Hand Print Monkeys

by Katy
There’s just something so cute about little kids’ hand prints. Here is a fun way to turn them into an easy art project.
First get some brown finger paint. I didn’t have brown, so I mixed red and green together to make brown.
I painted Charlie’s hand and pressed it onto a piece of white paper–this will make the body of the monkey. If your child has fisted hands because of a disability, go ahead and paint your own–you can do the body and then they can help with the next part.
Next, I had Charlie make a fist and I painted the side of his hand. We stamped this above each handprint on our paper (palm side). This will be the monkey’s head.
I then cut paws for each monkey out of beige paper. I cut out four for each monkey and I didn’t have a pattern or anything–I just did it real quick. Once the paint was dry, I put a dot of glue on the back of each and then put them at the end of the fingers. Every finger gets a paw except the middle one–that’s the tail!
The last step is to give each monkey a face. At this point Charlie was starting to melt down a little ,so I did the last one for him.
And there you have monkeys! If your child enjoys playing with paint, you can add green hand prints around the monkey to create a jungle.
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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.

Musical Instrument Kids Crafts

Music is a big part of our family from rocking out to Lady Gaga ( hey don’t judge me it calms my newborn!) to singing in church there is never a day that goes by without some music. Much of this comes from going to music class with my son from infancy where he got to explore singing, dancing and instruments. Here are some of our favorite musical instrument kids crafts .

Guitar

Drum

Flutes

Banjo

Tambourine

Sand Paper Cactus Craft

crafts for kids

I know I have already started getting ready for back to school but I am not ready to give up on the sun quite yet !  I was flirting with the idea of cleaning my art closet out while my son was at summer camp last week, and found a big piece of sand paper and this idea popped in my head.  Sand paper make such a perfect cactus and since you are finger painting this is a wonderful craft for multi-age groups too.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some paper, sand paper, crayons or markers, scissors, glue and green paint.
  2. Start by drawing a cactus on your sand paper.
  3. Using the green paint finger paint your cactus. Talk about textures, how it feels, does your child like the way it feels?
  4. Let dry. While it’s drying draw a sun with crayons or markers on your paper.
  5. Cut the cactus out when dry.
  6. Add glue.
  7. Glue the cactus on!

Books About 5 Senses

my five senses

My Five Senses Big Book by Aliki is a great non fiction book about the 5 senses for toddlers and preschoolers. It’s simple but informative with clear pictures to help support the text . The author uses common things to help teach about the 5 senses like ice cream for taste, feeling a soft bunny for touch and hearing sirens. I like that is explains that sense can be used alone or all together and that the gift senses give us is awareness about the world around us.

five senses

Green Start: The Five Senses by IKids is a sweet book that focuses on the senses we use throughout our day as we explore our home and nature. Although the text covers all 5 senses it is not discussed overtly as ” And when you smell this you are using your sense of smell…” it’s a great little book to share with a toddler or young preschooler not ready for the more fact based non fiction books.

Look, Listen, Taste, Touch, and Smell: Learning About Your Five Sensesby Pamela Hill Nettleton is a really great find. The book doesn’t separate the senses, instead the author explains all the ways the senses work in specific situations. My son was intrigued by the ideas of smores and kept telling me “I want to smell and taste some smores Mommy, please!” I liked how it explained the connection between the areas of our bodies we associated with the senses ( mouth, eyes, nose, skin and ears) and the brain. The author succeeds in making it accessible for young kids but not boring for older ones. Good Find!!

Texture Sorting { Touch & Feel City}

We had a blast making this Touch and Feel City! Young children learn with all their senses and when I can incorporate a sensory element into a craft my son suggested making I can’t wait to share it.  My son plays “City” all day with his Legos and when I asked him what he wanted to make for craft time he suggested making ” Daddy’s building” I looked in my craft closet to see what we could make with it and decided to use some felt, sandpaper, foil and foam and turn it into a texture lesson.This can also be used as a shape lesson!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a large piece of paper ( a brown grocery bag cut open and laid flat would be awesome), some construction paper, materials with different textures ( I am using sandpaper, felt, foam and foil) , scissors and glue. Also after we were done I regretted not having my son use crayons or markers to make clouds, perhaps a plane in the sky etc… so if you want to do that it should be the first step.
  2. Start by cutting the texture materials into small pieces.
  3. Cut the construction paper into various sized rectangles.
  4. Glue the buildings onto the larger paper.
  5. Glue the texture materials on as windows, as you do this explore how they feel talk about which ones is soft, rough, smooth and squishy. Ask your child to use their own words to describe the textures.
  6. Let dry.

Paper Plate Animal Crafts

Paper plates are a must have for any summer camp, preschool or even home craft supply closet. The endless possibilities of fun and educational crafts are well, endless. Here are some paper plate kids crafts we have done over the years. I hope that the extra plates from summer BBQ, church picnics and cookouts can be used to make something fun.

Paper Plate Tree Frogs

Paper Plate Pig

Paper Plate Jelly Fish

Paper Plate Tiger

Paper Plate Spider

Paper Plate Turkey

Paper Plate Crab

Paper Plate Tadpole