DIY Art Center Yarn Cans

I put together these cute yarn cans for my self-help art shelf. They are easy to make and keep the yarn contained and neat. I used plastic mason jars, but any plastic container with a lid will do. Simply fill the container with yarn, poke a hole in the lid, and pull a small amount of yarn through the hole. The children can then pull out the length of yarn they want, and cut with scissors (this may take some supervision with younger children). Finally, label the can with the corresponding color name of yarn.

MATERIALS USED:

– Yarn
– Plastic containers with lids
Our free color labels


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The Carrot Seed Carrot Craft

The children’s book The Carrot Seed is a simple classic that teaches perseverance, and the method of planting a seed and helping it grow. This delightful story, which was first published in 1945, has never been out of print. The Ruth Krauss’ straightforward text and Crockett Johnson’s clean illustrations work to create a timeless, victorious, and fulfilling story for readers of any generation.

A small boy plants a carrot seed. Unfortunately, everyone in the boy’s family is certain the seed will not grow.

“I’m afraid it won’t come up,” they each say.

However, the boy remains self-assured in the carrot seed’s potential and his own ability to care for it. Eventually, he is able to harvest a carrot that measures the size of his faith.

Now your young learners can have a huge carrot of their own that they can be proud of. Simply provide each child with a carrot (pre-K children should cut out their own), and a sheet of orange construction paper. Have the children tear the paper into small pieces. Then encourage them to glue the scraps onto the carrot until most of the white paper is covered. To complete the project, they will glue green strips of paper for the carrot top.

Materials Used:

– Green and orange construction paper
– Our triangle carrot template
– Glue
– Scissors


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Owl Babies Art Activities

My first year of teaching I discovered a wonderful book, Owl Babies, written by Martin Waddell, and beautifully illustrated by Patrick Benson.

Three baby owls awake one night to find their mother missing. “Where’s mommy?” they wonder. Exactly where mommy is makes a wonderful story. In subsequent years, I have read this book to all my classes for Mother’s Day, and have found that it never fails to capture the children’s imagination. After reading the book, the children love making their very own owls, painted with bubble wrap, to take home. I like to extend this curriculum later in the week. We often have a group discussion about owls, their habitats, and the fact that they are nocturnal animals. I then like to follow up with some feather painting.


OWLS – MATERIALS USED:

– Our owl template
– Construction paper
– Large googly eyes
– Feathers
– Paint
– Bubble wrap
– Glue

FEATHER PAINTING – MATERIALS USED:

– Stiff feathers
– Paint
– Construction paper


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Mother’s Day Gift Craft Cans

Many of the children in my classroom have mothers who are very crafty. They love to scrapbook and paint. So this year I decided to to have the children make decorative craft cans for Mother’s Day. In preparation, I covered the cans with foam in a variety of colors (I discovered the best way to be sure the foam adhered properly was to use a glue gun). When it was time to complete the project, I provided each child with a can, some tacky glue and a variety of materials to decorate with. I encouraged each child to pick what they thought their mother would like best. I then sat back and watched some beautiful cans emerge. The children are all very excited about presenting their gifts at our Mother’s Day Tea.


MATERIALS USED:

– Soup cans
– Craft foam sheets
– Scissors
– Glue gun
– Buttons
– Jewels
– Foam self adhesive stickers
– Stickers
– Tacky glue


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Mother’s Day Gift Bags

I always like the children to make their own wrapping for their Mother’s Day gifts. I have found that paper bags, when decorated, make the perfect gift wrap. The flowers on our bags are paper cupcake liners that have been pressed onto colorful blobs of paint. We spread the paint by smoothing it over with our hands. Brass fasteners were used to attach the flowers (some children will need help with this step). We then pasted some stems and leaves on, and added bright pom poms, in the center, to complete our flowers. As a final step, we punched holes in the bags and tied them with a colorful yarn. The completed bag is the perfect compliment to any Mother’s Day Gift.


MATERIALS USED:

– White paper bags
– White cupcake liners
– A variety of paints
– Brass fasteners (brads)
– Pom poms
– Our leaf and stem template
– Construction paper
– Yarn
– Hole punch
– Glue
– Scissors


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Rainmaker Craft

This week we will be participating in NAEYC’s Week of the Young Child™, which celebrates early learning and young children, along with their teachers and families. So let’s get started – Happy Music Monday!

Over the course of the last couple of weeks, the children have been working on their rainmakers and on their moves in preparation for our big rain dance this afternoon. We will be preforming to the tune of Rainforest Rock & Roll!

It’s going to be so much fun, and the kids are beyond excited.

Below are the materials that I presented to my class, but anything will work to decorate the rainmakers; markers, paint, stickers, felt, construction paper, glitter, and so on. You just want to make sure that what you offer is developmentally appropriate for your group of little learners. Note: I did have to assist my kids with tying the twine during this project, which turned out to be amazing teachable moments.

MATERIALS USED:

– Paper towel rolls
– Rice
– Twine
– Raffia
– Burlap
– Animal print paper
– Faux fur
– Jewels
– Feathers
– Tacky glue


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Paper Plate Sheep Craft

Looking for another art idea for your farm unit? How about this adorable paper plate sheep craft? This is a straightforward activity that is sure to engage young learners. Encourage children to cut their own plates in half.


MATERIALS USED:

– Paper plate (cut in half)
– Cotton balls
– Googly eyes
– Our sheep head template
– Glue
– Scissors


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Charlie Rooster Shape Craft

This Charlie Rooster shape craft is a fabulous extension to the story Friends written and illustrated by Helme Heine. Together, these activities teach pro-social behavior, shape knowledge, and color recognition.

As children grow, they become increasingly interested in establishing friendships. Friends provide stimulation, assistance, camaraderie, and affection.

Charlie Rooster, Johnny Mouse, and Percy the pig are the best of friends. They do everything together. They ride their bike together, play games together, and even do their chores together. Because that’s what best friends do. This charming book glorifies friendship; proving that friends can make even the most simple, everyday delights seem extraordinary. In cheerful watercolors, Helme Heine depicts the tremendous spirit of these adorable animals, who are filled with the enthusiasm and pleasure of companionship.

MATERIALS USED:

– Construction paper
– Craft foam
– Our free circles template
– Scissors
– Glue
– Dot markers
– Googly eyes
– Heart cutouts/Fiskars heart squeeze punch
– Feathers
– Crayons


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