Posted in ECE Information

WOYC 2021 Daily Activity Ideas

Are you ready for WOYC 2021 which official starts Saturday, April 10 and runs thru Friday, April 16?

We hope to see lots of program doors decorated to celebrate the children in their care. Be sure to share those photos with us. Email: and/or post pictures of your decorated front doors on social media by tagging @MaineAEYC @FCCAM and using the hashtag #WOYC21. 

Now let’s look at the layout for the week ahead……………

Be sure to check out our Pinterest Board: WOYC 2021 Ideas for links to activities that might work within your program for each of the week’s special days. Following are some immediate activity ideas.

Music Monday ~ Music develops language and early literacy skills while being active and encouraging movement. 

Musical Rain Sticks from recycle paper towel tubes

Flatten one end, bend over to seal, staple or tape closed. Add beans, rice, small dry pasta, small pebbles, misc. extra beads. Full 1/4 tube, flatten other end. Hold closed while shake tube to test sound. If like seal. If not open and add more of the filler. Do not fill over 3/4 full as sound comes from movement of the filling. We usually find the 1/4 works well.

Decorate the tube – options, paint, stickers, tissue paper with glue, tape. Add ribbons, glitter……


All you need to make this is 6-7 glasses or jars.  Fill each glass with water in varying amounts going in order from empty to full. Test out the sound of each glass as you fill them so you can get just the tone you want. Adjusted them to get a variety of notes. Try different items for strikers – wooden spoons, metal spoons, chopsticks, sticks from the yard, etc.

Sound travels through water and creates vibrations.  The pitch of the sound is going to vary if there is more or less water for the sound to travel through. The glass with more water will have a lower sound because there is more matter or water to travel through. The glass with less water will have a higher pitch because there is less water for it to travel through.


Cut a ping-pong paddle shape out of heavy cardboard (recycle packing boxes). Decorate as desire. If paint, do one side let dry, then paint other. Markers or crayons work also.

Poked 3 holes on each side of the side of the paddle.  Use a heavy duty hole punch or a screw driver. Using 6 equal lengths of yarn (size so are not longer than the paddle is wide) thread tie off one end per hole and then tie on bead to the other end. Larger beads or wooden beads make best sound. You can experiment using different size beads.

To make music, hold paddle hand and shake it. The beads swing and hit the paddle center making a fun drumming noise.

How to Make the Paper Bag Maracas:

  1. Decorate the bottom third of a paper lunch bag with markers, crayons, paint, or colored pencils, and add decorative tape, and/or stickers.
  2. Unfold the decorated paper bag and place another paper bag inside the decorated paper bag to give the maraca strength.
  3. Place a tablespoon of rice, popcorn, or anything else you would like to use in the inside bag. If making multiple try different things in the different bags and compare the sounds made.
  4. To finish, gather up the sides of the paper bags smoothing them out as you crinkle them up. Spread out the tops of the bags and blow into them to puff out the bottom of the bags. When you have a good shape twist the bottom of the bags to make the handle of the maraca. Use colorful tape such as duct tape or washi tape to decorate the handle and to keep it from unwinding.

Tasty Tuesday ~ This fun, food-themed day is about more than just cheese and crackers. Cooking together connects math with literacy skills, science, and more. Create your own healthy snacks and share the recipes.

Many think of this as “Taco Tuesday”, but we are going to focus on healthy snack ideas.

Apple Slice Cookies:

Slice apple so form circles. Top apple slices with peanut butter (or any nut butter) or even greek yogurt, and then sprinkle with the toppings of your choice: raisins, chocolate chips, nuts, oats, cinnamon, honey, coconut flakes, granola and more!

Healthy Apple Nachos

Healthy apple nachos layered with fresh apples, bits of chocolate, coconut flakes, and drizzled with gooey, warm nut butter and sprinkle of cinnamon. 

  • apples of choice
  • ¼ – ⅓ cup natural nut butter (peanut, almond, sunflower, etc.)
  • small handful chocolate chips (I used Enjoy Life Mini Chips)
  • small handful shredded coconut
  • small handful slivered almonds, optional
  • sprinkle of cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Optional:
  • cacao nibs
  • raisins or currants
  • ground cardamom
  • pure maple syrup

Apples: Wash, core and cut your apples into ¼ inch slices. I like to cut mine into quarters, take a small paring knife and carefully remove the core and upper and lower end where dirt may still be collected (even after washing). Lay apple quarters on a flat surface with the inside of the apple facing up, carefully slice your apple into ¼ inch slices, even ½ inch slices is good too. Whatever thickness you prefer, no rules here! Place apple slices in a small bowl with the lemon juice, toss to coat.

Nut butter: Heat your nut butter just until warmed and somewhat runny. I like to heat mine by using a small silicon bowl placed in a small pot with just enough water to reach half way up the side of the silicon bowl, heat water on low and gently heat the nut butter until warm and drizzable. Alternatively, warm in the microwave for 20 – 30 seconds.

Assemble: On a serving plate, lay your apple slices in a single layer around the outside edge, then layer another small layer over those but towards the inside center of the plate (like shown in the picture above). Drizzle the nut butter in a circular motion, from the middle of the plate to the outside edge. You can also just zig zag the almond butter from one side to the other if you like. Again, no rules – just do what you feel is best! Top with chocolate chips, coconut flakes, almonds and sprinkle of cinnamon (or whatever you’ve chosen to use as your toppings).

Frozen Yogurt Bark Ingredients

  • plain Greek yogurt – Full-fat Greek yogurt for yogurt bark because it’s thicker and a bit more rich, but can use regular plain yogurt if that’s all you have and low-fat yogurt if you’re wanting to cut back on the fat content.
  • maple syrup or honey – the maple syrup in this recipe sweetens up the Greek yogurt just enough. If you want to keep the recipe super low in sugar you can use plain yogurt without sweetening it.
  • vanilla
  • strawberries & blueberries – you can use any fresh berries you like
  • unsweetened coconut flakes – the coconut flakes are optional, but they do add a nice (almost chewy) texture to the yogurt bark.

Start by lining a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Make sure it’s rimmed! We don’t want a yogurt mess in your freezer.

In a medium bowl or measuring cup, stir together the yogurt, maple syrup and vanilla. Pro tip: I like to make my own flavored and sweetened yogurt so I know what ingredients are being added. You can start with a plain yogurt and customize from there! That said, this recipe will certainly work with already flavored and/or sweetened yogurt.

Spread the yogurt mixture on the prepared baking sheet and scatter the strawberries and blueberries on top. Sprinkle with the coconut flakes.

Place in the freezer for about 3 hours or until the yogurt is firm. Cut or break into pieces and serve.

Store your frozen yogurt bark in an airtight container in the freezer until you’re ready to serve. Bringing it out of the freezer a few minutes before serving, just to let it soften up the tiniest bit. The yogurt bark will keep up to 3 months in the freezer. 

Work Together Wednesday ~ In Construction/Building together children explore math and science concepts and develop their social and early literacy skills.

Our Pinterest Board for Work Together Wednesday (construction building and building social skills) took the idea of “working together” especially this past year and looked at the building of social skills. Building with blocks is a great place to start the adventure. Developmentally providers know that block play allows children take turns, share materials and cooperate with others, forging new friendships. This work encourages self-reliance, increases attention span and develops their sense of self. Never mind all the STEM that’s happening too.

Check out our Block and Construction Sets Board

Or maybe our Loose Parts Board

Have an active “Block” area? Change it up today by bringing in some unusual building materials like sponges, small paper cups, washers/nuts/bolts, egg cartons, straws and etc.

Artsy Thursday ~ Develop creativity, social skills and fine motor skills with open-ended art projects where children can make choices, use their imaginations, and create with their hands.

Our Artsy Thursday Board has ideas from “cardboard roll printing” to “Ice cube painting”.

Have you every colored coffee filters with markers and added rubbing alcohol to the activity? Be sure to have something under the coffee filter as the marker ink blends through. A fun 2 for one activity.

Do a very random painting activity using a variety of tools (traditional or not), but mix it up by cutting up the finished painting and then glueing down on another sheet of paper. This works if you cut the paper in strips, rectangles or randomly.

Use up odds and ends of paper (great use for those cut off end lengths), or have the children cut new paper into strips (scissor practice), toss into a contain for everyone to use and then build a sculpture.

Family Friday ~ Engaging and celebrating families is at the heart of supporting our youngest learners.

As we celebrate each child’s family, it’s important to remember the diversity of today’s families. Our Family Friday Board shares ideas that can be used with whatever family structures are present in your program.

Building a house for the family. Learning about shapes in the process. Surprised they all chose red. There were other colors available. Each child will draw their family into their house.

School-age made homemade books from watercolor papers they had previously painted.

They filled their books with information about family members, pets, favorite activities, etc.

Posted in ECE Information

Let’s Celebrate Week of Young Child!

WOYC 2021 is April 10 – 16

WOYC is an annual week long celebration of young children with hands-on, collaborative activities encouraging movement and healthy lifestyles through music, food, and art spearheaded by MaineAEYC in Maine. Through our partnership with MaineAEYC, FCCAM encourages Maine’ family child care providers to join in the celebration.

Let’s start with decorating the front doors of our child care programs! We can raise awareness, celebrate children, and bring families, businesses, schools, and child care programs together by decorating doors across the state of Maine. The idea for decorating front doors came about at a York County Early Childhood Coalition meeting around WOYC ’21. Mardi Gras this year was celebrated by decorating homes vs floats and FCCAM’s representative at this meeting raised the idea of programs decorating their entrances/program site since there was not going to be the in person celebrations for WOYC this year.

So please join FCCAM and MaineAEYC in transforming your front door into a colorful display of support for young children and early educators. Have your children and/or students help with the process. Post pictures of your decorated front doors on social media by tagging @MaineAEYC, @FCCAM and using the hashtag #WOYC2021.  You can also encourage your families to join the celebration by decorating their doors and sharing.

Looking for ideas? Check out our WOYC 2021 Pinterest Board.

You can download and include Week of the Young Child 50th Anniversary Signs as part of your decoration: 
Black and White

Week of the Young Child is a time to recognize and celebrate quality early learning experiences and all the benefits they offer. Let’s join our peers across early childhood education and showcase the learning experiences and activities children participate in within our child care programs.

Providers are invited to submit thier activity/project ideas to MaineAEYC by March 31st. Selected activities/projects will be highlight on their social media and e-news! As family child care providers we invite you to also send to FCCAM PLC, so we can share on our social media and website.

Activity ideas are for:

  • Music Monday
  • Tasty Tuesday
  • Work together Wednesday
  • Artsy Thursday
  • Family Friday!  

Submission checklist:

  • Step by step directions – so that others can easily recreate your activity
  • Materials List
  • Photograph (optional, with permission for any children pictured).
  • 1 or 2 ideas to extend the learning/play, MELDS