My son has been pretending he is knight for a few weeks. In all that time he’s been using a cutting board as his shield, it was high time we made him one! When we had a playdate scheduled with a friend who loves art and knights it was a done deal. Now you will notice that my directions and pictures don’t match perfectly, follow the directions because if I did this craft again I’d do a few things differently to make it easier . Oh and crafts while chatting to a girlfriend and holding a baby… just have extra things on hand in case you miss a step or 3.
- Gather your materials. You will need some cardboard, foil, colored and scotch tape, paint/crayons/markers, scissors, paper and a toilet paper roll.
- Start by cutting out your shield from the cardboard.
- Next cut the white paper so it fits into the middle of the cardboard. This is where your child will draw their coat of arms!
- Time to paint and color your shield. We started with colored pencils
- Then added paint.
- Next we taped them on the cardboard. DON”T Instead cover the whole shield with foil. Tape it on the back.
- Then add your white paper when it’s dry . Tape it on with colored tape ( painters tape works great).
- Cut a toilet paper roll in two and secure it with tape. This picture was taken 4 days after the craft was made . What was it I said about skipping steps while chatting, holding a baby and making crafts?
- Time to play – our boys played for 1.5 hours and amazingly no foil came off, ripped or otherwise needed repair.
Imagine You’re a Knight! (Imagine This!) by Meg Clibbon is a fantastic book for children interested in what being a knight is all about. There are so many great details and answers given that I am eager to read more in tis series. My son loves this book and not just because it answers his many questions about knights but also because it’s the type of book that you can open and close as time permits , reading a little or a lot and still enjoying it. I like the humor and illustrations by Lucy Clibbon. It’s a great choice for 4 and older. 3 year olds might find it to be too much.
My mom is in Ireland right now on business and staying in castles, nice eh? Well since telling my son that he has been pretending to be in a castle in Ireland too. So today we made one out of all different shapes. We couldn’t pass up the glitter either , although looking at my floor sorta wish I did. Getting down on all fours with a dust buster and a 34 week belly is well, not fun! Decide for yourself!
- Gather your materials. You will need 3 different colors of construction paper, scissors, glue, markers and glitter .
- Start by cutting out large rectangles and triangles , as well as some small squares for the castle. You can use any shapes you want but these were simple for me to cut out and simple for my son to use to build.
- Cut out some shapes to use as windows, doors and flags in a contrasting color.
- Invite your little castle builder to come and decorate the background. Clouds, flowers, whatever they choose. My son made rain, because I had shown him pictures of me in Ireland and it was raining, and he was making his castle in Ireland as well.
- Next add glue
- Add your main castle pieces. Remember to ask and talk about the shapes. Today my question was if he turned the shape around would it still be the same shape. He had to think about that for a second.
- Add your triangles.
- Add the small squares.
- Add more glue for the windows and doors.
- Add the contrasting shapes. My son didn’t want the flags, or all the shapes I cut so they went into my scrap bin.
- Next up glitter, add the glue first ( we took turns adding glue).
- Add the glitter. Immediately regret it when you watch your child rub the super fine glitter into their PJs, and hair. Send them onto the back porch to shake off.
- Let dry. I always let the glue dry before shaking the excess glitter off.
The Princess and the Pizza by Mary Jane and Herb Auch is really a cute re telling of the classic Princess and the Pea. They have modernized it and made it a little more feminist in the process, exactly my kind of book. The text is a little long for toddlers but my son sat through about half before wanting to go back and look at the illustration of the horse on the first page. The message is sweet, saying that a woman doesn’t need a man or marriage to attain her goals! Beware though it will make you crave pizza!
Princess Smartypants by Brenda Cole is the antithesis of the classic beautiful frail princess stories, but it still ends with happily ever after. Princess Smartypants does her own thing and doesn’t understand why her family is so obsessed with finding her a husband. She bends to their wishes but still does things her way. I think this is a great message about happiness and confidence for girls and balances out some of the other princess stories. She was happy just the way she is and didn’t need a spouse to feel complete.
The Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munsch is one of my very favorite books. Some parents have shared their dislike of Elizabeth’s outburst at the end calling Ronald a bum but I think not only is it justified, he treated her horribly, but people say things when they are angry and you can easily use it to teach your child about anger. I think it’s a wonderful story about a princess taking things into her own hands and saving herself and the prince! My kind of fairytale.