This activity is amazing and so creative for kids all ages.
printable symbol examples (feel free to check my Pintrest board with more ideas and printables!)
drawing reference objects: printed animals/ toys/ figurines
rolls of brown packing paper
crayons/ chalk/ pastels ( Alex pastels worked best, FarberCastell turned to be too waxy and harder to apply) EARTH COLORS
paint plates or tray
We started with introduction to prehistoric art:
Altamira in Spain
we didn't have time to watch all videos from beginning to end but just browsed, discussed, and stopped on what kids were very interested to see
2. SYMBOLIC LANGUAGE
on our white board I threw a few symbols to introduce a different pictorial way to communicate - again we talked about why would ancient people see it this way. For example, after I showed them symbol for "3 days" ( you can find and print all materials from my Pintrest board link above) I asked how would " 3 nights" symbol look. Amazing was it to observe another world of thinking would enchant them!
Then I asked them to make their own symbols too. We talked about animals mostly found and they sketched some creatures. Main thing I suggested in deriving the symbol
AVOID DETAILS AND PICK ONLY ONE MAIN FEATURE THAT ABSOLUTELY MAKES THE PHENOMENON OR OBJECT DIFFERENT FROM ANYTHING AND DRAW IT!
Right there we set imagination to work!
3 ROCK TEXTURE paper preparation
Unroll the paper roll on the floor ask your children to crump the paper! YAY! Ask them to grab areas and squeeze more to add more detailing
Spread the paper on the floor use white crayons chalk pastels to add scratches and more texture. Kids can go wild with strokes and lines!
4. ANIMAL LIFE , SCENES start on animals big size. Encourage your kids to use all width of paper and help them with reference images toys to draw. Encourage them to tell a story, draw people hunting, animals, more.
1.Use dark brown black pastels with thick side drawing to produce widest outlines. Then add finer details, ornaments if desirable, fill in other earth colors: orange, dark green.
2. Paint application: PAINTING WITH A PALM AND FUNGERS! YAY! Just before painting I discovered we ran out of brown paint. OK we mix black with drops of orange and it produced amazing effect!
5. CAVE CONSTRUCTION
Staple the roll strips together lengthwise. ( we had 4 all together) Choose the place to tie one long rope as main middle holder. Then we used scotch tape and picked sides staple tape to the peak tying the other side to anything that can hold it around the room
you can see I rolled the scotch tape with the paper in 2 times and stapled it otherwise scotch tape will tear through the staple easily.
here you can see scotch tape is tied/stuck to sturdy object for our cave support. Spread the cave to even out the walls more less. Turn off all lights, don't forget to prepare the lanterns!
and onto amazing discoveries! Maybe draw a tiny little creature and ask kids to find it.
Here is one of the ways you can make your own red and blue ping pong balls for this great activity and the pattern guide cards we offer as PDF
- 2 dozens ping pong balls (we approximate to meet any of the activity needs that may arise later so that not to return to making more balls again: different patters, child free play and free creative play ideas, broken pieces, lost pieces, multiple students and etc) You can get 144 for $6.45 on Amazon, please see link below. Ping pong balls are amazing for its flexibility with games and kids involvment ( customize them with sight words, numbers, use catch word games and more, I personally got 144 and all are used you will see in the images below I am reusing those from counting activities with kids)
- plastic egg container, you can get one from container store or even use real one. If you are not convenient with using real egg containers ( I read some moms sanitize them in microwave), Easter is coming, stores will be filled with foam egg containers for chocolate marshmallow eggs!
- paint brush
- acrylic paint from craft store red and blue color, matte finish is fine, I only had glossy so you will see the shine, but it is up to you. Have fun!
- painters tape about 1" wide to cover half of the ball for precision and fast work, also helps as great drying holder, see below
- tray for easy transfer and drying
On the image below you can see I covered "clean" half ball with painters tape. I decided to put color on the number side, since I no longer need number ping pongs. Tear of a slice of painters tape and wrap around the ball. Better if your tape is wide about 1", it works amazing as a stand! This way after you apply the color you can simply put the colored ball on the tray without it tipping over and smudging.
Try to maintain the straight line along the half edge this will ensure accuracy with the border and will allow to quickly apply the paint.
Use thick brush and cover the ball, 12 red and 12 blue, work fast as the painters tape will HELP you a lot. Acrylic paint dries very fast, if you like add 1 or 2 extra coatings.
Here are the balls drying on the tray :-)
After drying remove the tape and voila! Place them in containers, plus our cards sized perfectly to fit in the container, store together, but NOT IN THE FRIDGE :)))
After playing acrylic paint would sometimes rub off a bit speckle here and there along the edge (you can notice a bit tiny white spot on the red ball on the left, since my kids were tossing them and free playing), but it holds up really good. Enjoy! And please add comments if you have some new ideas!
Set 1: DIY black and white graphic shapes pattern match
Use black and white paper and create random designs with opposite shapes, black on white white on black, graphisms and swirls. Create matching activity on poster board. Use one design of a pair to mount on sticky tape. We like to use Teachers tape as it can be reused and removed easily.(we will be adding printables and detailed description soon!)
Set 2 Color pattern matching
Here are images of pattern matching. This amazing activity practices not only dexterity, fine motor skills, eye coordination but logic and memory. Beautiful images build up creativity sources. (coming...)
set 3 Color swatch matching
We were covering red color theme, all about red color we could find and there is no better excercise then learning which shades of red are existing around. Best source - paint stores! We used swatches from Home Depot, picked more less distinct shades from pink to beige, colder to warmer shades. There is probably more than 1000 shades of red, but picking most prominent and offering it to children for matching activity will help them to build up the finest eye differentiation and deeper understanding of color as well as awareness of color qualities and essence.And if you can add color mixing to this activity it will be simply incredible learning value! see the image below.
1. get red color swatches from the paint store, choose various shades, try checking different paint brands stands as swatch shades really differ from brand to brand.
2. take poster board
3. use removable double sided tape to mount the swatches. Precut swatches: making 2 parts of each shades form matching. Mount one part and put the second in to the basket.
4. start activity by talking a little bit about colors, we had crayola red color spy book to see things that can be read and play a little bit. Then started card finding. Ask your child to take a card from the basket and hold it close to the swatch that looks closest to see if it is a match. Some shades are so fine, but my 3,5 y.o son did very good!Children also build up best attention strategies!
Here is a little hands on color mixing to really understand how those shades apper! Get some red color and ask your child dip a brush and add colors:
Pick a dark red card, ask him how would he make this color? Discuss the color, is it warm or cold, is it light or dark. Try mixing in dark cold color like blue or even black on the tip of the brush and see what happends.
Pick warm orange shade and again ask your child what he sees in this color, is it warmer or colder? add a little yellow or orange, is it getting warmer now? why?how does it make him or her feel?, discuss what happens, observe together. Maybe your child can create his amazing color! Let him or her go free and follow their own thinking and creativity!
You can introduce cold warm colors theory prior, here is the link to amazing source on color theories on pintrest Print it out for your reference.
Cut some shapes from assorted color felt
Creative play by placing them on the background
Layering them, stacking and assorted design
Sew Cool the sewing machine we are using works best on thin felt - provided by manufacturer, since we are using regular felt from the craft store, little shapes would not stitch properly but wider shapes worked fine.
Final result all produced by my daughter without my help. Great independent and creative activity!
Detailed description is coming soon!
She started experimenting on her own, amazing to see child's understanding of how clothing should wrap around - invaluable volume understanding and visualization experience.Cannot emphasize enough value of these activity. I let her use simple tape for attaching once she just started with machine, I guess it was easier for her this way
She was working on her own for quite some time!, here is great safety and child proof of Sew Cool that we started to love.
Here is the project we did together days after as I wanted to roughly give my daughter an idea of realistic clothing design process from measuring, paper patterns to marking on the fabrics to cutting and stitching. I didn't bother with real sleeve design or which side marking should go and seams, my goal was in short fast pace dynamic way (the best suitable for 3 year olds) break up this process in a simple most visual way possible.