How To Make A Hot Air Balloon

Hot air rises.  If you trap the hot air, you can get it to lift a balloon into the air.  Here is how to make a tissue paper hot air balloon. Hot Air Balloon Supplies First, you’ll need to gather your supplies.  You need: paper clips tissue paper school glue thin wire wire cutters scrap of light cotton fabric wax & matches or lighter scissors pencil poster board ruler Cut Out the Balloon Shape Layer four pieces of tissue paper on top of one another, fold them all in half and use paper clips to secure the pieces together on the folded side.  Then cut a balloon shape similar to the one below through all layers of tissue paper.  It doesn’t matter if the shape is just so, it just needs to be a general balloon shape and as large as your paper will allow.  At the bottom you should … click to read more

Milk and Cookies New Year’s Toast

As I was growing up we always celebrated New Year’s Eve as a family.  It wasn’t a night that Mom and Dad went out to a party.  We had our own party at our house with lots of snacks, board games, and good family time all the way up until midnight, when we all quickly dropped off to sleep.  New Year’s Eve with kids can be fun, even if it doesn’t mean a wild or fancy New Year’s Eve party with your friends.  Add little touches to your own family party to make it special – a milk and cookies New Year’s toast is a great tradition to start that you and your little ones will love. How To Make Sprinkled Toasting Glasses Just make your favorite cookie recipe.  Make sure the cookies are about the right size, depending on your glass.  I like them to be sized about the … click to read more

Family Friendly New Year’s Eve Party

I wanted our annual New Year’s celebration to be terrifically fun, but also really simple since the entire holiday season can be a little stressful.  We celebrate New Year’s family-style at our place.  We invite some neighborhood families over every year and just enjoy the last few hours of the year together before we ring in a new one.  It’s really pretty casual.  The kitchen is filled with food, our loft is a kid heaven with Just Dance on the X-Box, and there’s lots of chatting/snacking downtime.  We like to intersperse the long night with some fun games and activities to keep things rolling all the way until midnight.  Here are a few family-friendly New Year’s ideas from our party. Oh, and most of my ideas come from Pinterest, so you may want to follow Layers of Learning’s New Year’s Board: Follow Layers of Learning’s board New Year’s on Pinterest. … click to read more

Printable New Year’s Interview For Kids

Time passes so fast.  Every time I blink my kids are bigger.  They are growing up so fast, and every chance I get I want to just be able to stop and capture a moment of their lives.  Just pause for a second and be able to take a snapshot of the person they are right now.  I take a million pictures, but all too often I forget to record their WORDS.  This printable New Year’s interview for kids is the perfect way to do just that. Remember your happiest memories, your funniest moments, your favorite people, your goals, and lots more memories.    For years to come, you’ll be so glad you took a few moments to capture the moment with this printable New Year’s Interview For Kids. Each year on New Year’s Day, ask your kids these 12 simple questions.  Write down what they say and keep it in … click to read more

Keep A Quote Book

When I was still a teenager I started a quote book.  At the time I was a cross country and track runner and probably 90% of the quotes I gathered had to do with running.  Today my focus is very different, but I still like to gather the wisdom of others and store it in a notebook.  I have the same binder I had when I was 17 and I still add to its pages from time to time. I write mine one after the other in no particular order and unsorted by topic.  You could be more organized if you want. Have your kids start their own quote books filled with phrases and quotations that mean something to them.  You can kick it off with a quote finding project.  Search online or in quote books for pithy sayings and inspiration. Then once you have 20 or so gathered up … click to read more

New Year Predictions

On New Years Day get your kids together and have them make New Year Predictions.  It can be fun to get them out next year on New Years Day and see how very right . . . or wrong . . . you were. You can also do this anytime during the first part of January.  It gets them writing, if even only just a little, but mostly it’s fun. We provided a New Year Predictions worksheet to fill in and you can use it or make up your own questions.  It helps kids to have some sort of starting place.  Click on the image to go to the printable.  More From Layers of Learning      

Family Holiday Book

A few years ago when my bigger kids were toddlers I started our Loutzenhiser Family Holiday book also known as the Holidayopedia.  It’s a well-used and quite beat up.  It is constantly thumbed through, sticky-noted, and spilled on.  It’s got bits of glitter, glue, and paint on it.  In short, it is loved. Inside the book there are sections for each season and holiday.  At the back there is a section for birthdays too.  Each section is full of recipes, craft projects, game ideas, and anything else we happen to come across.  When I read a blog that has an idea I print it, when magazines come in the mail with ideas I tear out the page, and when I see a cute idea somewhere I write it down–all of those get stuck in a sheet protector in the right section of the book.  (The sheet protectors are for the … click to read more