Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Art Group

The themes for preschool/art group today were darkest to lightest, tallest to shortest, biggest to smallest and a bunch of descriptive words in between.  I tried to use a variation of verbiage like big, bigger and biggest, larger (or smaller) than, etc.

When the children arrived, we spent 45 minutes doing Montessori type activities.  I wasn't planning for it to take so long.  Then again, I didn't think about how the materials were new to Levi and Julia (Mr. Intensity was totally bored with my explanations and was quite distracting.)  There were 7 prepared activities from which they could choose.

Below you'll see that Levi was quite please with himself, building the (not so) pink tower.  The only mats that I own are being used by the doors; improvising I used towels to help define the space.
Mr. Intensity working with the number rods.  Over his left shoulder you'll see the dressing frames.  The boys totally ignored them.
Only one set of the knobbed cylinders was presented today.  Maybe next week there will be more.  Mr. Intensity is such an extrovert and so excited that other kids were here today that he had a hard time controlling himself and settling down.  Think: preschooler with too much caffeine, sugar, ADHD, pure boy, super excited with extra wiggles sprinkled on top!  All this to say that he tends to be rough with things anyway and with the extra kids here, I had to remind him SEVERAL times to be gentle and respect the materials.  When constructing his pink tower it toppled seconds after he completed it then was frustrated it fell.  It fell because he unknowingly knocked it down from his extra energy.  [At times I wanted to pinch his little head off!  Good thing he's my kid, or he probably wouldn't be invited back!  :)]

Below, you'll see Levi concentrating so well.  He worked very hard to assemble this cube.  Eventually I stepped in to help him so that he could experience the other stations. 

Julia stepped up to the (not yet painted) red rods and said, "oh, this one is much too hard!"  But she mastered it - as with the other activities.  She was a very diligent and patient worker.  I think she performed all the tasks without any coaxing or prodding.  
The matryoshka dolls were enjoyed by all the children. 
From the living room, we moved to the kitchen.  After showing the children a handful of candy corn, I asked about its shape and colors.  Then gave them Elmer's glue and a Q-tip to spread it.  With baby spoons they sprinkled yellow and orange lentils and a bit of white rice.  They all did rather well keeping the stray kernels on their trays. 
Julia's baby brother even got in on the action!  

After the candy corn collage, they were given other colors of lentils and rice with which to be creative.  (Look how intense one little boy is, using the glue...)The favorite activity: counting candy corns!  They were all given a treat bag with numbers 1-7 and 28 candy corns.  If they completed the task, they could eat 5 (and the rest after lunch.)  Over Levi's shoulder you can see the tray where I demonstrated how to "pair" the even numbers.
Then we worked on the concept of darkest to lightest with the homemade color box.  They zipped through it.
Last, but certainly not least, they painted! I bought the orange washable paint thinking about...well, you know, I have a boy.  When practicing last night with the paint I was sorely disappointed in its quality - it's very water-y and the color isn't very bright.  I won't buy that brand again.  I'll probably stick with the brand of white tempera (pictured).  I've not had a problem getting it out of his clothes as long as I wash the day of painting.

The children loved painting - and adding white to orange to make lighter orange.  
After art group, we ate lunch at the park.  The boys found the shovels on the patio and were ready to whack somebody dig.  It was only 101* today and will be 74* tonight - autumn is coming to Arizona -  Yay!


Julie said...

you are my hero...I know I say this a lot, but it is true. Thanks for sharing!

Megret said...

I love the lentil activity. Very cool. And I have that same brand of washable tempera. HATE it. The kids sponge painted apples yesterday onto paper trees, and now the red circles look more like raw sienna, crusty circles. Yuk. I will have to try that other brand you mentioned -- even if it means I have to put smocks on them first.

reprehriestless warillever said...

May we join your art group?

I'd be bringing along two very active boys too as well as their sisters.

MerrandaVK said...

Yes, can we join too? I love the candy acorn glue project. My kids would love it.

I am also ordering those dolls for Ethny for christmas. She's been eyeing them up in our Montessori catalogues for months now.

(oh and don't covet our weather just yet. I had to scrape frost off the van windows this morning)

Julie said...

With the exception of "bad guys" (we have those in our neck of the woods) - our door is open to anyone...anytime!

Come one, come all, y'all!

Amanda said...

You amaze me!

Xia said...

Hey, I like your counting with candy corn!

Anonymous said...

Great job! Quite the party planner you are!


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