Do you already know about busy bags? They are super-awesome-contained kits of amusement for little people. [Related: 5 preschooler busy bags] Our guest contributor, Jennifer Marshall Pesetsky, has two new ones to share today.
Plane rides are perhaps the most stressful thing for me to prepare for. Since we don’t fly frequently, and because my toddler develops and changes all the time, I never know what mood she will be in for the flight. Will she be content sitting and reading? Or, will she need many activities throughout the trip? Will she make friends with another passenger who will keep her busy and amused? To deal with many potential situations, and because I’m a crafty mommy, before we flew to Atlanta in December, I created four toddler busy bags.
These are not my original ideas; influenced by pinterest, I made them myself. Here are two of them:
To make these, you need:
- Craft sticks. I found a bunch at our local craft re-use store – East Bay Depot For Creative Reuse
- Felt. I bought eco felt in different colors from Michaels
- Sharpies in different colors. I like the fine point
- A button (optional if you want to make the bag)
- A sewing machine or hand sewing supplies.
To make the red popsicle, I cut out a piece of red felt in the shape of a rectangle. You may have to do some experimentation to figure out what size rectangle will work best on your popsicle sticks. Then, fold the rectangle up – sew the 2 sides together. Then, flip them inside out so the seams wouldn’t show. On 2 sides of the popsicle sticks, I drew a dot of the color; on one side I wrote out the color (red), and on the last side I wrote out the flavor that I thought that color popsicle would be (cherry). Repeat for the other colors.
To play, the kid matches the felt part of the popsicle to the appropriate popsicle stick and puts them together. Kids of different ages and abilities can play because kids who can read can match by word or flavor, and younger kids can use the color of the dots. My daughter also got to use the bag to practice her buttoning skills.
To make these; you need:
- Craft sticks again
- Little velcro circles
- A sharpie
- A zippered bag (or supplies to make one)
To make, Create your shapes out of the popsicle sticks; I created a straight line, a triangle, and a square and affixed the velcro sticky things to each end to keep them attached. Then with the sharpie, I drew a picture of the shape and wrote the name of the shape. Finally, I took them all apart, put them in the bag.
To play, my daughter got to practice making shapes. She also got to use the zipper on the bag which was hugely popular.
Thanks so much to Jennifer for sharing her tips and crafts today. Jennifer Marshall Pesetsky lives in Berkeley, CA with her husband, her almost 3 year old daughter, and blogs at www.berkeleymommy.blogspot.com. She has many great ideas!