Are literacy skills and technology really enemies? Could screens really be the death of imaginative play and creative thinking? Technology can be a time suck, even an addiction for young, smushy brains (or forty year old brains, for that matter.) Using some creative resources, such as these coding books, can ensure that you child stays on top of the technology curve while growing their own literacy and problem solving skills.
If you’ve been to the Kitchen Table Classroom before you know that books are pretty much my answer to everything. A problem, a question, an idea; just go read about it. I’m a researcher at heart. Despite the amazing resources available online I still love a real book. Books feel solid, permanent, and trustworthy. Combining book learning with the futuristic skill of coding feels like the best of both worlds to me!
Art doesn’t have to be sophisticated or fancy or require advanced technical skill to be totally worth making. I love introducing kids to art processes that are spontaneous and somewhat random in their results. One, because everyone is successful and who doesn’t love that? And two, because it’s fun. This paper marbling definitely fits the bill.
So we’ve got an art process that is fun, and easy, and also a sure thing success wise. The other bonus is this one requires no fancy materials. Really, this paper marbling doesn’t require any art supplies at all. Everything you need will be right in your pantry!
Is teaching art at home intimidating? What if I told you that simply offering a selection of art supplies (and books, always books) to you kids and letting them explore was enough?
Although there is a time for formal art instruction I don’t feel childhood is that time. Childhood is the perfect time for kids to revel in the joy of making just for the sake of making. Allowing kids time and freedom to explore will naturally build their skills and confidence. Here are a few simple supplies you can keep handy to facilitate that joyful making, even if you don’t consider yourself an artist!
If you’ve got a short list of art supplies oil to keep available for your kiddos oil pastels should make the cut. They’re cheap, crazy vibrant, and can be used in dozens of ways! This technique, however, is a new one on my radar.
Oil pastels rate so high because they are brighter than crayons, blend easier, and because of that “non drying” thing a little messier. Coloring with oil pastels can be a little like painting. As colors build up and layer they begin to mix together, much like paint in a mixing tray. Here we’re going to add one more little ingredient to really bring the paint magic to this project!
Cook, wash, teach, taxi, host, clean up, aaaaand repeat. That sequence sums up the rhythm of most of my days. I’m a stay at home mom teaching our four kids at home. I certainly do not need one more thing added to my “to-do” list, right? So why in the world would I freak out and start a “mom blog?”
I spend more than a couple of hours each week crafting examples for my blog, writing posts, and creating pretty images that Pinterest will hopefully love. My blog is the one thing on my “list” that doesn’t really have to be done. It’s completely optional, my choice. Why struggle??
When I was in college I had a special crockpot just for wax. A little electric skillet was specially reserved for heating little glass jars of colored wax. I no longer have such specialty gear as the time I devote to such projects no longer warrants it. But I do remember that hot wax is a fun medium. Melted crayon is the perfect way to introduce your kids to the fun of encaustic painting.
Say it with me…encaustic painting. Do you feel smarter and more cultured already? Encaustic painting is just painting with wax. But sometimes those fun, new words can make something as simple as using melted crayon to make art feel extra special.
Have you heard of dichroic glass? It’s a colorful, artsy type of fused glass often used to make pendants and fancy schmancy jewelry you might find in an art gallery gift shop. It’s good lookin’ stuff.
True dichroic glass is created by layering glass and metal oxides and firing them in a glass kiln, sometimes multiple times. The iridescent glass that results is beautiful but the process is out of reach for most at home crafters.
Using a few kid friendly (and budget friendly) craft supplies we managed to create a fused glass look alike that is accessible to everyone!
When a stranger or acquaintance asks one of my kids if they are on summer break yet I can count on my kid to break out the puppy dog eyes. They will most likely respond with a pitiful “We don’t get a summer break. We’re homeschoolers.” Ha. Technically you could say we do year round school.
It’s true, we do not take the entire summer off. But it’s not as rough as those little people would have you believe. Once we get in our summer groove it’s easy stuff. School is just a art of what they do each week, on their own time.