My husband recently had to leave town for an extended period of time. I thought my children had a good understanding of the fact he was gone, but it didn’t take long to realize they really had no concept of what the number of days actually meant. My son was saving cherry tomatoes from the garden to give to Daddy. My daughter would make plans for when Daddy would be home before bed or the next morning. I realized we needed a visual so they could understand.
I had just scored blue and pink post-it notes at Target for only $0.02 (Thank you Target.com coupons!), so I wanted to incorporate them into our project.
I gave each child a piece of white cardstock and had them thoroughly color each side making it as personal and special as they wanted.
When they finished, I used a LARGE black permanent marker to write out the numbers on either side of the cardstock to make a chart of sorts.
Next, I had the kids take their post-it note pads and cover each number with a post-it note. For being 2 and 3, I thought they did surprisingly well! They also loved it!
We hung up their charts where they could see them and discussed that each day at breakfast they could pull off a post-it note and when they were all off, Daddy would come home that day. It worked wonderfully!! They had a much better concept of when he would be back, and they loved to play with their post it notes they pulled off each day. I think it was kind of like a daily present for them with a BIG present at the end!
There are so many different ways you could have your kids craft this type of project based on your child’s age and available supplies. You could have doors that open by attaching two pieces of paper together with pictures on the bottom one and doors on the top. You could use brads to turn attached pieces of paper with a picture or number underneath. These could be used to countdown to a relative coming to visit, a birthday, an upcoming trip, or anything else. I’d love to hear your ideas for future countdown projects!