Category Archives: Art Play

Activities for September

September is here, and so is Autumn. In India, autumn is usually not taught as a season to students. But it should be, because just like the rest of the world, India experiences its version of autumn. Golden or brown leaves are usually a sign of autumn or fall. While we don’t often get to see autumn leaves in India, we do experience other changes, like the days become shorter and nights become longer. The days are sunny, but the sun’s rays are not as hot as they are in the summer.

Autumn in New York

Autumn in New York (Photo credit: blmiers2)

Weather in Autumn Activity:

I took a globe and positioned a flashlight on one half of the Earth. I asked Big A to place her hands on different parts of the globe, to tell me which felt hot and which part felt warm. Then, I took a ball and held it straight (not titled like the globe), and I placed the flashlight on one half of the ball. I asked her to tell me if there was a difference in the heat across the different parts of the ball. Except for the top and bottom, where the flashlight rays don’t hit directly, the rest of the ball will be of the same temperature.

We concluded that because the earth is tilted, areas that get direct heat feel hot and those that do not get direct heat feel warm, and this is why we have seasons. In September, India does not receive direct sunlight, hence the days are warm, and are shorter than nighttime.

Here’s a list of other activities I’ve planned for this month:

  1. Talk about the weather in September and decide what type of clothes to wear for the weather. Work with your child to place clothes for September at the front of the cupboard shelf. By doing this, children realize how clothes are designed for seasons. And when they grow big, they are likely to be fashion conscious and  will dress up for the season.
  2. If you have fashion magazines at home, show pictures of the Autumn/Fall collection and discuss the trends in fashion with your kids.
  3. Autumn begins with Janmashtmi celebrations. Tell your kids a story about Krishna and then show them how to make butter.
  4. September is also a month of harvest festivals – Onam in Kerala and Nuakhai in Orissa. Discuss the meaning of harvest, and why farmers celebrate the harvest festival.
  5. Ganesh Chaturthi is another big festival that comes in September this year. Newspapers are going to be filled with photographs of the Elephant God. Have your child skim through the papers each day and cut pictures of Ganesha and create a collage.
  6. Take a nature walk, collect some leaves and make leaf skeletons.
  7. Collect fallen leaves and flowers, trace their designs on paper, cut the paper drawings and thread them together to make a toran. You could also make a toran with real leaf and flowers, but it will stay fresh only for a few days.
  8. Download and print fall theme worksheet set 1 and worksheet set 2 and have kids fill them up.

If you have fun ideas to do with kids in September, please do share them.

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Observation Skills & Art with Leaves

Last evening when we went down for a stroll, Big A spotted leaves fallen on the ground.We spoke about why leaves fall on the ground and why some leaves are green and some brown. Then, we collected the leaves in a paper bag and brought them home with us.

At home, we spread the leaves on a newspaper. I arranged two small leaves on one side and bigger ones on the other side, and asked Big A to complete the groups that I had created. It didn’t strike her at first, that I had grouped them by size, so she began placing them randomly. So, I stopped her and asked her to tell me the sizes of the different leaves – we called them small, big and bigger. Once she understood the concept, she completed the groups by herself.

To take the concept of grouping a little further, next, I grouped leaves by the appearance of their blades – leaves with smooth blades and leaves with toothed blades. I showed her each type and then asked her to group the rest of the leaves accordingly. And then, we also grouped leaves by color. I wanted her to realize that objects have different characteristics – size, color, shape, texture to name a few, and we can create different groups based on these characteristics.

Later we used the leaves to make a little art piece :).

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Shapes, Colors & Art

Today’s activity draws inspiration from the Georgetown Elementary Art Blog about Murals. If you visit their site, you’ll see the amazing mural that students made. I loved the vibrant colors and loved that the entire piece was put together through teamwork!

I decided to do the same activity at home with A & A. I gave each a white sheet of paper and asked them to use a black crayon and draw different shapes all over the paper. When they were done drawing shapes, I showed them how to connect shapes together with lines. After our paper was filled with black outlines, I brought out four colors – red, blue, yellow and white.

Both of them began filling colors inside their shapes with their paintbrushes. After using each color a few times, they wanted new colors. I told them we only had four color bottles with us, but we could maybe try mixing two colors to see if we could create a new color. And so, the fun began, they learnt that:

  • red+white = pink
  • red+yellow = orange
  • blue + yellow = green
  • blue + red = purple

We added white to the colors to make different hues, so we managed to get light and dark green, light and dark purple and light and dark orange.

After the coloring was over, we let the paper dry. Later at night, I used black paint to redo the outlines around the shapes, since the little ones had colored over them. The next morning, we opened up two photo frames, and replaced the art in it with our own artwork. The kids were thrilled at seeing their artwork on the wall.

July

Do you display your kid’s artwork in your home? Do share your pictures with us.

Chalk Paint

I found this super fantastic chalk paint recipe on Pinterest and I had to try it. It is really simple to make and the ingredients can be found in your kitchen.

Chalk Paint Recipe

  • ¼ cup cornflour
  • ¼ cp water
  • Few drops of colour

Mix the ingredients in a bowl; I used acrylic paint, you can use food colour if you like and I guess water colour will also do.

I made 3 colour mixtures in different bowls and gave it to A&A. We have a black granite platform near the windows in each room, so they used that as their drawing board, and the fun began!
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Another weekend morning of fun for them and I got my “me” time :).
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