Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Year's Eve Crafts

I have some quick crafts you can make with the kids to get ready for the New Year! The first one is the big ball drop. I got this idea from Free Kids Crafts, but instead of using white paint, we used glue. I started by making a line down black paper and the kids wrote the numbers 1-5 down the side, starting with 5 at the top. Then they wrote 2015 at the bottom. They were excited to use my metallic Sharpie!
Then it was time to make the ball. I cut a circle out of bubble wrap and squirted some white glue on it. The kids spread the glue around with a big paint brush.
I made sure they painted all the way to the edge so it would look like a circle when they made their print. Then I flipped it over onto the line on the black paper, towards the bottom, and the kids pressed it down gently. Make sure not to let it slide all around! Then I peeled the bubble wrap off, put the black paper in a box, and the kids sprinkled silver glitter on it.
After shaking off the extra glitter, we had a sparkly New Year's Eve ball!

None of my kids knew what the ball was, but that's probably a good thing, right? We also made party hats! I again got this idea from Free Kids Crafts. I cut out some headbands from large construction paper. I set out sparkly pipe cleaners and whimsical stars cut from construction paper. The kids decorated one side of the headband and then flipped it over to add the pipe cleaners. They used tape to attach everything so I didn't have to help much at all.

They loved them! We walked around the whole center saying Happy New Year to the other classes and showing off our party hats!
Have a happy and safe New Year's!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Rudolph Nylon Craft

When I was at my sister's house this past weekend to celebrate our family's Christmas, I noticed this really cute craft hanging on a door knob.
Her son had made it at school. I took a closer look and realized it was nylons stretched over a wire hanger! How cool is that? I knew I would not have enough time to collect old nylons and hangers for my whole class, so I made one with my daughter instead. But next year I'm totally going to do this with my class! I started with a pair of old nylons (or "old lady socks" as my nephew called them) and a wire hanger.
I stretched the hanger by pulling the middle part down. Then I pulled on the nylons. I ended up using both legs to make it a little darker. Then I tied them at the top.
My daughter dipped a big red pom pom in glue and put it on the tip of the hanger, where the nose would be. Then she added eyes cut from paper. I showed her where to put them.
For the antlers, I wanted to use handprints. But hers were a little too small!
So I traced my husband's hands and attached those to the top by the hook. They covered up the knot. I used masking tape on the back to hold them in place. Then I found some fun craft paper and made holly and berries from it. I helped Elise stick them on.

And here's how it looks!

I love how it already has a hanger. I hung it from a stocking holder for the pictures, but now it's on the door knob of our closet.
So cute!

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Framed Ornaments Craft

When it came time to think of a holiday gift the kids could make for their parents, I remembered what they made last year.
I loved them! (You can read about them here.) I wanted to do something similar, but a little different. And I was looking around the room and saw our stained glass ornaments hanging from yarn in the windows.
Perfect! So this year we made ornaments.
Actually, I let the kids decide if they wanted to make trees or ornaments. This project takes several steps. I put the frames together for them ahead of time. I used jumbo craft sticks and glue dots. The kids decorated them with sequins. Then I cut squares from white card stock to fit the frame. The kids used blue watercolor to paint the square.
They also painted a strip of card stock with watered-down glue, added tissue paper squares, painted over them with the glue again and added a touch of glitter.
When they were dry, I flipped them over and drew on two triangles or three circles, depending on what the child wanted to make. Those who chose trees cut the triangles out themselves. I cut out the circles for those who wanted ornaments because the kids have a hard time cutting circles. For the ones that were making trees, I added some snow to the bottom of the blue watercolored square with extra white card stock. I just trimmed it to fit.
Then I glued on tiny trunks made from brown construction paper and the kids glued the trees to the square.
For the ornament craft, I left the whole background blue and the kids glued the circles on. They glued one on each side and one in the middle and put them at different heights. I set the frame on top of the square so they wouldn't put the circles too far over on the sides, but it wasn't glued on yet.
I used a clear ruler so I could see the exact middle of each circle and drew a line from the top of the circle up to the top of the frame. After having each child practice making a bow (an oval on one side of the line and an oval on the other side of the line), they made their bows on their craft. I glued the square to the frame using glue dots.

This year I added magnets on the back instead of ribbon for hanging. Still love how they turned out and I'm sure the parents will as well!
And speaking of gifts, my daughter has two college students who help out in her room at day care. I didn't want to forget about them this holiday season, but I also don't have a lot of money to spend. I love all the "mistletoe" gifts I've been seeing online so I decided to do that for them. I found a nail file, some foot scrub, nail polish and fuzzy slipper socks. I put them together in a little bucket that I found at Walgreens and added a tag from The Classy It Girl.
They turned out pretty cute!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Gingerbread Sweeties {Class Display}

Wow, it's been a long time since I've posted. I've been crazy busy lately. I just stopped in to share my holiday class display. The kids decorated a gingerbread boy or girl with glitter glue and buttons.
They didn't make a head because I would be adding their own face!

Then they partnered off and colored a gingerbread house together.

I displayed everything in the hall with the title, The Holidays Are Sweeter With Friends!
I put their gingerbread person next to the house they colored.

Short and sweet! I'll be back soon to share the gifts the kids made for their parents!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Turkey Craft

So a couple months ago I was looking at the tissue box in my bathroom and I really liked the designs. It reminded me of feathers and the blue made me think it would make a good peacock craft.
However, with Thanksgiving coming up, I decided a turkey craft would be a better idea. I also had tissue boxes in orange, brown and green, so I cut those up for the craft. Because I only started saving the boxes for a couple months, I knew I wouldn't have enough for my class to make these. So my daughter and I had another mommy-daughter craft night! We made the whole thing out of the boxes (except for wiggle eyes), but you could also use construction paper.
First we painted the inside bottom of the tissue box with brown paint. We used acrylic because that was the only brown paint I had.
I did help her spread it around because it was really thick. I almost left the box natural, but it was a little too gray for my liking. We also painted parts of the box red and orange, using tempera paint.
While that was drying, I cut out the middle circle of a couple paper plates and put a bunch of glue on them. Then we stuck on the feathers that I had cut out from the boxes.
With older children, you could probably let them glue the feathers directly onto the back of the turkey body, but I thought this way would be easier for my 20-month-old daughter. I let her put the feathers on any which way. She loved this part and kept adding more glue.

When she was done, we took a little break to let everything dry. The painted parts dried pretty quickly, so I traced her shoe on the brown one and cut out beaks from the orange one. From the red piece, I decided to cut out snoods (the red thing that hangs off the beak) instead of wattles (the red part that hangs below the beak), but you could do either or both. I also got out some wiggle eyes I received free from
I brought my daughter back to the craft table and put some glue on the back of her turkey body and she stuck it to the feathers. Then I put glue on the back of the beak and the snood and I was SHOCKED when she actually stuck the snood on top of the beak! She's a genius, I thought! Then I put glue on the backs of small wiggle eyes and she put one up top and one down low. OK, so maybe she's not a genius.  Again, I waited for it to dry, then cut out all the parts of the paper plate that weren't covered by feathers. And this is what we got:
She's so proud of it! Here's mine:
I still plan on making a peacock out of the blue boxes someday, but I'm pretty happy with how these little turkeys turned out!