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A Boat-Building Activity
This column, produced in partnership with Mommy & Me™, provides parents and young children with fun and simple ways to make the most of the time they spend – laughing, loving and learning – together. Use the activities, tips and resources featured here to help you connect with your young ones. 





Ships Ahoy!
Fireworks, cookouts, lemonade stands, family vacations and fresh fruit pies – that’s what July is all about. On a stroll around your neighborhood, you and your children can look for signs of summer: wading pools, dogs panting, bathing suits, picnics, flowers blooming and flags waving.


Summer is also a good time to scout for boats. You and your child have probably seen floating vessels: Our waterways are busy with all types of interesting boats – row boats, sailboats, tugboats, steamboats, airboats, motorboats, cruise ships and barges, to name just a few.


To launch your child’s understanding of various types of boats, gather up magazines with pictures or visit the library or bookstore. Then try this boat-building project, which will teach your little sailor about one of the many different ways to propel boats and introduce the physics of floating.




Mommy’s Materials:



Your Child Will Learn:
• Fine motor skills

• Eye-hand coordination

• Following directions

• Science concepts

• Shapes and colors

• Sponges – one for each boat you make

• Adhesive tape

• Safety scissors

• Paper for sails

• Drinking straws

• Crayons, markers or stickers


o-pagination: none; mso-shading: white; mso-pattern: solid white; mso-layout-grid-align: none; punctuation-wrap: simple">Build Your Boat


1. Assist your child in cutting the sponges into shapes of boats. Rectangles work well. Or you can make one end form a bow by having it come to a point.




2. Make the sail by cutting a small square or a right triangle out of construction paper.


3. Decorate the sail with crayons, markers or stickers. Try using red, white and blue markers and star-shaped stickers for a festive July-Fourth look.


4. Cut the straw to the length mast you would like.


5. Tape the sail to the straw. For a triangular sale, tape the straw to one side of the right angle. For a rectangular sale, tape the straw to the middle.









For more boats and fun that floats from Mommy & Me™ Click here


6. Cut a small slit in middle of the sponge and insert the mast.


7. Float the boats in a tub of water.


8. Blow gently on the sail and away you go!


Ultimate Boat Ride


After you have completed this boat project, take your child for a real boat ride. There are many places you can go to find the perfect excursion. Check out your local phone directory and look under boat rentals! Bon voyage!




 See more Mommy & Me Activities.


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