Archive for the ‘ Group Activities ’ Category

Pirate Party

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Two weekends ago, we were at our friends’ house for a barbeque/party to celebrate their new baby on-the-way.   The party was indoors and outdoors with lots of little ones running about.  My dear friend Kelly offered face paints to the children and asked if they’d like to decorate their friends’ faces.  This was particularly fun for my youngest who loves face paint, but rarely gets to apply it to a friend’s face.  We collectively surrendered to the mess and decided that the evening would end with baths.  Within minutes a few stars and whiskers were added to faces, but then the party moved outside and the paints were left behind.

Once outside the children found our friend’s canoe, which was parked on the grass .  They hopped inside and were instantly paddling through uncharted waters,  encountering aquatic friends and foes, and setting off for far away adventures.  All of the adults looked away for a moment or two, and when we refocused our attention, the children were making telescopes, painting eye patches on their eyes and one was even wearing a pirate costume that he had brought from home. Random, but true!  Oh my!  It was just amazing!  They had turned an ordinary play session into a pirate adventure…..eye patches and all.

This was a reminder to me that a simple prop — in this case, the canoe– can transform a play space and spark the imagination.  And, that letting children lead the way is magical.  Oh, and it also makes me think that a DIY pirate party would be a fabulous summer birthday idea.

Cheers!

Emily

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Story Maps at the Eric Carle Museum

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013

Hello beautiful readers!

I’ve returned from a week long vacation at the shore to a full speed ahead week of teaching.  While my two little lovelies are at camp, I’ve been busy teaching a 3-day Storytelling Art Workshop at The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art.  My students are just so delightful and also full to the brim with creative ideas.

Yesterday, we made Story Puppets

And, this morning we made Story Maps, both from my book  Show Me a Story:

I’ll post finished photographs of their puppets at the end of the week!

Now, to brave the hot, hot weather we are having on the East Coast while 7 1/2 months pregnant –  A/C and lots of swimming have been the rule around here.

xo

Emily

 

 

 

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Beads: The Portable Craft

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Going away on vacation?  Don’t underestimate the brilliant, time occupying nature of an old fashioned bead set.  Not only will children make you gorgeous necklaces, but the multitudes of tiny colorful objects lead to sorting, arranging, and rearranging.

Grab an organizer from the craft store and fill it with beads of all  shapes, sizes, and colors.  If you are faced with a rainy afternoon or if your kiddos are in need of some quiet time, break out the kit and let them play.  We don’t go camping without one!

Don’t forget cord and twine for making necklaces!

I love wearing my child made jewelry!

-Emily

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Sidewalk Chalk Art. Just Add Water.

Monday, July 8th, 2013

Pick a warm summer afternoon,  break out the sidewalk chalk and offer your kids a bucket of water as well.  When the chalk mixes with water, the chalky pastels turn to rich, deep pigmented colors.  The color transformation is truly addictive.

If your children are interested, encourage them to use their feet and hands to mix and blend colors.

Make prints!

Or, hearts

And, when the art project winds down, let them run through the sprinkler to clean off.

Summer fun at its best!

Cheers,

Emily

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Summertime Party Garland

Friday, July 5th, 2013

Now that it is summer and we find ourselves celebrating outdoors, I am reminded of how much I love to make party garlands. When we break out the shade structure, I love to decorate it with a colorful, paper pendant garland.  It makes the yard look happy and inviting.

The best part about this project is that most of it is actually kid made. I enlist my two and ask them to paint bright colors onto brown paper bags.  Then, we cut out triangles and I slowly sew them using a straight stitch on my machine.  You can also punch holes and thread with yarn or string.

Hang it wherever the party is!

Happy July weekending, my friends.

-Emily

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