31 March 2015

Bible Memorization Motivational Chart

Surprise! Yes! It's been many months I last posted something! I want to share something with you today as I thought you might find it useful;)

Trevin is very good with memorizing Scripture, although he is not always keen to say his verses. I thought I'd give a motivational chart a go and so far it's been working great! Trevin skipped only one day so far! Yeah. I don't force the little guy and I also don't want to always have to use a chart to get him motivated. Let me call it a trial period and keeping my proverbial fingers crossed!

The chart

Bible verse memorization motivational chart

As you can see it is very simple. It took me only a couple of minutes to make; just what I could handle for now;)

What you'll need
A piece of paper, preferably letter or A4 size
Writing/colouring tools
Small stickers

How to make
Draw a large squiggle or whatever picture you feel will appeal to your child.
Draw small circles on the line you just drew for the amount of days you want the chart to be for.
Emphasize the "reward" circles, like drawing an extra circle around it. I made Trevin's one for every tenth day. This is to use as a counting tool as well;)
Put up in the area you will be using it in.

How we use it
Every morning after breakfast Trevin is given an opportunity to rehearse his memory verses. When he doesn't feel like saying it I will motivate him with the upcoming ice cream next Thursday (or whenever). I say the verses and he repeats after me. Voila! A sticker gets placed and I praise him for hiding God's Word in his heart and let him (or I will) count how many days untill he gets his ice cream.

It's not perfect, but a place to start after Trevin lost his fervor to memorize verses a while ago. I am still trying to figure out how to get him to do this without holding out the "carrot in front of his nose". So, if you have any suggestions I would like to hear about it!

Trevin is almost 3, but he really does know most of the verses he memorizes. I have heard him randomly say a verse or sing it in a made up song. It's really cute and heart warming:)

So, how do you get your kids to memorize Scripture without the struggle? Please share in the comments section.

Many blessings on your parenting endeavour!

24 February 2014

Tot School - Week 6

Tot School Week 6

Theme:  God washes the world
Bible reading: Genesis 6:1-9:13
Memory verse: Genesis 8:1
Colour: Red, Yellow, Orange, Blue
Shape: Square
Number: 1 - 2
Letter: Aa - Cc
Song: The wise man built his house upon the rock
Information: Learning to say his name and surname
Self-care/Manners: Learning to say thank you
Fine Motor activity: Transfer water with a sponge, making sure to use both hands when wringing the sponge
Gross Motor activity: Try to hit a ball with toy club/raquet
Craft: Make a paper boat and let it float in the tub
Sensory Activity: Add colouring to water and let him practise stirring it.
General Activity: Have a wash day for dirty plastic toys.

Here is our toilet paper roll scroll with week 6's memory verse written on it.

We learned a new shape in week 6. No, it's not a heart, but a square. Trevin knows heart already, though:)

Trevin enjoyed this fine motor activity! He had a toy wash up day the day before (see next pic) and he loved jumping right back into water play. It was really hot, so the water activities suited us both;) When I showed him the sponge and how he can squeeze it he took it from there. I reckon this activity doubles up as a sensory activity as well!

I gave Trevin a sponge to clean his toys. I squirted dishwashing liquid into his baby bath for some bubbles. He ended up cleaning the baby bath and his face!

In the pic at the top you will notice a plastic container with red water. I added red food colouring to the water in a container to let him stir it in. He didn't show much interest in stirring, but wanted to take the dropper and add more colour! My mommy heart wasn't keen for a red coloured everything, so I didn't let him play with it. I took the comtainer to his baby bath. He threw it out into the toy-filled tub and carried on playing with his water play.

Having been Valentine's I worked in a couple of heart themed activities. I would talk about Jesus' love for us and how hearts also mean we love others while doing the activities. This activity was my favourite! I drew a heart with red chalk and showed him how to smear it with his hands. He made a couple of marks, smeared it and left it just perfect! I love how it came out.

This heart activity turned out to be a fine motor as well as a sensory activity. I drew the hearts and lined them with red glitter glue. He tried to trace the glue with his fingers and then....

ended up smearing it with his hands. He grew tired of this very fast, so I finished it for him. I made cards with these and...

this. This activity was all me! I didn't have the guts to hand over the pipe cleaners to Trevin to bunch it all up in a nice unusable ball. So, I made this myself. I reckon this activity will work well with older kids and can be used with a boquet of flowers (or a rose) or as a pencil topper. It can be blinged up a little if you want;)


The final product.

Trevin enjoys our learning time a lot. When I tell him it's time to learn about Jesus, he usually runs to the couch where we have our learning time.

Have you done anything in the line of love with your tot this week?

Many blessings,


17 February 2014

Tot School - Week 5

Tot School - Week 5

Week 5 of tot school proved to be exciting! Trevin actually enjoyed some of the activities he never liked before. I didn't do the planned gross motor activity as I realized he is not ready for that yet.

Tot School Week 5

Theme:  Leaving the garden home
Bible reading: Genesis 3:8-4:8
Memory verse: Isaiah 7:16
Colour: Blue
Shape: Line and Circle
Number: 1 - 2
Letter: Aa - Cc
Song: Sin shall never enter here
Information: Learning to say his name and surname
Self-care/Manners: Learning to say thank you
Fine Motor activity: Tear up newspaper into small pieces.
Gross Motor activity: Let him copy different walking movements
Craft: Paint a blue blotch with an earbud and draw lines to let it look like a sun
Sensory Activity: Play with water and cornstarch
General Activity: 

Tot School - Toilet roll memory verse scroll

Here is our toilet paper scroll with week 5's memory verse.

Tot School - Blue fine motor activity

I thought this activity was pretty cool! I gave him a moon shaped stamp marker to print moons all over the page. I didn't really think he could do it, but he surprised me! He printed quite a few moons before he became interested in drawing squiggles on the page. This was his "Blue" learning activity that also had excellent fine motor development built into it.

I added number 2 to his numbers/letters book. Every time I show him these two pages he first says "moon" before naming the letter;) Yes, he recognizes number two already! I try to co-ordinate my colours and shapes with that week's or a previous week's learning when adding numbers or letters into his book.

We started with letter Cc this week. He calls it "see-an". I suppose the Afrikaans pronunciation makes this letter a little twisty on his tongue. It's cute, though:)

Here are this week's flash cards. He can already say "cowboy":) The second time he saw the cowboy flash card he said "cow". He remembered the picture had some relation to cows, one of his favourite animals at the moment.

I tried this activity in December last year, but Trevin didn't show much interest in doing it. Here you can see he actually tore some newspaper up in smaller pieces before moving on to something more interesting. He enjoyed the accomplishment of getting it done. (Oh, if you want to try this fine motor activity on your tot just remember to let him know that tearing up books and paper is not allowed unless you tell him it is okay. You don't want to find your study book or tax papers all in smitherines...)

Trevin started off this fine motor crafty painting with real care. He made a couple of lines when he got inspired to...

put his hands into it! I had to remind him not to put his hands in his mouth! I added spoonsful of mixed paint to his blotch to get that colour worked in properly:)

Here you can see the finished product.  (Be on the look out for week 5 & 6 of Random Act of Kindness post to see what I did with this artwork.)

We had an encounter with a snake during this week of tot school! Trevin rushed passed me on his plastic motor bike when I noticed a snake sailing, from where Trevin had just been, to the corner where he squirmed and eventually died. My first thought was "black mamba" (a snake known to be aggressive that will actually come after you) and I ran for my life, although the snake didn't look keen on persuing my blood. I went back to teach Trevin about snakes being eina, "ouchy", and I took a picture of it, up close. The snake turned out to be a harmless cape wolf snake. Our landlord came to pick him up, when I didn't want to take a chance on touching a snake that could be playing dead. It seems that our verandah tenant got hold of him and pecked him silly! Yeah, the peacock that messes up my verandah proved to be a welcome security guard!

I am enjoying all of this learning time with Trevin! It deepens the bond I have have with him. And it builds his confidence in me. When his love tank is full I can get some hands free time for chores and my own creativity.

How do you experience your one on one time with your kids?

Many blessings,


14 February 2014

Tot School - Week 4

Tot school week 4

Week 4 seemed a little boring when looking at the pics I manage to take, but Trevin thoroughly enjoyed himself! I wasn't prepared for a few of the activities, but managed to do most of them with Trevin.

Tot School Week 4

Theme: I can choose
Bible reading: Genesis 2:8-17; 3:1-7
Memory verse: Deuteronomy 27:10
Colour: Red, Yellow, Orange (Make prints of hands and feet)
Shape: Line (Paint lines on opened up piece of crumbled paper)
Number: 1
Letter: Aa-Bb
Song: Sin shall never enter here
Information: Learn to say his name
Self-care/Manners: Say please
Fine Motor activity: Build with wooden blocks
Gross Motor activity: Push a chair around
Craft: Draw on foam board with a ball point pen, then use foam board as a stamp.
Sensory Activity: 
General Activity: Stack small rocks to build an "altar".

Here is the memory verse on our toilet roll scroll.

Tot school flash cards letter a, b, number 1, color red, yellow, orange, shape line

I make use of flash cards. I have made some for colours and one for my line shape. If I don't have and can't get hold of any I make a plan! Oh, how I long for the day I can get a laminator so these flash cards can last a little longer! 

Trevin knows the a is for apple flash card well now, but he is also recognizing the b is for baby flash card. He struggles with colour recognition, even when we do a colour hunt around the house. He doesn't grasp shapes either. I didn't really expect him to catch on to everything just like that! He is only 20 months you know:)

Tot school building with wooden blocks, fine motor skills

Trevin enjoyed building with his wooden blocks, especially the small letter cubes, for his fine motor skills. He stacks the six big ones all on top of the other. He is finding them increasingly intriguing. This is welcoming news for me, as he is able to play with more of his toys for longer periods of time;)

Tot school gross motor skills, pushing own stroller

It's been a while since Trevin pushed any chairs around. He carries his tot chair around and even places it on top of his table! In this pic you can see Trevin's latest craze. He pushes his own stroller around the yard! Gross motor skills non the less:)

Well, I have been busy trying to catch up on my posts, so be on the look out for the next one or two!

Many blessings


10 February 2014

Tot School Week 3

Tot School - Week 3 & 4

We have been covering the first 5 days of Creation during a part of Week 2 and a little of Week 3. The rest of Week 3 we have covered the last two days of Creation. I combined the Bible reading, but tried to work through the activities separately. I couldn't do everything planned, but allowed Trevin to enjoy those which he did do:)

Tot School Week 3

Theme:  Jesus Makes Our World, The First Sabbath
Bible reading: Genesis 1:1-31; Genesis 2:7, 18-23
Memory verse: Genesis 1:1, Exodus 20:8
Colour: Yellow & Orange
Shape: Line and Circle
Number: 1
Letter: Aa - Bb
Song: Do you know who made the .... (Tune of Mary had a little lamb)
Information: Learning to say his name
Self-care/Manners: Sitting quietly and learning to say "please"
Fine Motor activity: Push macaroni through holes in a cereal box
                                    Build a puzzle
Gross Motor activity: Throw ball into laundry basket that is just higher than his head
Craft: Make Creation mobile
Sensory Activity: Cut up two pieces each of different fabric scraps to match up
                               Let child cut up soft veg, fruit or bread with a blunt butter knife
General Activity: Make toilet roll binoculars and go on a Creation hunt
                               Make a week (day 1-7, Sunday-Saturday) wheel with arrow indicating what day it is

Our toilet paper scroll with this week's memory verses.

Tot School - Color Yellow Fish  

For his colour learning I drew him a fish, but he wasn't really interested in colouring it:) I left it at the couple of scratches he made on the picture.

For fine motor skills I made holes into a cannelloni box. I pulled his coloured macaroni closer and showed him how to push them through the holes. He caught on very quickly and soon a hole bunch of them ended into the box's tummy:) I had to take this setup away when he started filling his own tummy with the dried macaroni!

I added the Bb in his letter/number book. The numbers are in front of the book and the letters in the back. He is a fast learner and recognizes Bb almost every time! He even realizes that "baba" (baby in Afrikaans) starts with a b! My intention is to teach him sound recognition, but also that words that are said can be written down. He totally astonishes me that he already recognizes some letters.

Tot School - Color Yellow and Orange scrap pages

I am also making him a scrap file of colours in the back and animals in the front. Here are our "yellow" and "orange" pages so far. He is not so sharp on colours yet, but that doesn't bother me. He will get it some day:) He loves recognizing the pictures though.

Tot School - Animals scrap page and recognition sticker book

The top picture is out of his animal scrap file. The bottom is his learning sticker book. As we go through his pictures I let him put stickers in his book. If possible I let him choose which stickers he wants to stick onto the page. He tends to stick one sticker on top of another to just ask me to take it off and paste it again;) This is a very good fine motor activity for him. And it also helps him with decision-making skills

On the line of fine motor skills, I have downloaded some learning apps for toddlers for my iPad and he enjoys them a lot! He knows where to find each one and how to use it! (I just make sure to switch off my internet connection as some apps love advertising on toddler apps!) It has helped him lots so far in learning to touch the screen more precisely as well as making good solid touches.

Tot School - Colored Toilet Roll Binoculars

I made him these toilet roll binoculars in December last year. They were covered with coloured cellophane plastic to look at things from a "rosy" perspective. These will do just fine for a creation hunt:)

What did you make for your toddler that he or she really enjoys playing with?

09 February 2014

Random Acts of Kindness - Week 5 & 6

Our random acts of kindness challenge for week 5 & 6 were:

# 5  Make cards to give to people at church that you don't know that well.
# 6  Buy the occupants of the car behind you an ice cream each when going to a drive through.

I used Trevin's blue blotch artwork from two weeks ago and also a couple of my old unusable painting practise work and cut out a lot of hearts. If you have a heart shaped punch this would go much faster. I glued the hearts on some matching card stock and wrote a love verse reference on the back of them, by hand. (I wanted to print them out using a nice font, but my time was running out and our printer is a little low on ink.) This took me much longer to assemble than I thought! Anyway, I handed them out at church last weekend.

What act of kindness did you do this week that you loved preparing?

03 February 2014

Random Acts of Kindness - Week 3 & 4

Random Acts of Kindness - Week 3 & 4

Our random acts of kindness challenge for week 3 & 4 were:

# 3  Write someone a letter and (e)mail it.
# 4  Make paper hearts, write a special message on them and hide them for family members to find.

I especially loved doing number 4! My hubby found his hearts and hid them for me to find!

Random Acts of Kindness - hide paper heart notes

What special acts has someone done for you that took you by surprise?