FREE Father's Day Craft

We have a lovely Father's Day craft for you and your children to do at home.

Simply print off our free printable tree template and using some paint and your children's hand prints make a memorable keepsake for Daddy.

You could even go the extra step and frame it if you like.

Your child will be delighted when it takes pride of place on the fridge, Daddy's desk at work or even his bedside table.


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Toddler Tuesdays - Week 11 of the 12 weeks of winter

Welcome to week 11 of ‘Toddler Tuesdays’.  You can find more of our ‘Toddler Tuesdays’ activities here, we hope you are enjoying them.  This week’s activity is Rainbow Fish.  You may already be familiar with the children’s book, The Rainbow Fish, if not you may like to extend the activity by borrowing this book from the library.

You will need -

  1. 1 paper plate.
  2. Gluestock.
  3. Scissors.
  4. Coloured spots - you may like to cut out magazine pages as spots, wrapping paper, coloured paper, or these spots we have prepared for you here.  You’ll need quite a few spots, especially if you have used a large dinner plate sized paper plate.
  5. Marker pen.

Instructions -

Have all of the items ready for your child at the kitchen table or toddler table before presenting the activity to your child.  The ability of your child will govern how much assistance you provide to them with the activity, encourage them to try each step.  First cut a wedge shape from the paperplate, the wedge will then be glued on as the tail of the fish and the opening become the fishes mouth.  The coloured dots can then be stuck all over the fish to create a rainbow fish.  Finally give the fish an eye using the marker and you are all done.

Focus -

This activity has a heavy focus on fine motor skills and co-ordination.  When your child is cutting encourage them to keep their thumb on top.  If they struggle with that concept you might like to draw a smily face on their thumb and remind them to make sure they can always see the smile when cutting.  Even removing the glue lid and twisting up the glue encourages hand strength and fine motor control.

If you try out one of our activities please let us know what your toddler (and you) thought.  Feel free to leave a comment here or post an image or comment to our Facebook page.  If you enjoy the activity we would encourage you to share this post with your friends.


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Toddler Tuesdays - Week 9 of the 12 weeks of winter

Welcome to week 9 of ‘Toddler Tuesdays’.  You can find more of our ‘Toddler Tuesdays’ activities here, we hope you are enjoying them.  This week’s activity is based on the children’s rhyme 5 little speckled frogs, however we will only be using 3.  If you are not familiar with the rhyme the words are -

3 little speckled frogs

sat on a speckled log

eating some most delicious bugs

yum, yum.

One jumped into the pool

where it was nice and cool

now there are 2 more speckled frogs

glub, glub.

Each time through the song 1 more frog jumps into the pond until there are no more speckled frogs.

You will need -

  1. 3 popsticks or straws.
  2. Sticky tape.
  3. A copy of our free printable frogs and log which can be found here.  You will need to cut out these items.
  4. Crayons.
  5. A large piece of paper, A3, scrapbook page or newspaper.
  6. Glue stick

Instructions -

Set out all of the items at the kitchen table or toddler table ready for your child.  Assist your child to stick a pop stick or straw to the back of each of the frogs so that they can jump off the log and into the pond.  Assist your child to glue the log across the mid section of their page.  Encourage your child to ‘colour’ a pond at the bottom of the page.  Use appropriate key word phrases to encourage your child along the way.  Once completed sing the rhyme through with your child and encourage them to have their frogs also jump into the pond.

Focus -

This activity promotes fine motor skills and is a great opportunity for language development.  You may use key phrases like, ‘stick it’, ‘turn over’, ‘green frog‘.  Remember that even when your child isn’t responding to your comments you are imprinting that language and correct grammar on their brain for retrieval when they developmentally get to that stage.  If your child is already using some of those key words themselves then add an additional word to your phrase like, ‘big brown log’.  This rhyme is a great opportunity to introduce counting, 1, 2, 3.  It’s also a fun and happy rhyme so you might encourage discussion about the frogs being happy that they are now in the nice cool pool.

If you try out one of our activities please let us know what your toddler (and you) thought.  Feel free to leave a comment here or post an image or comment to our Facebook page.  If you enjoy the activity we would encourage you to share this post with your friends.


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Toddler Tuesdays - Week 4 of the 12 weeks of winter

Welcome to week 4 of ‘Toddler Tuesdays’.  You can find more of our ‘Toddler Tuesdays’ activities here, we hope you are enjoying them.  This week’s activity is introducing playdough mats.

You will need -

  1. A print out of our playdough mats which can be found here, or your own selection of playdough mats.
  2. Page protectors to put your printed playdough mats into, or you may choose to laminate them.
  3. Playdough.  Our favorite home made playdough recipe can be found here.

Instructions -

Have everything prepared at the kitchen table or a toddler table before introducing the activity to your child.  Using playdough assist your child to make food for the plate, add features to the face, candles to the cake and plants or vegetables to the garden.  Use key phrases like, ‘roll it’ and ‘squash it’ as appropriate.  If you have more than one colour playdough available you may like to comment on colour, eg ‘green peas’, ‘pink candles’.  If your child plays with playdough often they may want to do their own thing, sculpting, cutting etc.  We would encourage you to sit with your child and model the use of the mats so they get the idea.

Focus -

Throughout the activity there are key phrases that you can use to encourage language development.  If your child is already speaking this activity is a great opportunity to expand on that, eg ‘My face needs a?’  ‘What fruit would you like on your plate?’  ‘Can you help me count the candles?’  ‘Let’s sing Happy Birthday.‘  Even if your child is not engaging in this discussion answer your own questions modeling and imprinting the correct language and grammar.

Using playdough helps to strengthen all of the muscles in the hands and fingers which will help to refine fine motor skills.  Rolling and positioning small pieces of dough helps to practice these skills.  Building hand strength and co-ordination is essential when moving into the preschool years as it will assist with pencil grip and make writing easier.

If you try out one of our activities please let us know what your toddler (and you) thought.  Feel free to leave a comment here or post an image or comment to our Facebook page.  If you enjoy the activity we would encourage you to share this post with your friends.


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Toddler Tuesdays - Week 1 of the 12 weeks of Winter

Throughout the winter months we plan to bring you ‘Toddler Tuesdays’.  Each week we will post an indoor, rainy day activity you can do with your toddler.  Many of us have experienced how busy ex-NICU toddlers can be and we thought you might appreciate some activity suggestions.  This weeks activity is garden art.

You will need -

  1. A print out of our free garden clip art which can be found here (you’ll need to cut out the pictures or an older child may do this for themselves), or pictures of trees, flowers, insects, birds, grass etc cut from magazines or drawn.
  2. A large sheet of paper, A3, scrapbook page or newspaper.
  3. Gluestick - if your child has an aversion to glue you may find more success with double sided tape or ‘blue glue’.
  4. Optional - crayons or coloured pencils.

Instructions -

Set out the things you will need at the kitchen table or toddler table so that everything is ready for your child.  Encourage them to stick the larger items first and work their way down to the smaller items.  They may not want to stick all of the items which is fine.  You might need to hand the cut outs, out individually rather than letting the child pic for themselves, that will come down to your comfort level and the particular child.  Encourage the child to use the gluestick to glue the pieces on for themselves if age/ability appropriate.  Once all of the sticking is completed the child might like to use the crayons or coloured pencils to add grass to the bottom of the picture, the sun, clouds or rain to the sky etc.

Focus -

This activity promotes fine motor skills and is a great opportunity for language development.  You may use key phrases like, ‘stick it’, ‘turn over’, ‘more?‘  Also name the items that they are sticking, ‘tree’, ‘leaf’, flower‘ etc.  Remember that even when your child isn’t responding to your comments you are imprinting that language and correct grammar on their brain for retrieval when they developmentally get to that stage.  If your child is already using some of those key words themselves add an additional word to your phrase like, ‘big tree’, ‘green leaf’ etc.

If you try out one of our activities please let us know what your toddler (and you) thought.  Feel free to leave a comment here or post an image or comment to our Facebook page.  If you enjoy the activity we would encourage you to share this post with your friends.


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