504 Main by Holly Lefevre: summer activity
Showing posts with label summer activity. Show all posts
Showing posts with label summer activity. Show all posts

8.26.2013

Having Fun with A Coconut

Does it seem weird to you that we decided to spend an afternoon with a coconut?
I kind of thought so too (we have done weirder),
but I love introducing my kids to new foods, foods in their natural forms,
and we love to experiment...so this was perfect fun.

Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main

A few months ago we were having a bonfire at the beach.
The kids were out exploring the shores and came back with a coconut
and some yams (don't ask - we do not understand how that happened).
This group of kids, ranging in age from 5 to 12 were intrigued...
almost obsessed with this coconut.
We cracked it open and toasted some of it (but did not eat it).

Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main

The next day my kids were still talking about a coconut....
so, I headed to the store to grab a coconut.
I figured it was a cheap activity ($2.00 for the coconut) and
would introduce the kids to the wonders of the coconut.

Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main


I decided I was going to tackle cracking this coconut with just myself and the kids...
but I did cal in my hubby to help us.
He claimed to have experience cracking coconuts
(in his earlier Survivor days, perhaps?).
Anyway...this is what we did.

First I had the kids shake the coconut.
Next it was time to drain the coconut water out.
  • I used a corkscrew and "drilled" holes into the eyes of the coconut. You can also hammer a long nail into the eyes or use a drill. I made holes in all three "eyes," and drained the water into a bowl (to use later for smoothies, etc.) 
  • We had to "carve" out a bit more room in our holes to get the water to come out quicker.
  • I had them taste the coconut water...they were not impressed. (I agree)
Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main


Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main

Drain the water.

Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main


Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main

Then it was time to crack this coconut open - A job for adults!
  • I called hubby in for this...due to his experience (or so he says).
  • We used the non-cutting side of a knife and while I would like to say tapped around the center to crack it..it really took a few whacks.
  • You can also wrap the coconut in a towel and smack it with a hammer.
Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main

CRACK!


Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main

Once the coconut was opened, I had the kids examine it, and taste just a teeny bit. 

They goofed around a bit...it looked just like a crazy head with a big mouth.

Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main

We took the coconut inside and baked it to remove the meat from the shell.
  • Preheat oven to 325F.
  • Place the cracked coconut in an oven safe dish and bake for 20-30 minutes.
  • I could see the meat start to separate from the shell...so just watch it!
  • Remove from the oven, let cool.
  • Once cool it is super easy to scoop the meat out of the shell after this.

Once you have the meat ready, you can grate it and toast it and enjoy the delicious coconut.
Have Fun with a Coconut 504 Main

What crazy things do you do to entertain your kids?
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This post is written and created at 504 Main by Holly Lefevre

5.20.2013

EASY Summer Fun: How to Build A Cardboard Bridge

I am exhausted and taking care of some personal business...
and trying to help out with end of the school year activities for my kids.
My kids only have 6 days of school left so I am REALLY thinking about SUMMER!
(I need to get on it. A.S.A.P.!)
Here is one of the activities we did last year
and it has continued to be a popular choice for my kids year round.
(This is a repost)
Image credit: bortn66 / 123RF Stock Photo 

Eight years ago today we moved into this house.
My son and I knew no one and were bored...very bored.
I used our moving boxes to make houses, dump trucks, and rocket ships.
The rocket ship actually survived for 3 years!



I had forgotten all about this...
Until my memory was jogged when I was at the Maker Faire with Delta Faucet. We came across the Berkeley Institute of Design's Crowd-Powered Bridge Design and Research Project. I was reminded of the rockets ship and thought this would make a fun summer activity for my kids and their friends.

The exhibit at the Maker Faire

Fast forward to today...we had some friends over to celebrate my son's birthday
and I had tons of cardboard...
and thought, let's give this a shot!

We had 2 groups of kids:
older kids ranging from 9-11 years old and
younger kids ranging from 5 to 8 year old.

At first they seemed hesitant, but ready to give it a go.
I showed them the photo I took at the Maker Faire
and the older kids went with it-
taping, ripping, and building with cardboard for a couple of hours.


The younger kids needed a bit of help, but also got in on the action...
first they drew some picture to decorate it -
that was more important to the little ones.


Here is how to do it and what you need
to make your own bridge/ramp/contraption!

SUPPLIES
Cardboard: boxes, shoe boxes, poster board, craft paper - whatever you have around! I picked up a few rolls of kraft/shipping paper at the dollar store just in case.

Tape: No need to get high quality tape...I bought the $1 tape and clear packing tape from the dollar store too. I figured the cheaper tape was fine, since I do not plan on keeping these forever. (just FYI - it has a strong scent so use in a ventilated area)

Scissors (optional)

MAKE IT!

  1. Gather the kids.
  2. Suggested they collaborate first and draw a picture so each kid could visualize the end goal. I think this helps the kids combine forces more easily.
  3. Explain to them they are to work together to create a bridge or tower or whatever you want using only the cardboard and tape. At the Maker Faire the goal was to get a small toy car to roll over the bridge and for it to be high enough for a toy cardboard boat to go under the bridge. Our goal was that Jules could ride her trike under it.
  4. Give them each a roll of tape.
  5. Then turn them loose....it took a bit for them to start clicking...but then they did and worked together to build this bridge (or ramp).



Well, my visions of a grand bridge did not quite materialize.
The kids bridge looked like a ramp.

 They proceeded to launch the empty rolls of tape and Hot Wheels cars and Zoobles off of it. The Trike did fit under it...but most importantly, they had fun in the sun for hours and worked together to get a finished project.

The little kids also created a smaller version of a "bridge"
(or something!) and enjoyed it too.

Moral of the story...
everyday recyclables and things laying around the house and provide hours of fun and teach the kiddos a little something this summer!

The kids actually asked when they can do this again...
now, that is a winner idea in my book!

Do you have any simple, cheap, and easy idea for summer?


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This post is written and created at 504 Main by Holly Lefevre

6.25.2012

Kids and Cardboard: Cheap and Easy Fun!

Seven years ago today we moved into this house.
My son and I knew no one and were bored...very bored.
I used our moving boxes to make houses, dump trucks, and rocket ships.
The rocket ship actually survived for 3 years!
Image credit: bortn66 / 123RF Stock Photo 


I had forgotten all about this...
Until my memory was jogged when I was at the Maker Faire with Delta Faucet. We came across the Berkeley Institute of Design's Crowd-Powered Bridge Design and Research Project. I was reminded of the rockets ship and thought this would make a fun summer activity for my kids and their friends.

The exhibit at the Maker Faire

Fast forward to today...we had some friends over to celebrate my son's birthday
and I had tons of cardboard...
and thought, let's give this a shot!

We had 2 groups of kids:
older kids ranging from 9-11 years old and
younger kids ranging from 5 to 8 year old.

At first they seemed hesitant, but ready to give it a go.
I showed them the photo I took at the Maker Faire
and the older kids went with it-
taping, ripping, and building with cardboard for a couple of hours.


The younger kids needed a bit of help, but also got in on the action...
first they drew some picture to decorate it -
that was more important to the little ones.


Here is how to do it and what you need
to make your own bridge/ramp/contraption!

SUPPLIES
Cardboard: boxes, shoe boxes, poster board, craft paper - whatever you have around! I picked up a few rolls of kraft/shipping paper at the dollar store just in case.

Tape: No need to get high quality tape...I bought the $1 tape and clear packing tape from the dollar store too. I figured the cheaper tape was fine, since I do not plan on keeping these forever. (just FYI - it has a strong scent so use in a ventilated area)

Scissors (optional)

MAKE IT!

  1. Gather the kids.
  2. Suggested they collaborate first and draw a picture so each kid could visualize the end goal. I think this helps the kids combine forces more easily.
  3. Explain to them they are to work together to create a bridge or tower or whatever you want using only the cardboard and tape. At the Maker Faire the goal was to get a small toy car to roll over the bridge and for it to be high enough for a toy cardboard boat to go under the bridge. Our goal was that Jules could ride her trike under it.
  4. Give them each a roll of tape.
  5. Then turn them loose....it took a bit for them to start clicking...but then they did and worked together to build this bridge (or ramp).


Well, my visions of a grand bridge did not quite materialize.
The kids bridge looked like a ramp.

 They proceeded to launch the empty rolls of tape and Hot Wheels cars and Zoobles off of it. The Trike did fit under it...but most importantly, they had fun in the sun for hours and worked together to get a finished project.

The little kids also created a smaller version of a "bridge"
(or something!) and enjoyed it too.

Moral of the story...
everyday recyclables and things laying around the house and provide hours of fun and teach the kiddos a little something this summer!

The kids actually asked when they can do this again...
now, that is a winner idea in my book!

Do you have any simple, cheap, and easy idea for summer?

Signature