Thursday, November 3, 2011

a big red geoboard

Well, the cold front blew in and the weather thingee on my computer tells me it's supposed to snow on Saturday. Almost as much as I hate the blazing heat of summer, I dread the stuck-inside-all-day-ness of a long cold winter. (Am I ever happy about the weather? Of course I am. Spring and fall. That's about it.)

I've been collecting ideas of stuff to do so that we all make it out of winter alive this year.

Artsy and craftsy stuff that I find around the internet.

File folder games that I made when I was a teacher (first grade level but my boy's a genius so I think he can handle some of them).

Other stuff I'll share (some day when my kids decide to take nice long naps at the same time).

First on the list, the geoboard I made.


The best part about this geoboard, it was free. I didn't buy a thing for it. I know at some point in time somebody paid something for all the supplies but it wasn't me. So free it is.

Back in the olden days when I taught school, my students used geoboards like these. Plastic ones with little plastic pokey things that they hook rubber bands around to make shapes. They were a big hit with the kids. I figured I could make my own.

I found some wood in the garage. I don't have a saw to cut it quickly and easily in half (to make one for each kid) so I just figured we'd use this as a lesson in sharing. Bonus.

The paint was leftover from the float we built for the parade the summer Cate was born.

I found the nails in the back garage, right next to the maraschino cherries, spray graphite and the waterproof adhesive bandages.

I painted that board and then when it was dry, measured and hammered my life away. I'm good at measuring. I'm not so good at hammering. I only ruined about 6 or 7 nails, I'm happy to report. In the end, I had almost exactly the right amount for my ginormous geoboard. I only had to search for 2 or 3 more to replace the ones I bent so badly they couldn't be reused. Oops.

Please excuse the state of disarray of my children's fashion. Just keeping it real. Danny has a shirt on. It's just around his waist. Cate pretty much lives in the princess dress and fairy wings. I promise I do brush her hair. I usually just wait until we're going to be leaving the house.

The kids enjoyed the geoboard once I showed them how to build shapes with the rubber bands. Cate likes making a shape and then saying, "What shape is that, Mama?" Then I tell her and she says, "Good job!" I taught her trapezoid. She calls it crapazoid.

Look at her "I'm Really Concentrating" lip. I love it.

Here's the kicker. This geoboard I made is totally a hazard. You know how marbles are fun and all but pretty much a choking hazard? Same with the geoboard. Except it's an impaling hazard. Can you imagine the horror if your kid accidentally fell face first onto that thing?

You've got to take the good with the bad I guess. Good: learning stuff. Bad: a nail in the eyeball.

The kids only played with that geoboard on the floor once. That was so they could be in front of the living room window so I could have good lighting for these pictures. Now it sits on the kitchen counter, never to be moved. Since I pretty much live in the kitchen, they're always supervised if they want to play with it.

So far, no injuries.

Only happy kids and crapazoids.


Marisa said...

So fun! I loved those things when I was a kid. Maybe if I restricted play to the dining table, they wouldn't be able to reach to impale themselves. Hmm. Worth a shot. They're on their own when it comes to snapping rubber bands, though.

Great idea!

Arlene (CO Kid) said...


I've never had kids get hurt on them. You could hammer them in further when you're needed to get rid of some frustration.

Cathy said...

I tried hammering down more. The wood gets really hard after a certain point. That's why I ruined a few nails. Plus, I'm no good at hammering and they started getting wonky when I nailed too far.

Sell...Party Of 4 said...

You are a genius.