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!!

Thursday, January 31, 2013

100 hearts in 15 minutes (or less!)

So have you ever needed a LOT of little shapes made out of construction paper?  It's so hard to cut multiple sheets at a time because the paper moves and you end up with a bunch of shapes that don't match and look bad.

And if you have a Cricket, it's hard to find the right sized shape, and let's be's kind of a pain to cut out a bunch of little things on the Cricket.

This is how Ms. Janette and I do it:

Start with a stack of construction paper (7-9 pieces). 

On the top sheet, trace your shape.  We use cookie cutters!!

Now, generously staple between the hearts.  Yep, that's the trick.

And now you've got a bunch of perfect sized hearts...just in time for all those Valentine's projects!!

Try it with other shapes, too!!

Ladybug, Ladybug, fly away home...

I couldn't love this craft anymore than I do!  :)  
This week we have been doing the letter L.

So, circle time is my favorite...we spend a few minutes a day in a circle and talk about different things.  L is a funny one for them to sound out, and when we ask what starts with "L," we get "elbow" and "elephant..."  Poor kiddos and the English language.

So here is your supply list:

Cut black paper into big round circles, red paper into a smaller round circle, then cut it in half, cut black paper into head sized round circles, and more black paper into dots for her wings.  And top it off with googly eyes.  We loved the bigger ones on this bug...

We printed out a handwriting sheet to glue it on to.


Yeah, we love it, too!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

"L" is for Lion

One of the easiest ways to help kids remember what a letter looks like is to make it into an animal.  When my kiddos were little, they loved the LeapFrog videos with the dancing letters that sang about what sound they make.  In fact, I single handedly give credit to them for my daughter learning her sounds!  :)  

So here is our version of an "L" is for Lion:

Simply cut out a large letter L out of brown construction paper, then cut out the "details" shapes...legs, tail, ear, and mane out of orange or yellow paper (be sure and fringe the mane so it looks like hair), and a brown nose/mouth.  When assembled, glue on the googly eye and draw the details on feet and face with black marker.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

If I were KING for just one day...

For "K" is for KING, you need yellow crowns (cut them out using this easy cutting method), purple "K's," and a bunch of sparkly sequins...

Glue the K on the paper, top it off with a crown and then embellish as much as you want...

Really simple and visual way for them to associate the K with the sound.  

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Getting Excited for "Under the Sea..."

Under the Sea is one of our favorite units...and we are gearing up for a fun one!!  Here are a few of our past projects. 

Look for some more ideas in coming weeks...

XOXO, Andrea

Monday, January 14, 2013

Easy "T" is for Turtle

So, one of the little boys we have had in our class LOVES to make "pets."  Every time we make an animal of any kind he calls it his pet and talks all about how he's going to take it home and play with it.  He had a blast with this cutie...

We used a paper bowl and painted it green ahead of time, because our main goal for this one was the fine motor skills it was going to take to glue the dried peas onto Tiny Tim's back.  But you could just as easily let the kids color or paint it themselves if you wanted to do it differently.

The rest of the activity is self explanatory...cut some green legs and a head out of construction paper, rectangle shaped with rounded corners.  Glue on googly eyes and dried peas.

One of the kids favorite songs to sing is Tiny Tim...

"I had a little turtle, his name was Tiny Tim.
I put him in the bathtub to see if he could swim.
He drank up all the water...
He ate up all the soap...
He tried to eat the bathtub...
But it wouldn't go down his throat!!"

(This next part is their FAVORITE!!!)

{hand actions:  cup your hands into a small ball or bubble and move your hands outward with each "bubble"}

"Bubble, bubble, bubble...
Bubble, bubble, bubble...
Bubble, bubble, bubble...
Bubble, bubble....POP!!"

They all break into fits of laughter...they love it!!

CLICK this link for a YouTube video of a little girl singing it...I don't know her (LOL) but it will give you an idea of the tune!!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Egg Carton Counting

Are you saving all your used toilet paper rolls, egg cartons, soda bottles??  

A great way to help kiddos visually see how many things a number actually represents is to make several Egg Carton Counters.

Simply write the numbers 1-12 on the bottom of each spot.

Give each kiddo a cup with a bunch of something in can be beads or it can be something fun and edible, like Cheerios, Skittles, Kix...HINT:  Edible stuff is preferred by the kids!!  :)

Then they put one Cheerio in the "1" spot, two Cheerios in the "2" spot...and so on.  This is a great way for the kids to SEE how much 10 is....