No man is an island as the saying goes, and it’s so important for kids to learn how to work as a team from an early age. Sports can be an excellent way for children to develop as a team-player, but so can art!
Whether it’s at home for a play date, in the classroom, or if you dare; at a birthday party getting kids to work together on a group masterpiece is so rewarding….and not just for them, for you too!
Fosters peer learning
Stimulates critical thinking
Encourages problem solving
Develops oral communication
Helps accept constructive criticism
Promotes leadership skills
Resembles the reality of everyday life
Think BIG, work on a large scale: A huge piece of paper taped to the wall to create a landscape. A big piece of fabric or canvas taped to the floor for a Jackson Pollock style painting project
A single finished piece, not a joining together of smaller individual work: This calls for true team work. Encourages appreciation and enjoyment of process over product
Low on instructions big on creativity: Group projects are not the time for step by steps. This is time for creative freedom
A theme v a thing: Projects need to open enough to cater for variety in age and ability. It’s more effective if kids are allowed to really run with this one rather than setting to many limits – it’s amazing what they come up with!
HOW…..TEACHER’S TOP TIPS:
Have space, even work outside
Be organised, with supplies and cleaning gear ready in advance
Careful delegation: If kids are young you will need to step in to help with who does what, or who works where
Be ready to referee and encourage; fair play, patience and respect
Let them have fun!
The photos feature in this article, are of a giant canvas we prepared
in our “I ❤ Cooking” English through art Summer camp in Madrid. The kids had a blast, and the work was stunning!
Using pencil, the kids worked together to draw food and cooking related things on a huge piece of material that was taped to the floor. Then using fabric paint we painted the items and added lots of abstract splashes and marks. Finally, we went back over the original drawings with black permanent marker.
In this article I encourage working on a single work, but the beauty of this one was that in the end we were able to cut the material into strips so that the children could bring them home for beautiful table runners.
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So 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”!
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…..
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!
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
Place the template on one of the pieces of foam, ‘x’ facing up, and trace around it using the pen
Place the template on a 2nd piece of foam, ‘x’ facing down, and trace around it
Now cut both shapes out carefully
To hide any pen marks, prepare to stick them back to back with pen-marked sides facing in, towards each other
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
Carefully line the two hands up and press them together until they are stuck completely
Cut out extra symbols or letters from the 2nd colour foam, and stick it to the front of the hand for extra decoration
Now wear your giant hand with pride, and shout for your team!!
Why not upload a photo of your creation to Facebook or Instagram with #janehayescreative I’d love to see your work!
Emojis rock! These bright little yellow faces are so much fun, super on-trend, and loved by kids and big kids! Great as a fun craft activity, as party favours, or how about as a cute little addition to a birthday gift? Bring a smile to someone’s face, and a very happy grin to your own with this amazing DIY. Please share this post with your friends (Kiss Face)…
Paper glue stick, like my all time favorite Pritt Stick
Choose your favorite Emoji and practice drawing it on scrap paper.
Draw two circles on yellow paper. Cut them out using a scissors. Tip: Achieve perfect circles by drawing around the base or top of a glass.
Divide the facial features (eyes, smile, hearts, etc) of your emoji, and using a pencil draw some on one circle, and the rest on the other.Tip: Draw them as you want them to appear – for example; the left eye on the left of one circle, and the right eye on the right of the other circle. Tip: To ensure that all the features align correctly, once the first circle is done cover it with the second circle, and place them against the window. You should be able to see the features on the first and used them as a guide while drawing on the second.
Now, go over the feature in marker and colour them in.
Place a wooden kebab stick in the center of the back of one of the circles, point up.
Stick it to the paper using masking tape. Tip: To keep the wooden stick secure place the tape along the length of the stick, and add an extra piece at the top to form a ‘T’ shape.
Put paper glue on the back of the other circle, and stick it back to back with the first one, making sure that the features are aligned properly.
Finally, twirl the stick by putting it between your palms and moving them back and forward, and see your Emoji appear before your eyes
I’d love you to share this post pretty please….(hearts in my eyes)
Pom poms are a really great way to decorate any number of things. Add them to the corners of cushions, or the end of throws to “funk-up” your home decor. Or, why not use them to decorate gift-wrapped presents, key-rings or fun crafts such as bookmarks?
These mini pom poms are especially easy to make….
WHAT YOU NEED
To make one
3 meters of wool (yarn)
Cut 30 cm of wool from the 3 meter piece
Place the short piece between your index finger and the middle finger and let in hang there, half to the back of your hand and half to the front
Leaving a small gap between these fingers, start wrapping the long piece of wool around the tops of your fingers, use your thumb to hold the end of the wool secure against your index finger.
Make it about 3cm wide (basically don’t wind it below your knuckles), overlapping many times, and making sure to keep the wool as straight as possible to avoid knots
Now carefully pull the short piece of wool around the center area of the wrapped wool, and tie a knot
Gently slide the wrapped wool off your fingers, keeping the short, knotted piece in place
Now that it is off your fingers, pull the knot really tight, and then make a second knot, making sure it is secure
Take your scissors and carefully cut all the loops that have been formed, following the curved edge of your little ball, be careful not to cut the short piece of wool that is knotted around the middle
Finally, fluff-up the ball, and give it a trim to make it as round a possible
The tail that is hanging off can be used to attach the pom pom to your project, or if it is unnecessary, trim it so that it is the same length as the other pieces of wool