Magical Childhood Newsletter
Volume 54
April 26, 2003

Hello Magical People!  This should be the last newsletter before our little one arrives.  He was due last Thursday so I figured I should send this out.  :)

I hope you're all enjoying the changing seasons.  I've been waddling around the garden with my enormous belly, planting roses & irises, and spending days in the back yard with the girls.

My evil computer ate my newsletter list yet again, just as I was about to send this off to you two days ago.  My mother always said this sort of thing was good for your character, so I figure my character must have needed a bit of tweaking.  <G>

I've got a little of this and that for you this time so I'll get right to it...

Sensory Integration Techniques~

I got to attend a fascinating conference recently on sensory integration disorders and how to uses different techniques to help kids settle down, focus, behave better and even score higher on tests.  The presenter, Diana Henry, was a real advocate for children and her methods have proven to be wonderful for children, especially those who aren't "typical" in terms of their sensory needs such as those with autism spectrum disorders and ADHD-like behaviors.  You can look at her web site if you're curious about her work: (as always, no affiliation!).

Here is just a bit of what I learned that I wanted to share with you...

I was encouraged by all of the stories of parents, teachers and even principals who learned about Sensory Integration techniques and how they help children, and then managed to bring about real change in their schools for kids.

One principal arranged for playground equipment designed just to fill children's needs for actions like spinning.  One school designated a teacher "Mrs. Hug" so that children who needed hugs during the day could seek her out.  Many teachers changed gum chewing rules with their students' help and successfully brought gum into the classroom to help the kids without ending up with gooey messes.  Schools brought back recess and brought it back earlier in the day to help kids.... there were so many examples of parents, teachers and administrators working together to change the rules, despite the bureaucracy.

It was a fascinating and really encouraging conference! I'll include more SI information in upcoming newsletters.

Here's a creative craft to use with care for older kids.  Tie-dye rocks!

Conni wrote in to say that her librarian sister, Cathy, knew the author of "If you give a mom a muffin.  She writes:

"The author is Kathy Fictorie.
The author of the original is Laura Numeroff."

Thanks Conni and Cathy!


Magical Mama Faye in Sweden sent in these great ideas for one year-olds:

1. Painting with water (great in summer outside) a bucket of water with a child size paint brush and let the kids paint when they like - it dries itself. Good learning tool for older children.

2. Help mum - adapt games/ toys from what you are doing. Small children like to copy us. E.g. give handful of pegs to play with when hanging out washing, handful of flour to rub/feel and spread over high chair when baking, dust brush after you have swept,
wrung cloth to wipe after you have wiped off high chair.

3. Home made rattles - put some rice/dry pasta/dry lentils in an empty soft drink bottle. Tape the lid on and let baby/toddler crawl after the sound as it rolls around. Can also put pegs in the bottle. My two and half year old wanted to get the things out so I
changed to pegs then and left the tape off so he could learn to undo the cap.

4. Pounding toys - saucepan lids are still favourites although I insisted they be used in a room other to where I was. Slightly less noisy are plastic bowls and wooden spoons.

5. When babies my boys love to act out "Humpty Dumpty", just to watch mum fall on the floor like Humpty had them laughing and begging "again, again".

6. When walking or out, take the time to chat, explain and predict your surroundings to your child. E.g."look over here is a crow, I think he is waiting for us to go so that he can feed in our garden" etc.

All wonderful ideas.  Thanks Faye!


This site has free appliqué patterns you can print out and cut from fabric scraps.  Not only are these a fun way to personalize your children's clothes, but they can be a great way to rescue clothes with stains or holes.


Magical Mama Jackie sent in these fun songs and rhymes about the wind (original authors unknown):

Whistling Wind - Song - Sung to If You're Happy And You Know It

If you hear the whistling wind cup your ears
If you hear the whistling wind cup your ears
If you hear it in the trees
Making music with the leaves
If you hear the whistling wind cup your ears

If you feel the blustery wind whirl around
If you feel the blustery wind whirl around
If you feel it lift your hair
Like a kite up in the air
If you feel the blustery wind whirl around

Noisy Wind - Song - Sung to The Farmer In The Dell

I like the noisy wind
I like the noisy wind
It roars and mutters (voice loud, then softer)
And shakes and shutters (shake hands tambourine style)
I like the noisy wind

I like the noisy wind
I like the noisy wind
It flaps the flag (flap your arms back and forth)
And rustles my bag (rub hands together briskly)
I like the noisy wind

I See The Wind - Fingerplay

I see the wind when the leaves dance by (dance hands around)
I see the wind when the clothes wave, "Hi!" (wave hand)
I see the wind when the trees bend low (bend arms over and down)
I see the wind when the flags all blow (wave arms high)
I see the wind when the kites fly high (raise arms high)
I see the wind when the clouds float by (wave hand gently)
I see the wind when it blows my hair (lift hair with hands)
I see the wind 'most everywhere (hold hands out, palms up)

The Playful Wind

The wind came out to play today
It blew the clouds out of its way
It blew the leaves, and away they flew
The trees bent low, and their branches did too

Look Outside - Song - Sung to Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Look outside now, can you say
What the weather is today?
Is there sunshine, is there rain?
Is wind blowing down the lane?
Look outside now, can you say
What the weather is today?

Look outside now, can you say
What the weather is today?
Are there snowflakes falling down?
Are there big clouds floating around?
Look outside now, can you say
What the weather is today?

Thanks Jackie!

Magical Mama Lonni recommended this wonderful site that tells how you can get chickadees to eat from your hand.


We reorganized the articles section of the web site a month or two ago.  I've divided the articles into groupings like practical, magical and educational.

One of the newer articles is "What should a 4 year old know?" -- with both practical ideas and my slightly different list than the ones you usually find online.  :)  I'm working on several others now, too.  It may be a while with our little one's upcoming arrival though!


Here are some ideas on how to create private spaces for kids:


Daryl has a neat trick he uses when he needs the girls to stand still and put up with hair brushing, face washing and other activities that make them want to take off running.  He has them sing their favorite songs while he does it.  When they're occupied with their singing, they happily stand there for the dreaded grooming-- or at least they do for a lot longer.  :)


10 Ways to Make Today Magical....

1.  Mail your child a postcard telling her how much you love her.

2.  Haul out a bunch of funky, fabulous, festive clothes and have a photo shoot.

3.  Write a song together and record it yourselves singing it.

4.  Head to a large park and rent or borrow some roller blades, a boat, kites or bikes.  Spend the day outside doing something new together.

5.  Sketch your child as he sleeps.

6.  Plant something together.  Make it meaningful and start a tradition of caring for it together.

7.  Have the whole family eat lunch with your hands tied behind your back.

8.  Call in and dedicate a song on the radio to your child.

9.  Go rock hunting for smooth stones and use paint or permanent markers to write inspirational words like "courage," "strength," "love" or "laugh" on them.  Put one in your pocket on days you need it, and let the kids do the same.

10. Have a Thanksgiving in April.  It doesn't matter when or if your country celebrates the Thanksgiving holiday, take the time to make a special meal and talk about all your blessings.  Take turns talking about what you're thankful for and take a moment to contemplate how very lucky most of us are.  You can take the opportunity to talk with your kids about how to help others.


There is a lot going on in the world right now.  It can be hard to feel that it's very magical at times, and hard to know how much we should be doing, saying, acting and even paying attention-- especially with children to take care of.

I have strong feelings about all that's going on but my foremost purpose with this newsletter has always been to support those who support children.  Please don't take my silence on these important issues as a lack that I don't care.  Like all of us, I care very much.  All of the families affected around the world and in my corner of the world are in my thoughts and prayers.

And now, it's time for me to sign off.  With the next newsletter, I should have a new family member to tell you about.  I'm off to pretend to clean something and curse the maid some more.  ;)

Take care, and don't forget to take care of you!


A Magical Childhood
Copyright 2002, Alicia Bayer

A Magical Childhood Newsletter is just something I throw together because I love children and those who love them.  To subscribe, send a message to  We do not use ads.  It's not about money.  :)

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