Busy Bag Round-Up

Sunday, August 02, 2015

My sister and brother in law are currently in China, bringing home their son & my nephew, Titus! While they are gone, my fearless mother is watching Megan & Eric's other three children in Arizona. I know how crazy life can be with just two little ones so I thought mom might need a few options for some quiet, self-guided play- especially for the girls. I headed to Pinterest where I found a few good options. I printed them out, laminated them and put them in individual pencil bags. I bought the pencil bags at Dollar General for $1 each. This is the perfect time of year to buy them, since there is so much back-to-school merchandise in stores. In my past experience, these go pretty fast and there usually aren't many left (if any) to go on clearance. So best bet is to buy them up when you see them! They also have them at our Dollar Tree. 

Here's a rundown of the Busy Bags that I made. I have ideas for several more, but I only bought 10 pencil bags. I totally thought that would be plenty but once I started looking up ideas, they just didn't stop coming! I'll try to take some pictures when I get to Arizona in a few days and add them here, but for the mean time, I will link to the sites I printed from. 

Art Dice- This was SO FUN! I bought a package of wooden cubes from Hobby Lobby ($3.99) and painted three of them. One dice has different colors on each side. A second die has different patterns (like dots, squiggle lines, crosshatch, etc). The third die has different artistic prompts like nature, people, animals, letters, etc. The gist of this bag is to roll the dice then create a picture using whatever the dice tell you to use. This could also be used for a multi-player "game" to do the same kind of thing. I got the idea from here but did my own dice a little bit differently. 

Build A Dinosaur- I bought some glittered foam sheets from the Dollar Tree. From that, I cut out different shapes. I also created pattern cards in Photoshop that were the same as the pictures in the link. Kids can build their own dinosaur or use the pattern cards to get their creative juices flowing. 

Silhouette Matching- This one looked like a lot of fun for the little kids, especially. I thought my nephew Titus would really like it. Just print and laminate the pictures! I will say that I had a very difficult time printing this. I don't know if it was my computer/internet/server or if the problem was with the host site. I had to take a very round about approach to get it to print. I hope its easier for you!

Colored Craft Stick Patterning- I printed off the pattern cards and laminated them. Then I bought a package of colored craft sticks at HL ($2.99 for 150). 

Roll A Robot- Cut up the pieces for the robot, along with a couple of instruction cards. Laminate and include a die in the bag. 

Number Matching Game- Print, Cut, Laminate!

There are four more, but I don't remember what two of them are. The last two are games that I got from the dollar spot at Target. A time-telling game and a number matching domino card game. I printed out instructions for each of them then put the game pieces in bags. Super easy!

The way I would suggest using busy bags are one bag at a time, per kid. And the only rule is that they must put away one bag before they get out another. These are great for self-guided play, quiet time, on plane rides, or when your kids stop taking naps! 

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