Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Something a bit fishy

So it's all a bit fishy and here is our underwater story box.

With our fishy theme we've been reading some fishy, underwater books too. 

I love all of these books, because they're not only great stories with lovely illustrations but they work on lots of different levels, which is great for reading to a one year old and three year old. 

Sharing a shell has lovely pictures and a great rhyming text whilst Ten friendly fish is a tough card page books, with raised little fish in holes - perfect for little fingers, with one fish disappearing on each page and concluding with a lovely pop up picture on the last page.  The rainbow fish has lovely pictures and is a really nice story to read. 

Where's that fish is possibly my favourite fishy book.  It's a board book with lots of brightly coloured pictures and then each page there is a hole which shows a bit of the picture of the next page that could be part of the fish but turns out to be something completely different - my one year just loves the bright pictures and holes whilst my three old loves the surprise that each time she turns the page the bit that looked like it was part of the fish turns out to be something else.

This storybox is something I've been wanting to try for a while, but have been trying to think of ways to include little chick in the making process.  So we started off with a shoe box and I cut out a rectangle on the front and a wide slot on the top using a stanley knife.  I then set little chick away with painting the box with an old tester pot of blue emulsion paint (it's great on cardboard as it doesn't flake off like poster paint).

We then used an old bit of clear plastic packaging and little chick glued it with pva glue onto the backside of the front panel forming the front window.  She also glued an extra bit of cardboard I had cut out to make a cave at the back.  We then raided our bits and pieces tin and found some ribbons and blue plastic for underwater plants and a little box that looked like it could be a teasure chest.  I then tied some little fish we have onto cotton threads and attached them to some kebab sticks.  Then we were ready for story time.

We did a few different stories of adventures finding treasure, finding a big bad fish in the cave, making new friends and getting caught in a net (a satsuma bag tied onto a chopstick).  I have to say that although my storytelling left a lot to be desired my three year old absolutely loved it and was enthralled.  When we'd finished I left everything out for her and later I spotted her happily telling her own little stories with the box. 

Monday, 18 July 2011

Painting Jack's Beanstalk

We've recently been really enjoying Nick Sharratt and Stephen Tucker's Jack and the Beanstalk.  Since discovering this series a few months ago, they have been a big hit with little chick and we keep coming back to them.  The illustrations are great, the flaps pretty robust and the lovely rhyming text stands up really well to being read aloud lots and lots and lots of times!

Linking in with this last time we were reading it in about April time, my husband did some planting runner bean seeds with little chick.  She absolutely loves helping in the garden and bean seeds are great because they're perfect for little hands to pick out and plant in the soil, not too small compared to some seeds.

Well they didn't quite grow overnight but I'm starting to feel the magic of the growing beanstalk as they have been growing quite literally by the day, taller and taller and are now just about the height of our garage roof!

They look so fabulous I thought it would be great to get little chick having a go at painting a picture of them.

I've recently been struggling a bit with painting with her, she just isn't into making mess (I know I shouldn't complain!), but given a blank sheet of paper and some paints she either paints the whole sheet one colour or carefully dabs 2 or 3 small dots on the page and says done.  So we've been having a go at ways to try and encourage creative art without making it a closed activity.  So I set up the easel with some paints and positioned it so she could clearly see the beans and suggested she paint what she saw and I have to say this seemed to work for her and she was really pleased with her work!

And what better way to finish off painting than to wash all the painty clothes in your outdoor wash tub!

I think we now need to go and sit at the bottom our beanstalks and read the story there, looking up imagining our beanstalks going up and up into the world beyond the clouds.

I've linked up at Book Sharing Monday

Saturday, 9 July 2011

Making Footprints

I really love big art and with the sunny weather what better way than to take the art outside.  We have a huge roll of paper (a faulty roll from hubbie's old work), so I cut off a big chunk and laid it out on the grass with some baking trays for the paint.

We then set about squeezing lots of paint into the trays, little chick loved doing this and was really concentrating doing it.

We then set about squishing and smearing and squelching the paint around the tray and then walking across the paper, little shoeshine also got involved with her tiny feet and mummy was told which colour she was allowed to use and so we created our own work of footprint art.

Once little chick had finished with the paper it was then time for body art painting.

Our painting is now on display in our dining room.  We've got a big blank wall in there and I hope to regularly do a big art family picture to display, am looking forward to doing the next one already!
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