Printable Magnetic or Hook & Loop School Schedule Chart

I’m selling a new bundle on Teachers Pay Teachers that includes all the printable items you need to make a magnetic or hook & loop school schedule chart for your classroom or home school.

You can get it here.

This packet includes:

  • 20 printable picture clips (big and small so you can choose which to use)
  • A 7×10 To Do / Done board with placement markers (lined up for small picture clips)
  • A 7×10 To Do / Done board without placement markers (for a cleaner look)

Directions For Making a Magnetic Chart

  1. Print out the pages you want to use
  2. Trim the edges of the To Do / Done board to 7.5 x 10
  3. Affix the picture clips (big or small) onto adhesive magnet paper
  4. Cut apart your 20 magnets
  5. Use magnets to hang the To Do / Done board on any magnetic surface – a cookie sheet will work
  6. Arrange the magnets on the To Do / Done board

You can also get all of these pieces pre-made from The Trip Clip

Directions For Making a Hook & Loop Chart

  1. Print out the pages you want to use
  2. Laminate the pages
  3. Trim the edges of the To Do / Done board to 7.5 x 10
  4. Cut apart your 20 picture clips
  5. Put scratchy hook & loop pieces on the left and right sides of the To Do / Done board
  6. Put soft hook & loop pieces on the back of each picture clip
  7. Arrange the the picture clips on the To Do / Done board

You can also get all of these pieces pre-made from The Trip Clip

The 20 pictures include:

  • Math
  • Science
  • Reading
  • Social Studies
  • Writing
  • Handwriting
  • Spelling
  • PE
  • Art
  • Music
  • Bible study
  • Library
  • Recess
  • Lunch
  • Snack time
  • Bathroom break
  • Breakfast
  • Hang up coat
  • Pack up
  • Get on the bus

If you want to use different colors, add more clipart, or change the wording on any of these, you can do that by purchasing the School Schedule activity from The Trip Clip.

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Spelling BINGO Bundles (1st – 5th Grade)

BINGO is a fun way to help kids learn their weekly spelling words! You can use The Trip Clip to make your own spelling BINGO games using any spelling list you want. Parents can use the list a teacher provided to make a BINGO game to help their kids practice their words each week. Teachers can use their own spelling list to create BINGO boards for their whole class.

You can find instructions for making spelling BINGO boards here, as well as instructions for creating other fun spelling practice activities like letter tracing, word search, cryptogram puzzles, and hangman.

If you don’t want to take the time to create these boards yourself, I’ve made spelling bingo packs for each grade using the spelling curriculum found on the K12 Reader website and I sell them on Teachers Pay Teachers.

Use these links to get the spelling word bingo bundles on Teachers Pay Teachers:

Each of these pre-made bundles includes around 200 printable pages that include:

  • Bingo boards with 2-3 weeks of grade-specific spelling words a time, encompassing a full year of words (based on this curriculum)
  • Teacher calling cards for every group of words
  • 30 unique BINGO Boards for each group of words, each fitting on a half sheet of paper

Teachers can use these in small group settings, or as a whole class. Every card is different so kids can trade cards between games.

Directions:

  1. Print out any group of 2 weeks of words
  2. Laminate all of the pages
  3. Cut each page in half
  4. Cut apart the calling cards (store them in a ziploc for safe keeping)
  5. Play!

This works great as a whole class activity, or in small groups. Every board is different so kids can switch cards between games.

Added learning ideas:

  • Call out the words yourself, or let the students take turn being the caller
  • Have the kid who gets a bingo spell each word in their bingo out loud
  • When a word is called, give the kids time to mark their board, and then have someone in the class spell the word out loud so everyone can check that they marked the right one

Posted in For Teachers, Writing & Spelling | Leave a comment

Print Your Own Morning Routine Magnets

Morning routine magnets are an excellent way to help get through tough mornings getting the kids out the door in time for school. At first my family used a paper checklist that we hung on the wall, but after a while we switched to magnets on the refrigerator. My kids never bothered to check things off of the paper list, so the magnets allowed them to move things from “To Do” to “Done” as they went through their list, allowing both them and me to visually see if they were making good progress. Since the magnets were reusable, it was easy to reset it every morning.

Having a morning checklist of any type set up for my kids was a game changer for us. My kids had so much trouble remembering all the things they had to do, and I spent my mornings asking a billion questions – Did you brush your teeth? Did you brush your hair? Did you pack your math homework? Do you have your shoes for PE today? Are you buying lunch? Writing it all down allowed me to remove it from my mental load and it put the kids way more in charge of themselves. I still tracked to make sure they were getting through the list ok, but I was tracking it, not holding it all in my head. Responsibility for getting ready shifted off of me and onto my kids.

Using The Trip Clip magnets allowed us to easily set it up to handle the fact that different things were needed on different days, primarily because you can customize the magnets before printing them. What I chose to do was to put the day of the week in the text of the magnet so the kids would stop to think what day it was and if they needed their water bottle or library books or if was a soccer practice day.

I just launched a new feature that now makes it easier for parents to make their own set of morning routine magnets. First, you can always start by purchasing a pre-made set of magnets. These 20 magnets are the ones that customers have used the most often over the years:

Alternatively, I’ve now made it possible for you to load in these default 20 images as a starting point for editing them to make your own. To do that, click this link, and then you can click on the text underneath any picture to change it to meet your needs. You can also delete the magnets you don’t need, or add new pictures from the 100s of choices on the left side of the screen. A half sheet of paper will fit 35 magnets.

Once you’ve designed all the magnets you want, turning them into actual magnets is pretty straightforward.

If you need adhesive magnet paper, or access to the clipart, you can buy those things on The Trip Clip website.

You can also use these same tools to make a Hook & Loop checklist.

Posted in Life Skills, My Family & The Trip Clip, New Features | Leave a comment

44 Crossword Puzzles With First Letter Missing: Fun Letter Sound Practice

Crossword puzzles with the first letter missing are a fun way for kids to practice first letter sounds. Kids can learn about how to match the clues to the location in the puzzle, identify the picture, and then identify the first letter sound to write into the empty box.

You can buy a PDF of all 44 puzzles on Teachers Pay Teachers, or buy the Crossword Puzzle activity at The Trip Clip.

You can also give this a try for free to decide if you like it!

Games are a wonderful way to help kids learn and have fun at the same time. This activity works great in a classroom setting. You can give each child their own copy of the puzzle, and then work together to identify what the picture is and figure out the first letter sound. Each of the 44 puzzles prints on a half sheet of paper. There are many different themes to choose from so you can pick the puzzles that your kids relate to the best.

If your kids are ready for something a little harder, you can use the Picture Clue crossword puzzles for some spelling practice, or try the word clues puzzles that are perfect for kids.

Posted in For Teachers, Reading | Leave a comment

Personal Care & Hygiene

As a parent one of your jobs is to make sure your kids learn proper hygiene. For some kids a picture checklist can help teach them all the right steps. Little kids and kids with special needs will find these checklists helpful. Some teenagers could probably benefit from an occasional hygiene reminder too!

When I first launched this activity on The Trip Clip website many years ago, it was focused just on potty training. That’s still a very common usage for the Personal Care activity, since potty training is stressful and difficult and the kids going through it can’t read yet and find the picture list really helpful! Later I expanded the clipart available in this activity to cover a broader set of personal care and hygiene tasks for a few different reasons.

Teens

First, I had a number of parents emailing me asking me to add a picture of deodorant for the picture checklists. Some of them wanted to use it on the packing list to make sure their kids remembered to bring it when traveling, or to keep it in their sports bag, but others wanted to create a checklist for older kids with reminders to use deodorant, brush teeth, and comb hair – all things early teens tend to forget to do. These parents found that although their kids didn’t really need a picture checklist, taping a list to the bathroom mirror eliminated the need for anyone to have to talk about these hygiene tasks but the reminder was still there.

Covid Hand Washing

Another indicator that more detailed hygiene lists were helpful to families came with the pandemic hit. Proper handwashing technique became more important than ever, and the picture list made it easy for even very little kids to remember to follow all the necessary steps, especially if the list was on the bathroom mirror where they could follow it each time.

Special Needs

The last reason I expanded the Personal Care activity was to meet the needs of special needs families. The Trip Clip’s picture checklist format makes a great visual schedule, which is a handy way to help teach skills to special needs kids. Being able to break down a complicated task into its individual steps is super helpful for kids with ASD, ADHD, or other special needs. The visual schedule can both teach a new skill in a way that is more accessible for these kids as well as be a helpful visual reminder for them on an ongoing basis. For parents of special needs kids, teaching these self care tasks is critical to helping their kids learn independence, and the checklists can ensure that the kids learn to do the task the right way so parents can feel more confident letting their kids do these tasks independently.

Here are examples of personal care picture lists you can make with The Trip Clip. Each of these is available to try for free, printed or from a mobile device.

I also included a checklist for going to the doctor, since this is an important part of personal care and something that can cause a lot of anxiety for special needs kids. The picture checklist can help them know what to expect, which can help keep the anxiety to a minimum.

You can purchase the Personal Care Activity to edit any of these if needed. I also added the ability to upload your own pictures on the advice of my sister, because my niece has Autism. Sometimes a very specific picture is needed, and this feature lets you upload a photo of your child’s exact toothbrush, or toothpaste, or deodorant brand. You can even include a picture of your child’s doctor if that’s helpful!

Posted in Health & Wellness, Life Skills, Special Needs | Leave a comment

5 Creative Spelling Practice Ideas

If you’re looking for new ways to help kids practice their spelling lists beyond quizzing them over and over, try some of these activities that let kids experience the words in many different contexts. They can really help the spelling words sink in, and can also be a lot more fun for the kids!

You can buy some pre-made packets that include letter tracing and word search puzzles on Teachers Pay Teachers using the spelling lists created by k12reader.com, or you can make your own spelling practice activities using your own spelling words. Below are 5 activities available on The Trip Clip website that let you make fun spelling practice activities. For each of these you’ll want to have your own list of spelling words ready in a text file, with one word on each line. Note that you will need to purchase each of these activities in order to print the pages you create. If you are a certified teacher, I offer a teacher discount!

1. Letter Tracing

Most teachers like to have kids practice writing their spelling words a few times to help them learn the new words. I recommend creating letter tracing sheets to make sure the kids write the words correctly. Both of my kids tended to race through this exercise and would sometimes spell it wrong on the practice sheet, causing them to have to unlearn it before learning it! Creating traceable spelling lists is easy with The Trip Clip:

  1. Go to the letter tracing activity
  2. Make sure the ‘Write Your Own Words’ radio button is selected on the left
  3. Copy your word list for the week into text edit box
  4. Click Show Preview
  5. Click PRINT TRACING

You can change the size of the letters using the radio buttons on the left. Younger kids will need pretty big letters, but older kids can handle smaller letters.

For most words, students should have room to trace the word once, and then write it on their own once.

2. Word Search Puzzles

Word search puzzles are a great way to help kids internalize how a words is spelled by searching for the letters in the correct order in the puzzle. You can create word search puzzles as simple as 5×5 grids all the way up 20×20 grids, which should handle lists of up to 20 spelling words.

The Trip Clip already has built in spelling lists available for the word search activity. Just scroll down to select the grade level you want, and you’ll see 36 weeks of spelling word lists ready to automatically create an unlimited number of word search puzzles.

If you want to make word search puzzles using the spelling words of your choice, just follow these steps:

  1. Go to the word search activity
  2. Click the ‘Make a word search’ radio button
  3. Insert your spelling word list into the text edit box
  4. On the left, select your difficulty and size. In general, you’ll want to use these settings:
    1. 1st Grade: Easy 9×9
    2. 2nd Grade: Medium 11×11
    3. 3rd Grade: Hard 15×15
    4. 4th Grade: Hard 20×20
    5. 5th Grade: Hard 20×20
  5. Click Add
  6. Make sure that all of your words are showing up at the key at the bottom of your puzzle. If a word is missing, click Add again and a new puzzle will be generated. Click Add until a puzzle is generated that includes your entire word list, or increase the grid size of your puzzle if needed.
  7. Click PRINT WORDSEARCH

3. BINGO

BINGO is a fun game to play with kids, especially in a classroom, to help them engage with their spelling words for the week. Here is how you can create your own set of BINGO boards for spelling practice:

  1. Go to the BINGO activity
  2. Select ‘Custom’ in the radio buttons on the left (You may need to use the menu button in the top right of the preview area to select ‘Add new bingo’ if you already have a custom bingo board started.
  3. Click ‘REMOVE ALL’ start with an empty bingo board
  4. Click the title at the top of the board to rename it to anything you like
  5. In the center of the page, check the checkbox to ‘Enter text only items’
  6. Paste your word list in to the text edit box. You’ll want 24 words, with the middle word being ‘FREE’.
  7. Click Add
  8. Click PRINT BINGO

If you’re a teacher making this activity for an entire class, click ADD TO PRINT QUEUE instead of PRINT BINGO, and then use the ‘Shuffle this board’ link to get a new layout of the words. You can add as many different bingo boards as you want to your print queue to create enough for each student in your class. Laminating the bingo boards will make them last for future years as well!

4. Cryptogram Puzzles

Cryptogram puzzles are another fun way to help the spelling words sink in for the kids. You can create a custom puzzle at any difficulty you think is right. The kids can decode the secret message and spend a little more time examining how the letters all fit together for the week’s spelling words.

Here’s how to create your own cryptogram puzzle spelling practice:

  1. Go to the Secret Message activity
  2. For younger kids, try the ‘Beginner’ difficulty level on the left. For older kids, you can try one of the harder settings!
  3. Click the radio button labeled ‘Enter my own secret message’.
  4. In the ‘Question’ box, enter “Spelling Words” or whatever you want to call it!
  5. In the ‘Message to be Encrypted’ box, paste in the week’s spelling words, separating each word by a space or a comma.
  6. Click ‘Refresh Secret Message Puzzle’
  7. Click ‘PRINT SECRET MESSAGE’

5. Hangman

Hangman is also a great way to practice spelling words. You can write your own sentences using the spelling words for the week and have the kids pair up to take turns using your sentences, or you can ask them to come up with their own sentences to play with a partner.

Using this activity is easy – you just need to print it! Click here to go to the Hangman activity.

Posted in For Teachers, Writing & Spelling | 1 Comment

A Secret Message Grocery List

Keeping kids going on a trip to the grocery store can be a real challenge. In fact, this problem is what inspired me to create The Trip Clip in the first place! I found that planning ahead and working to actively engage my son at the store was the most effective way to get him to focus on shopping and not on creating his own entertainment/havoc. When he was 4, he was a fan of racing up and down the aisles, dodging around other shoppers to run in a circle around a set of shelves and return to me, and I often spent more time chasing him or trying to get him to stay near me than I did getting any shopping done.

A simple picture checklist was the first thing I used to get his attention. Since he couldn’t read yet, the picture list was perfect, and I was surprised by how effective it was in keeping him next to me and helping get the shopping done. He loved it so much, and he clearly felt really proud that he was doing an adult job. It didn’t hurt that other patrons and the checkers were always impressed when they saw him shopping with his own list and clipboard. The video below shows him at age 7, after 3 years of shopping with me using his own list. As you can, he was a pretty good shopper at this point, and he could even help his 4-year-old brother learn to do it too.

This method worked for many years, even though he eventually didn’t need the pictures. At first I put ‘easy’ items on his list that he could get all by himself, like easily recognizable items like apples, or canned soup that was on a low shelf he could reach on his own. As he got older, I added harder things to his list, including having him weigh produce, or find a new item (to him) like a certain brand of frozen peas. He especially liked it if he didn’t have to stay with me. I made separate lists for each of us, and let him wander the store on his own to retrieve his items. I put both of our lists in the same order (left to right through the store shelves) so that I was never very far away from him as I simultaneously did my own list. This meant way I could keep an eye on him, and I also had him come back to put each item in our shared cart as he went so he was checking in with me regularly. He loved the independence, and my shopping actually got done faster!

Although the picture list was generally all I needed for both of my kids (my younger son really loved using the grocery list on my phone until he was pretty old!), I did sometimes want other ways to keep the kids entertained at the store. They liked grocery bingo a fair amount, but they were probably too old by the time I introduced that to them.

They did, however, enjoy having to solve a puzzle to ‘discover’ the grocery list. I used The Trip Clip’s cryptogram activity to create a customized secret message puzzle for them to solve. Using a clipboard they would solve the puzzle on the car on the way to the store, and then use it to shop once we got there. The puzzle pictured below is the beginner version of a cryptogram that just required a simple translation of the letters using the key at the bottom. As they got older they were able to do harder cryptogram puzzles that only gave hints to a few of the letters and they had to figure out the rest of the key themselves.

This kind of puzzle is a great introduction to simple coding and computer science concepts. Cryptograms are wonderful and fun educational tools in many settings. Using them at the grocery store helped give my kids additional hints about what the words might be since they were clearly all food related, allowing them to solve harder cryptogram puzzles than they might have been able to solve otherwise. And it had the added benefit of continuing to keep them engaged and helpful at the grocery store.

The Trip Clip has a whole bunch of activities that can be fun (and educational!) for kids at the grocery store. You can try a number of them for free on The Trip Clip website, or purchase website access to make your own custom activities.

Posted in Life Skills, Math & Science, My Family & The Trip Clip, Travel & Outings | Leave a comment

10 Road Trip Tips For Families with Grade Schoolers

Unique tips for taking a road trip with grade school aged kids.

pinit2


Last summer our family took a 3 week road trip from Seattle to Chicago and back again. Here are our top 10 best tips and tricks:

1. Kid Photographers: Get them to use those iPod and iPad screens to appreciate the scenery by having them take photos from the road.  You may even be surprised by some of the pictures you have at the end of your trip to remember the journey – the picture above is courtesy of our 8-year-old and an iPad!

roadtrip-merry2. Deli & Park: Avoid the fast food by stopping at a grocery store along your route and finding lunch at the deli and produce sections.  Then head to a nearby park for a picnic lunch. The food is healthier, and everyone will get a chance to stretch their legs. Our kids especially enjoyed the day we found a playground with a merry-go-round, since none of our local parks have one.

 

3. Geocaching: We didn’t do a ton of this, but occasionally when we stopped at a park, we would check for a nearby geocache.  It was a fun diversion and it didn’t take too long since there was usually one in the park where we’d stopped to eat.  If you haven’t tried it yet, you can get started today just by downloading a free Geocaching App for your phone.

roadtrip-audiobooks4. Audio Books: This was a huge success for us. We listened to “Where the Red Fern Grows” and then to “George’s Secret Key to the Universe”. Both were excellent, and there are great blogs out there like this one and this one with other good suggestions on them. I loved the audio books because unlike having the kids watch a movie or read books on their own, the whole family listened together. Also, we could still look out the window at all the great scenery going by while we listened.

 


roadtrip-bookbin

5. Traveling Library: The kids read regular books too. To keep costs down, and variety up, we took a trip to the library to stock up for the trip. One entire bin in the car was just for books – our own traveling library! My younger son (8) checked out a whole bunch of “My Weird School” books – both ones he’d already read and new ones.  My older son (11) had a blast with the 20+ “Encyclopedia Brown” books he chose.

 

roadtrip-pipecleaner

6. Pipe Cleaners: I found this idea on Pinterest, and didn’t regret it.  I bought a few packs of pipe cleaners, and saved the addresses on my phone for some how to videos.  The kids started by making a few of the ideas on the videos, and then they started inventing their own creations.  We had a shocking number pipe cleaner light sabers in the bin by the time we got home.

 

roadtrip-atlas7. Road Atlas: We bought atlases for both of our kids to use on the trip.  My younger son (8) got frustrated with his pretty quickly – he needed someone sitting next to him to help him understand how to find the different states, highways, etc. My 11-year-old  son, though, really enjoyed tracking our journey and figuring out some things about how the atlas worked.  Every day he would draw a dot at our start point, and our ending point, and then every few hours he would ask where we were and what highways we were on so he could color in our progress.

8. License Plate Game: Since one of our goals of this road trip was to help our kids get a sense of US geography, we had another map game with us in addition to the atlas. We used the License Plate Game from The Trip Clip® and printed out a US map along with all of the license plates. Everyone in the car watched for license plates. Our younger son marked off the check boxes for each state we saw,  and our older son worked on figuring out the 2-letter codes and locating each state on the map so he could color it in.

LPBingoroadtrip-licenseplatemap

 


slugbug-big

9. Slug Bug: Our family has always loved to play Slug Bug. This fun printable activity from The Trip Clip® makes it easy to keep track – and keep score!  Honestly, though, my husband and I were the ones who seriously played this and got very competitive about it!

 

headphones

10. Headphones: This was the life saver for our trip. Our kids fight in the car.  A lot.  And we found that having one of them put on headphones and listen to their own music gave them a bit of escape from all the togetherness.

Posted in Travel & Outings | Leave a comment

Morning Routine: Daily, Weekly, Mobile, Magnetic, Hook & Loop

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from raising my own kids, and from 15 years of working on The Trip Clip, it’s that there is no single checklist that will work for every kid. Even if you find a good one for your kid at one point in time, they will grow and change and need something different later on. As a result, The Trip Clip has expanded over time to help parents craft a checklist that’s just right for their needs at any point in time.

I loved having these checklists for my kids because instead of needing to ask every day “Did you brush your teeth?”, “Did you pack your homework?”, “Do you have your lunch money?”, I could ask just one question: “How’s your list?”. Eventually my kids got old enough that they could keep track of all of this for themselves without needing the checklist. But until they got to that point, these lists saved me from having to mentally keep track of every step of their daily routine in my head.

Here are examples of all the different kinds of Morning Routine Checklists you can make:

Daily Morning Routine

A solid morning routine can make a world of difference when you're trying to get the kids out the door for school every morning. This picture list is simple, nice to look at, and works well for kids of all ages. I used one with my kids until they were around 10 or 11 and could remember all of this on their own. You can print this as is for free, or edit it to make it just right for your family.


A daily checklist is the most basic form, and may be the only type of checklist you need. For a long time I had each of my kids’ daily routines taped to the wall. They didn’t cross the items off so we didn’t need to print a new one every day, but you certainly could! They just used it as a visual reminder and would mentally check things off. If your child likes to mark each box, you can avoid printing every day by putting the checklist in a plastic sleeve or a plastic frame and use it with a dry erase marker, or you can try the mobile version (see below).

You can try this for free here. Or if you want to edit it, you can choose from 100s of different pictures, write your own text, and upload your own pictures using The Trip Clip website.

Weekly Morning Routine

Some families want to make a checklist that lasts the whole week. There are two weekly checklists available from The Trip Clip.



The vertical weekly list still has a single list of pictures down the left side (very similar to the daily list) but it lets you keep track for a whole week instead of needing a new list every day.

Just like with the daily list, you can print this weekly, or use it in a plastic sleeve or picture frame, or on a mobile device.

You can try this for free here. Or if you want to edit it, you can choose from 100s of different pictures, write your own text, and upload your own pictures using The Trip Clip website.



The other weekly options is the horizontal weekly checklist. This list lets you make each day different, so you can be a little more specific. This was useful for us to help the kids know which day they needed to be wearing sneakers for PE, bring money for lunch, or bring their school library books in for library day, etc.

You can try this for free here. Or if you want to edit it, you can choose from 100s of different pictures, write your own text, and upload your own pictures using The Trip Clip website.

Mobile

If paper is not your thing, all of the lists above can be used on mobile devices like a phone or an iPad.

The Trip Clip makes it seamless to use any list you’ve created on a mobile device. My kids started to prefer the mobile list as they got older. It also helped them to have access to the list wherever they were in the house, not just in the kitchen. The changes you make to a list are automatically saved to the cloud, so they are immediately available from the My Lists page on any mobile device. Because you can create as many lists as you want, you can make lists for each of your kids, and they can each access their own list from their mobile device. Click on any of the pictures above from a mobile device and try the interactive lists right now for free.

Magnetic or Hook & Loop Checklists

And finally, The Trip Clip lets you turn your morning routine into a magnetic checklist, or a hook & loop checklist. I was surprised by how popular this was with my kids, but my younger son especially really liked being able to physically move the magnet from one side to the other and see his progress through his morning.

You can purchase just the 20 morning routine magnets and create your own system on the fridge or on a cookie sheet. You can also print a To Do / Done Board on paper, or order a magnetic pre-printed one from The Trip Clip website.

The Print Your Own Magnets feature also lets you make custom magnets if you need any that aren’t included in the 20 pack. It comes with website access and adhesive magnet sheets so you can choose your own pictures and words, print them on regular paper, and then turn them into magnets.

You can also do all of these things with hook and loop clips just like you can with the magnetic ones.

Posted in Life Skills, My Family & The Trip Clip | Leave a comment

Week 6: Learning Through Drawing

For 2016, each week I will share a new way you can use The Trip Clip as a learning tool. I’d love to hear any feedback you have, or other ways you’ve found to teach your kids using The Trip Clip!

Week 6: Learning Through Drawing

This is something I may need more than my kids.  Whenever we sit down together to draw, I get immediate drawer’s block.  That’s a thing.  Really.

Seriously, though, there’s something about staring at that blank page that just makes me freeze.

paper

Sometimes, a little inspiration is just the thing that’s needed.  These drawing clips can also help your child branch out and draw things they probably wouldn’t think of drawing on their own.  If you have a kid who draws the same thing every time they sit down, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.

Drawing StartersDrawing StartersDrawing Starterspinit2

Why Kids Should Draw

Not everyone thinks of art and drawing as a critical part of education. In fact, at my kids’ school the art program was cut, and the only art education they receive is what is offered by volunteers from the PTA.

Art, however, truly is a critical part of a child’s education.  Here are my top 4 reasons why:

  1. First, for younger kids, the simple act of holding and drawing with a crayon, pencil, marker, pen, or paintbrush is critical to the fine motor skill and hand-eye coordination needed for writing.
  2. Second, art allows a child to express themselves. A picture is worth a thousand words – especially to a child who doesn’t have the same mastery of language that adults do. Try watching them create, without commenting, and then talk to them afterwards about what they drew, and why. Talking to your kids about their drawings can be an incredible way to get them to open up to you, and you can learn more about how they think and what they care about.
  3. This may seem obvious, but art encourages creativity.  What may not be obvious is how important creativity is in ANY future job your child may have. Think about a work project you did with other people, and about how much you valued the super creative person in the group who could truly brainstorm new ideas, and think outside the box. Drawing is a great way to practice that skill. For a little more fun with this activity, and to really encourage creativity, have them pick one prompt, and then challenge them to come up with 10 unique pictures for the same prompt.
  4. Drawing offers a great opportunity for kids to learn about how practice and perseverance can help them improve.  Try saving a drawing your child makes each month, and then put them all together in order at the end of a year.  You and your child will be impressed by the obvious growth they’ve done over the course of a year.  Your child is always growing and learning in many, many ways, but this is a very tangible and visual way to see some of that growth!

There are a few ways you can get these drawing clips.  First, you can try one for free right now.  If you want to try others, you can purchase the Drawing Clips activity on the The Trip Clip website, or you can get a PDF that includes all of the drawing clips on Teachers Pay Teachers

If you give these a try with your kids, send me your drawing clips!

Check out this wonderful photo one of my customers sent me:

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Send me your kids’ creations – I will post them here for others to see!

Posted in 52 Weeks of Learning, Travel & Outings, Writing & Spelling | 1 Comment