Purple Twig- Art Exploration for kids. A mom run small business in Los Angeles. Stop by to see the trials and tribulations.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Spring is Here

This is a great spring activity for children ages 2 to 15 and maybe even older depending on your teenager. They are basically homemade chia pets. You can put all kinds of seeds in. I used mainly cat grass seeds but you could put flower or herb seeds as well. 

This is what you will need.
1- sock
potting soil
buttons and pins 
a rubber band

Put just a handful of dirt in the bottom of the sock then add the seeds. That way the seeds will grow from the bottom of the sock which will be the top of the little buddies head. Then fill the sock with dirt about half way. The kids are loving getting their hands dirty.

When finished add a rubber band to the bottom or tie into a knot so that the dirt doesn't fall out. Add button to the sock for eyes, nose and mouth using the pins to keep the buttons on. You can either use the pins with the balls on the end or just flat head pins.

Look at this friendly bunch. These guys need plenty of sun and water. Water every day. 

After about a week they start to grow. It's such a great way for the kids to care for something and get a reward fairly quickly and they are funny. Sometimes the hair grows out of the face like a beard. Haircuts are also a good idea when they get too long. 

Happy Growing!!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Camp Flaming Arrow

Doing camps at the Purple Twig are rewarding in many ways. It helps families who's children are not in school, we get to come up with a more comprehensive theme and spend the whole day with the kids and financially it helps our studio in times that maybe be slow. The one issue I had was finding a way to get the kids outside experiencing the neighborhood. They can't just spend the entire days indoors. Outside play time is so important. Luckily living in Los Angeles we usually have the weather on our side and so we came up with some great solutions.
For Spring Break this year we came up with the idea of a day camp about a traditional  camp. The idea was to make tents, do bird watching, bug collecting, archery, go on hikes and picnics, along with each day having some reading time and drawing time. It turned out better than I ever expected. We all had a rewarding time.

DAY 1 
Each morning after doing some warm up drawings the kids settled into the tents for some story time.

We made these colorful arrows by drawing feathers on colored paper and hot gluing (I love the hot glue gun) them to dowel. The kids decorated the dowel with thin strips of tape. We offered the kids many sizes of colored tape so that they could make stripes. We added pencil erasers to the end for the arrow points.

After lunch we took the arrows to a park near us and did some archery by throwing our arrows through a wire hoop decorated with a cardboard center. The kids came up with a lot of other games themselves. It was such a wonderful way to get the kids to work together on the first day. 

On the 2nd day we started our birdwatching portion of camp. We made collaged birds starting with white card stock paper. After looking at images of birds the kids chose a bird or made up a bird and drew them onto the white paper. They colored them in and then added all kinds of ribbon and feathers and of course glitter.

We made binoculars from tp tubes and duct tape. The kids had a great time finding all kinds of uses for their binoculars.

In the afternoon, while waiting for our collaged birds to dry, we used printmaking to make postcards to send home. We used scratch foam for this process which is so simple to use. Ages 4 -7 all found this printing engaging. 

Here are the postcards ready to go to the mailbox. 

We all trekked to the mailbox to mail our cards home.

During lunch I placed the birds in trees and bushes around the neighborhood. We talked about where birds live and where we might look for them. After lunch we went on a bird watching excursion. the kids had to look for their birds hiding in the neighborhood. They used their binoculars which was amazing and some of the older kids who could read and write made check lists for each bird so they checked the birds off as they found them.

We all went on a hike through the neighborhood with flags the children had made that morning.

We hiked to a picnic lunch at the park in our tents.


After reading about and looking at all kinds of bugs each child made bugs on watercolor paper, beatles, centipedes, and a lot of butterflies.
Again during lunch we pinned the bugs to trees and placed them in bushes for the kids to find.

After we collected all the bugs the kids put them into a collection using a shoe box top. 

Each morning after our initial warm- up free drawing time the kids made badges for each task they accomplished each day. They drew images onto small pieces of cotton and we strung beads onto safety pins to add something special.