emilia keriene

creating in captured moments


Pretend play



The little men have been interested in dogs lately so we made a kennel for some pretend play and a few other activities too.


– Sensory play with dog ‘food’


– building a kennel (idea from here)


– matching numbers with bones in bowls

– sorting dogs (mostly by size but also by colour or stance) and matching dogs with adjectives


Magic Show

keriene magic

The little men wanted to do something special for me so they put on a magic show and organised a few other ‘magical’ activities for us to do together.

– magic maths questions (inspired by this)

– magic triangle maths (idea here)

– read-rhyme-write magic hats

keriene magic1

– magically appearing star (instructions here)

– magically moving pepper (instructions here)


– magician’s rabbit craft




We’ve been exploring space here recently.


– Mission control station for pretend play



– Pop rockets (instructions here)



– Identifying space objects wrapped in foil (inspired by this and this)

– Adding to 10 with moon rocks

– One-to-one correlation with moon rocks in craters



– Rocket lunch


keriene space2

– Balancing planets (balls on golf tees in play dough. Inspired by this)

– Sensory space play with play dough and dried beans and space objects

– Painting moons (idea from here)


Back to School


We have been playing school quite a bit lately with a preschooler and kindergartener eager to start the year (which runs calendar year here in Australia).


– Story about what the little men are looking forward to

– School cake

– Noun-adjective-verb sort

– Tissue paper apples

– Dot number match

– Apple science (oxidation)

– Letter hunt

– Vocabulary expansion word profiles

– Letter stamp painting


We hope your little ones get off to a great start this school year!


Christmas Superheroes

Our final Christmas theme for this year has been Christmas superheroes. We have been looking at some of the many names of Jesus to learn that he is so much more than a superhero. While it seems like there are some similarities (such as saving others and being kind) Jesus is far superior – he is real, God himself, more powerful, more selfless and humble, and saves us from sin, something more sinister than any of the physical threats that superheroes save people from. His many names are like “word pictures” to help us understand how great Jesus is.


– names of Jesus spider web. The web is covered in a piece of contact with the sticky side facing outward. We threw balls of paper at the web, talking about the different names of Jesus as the paper landed near them. (Inspired by this sticky web).

– names of Jesus x-ray bags. Each bag contains a clue for a name of Jesus. We guessed the name and talked about what it means. (Inspired by this guessing game).

  • Bread – Bread of Life (John 6:35)
  • Light – Light of the World (John 8:12)
  • Sheep – Good Shepherd (John 10:11-15)
  • Book – the Word (John 1:1)
  • Branch – the True Vine (John 15:1-5)
  • Crown – King of Kings (Revelation 19:16)



– superhero capes



– comic strip of the nativity

– painting a Christmas tree with spray bottles and brushes

– superhero sensory box (including some clues for names of Jesus, similar to those in the x-ray bags above)

– movie night (we watched, Vischer, P. (1996). The Toy that Saved Christmas: VeggieTales).



– superhero baubles (Inspired by these baubles and simplified for the little men)



– invisible paintings (tape resist paintings of Christmas trees)

– Bethlehem skyline (watercolour painting for the background, cut out paper for the buildings)



Nativity Pretend Play

We are continuing to excitedly prepare for Christmas with plenty of time spent talking about the birth of Jesus as we craft and play as well as some celebrations with Christmas desserts and friends.


– Peg doll nativity




– Angels from mini funnels


– Cardboard box nativity for pretend play




– Christmas dessert evening


One week to go!



Some of the jobs that we have been talking about recently are those in medicine – doctors, nurses, chemists, physiotherapists, speech pathologists and so on.


– maths with (lolly) pills

– homemade board game with reading and a few activities (such as cutting like a surgeon and labelling body parts). We chose “pill” and “achoo” to work on “l” and “ch” sounds

– painting with medical supplies

– cookies with a medical theme

– pretend play



We have been thinking about all sorts of jobs recently and talking about how God has made us all differently and that, while we may see these outward differences, God looks at our hearts (1 Samuel 16:7).


I made the little man a folder with worksheets for different jobs (including diver, chef, waiter, explorer,  doctor, vet, clown, scientist, librarian, cleaner, banker, boat captain, minister, musician, artist, builder) and we visited lots of places around the city and talked about all the jobs we saw people doing. He put his maps and tickets into his folder and added pictures of the places he visited into the picture of the city. We also had a paper person with outfits so he could dress it up (as a teacher, astronaut, coach, fireman, policeman and so on) and a job match, matching job titles to their descriptions.

It led to a lot of dressing up, pretend play and plenty of fun activities which I will post more about during the week. {For more activities related to different jobs see bus driver, firefighters, doctors, bakers, postmen and farmers}.



Box Dump Truck


Thanks for all your requests for more information on making a dump truck from a cardboard box. I used one nappy/diaper box for the cab and frame and a second, smaller box for the dumping bed.

To enable the dumping bed to move you need to create a hinge along the back of the frame where the bed attaches to it. Here are three possibilities.


Firstly, a folded piece of cardboard. Place the folded edge along the back and attach the cardboard to the top of frame and the bottom of the dumping bed. A thicker piece of cardboard will give more support to the dumping bed, however it may also mean that the dumping bed is never completely flat when sitting on top of the frame. The overall look and size of the dump truck you are making may help you decide if this is the hinge you want to use.

Secondly, pipe cleaners. Make holes in the back of the frame and dumping bed and thread the pipe cleaners through. I have twisted the pipe cleaner ends together inside the dumping tray. For more support, use more pipe cleaners along the back edge. If you choose to use this type of hinge you may find it easier to make the holes and thread the pipe cleaners through while making the frame rather than waiting until it is finished.

Thirdly, a cylinder such as a piece of dowel, skewer or straw, depending on the size of dump truck you are making. You will need the sides near the back of the frame to be higher than the level at which the dumping bed sits. I added some extra cardboard but it may be easier to cut the frame with this shape when you are making it. Make holes in this higher part of the frame and also the sides near the back of the dumping tray and thread a piece of dowel through. You may wish to attach something larger than the holes you have made onto the ends of the dowel so that it does not slide out (or get pushed out by busy little fingers).

Please let me know if you have more questions or if anything could be clearer.



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