IPC Day School

IPC Day School

Thursday, April 30, 2020

UAB Art Play Videos

Enjoy these awesome UAB and Alys Stephens Center links which range from arts and crafts to yoga for kids to art talks to different books being read by a variety of readers, including story time with UAB's Provost, Dr. Pam Benoit.

Alys Stephens Center

A huge thank you for sharing these wonderful videos.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Racing Down the Tube

We all have leftover wrapping paper tubes and paper towel and toilet paper rolls that we can definitely recycle, but before you do, let's reuse them! A few different size tubes can bring some major fun and provide for lots of creativity, physics, and math for the older ones while bringing glee to all ages.

1. Gather your tubes, some blue painter tape that is safe for your walls, a few objects that will pass through the tubes, and a collection bowl or box. (You can also glue them to a large sheet of paper and then to your wall if you have such a piece of paper.)

2. Have your children look at the supplies you have gathered to help them visualize the activity from the beginning. Ask your children to hypothesize or make a good educated guess about what the objects will do if you put the tubes on the wall and drop the objects down them. Any answer is a good answer....you just want them to think!
3. Let your children decide how to place the tubes. Remember, your child needs to be tall enough to reach the top of the tube or tubes to release the objects. Using the tape, place the rolls vertically on the wall side by side, or stacked one on top of another. place your container on the floor underneath the last tube.
4. Enjoy watching your child put cars, balls, beans or grapes down the tube. Children will enjoy this activity for quite awhile.

5. To secretly add some math and physics to the fun:

  • Help your child count the time (or let them use the timer on your phone) it takes different objects coming down the same tube.
  • Help your child count the time it takes coming down different length tubes.
  • Ask your child why there are differences. 
  • Help your child change up the arrangement to add diagonal tubes. Older children may make an elaborate looking maze, but younger ones will be happy with one or two slanted rolls. Time the object's descent and then tweak some angles to make it take more or less time. Why does the time change?                  

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Bugs, Bugs, Bugs

We all see bugs all the time. Some are beautiful and some are not. Sometimes we see them And some feel like pests when the mosquitoes bite when we are out playing or we step in an ant bed. But bugs are important to our environment so maybe we should learn more about them.

Can you find the bee on the yellow flower? When you see bees on your flowers, look carefully and you may can even see the pollen sacs on the sides of their bodies. Bees are important because they help fruits and flowers grow and because they give us honey.

I have been collecting bugs for the Day School to have when we study bugs in the spring and even hatch butterflies. Since we are not together this spring at school, here are a few.


Help your child make their own bug collection. This can be ongoing; I collected for 6 months! You can use any plastic jars or glass with a lot of supervision. I ordered some great plastic bug collecting jars with magnifying lids. All you have to do is keep your eyes and ears open. If you are unsure whether or not a bug has a stinger or is poisonous, do not pick it up with your bare hands. Once the bug is in the container, investigate what kind it is and make a table or write directly on the jar with a sharpie. You can compare sizes, colors, their homes, and how they help the environment. Let your child guide you on the amount of information they want to know about each bug.

This is another fun idea if you catch a live bug and want to keep it that way. National Geographic Kids has easy instructions on How to make a bug hotel reusing a plastic water bottle.

Have a buggy day!

Monday, April 27, 2020

Keep an Eye on the Animals

Animals are intriguing and teach us so much about nature and the world we live in. In this amazing world of technology, we can take a visual trip to a zoo or go on a safari without leaving home. Below there are several links to live animal cams and videos from all over the world that will intrigue children for hours. please remind your children when they watch the live cams, some of the animals may be out of view because they move around their habitats. That is what makes the cams such a great teaching tool; it is real life. So enjoy hours of keeping your eyes on the animals!

Live Animal Cams for Kids has links to 15 live animal cams from apes to pandas to elephants and everything inbetween.

Explore livecams offers live and recorded animal and nature experiences from around the world.

Aquarium of Pacific has some amazing Pacific sea life and Pacific coast animal cams. Catch the penguin cam!

National Geographic Kids Animals offers videos and games so children can learn about fascinating animals.

Switcheroozoo is a fun site that allows children to watch, listen and play games to learn all about amazing animals.

And thank you to the Birmingham Zoo for these links sent to teachers, but good for families:

The Birmingham Zoo
CLICK HERE to find free webinars on Nature Play and Integrated STEM as well as upcoming webinars geared for all grades.

CLICK HERE for virtual classroom resources including standards aligned Virtual Zoo videos and activities and Digital Discovery Webinar for you and your students.

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Where in the World Did We Get Pretzels?

Please enjoy Miss Betsy, our Social Studies teacher, sharing the history of one of our favorite snacks, pretzels.

And, be sure to join us for a wonderful children's Sunday school lesson from  Kay Roller in the atrium, an adult Sunday school class and our 11:00 worship service.

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Get Your Hands in the Dirt

Gardening can be such a fun family project, so why not get your hands dirty this weekend? Children develop a curiosity about nature and the natural world when they participate in hands-on activities in this realm.

Planting seeds or small plants is only the beginning of many follow up gardening activities. First, decide what you want to plant - flowers, vegetables, or herbs? You could plant in your yard - a sunny part - or in pots. The process, experience and lessons are the same. Remember carrots and radishes grow quickly from seed even in a large pot. And cherry tomatoes produce a lot of cute child-sized tomatoes that would enjoy harvesting. As you plant, talk about the depth of the hole, enriching the soil if necessary, what fertilizer will do, and what you expect to happen and when. If you are lucky you will see an earthworm and can talk about how beneficial they are to a garden. oh, and the importance of the bees!


Measurements can be taken and recorded and observations can be made as to when shoots come out of the ground, how many inches and how fast different types plants grow, or when a tomato plant gets their tiny yellow flowers. They will be so excited when they spot their first tomato or squash or green bean. Anything a child sees and comments on is definitely noteworthy. Their eyes are much fresher than ours, especially if you, like me, are a seasoned gardener. We can play the growing season movie in our brain, but if they have not previously been a part of planting and growing, everyday brings forth new little miracles for them to discover. Charting, graphing, journaling with or without pictures, or making up a song provide an opportunity for children to hone skills and make sense of data.

                   Baby blueberries                1st tomatoes following yellow flowers

Gardening can also lead to great discussions about where our food comes from. We have some great farmers' markets around town, so maybe you have been before as a family. If not, when our social distancing allows, be sure to visit one. Talk to the farmers and let your children know these people grew what you are buying to eat. An added bonus is that children are more likely to eat what they grew or what they bought from a farmer they met!

Here are some ideas to introduce new foods into your child's diet:
Carrots, cherry tomatoes and bell pepper strips dipped in ranch dressing
Fruit salad with some new fruit added to ones they already eat
Corn on (or off) the cob
Zucchini muffins

Happy digging and growing!

Friday, April 24, 2020

We Love That Puppet Guy

Our friend, Lee Bryant or That Puppet Guy, comes to visit the Day School every year. We love his clever puppets and funny shows. And we especially appreciate all he does to educate the children about he makes his puppets and sets. He is a jewel and quite a puppet master. While there are no school or library events happening right now, he is graciously sharing videos of his shows on Facebook.

After watching the master, try some puppet making at your house. You can use those lonely socks with no matches, a single glove or mitten, or brown lunch size paper bags. Decorate with paint, crayons, ribbons, glue on eyes, cut out construction paper teeth. The list is endless, but children love puppets. Use them to sing songs, count, or even create or recreate a story.

Thank you to That Puppet Guy for inspiration.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

IPC Day School Graduation Slideshow 2020

Though we are incredibly sad not to have finished the year with your children, we remember fondly all the months we were together. There was joy and laughter and learning every day. We had some special visitors and activities. And, wow, do we love a parade! We think this slide show, which would have been shown at graduation, captures the spirit and love of the Day School and our children in their daily activities and special occasions. A huge thank you to Susan Edmonds for gathering and organizing all the pictures and to Brian Hagan for assimilating them together and putting them to music for a beautiful slideshow. We hope the pictures will bring back lots of good memories and provide your children an opportunity to “see” their friends. 

IPC Day School Graduation Slideshow 2020

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Happy Earth Day!

Earth Day is a wonderful reminder to thank God for our beautiful earth and all of His many creations on it. He was well pleased when He was finished. And He is well pleased when we take care of it.

After you have thanked God for this beautiful gift, let's have some Earth Day fun! Earth Day was first  celebrated in 1970 as a day devoted to education about environmental issues. Take this opportunity as the perfect time to talk about reduce, reuse, recycle and the importance of understanding and caring for our environment.

Have a family discussion about the importance of clean water and what we can do to take care of it and reduce the amount of water we use.

To further explain the water cycle I have drawn a little diagram that may help. You may need to explain the meanings of precipitation, collection, evaporation and condensation, but your kids are bright and will understand a lot of this and it helps them understand why we need to keep our rivers and lakes and oceans clean!

They can draw their own picture if they want.

Here's a cool experiment to do with your children that will demonstrate part of the water cycle that involves plants and trees, transpiration. When water falls or snow melts into the ground, some of that is collected by a tree's roots so the tree can use it. From there, the water travels to the leaves where the extra comes out small holes in the bottoms of the leaves. For this experiment, all you need is a baggie, a rubber band, and a tree or bush. Using the rubber band, secure the baggie onto the end of a branch with leaves. Leave it for at least 24 hours and then check for water droplets in the baggie.                    And there you will have transpiration you can actually see!

 Clean baggie secured to a branch.       Water droplets inside - transpiration

One last activity you can do that has to do with our water and land is to go on a hunt in your yard and neighborhood and look for signs of erosion.....water wearing away the earth. Talk about how plants and grass and rocks can prevent that from happening and allow the water to seep into the ground.

One more good Earth Day lesson is the importance of the world's rainforests. National Geographic Kids has a wonderful list of Rainforest Facts.

More Earth Day activities:

A fascinating and creative way to recycle your old broken crayons is to melt them into new shapes or even in muffin tins. Melting Crayons makes the old new again and in a beautiful way.

Make art with what otherwise may be trash... reuse cardboard rolls, egg cartons, used wrapping paper, ribbons and yarn, plastic silverware, used containers, magazines and newspapers and the list goes on and on. Really, all you need is some glue or paste, paint or crayons, scissors to put items together to make sculptures, flat pictures, a hat, whatever your imagination can dream up!

Here are some more activities for an up cycled craft and Earth Day coloring sheet and Facebook links for their live craft sessions and doodle alongs at Crayola Activities.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Auburn Engineers Share Science Recipe Cards

        Regardless of the team you cheer for or what your alma mater is, I wanted to share 3 great science "recipe" cards from my husband's friends at Auburn's Samuel Ginn College of Engineering. These are wonderful at home activities, both entertaining and educational.
If you had issues with the links above, here they are:
How to Make a Volcano

How to Make a Rainbow in a Glass

How to Make Homemade PlayDough

Monday, April 20, 2020

Making and Tinkering For Kids Ideas and Free Webinar

Get out the lego's or wooden blocks and build, build, build!
Find scraps of anything and make a sculpture, a birdhouse, a 3-D picture, a chair for a stuffed animal, a mini zoo...
Use material scraps and make little aprons.
Using blankets, sheets, pillows, sofa, chairs, dining room table and build a fort or tent. This is a favorite at my house!
Find something broken that would be safe to take apart. This can be fascinating to a child. 

Happy making and tinkering!

Making and tinkering now and in the future is more important than ever before. Join Cate Heroman, author of Making and Tinkering with STEM, and Lianna Kali, Project Director for The Tinkering Studio in San Francisco’s Exploratorium, as they share strategies for delightful investigations to try at home and at school. During this webinar, they will take a closer look at tinkering with two big ideas---light and shadow play and balls, ramps, and chain reactions.

If you are unable to attend live, a recorded version of the presentation will be available within 6-8 weeks.

About the Presenters


Cate Heroman


Cate Heroman is the author of NAEYC’s , an early childhood consultant and Education Chair of Knock Knock Children’s Museum in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. A nationally recognized educator and author of numerous publications, she has been an early childhood classroom teacher, state administrator, trainer, facilitator and developer of curriculum and assessment materials. Cate is passionate about helping all children become creative thinkers and problem solvers.


Lianna Kali


Lianna Kali is a Project Director in the Tinkering Studio at the Exploratorium and has been in the education field for over 15 years. She holds a Master’s Degree in International and Multicultural Education from the University of San Francisco, and cares deeply about the intersections of STEAM learning and educational equity. When she's not facilitating tinkering experiences for young learners, she enjoys reading Afrofuturist science fiction (especially books by Octavia Butler). 

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Invitation this Sunday and Miss Betsy's Cross Lesson

Please join IPC today for a children's Sunday School lesson from the atrium, an adult Sunday school lesson, and our 11:00 worship service. Our daily devotions are also available daily here.

And you and your children definitely need to view Miss Betsy, our Social Studies teacher, sharing her story of the cross. It is fascinating to see what she can do with a piece of paper!

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Through Your Eyes - Shapes & Colors Outdoors

Our yards and neighborhoods are a feast for our eyes. We can see every color and shape if we just look carefully. Go outside and either take pictures of the colors and shapes as you find them or just tic them off the list. You may find some colors and shapes I didn't even list. Once back inside, you can look back at your pictures - a great way to review colors and shapes. Or let your child make a picture remembering some of what they saw. This is easy and fun to do over and over, finding different objects each time or searching only for one shape or color and see how many you find.


straight line
curvy line

Friday, April 17, 2020

Got Cabin Fever? McWane Can Help!

We have been apart for over a month now, and many of us are feeling that cabin fever feeling. We can at least go outside when it is pretty and play and walk, but it is always great to find new inside activities to do with the kids. Birmingham's awesome McWane Science Center has put together some great activities and resources to help us all out. Many are centered around their Itty Bitty Magic City Exhibit so they are perfect for preschoolers. Please enjoy all they have virtually until we can all once again visit in person.

McWane Cabin Fever Activities

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Spell and Get Moving

We all need to keep moving! This great idea came from one of our PEP teachers, Miss Alison. It is a fun way to get kids (and parents) moving as well as reinforcing the letters in their names. Have the child spell his/her name and do the activities listed for each letter as each letter is spelled. They can add their last name if they are able. Parents join in, too. For the young ones, you can do the spelling for them and read what corresponding activity you will be doing. When they tire of just doing their names,  let a child just call out a letter and have everyone do the activity corresponding to the letter. Or learn to spell new words, sigh words, color words, animals.  If they are not old enough to know all their letters, they could draw a magnet letter, or letters you have written on small squares of paper and you can tell them the letter and everyone can do the designated exercise. Happy spelling and moving!

A.    Hop like a bunny 5 times                                   N.     Clap your hands 10 times

B.    Crawl like a crab & count to 10                         O.    Twirl in a circle 2 times

C.     Hop on one foot 5 times                                     P.     Pick up a ball without your hands

D.     Flap your arms like a bird 5 times.                    Q.     Hop like a frog 5 times

E.     Walk backwards 10 steps & back                       R.     Balance on your left foot to count of 3

F.      Reach to the sky & count to 10                          S.      Do 7 jumping jacks

G.     Walk like a  bear & count to 8                           T.      Do Downward Dog pose & count to 10

H.     Make 10 big circles with your arms                   U.     Fly like an airplane & count to 9

I.       Run around in a circle 3 times                           V.     Do 7 toe touches

J.       Run forwards to a count of 10                           W.    Jump up an down 10 times

K.     Hop on one foot 5 times                                     X.     Waddle like a duck & count to 4               

L.      Walk sideways 10 steps and back                      Y.     Balance on your right foot & count to 5

M.     Do the tree pose & count to 3                             Z.     Do 10 toe touches


Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Listen to a Great Book

So much good happens during any crisis in America and this is no different. Many celebrities have joined in reading books for children to see and listen to. Of course, your child always loves to hear you read, but a new voice and a new book can be a special experience. And a really wonderful thing is that it appears there are books being read that appropriate for many, many age levels so this should be fun for lots of age groups. Hoorah!

To make a book  or story more meaningful, here are some extension ideas.

Talking about a story afterwards is a great pre-literacy exercise & can be tailored to your child's age.
After your child watches a story time, ask them some questions. Here are some suggestions, but certainly don't drill them with all of these each time they hear a story. We want them to love books!

What did you think about the story?
Who were the characters?
What happened in the beginning, middle, and end?
Was there a problem to be solved?
Did one character in the story need help or help another?
How did it make you feel?
Was it funny?
Did you hear rhyming words?
Did you like the pictures?
Did you like it?

There are other ways to extend a story and teachers are great at this as well. Depending on your child,
they could draw or paint something the book made them think about. Was there any food in the book? If so, remember your kitchen is a visual learning lab. Figure out something you could make together that reminds them about the book. Did the characters build a fort? Get out the blankets and sheets and build a fort over your furniture. Did they call or write a letter? Help your child do that.

Once again, these are all just ideas. Some days it's just the best thing ever to listen and be done. You know your child, and you know when it would be appropriate to extend story time just a little.

Here are some new links in addition to the story time links from a previous post:

celebrities reading @operationstorytime

Librairin Bookends Present: #unitedbybooksCOVID19

@savewithstories - On this Instagram page, celebrities read favorite children's stories; for example,
Jennifer Garner reads one of the Day School's favorites, Jan Brett's The Mitten

Storylineonline.net - Listen to movie stars and other celebrities read some of your favorite books

@petethecatofficial - Author James Dean reads his books aloud every weekday at 11:00 CST; you can also pull up past stories and watch and listen

PBS Kids -  Marc Brown reading Arthur's New Puppy or go to the Arthur or PBS Kids Facebook pages for more stories

Bedtime Stories Read Aloud - Look for these on You Tube - lots of wonderful books that will be worth listening to with your children

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Tuesday's A Good Day To Be A Kid

Preschoolers are their own breed and really just need to play because playing is learning!!  Building with blocks or playing with any of their various toys, playing grocery store (get creative and pull out some of what's in your pantry and let them shop with your re-usable grocery bags), house (you may be recruited to play a part - maybe a person or maybe the dog!), jumping, running, twirling outside, dressing up, role playing anything and everything are all appropriate activities and the list goes on and on. Kids love being in the kitchen, too, with whomever is cooking so talk about what you are doing and let them "help" in any way possible. This play dough is great to make for kids; it's soft and lasts a good while. Children can help measure and do some stirring until you are working over the heat. Then they can help knead. Be sure to talk about how the ingredients come together and what the heat does to the mixture. Science right there in your kitchen!

2 C flour
1 C salt
4 tsp. cream of tartar
2 C water
4 Tbsp. oil
20 - 30 drops food coloring
scents optional
Combine dry ingredients in a large saucepan. Combine water, oil, and food coloring in a large measuring cup and blend well. Over medium heat, add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients, stirring constantly. Add scent here if you wish, like vanilla. Ball will form. Remove from heat, pour onto wax paper and knead until smooth. Store in airtight container.

And, we know young children love, love, love music and movement. I want to share some links that are great for preschoolers. Bigger kids would really love some of these, too.

Wiggy Wiggles Freeze Dance-Hap Palmer

Roger Day Is doing some live stream shows and has posted lots of videos
          Groovy Joe: Ice Cream and Dinosaurs

          Toddler Tunes Live Stream
          4:15 PM EST Sundays
          11:15 AM EST Wednesdays
          Toddler Tunes from New Haven

          Toddler tunes on iheartradio    

Monday, April 13, 2020

Feed the Birds

The birds are back! We are big bird watchers at my house and have several different bird feeders that help attract them to our yard. We also plant particular flowers that the birds like, too. Start watching the birds and teaching your children their names. Look for nests being built in trees and feathers that may be on the ground. And, make a bird feeder.

All you need is a pinecone(or toilet paper roll if you don't have a pinecone, peanut or nut butter, birdseed and a ribbon or string and your child can do almost every step of this. First, take a ribbon or string and put it around the pinecone toward the top and wiggle it inside as much as possible. Next, spread the peanut butter on the pinecone with a plastic spoon or knife. Then roll the pinecone in birdseed, coating completely. Hang it outside by the ribbon and watch for birds!

This feeder is really simple and a fantastic activity for improving fine motor skills. Get a pipe cleaner and have your child string cheerios on it, leaving about 1 inch at each end. To make it easier, you can tape around the bottom end so cheerios don't fall off. When little fingers have completely filled the pipe cleaner, bring the ends up into a circle and twist the ends together. Find a branch to hang it on!

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Allelujia! Christ Is Risen!

Thanks to my grandsons for sharing their handiwork. Happy Easter!

Be sure to share your alleluia's today and please join us for our Independent Presbyterian Church's Easter service being live-streamed at 11:00 AM if you do not have a home church. The readings and sermon will be live, but the moving music from our full choir and organist and all the beautiful Easter lives will be streamed from last year's Easter celebration. It should be amazing.

If school was in session we would have shared this story as a lesson and at the end of our service, and we would have filed out joyfully singing, "Christ the Lord is risen today, Allelujia!" It would have also been presented in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd atriums. Instead, I am sharing the story as it appears in our Lenten Boxes. It is a glorious story to share with your children.

As we recall the story of Mary returning to the tomb, only to find it empty, she stood weeping outside. Looking into the tomb, she saw two white angels sitting where Jesus had been lying, one at the head and one at the foot. They said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?" She said to them, "They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they had laid him." When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?" Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away." Jesus said to her, "Mary!" She turned and said to him in Hebrew, "Rabbouni!"
(which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, "Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, 'I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'" Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord," and she told them that he had said these things to her.              John 20:1 - 18

Spend  today thanking God for the resurrected Christ and celebrating the gift you have been given. Also thank God for your family and enjoy spending this special day with them. Eat together. Relax and have fun. Be thankful. Be sure you have hung your Easter Art in your windows so your neighbors can enjoy your work as they walk by. And hunt Easter eggs!

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Jelly Bean Easter Lesson from Miss Betsy and More!

Miss Betsy, our Social Studies teacher, shares a great lesson using the colors of jelly beans to tell the story of Easter. I want to share the poem in case there is any technical difficulty.

An Easter Promise

Red is for the blood of God's own Son
Black for the sins we have all done
Yellow is for the morning sun so bright and the day he rose and made all things right
Green reminds us that He is risen!
White is for the forgiveness we find in Him
Purple is for Jesus' throne
Pink reminds me that I am never alone.

A bag full of jelly beans, colorful and sweet
A prayer and a promise and a big Easter treat!

Miss Betsy also goes outside to find things in her yard that match those colors. Can you do the same in your own backyard? If you cannot find everything outside, I bet you can inside your house. 

Bare Feet
I invite you, the parents, to take time to listen to David Seamon's sermon, "Bare Feet," from our IPC Maundy Thursday service. He is one of IPC's pastoral staff, and this sermon was amazing and challenging.  I know you will enjoy what he shares. "Bare Feet" begins at minute 26:56 https://youtu.be/kBRCfm8L5wY, but you may enjoy watching the entire service. Along with Good Friday, it sets the scene that leads up to the resurrection we celebrate on Easter Sunday.

I also invite you to listen to Friday's IPC daily devotion by Lucy Turner; she reads a Psalm in the Chapel. Your older preschoolers might love spending some time in the chapel they visit every week. It is just over 4 minutes long.  https://youtu.be/pDSkbd94dvY Ask them to listen for the word "Light" and to notice the candles burning. We talk about the lit candles representing God's love for us and we they are snuffed out and the children leave chapel, God's love lives in their hearts and goes everywhere with them. 

Children could draw something they think of when they remember the chapel or draw anything that makes them think of God's love. 

Friday, April 10, 2020

Resurrection Rolls

I wanted to share this today so you have time to get the ingredients you need to make these on Easter Sunday. Resurrection Rolls or Empty Tomb Rolls are a great visual for the Easter story, and they taste delicious. Allow about 20 - 30 minutes to complete. This is most meaningful if you let your children help. If you picked up one of the Lenten Boxes for families that we created at IPC, this recipe appears on the Easter page.


Bake these on a cookie sheet or in a muffin tin using cupcake liners. If you are baking with children, share the Resurrection Rolls Easter Story with them.
8 count Refrigerator Crescent rolls or Refrigerated Biscuits
Large marshmallows
Melted butter
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and take out 8 marshmallows
      The marshmallows represent Jesus' body.
2. Dip the marshmallows in melted butter.
      This represents the oils of embalming.
3. Dip the buttered marshmallow in the cinnamon and sugar.
       This represents the spices used to anoint the body of Jesus.
4. Separate the Crescent Roll triangles or flatten 8 biscuits.
       The dough represents the cloth that Jesus was wrapped in.
5. Wrap the coated marshmallow tightly in the dough. Bring the sides up to seal the marshmallow    inside, otherwise the marshmallow will leak out.
       This represents the wrapping of Jesus' body after His death.
6. Place in a 350 degree oven for 10 - 12 minutes.
        The oven represents the tomb.
7. When the rolls have cooled slightly, you can open up the rolls and discover that Jesus no longer there, HE IS RISEN! The marshmallow melts and Crescent Roll is puffed up, but like the tomb -

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Maundy Thursday, Good Friday & Easter Sunday @ IPC

Good afternoon! What a beautiful day here. As we reflect on Holy Week, we realize what is ahead for Christ, but tonight we can share with Him and what occurred on that Thursday so many, many  years ago. This is the evening that Jesus shared the Last Supper with his disciples before being arrested and crucified on Good Friday. Participating in the different remembrances that led up to the resurrection makes Easter all the more glorious. We hope you will join us and click on the link below that will take you to our upcoming Holy Week services:

Maundy Thursday @ 6:30

Good Friday @ noon

Easter Sunday Service @ 11:00

IPC Livestream Services

Birmingham's Own Iron Man

I hope all of you who live in Birmingham have visited the amazing Vulcan Park. And, if not, I urge you to go once parks re-open. It was one of my family's favorite destinations when I was growing up. We actually raced up all 159 stairs that wind up to the top through the statue every time we visited the beloved statue. There is a great view of Birmingham from the top, now accessible by elevator. Now the park has expanded and there is a museum. A great family destination right here in our town.

Some fun facts:
  • Vulcan was named for the Roman god of fire and forge - a forge is a place where metal is heated and hammered into different shapes)
  • Birmingham wanted to share something at the St. Louis World's Fair to highlight our iron industry, so they decided to have an enormous iron statue be built by sculptor, Giuseppe Moretti.
  • Vulcan stands 56 feet, tall and added to the 124 foot pedestal he stands on, rises to a height of 180 feet. 
  • Vulcan weighs 101,200 pounds.
  • Vulcan is the largest cast iron statue in the world.

Vulcan Park and Museum
CLICK HERE for at home STEM activities, coloring pages, and Birmingham history

Some Egg-Cellent Ideas

Kids love love all things Easter egg, the chocolate ones, jelly beans, hiding and searching for them over and over, and dyeing and decorating them. Below are some decorating ideas that may be fun, though they would have been more fun with my grandchildren!

After you hardball eggs and they have cooled, an easy way to decorate is to use markers. Children old enough to write can pen messages, younger children can just color and make designs. They may take a little time to dry - I actually had to blot them carefully with a paper towel before refrigerating them.

Using natural dyes to color your Easter eggs is easier than you think and uses common foods.
To make your homemade dyes, place any of these ingredients into separate pots with 2 cups of water and 1 tsp. salt. (This can take some time, but we seem to have a lot of that right now):
1 C blueberries
2 C red onion skins
2 C yellow onion skins
2 Tbsp. paprika
1 C chopped beets
2 C red cabbage
1 - 2 Tbsp. turmeric
 2 C strongly brewed coffee
Bring water to a boil and boil for 15 minutes.
Strain into jars or ny vessel that will hold 2 C of liquid and add 1 Tbsp. vinegar to each one.
Let cool.
Pour into smaller cups with a plastic spoon in each so children can lower eggs carefully into cups.
Watch your children be amazed!

This is an easy variation on dyeing eggs whether with homemade dyes or store bought ones. Place rubber bands around the eggs in different directions before you dye them. Let the eggs dry before removing them.

Younger children will decorate eggs you draw for them on a pieces of paper. They can be cut out by the child or not at all. Crayons, paint, stamps, stickers, yarn, small craft jewels, glitter. Let your imagination go wild and decide how much mess you want.

Build towers with plastic egg halves. How tall can it go?

Use plastic egg halves and play dough to stick them together and actually create structures.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Get Creative with Jelly Beans

By now,  I am sure you have bought or ordered as the case may be this Easter season, your jelly beans. They are fun to hide in eggs and put on top of homemade sugar cookies, but you can exercise your brain with them. Really!

The cool thing about STEM activities is that there is no right or wrong and you do not have to give your child a lot of guidelines. Problem solving and imagination just come together.

Here is a wonderful STEM idea that uses jelly beans and toothpicks or small wooden skewers:
After gathering the above items, have the child use the jelly beans to connect the toothpicks and make any structure they want to. Little hands may need some parental help poking the toothpicks into the jelly beans, so you can help them get the hole started. You may find a similar easier activity would be to substitute marshmallows for the jelly beans. For older children, you could ask them to build something specific, like a bridge that would hold something (light). This activity can be repeated over and over, just like hiding Easter eggs. Note: I wouldn't eat the jelly beans you use because there may be small wooden pieces left by the toothpicks. Just have a cup nearby of edible ones!

Because of the many colors of jelly beans, they lend themselves well to sorting. Have the child find the matching colored jelly beans and group them into piles. Just picking them up with their little pincer fingers is a great strengthening exercise which they need to have a proper pencil or crayon        grip.
After your child has grouped their jelly beans, have them group like colors into specific number groups. For example, Group the greens into two's, the blacks into three's, and the red into five's.
You could make a chart for them if they recognize their numbers, otherwise sit with them and either tell them how you are going to group a color, or let them decide. They love to feel like they are important, and these are easy ways to 'let them be in charge!" After they are grouped, the older children can count the groups, and even do some addition with the piles. Make it fun and remember, some of your children will need help with some of these concepts.