I am beyond excited about our unit on the Letter B. I’ve created an entire bakery for Lilly Belle to play with for the next two weeks. We have invited her friends over to play tomorrow afternoon and I can’t wait to see all of them pretending and playing together! There are so many elements to this bakery but it was all really pretty simple to put together (just took a bit of time). Lilly Belle has already been playing with it nonstop. I tried to do a good mix of solid play elements as well as some things we can work on together as math activities.
Felt Donuts: I looked all over Pinterest for ideas and found the sweetest felt donuts all over! I decided to recreate the donuts from the clip art I found on Etsy and used on the menu and order tickets I created for her (free printable below). They were super easy to make and I just hand sewed them with embroidery floss, felt and cotton stuffing. I used a glass bowl to trace out the circles and actually just used a little purse sized lotion bottle as the middle circle. So easy! I only made 5 because they took about an hour to make each of them. I worked on them at night while watching movies with Matt and during our handicraft quiet time in the afternoon when Lucy was sleeping. Once I made the donuts I couldn’t stop! Felt and embroidery floss are so inexpensive – just 39 cents/sheet and 39/cents for a thing of while floss. I got a bag of the stuffing for $5.00. So for all 5 donuts it was under $10.00. The girls will play with them in their kitchen for years and years, so I am pretty excited about that! Here are some links for supplies like we used for each of these activities too.
Pretend Cake Pops: I used styrofoam balls and cake pop sticks to make these. I’ll use the rest of the sticks to make real cake pops for the girls so I didn’t mind spending the $1.99 on those. Lilly Belle painted the balls pink and then I had her roll them in a bowl of glitter. We put them in a pink mason jar we had stuffed with cotton balls. She is obsessed with the pink cake pops from Starbucks so this was a hit!
Pretend Pies: I have been wanting to do this for her forever. I saw it on Pinterest almost a year ago and kept meaning to make these for her to play with and now had the perfect opportunity! I got a pack of 2 pie tins, cream colored felt and then craft pom poms we had in our preschool supplies. I cut the felt to fit into the bottom circle and had Lilly Belle glue it in. Then I cut the felt into strips and hot glued it like a pie crust around the edges. I did this on both pie tins. I cut more strips out so she can weave the top of the pie crust over the pom poms. I filled an empty plastic Strawberry container with the blue and red pom poms to be the strawberries and blueberries for her pie making. I am going to have her use our large tweezers to put the pom poms into the pies as a fine motor skills activity too.
Felt Cakes: Dollar Store to the rescue again. I got 2 packs of foam circles and felt. I had Lilly Belle glue the foam circles together and then just cut the felt to fit over. Lilly Belle glued the felt on for me so she could help. Then I just decorated the cakes with white puff paint. Easy and again a toy that the girls can play with for years in their kitchen! These only cost $1.39 each.
Menu and Order Tickets: You can download the menu and order tickets I created right here for FREE! I printed the order tickets out 2 to a page and cut them out. I printed like 30 of them because she is going to be using these the most. When we order from her, she uses them as the waitresses and checks off what we want. We then have her try to add up our total and practice writing the number on the total line. She also likes to give them to us as our bill and receipt.
Paper Cookie Activity: We have a Dollar Store cookie sheet that she uses for her work sometimes and when we play with magnets so I put that out with brown construction paper, cookie cutters, scissors and a pencil. She traces the cookie cutters out onto the paper and then cuts out the cookies. This is a great fine motor skills and pre-writing activity! This was 100% free because we already had all those supplies here at home.
Pretend Milk & Starbucks: Another super easy idea! I had two little milk glasses and filled them with cut up strips of white and brown construction paper and a straw. Now she has chocolate and white milk to serve in the bakery. Easy and adorable! I went to our local starbucks and told them that I was making my daughter a pretend bakery and asked if I could buy some cups/lids/sleeves from them for her to play with. I asked for 2 of each size with the matching lids. They gave them to me for free – super nice! I’m pretty excited about this because we are going to let her play with these to serve coffee in the bakery, but we are also using them for math. We are going to be doing patterns with the different sizes, count the cups, order them by size, and practice matching the different sized lids to the correct cups. I love this one!
Cupcake Tin Activity: I put out a cupcake tin and liners. I am going to let her play with these when we play with the birthday cake cloud dough we made, and we are also going to do math with these. We have pink and yellow liners so I’m going to have her do some counting and patterns with them. Separating the liners and placing them into the cups is a good fine motor skill as well.
I am going to be doing a complete separate post on the Birthday Cake Cloud Dough because it is pretty much the best thing ever! I have been having as much fun playing with it as she is.
This play area has been a HUGE hit! Lilly Belle walked all around Disney last night telling cast members about the bakery that I made for her. Letter C is coming up next and we will be transforming this into a coffee shop. I am glad I’ll be able to keep most of this out for her then too!
You can check out more as we play through the next few weeks on our Instagram!