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Chinese New Year: horse pictures

As 2014 is the year of the horse, today we did some horse pictures.

I am rubbish at drawing (even my stick men look a little odd!) and I don’t have a printer to print off a template but luckily we have a play dough cutter in the shape of a horse which we used as a template.

Instead of just getting the kids to paint the horse, we did some bubble wrap printing. I’d seen this on various websites and sounded much more fun and a great way of adding texture to a picture, especially as they both love playing with the rolling pins when we are baking or playing with dough.

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I taped some bubble wrap onto rolling pins and rollers and gave them a paper plate with some brown and white paint on, and some pieces of red paper. We rolled the pins and rollers into the paint lightly – just enough to cover the wrap otherwise just saturates paper – and rolled them over the paper. Because our horses were going to be quite small, I thought it easier for them to roll on bigger paper and then cut the horses out afterwards. They had great fun doing this!

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Once they had dried we drew round the cookie cutter and cut them out, and then backed them onto white paper to make them stand out, and then Harrison stuck them onto red card. We made a mane and tail for them out of black wool.

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Whenever we get paint out, the kids inevitably end up painting their hands – we are all a bit obsessed with handprints – and today was no exception. Turns out that brown handprints make excellent horses, with the help of a blob of brown paint for a head and a googly eye. I was going to try and write their names in Chinese on their pictures (aided by Google translate!) but the writing was way too intricate and artistic for me to attempt!

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For the Kids Fridays at SunScholars.com

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Chinese New Year: dragons, fans and lanterns

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We did a couple of things today for our Chinese new year wall today, mostly involving lots of red, yellow and orange paint!

First of all we did some lovely Chinese dragons using our handprints. We painted our hands red and did some sidewards handprints on white paper and did the same over the top with orange and yellow paint. Once they had dried we cut it out and stuck it to red paper, adding legs and head made out of paper.

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To save on washing up paint trays, (yes I’m lazy!) we used paper plates for the paint. The paint had all swirled together and looked really pretty – far too pretty to throw away – so we turned the plates into fans! We spread the paint over the entire plate and then pressed the plate to a sheet of paper. This left a lovely print on the paper (which we used in our next activity!) and left a marbly type effect on the plate. We left the plates to dry and cut them in half and then the kids decorated them with black felt tips.

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Using the print off the plate, we made a lantern. Once the print had dried we cut it out and stuck it to red paper, adding detail to the top and bottom with black felt tip.

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Our Chinese wall is looking great!

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Mini Creations
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Chinese New Year: lanterns

Today, to kick off our week of Chinese New Year themed activities, we made some Chinese lanterns. These were really easy to make and so pretty.

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I had set all the things last night, including a tray with some sparkly pom poms, feathers, red and gold sequins and glitter. As soon as Harrison saw these (at 6.45am!!!) he wanted to get stuck in!

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I had done the cutting of the lanterns already for Alex, and for Harrison I had folded and drew lines on it as a cutting guide, as we are working on scissor control and this was a perfect activity for doing this.

Start off by folding a piece of A4 paper or card in half to make along thin rectangle shape (heard this being called ‘hot dog fold’ – the opposite way is ‘hamburger’!).
Make a series of cuts along the fold line (we did about ten cuts) but don’t cut all the way to the edge of the paper.

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Open up the paper (this is the stage when we decorated it) and then using either tape or glue stick the two short ends of the paper together.
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Attach a strip of paper as a handle and there is your lantern!

Traditionally they should be red and gold, as these are the colours of wealth, luck and prosperity but we made a few in different colours as well. We used all sorts of bits from our craft cupboard to decorate it but could be as simple as drawing or painting on them. You can make them as table centrepieces, or string a few of them together to make a garland of them.

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The Very Hungry Caterpillar: toeprints

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As well as our handprint caterpillars today, we made toe print ones!!! We painted our toes green, forgetting at first that the Very Hungry Caterpillar has a red head (hence why some are red!). This was fun because the paint was cold and slimy on toes, and tickled!!

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Then we printed lots of them onto a sheet of white paper.

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When they were dry we cut ten of them out and stuck them down to make a page of ten very hungry caterpillars!

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The Very Hungry Caterpillar: handprints

I love handprints! You can make just about anything out of a handprint or footprint, it makes a lovely memento and is an excellent tactile and sensory thing to do. When Harrison was little he really hated getting his hands dirty and touch anything messy but now loves painting his hands! When we were decorating our living room before Christmas we gave him a little paintbrush and some paint to ‘help’. He immediately painted his hands and proceeded to help decorate with handprints! Alex has always loved having his hands painted, obviously not as sensitive!

To carry on with our Very Hungry Caterpillar theme, we made caterpillar handprints. I saw this idea on Pinterest somewhere so can’t take credit for the idea!

All you need is blue, green and red paint, white paper and a black pen 

I painted the palms of their hands green and their fingers blue

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and then repeatedly printed them in a row on the paper. We did three or four prints. When we had done this (and washed the paint off!), we painted a bright red head for the caterpillar and left the pictures to dry. Once they had dried we drew on antenna and eyes and mouth with black pen.

What do you think?

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Salt and food colouring pictures

We loved doing this activity this morning!!

To do this you need some paper or card, PVA glue, food colouring, table salt and water.

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On the paper, ‘draw’ your picture with the PVA glue. We used paintbrushes and just sort of splodged glue around but obviously the older the children or the more artistic you are, the more detailed your pictures could be!

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When you’ve done this, sprinkle it liberally with table salt, making sure all the glue is covered in a decent amount, then shake off the excess.

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Mix some food colouring with water. At first I watered the colour down a bit too much and the colour was weak. To get decent colour you need about seven or eight drops of food colouring in a tablespoon or so of water. This makes it nice and vibrant. Use a paintbrush or a pipette to drop the coloured water onto the salt and watch the colour spread through the salt. Harrison thought it was magical, and excitedly told me the colour was ‘growing’!

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I’m imagining some gorgeous firework display pictures around bonfire night on black paper!

Romanian Mum

div align=”center”>Romanian Mum