Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Easy Art Activities For A Snow Day Or Any Day (Part 3)

This Part 3 in a multi-part series. Here are the previous posts you may have missed:

So your children have moved beyond experimenting with art supplies and you need some ideas to engage them? No problem! My solution? Collect, save and access art ideas as needed.

3. Gradually Gather and *Actually Use* Easy Art Ideas

Before Pinterest, I was a ripper. If I saw a cool art or craft idea in a magazine...RIP! was torn out and filed away. But that takes up space (which I don't have) and if you are a piler (like me) I'd have to sort through MOUNDS of ideas to find the one I was looking for. If you are a filer, it would be easier, but who has time to file!?

So I love Pinterest. It allows me to pin ideas and categorize them (quasi-filing) and access them later. I rarely rip stuff out anymore (which is helping the clutter a bit).

The point is--gather ideas as you go. If you see something that you think your child may like to do in the future--grab it and file it so you can easily access it in the future. Think easy projects with supplies you are likely to have on hand. Then, on snow days or lazy days at home when you hear the "I'm bored!!" posse coming for you, whip out the ideas and look through them with your child. I often browse my "Art Ideas" board with my five-year-old in the mornings when he needs to create but can't think of something. Sometimes just looking at a picture of a project is enough and he'll run off to the art center and create-a-way. Sometimes I need to get involved and gather some special materials not in the Art Center and walk him through getting started.

We've done a TON of projects this way! It's great because we are actually doing the things I pin (my Pinterest surfing is not in vain!) and he's practicing his cutting, gluing, collage, and painting while being truly engaged since he's the one choosing the projects.

So here are a couple of pin-worthy projects for you to keep in mind for the next day off:

Aluminum Foil Quilt Squares
These are easy and addicting and all of my children were able to do them (even the 2 1/2 year old with a but of help). We mounted a few of them on mat board to protect them and make them easier to display. I found the instructions here at Piikea Street.

Chalk Shapes
This project kept my little ones busy for a while the other day. Cut a shape from cardboard (we used cereal box cardboard), put a little roll of masking tape on the underside to keep it still on your paper and then place it on a dark piece of paper. Trace around it with colored chalk or pastels, then *before you remove the cardboard shape,* gently wipe with tissue to smudge the chalk a bit. Ta-da! Beautiful!

Other Projects to Check Out:

LOVE these Magic Carpets from use materials you have on hand and who wouldn't want to make a magic carpet and go to a far off land! Where will YOU go?

And check out these Paper Sculptures from Sharpie Woman! Awesome! My five-year-old made a ton of these last week and even the two-year-old tried her hand at them. They are fun on a shelf or hung on the wall ad are a great way to use up all of those paper scraps you've been saving in your Art Center!

Other ideas to get you started? 

  • Use masking tape to "write" your name on cardboard or poster board, paint over the whole thing and then remove the tape for a great sign for your room!
  • Try your hand at printmaking using Legos or other found objects around your home (ask mom first!!).
  • Make Magic wands or fairy wands or search the web for "Notan" for some paper-cutting fun! I have an easy version of this here with my "Positively Cute I Love You Project."
  • Get out the clay and make dinosaur fossils or press found objects like sea shells into the dough
  • Make a snow sculpture outside or bring a bin full of snow inside and make a snow sculpture in your house! Or make a snow fort inside for your Playmobil guys or Matchbox cars!
  • And of course, you can always search the Create Art With Me site for more inspiration! (Hint hint!)

What are some of your go-to projects for easy fun? Anything you've done that engage your kids for awhile. I'd love to hear about them!

1 comment:

  1. With the noturious Pittsburgh weather we get here every winter, you better believe we get some snow days. It's nice to see some activities that i can do with my kids inside and not just out. Thanks for the post, i like it a lot.


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