Today’s activity is a great example of how to add purpose and comprehension to an art project. It’s illustrates exactly, how to turn fun into learning, how to engage and excite a child’s natural curiosity and how to prepare a child so that an activity is meaningful to them. I hope you enjoy this post as much as we did!
Mondays and Wednesdays I choose one activity we did today from the Reaching Roses curriculum and share our experiences (starring my twin babies)
This week’s Theme: Ocean Animals
Activity Description: Oceanic Wall Mural (Sensory): Get a large canvas or large piece of poster paper as the basis for your mural. Gather bubble wrap (different sized bubbles would be great) and cut them into manageable pieces (suitable for your baby). Paint the bubble wrap blue (use different shades if desired) and stamp it onto the poster paper to make the ocean back ground. Then glue/stick/draw on ocean animals and plants to complete the mural.
This Activity’s Main Area of Development: Creative Development
Specific Skill: Making a print
O&M’s Ages (at the time of posting this): 24 months + 1 week
This activity had two parts (because we had to let the paint dry before we could add plants and ocean animals)
Part 1 – Making a print
1. I briefly explained that we were going to make a big picture of the ocean to put up on our wall. It’s a new concept so they weren’t quite sure but they understood that it involves water. So I explained to them that we were going to make the bubbles in the water for our picture.
2. I demonstrated how to paint the bubble wrap and press it onto the mural. Then it was their turn!
3. Once the background was dry, I added seaweed and coral and tried to explain what they are. Then we set that aside to dry.
Part 2 – Completing the mural
4. The first part of our warm up involved looking at a plush globe we have (Hugg-A-Planet). I just tried to convey that the coloured parts are where people live and the blue parts are the ocean where the fish live.
5. For the second part of the warm up, we watched the BBC’s Blue Planet (not the whole thing, I fast forwarded to relevant parts). I tried to convey that the ocean is an enormous body of water that many, many fish live in. I paused the documentary several times to further explain concepts (like showing the seaweed and the coral and how the smaller fish like to live/eat/hide there and the ocean animals). They were really excited saying things like, “Look, yellow fish. Wow, really big!”
6. Now that they had a pretty good understanding of the ocean and a lot of practice with the vocabulary (ocean animals), we started to complete our mural. I showed them the stickers we had and asked them to name each one. I talked to them about space on the paper (a concept they are beginning to understand) – because we didn’t want all the stickers in one little area.
7. Then I let them loose!
…fine motor skills at work
…..spacing and placing the stickers
……the final product
We had a great time doing this activity together! They were so excited to show it to Mr. Y when he got home; talking all about it! They really learned a lot!