Thursday, September 30, 2010

Art Ideas

Since Dh has gone back to work, we have gotten ourselves into a semblance of a routine and I am so enjoying it! First of all, we have a weekly routine:
Monday - Pk to daycare, Baby Bean and I visit, either at our place or we go to see a friend
Pk's highland dance class
Tuesday - Pk at home, we do longer visits to my family in the city or we stay home and have a family day
Pk's Music for Young Children Class
Wednesday - Pk at daycare, Baby Bean and I go to Mother Goose at the library
Thursday - Pk home, Pk's Storytime at the library
Pk's swim lesson
Friday - Family Drop In at our church
Parenting Small Group at the Church
Saturday - Family Day
Sunday - Church and Family Day

I am finding that we have enough to do to keep from being bored but not so much that we feel overwhelmed. I also feel like I am comfortable that Pk is getting the equivalent of a nursery school programme so I don't feel concerned at all that she isn't attending a nursery school programme (which is "the done thing" around here, not that I see any significant differences between the nursery school kids, the Montessori kids and the kids who just come from homes who go out of their way to stimulate their kids). Life is good right now and I am really enjoying being home.

One of my favourite times of day right now happens during Baby Bean's nap, usually between 9 and 10, for an exactly 40 minute stretch (yes, I know, one baby sleep cycle, he doesn't seem to be able to stay awake past that during the day). That's my special time with Pk and we have been finding lots of fun things to do. That's when we do our "homeschooling time" - our activities from Slow and Steady, Get Me Ready, our learning games, our Bible time and, most especially, our art time. The art has been so much fun! I have found quite a few blogs with some fantastic suggestions. As you can see from the pics below, I usually leave Pk in her jammies until after art time (if she is going to make a mess of something, I'd rather it was her p.j.s and smocks only offer so much protection).

These two pics are from today's activity - we used food colouring to dye bags of salt different colours and then we poured glue on the paper and sprinkled the salt. The effect was pretty and in the places where she used copious amounts of glue the salt dissolved and the food colouring spread - very pretty!
Dh had the brilliant idea of hanging two clotheslines on the wall in Pk's room so that we could display some of our art products. I love being able to see what we are doing and to celebrate her creativity.
I have found some terrific resources online for art activities that I wanted to share. Here are a few of our current favourites:
The Crafty Crow - a super blog with links to fantastic children's art activities
The Artful Parent - I have gotten some wonderful inspiration here
Teach Preschool - art is only one aspect of her blog, all kinds of home/institutional learning ideas
Teach Mama - again, art is only one aspect but full of great learning ideas
One Pretty Thing - if you are at all crafty, this is a place to find ideas galore, with daily blog posts featuring links to all kinds of craft ideas gathered on different themes from all over the web
The Mother Huddle - food, craft and home ideas
Almost Unschoolers - all kinds of fun activities to do to teach children at home
Frugal Family Fun - inexpensive ideas for fun

What are some of your favourite places to find art activities?

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