Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Valentine's Self-Esteem Sensory Paperbag & Books

Gather your craft supplies such as ribbon, doilies, stickers, tissue paper, glue, old Valentine cards, pipe cleaners, buttons, Bling gems, magic markers and finger paint. Or mix paint with glue and your child can begin sticking sensory materials on the sack before it dries. Have your child write: I Love You however they can. This is called Invented Spelling and it is wonderful that they have come this far with squiggly lines and circles. Don't fret if the letters are backwards or upside down. There is a high statistical probability that they are not dyslexic. Give them time and nurturing to develop fine motor skills.

Valentine's Sensory Paperbag & Books to Build Self-Esteem

If they are very young, you could trace the letters and help them trace over. Or put dots for them to connect starting at the top and working down. No matter what marks they put on the paper, praise them and be excited that they are realizing the reading/writing connection. You could sound out the letters very slowly helping them develop phonemic awareness. Whatever they do, keep it a fun experience.

They will enjoy the therapeutic process of creating their unique piece of art, especially if they use finger paint. Yes, it can be messy but plan this before a bath. I know it's tempting to straighten that Valentine card so it is readable without twisting your head, or the sack might look prettier with more ribbon, but remember this is their sack. Let them enjoy the process of making it and the ownership of their product. This process could take several days for a big sack.

  • Trace around heart cookie cutters
  • Cut out hearts
  • Cut out traced hand or foot
  • Cut small pieces of tissue paper. Five year olds may be able to twist the paper on a pencil eraser and glue giving 3D effect
  • Peel backs off stickers and place on paper
  • Glue small objects on sack
  • Print I Love You and their name on sack. 


You and your child can fill up the sack with notes and drawings. 
Begin with: I love you because... or... I love to (do this) with you. You may be surprised at your child's answer. I was humbled when my daughter's kindergarten teacher told me she loved to play dollhouse with me. No travel or money was needed. It was just one-on-one time of maneuvering and imagining Barbie's life perhaps with a tea party on the side.

Help your child make a book to keep in his special or treasure sack titled I Like Me or I Like Myself. Include their scribbles, drawings and photos. Write words under the drawings and photos showing your child that letters have meaning. Use their words. Read the notes and book on days when you wonder: Who's child is this? What was I thinking?

Play Blue's Clues or go on a Scavenger Hunt looking for objects that begin with a letter sound, or shape, or color. Run around looking for objects, getting exercise, and encourage them toss or drop objects into the sack. 

Abundant research shows that children who are read to for hundreds, even thousands, of hours before entering kindergarten, do better in school. Why? They have a richer vocabulary. They have bonded with their parents through books. Time was spent with them developing a strong emotional base. They have a curiosity and love of learning because it was fun, interesting, and rewarding.

Do not try and force your child to memorize letters, sounds, and words if they show no interest. Let them see your love for books and share this enthusiasm with them. The highest achievers (regardless of IQ) have a healthy strong emotional core, were given abundant opportunities to explore, experiment, and discover - initiating their own learning while feeding their curiosity. They used good old fashion tools like building blocks, Legos, crayons, dolls, action figures, light-sabers,and library books, developing their imagination and problem-solving skills. Children don't learn with nearly as much enthusiasm using flashcards or screens. They learn with real objects that have meaning - or by hearing and expanding their vocabulary through having books shared with them - or questions answered for them.

Read the same book over and over if that is what they want. Repetition creates a sense of security. Encourage your child to re-tell the story which shows where their interests lie. Let them tell the story over and over giving them a sense of participation and control. They are trying to find stability and patterns in their expanding world. Snuggle, cuddle, read, rhyme, and repeat. You are amazing to your child.

Books to Build Self-Esteem:
Would you like a glimpse into Kindergarten? See Kindergarten: Tattle-Tales,Tools, Tactics, Triumphs and Tasty Treats for Teachers and Parents. Do you need help raising a happy healthy preschooler? See The Happy Mommy Handbook: The Ultimate How-to Guide on Keeping Your Toddlers and Preschoolers Busy, Out of Trouble and Motivated to Learn. Both have been bestsellers on Amazon and make helpful gifts for parents and children. Ebooks are only $3.99. Also available on Barnes & Noble and Kobo.

Let Children Experience Childhood.

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  1. Aw, I LOVE an I lov u bag idea! I think we'll use this to wrap our parent presents next week! I'll have to go check out the tinkerlab challenge too!

  2. What a neat activity! Visiting from the Valentine Blog Hop! :)

  3. Admirable post for child. Looks pretty perfect post for someone who are looking for bag in blog. Thanks for giving impressive idea. Keep up this!


  4. These are great books. I have used many of them with preschoolers. The idea with the bag is fun.

  5. Ohhhhh, I think I'm going to love your blog! We have much in common, thanks for the follow and you can bet I'm going to do the same!!

  6. Hey! Thanks for commenting and following me. I'm your newest follower. I'm sure I'll use all your fabulous ideas too. My daughter will technically be Kindergarten age this spring, but she's already beginning some kindergarten level learning.

  7. You showcased some of my favorite books. My girls just love I Like Myself. I am a new Pinterest followers visiting from Red Ted Art. Vicky from Mess For Less

  8. What a sweet transformation of your paper bag. Isn't that simply gorgeous!?! :-)

    Thank you for sharing on Kids Get Crafty!


  9. How wonderful!! I love how beautiful your bag came out. Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday! I hope you will share again with us this week.

  10. Thank you for linking in :)
    Love ur blog..& following you :)

  11. That bag is beautiful !! Love all the books you have shared.

  12. I still love this! Thank you so much for sharing it at Teach Me Tuesday!

  13. Great ideas thanks for sharing! Love the bag too! I am glad I found your blog and I'm now following!

  14. Thanks for sharing all of those! I just found your blog , now Im a follower!

    Ms. Rachel’s Room

  15. Great ideas & I can't wait to check out some of the book recommendations!! Thanks for linking up to TGIF =-)

  16. Self esteem building 101!!!!I'd love it if you would share this with my readers for Fun Stuff Fridays. Would you please link up? http://www.toysinthedryer.com/2012/02/14-days-of-valentines-fun-stuff-fridays_10.html

  17. Thats a great activity, lots of fun. thanks for linking to Fun sparks. x

  18. Great books and fun activity. Thanks for linking up to fun frugal friday. : ) I hope you will stop by again this week.

  19. What a pretty bag! I love that she used so many skills to make it. The books look like such fun.

    Thank you for linking to Read.Explore.Learn.