Saturday, March 30, 2013

10 Ways to Play This Weekend: Week 33

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Painted Suncatchers

We're trying to bring some fun spring colors into our house, so to decorate our windows, we made these fun and pretty painted suncatchers. We've made suncatchers before using clear Contact paper, like these simple tissue paper ones or this flower garden. But, this time, instead of tissue paper, we decided to paint our Contact paper.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Shake Art Easter Eggs

We've tried shake art, or painting with marbles, once before. It was so much fun that I knew we ought to do it again. Easter seemed like the perfect time. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Exploring New York City: Resource Post

Map image courtesy of DaveCito, Creative Commons License

Do you want to do your own virtual exploration of New York City? I've compiled a list of books, activities, blog posts, videos, and websites that helped us with our project. Bear with me as this list is quite extensive, but I'm providing it in the hopes to help you create your own virtual journey through New York City.

This post contains Amazon Affiliate links. Please see my disclosure for more details.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Spring Button Flowers

Happy first day of spring! I've got a few projects coming your way to celebrate spring starting with these Spring Button Flower note cards. We're ready for spring at the Create Family household, unfortunately our yard is still covered with many inches of snow and it's bitterly cold outside. Longest. Winter. Ever. Sigh...

Anyway, let's craft, shall we! It may not look like spring outside, but at least we can make it look that way inside. 

Supplies Needed:
Fabric scraps
Card stock cut to your desired note card size
Green construction paper
Scissors (sharp enough to cut fabric)

I raided my fabric stash for some brightly colored scraps of fabric. This was one time that my pack rat tendencies actually came in handy. I found a fun array of scraps. We used the scraps as the base of our flowers. We cut circles, triangles, or whatever shape the little hands could handle. You'll want to supervise this part because we were unable to use our child safety scissors for cutting fabric, you'll need a sharper pair. After cutting our shapes, we chose a button for the center. We laid out all of our flowers before gluing them down, so we could make sure it looked the way we wanted it too.

We used the green construction paper for our grass, sometimes tearing and sometimes cutting. We either drew our stems and leaves with a green marker or used construction paper strips. Both look great. After we had everything the way we wanted it, we glued each piece down. You can use regular school glue for this part.

Despite all the snow outside, we spent a very pleasant afternoon making spring flowers. They all turned out wonderful and I think we may send these out for Easter cards.

Are you experiencing nice spring weather yet or are you still stuck in winter?

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Monday, March 18, 2013

Around the World in 12 Dishes: Exploring Irish Folklore

Welcome to Around the World in 12 Dishes, the 2013-2014 edition! We enjoyed our journey so much last year, that we decided to do it again with a different set of countries. We made a few changes that will hopefully make your experience more enjoyable. We'll be posting throughout the month now, so now you'll find my posts the third Monday of every month. Plus, the girls and I won't be cooking. Instead we'll be focusing on crafts, activities, and other cultural activities. If you would like to join in, or just find other ways to these countries on your own, you can join Around the World in 12 Dishes on Facebook and Pinterest. Are you ready to get started? Let's go to Ireland!

With St. Patrick's Day in March, Ireland seemed like the perfect spot to start our journey. When researching our project, I found a wide selection of Irish folktales and soon settled on Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato by Tomie DePaola. We love Tomie DePaola books and knew he would tell us a fun tale. After enjoying the story of Jamie O'Rourke, the laziest man in all of Ireland, we decided not to be lazy and to start crafting. Since the book centered around a potato, we decided to try out potato stamping.

Supplies Needed
Sharp knife (adult use only!)
Green paint
Paint brushes (sponge brushes work best)

The grown-up in charge will have to prep this project. To make the potato stamps, cut a potato in half. I used a toothpick to "draw" my shamrocks before cutting. Then using the knife I cut around the shamrock to make my stamp. We made two different styles of stamps. On one, I cut out the shamrock and on the other, I cut a thick outline of the shamrock.

We used the paintbrush to paint some green paint onto our stamp. I used a couple of different shades of green since we were using shamrocks. The girls painted and stamped and painted and stamped some more. We weren't so worried about the end product. This project was all about the process.

The girls enjoyed stamping and seeing the texture from the potatoes. After they covered their paper, they got creative. Soon our potatoes were completely painted green!

Would you like to join in this month? You can download a printable passport page here and a placemat here. Also, check out the other participating blogs for plenty of wonderful ideas:

Adventures In Mommydom, Creative Family Fun, Domestic Goddesque, Enchanted Homeschooling Mom, Glittering Muffins, Here Come The Girls, Juggling with Kids, Kid World Citizen, Kitchen Counter Chronicles, Little Artists, Mermaids' Makings, Montessori Tidbits, Mummymummymum and The Educators' Spin On It

Please link up your Irish activity in the linky below. We'd love to see it!

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*Disclosure: All Amazon links are Associate links. Thank you for your support.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Becoming Warhol ~ Kids Art Activity

New York City is full of museums, so it was hard to pick one for us to talk about during our exploration of New York City. But, I ultimately chose The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA). It allowed us to see all sorts of fun examples of art and well as introduced one particular artist, Andy Warhol. After viewing examples of his artwork, both online and in the book, Usborne The Children's Book of Art, we were ready to make our own Warhol-inspired artwork.

We used Marilyn Monroe, by Warhol, as our inspiration. We talked about how the picture looked like a real person, but the colors were different. Warhol used bright colors such as pink and yellow in his picture. We talked about how art could be anything. It could be realistic or not. Or in the case of Marilyn Monroe, it could be a combination of both. 

Then, it was time for the girls to get to work. I prepped this project by printing out a full letter-sized picture of each girl in black and white. I found a picture of just their faces since it was most like our inspiration piece. I then got out our markers and told the girls to have fun. They were a bit hesitant and their first instinct was to try and color their pictures as realistic as possible. So, we looked at our inspiration again. Aha, inspiration struck!

The girls made bright colored hair, hot pink lips, electric blue eyes, orange noses, cool bows, and lots of freckles. Yes, we became Warhol!

To round out our learning, we read Uncle Andy's by James Warhola. Warhola is Andy Warhol's nephew and he wrote and illustrated this delightful picture book describing his childhood visits with his eccentric uncle. It was a fun and very kid-appropriate introduction to Warhol.

Have you studied any of the great artists with your kids? Which ones have you learned about?

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Linking up to It's Playtime and Kids Get Arty.

*Disclosure: All Amazon links are associate links. Thank you for supporting Creative Family Fun.

Did you enjoy this post? Please click the image below to purchase Project Around the World: New York City for only $.99. You'll find my collection of New York City posts all in one printable, portable collection.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Subway Acrostic Poetry

As part of our exploration of New York City, we learned a little bit about the subway. We used the books, A Subway for New York by David Weitzman and Down in the Subway by Melanie Hope Greenberg, as inspiration. A Subway for New York told the history of the subway system. It was a little advanced for the girls and I knew they wouldn't have the patience for it, so I paraphrased and we looked at the pictures. Down in the Subway was a fun story about the different types of people you can meet while riding the subway. After reading, we used our inspiration for a fun writing project.

An acrostic poem is one in which the first letter in each line spells out a word or phrase. It's a fun type poetry for kids that are just beginning to write. Our poem was going to be about the subway, so I wrote the word lengthwise down our paper. Lizzie (age 5) helped me think of words that began with each letter. We started with "S" and came up with stations, stairs, subway, signs, etc. We looked through the books for inspiration. Once we had a few words, she chose the one she liked best, stairs. We went on down the line. Some letters were easier than others. When we couldn't come up with a single word that worked, we used a phrase instead. Now that she's over halfway through Kindergarten, the concept of an acrostic poem was easy for Lizzie to grasp and she enjoyed helping me think of words. Once we were done, we had a poem we were quite proud of.

All over
You are riding a train.

We had so much fun with this project that I know we're going to write many more acrostic poems in the future!

Have you ever written an acrostic poem with your children? Tell me about your experience.

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