Sunday, January 31, 2010

Valentines Love Monsters

These little Love Monsters are for the kids to find in our Valentines Day Hunt. They are quite easy to make and so much fun each can have its own little personality.

You will need
An egg carton
Wiggly Eyes
Pipe Cleaners, Pom Poms or anything else you would like to decorate them with

To Make
1 . Cut out the parts of the egg carton (the red monsters are from the bottom of the carton and the pink monsters are from the lid)
2 . Paint Them
3 . Let them dry
4 . Have fun and decorate them
These could easily be made into Love Bugs or Love Aliens anything that captures the imagination

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Valentines Door Hangers

At the House of Baby Piranha we do not really celebrate Valentines Day been the daughter of a florist Valentines Day has always seemed like a lot of work and a bit of a guise 'look i brought you a huge boquet of roses i must love you alot'. Looking around all the blogs I have a found a new outlook on Valentines Day it is the much simpler side making handmade tokens for those you love and this sits alot better with me. So i have decided to organise a Valentines Day Hunt (much like an easter egg hunt) in our backyard with handmade tokens from me to the kids. I have started by making Valentines Door hangers that can be hang on their bedroom doors. Although i have completed these while the kids are asleep they could easily join in especially with the painting.

You will need
Thick Cardboard
Box Cutter or other suitable cutting blade
Black Marker Pen
Paper (to draw your template on)

To Make
1 . Design your template i have used the word Love but you could use any word you like or even your childs name
2 . Cut out your Template
3 . Trace your template onto the thick cardboard and then cut it out with your blade
4 . Paint it
5 . Once dry outline the letters with Black Marker
6 . Add the ribbon for hanging

I have decided i will do these again in the future using the kids names and letting them paint and decorate them themselves I am sure they will have alot of fun.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Colourful Caterpillar

This is a really easy quick craft idea that Neevah really enjoyed she was able to do most of it by herself and she was really proud of her finished caterpillar.

Things you will need
Coloured patty pans / cup cake cases
Piece of Paper
Texta / Marker Pen
Coloured Pencils / Paints

To Make
1 .Give your child the piece of paper and coloured pencils to draw somewhere for the caterpillar to live
2 . While your child is drawing turn your patty pans inside out so the brightest colour will be facing out.
3 .Glue on the patty pans
4 .Draw on the face and legs with the marker pen (Neevah did this herself i just added the antennas for her) and your done.

from here we talked about what the caterpillar might like to eat and she decided she would like to make the caterpillar a flower for its lunch we did this by taping a bamboo skewer to the back of a patty pan so easy and she was one happy girl feeding her caterpillar.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Homemade Playdough Fun

Yesterday we went to visit Grandma (my mum) she gave us lots of bits to craft with including some cutters so today Neevah has requested to make playdough. I like to use the recipe found here. Neevah helped me to mix the food colouring into the playdough and we had a great converstaion about colours and we sang I Can Sing a Rainbow.

Liam liked playing with the cutters and trying to stick it to his face

Neevah liked rolling the playdough into snakes

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A Little Bit of Cuteness

Just sharing a little bit of cuteness today this is Liam trying to put blocks into my button jar

Monday, January 25, 2010

Koala Newspaper Collage

Another Australia Day craft. This is Neevah's first collage i was really excited to try this technique with her. I settled on a Koala as it fits the aussie animal theme and they don't come much more Australian than a koala. For this activity i have used a template for the koala (as i am not the best at drawing) also there is a bit of adult preparation needed.

Things you will need
Grey Material/Paper/Felt or Foam
Black Material/Paper/Felt or Foam
Small scrap of pink paper
2 Pieces of Construction Paper (A4)
Wiggly Eyes
Pen / Pencil
Tracing Paper / Baking Paper

To Make
1 . Copy the Koala template. You could do this by copying the template straight off the screen with some tracing paper or printing it out. You need the nose and ears as separate pieces to the basic head shape.
2 .Cut out Legs, Arms and Ears from the grey material. I choose material as i had an old pair of trackpants that could no longer be worn but you can use anything grey such as paper/felt or foam.
3 . Cut out the Nose from black material as above you can use whatever you have in black.
4 . Cut out the mouth from the pink scrap paper.
5 . Trace the basic body shape and head shape onto 1 piece of the construction paper ready so your child knows roughly where to collage. Keep these parts of the template they will be needed again.

6 .Cut strips of newspaper and then give to your child to rip into smaller pieces (i choose only the Black and White print pieces of the newspaper to give it an overall grey look)
7 .Let your child loose with the glue and newspaper pieces guide them to full in all the blank spaces don't worry if they go outside the template lines
8 .Let it dry if it needs to
9 .Lay the basic body and head template on top of the collage either trace around the template then cut it out or cut straight around the template
10. Now glue all the pieces onto a piece of construction paper so it forms the koala and then add the eyes, nose, and mouth
11 . Let It Dry

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Paper Chain Snake

Since Australia Day is Tuesday 26th January I thought this would be a great time to make some aussie animal crafts. Neevah had been asking for a few days if we could please make a snake so yesterday we went out and brought some green paper that i thought would be excellent to make paper chains in hindsight i wish i had chosen something a little bit brighter. You can make your snake any colour Green and Gold would be very patriotic for Australia Day or you could get your child to paint some paper and then cut it into strips to make a paper chain. I don't think i need to share a How To for this craft but i will share some photos of Neevah making her snake it really was a team effort.

Neevah getting the hang of holding the pieces of paper together so we can stick them

Neevah wrestling with the sticky tape but not letting go of her snake

All done time to play
Sharing her snack with the snake.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Glitter Incident

A few days ago my facebook status was 'there has been a glitter incident reports from the scene are of glitter carnage, detectives are in pursuit of a pesky fairy.' While I can see the funny side to the whole situation at the time it was a huge mess!

Neevah got hold of a big container of glitter which i thought was safely packed away in the cupboard. I heard a tell tale giggle and then quick as a flash she was running down the hall to the bedroom, into the bedroom, shut the door all the time with mum in pursuit and just as i opened the door she tipped the whole container upside down on the carpet. So that in itself is not so bad the mess was contained to one spot. I ushered Neevah out of the bedroom, shut the door and headed off to get the vacuum. By this time Liam had come to investigate Neevah opened the door for him so he could see the glitter. In the few minutes it took me to get the vacuum out Liam was having alot of glittery fun. He jumped in the glitter, he stomped in the glitter, he sat in the glitter, he swished it around with his hands and when he saw me comming he ran up the hall and jumped into the beanbag leaving a trail of glitter behind him. I vacuumed up the mess while this should be simple task somehow i ended up covered in glitter and the vacuum did as well. It has now been 3 or 4 days since the glitter incident we have now got rid of 90% of the glitter but it is still turning up in odd places like on my keyboard and on the bathroom taps which brings me to ask will we ever be glitter free?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Colour Matching Game

I found this great idea on the 4 Crazy Kings blog and knew i wanted to make it for the kids right away. I made it ever so slightly differently to the one on the blog mainly because i didn't have a paper plate and it was just after midnight when i started. Neevah has enjoyed playing with it this morning and after been shown how to pinch the pegs she did really well however it was a bit hard for Liam.

Things you will need
Thick Cardboard
Paint (i have used 6 different colours)
Pencil (to mark out segments)

To Make
1 . Draw a Circle on your Cardboard i did this with a compass but you could also draw around a dinner plate or something similar. Then cut it out.

2 . Divide your circle into 6 even segments (or as many segments as you need for each paint colour)

3 . Paint your segments and your pegs. I have used white plastic pegs as that is all i could find but you could also use wooden pegs.

4 . Let it dry ... the pegs might take a while to dry I left them over night.
This took me about 45 mins to make and was totally worth the extra late bedtime. Neevah said it is like building a sunshine which has given me another great idea.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Alien Eye Headbands

We made 2 of these alien eye headbands but Liam really didn't like them and destroyed them quite quickly. I would suggest you make these while the kids are asleep if you have young kids as alot of it will need to be done by an adult or with adult help.

What you will need:
2 pipe cleaners
2 patty pans / cup cake cases
Sticky tape
Texta or Marker pen

To Make
1 .Attach the pipe cleaners to the headband

2 .Draw eyes in the center of the patty pans with a marker pen

3 . Attach the patty pans to the pipe cleaners with sticky tape

and you are done!

A Few of our Favourite Things

Jumbo Chalk
The kids were given a bucket of Jumbo Chalk for Christmas and it has been played with almost everyday. Our pavers often look like an Art Gallery and the best thing is you can hose it off and start all over again.
Harriet, You'll Drive Me Wild
- by Mem Fox
This Book has been a big hit with both the kids. Neevah especially likes it and has requested it for her bedtime story many times this week and i really enjoy reading it to her. The story is about Harriet Harris and her mother.Harriet doesn't mean to be pesky but sometimes she is and her mother doesn't mean to lose her temper but sometimes she just does. But Harriet and her mother know that even when they do things they wish they hadn't, they still love each other very much.
Climbing Trees
Neevah loves to climb the little tree we have in our garden and pretend she is a monkey which may not to be to far from the truth.
Liam & Neevah both enjoy watching Playschool on ABC1. Each program contains a story, some songs normally with great actions that encourage children to join in and a variety of play ideas with things to make and do.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Ice Cream Cone with Sprinkles

It is rather hot here today and Neevah asked if she could have an Ice Cream but we are all out so I suggested we make one and here is what we came up with.

You Will Need
2 Pieces of Coloured Paper (one for the cone and one for the ice cream)
1 Piece of A4 Paper
Scrap paper & Hole Punch to make sprinkles
Coloured Pencils / Marker Pens

To Make
1 .Let your Child draw a background scene for the ice cream on the A4 piece of paper

2 .While they draw cute out the cone shape from one coloured piece of paper and the ice cream shape from the other piece of paper. Then hole punch your scrap paper to make the sprinkles (you may want to do this in advance if your child doesn't draw for long periods of time)

3 . Glue on the Cone and Ice Cream

4 . Put glue on the Ice Cream and stick on the sprinkles. Neevah added spots of glue and added each sprinkle individually but this could also be achieved by spreading out the glue and then dropping the sprinkles randomly

You should now have an Ice Cream Cone to hang on the fridge and one very happy kid

The Plan....

To put it simply my plan is to be more creative and to pass on my love of craft to my children.

Since Neevah has so far shown very little interest in her Alphabet I thought this would be a good place to start providing lots of opportunities for crafts and learning. I found this great blog No Time For Flashcards and it has provided me with a lot of inspiration and great crafts to try with the kids.

In a few weeks we will be starting a project I am calling A Letter A Week we will be doing a craft or project every weekday to do with the letter in the hope to increase Neevahs letter recognition. I have chosen to allocate projects only to the weekdays for now so it will give us a little bit of flexibility if we cant do a craft on any particular day we can catch it up on the weekend.

My Ideas so far
Monday - Introduce the Letter by turning it into an item that starts with that letter or decorating it with items that start with the letter eg S is for Snake
Tuesday - Library trip with Daddy to borrow books to do with the letter
Wednesday - Baking
Thursday - Craft
Friday - Pretend Play, Game or Craft

After the Crafting or Play i am hoping to reinforce the activity by singing a song or reading a book that ties in with what we have been doing that day.
I also think displaying the creations for the duration of the week would be a good idea and provide more opportunities to talk about Letters. I have not decided how we are going to do this yet.

I am very excited to start.....

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Baby Piranhas

While the image of a baby piranha may not invoke cute and cuddly thoughts in this situation it is meant with much affection. Neevah earnt this nickname for her enthusiastic breastfeeding style and Liam followed closely in her footsteps so for me it conjures images of closeness, cuddles, beautiful babies and on the flip side many sleepless nights. Even though they are no longer those breastfeeding babies they still are my baby piranhas.

Even as the toddler and preschooler they now are the analogy may still be true they are cheeky, mischevous and so full of life. They have there own funky groove and seem to explore the world with such wonder finding entertainment and fun in places i would never look.

This has brought me to plan a new project for myself and the kids......
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