Melting Ice on Tissue Paper

January 15, 2013

Water Color Paper
Bleeding Tissue
Ice Cubes
Cup of Water
Paint Brush
Cookie Sheet

Choose a few sheets of bleeding tissue paper.  I am working with a cool theme, so I picked blues, greens and off white.  Your little one can help rip the tissue into pieces.  Any shape or size will work.  For some kiddos this might be enough fun for one sitting.  If so, you can store the ripped pieces for later.  If not, you can go right to the main event!

Place a piece of watercolor paper on a rimmed cookie sheet.  Set out a bowl of ice cubes, a bowl of warm water and a paintbrush.  Encourage your little one to place pieces of tissue on the watercolor paper.  Layered, separate, smooth, crumpled, it’s all good! 

Now see what your little decides to do!  My guy positioned the ice cubes, then started brushing them with the warm water.  The water helps them melt a bit faster, adds an interesting tactile temperature shift and creates puddles of color quicker than if only ice cubes are used.

Once he had his fill of brushing and melting, he picked off the pieces of soggy tissue.  This left a bit of color on his hands that washed off by evening.  Waiting till the tissue is dry before removing it will minimize the color on hands, though this project can get a little messy no matter what! 

Chalk and Oil Pastel Drawing

January 9, 2013

White Chalk
White Oil Pastel
Dark paper (blue or black)

Snowy landscapes inspired this simple exploration of texture and contrast.  Place a white piece of chalk, a white oil pastel and a few pieces of dark construction paper out.   Watch your little one draw a wintry mix, enjoying the combination or powdery chalk lines and smooth oil pastel smudges.

Gluing Buttons


Set out glue, buttons and paper. I opted to put out glue sticks for ease of application and immediate tackiness.   I had a bunch of white buttons (think snowflakes) to use, but any flat buttons would work just fine.   

You may want to work alongside your kiddo, sweeping glue onto your page, setting buttons down, moving them around, experiencing the thick gooey texture of the glue and the slight pull of the buttons as you reposition them on your page.  

New Year, New Plan!

I have been trying to do a creative experience everyday with my kids for a while now.  Simple, open ended explorations that are process focused.  Our house if full of wild action, so having a sensory activity ready to go can shift the mood, calm the kiddos and give me a moment to breath.

This year I am trying to brainstorm activities around themes.  The themes aren’t lessons or things I am hoping the kiddos will take from the projects.  This month we are starting with snow and ice, but I am not suggesting to them that we are making or doing something about snow and ice particularly.  The themes are 100% for me.  They challenge me to think out of the box, inspiring me to set out different material and try out new processes with them.

So here we go!  Two weeks of creating inspired by snow and ice  (despite having no sign of snow this winter in NYC)!