Countdown Calendar to Fun!

Posted in AUTISM, CRAFTS
on May 21, 2013

Are your kids driving you crazy with anticipation over your upcoming vacation or the next big holiday? Make this countdown calendar for them to help to make the wait time seem a little shorter and whole lot more fun! 

A calendar to make waiting for a trip or event less frustrating and more fun

Real conversation in my house:

Kid: Are we going to the beach in August?

Me: Yes. In a few weeks.

Kid: Is it August yet?

Me: No. It’s still June. First we will have Memorial Day, then birthdays, then July 4th, then at the end of July, it will be August.

Kid: (Gets a calendar and switches the month to August) Is it August now? Is it time to go to the Beach?

24 Hours later

Kid: Is it August yet?

Me: Still May, Dude…

 

UGH

HOW TO MAKE A REUSEABLE COUNTDOWN CALENDAR

I just love this time of year – the anticipation of all the fun activities, birthday parties and holidays coming up leaves us all a little giddy! We usually try to get some camping in before camping, when it starts to get too hot for me it to be comfortable. Then it’s camping, and before you know it, it will be beach time, not to mention all of the fun things in between! What is not so much fun is the constant “is it time yet??” questions from my kids.

Countdown Calendar

To ward off the constant questions, I created this little countdown calendar, and it is a lifesaver! It’s fun for the kids – for all of us really – to keep track of the time leading up to an event or a holiday. For my youngest child, it’s a tool we use to help him manage time and reduce his anxiety with change – major mom win!

Countdown calendar tutorial - camping tile

Rather than creating a countdown calendar for just one event, I decided to make one with reusable event tiles for throughout the year, complete with free calendar numbers that you can find here!

WHAT YOU NEED

Countdown Calendar to help count down to holidays or vacations - supplies

Hot Glue and Glue Gun
Decorative and plain card stock
Plastic lid from 10 oz coffee can or similar size circle(to use for pattern)
Optional Holder for extra calendar numbers (I used a tin bucket from Target)
Decorative sticker packets and letter stickers

 

 

WHAT TO DO

Create your calendar numbers

Countdown Calendar to help count down to holidays or vacations - number tags

1. Print your calendar numbers onto cardstock and cut them out.
2. Attach your calendar numbers to the top of a clothespin, and add a ribbon accent.

Create the calendar face

3. Use your scallop paper punch and decorative cardstock to cut enough circles to go around the edge of your clock face.4. Use hot glue to attach the circles to the edge of the back side of the clock face. Be sure the patterned side of the cardstock is facing outward.
4. Use hot glue to attach the circles to the edge of the back side of the clock face. Be sure the patterned side of the cardstock is facing outward.5. Use hot glue to attach a magnet disc to the back side of the clock face for hanging.
5. Use hot glue to attach a magnet disc to the back side of the clock face for hanging.6. Turn the clock face over, and using your letter stickers, write out “Countdown to…” along the edge of clock face front. Use hot glue to attach letters if necessary.
6. Turn the clock face over, and using your letter stickers, write out “Countdown to…” along the edge of clock face front. Use hot glue to attach letters if necessary.
7. Add the “hook” side of a Velcro dot to the center of the clock face with hot glue.

Create your event tiles

Countdown Calendar to help count down to holidays or vacations - various holiday tiles

8. For each event tile, cut a circle of felt using your coffee can lid as a guide.
9. Attach the “loop” side of velcro to the back of each event tile
10. Adhere your event stickers to each tile.

 

Tip: The sticker packets often go on clearance at Michaels and Joanns throughout the year – this helps reduce the cost pretty significantly. I also tried my hand and making my own sets. If you are interested in trying this on your own, you can find free patterns here.

Countdown Calendar to help count down to holidays or vacations - christmas and thanksgiving tiles

To Use

Place your calendar in high visibility area. Attach an event tile to the center of Countdown Calendar. Clip the number of days until the event around the outer edge of the calendar. For example, if an event is two weeks away, clip the clothespin days 1-14 around the outer edge. Each day, have your child remove one clip, counting backward.

I created tiles for most of the major holidays, as well as a few personal tiles to represent our annual beach trip, camping trip, and trips to the zoo – my son’s favorite!

Countdown Calendar to help count down to holidays or vacations - countdown calendar and tiles

My son and I began counting down to our upcoming camping trip, which helped him to understand the number of days left until our leaving day, only adding to his excitement! It has curbed the repeated questions about when we are going, and it’s so much easier for him to understand when he’s able to see it visually. It’s a hit!

I can’t promise your kids won’t drive you crazy, but at least in my home, this project has curbed the repeated questions about when we are going. It’s a hit for us and I hope for you as well!

I had so much fun with it that I even added a tile of my own. I figure if perhaps if I just start counting down the days, a plane ticket to Paris will magically appear? A girl can dream, can’t she?!

Countdown Calendar to help count down to holidays or vacations - we will always have Paris

 

(Some of the links I posted are affiliate links. In exchange for advertising their product I get a small commission from your purchase from the seller to keep my blog running- You don’t pay more for your product. Thanks for supporting Knock it Off Kim!)

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