"Functional" Tot Calendar

This is definitely one of those “function over fashion” projects. I began it during a snowstorm and decided to use only materials I had laying around the house. I thought it would only be a “draft” of what may come - however, after the amount of time that went into it, I decided that it’s staying as is. Sure, if I owned a laminator, or had some nice foam board on hand, or a lot more velcro in the house, I’m sure it would have turned out a lot more “fashionable”, but hey, I’m sure Myla doesn’t mind. 

I had been planning on making a calendar for Myla for quite some time. Being a spirited toddler, transitions are not easy for her and hence, not easy for me. She hit the terrible two’s quite early and ever since insists on doing everything herself and choosing WHEN to do it as well - she likes to call ALL the shots. I have yet to find any parenting tricks that work. Some days go smoother than others, but most days are quite challenging especially when we are on a schedule. 

I thought if I could put together a calendar with pictures of our activities, including the not-so-fun ones like errands and chores, that it would help ease us through the day as she would know what to expect when I say it’s time to start our day - making US more functional. I also wanted to use it as a teaching tool for days of the week, colors and the weather. It only took her two days before she started walking over to the back door to check the weather for the day so she could add her card to the calendar

Making the Calendar:
I used a large piece of cardboard which I believe came from the Ikea table/chair box. I split it into sections by painting each day its own color and finished the raw edges with black electrical tape. I found various clip art images to represent the weather and different activities: Music, Soccer, Playdate, Play Outside, Park, Errands, Chores, Grandparents, Cousins, School, Library, Pool, Beach, Walk/Hike, Road Trip, Special Activity and Holiday. I resized and printed each one, and glued each to a 3 x 3 piece of card stock. (If this was going to be a “fashionable” project, you could be sure that I would have drawn all my own images!). I typed up and printed the days of the week, as well as the side bar titles, and glued those directly onto the board. The only item I had to buy was the little colored clothespins (found at Michaels for less than $2) of which I glued 4 in each column. I also glued one to the back of the star image (glued on card stock and sealed with Mod Podge) which we move daily to indicate the day of the week we are on. Finally, I used some ribbon I had laying around and hot glued it to the back. I wanted to hang it somewhere that would be easy for Myla to see and use so I chose the side of our kitchen island. This spot makes it a great opportunity for us to talk about our day while eating breakfast. 

I must say that so far I’m really impressed by Myla and her use of the calendar. I wasn’t sure if this project was going to be a wasted effort. However, in addition to talking about the weather each day, she also uses it to talk to her dad and grandparents about what she did that day. The only thing I may add is words to each of the activity and weather cards to further use it as a teaching tool.

This is one of those projects that proves you don't need fancy materials on hand or to spend money on a bunch of new supplies to make something fun and functional.