My husband is not easy to find gifts for – as my children agree. However, I often find an acceptable present for him while roaming the shelves at my local bookstore. My husband now knows that I do this as he always guesses what my gift is (he is, of course, aided by the shape of the offering!). He guessed correctly on Sunday that I had bought him a bibliography – though he could not guess whose. He was happy to see that I offered him one on Bruce Lee – someone whom he has admired for years. The author did his research for 10 years and it looks like he was thorough.
My husband’s guesses made me smile. After being together so long, he definitely knows many of my choices. I think now he would be disappointed if I did not find an interesting book for him to read!
This year I decided to make a Christmas tree ornament for each child in my class. I decided on a star as it could be enjoyed by those children who are not Christian. In order to make these gifts, I dug into my drawer for the bits of leftover wool from previous projects. In my search on the internet, I found something that I liked. But, alas, there was no pattern. I thank my mom for figuring it out from the picture I had found.
The pattern has three rows. To begin, chain 5. Join the chains to close into a circle.
Row 1: ch 3, 2 dc (this is the first group), ch 2, 3 dc (this is the second group). You are to make 5 groups all together.
Row 2: Slip stitch through 3 chains to get to first space. ch 3, 2 dc, ch 2, 3 dc in same space. Into the next space do *3 dc, 2 ch, 3 dc*. Continue with * until row is complete.
Row 3: ch 3, 2 dc, ch 3, 3 dc in first space. st into next space. **3 dc, ch3, 3dc, st** into next space. Continue **until row is complete.
Once all the stars had been made, I decided to stiffen them and decorate them with glitter. Before stiffening, I tied a bow on each star and tied on some wool from which to hang the ornaments. To stiffen my work, I used the white craft glue that becomes transparent when it dries. I placed some glue in a yogurt cup and mixed it with water and brushed the glue onto each star with a firm paintbrush. Before the glue had a chance to dry, I sprinkled some glitter onto each piece. I chose to work with silver but there are other colours one could choose: gold, blue, green and even red.
I left the ornaments to dry overnight. The next day, they were ready to be handed out. As I had a range of colours, I let the children choose which one they would like. I did not forget my own children, of course. Before taking the bulk of the stars to school to distribute, I gave them the opportunity to choose the ones they liked:
These now grace our tree. I am thinking that next year I will try out another pattern to help decorate the tree.
When we think of Art, we often think of the Masters: Renoir, Monet, Picasso. However, each of us have a little artist inside – an artist which we often give free reign when we are young. I have many little artists in my kindergarten class. They love it when the paints come out – whether the paint is tempura or watercolour. The children had experimented making paper with the ECE and, instead of them taking the rough paper home unmarked, I thought they could paint on it with watercolours. Once the paint had dried, I mounted the artwork on some yellow card:
I liked how the yellow showed up the colours of their painting. With pleasure, I placed the paintings inside the frames:
I was pleased with the result. I helped the children gift wrap their work in tissue paper and they carried it home to give to their moms for Mother’s Day. I am sure this Kindergarten Art will grace many tables for years to come. And serve as a reminder to the children that they all have a little of the artist in them.