Mamma's School

Home Education Adventure

Category: Art and Craft (Page 1 of 3)

Slippery Snails Art and Craft Ideas.

Slippery snails art and craft ideas snail craft snail art www.mammasschool.co.ukWe have been studying snails in the Nature Curriculum.  Slightly hindered by the snow on the ground, so admittedly it has been mainly theory based.  However, it hasn’t stopped us enjoying some snail art and craft.  We had lots of ideas, but just did three.  I have to rein myself in sometimes as there is so much I want to do with them, but that makes it all a rush, rather than a chilled afternoon creating.  Check out my snail pinterest board for more ideas

https://uk.pinterest.com/mammasschool/nature-curriculum-snails/

 

 

Our first idea was spotty dotty snails.  There was paint in tubs on the table, and each one had a cork in.  The children then made snails by dotting various colours of paint with the corks 🙂  I love (and so do they by the way!) using alternatives to paint brushes, just to show them that thinking outside the box is fine.  You don’t have to paint with a paint brush because that is they way everyone usually does it.  They loved the results, and we had three very different pictures, depending on how they had decided to use their corks.

Our second idea involved using paper plates for shells.  First of all the trio drew a snails body on cardboard before cutting it out.  Next they decorated the paper plate shell in any way they desired, before gluing it onto the body.  We used pipe cleaners for antennae.

slippery snail art and craft ideas snail art snail craft www.mammasschool.co.uk

The final craft was using Hama beads.  These are very popular in our home, and ours are out and used almost everyday.  It is very rare for Dadda and I to go up to bed and not find some sort of Hama bead creation gift left on our pillows by any one of the trio.  This one is our little lady’s creation…all her favourite colours!!

I hope you have enjoyed reading about our craft ideas, and will have a go yourself 🙂

 

Spring Crafts-9 Sunny Spring Craft Ideas.

Spring crafts 9 sunny spring craft ideas spring equinox www.mammasschool.co.ukHaving had the spring equinox on Monday 20th March, we have used this as our theme this week.  So all our crafting has been spring crafts.  Lots of lovely fun sunny spring craft ideas, to make us feel that we are finally saying goodbye to our long winter (and hat wearing).

 

 

 

The first of our spring crafts is a finger painted garden.  You first need to do the background.  A band of green on the bottom, a thin band of yellow above, and a wider band of blue above that for the sky with fingerprints.  You can then add thumbprints in a variety of colours for flower heads.  We have also added some dots of contrasting colour in the centre of some of ours, as well as a few random stems.  All our smaller dots were done with cotton buds.

Next up we have fork flowers!  My trio loved doing this, as they love using anything but brushes to paint with.  We painted some green stems with brushes, and then added different coloured flower heads with forks dipped in paint.  Sometimes I think these crafts are quite simple for our little lady who is 9.  However, she loves doing them, and that is the main thing.  She is learning to think outside the box a little, and then she stays on at the table being creative more at her level with everything she has just learned.

Our third craft is a very effective hand print tree.  We brushed our hands in brown paint (created by mixing red and green as we don’t have brown!).  We then did a hand print on the paper that served as the branches and tree trunk.  Next we used ear cleaners to make the blossom effect.

 

 

 

Continuing with the blossom theme, it is spring after all, our next piece was similar but using a different technique.  This time we painted a brown branch.  Then we used the bottom of a fizzy pop bottle, dipped in paint, to make the blossom print marks.  This was the first time we had used pop bottles to paint, and it was very effective.

 

 

We then went onto some spring mini beasts. We cut a leaf from green card, that we had drawn on.  We then stuck pom poms onto the leaf to make our very own hungry caterpillar.

 

 

They enjoyed making a caterpillar so much, we stuck with that mini beast, and created one from a paper plate.  We cut a section of paper plate rim and decorated it.  The trio then styled a face/antennae to their fancy, and stuck it onto the front of the plate.

 

Naturally, having done caterpillars, they wanted to move onto butterflies, so we did just one today (lots and lots of ideas!!).  My trio each drew a butterfly shape on card.  They then cut this out.  They painted one side and folded it in half to make the pattern across all of the wings.  We then sliced the top portion of a bendy straw, to pull apart for antennae, and glued the rest of the straw into the middle of the wings.

The penultimate idea for spring crafts was an egg carton flower.  We cut a four section of cups from the carton, each painting theirs to their own tastes.  We stuck a bright pom pom in the centre, and a straw as the stem.  Easy peasy!

 

 

 

The last of our spring crafts ideas was to actually use a little bit of nature itself and do some nature threading.  We collected various items from around the garden, and used a needle and thread to thread them together.  The trio made their various creations, and then we used them to decorate their bedrooms for a few days.

I hope you have enjoyed reading about our spring crafts, and have as much fun doing them as we did 🙂

Spring Crafts 9 sunny spring craft ideas spring art fun www.mammasschool.co.uk

 

 

Thimble and Twig

Bird Craft Activities

Nesting bird craft activities bird feeders edible nests www.mammasschool.co.ukA new week and we have a new Nature Curriculum topic, nesting birds.  We have enjoyed a busy afternoon making and creating bird craft.  We picked three to do, but over on my Pinterest page (Mamma’s School) there are lots more ideas if you fancy a peek.  Just choosing three meant that we could take our time and enjoy our bird craft more 🙂

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Craft – An Unstructured Play Day

Today is the first day of what is called sportlov (the Swedish for ‘sport’s break’, due to people generally taking off for a week’s skiing). We are staying put, and I have deliberately taken a break from our nature curriculum this week to slow things right down.  Today (apart from the weekly food shop, which is never a joy with all three in tow!), it was a craft day.  A day where a lot (not all!!) of the craft supplies were plonked on the table, and they were left to just imagine and create.

I have often gone on about the benefits of unstructured play for children on the blog (and there is another post coming in the near future).  By this I mean totally child led.  No interference from adults, no ideas or direction from adults, just pure child pursued activity and busyness.  My trio love craft, but very often we have a theme, or a certain supply/skill we are using.  Today I wanted them to be able to indulge in whatever took their fancy.  We had out a LOT of craft supplies, but not all!!  I put out sponge painting resources,  scissors (very good for development and they will spend many hours happily chopping!), glue, sellotape, chalk pastels, paint palettes, and pen stamps.  They have a craft box too which we put out that contains essentials – googly eyes, lolly sticks, sequins, pipe cleaners, pom poms, feathers, old birthday cards etc etc.  I got everything out and then let them just get on with it for the afternoon.

Fans, animals, paintings, drums, books, birds, solar systems, and many other things were made.  There was even team work present.  I was caught up doing something and twin 1 wanted to make a paper fan but hadn’t got the skill of being able to fold it.  In stepped twin 2 with all his knowledge (unasked) and showed him in a very grown up manner….I was really happy to see them work like this.


Perhaps my most favourite creation of the day though was a little bird by twin 1.  This is real progress for him.  Both twins have only recently started drawing stick men (complete with massive heads) and have seemed to come on quite quickly since (toes and fingers were started to be added to the drawings last week!!).  Twin 1 made his bird by drawing wings, a body, and a tail feather part (which you can’t see now due to the feathers, but it even has zigzagging bottom edge detail).  He then chopped these all out as separate parts and glued them on, complete with smiley face!!  As you can see he was as equally chuffed with his creation. But for a mamma working hard with him everyday, it showed me that he could think up an idea, plan it out, and then actually produce something that was recognisable.  Little steps everyday, but we are certainly moving forwards 🙂

Craft-An Unstructured Play day Art and Craft www.mammasschool.co.uk

 

Getting Crafty With Evergreens

crafts with evergreens exploring nature nature based learning www.mammasschool.co.ukThis week’s nature curriculum topic is evergreens.  There is a lot of fun that can be had doing craft with this theme.  All our ideas can be taken outdoors, but not for us this week.  With knee deep snow on the ground and minus temperatures, it would have made it rather awkward!  Here are the ideas we chose to do.

 

 

With our evergreens we made nature paintbrushes.  Usually you’d get a stick, and attach what you are making as a brush with something like string or an elastic band.  We had ready made handles though, as our evergreen supplies came complete with sticks already.  However, as we were going about making nature brushes, we decided to add some variety to what we were doing, and made brushes from moss and lichen too.  These we did attach to twigs with elastic bands.  The children enjoyed the patterns the paint made using these nature paintbrushes.

Pine cones are good for making characters from.  My trio made some conventional ones ( a horse and an owl), and some unconventional ones (long legged aliens).  I had just left the craft supply box of things such as googly eyes, feathers, lolly sticks, pipe cleaners etc.  and let their imagination and their creativity get on with it:-)

 

 

The third craft we opted for was sparkly cone mobiles.  Anything involving glitter is always a winner in this house!  You decorate your pine cones from your evergreen tree, making sure it is covered in an ample amount of glitter.  At the same time making sure you are wearing said glitter everywhere, and the house now has a sparkly sheen to it.  Once the cones are decorated, loop string around the cones, hanging them vertically.

Although, we had these three main ideas, there are a lot of other things that can be done with evergreens.  I left all the supplies out for a few hours, and a lot of other creativity took place as well.  We had animals made from moss and lichen, collages were created, and a random pom pom caterpillar was made 🙂

Thimble and Twig

Earthworm Craft

earthworm craft nature based craft exploring nature www.mammasschool.co.uk

This week’s theme in the Nature Curriculum is earthworms.  The post is all about our earthworm craft we have been doing at home on the topic of earthworms 🙂 We did four little projects that ranged from being clean activities to thoroughly messy ones!!  I hope you enjoy reading about them, and fancy trying one or two at home, to help get your little people interested in earthworms.  They can all be done outdoors immersed in nature, but as it has been snowing for 2 days (and is still snowing) and it is up to our knees when we tread in it, we are doing our earthworm craft indoors 🙂

 

 

The first earthworm craft we did was wrap pipe cleaners around a twig, and then stick googly eyes onto the end.  A nice simple craft, that even my little men with short attention spans enjoyed doing, as they are quite fast to make!

Onto the second earthworm craft which involved threading beads onto a pipe cleaner, attaching a pom pom on the end, and gluing googly eyes on again.  My trio are quite keen to use these as bookmarks.  This is a good learning opportunity for my boys to practise their threading of small items.

Painting with earthworms was our third craft.  I had cooked some spaghetti, and put plates with paint on them, onto the table.  The children then either dipped a handful of earthworms into the paint, or one single one.  They all really enjoyed this messy craft, although I am not too sure this was supposed to happen……

The last earthworm craft was the most favourite.  We made an edible wormery.  Using a clear plastic cup we put some chocolate ice cream in the bottom (sand). Next we then added smashed Oreo biscuits on top (soil), and then repeated again ice cream and the Oreo layer.  The effect should be a nice layered look, but it didn’t quite look so neat!  They tried though and had fun.  In the UK you can buy jelly worm sweets to add onto the top.  Here, we have had to chop a long lace like sweet up for our worms.

Candle Craft

Candle craft craft with candles craft fun www.mammasschool.co.ukThis weeks craft needed to involve candles.  I could have kept it easy for myself and just made candles!!  However, we had done this recently with a kit our little lady got for her last birthday, so I tried to come up with some alternative ideas.  So, here goes!!

 

 

 

The first idea was to make candle (tealight) holders.  We made a batch of salt dough (dividing the ingredients by 3 so each child could make their own dough, and chose their own colour.  I don’t make anything easy for myself!!), and then the trio added colour and sparkles (glitter) to it as they required.  They had enough dough each to make 2 candle holders.  They shaped with their own fingers, but you could use cookie cutters.  Then we gently pushed a tealight into the middle to make sure there was a dent big enough.  We removed the tealight and then popped them in the oven at 120 degrees for around 3 hours to bake.  They all worked (phew) and they were all really pleased with the results.  The last photo shows them eating breakfast with their own candles all lit!  We had 2 hearts, a square, a fish, a star, and a teddy (just in case you needed help identifying!).

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The second craft had a bit of a tenuous link, but I wanted to do it as it looked such fun, and they had a really good time learning and discovering with this one.  Melted crayon art….crayons are made from wax…..that’s the link to candles!!  With this I allowed the children to chose some crayons from a pile of old broken ones, and placed them onto card.  They then used a hair dryer to melt them (supervised!).  Once the wax was running they could use the air direction to create a pattern.  They then enjoyed watching the wax dry, as it goes hard very fast.

Our last craft was using a technique that’s very simple and one I have done often with them.  It’simple and effective.  We made stain glass window candles.  We usually make mini beasts or flowers, so this made a nice change.  We drew a candle shape, then cut the inside out leaving a frame.  Behind that we stuck coloured tissue paper.  The mini men were more simple with theirs and the little lady a bit more intricate with her colours!

I hope you enjoy giving some of these ideas a go 🙂 If you like our ideas sign up to receive the daily blog posts into your email inbox!

Pond Crafts

Our nature curriculum theme for this week is ponds.  I have been on a mission today, and managed to locate the only pond on the island, so feeling quite pleased with myself that we now don’t have to go far to study this topic!  We kicked the topic off today with craft ideas.

The first idea was to make a pond on a paper plate.  My trio painted their plates blue, and then mini no.2 left it at that as he wanted some sea for his play people to surf on!!  The other 2 then used craft tissue paper to make lily pads and flowers on their ponds.  You could add other things, but they were quite happy fiddling around with tissue paper.  It can be used for small world play, which mini man no.1 did later, adding small plastic frogs and fish to, and using his imagination to play.

We then moved onto the famous pond resident the frog, and making these was quite a giggle.  The children painted a loo roll green, and stapled one end shut, leaving the other end open for the mouth.  They made some legs, and fixed comically huge googly eyes, and were very happy with their funny frogs!  A simple but very effective idea.

The third idea is something we have done a few times before in the past, but something that they all love doing, which is a pond collage with tissue paper.  They rip the tissue paper and shred it (the most fun part), and use it for the water and the plants.  They can then add other items made from tin foil….the little lady’s pond does seem to have an octopus living in it though!!

The last idea for the day was a pond viewer.  This is then something we are going to take out with us to our pond, to use to see under the water (if there is a gap in the ice). We cut the top and bottom off a plastic drinks bottle.  We then put 2 layers of clingfilm over the top of it and secured them with elastic bands.  The viewer will then be inserted into the pond, clingfilm end first and looked through from the other end.  Hopefully no one will end up with a wet nose 🙂

The following day we set off to our pond, and we did our final piece of craft work there.  It was nice to be back in the outdoors doing the craft, something I am looking forward to in the warmer months (more fresh air and a less messy house!).  Here the trio were to build little boats/rafts out of materials (natural or otherwise) that they found lying around the pond.  Being careful not to disturb any nature that was firmly rooted.  The boys were a bit reluctant at first as they were too busy trying to smash the pond ice (that never happened as was a couple of inches thick, but kept them very busy and out of mischief!).  However, once they saw our little lady trying to sail hers they suddenly changed their minds.  No one was disappointed either, as none of them sank.  This wasn’t due so much to the marvellous engineering skills that my three possess at such a young age, but more to do with the fact that there could only have been a cm of water on the surface of the pond with thick ice holding the boats up under that!!  Anyway, they had fun making and sailing them 🙂

 

Winter Tree Craft – Nature Weaving, Finger Painting, Journey Sticks, and Decorating Sticks.

The first of our activities, that we chose for this week’s nature art and craft, was nature weaving.  We had collected three Y shaped sticks and wound string around the V part; wind it round one branch, pull it across, and then wind it round the other, then pull it back across, and so on, until you have horizontal lines going up the V part.  We had then collected various items from the garden to weave through them.  Unfortunately at this time of year we are rather limited in the freezing cold with what we can collect, so evergreen supple branches had to do!  The children wove them over and under each horizontal thread, and then added the next one parallel to it.  At the end they tucked in brightly coloured craft feathers and tin foil to add a splash of colour!


The next idea we decided to do straight into the journals so we could keep it.  A winter tree would ideally be done on coloured paper, so it could be left bare, and use white paint thumbprints to create snow around and on it.  However, we lack white paint, and the paper in our books is white!  So, plan B was put into action, and brightly coloured leaves were added 🙂  The children painted their arms and hands and printed them into the books.  The arms became the trunks, and the fingers the branches.  I love it now when mini man no.2 does things like this (and enthusiastically as well) as there was a time when he wouldn’t even go near paint, as just the thought of getting it on him would cause a melt down….but persistence has paid off and he can now enjoy the use of it.  Next they did thumbprints or fingerprints for the leaves, and I love how they turned out.  

The third craft was an outdoor one.  A journey stick is a collection of items from a nature based walk that is then a memento of your trip 🙂  Be sure to remind the little people that they mustn’t disturb nature, so try and pick up things already on the ground.

You chose a suitable stick (chunky enough to be sturdy but not so big they can’t walk with it!), and wrap some string around it in continuous loops (these will be used to slot your items into).  We used purple sparkly wool….obviously everything must be sparkly!!  Our little lady is pictured slotting some undergrowth into her stick, whereas the mini men…..well, they had a sword fight!!  (They did end up getting a few pieces after the sword fighting and flag waving was out of the way!).  We decided as we did it, this would be an interesting thing to do every season, and then compare our photos.  Today, it was pine cones, berries, small pine needle branches (a few variations), mosses, and lichen.  So mainly greeny, brown.  Here is her finished result.

Our last craft was a very calming one (and boy we need these periods slotted into our days, as the trio are very full on, fast, and noisy!!).  We did stick decorating.  Each little person had a stick and some brightly coloured wool, and then they wound the wool round the stick to make blocks of colour.  This can be done as an outdoor activity, but the cold temperatures here make little fingers lose their dexterity, so today we did it indoors, after our nature walk and journey stick making.

Salt Painting.

We’ve been doing some salt paintings.  This is a really good activity for little people, and their sense of wonder is really piqued.  What you need is:  card, glue, salt, and very watered down paints.  We used pipettes, but you can use brushes.  You dribble/paint the glue onto the card, and then sprinkle salt all over the glue.  Tip the excess salt off the picture and recycle back into the pot for further pictures.  Once this preparation has been done, drop drips of paint onto the glue.  Then watch……!

The salt takes up the colour and it spreads along the salt/glue line.  We were trying raised pictures first (with a raised bit of glue and salt).  It took a little while for the mini men to be a little more refined with their paint dropping, but once they got the hang of it, they were fascinated about the colours travelling along the salt.  They loved watching the colours merge and seeing what would be the end result.  All three enjoyed the crystal like texture and look the paintings took on.

With a few of the paintings where there was too much fluid, the children decided to fold them in half to “blot” some of the paper.  The result was a beautiful symmetrical image, so a discussion regarding symmetry then followed.  They had great fun doing this in the afternoon and requested to do it again tomorrow (which due to my rather over enthusiastic paint dollops, which then led to a lot of watering down, it is possible and will save wasting the paint supply!).

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