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 ISSUE 05   •   13  AUGUST 2006  
   This week's theme: ladybugs

Contents

1. Editorial: Easy craft for tiny fingers
2. MAKE: spangly sun bugs
3. MAKE: bold ladybug vegie prints
4. MAKE: a pet ladybug
5. 
MORE: ladybug ideas


1. Editorial: Easy craft for tiny fingers

Hello and welcome to kids craft weekly!

This week's 'ladybug' issue focuses on crafts that can be enjoyed by children as young as two – or even younger depending on your little one's temperament.

When my daughter was a toddler I could hardly wait for us to do fun crafty things together. However she showed absolutely no interest in craft until she was almost two and even then she prefered to screw lids onto the tubes of paint than do any of the activities I had elaborately planned.

The experience taught me that crafting with young kids is more often about the process than the outcome. Toddlers love to feel feel the texture of the paper, ponder the behaviour of runny paint and consider what it may taste like. But actually paint the froggy green? Well...

That's why the best craft projects for young kids are hands on and breathtakingly simple.

If the end product doesn't even vaguely resemble what you set out to achieve it doesn't matter – your little one hasn't failed and neither have you. In fact, you've been really successful at giving a budding scientist the opportunity to carry out terribly important experiments!

That said, I hope you have great fun with this week's activities. If you'd like more easy ideas for young 'uns I've added a list of easy craft ideas for tiny little fingers to the resources section of the website.

As always, please feel free to get in touch and let me know how you get on.


Happy crafting and see you next week!


Amber Carvan
editor@kidscraftweekly.com


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2. MAKE: spangly sun bugs

This activity is an absolute beauty for young kids because it doesn't require sophisticated cutting skills or precision gluing, but it does involve scissors and lots of sticky stuff!  Make sure you have plenty of dot stickers and be prepared for the possibility that your little one won't want to stop until there are no supplies left!

You will need

• red or orange cellophane
clear sticky contact
• glitter and or sequins
scissors
string

1. Cut cellophane into small pieces – it doesn't have to be sophisticated, just chop away.




2. Cut contact into long rectangles (app. 30 x 15 cms) and fold in half. Then peel back the backing on half of the rectangle and start sticking the pieces of cellophane to the sticky contact.



3. 
When cellophane covers most of the contact, toss on a small amount of glitter (or some sequins), then peel back the remainder of the contact and carefully fold the two sides together.



4. Cut around edges to form an oval or ladybug shape and then stick on the black dots.



5. Punch a hole in the top of each ladybug and tie on a length of string. Then hang the ladybugs up against a window where they'll look fabulous and spangly when the sun gets behind them!




3. MAKE: bold ladybug vegie prints

These striking prints can make great wrapping paper so hold on to your little one's handiwork for special occasions. Oh and in case you hadn't guessed, this one can be a little messy so you might want to take suitable precautions!

You will need

• a potato
a carrot
red acrylic paint
black acrylic paint
paper

1. Chop a potato in half, lengthways, to form an oval-shaped print. Then cut 5 cm off the end of a long thin carrot to make a dot print.
Squeeze paint onto a tray and use the vegetables to make ladybug prints.



Next time round I think we'll have
one tray for the red paint and potato and another tray for the black paint and carrot tip!




4. MAKE: a pet ladybug

Pet rock projects are among my favourite craft activities ever. If you have time to burn you can stretch this project across an entire day. For example, you can go for a long walk in search of the perfect rock, spend time cleaning it in some warm soapy water then putting it out to dry. Then there's the painting, waiting, naming, housing – the possibilities are limitless!

You will need

• a small, smooth, oval shaped rock (or shell)
an empty match box
red acrylic paint
black acrylic paint
felt
black marker
brushes
glue



You could do this activity in many different ways, depending on what resources you have available.

We did it by painting a pippi shell red and dotting it with a cotton bud. We then covered the exterior of a matchbox by gluing on a length of coloured felt.

For added fanciness we lined the inside of the box and cut out a small felt ladybug to glue on the top. Ella added ladybug dots with a black marker.

Ella's ladybug has creatively been named Lady and has been carefully attended to for several days now. Already we've had to make Lady a warm blanket and a pillow. I'm just thankful that ladybugs can't wear socks as I'm sure I'd be knitting her a pair right now!


5. More ladybug ideas

•  make a ladybug number chart
•  create little ladybug pictures using a red thumb print and black felt tip pen
•  construct a beetle boat for your pet ladybug
•  cook up some cupcakes and decorate them with pink icing and chocolate dots
•  paint a ladybug landscape using watercolours

For more ideas read my article on how to get great mileage from a weekly theme.


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