Review ~ Activity Bags
Years ago when I first started homeschooling, I had many little toddlers in the house. When I was trying to come up with activities to keep them busy, while I worked with my older girls another mom told me about Preschool Activities in a Bag ebook. We just LOVED all the fun ideas in this. So when the opportunity came up to review some of their other books, I was super excited!
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this product for review, all opinions are 100% my own. This post may contain affiliate links my full disclosure can be read here.
Note: The company Activity Bags has closed. I've left this post up because it's a wonderful resource if you can find a homeschool co-op running Activity Bag swaps.
Activity bags were started by two mothers Paula and Sherri, Paula is a mom to 7 children and Sherri to 4. Back in 2002 Paula was trying to come up with fun and educational ways to keep her younger children busy while she worked with her older ones. Sound familiar?
Yes, it's something ALL of us homeschool mother face isn't it? After brainstorming with her friend Sherri they came up with some great activities that became the Preschool Activities in a Bag ebook 1, that I loved so much. Over time they have added more wonderful ebooks to their line, covering topics of reading, math, science, and travel games.
So what exactly are Activity Bags? They are kits you put together that have everything needed for that activity in a ziplock bag. This makes it easy for the child to open and get started, no hunting for missing supplies!
The books were designed to be used in a swap group. So each person would make up 1, 10, or 20 etc. bags of 1 activity, they you would swap the bags with other mom's making up different activities from the book. I've seen online swaps held for these activities as well.
Since we don't belong to a co-op right now, I used these books just to print activities for our own family. Some of the books include a Coordinators Handbook to help organize your swap, but it can also be downloaded for free on their website if your ebook doesn't include it.
I was given Math Games in a Bag ebook, and Science Experiments in a Bag ebook 1, ebook 2 and ebook 3 to review.
Math Games in a Bag is a 201 page ebook with instructions for 33 fun math games. These games are intended for elementary school aged children. The activities use materials that you likely already have around the house, things like cards, dice and markers. There are games to help children learn how to add, tell time, playing restaurant and adding up orders, and so many other wonderful ideas.
Science Experiments in a Bag ebook 1 is a 164 page ebook, with instructions for 25 fun experiments covering topics in biology, general science and nature.
Science Experiments in a Bag ebook 2 is a 153 page ebook with instructions for 25 experiments covering topics in chemistry, human body, and general science.
Science Experiments in a Bag ebook 3 is a 151 page ebook with instructions for 25 experiments covering chemistry.
As I mentioned, these books were designed for use in a co-op swap. Since we are using them for just our family, I'm doing things a little differently. I try not to do to much printing all at once, so I'm printing a few activities each week. It won’t take us to long to build up a good stock of them this way! Since most are reusable, it will be fun many times over when the kids want to use the activities.
I love that at the front of each ebook is a page that lists what each activity and what topics are covered by it. In addition to that it lists all the supplies you'll need for that activity. I printed off this list from each ebook and placed them in my homeschool planners notebook. Using this list, I can easily make a shopping list for any small items we might not already own.
I also love that in the science books there is a page that tells you what science concepts each activity covers and if it is an indoor or outdoor activity! This might seem like a small thing, but with the crazy weather we have had this year, and since we have long cold winters it helps me know what activities I would like to save until spring.
Some of the fun science experiments are building a worm farm, burying garbage to see how it decomposes. We are trying that one with fruit peels and other less stinky ideas. lol I'm already looking forward to starting into the chemistry book, that one is full of fun ideas including learning how fires are put out, what items can and can not dissolve and the difference between freshwater and saltwater, and so many more!
We really love the Activities in a Bag books and would recommend them to anyone looking for a fun way to add learning in your day. Right now Activities in a Bag are offering a FREE sampler ebook for filling out a survey on their website. This would be a great way to try out some activities and see if they are a good fit for your family!