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I take care of a couple of preschoolers a few hours each week. Lately they are into "lacing". I made my own lacing boards. Store bought ones run from $2 to $12.
First, I found some coloring book pictures of items they liked (dinosaurs, princesses, race cars, horses, etc.). I copied them so that I had 2 pictures of each, one copy of the picture normally, and one that I scanned and reversed, then printed. Then I colored them and cut them out.
Next, I took thin cardboard from a cereal box and cut it to the same shape. I glued the colored shapes on and let them dry overnight.
The next day, I covered both sides with clear contact paper, then used the hole puncher to punch holes all the way around, every 1/2 inch.
Finally, I found some shoe laces and yarn for them to use as the lacing.
I made these for pennies. It helps little ones develop fine motor skills and finger dexterity.
By mom-from-missouri from Plattsburg, MO
Cut a large shape out of a laundry bottle. Next cut an identical smaller shape. Punch holes along border of both shapes. Cut the smaller shape into 3-4 pieces to create puzzle. Provide string with knot on end. Show a child how to line up the puzzle shapes to lace.
By Barbara from Boston, MA