Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Let The Art Projects Begin!

The teacher in me is always brainstorming activities, songs, or projects that I can do with my child. He's only 20 months old though so there aren't really a ton of projects that he has been able to actually do up to this point. Songs, sure, we do lots of singing and listening to music. Ring Around The Rosie is his current favorite, but there is only so much two person RATR that mom can handle. Even mom needs a little variety. So I am increasingly excited that he has finally reached the age where we can do a little more than sing songs and read books. I'm going to post some of the projects and activities that we do. Most likely none of them will be completely novel ideas, but perhaps my spin on them may give you some good ideas  that you might try for your own family.

Jack has just started to color with crayons. Usually what we do is tape a piece of paper to the table and do some scribbling. I found a large roll of paper at Ikea that is so great because I can cut it to the exact size of his little table which prevents lots of crayon marks on the table.The tape is super helpful in preventing run away papers and potential frustration.  He loses interest in coloring pretty quickly and then generally move on to playing with the tape. Which led me to the discovery that he loves stickers! So instead of just coloring, sometimes we mix it in with putting stickers on the paper. The dollar bin at Target is a great place to find stickers.

Since my son is starting to say more and more words I decided to make him a little word book. I took pictures of familiar items around the house, shoes, a book, his animal blanket, Larry, as well as a picture of himself, Mom, and Dad. I tried to include pictures of things that he already could say so that this would be a book that he could "read" himself. I also left several blank pages at the back so we could add more pictures as he learned new words. Of course you could put pictures of items he doesn't yet say the words for, but I figured we have tons of "real" books in our house with plenty of unfamiliar words, that it'd be nice to have a book that was special because he'd already mastered the words.

Since I wanted to include him in making this book we colored small squares of paper together so that the pictures would have a decorative background. Then I glued the pictures on the squares. I'd say most 20 month olds could help with this part too. They could spread the glue on with a paintbrush or help pat the picture onto the page. This particular day mine had lost interest in this activity so I finished the gluing on my own.

Finally I punched holes in the pages and threaded yarn through to bind the book. There are many fancier ways that you can bind a book, but I wanted to keep it simple for this first attempt to see what his interest level would be in this book. It's not always the first book he pulls off the shelf, but when we do read the book he is really excited to see the familiar pictures and point to them while he "reads" the book aloud.

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