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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Fossil Dig Travel Matching Game

Paleontology Dig Travel Game // Party Through the USA // free printable matching game for kids

We've visited the Museum of the Rockies in Montana several times, but the kids are asking when we can go back.  They (like most kids) love the mystery and excitement of dinosaurs and other things dug from the ground.  Any activity featuring paleontology is great news in their book.

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Last year, I put together several matching games in a tin, which were great for slipping in a pocket for wait times like restaurants, doctor's offices, and airplanes.  This year, I'm starting out Travel Time Tuesday with a fossil matching game!  Just download the printable and you're good to go.

Fossil Dig Printable Matching Game for Kids // Party Through the USA //file folder game // learn through play // perfect for a dinosaur road trip or lesson on fossils

I was inspired for this printable by A Dynamic Mess, who created a "dig site" on her matching game with string.  She said that the grid helped the preschoolers put their card back in the correct place.  For my game, I used a glue stick to put the printable in a file folder and poked holes to add the string.  Then, I threaded the embroidery floss in and out of the holes to make a 3D grid.  I didn't laminate it because I wanted it to photograph better, but I recommend laminating the game board if that's an option.

I also added wood tiles for the matching cards to give them a lot strength and weight.  It makes it a lot easier for little fingers to pick them up.  They're almost irresistible to being touched.  I really like how they look too.  The wood tiles were purchased on Etsy.

Fossil Dig Printable Matching Game for Kids // Party Through the USA

If you decide not to add the wood tiles, the matching cards can be printed on cardstock and laminated.  I included a page with themed backing for the cards to help them be less transparent- just print double-sided and cut out.  The cards can be stored in an Altoid tin.  The printable also comes with a label for the tin.  I laminate the label, and then hot glue it to the tin.  If you have a better way to affix the label, drop it in the comments.

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Paleontology Dig Travel Game // Party Through the USA // Pretend your a real paleontologist with this travel matching game.  Game board and matching cards with picture of fossils.  Great for your next trip to the dinosaur museum, vacation in the badlands, or Dinosaur-themed road trip.  Free printable file folder game with cards that fit in an altoid tin.  Stop by the site for more tiny toys!Paleontology Dig Travel Game // Party Through the USA // free printable // perfect for dinosaur themed homeschool or classroom units

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Printable Travel Journal

This blog article was originally posted on my first blog In Our Pond.  I started out trying to put all my travel content on my homeschooling blog, but it grew to be too big.  So, I'm moving all the road trip stuff over here!  In Our Pond will now be exclusively for homeschooling and parenting content, while this blog (Party Through the USA) is for all the family travel posts.  Check them both out!

One of the DIY gifts I made this year was a travel journal for a sister who is hoping to take a trip to Scotland next year.  I designed these printable pages to go int the book I made for her, and I've decided to share them on here too.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Road Trip Scavenger Hunt Printables

I was chatting with another mom as she prepares for a family road trip.  She was asking about scavenger hunt printables.  I was surprised to realize that I had never done anything with road trip bingo.  I enjoyed putting together these images for her.  Scroll the bottom of the post for a brand new scavenger hunt from Party Through the USA!

Road Trip Scavenger Hunt Printables //Party Through the USA // free printables // busy bags for older kids // travel binder

As promised at the beginning of the post- two new road trip scavenger hunt games.  They are US-centric because that's what I know, but they should be mostly good for all regions of the USA.  I chose to do gas stations and hotel chains, since those are very common sightings and an integral part of road trips.  Pass one out to each kid or give both to all the kids.  Place them in a page cover or laminate them to use over and over.  A whiteboard marker can be used to mark out the signs you see or even the places you visit.  Let me know in the comments what you want to see next.

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Friday, January 4, 2019

Love Bug Pinch Activity in an Altoid Tin

Love Bug Pinch Activity in an Altoid Tin // Party Through the USA // ladybug toys // travel activities

I know it's a bit early for springtime posts, but all of our snow is melted and it's warming up already (I think we might get a springtime burial in snow).  I mainly wanted to make this printable activity for Valentine's Day.  Since the spider game is so popular, I thought a ladybug one would be a good addition.

Just like the spider game, the lady bug game is contained in a tiny Altoid tin.  The printable contains a custom cover for the tin.  I usually leave the tin unpainted but you can look for tutorials online for how to spray paint or cover them.  Laminate the cover or coat it with modge podge then hot glue it to the tin.

Love Bug Pinch Activity in an Altoid Tin // Party Through the USA // travel activities // DIY toys // ladybugs // homeschooling // math // STEM

The printable comes with themed number squares, which can be used to help a child build number sense.  Using either Good Luck Mini ladybugs or craft buttons, the child can show the value for each number.  If you want to work on numbers 1-5, then you'll need 15 ladybugs in the tin.  If you want to do 1-10 at the same time, you'll need 55 bugs.

Of course, the bugs can also be used for simple addition and subtraction games.  A dice could be added to the tin to make random numbers for equations.  The limit is really only on the kids imagination and skill set for how they use the ladybug counters for math.

Another great game for helping kids understand the factors of a number (for example 9+1=10 but 5+5=10) is an activity called "Dead or Alive Bugs."  Decide what number you want to work on and put that many bugs in a cup or hold in your hands and shake like dice.  Toss them out and count how many bugs are alive and how many are dead.  Or keep track of who has the most alive bugs to see who's the winner after 5 or 10 rounds.

To work on fine motor skills, a pair of tweezers can be included in the tin.  Although it's very challenging, the child can maneuver the tweezers under the bug and grab it.  The bugs could all be laying on their backs and needing to be rescued and put upright or moved around to make the different number quantities.

Although the felt won't fit in the tin, I also recommend that you pack a piece of felt or fabric that can be used as a playing surface.  The felt, which can be purchased at big box or craft stores, helps to define the child's work space and makes the activity pieces less slippery.

Let me know how you use the tin or which theme you'd like to see next in the comments below.

I love ladybugs!  Check out all these adorable ladybug items!

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Love Bug Pinch Activity in an Altoid Tin // Party Through the USA // airplane toys // travel toys // DIY travel activities // printables // math // kindergarten