Puffy Paint Earth Day Craft

easy earth day craft for kids

My plan was to make Saturn and start teaching my son about space but he asked if he could make planet Earth so I grabbed the shaving cream and this easy Earth Day craft is what we ended up making. What a hit! It’s so simple even young toddlers ( provided they are past the eating everything stage) could do this with minimal adult help. Saturn will get made sometime soon , he had so much fun making our planet and we still got to talk and learn about space.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some shaving cream, white glue, green paint,scissors, a marker, blue paper, a spoon, and container or bowl.
  2. Start by mixing your paint. You will need 3 parts shaving cream to 1 part white glue, and green paint . Use as much green paint as you need to get the color you want.
  3. While they mix it up, draw a circle on your blue paper.
  4. Paint. It might get messy but it will definitely be fun! 
  5. My son preferred to scoop the paint on to his hand and slap it down. 
  6. While the paint was drying my son used the extra paint to make another painting !
  7. Let dry and cut out. The paint will dry puffy !

Books About Space !

Playdough Earth

playdoh earth
This post from contributing writer Katy is great  for toddlers and preschoolers of any ability but especially geared towards children who are resistant to textures, either because of having special needs or simply being resistant to new sensations. Having a purpose to make something like the earth makes an exercise in textures more authentic instead of simply touching something squishy. I love it!
______________________________________________________________________
Before I do any craft with Charlie, I get all of my supplies ready to go. For this project I rolled three large balls of blue craft clay and then several small balls of green craft clay.Play-doh Earths
I placed a ball of blue clay in Charlie hands and then took a piece of green and helped him smash it into the blue. play-doh earth
We did this several times for each ball creating something that looks a lot like Earth.play doh earth
Charlie, like many kids with special needs, can be resistant to new textures.  He did not like the feel of the clay, but we kept at it for a as long as we could. I had wanted to create a total of four Earths, but we stopped at three in order to prevent a meltdown.  It’s good to push your child, but not so far that they become resistant to all new activities.
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Katy is a mom of one who loves art, mystery novels, and anything involving peanut butter–she blogs about raising her little miracle at Bird on the Street.

Recycled Book Order Beads!

recycled bead necklace 004

If your child is school age or if you are lucky enough to get book orders at your preschool or childcare center this craft is for you!  Of course you can also use newspaper , but the book orders are so colorful!  So grab whatever you have,  and make a pretty necklace, or bracelet for Earth Day tomorrow.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some colorful newspaper or Scholastic Book Order fliers, some ribbon, some elastic bands, white glue and scissors.recycled beads
  2. Roll your paper starting from the open ends so when you glue the end it’s one piece not a bunch of pages fanning out, I made two one this way one the other and the other one was  big huge flop . Glue the edge.recycled beads
  3. Add elastics to keep it in place and let dry- mine only took 2 hours to dry, I would expect 2-4 for a good bond. recycled beads
  4. Cut into beads. recycled beads
  5. Thread it onto your ribbon.  If you really want to make a cool bracelet cut those elastics you already used , tie them together and strong the beads on to make an elastic bracelet. I would only do this with an older child though, as it could snap easily, but if they are old enough it would be rad!recycled beads
  6. Voila a recycled bead necklace! recycled bead necklace

Like this idea but have a toddler? Try our  Toilet roll necklace instead!

Earth Day Muffins!

snacks for earth day These earth day muffins were so fun to make I decided that even if they turned gray while baking I’d post this. Luckily they stayed green and the blueberries are supposed to look like water, I think they do right? My son had a blast, we ended up skipping nap he was having so much fun with a bowl of flour while they baked and he even exclaimed, they “Kinda look like the earth mama.” I take it as a success!

  1. Gather your materials. The recipe (see below)  I used  is from the May 2008 edition of Everyday Food ( I cut it in half and used whole wheat flour) . You will also need blueberries, and blue and yellow food coloring. I was out of green but I would still suggest blue and yellow as it give your more control over how it mixes with the brownish color if you are using whole wheat flour. earth day muffins
  2. When baking with my son I measure out the dry and wet first and let him help from there. There is no right or wrong way of doing this it’s just what I do.
  3. Mix the dry. earth day muffins
  4. Mix the wet- apparently it smelled yummy.earth day muffins 002
  5. Mix together . earth day muffins
  6. Add the food coloring. earth day muffins earth day muffins
  7. Add in the blueberries. earth day muffins
  8. Spoon into the muffin tin. earth day muffins
  9. Grab some extra flour , measuring cups and let your little one play. He played for a long time with plain flour. Yes it was a mess but fun normally is. earth day muffins earth day muffins
  10. Celebrate cause they look enough like earths that it was well worth it! Enjoy .earth day muffins

    earth day muffins

Recipe

¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, melted.

2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)

2 large eggs

½ cup whole milk

½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

¾ cup granulated sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

Mix dry, mix wet. Add wet to dry, add blueberries ( 1 cup) . Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes.

Source: May 2008 edition of Everyday Food by Martha Stewart

Letter of The Week – Earth Day

Earth e !

Earth Day Craft

Earth Day is coming up so to extend our learning about the earth into our regular letter of the week craft we made an earth e today. My son loves this paint roller and for a craft like this where you cover over crayon it was the perfect painting tool.  I couldn’t narrow down my books to just 3 today, they range from toddler to school age so there is something for everyone.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some white construction paper ( or paper plate), another sheet for the backing, a blue crayon, a black marker, green ( or yellow and blue) paint,scissors , glue,  a dish and a paint brush or roller. Earth Day Craft
  2. Start by writing a lowercase e on your white paper. If you are me fail miserably, try again on the other side ( yes this is a picture of my better e). Still mess it up. Earth Day Craft
  3. Grab a paper plate because that was your last sheet of white construction paper, make a stencil and trace it on the paper plate. Earth Day Craft
  4. Give your child the blue crayon and explain that this e is the Earth ( show them pictures of the earth if need be to explain how the blue is the ocean and the green is the land).  Have them draw some ocean- make sure they press hard. Earth Day Craft
  5. Time to pour paint Earth Day Craft
  6. Now mix it. I prefer to do this than use the regular green if possible. It’s some extra fun and extra learning. Earth Day Craft
  7. Roll it on! Earth Day Craft
  8. Let dry and cut out.  earth day craft
  9. Glue on your backing paper. Earth Day Craft

For more letter of the week crafts check out my eBook Alphabet Crafts !  From A-Z you will be learning and creating with your child .

Books

in the garden

In the Gardenby Leslie Bockol is a little board book all about growing your own fruits and vegetables in your garden. It is simple and although it’s listed for 3-6 year olds I would read it to 1-3 year olds. It identifies a number of fruits and vegetables and completes each page with ” I pick it and eat it!” my son loved the repetition and quickly completed each page for me while I was reading it to him. I think it’s a perfect book for toddlers and young preschoolers to introduce gardening to them.

The Whole Green World

The Whole Green World by Tony Johnston was an unexpected hit with my son.  Today reading it he learned that you can’t judge a book by it’s cover, he saw the book in our pile to read and wasn’t taken with it, but I suggested maybe just reading the first page and he was hooked. The book is really about appreciating the whole world, from the view point of a little girl who grabs some seeds, plants them , waters them and savors the beauty all around her. My son loved the sing song text and the ultra detailed illustrations by Elisa Kleven. Which my son would study with every turn of the page asking me ” Mommy which bird, which book, which cake is your favorite?” making reference to the illustrations . It was a wonderful book to snuggle up with !

Herman and Marguerite

Herman and Marguerite: An Earth Story by Jay O’Callahan is a funny story with interesting and sometimes unexpected illustrations. The story is about a worm who has heard about the orchard above and wants to see it, but the sun is threatening and he is saved by a caterpillar! They develop a friendship and because of it the orchard that was once barren starts  attracting  animals again.  It’s not all easy along the way and the worm gets to return the favor of saving the caterpillar when she gets stuck between rocks on her way to spin her chrysalis. When she emerges as a butterfly her worm friend is there and so is a beautiful flowering apple orchard!   My son liked this book , I found it somewhat disjointed and what we both thought was odd was the random inclusion of photos of the author throughout the book. “Who is that weird guy Mama?” I wasn’t sure how to answer that one. Still he sat for the whole thing, and learned just how important worms are. It won’t be renewed over and over from the library though.

EcoMazes

EcoMazes by Roxie Munro is a new book that was sent to me by the publisher for review. The idea of this book is to showcase different ecosystems like wetlands, the tundra, desert and more through both a maze and search and find game. This book is not designed for preschoolers although my son loves it. We do the maze together as that is far too complicated for him, but he loves to find the animals on each page and has learned a lot about them too. What is awesome for older children ( 7-10) is that along with an answer key to the maze and pictures there is a full page of information about each ecosystem in the back of the book. This doesn’t talk down to the reader and gives great information using sophisticated vocabulary. I am excited to see how this book’s use changes over time in my home.