Lil' Miss Smarty Pants was created to share activities (mostly crafts!!) you can do with your own kids or in a teaching setting...almost all of the activities use simple everyday items that are found in most homes with kiddos. We have spent a lot of time looking for fun activities that also have teaching/learning value, and several years trying them out with our preK class. Here are our favorites!!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Party!!

Love a good Halloween Party!!
One of the keepsakes that we love to make for the kiddos is a hand-print t-shirt.  For this year's Halloween Party we did spiders.

I LOVED the way they turned out.
We always fold the shirts and put a piece of paper in between the two sides of the shirt so that the paint doesn't seep through to the back.  Also, be sure to use a laundry proof that won't wash off or out in the laundry.  We use acrylic.  We drew the "web" on with a sharpie, and used a red acrylic paint to dot the eyes on.

We also have each of the kids bring a treat to share with their classmates, so each kid goes home with a treat from each of their classmates.  They all bring a trick or treat bag and we divide them out!

Of course we give them some treats, too...Pumpkin and Ghost poop.  (Preschoolers think poop is hilarious!)

So fun to eat the scary food!  We had Mummy Cupcakes and Hot Dog Mummies.  Yum!

Four year olds are also getting good at playing games and Bingo is a favorite.  A couple of years ago we downloaded this Bingo Game from Jamie @ The Crafting Chicks.

They can use Skittles, M-n-M's, cereal, or marshmallows as markers for the game.  And they love to eat the treats at the end!

Happy Halloween!  Have fun with your little ones!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Marshmallow Ghosts

Easy Marshmallow Ghost!!
And it's cute...kinda looks like a PacMan ghost, right??

This one is another awesome hand eye coordination/fine motor skills builder.  

Simply make an outline of a ghost (or anything, really!) with glue on construction paper, then give the kids a cup of marshmallows. fun to see how different kids are in the way they do projects!

Friday, October 26, 2012

More Monsters than you know what to do with...

Even more fun than toilet paper rolls is paper plates.
And, kids love masks....
and pretend.

So let's pretend we're monsters!

Ahead of time, you need to paint the bottom portion of the plate green.
Cut out construction paper shapes:  green triangle spikes, yellow round eyes, white oval mouth/teeth and red zigzags for the inside of the show their teeth!
First turn the paper plates right side up (so the green is on the table).  And glue the green triangles all around the edges for his spikes.  Then turn it over and glue on the eyes and mouth/teeth, and finish it off with some googly eyes in the center of the yellow.

When the glue dries, make sure they have some time to growl at  each other with their monster faces on!!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


October wouldn't be October without monsters.  
And lots of 'em.

The most fun thing about this project is that you can give the kids lots of how many eyes do you want your monster to have?  Where do you want his eyes?  They can make the face look pretty much however they want it.  

But just as a warning, this project has lots of steps and takes a lot of fine motor coordination.

Here is what you need:

painted toilet paper rolls
Construction paper, it whatever colors you want
googly eyes
pipe cleaners

Poke holes in the sides of the rolls.  You'll need to cut the paper into a shape to use as their spiky hair, a few mouth shapes, and eye shapes.

Glue the "hair" around the top of their head.  Have them poke their pipe cleaner arms through the holes.  Glue on the mouth and eye pieces.  Glue on the googly eyes.

Make sure he (or she!) gets a cool name!!  And don't use it to scare your sister.  :)

Monday, October 22, 2012


Another fun toilet paper roll craft...that takes a lot of fine motor skills!!  All you need for this one is a white toilet paper roll, white crepe paper, and googly eyes.

Tape one end of the crepe paper onto the tp roll, and let the kiddos start wrapping!  When they FINALLY get it done (because it WILL take longer than you thought, lol!!) glue some googly eyes on and your little ghost is set!!  

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Kissing Frogs

There is absolutely nothing cuter or sweeter than the hand print of a child.  As a mother of three teenagers who all have hands bigger than mine, I would give anything if I could just go back and hold those sweet little hands, one more time.

Next best thing?
Hand prints.
We do lots of them.

For this one, we drew a lily pad and a little flower on each sheet of paper.

Then we painted each cute, pudgy hand with green paint...which is easier said than done.  
And care-ful-ly place an upside down print on the lily pad.

We added green paint on the top of the palm, and when it was all dried, we glued on some googly eyes and sharpied a big smile.

"F" is for frog.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

"T" is for tree

October also means Autumn...and the leaves start to change!

To talk about the changes that are happening in the weather and the trees, we like to do this fun craft.  (It's also a good way to introduce the letter "T.")

Here's what you'll need:

a piece of paper with a tree trunk drawn on it
construction paper cut into squares (red, yellow, orange, brown)

Then the kids glue the pieces of paper at random on the tree, and of course, on the ground.  

Pretty easy, but again, it works their fine motor skills and teaches them a thing or two about trees, leaves, autumn, and the letter "t."

As an alternative to the tree trunk, paint the child's hand print and a few inches up the arm as the tree trunk.  So sweet and cute!!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


Oh, October, how I love thee.
And thy monsters.

One of the best things about teaching sweet little preschool kiddos is that I get to see Halloween through their eyes again. 

Circle time in October is full of parties and trick-or-treating, of monsters and dress ups, and of superheroes and Disney princesses.

And who wouldn't love this??

You will need:

an empty toilet paper roll for each lucky kid (you'll want to paint the roll first, green on bottom, black on the top, for his "hair.")
black pipe cleaner
googly eyes
kid scissors

Step one:  supervise the cuties whilst they cut Frank's "hair."  Be sure they don't cut their own hair!!  :)

Step two:  poke a hole in each side of his head and let the kids poke the pipe cleaner through.  Some might need help with this step...

Step three:  let them use more of those fine motor skills that they are honing and glue on a couple of googly eyes

Lastly, draw on a couple of scars...on their chin, over their eye.

Totally one of my favorites!