Thanks to a great idea from my sister-in-law (thanks Jennie), I put together these boxes for our 3 year old. I was able to find almost all of the stuff for them around my house. I did have to get a few more of the totes from the dollar store, so I found a few more things there to put in them. We call them Busy Boxes. They are for times when she needs something to keep her attention like during the baby's naptime, during a quiet time, when I am making dinner and when school starts, they will be used for school stuff while her sisters are working on their school work. We made a box labeled for each week day, Monday thru Friday. Here is a run down of what is in the boxes right now:
Box 1: beans, measuring cups and spoons, color & shape flash cards, two books, bear puzzle
Box 2: princess stickers, notepad, crayons, princess dolls, two princess books, memory game
Box 3: color match game, two books, wooden dress up doll
Box 4: foam beads, ponies, magnet set, two books
Box 5: chalk board with chalk, wooden dress up doll, disney dominoes, two books
We started them today and she LOVED it. During the baby's nap, she was complaining that she was bored so I told her to get her busy box for the day. She played with everything inside for at least 2 hours. When school starts, I will fill them with items that correspond with what she will be learning.
Here are a few things that aren't in them, but that I can substitute later:
polly pockets, clothes pins & bowls, puppet making supplies, coloring books, dishes & playfood, pasta and string, etc.
I also put together a "Busy Bag" for the baby I got a bunch of sandwich bags and filled them with cars, animals, felt puppets, and books. When he needs a distraction or we need something for the church bag, we can just grab something. As he gets older, we will get him his own Busy Boxes.
Thanks again, Jennie, for the great idea! I think we will really love it!