21 November 2009

Busy, busy, busy

T and I have been quite the busy bees lately. Since we got back from our short break, we've been constantly working on stuff! We are preparing for my upcoming craft fair, the Downtown Holiday Market, which is in 3 weeks. Crafting has been going at a fairly steady pace, though it will be slowed significantly when we leave for our Thanksgiving vacation on Tuesday. Meanwhile, I have to prepare for my upcoming Montessori weekend seminar, and T has class all day, every day this weekend. Of course, I've also been working on lessons for the classroom and have plans for little "love leaves" as Thanksgiving goodies for the children.

This week, I created 2 new lessons for the children. A corn painting lesson is on the shelves until Thanksgiving break, and I prepared a special rainy day activity for the Lunch Bunchers on Thursday.
Corn painting involves a printout of a corn image, (with individual kernels), qtips cut in half, a green coloured pencil and a yellow stamp pad. The children use the qtip to stamp little yellow circles into each of the kernels. Then they colour the leaves green. If desired, they can cut out the whole corn shape, which can then be posted on our landscape bulletin boards as though it's growing out of the ground.

For our rainy day activity, I made cinnamon clay for the children to make an aromatic garland for the classroom. I brought letter and leaf shaped cookie cutters and we spelled out "give thanks" with a few leaves for spacers. The children loved the activity (since we no longer have play dough out on the shelves) and it made the classroom smell delicious. Of course, the children took home the extra clay.

Cinnamon Clay Recipe

2 bottles ground cinnamon
1 bottle white school glue
1 cup applesauce
1 cup flour

In a large bowl, mix the applesauce and as much of the glue as you can dump out of the bottle. In a separate, smaller bowl, combine one and a half bottles of cinnamon with about half the cup of flour. This will help make it easier to mix into the applesauce/glue mixture. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet. The cinnamon will cause billowing dusty clouds if you add too much at once. When all the dry ingredients have been mixed in, if it is still sticky, add more flour. Flour a clean surface well and knead the dough. It should be approximately the same consistency as Crayola Model Magic, only heavier. Separate dough into balls for distribution to children and pat flat with the palm of your hand. Use cookie cutters to make shapes.

I made a test batch of letters which were slightly less than 0.25" thick. They were a little brittle, so with the children, we made our shapes 0.25" thick. They are drying over the weekend, hopefully they'll be done by Monday so we can string them up!

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