Inspired by the lovely Keri Smith book we shared yesterday, we thought we'd make a playground for imagining a new world up, or for learning about the beautiful one we already live in. . .
. . . made with simple materials and lots of open space for. . .
. . . all of the beautiful things. . .
. . . we can imagine. . .
. . . and dream.
A Map of Everywhere
- Chalkboard paint
- Wooden board roughly 2' x 4' (optional, you could also paint this directly on your wall)
Based on a simple outline of a flattened globe, this quick chalkboard map allows kids the open space to play with geography. Whether they are dreaming up their own imaginary world or learning about continental shifts and our current geography, this board allows them to draw a picture of the world as they see it. By including a list space to the left and two notation bubbles to the right, there are even more places to play.
Starting on a board or a wall (I chose to use a board so it could be moved around inside or out, but a wall is a lovely place as well) draw three parallel lines roughly 12" apart and about 30" long.
Wrap a bit of string around the pencil and hold the other end on the center line you just drew (between the top and bottom line that move lengthwise along the board or wall). Make a few arcs above the surface, adjusting the length of the string by rolling the pencil in or out, until you have an arc that hits both of the outer lines right at their ends. This is not an exact science and your arcs don't need to be perfect. Your just looking for a rectangle with rounded ends line the one you see in the images above.
Once you have your main shape sketched, draw a vertical rectangle to the left and find a bowl to trace to make two circles to the right (see image above).
Paint inside the shapes with 2 to three coats of chalkboard paint, making sure to dry completely between each coat. If you are using a piece of wood that is a bit rough, sand the chalkboard sections after the first coat to make a smoother surface. Wipe away the dust with a damp cloth before painting the second coat.
When your chalkboard paint is dry, take a piece of white chalk and rub all the chalk surfaces completely. Wipe off the chalk when you are done with a soft cloth or a chalkboard eraser and your imagination board is ready for use!
*Last time in Crafts and Activities: Quick Molecule Bookmarks