One roll of easel paper, five nature-themed outdoor crafts
One roll of GLTC's sturdy, white easel paper can lead to hours of fun spent in the garden enjoying nature-themed crafts. It's perfect for use with pencils, crayons, markers, chalk, poster paints or watercolours. While it's designed to sit upon an art easel, it's also great to take outside on a sunny day and roll out across a path or patch of grass and get creative.
With the summer holidays coming up in a matter of weeks - or having already started in some areas of Scotland - here are five crafts that you can plan for your children to get them out of the house and running around outdoors instead.
A MIXED-MATERIAL DRAWING/COLLAGE
Children love to draw pictures of the perfect house. A big front door, large windows, puffs of smoke coming from a tall chimney, and a beautiful garden with swaying trees. But how about instead of drawing flowers, plants and trees, you use the real thing instead? Every garden or yard has bits of fallen greenery scattered about - especially with the recent windy weather - so collect them up and use them to add a little more texture and real-life charm to your child's drawings.
Leaf printing is another brilliant craft to enjoy outdoors - no worrying about paint drips or drops on the kitchen table or floor. Pick up any fallen leaves, either from your garden or out on a walk, and apply a good amount of paint to a leaf before pressing it down on your roll of paper. Carry on until your paper is covered with a rainbow of leaf imprints.
A NATURE-THEMED SCAVENGER HUNT
How about a nature-themed scavenger hunt? Draw small plate-sized circles on your roll of paper and, around the outside, write the words of all the things that you want your child (or children) to locate within the garden and bring back to place on the paper. It could be specific leaves, petals, wildflowers, blades of grass, pebbles, berries, pine cones, feathers ... whatever's available within your garden that you're okay with your children looking for or picking up. If your garden's quite sparse, you could always hide a few things in advance.
How many different greens can you see? Or browns, or greys, depending upon where you live, obviously. Roll out a long stretch of easel paper and ask your child to draw or paint what they can see. It's a great opportunity to point out exactly how many variations of a similar colour that we're surrounded by. And also a brilliant way to think about scale. How tall is that tree? Is it taller than the house? And how high are the sun flowers? Do they come up to the top of the door?
Finishing with a really fun project ... shadow tracing. Of course, you need the sun in the sky for this one, which shouldn't be tricky during the summer months but you never know in the UK. Pick a handful of objects of different sizes and shapes and position them on the roll of paper so the sun casts a shadow and your child has enough room to trace the outline. It's a good one to repeat at different times of the day so your child can make the connection between the location of the sun and how much of a shadow it casts.
Do you have any nature-themed outdoor crafts that you'd like to add to our list?
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