Tot School: More Fun with Red

*Actual Age- 20 months; Corrected Age- 18 months

Hello friends!  Before I begin sharing our fun orange/pumpkin themed activities, I thought I would wrap up our red unit with a few more activities that we did last week while we were recovering from our colds.  If you missed them, I shared our Red Discovery Activity here and the surprisingly popular yet delightfully simple Color Sorting Monsters here.  The next two activities I am going to share could be done with any color you happen to be targeting.  Both involve water and both target fine motor skills.

1.  Fun with Squeeze Bottles

I got the idea for this activity at Teach Preschool, and thought it would be a hit with my kiddos who LOOOOVE to squeeze any type of liquid or goo out of a container (think lotion, diaper cream, ketchup…).  I like activities that give them a chance to do something or play with something that is normally forbidden.  It seems to make it extra interesting for them!

To set up the activity, I simply filled a plastic tub with an inch or so of water and then gave the twins some plastic squeeze bottles (97¢ from a discount store) filled with water and a few drops of red food coloring.  Then they were free to squeeze the colored water into the tub and watch it turn pinkish/red.

Or squirt it onto the sidewalk. Whatever.

They loved this!  There are lots of possibilities for this activity…slightly older kids could use this for color mixing, and you could float objects or “targets” in the water for the children to try to squirt.  As a side note, Little Man was wearing his favorite hat from our dress up box that afternoon. Totally refused to remove it until bedtime!

Except for once, when Toots stole it to pose for a picture 😉

2.  Kool-Aid Painting

Ugh. You know those ideas you think would be great fun, and then later wish that the common sense fairy had slapped you upside the head with her wand?

Yeah.  That was this idea.

Not sure where I saw this first, but I was drawn to it because both of my kids love squirt bottles.  Will, in particular, loves to take a squirt bottle filled with water, sit down with it in his lap, and squirt himself with it. In the face.

Over. And over. And over.

Squirt, squeal, giggle, repeat.

Anyway, I thought this might encourage him to use his squirting ability for a purpose.  We did this on a rainy afternoon, so I decided to be brave and do it inside on our tile floor.  To protect the grout, I taped down a cheap vinyl tablecloth that I use for messy occasions.  Then I rolled out some butcher paper.

With a little help, of course.

I taped that down, too. At that point, I really should have left well enough alone.  Instead, I whipped these out.

I poured them into some empty spice bottles (is anyone surprised?) and let the little ones spread it around on the paper (mostly).

This is when I noticed (but chose to ignore) that the Kool-Aid was already staining our hands. And it wasn’t even wet yet!

But that changed as soon as I handed out the squirt bottles.

The kiddos liked this activity enough, but they did not necessarily enjoy the gritty, sticky sensation of the Kool-Aid on their hands and quickly lost their enthusiasm. And it stained their skin pretty heavily.  And although we managed not to traipse it into the living room, we did track it all over the kitchen and it was hard to get up from the floor. Oh well, you win some, you lose some.

However, someone did manage to have a little fun.

Squirt. Squeal. Giggle. Repeat.

You should know by now that I don’t exaggerate.  I don’t have to!


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  1. I love that you shared the squeeze bottles with your students. My students LOVE using our squeeze bottles too and love mixing the colors all up! Thank you for sharing the link – and lots of laughs on the Koolaid! You are one brave soul!

  2. How fun! I would never think to do something like this. Deffinatley messy, but deffinately worth it for the fun. Thanks for linking up to tip-toe thru tuesday.

  3. Great activities with squirt bottles! Thanks for sharing at Mom’s Library!