Harry and The Robots (Book & Craft)

Here is a little blast from the past – I was tidying through some images on my computer and spotted this little cutie – our Harry and the Robots book and simple craft to go with it!harry and the robots and robot junk modellingHarry and the Robots is part of a cute little series of “Harry and the..” books for young children (probably 2yrs – 5yrs?). Harry has lots of little friends – in this story it is Robots – they are inanimate objects that come to life when no-one is watching. In this story, Harry’s toy robot needs to be sent off to be repaired. Is is sad to see it go, so his wonderful Granny suggests that he make his own.. but that night Granny is taken ill and to hospital.

The family is confused and saddened, but Harry NEEDS to make those robots now more than ever. Eventually he does… and then they go to visit Granny in hospital, they come to life… and help Granny become better.

A sweet story of childhood innocence and one that both my children ADORED.

One day after reading the book, my son jumped up and said “I want to make a robot like in the book”. We rummaged through our recycling box to see if we could find different parts to make the robot. When you look closely at the book cover, can you see which robot we tried to have a go at?!

It was super simple and fun. We taped all the different parts together (easier than gluing). My son was SO happy with the result.

 

Make Your Own Zoo – Crafts for Kids

As many of you know, we are great fans of crafting.. we love nothing better than taking “old things” from the recycling box and turning into something new and wonderful…. We particularly like to craft with TP Rolls and have occassionally dabbled in Egg Carton Crafts (here and here). So when the publisher of this lovely little book – Make Your Own Zoo by Tracey Radford – asked if we anted to check the book out, I knew we simply had to… especially since both kids are now getting to the age, were they ADORE browsing craft books and picking out what they would like to make next.Cardboard Zoo Craft Ideas for Kids (12)

Cardboard Zoo Craft Ideas for Kids (11)

 

The Book is categories into – Safari Crafts, Jungle Crafts, Aviary Crafts, Aquarium Crafts and a nice section about making enclosures and scenery (to complete your Zoo craft efforts!Cardboard Zoo Craft Ideas for Kids (13)

My kids excitedly grabbed the book off me and then disappeared off with it for a few days. I could hear the occassional Ooh and Aah. There really are LOTS of super cute and clever little craft projects in this book. The kids had a go at making a panda on their own (a little tricky ON THEIR OWN, they are only 7 and 5), but I feel they managed v well, esp when they decided to substitute glue with tape!Cardboard Zoo Craft Ideas for Kids (7)

Love all the TP Roll crafts – thsi Giraffe is adorable…Cardboard Zoo Craft Ideas for Kids (2)But I have to say, I particularly like all the different birds – who would have thought you can make so many different cute little flying critters from an egg carton!?

All in all a sweet book for those that love to craft with recycled materials.. great for my kid’s age group – or for grown ups making for a play set for the kids.

I do think the kids need a bit of help cutting and sticking… but then again, that is what a nice craft session  is all about – sitting down together and getting crafty!

 

The Wombles of Wimbledon

We live close enough to Wimbledon Common, to go and visit it on occassion and have a good walk around it. When walking in woods with younger children however, it is good to often have some sort of purpose (having said that, they love running around, picking up sticks, climbing up trees and exploring regardless).. so.. recently we have been reading The Wombles of Wimbledon Common books. It talks about the Wimbledon Common Windmill, the Goluff (aka Golf) course and Queen’s Mere pond. It was exciting to visit the common with these locations in  mind and to see whether WE could spot a Womble…

Here is how we did – how many did you spot?!

If you are not familiar with The Wombles, do check out the stories, they are making for a great chapter book for us at bedtime at the moment (the kids are aged 5 and 7yrs). Really sweet!

Check out these affiliate links for book info US readers read about The Wombles here , UK readers here.

 

Gingerbread Man Books

Sooo with us being in FULL Christmas Baking mode…. we are making all sorts from Vanilla Kipferl to Gingerbread Men. We ALSO love to read lots of Christmas books at this time of year (we have a number of “Christmas books” list for you to check out – one set here, and another set here, with our favourite Christmas Movies here)… but today’s topic of excitement, are these GINGERBREAD MAN BOOKS. Who knew that there were SO MANY different ones. Lots of fun reading to keep you busy through December. Simply Wonderful.

I have popped them all into one handy (affiliate) “list”, as well as included some quirky Gingerbread men products for you to take a peak at, just click on the links below for full info.

gingerbread man books

Check out the full book list here for US Readers

Check out the full book list here for UK Readers

Non-Fiction Books for Kids – #RealWorldAdventures #NNFN

national non fiction monthIf you know about our family, you will know that we ADORE picture books. When my kids where born, Picture Books was something that I really splashed out on. We were lucky to receive lots of baby items clothes and toys as hand me downs, so I felt I could go crazy on the books. The kids adore books now, and as they are getting older (4yrs and 6yrs), it is really interesting to see how their interests are developing.

Today we are supporting National Non-Fiction November. This is the Federation of Children’s Book Groups’ annual celebration of all things factual. Born out of National Non-Fiction Day, 2014 marks a new departure, with the whole month now being a celebration of all those readers, authors and illustrators who have a passion for information and facts.

National Non-Fiction November is an ideal time to invite a non-fiction author for an event at your local school, library, or youth group. You can find details of many non-fiction authors at Contact an Author and Authors Aloud. FCBG groups also have access to a dedicated directory of non-fiction authors who are keen to visit groups for events. Find free resources here.

As part of this, I wanted to share some of The Boy’s favourite non-fiction books. His love for non-fiction is something that I love about him – he is so interested in the world and the things around him, he loves to pour over these books and take it all in – always asking questions and sharing facts he has learnt (personally, I love to “escape into the world of fiction”, so we are quite different in this respect). We have some lovely Atlases that he enjoys browsing, a great book on the Human Body and a number of science books.

non fiction for kidsBut the thing that he seems to really enjoy is history! Which is a common interest he shares with his father. So we were very chuffed to receive the Usborn History of Britain collection from a friend – 10 books looking at different periods of Britain’s history.  (It is quite pricey, but do shop around, The Book People had a GREAT offer on it).

Peronally, history is NOT my strongest subject, so I am enjoying reading these book WITH The Boy. A great way for us both discover things about Britain – from the Anglo-Saxons, right through to the Second World War and modern Britain.

As with all Usborne books – it is well written and it contains a mixture of good facts, but also quirky anecdotes and illustrations that will help make history interesting for kids.

51HHVyjAZBL._As it is National Non-Fiction Week and this year’s theme is the First World War, I thought I would highlight this particular book in the set.

The book lays out the background to the War – the clash of Empires and the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand. Maps show how Europe was divided at the time. A good example of making life during the war interesting is the book sharing extracts from popular songs at the time (Goodbye Dolly Gray), explaining nicknames such as “Tommies” and myths such as the Angel of Mons. Of course it also talks about the hardship of war, about the losses and the sadness and how so many lives are affected. But also about the small miracles of war, such as the Christmas Truce. Showing the human side of the parties involved.

This only touches on the information within this 60 odd pages book on the First World War. It is jam packed with so much, looking at so many different aspects of the war (including, what happened to wounded soldiers after the war), that any child working on a history project, probably has all the information they need at their finger tips.

Multiply it by 10 books and you have an excellent representation of Britain’s history all in one place.

I am really enjoying revisiting my own history knowledge through my children and their wonderful non fictional books.