With Valentine’s day right around the corner, we think combining arts and crafts with reading and writing is a perfect winter activity for students. Here are three fun ways to incorporate literacy at home, while getting in the Valentine’s Day spirit!
Looking for a fun, book-related project?
1. Make a Mouse Puppet:
2. Make a Moose:
3. Play a Muffin Game:
We were recently reminded of one of our favorite projects from this year: monster books. Download the file below to make your own! These can easily be modified as regular books, recipe books, journals, spell books, etc.
Check out the following links to create your own mini superheroes and villains! Our students LOVED making these.
On March 7th, Milessa Ortiz and Jane Lavino gave a presentation on encouraging children to become more involved in the arts. They shared several ideas on how to talk to children about art, which makes trips to art museums much more fun. (Nonetheless, it is important to note that these conversations about art can happen pretty much anywhere! Especially when reading picture books!)
The pair, who joined us from the National Museum of Wildlife Art, also discussed how to encourage children in their own art making. As Milessa stated, "Studies have shown that children who are involved in the arts are more confident, happier, and less stressed. They are also more independent, better communicators, and are more creative. They are more likely to love learning, and more motivated to want to go to school. One interesting study tested the children’s saliva for the stress hormone, cortisol, before and after participation in an art class. Children had lower levels of the stress hormone after the art class compared to before the art class!"
For more tips on talking about art with your child or student, download the file below.
This activity is a fun way to mix literacy with art.
Materials Needed: watered down paints in squirt bottles, salad spinner, card stock paper, Life in the Rain Forest by William K. Gibbons, watercolors, printed templates (of any animal desired)
Step 1: Read students different sections from Life in the Rain Forest, or a similar nonfiction text.
Step 2: Ask students to come up, one at a time, to make a salad spinner snake. Other students may paint with watercolor paints while they wait.
Step 3: To make a salad spinner snake, students will take their snake, which is printed on card stock and pre-cut by the teacher, and put it in the salad spinner. Then, using the watered down paint in squirt bottles, the teacher will ask students to choose their colors and a design. The student will then be invited to spin their artwork in the salad spinner.
Teach children about traditional instruments, while involving story-telling!
Outside Sources (If Applicable): Inspired by http://www.danyabanya.com/diy-rain-sticks/#_a5y_p=3846035
Materials Needed: Hammers, cylindrical tubes (pringles cans or tin cans), nails, rice, popcorn kernels, pasta, tape, feathers, string, paper, markers, hot glue, pictures from South America and North America (optional) for decoration
Step 1: Assemble your group of children and assist them with writing a group story about why they need rain sticks. Use the prompt “First, Next, and Last” to structure their story. Write/draw out their ideas on a large sheet of paper.
Step 2: Each child will be asked to select a container. Students will then select the materials they want to use to be the noise-makers of their instruments. We will have a selection of different noisy, cheap objects, such as pasta, rice, and popcorn kernels. Students will put their noisemakers inside of their cylindrical tube.
Step 3: Students will seal the ends of their tubes (aka rain sticks) with duct tape.
This blog is designed to inspire literacy learning beyond the walls of TLC. Check back each week for timely content geared towards engaging families and volunteers alike.