Word wall

Word Wall | www.sproutingbalance.com | #literacy #reading

Looking for an inexpensive way to help your child learn to read? We created a ‘Word Wall’ of colourful words!

SUPPLIES:

  • index cards, preferably colourful
  • black marker
  • scissors
  • sticky tack

HOW TO MAKE THE CARDS:

  1. Using the scissors, cut the index cards in half.
  2. Choose some key sight words – include names, favourite foods, shows & characters – anything that will encourage them to play with the cards.
  3. Write one word on each card – capitals at the top of the card and small case at the bottom.
  4. Play with them! Display them!

ACTIVITIES WITH THE CARDS:

  1. Decorate a corner of the child’s play room or bedroom. Give them a chance to be curious. Be open to them asking you questions.
  2. Match words that rhyme – cat, hat, sat, mat, etc.
  3. Find your family on the word wall – search for mummy, daddy, granny, etc.
  4. Find words with similar sounds.
  5. Make a sentence.
  6. Sort them by the number of letters in the word.
  7. Find all the words that start with a particular letter.
  8. Be creative! See what your child creates too. As my daughter started to learn more words, she would sort them into words she could identify and words she didn’t know.

By using the sticky tack, it is easy to keep moving these cards around. If you don’t want to stick things to your wall, you could also add magnets to the back and have them on a magnetic board or the fridge.

I’m always looking for ways for child-led learning to occur. I feel like the learning is less stressful and more relaxed. Especially with reading, I didn’t want learning to be a fight or something my daughter started to avoid. I’m grateful that we have a child that adores reading and I will try to encourage that passion.

Connect with Sprouting Balance by leaving a comment, following us and SPROUTING a conversation on Twitter – @sproutbalance – and/or liking us on Facebook!

SPROUTING [P]INSPIRATION:

Looking for some ideas on recipes, organization or things to do with your Lil Sprout? Come check out my Pinterest page and the things that inspire me to become more balanced.

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Little Buddha – Children’s Necklace

Little Buddha Children's Necklace | www.sproutingbalance.com | #Buddha #Yoga #Necklace #Children #Meditation

I need to go to the bead store.

hmmm, we’ll drop in after school pickup.

I just need to grab one thing.

We will be in and out in 5 minutes.

Oh. So. Wrong.

 

I took a five year old into a bead store. A bead store with shiny, bling, bling beads in a rainbow of colours.

 

Mummy, make me a necklace. PPPPLLLLLEEEAAAASSEEEE.

 

And so, this is how this necklace came into existence. My stream of consciousness forgot that dropping into the bead store after school pickup is not efficient and therefore we came home with some bling bling.

Little Buddha Children's Necklace | www.sproutingbalance.com | #Buddha #Necklace #Children #Hematite #Yoga

Hematite to be exact, hematite in a rainbow of colours, and some purple beads in a rubbery texture. Everything got knotted together with a cute little buddha in purple to finish it off. I think it is cute. The kid thinks it is cute.  So I guess it is a win.

 

Connect with Sprouting Balance by leaving a comment, following us and SPROUTING a conversation on Twitter – @sproutbalance – and/or liking us on Facebook!

What else have I been making? Check out the Owl Mala and the Choose Happy Bracelet!

 
 

SPROUTING [P]INSPIRATION:

Looking for some ideas on recipes, organization or things to do with your Lil Sprout? Come check out my Pinterest page and the things that inspire me to become more balanced.

Choose Happy Bracelet

Choose Happy Bracelet | Tiger's Eye & Sandalwood Mala | www.sproutingbalance.com | #Mala #Bracelet #27Beads #Choose #Happy

A sweet little reminder to ‘Choose Happy’.

Choose Happy Bracelet | Tiger's Eye & Sandalwood Mala | www.sproutingbalance.com | #Mala #Bracelet #27Beads #Choose #Happy

Sandalwood is used in Ayurvedic Healing to promote energy and enthusiasm, while Tiger’s Eye aids in balance and harmony. Add this to a cute little ‘Choose Happy’ charm and who wouldn’t feel a little bit happier? I certainly felt cheerful while designing and making it.

And for those that don’t use Alternative Medicine, you have to admit that clothes affect your mood. Sweats make you feel relaxed and slouchy, while a cocktail dress makes you stand a little taller and ready to party. A little reminder to ‘Choose Happy’ might help on those days that require a suit but you would rather be in your pjs.

Choose Happy Bracelet | Tiger's Eye & Sandalwood Mala | www.sproutingbalance.com | #Mala #Bracelet #27Beads #Choose #Happy

As for me, I will wear this on the grey February days during a Canadian winter to remind me to keep my mood sunny and bright.

Do you have an article of clothing that helps you to ‘Choose Happy’? Please share in the comments, on Twitter – @sproutbalance – or Facebook.

SPROUTING [P]INSPIRATION:

Looking for some ideas on recipes, organization or things to do with your Lil Sprout? Come check out my Pinterest page and the things that inspire me to become more balanced.

Owl Mala

Owl Mala | 108 bead hand knotted necklace | www.sproutingbalance.com | #mala #green #sandalwood #owl

Meet my latest creation – An Owl Mala.

Owl Mala | 108 bead hand knotted necklace | www.sproutingbalance.com | #mala #green #sandalwood #owl

It is an 108-bead hand-knotted necklace with a tube pendant.

Owl Mala | 108 bead hand knotted necklace | www.sproutingbalance.com | #mala #green #sandalwood #owl

The pendant was engraved by my grandfather. I don’t wear much gold toned jewelry so I knew it would never be worn on a gold chain. Leather or suede seemed too casual. So it sat in a box until I started to make knotted Malas. I realized that the simplicity of sandalwood allowed the stone to shine. The knotting of the string provided the formality the piece needed. I’m happy that the owl has finally found a woody home.

Remember to follow me and SPROUT a conversation on Twitter – @sproutbalance – and Facebook!

SPROUTING [P]INSPIRATION:

Looking for some ideas on recipes, organization or things to do with your Lil Sprout? Come check out my Pinterest page and the things that inspire me to become more balanced.

3D Print

3D Print | www.sproutingbalance.com | University of Toronto Makerspace at UTSC including 3D printer | #3D #print #utsc #library

As a University of Toronto Scarborough Campus alumni, I get the UTSC Commons magazine updating all on the adventures of other alumni, the staff and the campus as a whole.

In the Fall 2016 edition, the last page ‘Annotation‘ showcased the Makerspace in the library. It is a 1400 square foot space that amongst other technology, it includes a 3D scanner.

Could I please start my degree again?!?

I can’t begin to imagine how different an education these students get to receive. To be able to create a 3D model of a building, a chemistry structure or a film prop as part of an assignment. It allows students to think in a whole different plane. And yes, there is an app to make a lot of this possible.

If you had access to a 3D printer/scanner, what would you like to create? Would this type of technology have been helpful during your school pursuits? 

In the comments, please share your answers. 

Remember to follow us and SPROUT a conversation on Twitter – @sproutbalance – and Facebook!

SPROUTING [P]INSPIRATION:

Looking for some ideas on recipes, organization or things to do with your Lil Sprout? Come check out my Pinterest page and the things that inspire me to become more balanced.

Easy Swap – Banana Hemp Muffins

Easy Swap Banana Hemp Muffins | www.sproutingbalance.com | #healthy #swap #hemp

I have been looking for easy swaps to decrease our carbohydrate intake and increase our protein and good fats. Muffins are an easy grab on those busy days and require no icepack when we are on the go. I recognize that a hard boil egg or a handful of almonds would give us a higher protein kick but sometimes you just want that carb hit.

Banana Bread Muffins are often made in our house to use up the brown bananas and the nearly expired milk. Our household recipe had the sugar cut in half a decade ago; the overripe bananas are sweet so it was easy to decrease the granulated stuff. So if I wanted to decrease the carbohydrate further, I needed to look beyond sugar and tackle the flour I was using.

In order to be school safe, almond flour (or any nut flour) could not be used. I have tried coconut flour but always noticed a change in flavor. Thankfully, I have now found that Hemp Hearts can easily replace ¼ of the flour in our recipe. [Good time to mention that this is not a sponsored post and I am in no way affiliated with these products.]

What does this mean nutrition wise? Let’s compare 30g of each product:

Robin Hood Nutri Blend Flour:
100 calories
1.5 grams of fat
21 grams of carbohydrate (4 grams from fibre)
4 grams of protein

Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts:
170 calories
13 grams of fat
3 grams of carbohydrate (all fibre!)
10 grams of protein

If you are used to having a fat-free diet, you are probably freaking out now. Our body needs good fat to work properly. We get essential fatty acids from our food, which our bodies need for brain development and controlling inflammation. Fat also helps us to absorb some vitamins (e.g. A, D, E).

I also find that I stay fuller for longer if I incorporate good fat and protein into my diet. And the hemp hearts provide 2.5 times the protein of the same weight of flour, so there’s the extra boost of protein I needed! Of course, I can’t forget the carbohydrate difference, 7 times more in the flour versus the hemp hearts. Wow.

I’m not leaving you with a recipe today but I am leaving you with a challenge…

Make a healthy change to your favourite recipe. Try cutting the sugar and experimenting with non-wheat flour options. Don’t be afraid to play with your food!

In the comments, please share which recipe you hope to play with and what change you are going to make.

Remember to follow us and SPROUT a conversation on Twitter – @sproutbalance – and Facebook!

SPROUTING [P]INSPIRATION:
Looking for some ideas on recipes, organization or things to do with your Lil Sprout? Come check out my Pinterest page and the things that inspire me to become more balanced.

Nutritious Litterless Lunch

Nutritious Litterless Lunch | www.sproutingbalance.com | Planetbox - Healthy Lunch - Children

If you have children, the task of making healthy school lunches has reappeared in your daily chores. As parents, it is our job to ensure a balanced lunch of healthy carbohydrates, protein, vegetables and fruit is sent to school each day. We also want to make lunches in zero time so a system needs to be in place.

To make our life easier, we are a Planetbox family. What is a Planetbox? It is a stainless-steel food-grade container that is compartmentalized for easy filling and easy eating! [And in case you are wondering, this is not a sponsored post! This is my opinion about how this lunch system works for us.]

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