I was very excited to learn about the MeMe tales readathon and we downloaded the app and the first books a couple of weeks ago. However, as school had not finished yet we are a couple of weeks behind.
Week 1 of the Readathon was all about Animals. We have tonnes of animal books at home but it was cool that both of the books for the readathon were traditional tales. I am been trying to introduce the kids to nursery rhymes and fairy tales so this fit in perfectly.
This is a familiar tale and instantly my girls started to sing the song. I went to iTunes and downloaded them the Raffi version. They listened to it over and over again and then decided that they were going to act it out for themselves. I sent them on a hunt to find as many toy ducks as they could. Michael’s favourite toy is his stuffed duckie but we managed to find a bunch more, especially when we got into the bath toys! We used two large pillows covered by my green table cloth for the hill (they called it the mountain), and we filmed in the backyard on a sunny day. It took a bit of rehearsing and distracting of one little brother but it ended up pretty cute!
I got inspired to create a special breakfast for the girls around the duck theme. I found a gluten free pancake mix in the pantry and decided pancakes and fruit would be perfect. The only problem was that most of my cool shaped cookie cutters are plastic. I found a tutorial at Time 2 Save that helped me use tinfoil to copy my pastic duck cookie cutters. This was supper easy and let me make duck shaped pancakes for breakfast. They asked why they didn’t have 5 ducks each but I am glad I didn’t make that many – they each ate only 2!
Other than our Panda puppets we made one craft to prepare for the day and two crafts at the festival.
To decorate we made Chinese lanterns. These were very easy for Kaitlyn and Eileen loved making them with a bit of help. We followed the simple directions we found on Kaboose.
First I measured out and marked the lines for the girls. I cut Eileen’s for her and Kaitlyn cut her own.
After our first one we learned that it was much easier to decorate the lanterns before assembling them. I got out our craft bins and anything they could use to decorate their lanterns: foamies, stickers, markers, and crayons but their favourite was the glitter glue.
To assemble them all you need is a stapler and some string or wool to hang them up.
At the festival the kids did two crafts. When all the kids had arrived we made dragon puppets. I printed off a template I found online an each child coloured their own. I put out crayons for them to use and let them do any colour they wanted. After they were coloured the adults helped cut them out. At this point we realized that this pattern is rather intricate and time consuming to cut out. After cut out they were assembled using red construction paper and wooden skewers.
Our final craft was Chinese kites. I looked online for patterns for making kites and settled on a diamond kite. We followed the pattern exactly and the kids had fun making them but I don’t think they will ever actually fly. It said to use strong paper so I purchased bristol board, but I think it is too heavy. Again I got out decorating supplies and let the kids decorate their kites however they wanted. If we had more time I would have introduced the concept of the zodiac or Chinese New Year and encouraged them to use their symbols on their kites. Kaitlyn is a bit dissapointed her kite won’t fly so we are going to experiment with other materials and see what we can come up with. We did manage to find wooden sticks of bamboo in the gardening section of Canadian Tire and they worked well. We have lots left over and will use it on our new kites.
Have you every had any luck making homemade kites that fly? What are your suggestions?
So last week when we were making our Easter Lilies Kaitlyn asked if we could make pop up puppets, actually she pretty much begged. The results = this Thursday’s craft. This one was another 2 day craft. It doesn’t take that long but there is a lot of paint and glue drying time needed. The most difficult thing with this craft was gathering all the supplies.
You will need:
Paper mache cones – these are difficult to find at this time of year but we found some online through Stockade. We found the 7″ ones worked best.
Wooden balls or styrofoam balls. We used wooden but styrofoam would probably have been easier.
Socks – bright coloured adult socks work best
Felt, ribbon, paint, stickers, scissors, and tacky glue
Before beginning an adult needs to cut off the end of the cones.
Cut just enough to fit the piece of dowel. Get everyone ready for painting. For us this means the drop sheet is on the table, paint shirts are on and hair is tied back. You can use simple tempra paints to paint the cones. We (meaning Mommy) prefers to use these when we can because they are very easy to clean up when (not if) messes occur. Paint your cones a solid colour. You may need two coats of paint. Mommy thought pink bunnies would be best for Easter but Kaitlyn declared that she doesn’t like pink. We couldn’t find orange socks so she settled for red socks with an orange base – an it was perfect for her.
While the kids are painting their cones a parent can glue the doweling onto the balls. We managed to glue the wooden doweling to the wooden ball with simple tacky glue but you may have to use wood glue. If you can find balls with holes to push the dowel in it may be easier. Syrofoam would probably have worked well also but I am not sure how well they would glue together.
We left our cones and our heads to dry overnight. In the morning it was assembly time. First the girls decorated their cones with a variety of Easter stickers. Next they pushed their heads into their socks. I helped them tie a ribbon around the neck to keep the sock in place. We then determined how far we wanted the bunny to pop out of his hole and we cut the remaining portion of the sock. Use the glue to glue the sock to the opening of the cone and let it thoroughly dry.
The final stage is the decoration stage. The girls added ears, eyes and noses on their bunnies.
Very cute pop-up bunnies. They will work great with the puppet theatre Grampa is making them for Easter.