Kid’s Christmas Gifts that Aid Development & Won’t Cost the Earth

Ready Steady Cook – Mini chef’s accessories

picsart_07-13-02-11-05Kids just love cooking! It is fantastic for development and learning at all ages, and is such a rewarding activity when you tackle it together. So why not by your little one an apron, chefs hat or even their very own wooden spoon and bowl? Sure, it involves some commitment from you too, but the shared experience is worth the mess! And when you can’t face the mayhem, these items are great for encouraging imaginative play too.  Tell them the oven is broken and just let them play make-believe!

Imaginative Play – Bits & bobs for dress-up

Group paiting and child (2).jpgImaginative play is such a great way to inspire children’s imaginations and creativity, and it really helps them to socialise and verbalise.  How about some fancy dress items? But, don’t  feel your only option is to head to the shop to buy princess and pirate outfits. Make something simple, or pop into your local chary shop instead, and pick up some hats, shawls, vintage glasses and bow-ties to encourage them to create their own characters and stories….imagine the fun!

Early Years Art Childrens Development Gross Motor SkillsGoing BIG – Large drawing material

You can go for an easel, large whiteboard, A0 drawing pad, or even grab one of those flip-charts from the boardroom.  Or if you dare….why not go all out  with a can of blackboard paint that you are willing to dedicate a wall to there and then. Drawing in large surfaces is not alone great for gross motor-skill development, but the freedom really opens up the children’s imaginations a creativity too!

 Getting Out & About – Binoculars, magnifying glasses and morechild-with-looking-glass

It is so important to encourage children to get outside, explore their surroundings, build up their immune system, and have fun getting muddy….it’s all part of growing up.  So what toys are good for that, bikes and scooters sure, and for something simpler, how about a pair of binoculars, or “pinoculars” as by brother used to call them when he was little (Ahhhwww)! Or, what about a simple magnifying glass? Yes, now were’re talking.  Imaging how much fun they will have looking under rocks and at those creepy crawlies.

Construction Time – Anything that gets them buildingEarly Years Art Childrens Development

Building, constructing, creating…any gift that encourages this is a winner.  Logo and Meccano, or duple and building blocks for the toddlers area classic kids toys, but are also proven to have endless benefits for our little ones.  Construction encourages thinking and reasoning, and involve lots of focus and patience, super important characteristics to nurture.  But don’t forget, a decent collection of card, cartons, paper and plastics pots can be equally as inspiring.

P.S.  Books, art supplies, and musical instruments, are always top of my list too!

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Stunning Hand-painted 2016 Calendars: FREE to Download & Print

Let’s get organised! Download & print your free, hand-painted 2016 monthly calendar here. As a thank you, please join my mailing list, that way I can let you know about other great projects!

Click the image to download this month’s calendar PDF

December 2016 Free Printable Calendar from Janehayescreative.com   November 2016 Free Printable Calendar from Janehayescreative.com  october-2016-free-printable-calendar-lr   September 2016 Free Printable Calendar from Janehayescreative.com  August 2016 Free Printable Calendar from Janehayescreative.com   July-2016-Calendar-Printable-SWI  June-2016-Calendar-Printable-SWI   May-2016-Calendar-Printable-SWI

Call back next month!

ART//CRAFT//CREATE

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https://janehayescreative.files.wordpress.com/2016/07/free-calendar-printable-august-2016.jpg?w=480″ alt=”Free Calendar Printable August 2016 featuring Handpainted Cactus and red and orange Watercolour”

Follow My Voyage….Baboró Early Year Arts Mentorship 2016: Part III

During my mentorship with the Baboró International Children’s Festival, I really began to appreciate the functional benefits of early years art, as well as the poetic that I discussed in my last article.  Early years art is an exceptional way to aid children’s development, and helps them to strengthen key skills along their developmental journey.

Gross motor skills

Get them moving….gross motor skills involve arms, legs, feet, and the entire body. Art projects that require young artists to stretch and move while creating are fantastic for developing this skill set. The large movements required for painting or drawing on a large surface such as on the floor or on the wall build coordination and strength.

Fine motor skills

Early Years Art Childrens Development Fine Motor SkillsThe smaller movements of fingers, hands, and wrists required to use a scissors, work with clay, peel and stick stickers, or draw on small surfaces develop fine motor dexterity and control.

Developmental milestones around age 3 usually include drawing a circle and beginning to use safety scissors. Many preschool programmes emphasize the use of scissors because it develops the dexterity children will later need for writing.

Visual motor skills

Hand eye coordination or visual motor skill is the ability of the eyes to guide the hands in movements. This will go on to be very important when it comes to learning how to write for example.  So many elements of the art making process encourage improvements in the area of visual motor skills, such as cutting, threading, tracing and making patterns, and for the very young simple pouring and filling activities are a wonderful start.

Language and cognitive skills

Making art and talking through the process is an excellent opportunity to learn new words and apply meaning, especially when it comes to colours, shapes and actions. Take a simple activity such as crumpling up paper and calling it a “ball.”, children as young as 1 year old can learn in this way through making and repetition.

Oral motor skills Early Years Art Childrens Development Gross Motor Skills

Little kids need to strengthen and develop important lips, tongue, and jaw muscles,  which effect their progress with feeding and speech. Fun activities that involve blowing bubbles, or blowing paint are exceptional for improving oral motor skills, and great fun too!

Social and communication skills

Art is often about problem-solving and through art children can experience a healthy
sense of pride in their accomplishments. Making decisions about how to hold a paint brush, which color to use or how to thread a bead are important lessons that strengthen confidence and emotional maturity.

Working in a group on a art project involves important lessons on sharing, developing empathy for others, self regulation and taking instruction, all of which contribute to a positive learning environment.

According to UNESCO, “the encouragement of creativity from an early age is one of the best guarantees of growth in a healthy environment of self-esteem and mutual respect – critical ingredients for building a culture of peace.”

Follow me on Instagram for coverage of my experiences with the children and early years art.

DIY Wedding: Stunning Moon & Stars Photo Booth

You may be interested in contacting me about one of the most special items that I designed for our wedding in September 2015 – our moon photo booth.

Stunning moon photo booth for wedding. Edwardian paper moon theme event, featuring original backdrop. Southeast Ireland Hire. Classy and elegant wedding decor. www.janehayescreative.com

As the wedding started to take on an Edwardian feel I began to research the era more and more.  And one of the most stunning things I came across was the use of “paper moons” in wedding photography.

I came up with the design, and my friend and neighbor Paul, a gifted carpenter cut and made the structure for me.  My uncle and I spent some very fun days together painting it, such great memories!

Stunning moon photo booth for wedding. Edwardian paper moon theme event, featuring original backdrop. Southeast Ireland Hire. Classy and elegant wedding decor. www.janehayescreative.com

Photographers in the early 1900’s used the constructions as backdrops or props for portrait photography, and especially for those of newly married couples. You can see some examples here on my Pinterest board.

Stunning moon photo booth for wedding. Edwardian paper moon theme event, featuring original backdrop. Southeast Ireland Hire. Classy and elegant wedding decor. www.janehayescreative.com

It looked stunning in the background of the venue, and made the most wonderful prop for lots of great shots of us and our guests, complete with fancy dress!  Everyone really enjoyed it, and there was a line all night for group shots!

Stunning moon photo booth for wedding. Edwardian paper moon theme event, featuring original backdrop. Southeast Ireland Hire. Classy and elegant wedding decor. www.janehayescreative.com

If you are considering having a stunning moon backdrop or photo-booth at your wedding or event Contact me for further details. It certainly is something unique.

Stunning moon photo booth for wedding. Edwardian paper moon theme event, featuring original backdrop. Southeast Ireland Hire. Classy and elegant wedding decor. www.janehayescreative.com

ART//CRAFT//CRATE

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The Essential Art & Craft Supply List For Kids

Kids-Art-SuppliesSo you’re a great parent who wants to encourage creativity at home, or a new teacher who doesn’t know where to begin…..let’s talk essential craft supplies for kids.  I’m an artist and teacher and am here to tell you exactly what you do and don’t need….and stop you from breaking the bank!

Below you’ll find a excellent list that is genuinely based on my own personal experience and preferences from working with children.   You can also download & print my super smart Kids Art and Craft Supply Checklist to help you get on track right now!

* The asterisked items are my “can’t live withouts”!

Mark Making
  • Pencils *
  • Colouring pencils *
  • Paint markers such as  Uni-posca Paint Markers
  • Regular colouring markers
  • Chalk
  • Rubbers/ erasers *
  • Toppers/ sharpeners  *
  • Rulers
Cutting & Sticking
  • Kids scissors *
  • Sellotape/ sticky tape
  • Masking tape
  • Stapler
  • Paper glue stick, like my all-time favourite Pritt Stick  *
  • PVA glue
  • Multi-use glue
Painting
  • Paint brushes *
  • Liquid watercolour
  • Tempera/ poster paint *
  • Acrylic paint
  • Clean yogurt cartons for paint pots *
  • Old glass jars for water
  • Old plates for pallets
 Paper & Card
  • White printer paper *
  • Coloured paper/ construction paper
  • Coloured card *
  • Old magazines
  • Old cardboard
  • Toilet roll inserts
Textiles
  • Wool *
  • Coloured felt sheets *
  • Coloured foam sheets
  • String
  • Needles & thread
  • Ribbons
  • Googly eyes
  • Beads
  • Glitter
  • Sequence

Print my Kids Art and Craft Supply Checklist  PDF now to help you get organised

Jane’s Top Tips

Essential Art and craft supplies for kids. What materials you need at home     Essential Art and craft supplies for kids. What materials you need at home

  • Rubbers/ erasers: Although they are essential, I try to encourage kids to embrace their mistakes.
  • Rulers: I discourage kids from worrying about straight lines but sometimes rulers are very useful.
  • Paint brushes: Round-head, medium thickness paint brushes, with a pointed tip cover a multitude.
  • Paint markers – such as  Uni-posca Paint Markers : These cost more than regular markers but are so versatile. They work on so many surfaces, and produce strong, vibrant colours even on a coloured background – I wish they had these when I was a kid!
  • Crayons: Crayons are my go-to option for younger kids, but they are also fantastic for special projects such as water resist technique. White crayons are a must!
  • Multi-use glue: Adult supervision is need with this as it is toxic, and very strong, but an excellent option for fabric, felt, plastic and wood.
  • Acrylic paint: Although it is not on my essentials list acrylic is my favourite paint because the colours are so strong, vibrant and smooth. But it is not easy to wash from clothes, are is more expensive than the other more kid-friendly options.
  • A3 paper & card: I always buy A3 paper and card because if you need smaller you simply cut it to size.

Jane’s ultimate Top 3 MUST HAVE items for unlimited creativity…..

  1. Coloured card
  2. Paint markers – Uni-posca Paint Markers
  3. Paper glue stick, like my all-time favorite Pritt Stick

What are your personal favourites when it comes to kids supplies?  I’d love to see which of mine are and are not on your list.  Please leave me a comment below!

Cool Kid’s Party Megaphone

A cool toy, party prop, or super fun sport’s fan accessory – this megaphone is a BIG hit with little super stars! It’s so easy to make, and is an inexpensive way to add colour and fun to a DIY party . Know a sports fan? Why not combine it my Giant Foam Hands DIY for something extra to cheer about!

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

WHAT YOU NEED

  • 1 piece of A3 coloured card
  • Stapler
  • Scissors
  • 1 sheet of coloured tissue paper
  • Paper glue, like my all time favorite Pritt Stick

HOW TO

  1. Curve the card into a cone shape, leaving a gap at the smaller end, big enough to get the stapler inside
  2. Secure the shape by stapling it in as many places as possible
  3. Using the scissors, trim the excess card at both ends and along the side to create an even cone shape
  4. Now to make a tissue paper fringe, cut a strip of tissue long enough to wrap around the large end of the cone, and about 10cm wide
  5. Fold the strip of tissue a number of times, then using the scissors cut from the open edge (not the folded edge) into the center of the paper at even intervals
  6. Apply glue around the outside of the large end of the card cone
  7. Unfold the tissue paper, and stick the uncut side the edge to the glued card, leave the fringe to hang over the edge.
  8. For a fuller look, make a second(or more) fringe and stick it on top of the previous one
  9. Now give us a big shout out from your super fun megaphone!

 

Why not upload a photo of your creation to Facebook or Instagram with #janehayescreative I’d love to see your work!

DIY Party Trumpet or Megaphone for kids. Art and craft project with step by step guide.DIY Party Trumpet or Megaphone for kids. Art and craft project with step by step guide.DIY Party Trumpet or Megaphone for kids. Art and craft project with step by step guide.DIY Party Trumpet or Megaphone for kids. Art and craft project with step by step guide.DIY Party Trumpet or Megaphone for kids. Art and craft project with step by step guide.DIY Party Trumpet or Megaphone for kids. Art and craft project with step by step guide.DIY Party Trumpet or Megaphone for kids. Art and craft project with step by step guide.

Go team……ART//CRAFT//CREATE

DIY Party Trumpet or Megaphone for kids. Art and craft project with step by step guide.

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Giant Foam Hands for Mini Sports Fans!

Let’s cheer on our favorite sports teams with this super cool foam hand DIY. Be it football, GAA or basketball that you love, you can show your support! They are so easy to make, especially with the help of my free printable, to guide you with the hand shape. A4 is a great size “giant” hand for little ones up to 5 or 6 years old, but why not go crazy and scale them up to A3 size for big kids, and adults too!

Now all you have to decide is which team you’re shouting for…..ART//CRAFT//CREATE

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

WHAT YOU NEED

  • Free printable hand template
  • 3 pieces of A4, thin foam sheets in your team’s colours: 2 in one colour, 1 in another  (or card will do fine too)
  • Scissors
  • Ball-point pen
  • Craft glue/ glue gun for hot glue (parent super vision needed)

HOW TO

  1. Print your free printable hand template and cut it out
  2. Place the template on one of the pieces of foam, ‘x’ facing up, and trace around it using the pen
  3. Place the template on a 2nd piece of foam, ‘x’ facing down, and trace around it
  4. Now cut both shapes out carefully
  5. To hide any pen marks, prepare to stick them back to back with pen-marked sides facing in, towards each other
  6. Using craft glue or a hot-glue gun, run a line of glue around the edge of one of the hands (on the pen-marked side), as close to the edge as possible. DO NOT put glue along the bottom edge where the wrist is
  7. Carefully line the two hands up and press them together until they are stuck completely
  8. Cut out extra symbols or letters from the 2nd colour foam, and stick it to the front of the hand for extra decoration
  9. Now wear your giant hand with pride, and shout for your team!!

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

Giant Foam Hands for Mini Football Fans! Kids craft step by step. Jane Hayes Creative

Why not upload a photo of your creation to Facebook or Instagram with #janehayescreative I’d love to see your work!

Want backstage access to free material and printables? JOIN MY MAILING LIST right now!