Our main themes this month are
SPIDERS and PUMPKINS!
Welcome to our Arts-Crafts & Activities section of the Blog.
I simply LOVE fall and hope you will enjoy these activities with your children as much as I enjoyed doing them with mine. I designed some "Quick Crafts" along with a few that take a bit more time. All of them are easy and fun tho'; and If you're looking for more autumn art projects to fine tune report card skills and standards then check out my Pumpkin Art and Activity Book. My Fall Fun as well as my Leaf Unit have some great fall activities in them as well.
I’m big on recycling so I have at least one project for my students each month using recycled materials. This one involves newspapers. Some of my little ones were actually unfamiliar with them! They are a great way to review concepts of print, talk about news, and advertising, plus have them hunt for letters, and shapes, then spell their name in the smile of a Jack-O-Lantern. The orange colored pumpkin on newsprint makes for a very interesting background. Click on the link to print directions and see a bigger picture. Newsprint Pumpkin.
Pumpkin Patch Mobile
, p I try to incorporate science into my art activities as well, so this Pumpkin Patch Mobile made from a coat hanger is perfect. It also helps reinforce sequencing and cutting skills. Click on the link above for complete directions and patterns.
Dryer Hose Pumpkin
While visiting Hobby Lobby I ran into a wonderful gal who asked my opinion about what color to paint her dryer hose pumpkin. She was making them as center pieces for her church and said the idea was almost 2 decades old! I asked her if I could put it on my website and she said “Yes!” Then I went to the hardware store and bought enough dryer hose to make the pumpkins with my Y5’s! Their mommies loved their pumpkins! You can use a fall-colored leaf or, to make it more of a keepsake, do what I did, and paint your students' hand print a lighter shade of green than the construction paper you press it on. Trim around the edges, add a green pipe cleaner that they wrap around a pencil and you have the finishing touch. I had the dryer hose sections all stapled before hand. Decide how big you want to make your pumpkins. I kept mine small (18 inches) and used a stapler to fasten the ends together. I stuck a toilet paper tube in the center. Because the hole in the center of the pumpkin is smaller than the tube, there was no need to fasten it. The children hung on to the tube to paint the bottom of the pumpkin, when the time came. You can have them paint the t.p. tube stems green, but I had my students simply leave them brown. They looked more realistic and was one less painting step. Make sure you buy white plastic dryer hose. Most places only sell silver because it is flame retardant. True Value Hardware still sells white and so does Menards. Menards has a 20 foot bag for $7.99; this will make 11 pumpkins. True Value sells it by the foot as well as a 9 foot bag. This project will cost you a little over a dollar to make for each pumpkin, so you might want to collect some money for it, or do it only if you have a small class. Make sure you give the children big foam brushes so they brush on a lot of paint. Remind them that they need to get into the cracks so that no white shows. I covered my tables with brown butcher paper and had them wear paint shirts. As you can see buy the photo they really look like those miniature pumpkin gourds! When other teachers saw them they couldn't believe how realistic they looked and that my 4-year-old's had made them! Dryer Hose Pumpkin
Another recycling project that I do, is with water bottles. They make an adorable web-walking dancing spider sure to scare Miss Muffet away! When you press the "head" down she "bounces" up and down! Click on the link for directions.
To go along with your Web Walking Water Bottle Spider why not learn a bit of trivia about spiders and make this cool Spider Fact Flip Book out of a black paper plate. Click on the link for directions and pattern pages.
Paper Plate Puppet Theater
October’s just not complete if you’re not singing a few pumpkin songs. I especially like “Five Little Pumpkins Sitting On A Gate” but with all the hoopla over Halloween and witches etc. I thought it best to change a few verses a bit. Here’s a Paper Plate Puppet Theater I designed that you can make for yourself, or it’s easy enough for all of your students to make and take home. Click on the link above to print out directions and pattern pieces.
Cup Cake Cuties
I was in Michael's Craft store and saw the Wilton paper cupcake holders. They come in a variety of seasonal prints and are too cute! As you know my "mantra" is: "What can I do with this?" So I dreamed up "Cup Cake Cuties" Since we got our school pix back, I simply enlarged them on the copy machine and cut an oval head for each child. Cut some orange strips on a paper cutter and let your students have some much-needed fine-motor skill practice by folding the strips into an accordion fold for the legs and arms and then have them glue to the cup cake holder. You too can have adorable "little pumpkin people" dangling from your ceiling! Mommies are sure to enjoy these cupcake cutie keepsakes! Have them make the flower card also made out of cupcake holders for Sweetest Day, or save for a Mother's Day or spring flower activity. Click on the link to see that pix. FLOWER
Whatever arts and crafts or activities you're doing with your little "punkins" I hope it will be brimming with lots of fall fun. As always if you have an original idea you'd like to share with us, we'd enjoy hearing from you!
Here's a pix of the Pirate Booty Bag that I made for my grandson to take trick or treating. Michael's Crafts sells the bags for only $1.99. I used puffy paint for the lettering and white glow-in-the dark paint for the pirate skull and cross bones. He loved it!
As a "sneak peak" into next month's topic: Scarecrows click here to see my favorite scarecrow project I do with my students. I call it "Personal Scarecrows". Enlarge a student's photo on the copier machine. At this size it will become pixelated and give their face a true scarecrow look! We're studying shapes so I have examples of rectangles, squares, and triangles throughout the project. You can print my scarecrow head and design your own shape project or check out my Scarecrow Art & Activity Book for all kinds of patterns, poems and fun! There will be more freebies in November!
Until then "Keep On Craftin'" and making those wonderful memories that make you smile and your little ones smile!