Wednesday, April 25, 2012
A few weeks ago I posted about wanting a set of Kaleidograph cards. Luckily, the manufacturer somehow learned of my post and sent us two sets for free (Flora and Crystal, which sell for only $12.99 on amazon). I waited until vacation to take them out of the envelope, as they seemed like the perfect hotel room activity. And the cards did not disappoint. The girls and I can't stop layering different cards on top of one another, then twisting and rearranging them to make thousands of pattern combinations. The cards are addictive, even for adults. I also think we'd enjoy using the cards as stencils (perhaps with watercolor crayons?) but I'm waiting on that activity for a later day. On the downside, T played a little rough with the cards (he tried to rip two of them to shreds) so we created during his nap time.
We won a set of Rory's Story Cubesat F's school auction (seems odd to say that we "won" something we paid for) and they've quickly become a favorite activity for all three kids. This makes me happy, as we FINALLY have a game that the whole family can play together ("game" being loosely defined).
The story cubes' magic rests in the fact that kids really love to roll dice (sort of a no brainer), and after they roll the storytelling comes naturally. My kids especially seem to enjoy the element of interpreting random information in a way that creates order and unity (i.e. making something from nothing).
T tells bare bones stories, usually something along the lines of "a bad guy came" and then [point to a picture on a dye] and then [loud laugh] WAHHHHH [throw dice in the air]"; whereas F's stories have plots and characters. P's tales fall somewhere in between. A fun way to kill some time.
For other storytelling activities, click here to read about our story stick craft and here to read about story cards.
What about everyone else? How do you keep your kids entertained during vacation "downtime"?