littleBits Smart Home Kit Review

littleBits Smart Home Kit Review

You may remember our first post featuring the littleBits Deluxe Kit, which we love!  In fact, my oldest son in particular fell in love with littleBits and begged for the Smart Home Kit.  I contacted littleBits to see if they would be interested in another review and they said yes!  We were sent this kit to review in exchange for this blog post and our thoughts about it.

littleBits Smart Home Kit



What exactly is littleBits?

littleBits is a simple way to learn and invent with electronics.  There is a vast module library and the modules snap together with magnets so it’s impossible to make a mistake. The library has over 60 modules and growing. littleBits kits come with individual Bits and detailed, step-by-step instructions for building your very first inventions.

The littleBits system is modular so every Bit works with every other Bit in the library!  There is tons of info on their website!


When the Smart Home Kit arrived, my 13 year old son was thrilled.  The other kids like it too, but this one was mainly for PacMan.

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Even I didn’t really understand why he wanted it so badly, but he explained it to me {well, he tried}.  He had spent loads of time on the littleBits website researching the kits.  He actually begged for the One of Everything Collection, I laughed. The Smart Home Kit was the main kit he wanted and he has had so much fun with it.  It also combines with the Deluxe Kit we already had, so he is now able to create even more!

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His favorite features of the Smart Home Kit are the following…

    Don’t ask me what each of those snazzy things do, I have no clue.  I am so not an electronics gal but am so glad he loves this and knows what each one is and why he loves it!
    One of his projects I snapped some photos of, a timer! he just loves creating and messing with stuff like this.  My husband really likes this too and is so thankful we now own these sets.

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You can purchase the Smart Home Kit here and see all of the other littleBits kits here!  I know there are probably MANY kids out there who would just love something like this as a gift!

Fall Leaves Many Ways ~ Fun Fall Leaf Art

Fun Fall Art ~ Fall leaves Many Ways

{Disclaimer ~ affiliate links used, full disclosure at bottom of site}

We recently enjoyed an intense crafty session creating fall leaves using many different methods! I would have only attempted one of these per day when my children were younger, maybe even 1 per season!  Now that she is 6 and loves this {and is MUCH easier}, we tend to do more! Fall leaf art time was definitely FUN for us!

I gave her several options to create many different fall colored leaves and let her choose! We used her big blue MessMatz {we got on Zulily} and our colored plastic trays {from Oriental Trading}. I printed a variety of leaves from our Fall Leaves Coloring Pages, all on cardstock.

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Grab your free fall leaf printables here!

Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring Pages


Her first choice was glitter glue.  I got these at Target in the Dollar Spot last year, and pulled out the fall colors for her. My idea was for her to outline the leaves with the glitter glue, her idea was to use it more like paint and smear it around.

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Her next choice was my very favorite ~ shaving cream paint!

First, squirt some shaving cream on a tray, then drizzle paint on top as shown below.  Use a stick to swirl paint around gently.

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Lightly press your paper on top of the mixture and pat it. 

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Let the paper sit for about a minute and then use a squeegee to pull the shaving cream off to show the beautiful paint underneath!

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We also did this with some of the bigger leaves, also in the fall leaves coloring set.Fall Leaf Art -9815

See our video peek inside of this project and how we did it, as well as the others in this post!

Fall Leaf Art

We had loads of fun creating many different kinds of fall leaves, and then made calendar cards out of the small ones!! I would have never attempted this big of a crafty mess all at once when my kids were younger, but now it is totally doable! **BLOG POST with more photos & details ~**See more VIDEOS on our YOUTUBE Channel ~**SUBSCRIBE to our blog posts ~

Posted by 1+1+1=1 on Sunday, September 13, 2015

Next up was marble painting!  First, I challenged her to try to do it on this tray, which she could totally do but didn’t want to focus so much!

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In the past we have used a cardboard box, but this time we used a clear plastic box and washed it afterward.  Be sure to tape the paper down before you do this.Then add drops of paint and put a marble in.  It’s a fun game trying to get the marble into the paint and onto the paper!

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She got the leaf so paint-y, I couldn’t even see the lines so I just cut out a leaf shape!

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She loved sponge painting! We have small cut up sponges that we use for water play and painting. 

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She hasn’t done tissue paper art like this in a very long time!  The last time I remember doing it was here! Make a mixture of water and white glue {basically water down the glue a bit}.  Use a paint brush to brush the glue onto the paper and then lay colored pieces of tissue paper on top.  Paint over again to seal any loose edges.

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Finally, Q-Tip Art!  She really enjoyed this a lot!

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Here’s a video peek at how we made the shaving cream and tissue painted leaves!



We let all of her pieces dry overnight, some were really damp so they took awhile!

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We laminated them since we decided to make calendar cards with them!

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I used a dry erase marker to write on the leaves, so if she decides to use them for something else next year, we can!

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See more Fall ideas here on our Pinterest board!

Follow {1plus1plus1} Carisa’s board Fall Theme on Pinterest.

Tot School Gathering Place Week 140

Welcome to Tot School™ Gathering Place! Gather together here, gather ideas from other blogs, share your own ideas on your own blog. Browse around at the other posts linked up, leave a few comments if you have time, and be sure to check back to see if your blog was featured!

Each week we will feature photo{s} and ideas from blogs who link up. Remember, provide a link back to Tot School Gathering Place within your post that you link up, so you can be considered for the feature!


Are you feeling the fall? It’s still a bit warm here, but fall to me also means routine! We are slowly settling into our school routine and enjoying the learning going on! What are you and your Tot up to? Don’t forget to share all your creative and fun ideas with us here at the Gathering Place! See directions below about linking up with us!

Are you looking for a fall art project in which your entire family can contribute? Check out the neat idea that Munchkin’s Mama from Adventures in Tot Schooling found and implemented with her family.

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Are you working through Tot School a second (or third) time? Do find that there are differences in how your Tots handle Tot School? Mama Alicia is enjoying her second round of Tot School with Tot Miles, but is also noticing how different the second time around can be! Check out what Tot Miles worked on for his red theme over at Teacher Turned Mama.

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What could be better than combining Minions with science? Head on over to Make This The Day to see how Mama Andrea combined the two!

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Were you featured? You are welcome to a button but you certainly don’t have to use it! Totally optional! Tot School Feature

<center><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="I was featured for Tot School!" src=""/ ></a></center>

Do you have your FREE

Where to Begin with Tot School eBook?


See the Tot School webpage here!

Follow {1plus1plus1} Carisa’s board Tot School Ideas on Pinterest.

Grab our FREE Fall Leaf Colors Q-Tip Painting Printables for some great fine motor skill work!

Fall Leaf Qtip FB

 Are you NEW or have never been featured? Read this! Basics: write a specific post about what you did with your tot, link up the permalink from your post, link back to Tot School within that post, put your tot’s age in months in ( ) like this: (43 months).

Teach Your Child to Read Free Flash Cards and Giveaway!

I am excited to have Janine from True Aim here to share how she teaches her children to read with a Free printable and giveaway!

Teaching your child to read is easier than you think and it can be a lot of fun! With just 10-15 minutes a day, you can help give your preschool or kindergarten aged child a head start, or help them improve their reading skills.

First hundred words free flash cards printable

This post contains affiliate links and a giveaway!

When I decided to start teaching my child to read early (around 3 yrs old), there were so many different programs! It was a little overwhelming. I tried Teach Your Baby to Read, The Reading Remedy, Starfall and many others. They were things I liked about them, and things that I felt were missing. There had to be a better way. After researching, My husband and I came up with our own program. The Blue Manor Phonics Reading Set helps your children learn to read by teaching the sounds of the letters first, and in all caps. This is to prevent children from memorizing the shape of the word and has them focusing on what the letter sound is.

Teach your child to read phonics curriculum

The Phonics Book in Level 1 starts with a few basic sounds and has your children blending the sounds to make words right away! This helps motivate them because it makes it more meaningful to them than just learning a bunch of random sounds. Plus, practicing combining the sounds is the KEY to reading. Here’s a quick video to show you what Level 1 looks like.


After completing Level 1, your child will have learned to read their first 100 words! Then they will be ready to read the early readers perfect for their level. These readers are unique in that they have the pictures featured on the next page so your child practices blending the letter sounds instead of being distracted by the pictures. You can use the curriculum just like it shows in the video; review and learn a few sounds each day for 5-15 minutes or however long your children like. Most of the time we do that because it is just SO easy and then sometimes we use activities to reinforce letter sounds or combinations that they are struggling with. Here are some examples of the activities we like to do.

Learn to Read Activities

1. Letter Sounds Bean Bag Toss

2. Alphabet Cube Puzzle Printables

3. Race to a Letter

4. The Reading Road

Use this FREE printable of the First Hundred Words flash cards that go with the curriculum to play exciting Flash Card Games and make it fun for your child!

Teach your child to read flash cards  

To get a FREE children’s eBook each month, sign up for the Blue Manor Newsletter!


Teach Your Child to Read Giveaway!

5 lucky readers will win a FREE Phonics Reading eBook Set from Blue Manor {enter to win using Rafflecopter below.

You can also save 50% on the Blue Manor Preschool Set until 9/30 with code: 1plus1E50

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring Printables

Free Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring Pages

We have a brand new set of Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring printables for you!

The idea behind “Just Color!” is simple ~ theme packs all focused around coloring. There are mostly coloring pages, and a few coloring activities. The coloring pages are all in one download to make it easier to download and print all at once, in case you have coloring monsters like I do!

If you want to make a mini coloring book, you can scale down PDF files, like we did as you can see below! 

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I prepped the little owl coloring book for my daughter by scaling down to 2 per page.  I then trimmed around the edges, leaving extra space at the top.  I punched holes and attached with metal rings rather than staples.  She likes to take the pages off as she works on them, and this keeps them nice!

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Here’s a peek at the different coloring pages in this free printable set!

Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (2) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (13)Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (3) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (4) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (5)Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (6) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (7) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (8)Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (9) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (10)Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (11) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (12)Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (14) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (15)Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (16) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (17)Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (18) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (19)Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (20) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (1) Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring  (21)


Download the Fall Leaves & Trees coloring printables and more here!

Look for this graphic and click to download!

Fall Leaves and Trees Coloring Pages


If you have any problems downloading or printing these or other PDF files, see troubleshooting tips here.



See more Fall ideas here on our Pinterest board!

Follow {1plus1plus1} Carisa’s board Fall Theme on Pinterest.

Fall Leaf Coloring Pages