Salt Painting Techniques

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This year I am taking time to collaborate with more projects that are in tune with my blog’s themes.

This month I am participating in two series. One of them is Painting Challenge: Fun Painting Techniques organized by Messy Little Monster.

I chose to work with Salt Painting Techniques. It is a very fun way of painting and it offers a unique sensory experience.

Supplies needed:

Construction paper
Brushes
Water paints
Liquid glue (we made a homemade glue)
Stick glue
Salt
Colourful chalk

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CWOV

Preparation:

Since we will need colourful salt one way to dye it is to rub pieces of chalk against it. This way your salt will be dry and keep longer. The salt we used has been kept in an airtight jar for over 2 years!

Technique 1:

It is done with stick glue and salt. You can read more about it in one of my previous posts.

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Technique 2:

Using liquid glue, make splashes on the paper. Generously apply Colored salt. Fold the paper into half, wait few seconds gently pressing on the surface. Now open for the result!

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Technique 3:

Apply liquid glue on the paper. Sprinkle white salt over. Now, take the water paints and drip over the salt. The paint will spread on the salt and glue creating

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Please check all previous posts on painting techniques!

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Creative Tuesday: Collages for Love

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Last week the world celebrated Valentine’s Day which coincided with the 14th Day post Spring Festival – the Lantern Festival.
Growing up in Soviet Russia, we never celebrated Valentine’s Day and I had not much of an idea what it was till I read about it at the University during one of the European History classes.
When I first came to China and became an expat, it was fun doing something for Valentine’s with my friends but the idea never really appealed to me and that was just it – a fun day to eat chocolate and go out with friends.
Now in our family we don’t celebrate Valentine’s. However, I take it as an opportunity to talk about the Virtue of Love.
As I mentioned in my previous post, I’ve been homebound with the children due to cold weather and a cold/sinus infection. Since I felt better by Friday, I spent whole morning with my 5 year old and 19 months old making collages for love and appreciation.

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The idea is simple: cut out few big hearts and a bunch of smaller hearts. We also used colorful contact paper to make hearts. Then place the bigger heart in the middle of the big sheet of white paper and stick smaller hearts around in a desired order. Write your love messages  and put them on display!

 

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Suggested materials: white sheets of paper, construction paper, colorful contact paper, regular color paper, scissors, glue, pencils, crayons, markers.
What did you do for Valentine’s Day? Do you celebrate it in your family? How do you show your appreciation and love to your family members?

Creative Tuesday: Flashback – TP Roll Candy

TP roll candy

We had so much fun last year making this TP Roll and Tissue Paper Candy with toddlers, that I modified this activity to make with older children. I can repeat it over and over again – this can make a great gift as well as a decoration. You just need to put the actual candy, packed nuts, packed chocolates (like, mini-chocolate bars) or even mini-packs of dried fruit, as well as small toys, pack away and give to your family and friends!

The principle of making this TP Roll Candy is the same as in the link I provided above, we just took a piece of plain paper and colored it and we used decorative ribbons instead of threads to tie the ends.

TP roll candy 2

 

Miss A who is almost 19 months old loved participating in the coloring part along with the older children! She had a blast!

TP roll candy 1

 

This activity helps develop creativity, sense of color, fine motor skills, pincer grasp and assists language development (as well as foreign language due to color naming and naming of the verbs of action and movement).

Toilet roll and tissue paper candy

Yes, you read it right – it is indeed a candy made out of toilet paper roll and tissue paper (kitchen tissue towel in this case)! The trick is that you can fill it with actual candy (I used M&Ms) and it would make a wonderful gift!

What you will need:

Toilet paper roll

Kitchen tissue towels (Crepe paper would do)

2 pieces of string or ribbon

Glue

Markers

How to do it:

1. Fold the edges of the toilet paper roll as in the picture.

2. Apply glue all over.

3. Wrap the roll into the paper, securing the edge at the end.

4. Gather and tie the ends of the paper.

5. Using markers, draw or put dots.

My daughter and the tots in my class had fun with these! They took their candies home to discover the M&Ms inside!

Got any gift wrapping ideas? Share with me – I’d love to know!

Creative Tuesday: Paper Cup Turtle

Welcome to my Creative Tuesday series! Today I will share with you how to make a Paper Cup Turtle. I came up with this activity while fiddling with cut-up pieces of paper cup while my daughter was making something else (which I will share with you in another post). 

There is not much science to it. It is a fun activity, aimed at children who can hold scissors and cut with them.

Here’s how you make it:

1. Take 1 or 2 paper cups (I took 2 as I wanted the shell part to be higher and bigger). Make 6 cuts on the sides of the cup, as long as you need.

2. Now to “model” the cut up parts: shape one in as a small triangular tail; the exactly opposite – as a head; and 4 legs. Bend them slightly up, so your turtle is “standing”.

3. Take a marker and draw eyes, nose and mouth.

4. We used green marker to draw the design on the shell part.

5. If you are using 2 cups: cut the 2nd cup into half. It will be the shell. Draw the designs. Put it on top of the first cup. You can either glue it to the lower cup or let it be removable (like ours).

You can make a whole family of turtles for a fun play!

Do you make animals out of paper cups? If so, please share with me – I’d love to know!

Puzzles: creative thinking and logic development

Puzzles are known to be really great for children. They are not only entertaining and can keep your child occupied for a long time, they are also a great way for bonding between parents and children; and if done together by more than 1 child, they help learning a virtue of cooperation.

Here are some other important benefits of other puzzle making activities:

– Hand-eye coordination

– Gross motor skills development

– Fine motor skills development

– Shape recognition development

– Problem solving skills development

– Short and long memory development

– Attention span development

– Creative thinking and imagination development

Not all children are interested in puzzle from a very early age. However, there comes time when they get very interested and can sit with puzzles for a very long time.

How to encourage a puzzle activity? Here are some tips I used with our older daughter and with children I taught in the past:

1. Start with simple puzzles (2 pieces are the best). Children get familiarized with the pictures and the concept and you will notice when they are ready for more.

2. It is the best to use puzzles made from harder material (e.g. cardboard paper, plastic, wood). Soft paper can become a choking hazard.

3. Choose puzzles according to your child’s current interest or the theme that you are currently using to introduce to your child (animals, plants, objects, shapes etc).

4. Start with basic colours and not too colourful puzzles. Why? Because for a very young child a burst of colours can be very confusing and hard to process. Basics and simple colour schemes are easier to recognize and manipulate.

5. Making your own puzzles from the safe materials is always the best choice. Your child can participate in puzzle-making by helping to cut or tear a picture.

6. For older children puzzles that require colouring after being assembled are tons of fun. Some companies make puzzles that are made for dry-erase crayons or markers that can be coloured on numerous times.

7. Always supervise puzzle-making activity with your young child. Talk through the process. And of course, help when needed. The child will be more interested in puzzle making when it is an accompanied activity. Later, when he grows older it becomes more independent type of activity.

Does your child enjoy making puzzles? I’d love to hear about it from you!