Bucket of Balls

Bucket of Balls (6)

While big brother and I were playing math games with balls, I tailored some ball play to Veronika. The set-up? Just grab a bucket and fill it with a variety of balls; that’s it!

From there, I had no agenda for her (like past games that worked on gross motor skills or vocab) but was interested instead to see what she would be inspired to do with this simple set-up.

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First she dug through, pulling out the balls in turn. Then it was so much fun to upend the bucket and watch the balls go rolling.

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I helped her scamper after the balls so we could add them back in one at a time with a “plink”!

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Of course the bucket itself was a toy, too.

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As she played, I did chime in with a few words about the texture of each ball. Some were squishy, some were hard, and there was lots of color variation to discuss, too.

The bumpy one on her belly was the most fun of all!

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Have a Ball with Math

Ball with Math (1)

Travis has shown a keen interest in numbers and basic math lately. So today we had a ball (literally!), playing games that played around with numbers and worked his gross motor skills.

First up, we played backwards toss. Toss a ball back and forth, but instead of counting up each catch, count down. This is a great way to introduce the idea of subtraction, even before a child is ready for equations. Touchdown!

Ball with Math (2)

Next we returned to counting up, but used skip counting. He loved grasping how the numbers went from 5 to 10 to 15 to 20 and so forth up to 100. Plus I noticed improvement in his hand-eye coordination even over the course of a few rounds!

After school, we played a kicking game. I cut three holes in a piece of cardboard, each hole worth different points, again using skip-counting by 5s.

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Travis was in charge of the tally!

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I showed him how to make tally marks in bundles of 5, which we then totted up to find out our final scores.

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Score one for the math team!

Chick’n Salad

Chicken Salad

This easy, creamy vegan chick’n dish is super easy, and super versatile.


  • 9 ounces Gardein chick’n
  • 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise
  1. Cook the chick’n according to package directions; finely chop or shred.
  2. Stir together the chicken, blueberries, and mayo in a large bowl.

Note: You can also use freeze-dried blueberries in the recipe, as I did with a later variation. Sprinkle in about 2 tablespoons instead of 1/2 cup fresh.

Chickn Salad alt

You can serve a dollop of the salad plain, or tuck it into a pita pocket for a quick lunch.

Chicken Salad var

Or spoon it into soft, cooked celery sticks for a variation on ants on a log.

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My 1 year old and 5 year old love it best served alongside circle crackers!

Chicken Salad (2)