Tag Archives: holiday

Valentine’s Day Monster

valentinemonster

Create a friendly “monster” to share on Valentine’s Day!

Goals:

  • To create a special gift to give on Valentine’s Day
  • To practice creativity

Before You Start:
Gather materials needed: cardboard craft rolls, assorted pipe cleaners, assorted craft twist ties, ceramic or foam heart shapes, wiggly eyes, pom poms, red and pink paint, paint brushes and tacky glue.

Let’s Get Started!
Step 1.
Paint a craft roll in a Valentine’s Day color. Alternatively, you could cover the roll in construction paper or foil paper.

Step 2.
Glue two lengths of either craft twist ties or pipe cleaners in the center of the craft roll. These will be the monster’s legs.

Step 3.
Glue a heart shape to the end of each leg. You can use ceramic or foam heart shapes, or simply cut your own hearts out of construction paper. Paint, if desired.

Step 4.
Glue two wiggly eyes and a pom pom nose to the outside front of the monster.

Step 5.
Twist the ends of two pipe cleaners together to create an extra-long pipe cleaner. Wrap the extra-long pipe cleaner through the back side of the monster and create a heart-shaped antenna.

Step 6.
Display your monster, or give to someone special!

Furthermore:
Stuff the monster with a small baggie of Valentine’s Day treats to give someone an extra-special delivery!

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Star Tree

startree

Submitted by: Tracy Emond

This is a great math activity to celebrate the Christmas/holiday season.

Goals:

  • To help children practice fractions and measurement
  • To create a beautiful centerpiece to display for the holiday season

Before You Start:
Gather all the necessary supplies, including: green and yellow construction paper, rulers, tape, glue, scissors, glitter, sequins, beads, pom-poms and other decorating items.

Let’s Get Started!
Step 1.
Have children measure 1″ increments lengthwise (and draw lines) on 2-3 sheets of green construction paper. Have them cut along the lines, creating 1″ wide strips.

Step 2.
Have children measure and cut the 1″ strips into the following seven lengths: 20″, 17-1/2″, 15″, 12-1/2″, 10″, 7-1/2″ and 5″. (For longer lengths, you may need to tape 2 strips together at the ends before measuring.)

Step 3.
Demonstrate how to fan-fold (like an accordion) the 20″ strip in 2″ wide sections. Have the children fan-fold the rest of the strips in varying increments. Fold 17-1/2″ strip into 1-3/4″ increments, 15″ into 1-1/2″ increments, 12-1/2″ strip into 1-1/4″ increments, 10″ strip folded into 1″ increments, 7-1/2″ strip folded into 3/4″ increments and 5″ strip folded into 1/2″ increments.

Step 4.
Let children decorate their strips on one side with the glitter, beads and other items and let dry.

Step 5.
Have them refold each strip and tape the ends together. This will create beautiful star shapes.

Step 6.
Starting with the largest star, stack them on top of one another, turning each one just slightly so they will balance on the one below.

Step 7.
Now you have a decorated Christmas tree to display in the classroom and/or use as a centerpiece for the holiday season!

Furthermore:
You can top off your tree by creating a star out of yellow construction paper or by using a large, yellow pom-pom. This is an easy project to take apart and reassemble over and over for years to come.

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Spider Hat

spiderhat

Submitted by: Kathy Worrell

Learn about spiders as children make a goofy hat!

Goals:

  • To learn about spiders
  • To learn that spiders have 8 legs

Before You Start:
Gather materials needed: black construction paper, wiggly eyes, glue, staples and a stapler or black tape.

Let’s Get Started!
Step 1.
Cut black construction paper into 10 equal, long strips for each child.

Step 2.
Take two strips and attach them together to create a circle that fits around the child’s head.

Step 3.
Attach 4 legs to each side of the circle. Crinkle the legs in an accordion fashion.

Step 4.
Add wiggly eyes to the front of the spider hat.

Furthermore:
Have the children wear their hats as they sing “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” and read books about spiders.

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Thankful Turkeys

thankful

These terrific turkeys incorporate a lesson about Thanksgiving and giving thanks!

Goals:

  • To learn about and practice expressing thankfulness
  • To encourage creativity and self expression

Before You Start:
Gather materials needed: Construction paper in various colors, wiggly eyes, feathers, crayons, markers, any collage items you wish to add, glue and scissors.

Let’s Get Started!
Step 1.
Help children trace their hand on a sheet of construction paper, making sure to have them spread their fingers wide.

Step 2.
Explain to the children that their thumbs will be the neck and head of their turkey and the other fingers will be its “feathers.” Have them color and decorate their turkeys any way they like.

Step 3.
Demonstrate to children how to cut feather-shaped pieces from the colored construction paper. Have them each cut several “feathers” using the different colors of construction paper.

Step 4.
Talk to the children about the history of Thanksgiving and how the holiday is celebrated today. Ask the children what they are thankful for and have them write the names of the people, animals and other things they are thankful for on each feather. Help them with writing, if necessary.

Step 5.
Have the children glue the “feathers” onto their turkeys. Add any additional collage materials if you wish to. Now everyone has their own unique Thankful Turkey to display around the classroom!

Furthermore:
Construct a large classroom turkey to display in front of the entire class. Have the children each create a few “feathers” with messages of thanks to add to the turkey. Now you have a collective classroom Thankful Turkey!

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Wrapping Paper Collage

wrapping

Submitted by: Alicia Colebeck

Use fun and varied wrapping papers to help little ones practice beginning scissor, cutting and pasting skills!

Goals:

  • To encourage decision making skills
  • To build beginning scissor skills and practice pasting/gluing
  • To encourage communication between children and conversation about likes/dislikes of shapes, characters and other aspects of the project

Before You Start:
Gather a variety of wrapping paper scraps (the teacher may request students to brings some in from home) in different patterns and sizes, construction paper, scissors, glue sticks, glue bottles or pens and other adhesives. Set out additional art materials, such as markers, crayons and collage items.

Let’s Get Started!
Step 1.
Have the children put their names on the back of their construction paper. Allow them to search for a wrapping paper scrap or cut-out in a pattern that they like, and begin to cut the shapes and symbols out for their papers.

Step 2.
Let children glue their cut pieces of wrapping paper to their construction paper in a collage any way they wish.

Step 3.
Encourage students to add words, drawings, or additional personal touches to their pages to extend their creativity.

Step 4.
Display around the room for everyone to see.

Furthermore:
Popular character wrapping papers are a favorite among children. Holiday-specific wrapping papers are fun for the holiday season. Graphic wrapping paper makes great looking artistic paper collages. This activity can definitely be left out for free-play/open-ended art with a group of children who are old enough to self-direct and use scissors by themselves.

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Holiday Wreaths

holidaywreaths

Submitted by: Laura Firpo

This is a fun, easy, hands-on (and messy) experience for preschoolers.

Goals:

  • To create a holiday gift children can take home and give to their loved ones
  • To teach children the fun of messy fun in their creations

Before You Start:
You will need shredded wheat cereal, green Liquid Watercolor™ mixed with white glue, ornament hooks, small lids such as from margarine tubs, small plastic bowls, wax paper, red-hot candies or red beads, clear varnish and red bows. You also may want to have handy wipes or wet paper towels on hand for quick clean up of sticky fingers!

Let’s Get Started!
Step 1.
Assist children in shredding the wheat cereal into a small bowl or on wax paper until it resembles sticks.

Step 2.
Help them add their prepared green glue to the shredded wheat until it is covered completely but not runny.

Step 3.
Ask the children to scoop approximately 1/3 cup onto margarine lid.

Step 4.
Using their fingers, instruct children to form an “O” shape.

Step 5.
Place ornament hook into top back of wreath.

Step 6.
Add red-hot candies or beads as berries.

Step 7.
Allow wreath to dry thoroughly 2-3 days on wax paper until rock hard.

Furthermore:
Teacher will need to varnish with clear gloss and add a red satin bow as desired for great take home gifts for children!

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Mother’s Day Frames

momframes

Submitted by: Tracy Emond

Create a memorable frame to celebrate Mother’s Day or for a loved one!

Goals:

  • To build creativity and fine motor skills
  • To create a lasting keepsake

Before You Start:
Gather materials needed: craft frames, tempera paint, paintbrushes, sponge/foam brushes, paint trays, glue, glitter, beads, feathers, pieces from old puzzles, pom-poms and other decorative items. Have children bring a current photo of themselves to class, or take a photo of each child to use for the activity.

Let’s Get Started!
Step 1.
Let each child choose the color(s) they would like to use to paint their frame. Allow them to paint the frames any way they like, and let dry overnight.

Step 2.
Provide children with the craft materials you have gathered to decorate their frames, and give each one a craft cup with glue and a foam brush to apply them. Encourage them to experiment using different materials as they work on the decorating their frames. Let dry overnight.

Step 3.
Insert each child’s photo into their individual frames and display in the classroom. Now students have a gift to take home for Mother’s Day or to have as a memorable keepsake!

Furthermore:
This is a great activity to incorporate a lesson about monochromatic colors (same color, different shades) or complementary colors (colors across the color wheel) when preparing to paint the frames. You could also have the children draw their portrait or write a poem to put into their frames as an alternative to using photos.

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