With Valentine's Day just around the corner. . .
. . . and so much white outside after the big snowstorm. . . . . .
. . . I just had to play. . .
. . . with a little color. . .
. . . and make something sweet. . .
. . . for all my little sweethearts.
Silk Heart Valentines
With the Kids:
Last week we talked about the beauty and structure of bare trees. This week, we're appreciating the other lovely thing you can see when there are no leaves: birds!
And what better way to appreciate something than to learn more about it. . .
. . . while playing a fun game that. . .
. . . will help you identify. . .
. . . all of your favorite. . .
. . . feathered friends. Won't you come and play too?
DIY Bird Land Board Game
Here at Imagine Childhood, we love it when toys and activities have multiple uses and that goes for our blog posts too! A while back we made a fun math game with a cloth game board, and this week as we were seeing lot of sweet little birdies in the winter trees, we just had to make it into an ornithology game as well. One board two games, and I think, many more to come!
If you haven't made our Math Game board, pop over to that post for the directions. When you have your board and game pieces, cut sheets of card stock into 3"x2" pieces approximately. About the size of a business card. You can make larger cards if you'd like more space for drawing and writing. If you don't want to cut anything at all, you could even go for extra large cards and use 3" x 5" index cards.
Once you have your cards ready, grab your favorite birding book, or check out this wonderful resource for bird silhouettes and start drawing them out on the cards. On separate cards write facts about the various birds with the name of the bird on the reverse side. Make sure to put the name of the bird on the reverse side of the silhouette cards too.
When your card stack is complete - make as many as you like and keep adding new ones each time you play to allow the game to evolve with your little learners - play the game together.
How to Play
With the Kids:
There is no denying the beauty of tree foliage. From the dappled light of green canopies to the color riot in autumn, tree leaves are ever so lovely. So, it can be understandable that we miss those luscious days of verdant bounty when confronted with the starkness and chill of winter weather. If you take a moment to look closely though, winter trees are pretty magical too. It's the time of year when we get to appreciate the beauty and intricacy of their structure.
Each and every branch has. . .
. . . a purpose. . .
. . . and a story to tell. . .
. . . if we all take a moment to be quiet, look up. . .
. . . and take it all in.
Wax Resist Winter Tree Postcards
Not only is this project simple, it has the added element of a little "magic" when the paint reveals the hidden trees.
To make the postcards, simply draw bare tree shapes on your postcard blanks with a clear wax crayon. Don't worry if you can't see exactly what you are doing, that's part of the fun. If you really need to take a peek though, you can move the paper around a bit in the sun and the drawing with shine a bit in the light.
Once you have a tree shape on the paper, paint over the sheet with watercolor. The wax will resist the water in the paint and leave that part white. I liked the texture and look of a single color in horizontal strokes, but your little artists can explore every option of color they can dream up.
After the postcards have dried, send them off to friends to share stories of your winter adventures. For more activities that go with this project, check out the "With the Kids" section below.
With the Kids:
A new year means new maps. . .
. . . and new territories to explore. . .
. . . it means hearty warm breakfasts in preparation for. . .
. . . fun winter adventures. . .
. . . and quiet afternoon crafts. . .
. . . accompanied by a snowball or two, just for laughs.
Here's wishing you and yours a wonderful and adventure-filled start to the year!