Shaving Cream Paintings

Shaving Cream Paintings

Children love the “magic” of combining colors to make a new color. Here’s an activity that will give your kindergartener hands-on practice with this concept. Let your child mash, squish, and mix his way to an understanding of color with some shaving cream and food coloring. This art and science activity will show your child how primary colors combine to make secondary colors.

What You Need:

  • Smock or apron
  • White aerosol shaving cream
  • Food coloring
  • Three zippered sandwich bags (more for extra discovery and exploring!)
  • White paper
  • Cotton swabs or small paintbrushes

What You Do:

  1. Learning can be messy, so make sure to put your smocks on first! Now put a plum-sized dollop of shaving cream into each of the three zippered sandwich bags.
  2. In one bag, carefully squeeze 3 drops of red and 3 drops of blue food coloring onto the shaving cream. In another bag, squeeze 3 drops of blue and 3 drops of yellow food coloring. In a third bag, squeeze 3 drops of red and 3 drops of yellow food coloring. Zip each bag closed.
  3. Ask your child to observe what happens when he kneads the shaving cream in each bag. How does the shaving cream change? What happens to the food coloring? What colors did red/blue, blue/yellow, and red/yellow turn into?
  4. If you want to extend the experiment, you can ask your child to predict what will happen when more or less drops of one of the primary colors are used. How can we make the colors deeper, less purplish, or more green? Will red and yellow always make orange? Will blue and red always make purple? Will blue and yellow always make green? Give him more shaving cream and zippered bags to find out.
  5. When he’s mixed enough colors, have your child use the cotton swabs or small paintbrushes to paint a picture using the colors he has created. The finished product with its unique color and texture is great for framing!

What’s Going On:

A opportunity for art as well as science, this activity allows your child to see first-hand how the primary colors (red, blue, yellow) can create the secondary colors (purple, green, and orange). And experimenting is an important part of discovery learning, and discovery learning is learning that lasts. As a bonus, the act of kneading the shaving cream for thorough mixing of colors gives your child an opportunity to work fine motor muscles that will be important in handwriting.

Wheels on the Bus Collage

Wheels on the Bus Collage

This is what we will do sometime this week, or maybe today if they get up early enough from nap time.

 

School will be starting soon. That means teachers, books, and a first ride on a school bus. Get back into school this year by taking an imaginary ride on…the art school bus! Use paper and paste to create a colorful collage of shapes in the form of a friendly school bus.

What You Need:

  • Construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick or white glue
  • Markers or crayons (optional)

What You Do:

  1. Show your child a picture of a school bus (either from a photo or an illustration in a book). Ask her to find different shapes in the bus. For example, the bus may look like a rectangle and the wheels like circles.
  2. Help your child to cut out paper shapes with the scissors. This should be fairly large in size and correspond to the shape of a school bus. Talk about all of the parts to a school bus including wheels and windows. If your child is having difficult cutting out the shapes herself, you may cut some for her. Have her watch you, and then mimic what you are doing with her own paper and scissors.
  3. Have your child arrange the shapes on another piece of construction paper to look like a school bus.
  4. Glue the shapes to the paper.
  5. Optional: Have your child add details to her school bus with markers or crayons.

Extend this activity by turning this project into a photo collage. Choose small photos of your child, her friends, and the family. Cut out the people in the photos and place them in the windows of the school bus or outside of the bus waving in.

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My Shape Book

My Shape Book

At the beginning of the year, kindergartens spend lots of time on shape recognition. more often than not, kids are introduced to shapes in preschool, but in kindergarten, they’ll start learning more about the way our world is made up of all those shapes. Here’s a great way for your child to get ready for the new challenges in a kindergarten classroom. Back in preschool there were lots of books to teach kids about shapes. Now’s a fun time to switch the roles. Help your child make her own shape book.

What You Need:

  • Construction paper in bright colors
  • White card stock paper
  • Marker
  • Scissors
  • Several 5×8 index cards
  • Digital Camera

What You Do:

  1. Take a walk with your child around your home and look for shapes.  You can help point out windows, or doors, or pictures, and trace your finger in the air around the object to help her visualize the shapes.
  2. Ask your child what shape she sees.
  3. Write the name of the object along with the a picture of the shape it represents on on an index card, and then tape it up.
  4. For example: “Door” would be an example of a rectangle.
  5. If your child knows the letter sounds, have her help you write the word. Have her sound it out phonetically.
  6. For example: Your child may only write “D-R” for door. Many kids do this—vowels are among the hardest letters to understand and use. Let your child misspell at this stage – there will be plenty of time later for corrections! If this is too challenging, however, don’t fret: let your child dictate and you can write the object’s name in clear block letters.
  7. Now take a photograph of your child next to each one of those shape locations, and make a book!
  8. Help your child make a cut-out of each shape, out of colored construction paper. Make sure to cut the shape no larger than 3×3 or so.
  9. Each page of the book will be a piece of white card stock paper, oriented horizontally. Glue the cut-out shape onto the upper left hand side of the page. On the other side of the page, help your child glue down the photo of her standing next to that particular shape in your home. Do this for four or five shapes, and you’ve got a shape beautiful book!
  10. Take one extra piece of blank paper, and help your child make it into a cover. Write “Shapes in My House” on the front, and have your child add decoration—whatever she likes! Make sure she signs her name as the author, too!
  11. Bind your book by stapling the left hand margins. This is sure to make your teacher’s day!

When you and your child are finished with the book, before she gives it to her teacher, go over the book with her and she how well she can recognize and identify the shapes in her home. You can do this activity without making a book any time you like with your child, to help giver her a leg up on those important kindergarten skills.

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First Day of School Craft

First Day of School Craft

There is perhaps no greater milestone for young children than beginning kindergarten. The first day of kindergarten is exciting and emotional for both parents and kids. And as parents know, kids grow up fast, and the first day of kindergarten flies by in an instant. Before you know it, your child will be in High School!

Want to preserve those special memories of your kindergartens very first day of school? Here’s a fun way to keep those special memories “hanging around!”

What You Need:

  • Plastic tube clothes hanger
  • Yarn
  • Scissors and hole punch
  • Photos from your child’s first day of Kindergarten
  • Colored card stock, or a colored index card
  • Markers, stickers, and crayons and any other decorative accessories your child might like

What You Do:

  1. The night before her first day of school, write “My First Day, Hooray!” on the card stock, along with the date. Have your child decorate the card with crayons, markers, and stickers etc however she likes. Then punch a hole in the top of the card, and attach it to the top of the hanger with a some yarn.
  2. Be sure to take some photographs from her first day: getting ready for school, packing the backpack, meeting the teacher, getting on or off the bus, etc. Punch a hole at the top of the photos.
  3. Save bits and pieces of items from your child’s first day of school: a note from the teacher, her name tag, a pencil from her supplies box, a snippet of a wrapper from her snack or lunch, a drawing of her teacher or classroom, etc.  As with the photographs, punch a whole at the top of any of the paper items you’ve saved.
  4. Lay the hanger flat, and arrange the items (the photographs and the keepsakes from her first day) below the hanger. Tie a length of yarn to each item and connect it to the bottom of the hanger, so that items will hang at different lengths, creating a mobile.
  5. Hang the completed mobile in your child’s room, where it can remind her of her very first day of school. Next year, when she’s ready to move on to the next grade level, hang her first day outfit on the hanger the night before school to help ease those first day jitters!

This activity is a great way to help your child shake off some of those nerves and get her excited about her first day of kindergarten! You can extend this activity by making a first day mobile for each grade that your child enters, to keep a creative and memorable record of all of your child’s First Days along her journey as a student.

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