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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Works for Me Wednesday: Keeping Kids Out of the Street

Our house sits very close to the road. Fortunately, it's not a very busy road. But it's a road. Next to that road, we have two huge maple trees that dump lots bushels TRUCKLOADS of leaves down on us every year. (They also drip sap onto the vehicles we park under them... but we'll save that issue for another day!) This means that we spend some quality family time out front (close to the road) raking all of these leaves (close to the road). Did I mention that this is all done close to the road? That makes this mama VERY nervous!

Fortunately Emma is a good listener, and she played close to the house for quite a while. Then she got a little restless. Little by little she moved -- you guessed it -- closer to the road. So I improvised! I grabbed her sidewalk chalk and wrote huge alphabet letters on the sidewalk. I scrambled them all up, and then I challenged her to jump the alphabet in order.




Each letter took her a little bit of time to find, because they weren't in the traditional A-Z order. But she LOVED it! She went through the alphabet several times (which took about half an hour) and then started to spell her name, Mommy, Daddy, etc. This bought enough time for my husband and I to finish the Great Leaf Pickup of '09. (Of course, we were right there with her -- close to the road -- still making sure that she stayed put!)

In fact, she loved it so much that the next day she decided we needed some numbers too. (Note: We took both of these pictures on Day 2. While my husband is a HUGE Ohio State fan, he wouldn't make her wear the OSU gear two days in a row. A girl has to have some limits, you know.)


She jumped from 1 to 20 and then started on phone numbers that she knows. While not every kid is as crazy about numbers and letters as our little lady is, this one really did work for me! I guess all of those years of studying to be a teacher paid off! And, of course, Emma got to play in the giant leaf piles before they disappeared! (This picture is from Day 1 -- cleanup day. She was wearing her play pants and singing the Francesca Batistelli song "Free to be Me," the one that talks about having rips in her jeans. She loves that she has a rip in her play jeans!)


For more ideas that work, stop by Works for Me Wednesday hosted by We Are THAT Family. You'll find everything from cleaning tips to recipes to organization ideas!

12 comments:

Becky @ Our Sweet Peas said...

She's adorable. Love the "rips in her jeans" thing, too cute. This is what I love about WFMW. Such practical tips yet I have never wrote out the alphabet with the sidewalk chalk before. THanks for the idea.

christi said...

LOVE that idea! we have our nieces and nephew for thanksgiving so i just might give this one a try!

Kathleen@so much to say, so little time said...

How fun! What a good idea.

Kristy K said...

Great idea!

Jenny @ Just Jennifer said...

this definitely what I need. we have a giant parking lot in our back yard with like... a square of lawn. yea. i can do this. :D

Alicia said...

What a wonderful story!!! I love that song :-) What a beautiful daughter. Really enjoyed your post. You are one of my favorite bloggers. I love that you let your personality shine through in your postings. Thanks for all you do for us! ~Alicia

Judy W said...

Great idea!

It's Michigan week - wear that Ohio State gear every day. Go Bucks!

Sherry said...

What a great idea! :D Your daughter is adorable!

Becca @ Our Crazy Boys said...

Adorable! When my little guy was... well... little... we drew a pretend fire scene with flames and buildings and gave him the hose. This, of course, works much better during the warmer months. Sidewalk chalk is the best!

'Becca said...

Great idea!!! We live in the city and have a very small yard, so we play with sidewalk chalk a lot, but I have never tried this before. My son is almost 5 and probably would love it.

Like Emma, I was very interested in numbers, patterns, and remembering things like phone numbers from an early age. I grew up to become a data manager, which is a career I'd never heard of until I got the job :-) but is ideal for people who love detailed information! Click my name for an article about how I learned about variables and some things I've been teaching my son.

Nice pictures! Your daughter is so cute!

SkylarKD said...

Fantastic idea! Keeping our daughter and her friend next door on the lawn or sidewalk is always a challenge!

Kaye said...

This is truly a great and useful idea. Thanks for sharing!