Elizabeth spotted a bag of mixed nuts in the shell at our rinky-dink grocery store the other day which carries about nothing interesting – but this was interesting! Unfortunately, we were not having a good day that day, and so I did not purchase the bag, with the result of a 5-year-old tantrum (not as bad as a 2-year-old tantrum, but not so much fun in public either). These tantrums have become pretty common in the last few months since their father moved out. But, that tantrum did not make her forget that bag of nuts, and that evening, when it was all over, she decided that I was going to go back and get that bag of mixed nuts the next morning – no excuses. Hmmph, who’s in charge here? I wasn’t so sure I was going to pack us into the car and make a trip to town just for a bag of nuts the next morning…but I did.
You would expect that we first cracked them and ate them, but I had things to do, like make lunch, before we got to that, so the nuts were sorted and sized and guessed at what was in them. Then they were layered on top of the container of walnut pieces as some of the nuts in shell were obviously walnuts; these became a “nut cake.”
After I got lunch served, we tried out cracking them, and since I didn’t have a nutcracker, I used a hammer – which to a 2-year-old is pretty exciting! We all tried some of each of the nuts, which consisted of walnuts, hazelnuts, filberts, almonds, and something else which I can’t recall the name of now.
After lunch, Paul had to go down for a nap, so I could not open any more nuts with the hammer, but the nut fun didn’t end there! Oh no, those nuts got folded into- and imprinted on- play doh, sorted, counted, measured, driven over by mini monster trucks, fed to my American Girl doll, cooked in the play kitchen, and pretty much any assortment of other ideas one could possibly come up with for playing with a simple nut. After Paul arose from his nap, they got tossed into the empty fish-tank that is sitting in the kitchen needing to be put away (and not clean anymore now), tossed around the living room (against my orders), put into the inside of the plastic microphone and sang into, and rolled down the Fisher Price® City Sky-line race track thingy. As the day wore on, I just could not believe how many ways there were to enjoy a good nut!
Share your thoughts: What are some materials that got used in completely unexpected ways at your house/classroom?