The train plus the DIY air dry clay shapes are currently Vito’s favourite activity. He loves matching the shapes to that in the train! 

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That’s his brother’s sleep mask (from Emirates), which is his favorite accessory as of the moment.


Color Sorting using Transport Counters.  The counters are from Learning Resources and this is one of our favourites!  The train cards are DIY: using a train coloring image, I printed it in different colors of cardstock and laminated it. 

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He worked on them but doesn’t stay long. As I previously said, color sorting is NOT his favourite thing as of the moment.  But even so, I still would introduce different kinds of color activities just in case he might find his interest.


Counting.  Vito loves to count, it’s like effortless in my part to make him count and identify numbers.  He counts on his own and is always giddy whenever he sees numbers.  So this turtle activity is his favourite.  We just don’t have enough turtle figures to count up to 10 LOL.  The turtle counters are from Safari Toob.  We previously worked on trees as well for our letter t unit. Check it out here Smile

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Brushing of Teeth Teeth.  Our model of mouth/teeth is just so awesome! Vito is fascinated with this and loves brushing it with his toothbrush LOL.  This is a wonderful practical life activity, especially to those little ones who are hesitant to brush their teeth Open-mouthed smile  Know where you can get these teeth model here.


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Letter t

A Continent Study of AFRICA for Kids

Monday, February 16, 2015

It’s a month of Africa Continent study in the house.  Mavi enjoyed learning about this beautiful continent, its geography, exploring the different places and landmarks, the wildlife and habitats and of course the different culture and traditions that make Africa unique!

A Continent Study of AFRICA for Kids

The Study of Ancient Egypt

Friday, February 13, 2015

Here’s a collection of activities for Ancient Egypt Study.  We’ve been using the books The Story of the World Vol 1 and The Usborne Ancient World [] as our guide and references. This is the first time we’ve ever had an Egypt Study and I was very happy of how Mavi showed so much interest.

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The Desert.  Learning all about the desert and the environment of Egypt.  We used oatmeal to represent the sand and the figures seen here are from Safari Toobs.DSC_0298 (2) 

Mummification.  We tried to apply what we’ve learned of how mummies are made.  Here we prepared a few spices and a tissue wrap to embalm our skeleton model (sorry we did not have any human model LOL). So after wrapping the body, we placed it in sarcophagus (box) and added jewels for the buried King to bring with him in the after life.mummificationFamiliarization with the Egypt Map and the Nile River.  We used the worksheet from  The Story of the World Vol 1 to recreate the map in a painting.  This will familiarize the child of Egypt’s geography .  See how Mavi made his Nile Delta and the river met in the Mediterranean Sea.

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Ancient Egypt Toob.  These are fantastic!  The figures are so detailed and Mavi loved examining each one.  Here, we are learning about each figure (vocabulary) so he’s researching in the internet and the book what each means/represent.  The cards are from Memorizing the Moments.DSC_0966

Pyramids. Mavi recreated the pyramids using his LEGO. That’s supposed to be three pyramids, but Vito played and broke the smallest one.


Papyrus.  We also made this using parchment paper! See how we did it here!

And that’s how we study Ancient Egypt. Next year, when we revisit our World History lessons, we’ll dig a little bit deeper on this subject :)  Hope you like this post. Have fun!

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The Nile River

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


Continuing our World History study, we read about the people of Egypt and the richness of the Nile River.  We pinpoint the location of the river in the map and how the civilization of the Egyptians started in this great river.

After reading Chapter 2 of the SOTW, we proceeded immediately with the mini-projects it suggested. One of which is creating a model of the Nile River.  We could have done this outside, but the weather has been really terrible this week so we made use of our art crafts at home and whatever we could find to make our model as close to the description of the river.

Below in the picture, Mavi using blue crepe paper for the river forming a delta going to the Mediterranean Sea.  Here we discussed what is a “delta”.  A good review of our landform lesson.


He added some playdough to plant our mini trees (from our front yard) and made pyramids out of LEGO bricks.


I added accent to his project by painting the base with green paint to represent some lush farmlands. And this completed his Nile River Project!


Next I will be sharing our map work and the first mummies :D

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