An Eggcellent Game


Before you throw away that egg carton or your plastic eggs from an egg hunt, grab a timer so you can play the following fun game.

There are a few ways to play but you will only need the following items:

Recycled egg carton that carried 12 or 18 eggs
12-18 Plastic eggs that fit in the egg carton – both halves
A timer
Pencil and paper


Open the egg carton and take your plastic eggs apart. 


The object of this game is to put all the plastic eggs together and then back in the carton as quickly as possible.

How to play

  • Set the timer to zero.
  • When the player is ready, start the time.
  • Once the timer starts, the player will put the halves of the plastic eggs together in any order, as quickly as possible, and put them in the carton.
  • Once the carton is full, stop the timer and record the time.
Tip:  Having another player work the timer is a big help.
Once players get good at the game, it’s time to add some challenges to keep it interesting.
  • Players can match the colors instead of mixing them up before putting them in the carton.
  • Players can beat their best recorded time.
  • Put a time on the clock and get all the eggs in the carton before the time runs out. Try it by matching colors too.
  • Put all the halves together in the carton, then take them apart as quickly as possible while the timer is running. Record the time.
  • If you are using a carton with 12 openings, use one with 18 or more.
Have fun!

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Monster Mash

Monster Mash, by Bobby (Boris) Pickett and the Crypt-Kickers

The ‘Monster Mash’ is a fun song co-written by Bobby “Boris” Pickett and Leonard Capizzi, in 1962. After every major record label turned the song down, Gary S. Paxton’s, of Garpax Records, decided to produce it. The song reached the #1 position on the Billboard Hot 100 chart on October 20, 1962, remained #1 for two weeks, and sold a million copies that year!
In 1973 it hit #3 on the UK Singles Chart and sold a million copies again! 

Not bad for a one-hit-wonder!

As a matter of fact, it has been considered a Halloween favorite every year since its release 50+ years ago. 

Can you guess how the “Monster Mash” got its name?

A few dances were popular at the time of its release, the “Twist” and the “Mashed Potato” were two of them, and they inspired the name of the song.

If you would like to sing along to this song, you can find the lyrics here.

The video below is a fun, kid-friendly cartoon version of the song.

Sing a long to the Monster Mash!


Wikipedia: Monster Mash

Wikipedia: Bobby Pickett

YouTube: Learn How To Do The Monster Mash 12:59

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Inspiring People: Cardstacker


Photo by Kevin Lam from Vancouver, Canada
Guinness World Record holder, Bryan Berg is a self-taught cardstacker. He builds amazing structures out of plain old playing cards.
He doesn’t bend or fold the cards, nor does he use tape or glue to keep them together. 
You have got to see the AWESOME things he can build in order to believe it!



Visit Bryan’s official website to learn how he builds these amazing structures

It may be a good idea to have a deck or two of playing cards handy, because after watching the inspiring works of art done by this gentleman, viewers will want to recreate some of the stunning structures that they see! Some viewers may even be inspired enough to create their own amazing structures!

Tip: Have a recording device handy so that you can capture the budding cardstacker while they are creating a work of art! Take pictures and/or video footage at every stage, and even in between! Use the time-lapse option on your video camera for quicker viewing later on.

 Updated 2020
How This Guy Stacks Playing Cards Impossibly High | Obsessed | WIRED

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Make Your Own: Net-Bag

The nicest thing about this net is that there is a working string on it so that you can close what you catch inside the bag long enough to get a good look at it. When you are finished observing, you can open the net and set what you catch free.

To make this net-bag, you will need:

A wire hanger, needle-nose pliers, mesh bag with string, a dowel 5/16” x 36”, and duct tape

1. Bend wire hanger into a circle
2. Straighten the hook part of the hanger with pliers
3. Push the end of the hanger through the area of the mesh bag that has the string coming out of it.
4. Put the bag around the circle.
5. Test string by pulling it to make sure it still closes
6. Use duct tape to secure the straightened end of hanger to the dowel by wrapping tape around wire and dowel a few times.

The net-bag is for observational purposes only. Be careful not to hurt what you catch.

Tip: If you don’t want to make your own, the dollar store may carry inexpensive nets.

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Photo by FranW

Make Your Own: Nature Backpack

If your family is going out to explore the world around them, a nature backpack is a great thing to grab as you are running out the door!

You may be wondering what a nature backpack is and what’s in it?

A nature backpack is bag filled with useful items that you can take with you whenever your family goes out exploring. Children can fill their own backpacks up with the items that they want to take with them as well.

Here are some of the things we add to our backpacks:

  • Water
  • Compass
  • Flashlight
  • Nature Journal (sketch book and/or notebook)
  • Pencils (regular and colored)
  • Sharpener
  • Eraser
  • Ruler
  • Safety scissors
  • Tape measure
  • Pencil case
  • Plant and animal identification books
  • Work/garden gloves
  • Tweezers
  • Binoculars
  • Various sized plastic bags (clear)
  • Various sized plastic bottles (clear)
  • Magnifying glass
  • Snack (trail mix)*
  • String
  • Camera (We use our phones)
  • Water
  • Bio-scope
  • Clear cup
  • Old flat sheet or beach towel
  • Bag for trash
  • Insect repellant and after bite (we make our own)
  • Sunblock
  • Rain poncho
  • Dark construction paper (black or blue)
  • Child friendly first-aid kit*

* Denotes link to activity

Fill your backpack with items that fit your family’s needs and take it with you when you visit parks, zoos, and other outdoor areas. You never know when someone is going to be inspired to record what they see around them, so make sure they have access to some kind of creative outlet (journal, camera, video recorder).
Go over safety rules with your family and make sure they understand how each item in the backpack can and should be used. For safety reasons, consider exploring places together. 

We usually keep a small duffle bag in the car filled with extra clothing, sunblock, insect repellent, after bite, rain ponchos, extra snacks, a regular first-aid kit, and some other items.

If you do a lot of traveling, you may be interested in keeping the book Carschooling by Diane Flynn Keith with you.

Disclaimer: is not responsible for any injuries that may occur while exploring the great outdoors.

The following activities have been designed to inspire fun and safe learning experiences.

Make Your Own: Child Friendly First-Aid Kid

Make Your Own: Trail Mix

Make Your Own: Net-Bag

Resources to help you explore more of your world…

Frog Research Project

Bird Watching Activities



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Nature Backpack by Fran W.

Spark of the Day: Pom – Pom Shooter

Here’s a great way to turn simple items into a fun activity!

Items Needed:
Toilet paper tube, 12″ balloon, packing or duct tape, scissor, pom-poms, a large container and recycled plastic water bottles or yogurt containers 
Optional items:  A measuring tape, paper, and pencil
What to do:
  • Cut off the top of a balloon, new or recycled
  • Put one end of the tube into the balloon – leave a few inches at the bottom for shooting.
  • Tape the balloon into place.  
  • Put a pom-pom into the open end of the tube and shoot it out by pulling back on the balloon.
The object of the activity is to try and get the pom-poms into a container or shoot them across the room and measure how far they go. My family has a great time with this activity!
Safety rules
Before we begin playing, we talk about the dangers of shooting people and pets and prohibit the shooting of sharp and/or hard objects; the shooter is meant to be a fun toy not a weapon.
Here are some of the things we like to do…
  • Shoot pom-poms across the room, into containers, and at various targets. My youngest child (age 2.5 at the time), quickly figured out how to use the shooter and played right along with us!
  • Using 5 pom-poms each, we shoot them into a large container one at a time, and keep track of each one that makes it in with tally marks (llll). After 3 tries for each player, we count our tally marks by 1’s, 5’s or some other agreed upon number.
  • Shoot light objects out of the device such as: ping-pong balls, aluminum foil balls, paper balls, etc.
  • Use a tape measure to see how far some of the items go and write down the results of each shot.
  • Stack recycled yogurt containers or water bottles and knocked them down with ping-pong balls.
  • Shoot more than one pom-pom at a time to see what happens.
  • Ask questions, predict what may happen, experiment, observe, compare results, find answers and track results.
Record Keeping & Benefits
  • If you need to keep track of what you do for educational purposes, you can take a picture of the device and write a caption under it or print out this page and make a list of the activities you did on the back of the page along with the educational value of each activity.
  • It may be fun to keep track of the distance of each shot on graph paper.
  • You can also date your score page and add it to a math and science folder.

Natural Benefits: This is a science-based experiment, physics in nature. If players ask, “what if” questions, try to predict what may happen, experiment, observe, compare results, find and track results, they are working on the scientific method.
When score keeping is added, it turns into a fun-based math activity.
This is also a fun way to repurpose!
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Spark of the Day: Outdoor Charades

You will need: Old magazines, index cards, markers, scissor, and glue

Cut out nature pictures from an old magazine and paste each one on its own index card.
As an alternative, clearly write one nature-related word on each index card with a marker.
Here are some picture/word suggestions: tree, squirrel, bird, flower, clouds, leaves, shell, rock, stick, branch, berries, grass, dog, cat, rabbit, etc

How to play:

One player picks a card and acts out what the card says without speaking.  All the other players take turns guessing what the player is trying to act out until someone comes up with the correct answer. The first player to guess the answer correctly gets to pick and act out the next card.

As a rule, the player acting out what the card says can not point to the object if it happens to be in the area.

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Charade Cards
Photo by FranW

Spark of the Day: Bottle Toss Game

You will need: 2 – 3 recycled water bottles, sand, water or dirt, and a hula hoop

Set-up: Fill each water bottle a quarter of the way with water, sand or dirt, and place a hula hoop on the ground.

How to play: Stand about 5-10 feet away from the hula hoop and toss each bottle into hoop.

Keep score if desired.

Tip: Try tossing or rolling other objects into the hoop.

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Bottle Toss Game
Photo by Fran W.