Friday, July 20, 2012

Light Table Play

We converted a train table into a light table a while back. 

Sensory play is important for all children and has been proven to relax and calm.  The amazing glow from the light table is a great way to optimize sensory play.  The light table adds a different dimension to play and the opportunities for its use are endless.  There are various toys designed for light play but they are not required.  Max has enjoyed using the light table for several different Maxtivities so far.  It easily converts back to a trusty train table, simply lay the train panels over the plexi glass.

Here he is playing with water beads and floral stones on the light table.

 This year we colored eggs on the light table.  The food coloring looked really cool!

 Using a dropper to mix colors on paper towels.
Below we made cloud dough on the light table.  By adding a clear plastic bin you can mix material without a giant mess.  Finger painting also works great inside the bin.
 These colored window blocks are a lot of fun.  He likes to pretend they are buildings and homes.
 We even planted our garden seeds on the light table, not necessary but fun.

I got the light table conversion idea from pinterest.  You make a simple light panel with some Christmas lights and a large clear storage tote.  Have fun!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Kayaking with Max

Stephen and I have enjoyed kayaking together for several years.  Since Maxton was born in October of 2009 we had not been on the river at all.  This summer we cleaned our boats, bought The Boy a life vest and have reclaimed one of our favorite hobbies.  It's even more fun with our little guy in tow.

We have even got Maxton's Mamaw and Papaw into it.  Here are some photos of a family float trip.  The boys are Maxton's first cousins Caden age 3 and Braydon 2.  They had a blast on the river and camping after our float.

Cooling off in the North Fork of the Holston., nature, fun.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Masking Tape Painting

Max loves to paint, mostly he just paints and mixes colors until the entire paper or canvas is covered.
I love his paintings they are so colorful and abstract.  He has just recently started naming his paintings and drawings, and I know it won't be long until he starts drawing better figures and shapes. 

One variation we love is using tape and/or stickers on our canvas. 
 It is simple to do and produces an awesome effect. 

Simply tape off a design on your canvas and then let your kid paint over the entire surface.  Let paint dry and then peel off your tape to revel the white, unpainted parts of the canvas. 

 These make great wall hangers and gifts for friends and family.

Painting in your underwear is optional.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Sand Prints

I couldn't wait to get to the beach to try this Maxtivity.  Making sand prints is super easy and a great way to document your little ones trip to the beach . 
You will need: Plaster of Paris, water, a sand bucket and something to stir with.
Fluff up some sand and press your kid's hand or foot down to make an impression at least an inch deep.  Young children will need help pressing each finger and toe in deeply.  Here you can see Maxton's hand and foot print molds in the sand.

 Mix the plaster as instructed on the box, usually 1 part plaster to 2 parts water (ocean or lake water is fine).  The mixture should be the consistency of gravy.  Pour into your sand molds and let dry completely (at least 1 hour more if possible).  Below Savannah is poring the plaster into our sand molds.
When dry dig out your mold and Ta-Daa you have a tiny, sandy hand print.  I'm putting mine in a shadow box with beach photos and shells we collected on our trip.


I am finally doing it....I have wanted to share my loves of parenting, teaching and photography in a blog for a while now. 
Welcome to Maxtivities, I hope you are inspired to connect with the children in your life through play and exploration.