We like to celebrate fall by making crafts that remind us of the season’s colors, shapes and textures or using natural materials found on our outdoor hikes. Many of these projects are simple and need little advanced planning. Although I show samples of finished crafts, these activities are as much or more about the process, the outdoor adventure and collecting the materials. Plan a walk and bring a bag to hold natural items along the way. Making art with kids can lead to unexpected discoveries and detours. If you want perfection, craft your own piece alongside or after the kids are asleep.
This is a great rainy day project, if you have already collected some toilet paper and paper towel rolls and various small cardboard boxes.
Most of the cardboard is thin enough for a child to cut. I dismantled all the boxes and turned them inside out to hide the labels, but I think a colorful castle would be nice, too. See the little round tower on the corner? That is called a bartizan. We cut slits in a toilet paper roll to stick it onto the wall. The skinny white tower to the left is a garderobe….a latrine. It hangs over the outside wall and empties into the moat, or in this case, into the lake. The tall towers have merlons, (square blocks which defenders could hide behind,) and crenels, the spaces in between, for shooting at the enemy.
ThinkSpace, a major new exhibit exploring spatial thinking, opens at Providence Children’s Museum on November 10, 2012! This dynamic environment invites visitors to experiment with shape and space through engaging hands-on puzzles, challenges, building activities and more. Why spatial thinking? Robin Meisner, Director of Exhibits, Providence Children’s Museum shares the big idea behind the exhibit’s topic.
Spatial thinking is integral to everyday life and is necessary to navigate, explore and survive in the world. People think spatially all the time – when tying shoes, reading maps, finding the way to school or work, building snowmen, doing jigsaw puzzles, designing costumes, climbing trees or slicing pizza. Spatial thinkers are engineers planning bridges, pilots flying airplanes, doctors reading x-rays, electricians wiring houses, meteorologists predicting weather, bakers decorating cakes, geologists studying fossils and trapeze artists flying through the air. Kids are spatial thinkers, too!