Chasing Cheerios

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Toddler Activity Bags

After reading Megret's post about Preschool Activity Bags, I started thinking about making toddler activity bags. Since we are going to the Bahamas on Friday in a small, 6 person plane I decided that I better go ahead and make a few bags to take with us. I got a little carried away! Once I started thinking of ideas, I just couldn't stop :) Here are the ones I've made so far:

Photo magnets
finger puppets
Sorting wacky macaroni
Putting miniature babies or smooth stones into individual boxes. This activity teaches 1-to-1 correspondence, and I think O will LOVE it since she loves babies and all things "niney."
Collage bag- glue stick, foam paper, note cards, stickers, paper punches, strips of construction paper
Stringing noodles to make a necklace. I added a pipe cleaner "needle" to the end of the shoe string to make it easier for O to use.
Mini containers of playdoh and a few playdoh tools
Miniature Mrs. Potato Head. O is going to be so excited to see a "niney" Potato Head!
Mini, reversible felt board
The other side of the felt board
Color sorting with bears
Open and close activity bag.
Puzzle activity bag. These puzzles came from a cutting book for children. I laminated the pictures then cut them out to make puzzles.
The last bag is not pictured. It contains a box of washable crayons (I don't want her coloring the plane walls!), notecards, and sticky notes.
Here's the hard part...which ones do I take with us on our trip? Clearly, 13 is too many. The flight lasts anywhere from 3 hours to 4 and a half hours depending on who I ask, and O will probably sleep at least an hour or two. I'm also taking books to read and snacks to eat. 5 or 6 activity bags shoud be more than enough. I just can't decide which ones. What do you think? Which bags do you think your child would enjoy?

48 comments:

  1. i particiapated in a activity in a bag swap on my march boardon babycenter! i got 37 bags and love them all! they are great and even though she is only 2 ( and 2 months) she can do them and is learning all kinds of things!

    i would take all just in case if you have the room you never know what will keep thier attention and what won't! especiallly in a new enviroment!

    for sure i'd take the: potato head, the feltboard, color sort bears and the open close thing ( you can put snakc in the clear container and she will be entertained for a while!

    have a great trip and enjoy your bags! you did a great job!

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    1. THIS IS SUCH A GREAT SITE...I AM GOING TO MAKE SEVERAL BAGS OF EACH IDEA AND:
      GIVE AS GIFT TO MOTHER W. SMALL CHILDREN...
      MAKE SOME TO SELL AT MY CHURCH BAZAAR...
      MAKE FOR REWARDS TO NURSERY SCHOOL TEACHER...
      AND MORE.

      THANK YOU SO MUCH!

      Delete
  2. I'd be worried about playdoh on a plane. My kids is unusually neat, but even he drops quite a bit of playdoh when he's playing with it. So I'd skip that one.

    I'd bring the collage bag, the string noodles, the open and close, the felt board, and the puppets.

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    1. I brought party-pack size play dough on a plane once. The kids were surprisingly neat with it. It turned out to be a great sensory stress reliever.

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  3. If you brought them all you would be sure to have plenty to do during any down time on your trip. What great ideas!

    I may have to borrow some for our trip, we are driving from Michigan to Minnesota.

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  4. What a wonderful idea! I would probably leave the playdoh and the paper punch at home since those can get messy.

    I would definetly take the potato head, feltboard, open close thing and the necklace maker.

    This is my first comment on your blog. I have been lurking for quite awhile and I just LOVE your ideas. Thanks for all of the wonderful ideas.

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  5. I love these! I agree, the only one I'd really be worried about on a plane is the playdoh.

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  6. These all look like such fun! The pipe cleaner "needle" is clever... They are small - are you sure you can't just take them all?? :) Good luck deciding - have a great trip!

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  7. I also think you could take them all, but what if you pick a set number you'd like to take, and give O some choices? Sometimes I just ask my daughter to choose what she'd like to do. Granted, that isn't a fool-proof idea, but it might be interesting to see what she picks!

    I really like the idea. I might need to make some preschool activity bags.

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  8. Super fun ideas here, have a great trip!!

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  9. I love these ideas! Where is the post you mentioned about Megret's Preschool Activity Bags? I would love to learn some more.
    Inspiring post!

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  10. Amanda- I just added the link to the post. Sorry I didn't put it in sooner :)

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  11. I am just catching up with your blog. You are such an inspiration. You have great ideas and post them very elegently. Thanks for all the resources you are sharing :)

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  12. What a super cute idea! I love it & I can't wait to create my own version. :)

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  13. I've been trying to come up with ideas for my kids - we're going to be spending 6 days driving. I'm planning on taking a mini chalk board or one of those magnetic drawing boards for each kid, as then they can draw without making a mess / me having to worry about them decorating the car...

    My best advice is to take lots of snacks and take whichever activities you think will last the longest. My kids used to like matchbox cars and things like that for making up imaginary games on the plane - probably because it gave them a chance to fidget. I like the bags idea for keeping things together - trying to pick up the small stuff that gets spilled is awkward in the confined space of a plane.

    Enjoy your trip!

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  14. I was looking for some ideas just like these!!! Thank you so much for sharing!
    Have a wonderful time on your trip!

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  15. Wow! That's a brilliant idea.

    And what a great blog you have!

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  16. Great ideas! Thank you! (I am so not taking playdough in my car tho! ha ha!)

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  17. Great! We made traveling felt boards a while ago and my kids loved them. Also took a necklace-in-a-bag on our trip with Cheerios to string. Worked well since they knew they could eat it when they were finished!

    http://myplumpudding.blogspot.com/
    2008/05/traveling-felt-boards.html

    http://myplumpudding.blogspot.com/
    2008/06/3-easy-projects.html

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  18. Great ideas and nice site. Have a great trip.

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  19. Love, Love, Love it! I saw the link on The Craft Crow and thought it was great! I left a comment on her site too and here it is. My 2 1/2 year old would love this, even on a quick trip to Target!

    Oh and how about for dinners out? He shouldn't get bored with all these options which would make for a more peaceful dinner for my husband and me.

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  20. I really like the collage one, drawing one, and both of the sorting ones! I don't have a kid of my own, however, I think of me back in the toddler days. I like those the best. Maybe you should make a lego one. :D
    http://scrappin-a-rose.blogspot.com/

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  21. I loved this idea, and used it last week for our vacation to keep my 20 month old busy on a 5 hour flight. Playdough turned out to be a huge hit and wasn't that messy after all. I got some dough in containers that had characters imprinted on the lids. We kept handing her an imprinted piece of dough (e.g, one had a duck, another had a bear), which she collected. Then she would "accidentally" squish it, and hand it to us to create again. Stickers & magnets were other great distractors.

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  22. I have a 2 year old and your site has been such an inspiritation to me - she doesn't go to school and I am in the process of thinking of homeschooling - i have been searching the internet for months to find activities to do at home with Keira ... finding your site has been like finding gold - please keep adding your ideas - i love them!

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  23. Just now finding this...it is so cool!! Thanks for sharing...I plan to make these for my rambunctious and curious and easily-bored four year old son! :0)

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  24. I saved this post way back when you wrote it,
    now we are driving from the UK to germany, & I am so thankful for all these ideas!!!

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  25. I love the open/close bag! How awesome!

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  26. I too like to make my own Bags

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  27. This was on my mailing list and I linked to you on my blog.
    I am making a 28 hours trip with a 27 month old very soon so this page and your pics were very very helpful! Thank-you!

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  28. Quite impressive, I just loved it, keep posts like this coming!

    Amber

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  29. ditto to the Playdoh comments, that's too messy. if you're sure you can't take them all, then I would only take the relatively flat things and leave the plastic containers home. You can out the attachment on your vacuum cleaner and suck the air out of the bags to make them flatter ;)

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  31. Just wanted to comment since I have referenced this post so many times, either myself or sending others to check it out. Such a great idea! The possibilities are endless!

    I've participated in two activity bag swaps where we got 12 or so bags in return, and now I am making a bunch as part of a "toddler activity bag basket" for an auction I am attending. These bags were so helpful to keep my oldest (then 2) entertained while I nursed and tended to my newborn twins. Now, my twins are getting into them! Fun!

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  34. This is a great blog with excellent posts and links.
    thanks for sharing.(",)

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  35. I like this bag idea. I started to put everything matching inside them, and my daughter loves them, especially the good ones with a zipper...

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  37. I LOVE these! Thank you thank you for the great ideas! Are these all gallon bags?

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  38. I am totally obsessed now with Activity bags!! what a fantastic idea!!!

    I can't wait to get home and start creating!!!! Thank you AGAIN!! for another wonderful idea KJ :)

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  39. This reminds me of two things from childhood. Mr.Potato head and loot bags from birthday party's.

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  40. I love your activities. Is there any way that you can make your pictures bigger for pinterest. I think I have read that it can be done, but I don't know how. My name is Cassie Long. longbcl@aol.com

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  41. INCREDIBLE THINKING!! You did really making sense. My little baby girl like different things to do and I think this will be enjoyable for me also when I'll see she is doing this.

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  42. I seriously recommend the edible necklace one use colored Cheerios so they can do patterns, magnetic drawing boards are great because its completely mess free, craft sticks with Velcro on each end both sides so the can build or make shapes, and a bag with mixed dried fruit and a board with just a circle drawn in it so they can make edible faces. I have 4 kiddos and entertaining them is a must sometimes, this stuff is great for lengthy waits at dr offices too!

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  43. Wow, great to find this site! Was worried my independent 15 mo would be really miserable on the plane... Made a few of these items and we tried them out today, she loved them! Thanks for sharing...

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  44. Such creative ideas - I will be trying some of these for my 21 month old. I chose this post as one of My Friday Favorites. With your permission could I add the photo of the felt board with the house on it? You can check out the post here: http://wp.me/p2hp9V-KH
    Have a great weekend!

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  45. These are all brilliant. Thanks so much for sharing!! Do you sell these, by any chance?

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