Thursday, May 5, 2011

Spring Book

Spring time is such a great time of year for art! There are so many possibilities...butterflies, bugs, flowers, baby animals, etc.

I found a spring book that focuses on 1:1 correspondence through 5 and leaves lots of room for creativity. It was originally from, which has wonderful ideas and themes. I use the site all the time.  I searched the Pre-K Pages site yesterday to link to it, but it appears that the file has been moved or removed and I was not able to find it. I have a .pdf version of the book in my files that I saved a few years ago, which I would be happy to email to anyone who wants to use it! We used materials that I founf in the craft drawers...white paper, construction paper, glue, black marker, flower & alphabet stickers, and some sequins. If you dont have a lot of crafty things around, you could use food items like Fruit Loops or anything colorful to decorate with. The possibilities are really endless.

First, we talked about Spring and different things we see outside...grasshoppers, ladybugs, spiders, grass, trees, etc. Then, we narrowed our choices down to her 5 favorite things. I cut the pages of the book apart and glued them to green construction paper to make them a little prettier and a lot more durable.

On the title page, Delaney worked on fine motor skills. Peeling stickers is a great, simple activity to strengthen little bitty finger muscles. It teaches kiddos how to use their pincer grasp (thumb and forefinger) and is FUN. She also had to find the letters of her name on a sheet of a zillion sparkly letters.


I chose the caterpillar for page one. I cut out circles and directed her to make an AB pattern with them.

She put it together all by herself, and drew the eyes. I drew the antennae, mouth and legs at her request.
Delaney cut out a square that had a picture of flip-flops and the number 2 for her second page. We are working on cutting out shapes, so she cut out a bunch of these squares for fun.

You can find the calendar numbers and a whole unit on flip-flops (which we might have to re-visit) at The Virtual Vine, another amazing teaching site.

We decided on butterflies for page 3. I cut out the butterfly wing and body shapes. Delaney glued them together 100% on her own, and added some sequins for flair. We will learn about symmetry some other time. :)

Page 4 was for flowers, or more specifically, tulips, as I was told by my almost three year old. Again, I cut out the petal, stem and leaf shapes. She put them together on her own.

I have to say, I was rather impressed that she knew she should glue the stem to the paper first and put the petals on top.

I firmly believe that no matter what the end product looks like, art should belong to the child. I try to give the least amount of direction possible, and even if I have to sit on my hands (which I do have to sometimes, haha) I don't help her put her art together. It's really about the production, not the end result, and if I make it my project instead of hers, she will miss the important part, not to mention the pride of knowing she made it all by herself.

We made thumbprint spiders on page 5. So cute! We used a black ink pad and her thumb for the bodies and a black marker for the legs. I drew the legs on the first spider for an example, then Delaney drew the legs on the remaining 4 while we counted to 8 together.

Dear Delaney, PLEASE use all of your self control & leave the ink pad alone while I take a picture...Thanks, Mom.

I punched a hole in the corner and put it together with a ring. I may have to use something else that is a little stronger, but we will see how this holds up.

It took about an hour and a half altogether. I was expecting it to be a multi-day project, but Delaney didn't want to stop until her book was complete. It turned out so well, even better than my relatively high expectations.

She was so proud of herself and excited to "read" it to her daddy when he came home from work. :)

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