Saturday, August 29, 2009

Painting and Stamping This Week

Painting (which is an outside activity given that D doesn't "get" that everything must stay in the kitchen & away from the carpet!), has tapered off since the temps have been up around 90 for a few weeks now.

Once we revisit painting, I'm hoping to:

*get out the thicker fingerpaints & let the kids make big messes on baking sheets :)
*use thicker paint and let the kids use forks & other objects (play doh "cookie" cutters) to play with texture & shapes
*hopefully have her trace the cookie cutter shapes with a paintbrush, q tip, or even her finger to get a better sense of the fine motor motions of lines & curves
*Best of all, see how D (15 months) does alongside E at the picnic table with a few colors of paint & brushes (will he stick to the paper, or will my basil & the BBQ see some action)
Until then (indoors), I"ll get out the
*basic paint with water
*scissors (coupons, scissor practice, greeting cards)
*let E play with our new & huge stamp pads (both thumbprint art & her new princess stamps). (oops - they're much bigger than I expected) and (great storytelling potential later, but for now, just playtime :)
*somewhere we have a set of melissa & doug animal stampers as well
* I'd also like to see how foamy our new stamp pads are & if they have a fabric "top", then I'll get out the letter stamps and my old stamps from my childhood (nice big tub of those), otherwise, we might still need.
*the new stamp pads are big enough for handprint art (with minimal prep & possibly baby wipe clean up??) Might be time to break out a new pack of construction paper!
*the little alpabet stamps worked great last week (until I turned my back to wash a few dishes & she turned her fingers blue by really getting into her project) - those were especially fun for her and she played with letter identification & orientation, different font recognition & also stamping on a line (her choice) which further developed hand/eye coordination as well as "writing on a line" (sort of :)
*it's also time to find the "magic marker pens" that have mysteriously disappeared. We also have some sets of the tiny letter stamps (pictured), which have worked well as a random activity
OK - guess the dining table will still be our staging ground! :) Maybe I can just use the extra ikea storage tubs to figure out our activities one day at a time.

What we're doing right now (August)

We've been crafting with embroidery floss like this
we've used a wooden hoop, plastic needle, stretchy floss & I've had to use a skewer to pre-punch into the felt sheets I had on hand. Wasn't able to come across burlap easily (don't buy rice by the bag, but might get some sacks soon - I hope :)

Last week we scrunched tissue paper squares onto a rainbow (using glue, large sheets of paper & gift tissue). That was a big hit, but would've worked better inside (wind + tissue = bad), and we'll continue to work on our rainbow art this week.

My fingertip crayons came in the mail & the kids had a great time this morning creating masterpieces on the easel using them today.

I re-orged our visible toy shelf (the open shelving that's out of reach) & put the pom pom basket (complete with ikea cups/bowls, ice cream scoop & toilet paper tubes), beanbags, and puzzles & small piece items that are safe for both kids (lacing, basic board games, leapfrog letters..). Seems that many of these could/should be at their access, but there are too many toys "out" right now. Better to keep some things in sight/in mind, but out of reach till other toy sets get picked up :)

Our last 'big hit' of the week (month?) has been the bug carnival that Ellie & Drew have both enjoyed. Pathetic attempt at a habitat, but for general play & observation, it's appealing to both of them. Will hopefully make some faux butterfly nectar this week & put it in the 'pond' to attract some of those great monarchs we've seen outside!

Organizing what's to come

I have 2 kids, E's 3 1/2 & attending preschool and D's 15 months. Both love to do activities at home (and out & about) & I'm hoping to use this space to document the hundreds of ideas I come across each week and organize it a bit so that when I start to wonder "what's next", then we remember what we've planned. Hopefully we'll put it all here, rather than stage it all on the dining table (what's been happening!)