My first "Works for Me Wednesday"! For a couple of years now I've been gleaning from the helpful ideas offered by women all over the blogosphere via this carnival, hosted by Shannon at Rocks In My Dryer. It's high time that I ante up and share something, too.
I'll tell you what's working for me-- working right this very minute, in fact, enabling me to take a few minutes to write a quick blog post. My Book of Pasting Jigsaw Puzzles (for ages 4 -6), and Let's Cut Paper! (ages 2 and up) , both from Kumon.
I've walked by these books in the past and thought, "Good grief. Aren't parents creative enough to give their children paper and a glue stick anymore?" I've always let my little ones practice cutting and pasting with the basics, drawing zigzags and curves for them to cut, or just working free form. It's been fine, and I'm still all for it. Sometimes we get little sticky works of art, and sometimes we just get lots of paper all over the floor, with lots of glue everywhere else. At their ages, they can lose direction and interest, though, if I'm not right there with them, participating.
But these books have been great, even for more independent play! I really like how the puzzle book has purpose, direction and interest built right in. A kid can cut out the puzzle pieces (in increasingly challenging shapes), have a defined place to paste them in the book after solving the puzzle, and have a finished product that is easy to appreciate. The Let's Cut Paper! book adds color, fun and purpose for even the littlest snippers, also increasing in difficulty through the book.
If you could use a little spice in your young ones' repetoire, these books may be a nice addition. They work for me!