TinkerLab http://tinkerlab.com Creative Experiments for Mini Makers Tue, 03 May 2016 23:45:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 Drawing Prompt: Fill a Frame http://tinkerlab.com/drawing-prompt-fill-a-frame/ http://tinkerlab.com/drawing-prompt-fill-a-frame/#respond Wed, 13 Apr 2016 23:02:21 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=22173 It’s no secret that my family likes to draw, and we’re always playing with ways to make drawing more entertaining. We often do this “fill a frame” activity in our sketchbooks while traveling or while waiting for food in restaurants, but it’s also easy to set up anywhere. All you need is paper and drawing […]

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Easy and fun art prompt for kids: Color in frames

It’s no secret that my family likes to draw, and we’re always playing with ways to make drawing more entertaining. We often do this “fill a frame” activity in our sketchbooks while traveling or while waiting for food in restaurants, but it’s also easy to set up anywhere. All you need is paper and drawing supplies.

This project falls under the Creative Table Project, a series of simple art and science prompts that encourage creative thinking skills and experimentation.

In a nutshell, you set up the materials and then invite your child to create.

Drawing Prompt: Fill a Frame

Easy and fun art prompt for kids: Color in hand-drawn frames

Supplies

See our full list of recommended supplies for more kid-friendly materials. Note: This list includes affiliate links

Paper: We used Neenah Exact Index (card stock). I love this versatile, heavy-weight paper

Black Pen: I enjoyed using a Sharpie for this project

Crayons, colored pencils, or markers: I set up Waldorf “Lyra” colored pencils and my daughter chose to use Crayola washable markers

The Set-up

  1. Pre-draw frames on a sheet of paper
  2. Set the frames up next to a container of markers or crayons
  3. Invite your child to create
  4. Feel free to co-create or use your free time to work on your own project

Easy and fun art prompt for kids: Color in frames

I set ours up with colored pencils, and my daughter swapped them for her favorite markers. With set-ups like these, follow your child’s interests. If they have an idea that’s different from what you had in mind, as long as it’s safe, it’s 100% okay!

Related to this project, my friend Agnes recently launched a company called Plaeful, and they make erasable, washable frame decals that you can stick right up on your wall. We have one in our busy hallway, and I’m always catching my kids filling it in with designs, stories, and color.

Plaeful washable frame from Hello Wonderful

Check out Plaeful.

Plaeful washable frame from Hello Wonderful

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Art Prompt: How to Make an Animal Mask out of Paper http://tinkerlab.com/art-prompt-how-to-make-an-animal-mask-out-of-paper/ http://tinkerlab.com/art-prompt-how-to-make-an-animal-mask-out-of-paper/#respond Wed, 13 Apr 2016 22:14:00 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=22165 I recently set up this mask-making activity up for my five-year old and loved seeing how she added details and personality to the animal mask template. This project falls under the Creative Table Project, a series of simple art and science prompts that encourage creative thinking skills and experimentation. In a nutshell, you set up […]

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How to make an animal mask out of paper

I recently set up this mask-making activity up for my five-year old and loved seeing how she added details and personality to the animal mask template. This project falls under the Creative Table Project, a series of simple art and science prompts that encourage creative thinking skills and experimentation.

In a nutshell, you set up the materials and then invite your child to create.

How to Make an Animal Mask out of PaperHow to make an animal mask out of paper

Supplies

See our full list of recommended supplies for more kid-friendly materials. Note: This list includes affiliate links

Card stock or other heavy paper

Child scissors: blunt, pointed, left-handed

Hole Punch

Elastic String or yarn/ribbon

Markers or Crayons: We use Crayola here

The Set-up

There are plenty of ways to set this up.

Older children: If your child is old enough to use a paper punch and cut with scissors, here’s your set-up:

  1. Fold your paper in half.
  2. Pre-draw the shape of half of an animal face the paper. Be sure the center of the face is along the folded edge.
  3. Set the paper up on a table with markers and scissors.
  4. Invite your child to cut the mask out of the paper and then design and create an animal.
  5. Punch holes for the elastic, tie the elastic on, and wear!

Younger children: If you have a toddler or preschooler who isn’t ready for scissors yet, try this:

  1. Fold your paper in half.
  2. Pre-draw the shape of half of an animal face the paper. Be sure the center of the face is along the folded edge.
  3. Cut the mask out of the paper
  4. Place the mask and markers or crayons on the table and invite your child to design and create
  5. Punch holes for the elastic, tie the elastic on, and wear!

How to make an animal mask out of paper

For more easy art prompts and set-ups like this, visit The Creative Table Project.

And if you try this project or invent a creative prompt of your own, join me on Instagram with the hashtags: #tinkerlab and #creativetable

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Shivers! The Pirate Who’s Afraid of EVERYTHING: An Interview with the Authors http://tinkerlab.com/shivers-the-pirate-whos-afraid-of-everything-an-interview-with-the-authors/ http://tinkerlab.com/shivers-the-pirate-whos-afraid-of-everything-an-interview-with-the-authors/#respond Tue, 12 Apr 2016 17:36:58 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=22146 I was recently introduced to a brand new chapter book series called Shivers! The Pirate who’s Afraid of EVERYTHING (affiliate). It’s the hilarious story of young pirate Shivers who’s, as you’ve probably guessed, afraid of everything. He lives with his phobias and pet goldfish on a beached pirate ship, and is joined for epic high-seas hijinks by his […]

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shivers the pirate who's afraid of everything author interview

I was recently introduced to a brand new chapter book series called Shivers! The Pirate who’s Afraid of EVERYTHING (affiliate). It’s the hilarious story of young pirate Shivers who’s, as you’ve probably guessed, afraid of everything. He lives with his phobias and pet goldfish on a beached pirate ship, and is joined for epic high-seas hijinks by his very brave best friend, Margo.

My girls, ages 5 and 7, love the books and we came up with the idea to interview the authors, Annabeth Bondor-Stone and Connor White. The girls came up with 18 questions and Annabeth and Connor were kind enough to answer them ALL! It’s fun to get a peak into an author’s mind, so if you read Shivers! with your child, you’ll want to follow up by reading this interview with them. Bonus: if you’re teaching a unit to go along with the books, the Shivers! website offers awesome free teaching guides, story prompts, and activity sheets.

I love my kids’ questions (I know, I know, as their mom I’m programmed to adore them), and the real joy is reading the author’s insightful and funny answers.

Without further ado, on to the interview!

Shivers the Pirate: An Interview with the Authors

annabeth bondor-stone and connor white

How long did it take you to write each book?

The first book took us about two years to write, but that’s because we didn’t know we were writers yet. We had other jobs and we had never written a book before. Now that we’ve practiced, each book takes about a year to write. Then it takes another year for our illustrator to draw all the pictures so the whole process takes about two years.

Which of the Shivers books do you like better?

Annabeth likes the first book better because it introduced Shivers to the world for the first time. And Connor likes the second book better because it has a hot dog eating contest! But we’re both really excited about the third book, it’s got a lot of poodles in it.

Have you written any other books?

No, this is the first book we’ve ever written. Before Shivers, Annabeth had written lots of plays and a movie script. And Connor once wrote a grocery list!

Where do you live?

In Los Angeles, California between the sushi restaurant and the taco shop.

annabeth and connor school event

Annabeth and Connor at a live event.

How did you choose your illustrator? 

Our publisher found our illustrator, Anthony Holden. Anthony drew some sample sketches of Shivers and Margo and we knew immediately that he shared our sense of humor and could bring Shivers to life in a way that no one else could. Just like Shivers was the first book we’d ever written, it was the first book Anthony had ever illustrated.

shivers the pirate who's afraid of everything

How did you come up with all of the hilarious things? Like the squid ink on chapter 5 and skipping chapter 13?

In order to come up with hilarious things, you have to get pretty silly. If we’re not feeling funny one day, we’ll put a pizza on our heads like a giant floppy hat, so at least we look funny. And that’s a pretty good start.

Also, comedy is about surprise so we wanted to give you something you wouldn’t expect from the chapter numbers, which are usually a pretty unsurprising part of a book.

Do you think all the great ideas in the world are already taken?

Sometimes it feels that way. But there are always more great ideas. Just the other day, we thought about inventing Break’N’Bake Bacon Cakes, which aren’t very healthy but they sound delicious.

Did you have any arguments while writing the books? 

We never argue while we’re writing but we definitely disagree sometimes! If Annabeth likes one idea and Connor likes another, we throw out both ideas and come up with something brand new that makes us both happy. And if we really get stuck we find it useful to take our pug for a walk.

shivers the pirate who's afraid of everything

Connor and Annabeth at a school book reading event

Does Margo have a nickname?

No, but we’re taking suggestions.

Why is Margo’s dad introduced but not involved in the story?

We like that Shivers and Margo have to solve their problems on their own so we don’t usually have a lot of parental supervision in the books. But we thought it was important to give you an idea of Margo’s background, and how she has always liked going on adventures with her dad, Police Chief Clomps’n’Stomps.

Was the Shivers series fun and exciting to write? 

Shivers is so much fun to write! We love writing about his crazy adventures but we also love writing about the regular details of his life, like what normal everyday things fill him with terror. Like a toaster. That thing will pop up when you least expect it.

Connor White recording audio book for Shivers! the pirate

Connor White recording audio book for Shivers! the pirate

Do you like this interview so far?

So far… WE LOVE IT!

What’s Shiver’s favorite object in the world?

His bunny slippers. They’re soft and cuddly, plus they protect him from one of his greatest fears: his own toenails.

About how many hours a day did you spend writing these books?

We try to write for three hours every day but sometimes that includes long walks, snacking, chatting, and stuffing our faces into pillows.

hivers the pirate who's afraid of everything author interview school event

Did you ever get bored while writing?

We never get bored while writing but sometimes we get frustrated. When we’re stuck, we like to think of writing as solving a big puzzle instead of waiting for an answer.

Do you get writer’s block and how do you handle it?

Definitely! We think that writer’s block comes from a fear that your writing won’t be perfect right away. So we try to face that fear by allowing ourselves to write a “bad version” of whatever we’re working on. We also look for inspiration from the outside world by going to museums or reading great books. Also, there’s snacking. Did we mention snacking?

Can you cross your eyes?

Yes! And we can dot our T’s!

Have you ever been interviewed by a 5 and 7 year old?

Now that we’ve reached the end of this interview, we can officially say yes.

If you’d like to learn more about the authors behind Shivers!, check out this video:

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How to Make Melted Crayon Art http://tinkerlab.com/how-to-make-melted-crayon-art/ http://tinkerlab.com/how-to-make-melted-crayon-art/#comments Tue, 12 Apr 2016 06:00:33 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=22136 Today I’m sharing how to make melted crayon art. This fun STEAM project combines the art of drawing with the reaction of crayons melting on a warm griddle. Scroll down to watch a video of the process in action. Supplies This list contains affiliate links Hot Plate: We use Cool Touch Electric Griddle Crayons: We like Crayola, […]

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How to make melted crayon art

Today I’m sharing how to make melted crayon art. This fun STEAM project combines the art of drawing with the reaction of crayons melting on a warm griddle.

Scroll down to watch a video of the process in action.

How to make melted crayon art

Supplies

This list contains affiliate links

Hot Plate: We use Cool Touch Electric Griddle
Crayons: We like Crayola, especially when they’re free from a restaurant, but you could try any crayon.
Aluminum Foil: Use 2 layers of regular foil (in case it rips) or one layer of heavy duty foil.
Paper Towels: To clean the surface between layers

How to make melted crayon art  with a griddle

Steps

  1. Before you turn the griddle on, cover it with aluminum foil.
  2. Tape the foil to areas of the plate that do not heat up. This will keep the foil from sliding.
  3. Turn the burner on to about 200 degrees, or just warm enough to melt the crayons (but not so hot that you scorch yourself!).
  4. Draw on the foil with crayons. They will melt!
  5. Peel the crayon paper back as needed.
  6. Make a print by placing a sheet of card stock or other heavy paper on the melted crayon.
  7. Wipe the foil clean and start all over again.
  8. Be safe! Use caution with hot burners.

How to make melted crayon art  with a hot plate

Watch the Video

Join us

Try this project and tag your work on Instagram with #tinkerlab and #tinkerlabmeltedcrayon

More Projects Like This

If you enjoyed this activity, check out my book, TinkerLab: A Hands-on Guide for Little Inventors, for more art, science, and tinkering experiments for kids.

Find me on Social Media

Instagram 
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Pinterest 

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9 Inspiring Mood Board Examples http://tinkerlab.com/9-inspiring-mood-board-examples/ http://tinkerlab.com/9-inspiring-mood-board-examples/#respond Tue, 29 Mar 2016 00:24:34 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=22078 Yesterday I shared how to create a mood board that inspires creative energy, and today I have 9 inspiring mood board examples that I know you’re going to love. If you’re an artist, designer, creative parent, or aspiring maker, these ideas are sure to get your creative juices flowing. I’ll add links so that you […]

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Yesterday I shared how to create a mood board that inspires creative energy, and today I have 9 inspiring mood board examples that I know you’re going to love. If you’re an artist, designer, creative parent, or aspiring maker, these ideas are sure to get your creative juices flowing. I’ll add links so that you can scoot off and see more from each of these artists and designers.

Inspiring Mood Board Examples for artists, designers, and wannabe makers.

 

For more tinkering spaces inspiration, you don’t want to miss the Tinkering Spaces series.

Take a look…

Dinner Ware Mood Board Inspiration

Note: This post contains affiliate links

Dinnerware Mood Board Inspiration from Bernice K. via Anthropologie

Mood Board Inspiration from Inspired by This

A different mood board for each project from Inspired by This via Glitter Guide.

Wall sized Inspiration Board

Wall-sized Inspiration Board via Apartment Therapy

Cassie Byrnes Textile design Mood Board Inspiration

Textile and Surface Design Moodboard from Cassie Byrns via The Design Files

Pattern Design Mood Board from Rebecca Atwood

Pattern Design Mood Board from Rebecca Atwood via The Every Girl

color palette texture mood board

Color Palette and Texture Mood Board from Brabbu

LIsa Congdon Studio Inspiration Board

Cork Board Inspiration from Portland artist Lisa Congdon

Iron Mesh Mood Board

Make an Iron Mesh Mood Board made with a Grid Wall, spotted on Planete Deco

Helle Jorgensen Mood Board Inspiration

Natural materials inspiration from Helle Jorgensen via The Design Files. Helle’s page of collections is inspiring to anyone attracted to ephemera.

For more tinkering spaces inspiration, you don’t want to miss the Tinkering Spaces series.

Get Supplies for your own Mood Board

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How to Make a Mood Board that Inspires Creative Energy http://tinkerlab.com/how-to-make-a-mood-board-that-inspires-creative-energy/ http://tinkerlab.com/how-to-make-a-mood-board-that-inspires-creative-energy/#comments Mon, 28 Mar 2016 02:44:59 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=21962 Are you interested in surrounding yourself with images that inspire more art-making? Could you use some ideas on how to make a mood board? Here are five tips that are sure to help inspire more creative energy. This article contains affiliate links. 1. Begin: Start with a board. This could be a cork board, magnetic […]

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how to create a mood board that inspires creative energy

Are you interested in surrounding yourself with images that inspire more art-making? Could you use some ideas on how to make a mood board? Here are five tips that are sure to help inspire more creative energy.

This article contains affiliate links.

1. Begin: Start with a board.

This could be a cork board, magnetic board, canvas frame, or a blank wall. It’s entirely up to you.

I prefer to use a magnetic board because the magnets allow me to preserve the integrity of the collected objects and treasures (no hole pins or tape tears!). I used two of the Spontan magnetic boards from IKEA (shown here). For magnets, my favorites are Mighties (Amazon) and Mighty Magnets (Container Store). Use caution with mini magnets around small children.

2. Collect Images and Objects

Gather images that inspire you. These can be magazine clippings, doodles, photographs, fabric swatches, paint chips, quotes, and found objects. I’ll include a list of things you can collect for your board (below) and as a printable. It will inspire you!

3. Arrange it Artfully

Arrange the images and objects. Line them up in a grid or overlap them artfully. This step will reflect your personality.

4. Put it to Work

Your mood board won’t be worth a dime if you hide it behind a door or inside a closet. It needs to be somewhere where you’ll see it frequently, preferably close to where your creative work happens.

Before sketching or while dreaming up new ideas, the mood board is a wonderful tool for centering your creative ideas. It will remind you of color choices, important words, or patterns that you want to incorporate into your work.

5. Update it Periodically

Over time we change and grow, and similarly your mood board should reflect your new ideas and inspiration. You might enjoy adding objects and images to it as you find them, or maybe you take time to change and refresh the board ever month.

I keep a manilla file that’s filled with interesting tidbits and ephemera that strike my fancy. I like to go through this file periodically and pull things out that grab my current interest. A fresh board keeps the positive energy flowing. I like to frequent a rad ephemera and used book sale that’s held in the same complex as my studio, which is where I found the cool map of Butte Lake (below).

I always have my eye out for things that hold meaning for me. Some of my new discoveries are glittery unicorn stickers, shiny gold printing paper with bumblebees, and smooth pieces of dried tempera paint.

how to make a moodboard with ephemeraHow to make a moodboard with fabric swatches

What to include on your mood board

What to Include on your Mood Board

  • Drawings
  • Your Own Art
  • Art from Other Artists
  • Magazine Clippings
  • Fabric Swatches
  • Wrapping Paper
  • Children’s Art
  • Inspiring Quotes
  • Library cards
  • Pages from old books
  • Printouts from your computer
  • Paint Chips
  • Buttons
  • Ribbon
  • Washi Tape
  • Photocopies
  • Sewing Patters
  • Photocopies from Books
  • Newspaper clippings
  • Maps
  • Postcards
  • Grocery Lists
  • Wallpaper Samples
  • Photo Booth Pictures
  • Interesting Envelope Patterns
  • Greeting Cards
  • Mail
  • Pages from Art Museum Catalogs

Print this image:

Ideas on what to include on your mood board

How to make a moodboard

My Palo Alto, CA studio is my happy place to make art, tinker with my kids, run my business, and host workshops. Check out the TinkerLab Event Page for details on our fun upcoming workshops and events.

moodboard in art studio

If you’d like to get inspired by creative workspaces for kids and adults, you’ll want to check out our Tinkering Spaces Series.
tour tinkering spaces

 

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A Fairy Tale | a Book Illustrated by Rebecca Jordan-Glum http://tinkerlab.com/a-fairy-tale-rebecca-jordan-glum/ http://tinkerlab.com/a-fairy-tale-rebecca-jordan-glum/#comments Fri, 19 Feb 2016 05:52:20 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=21817 Today’s spotlight goes to one of my oldest and dearest friends, Rebecca Jordan-Glum and her gorgeous, debut illustrated children’s book, Mom’s Choice Award Gold Honoree, A Fairy Tale (affiliate). Rebecca and I met on the first day of second grade under the wise supervision of our teacher, Kateri Sullivan. Our friendship was off to a rocky […]

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Today’s spotlight goes to one of my oldest and dearest friends, Rebecca Jordan-Glum and her gorgeous, debut illustrated children’s book, Mom’s Choice Award Gold Honoree, A Fairy Tale (affiliate).

rebecca jordan-glum and rachelle doorley

Rebecca and I met on the first day of second grade under the wise supervision of our teacher, Kateri Sullivan. Our friendship was off to a rocky start over a misunderstanding that was quickly resolved (sorry again, Rebecca), and we have been friends ever since! Phew.

Our teacher was a wonderful, creative woman who taught us how to make things like latch-hook rugs and encouraged us to paint along with Bob Ross. I would truly not know a lick about Bob Ross and his happy little trees if it wasn’t for our teacher. We even, gasp, illustrated our own books in her class.

And here we are, on this poetic occasion, to celebrate Rebecca’s ongoing journey as a maker and book illustrator.

a fairy tale book cover

My five year old says of the book: “I like the pictures. Good drawings!” And I have to agree. As you can see, the colors and richness of the painting is stunning and quite sophisticated.A Fairy Tale Book | Illustrated by Rebecca Jordan-Glum

I’m happy to be giving away one copy of the book via Instagram. You can see the post here or follow me on Instagram at TinkerLab.

To enter the contest, simply leave a comment on the Instagram post and tag a friend who enjoys kids literature, and a winner will be chosen at random on Sunday, 2/21 at 5 pm PT. U.S. entries only, please.

More Book Reviews on TinkerLab

18 Picture Books about Art and Making

The Art Of Tinkering – Book Review

The Year’s Best Art and Creativity Books for Kids

12 Creative Books from our Family Bookshelf

This Book was a Tree – Book Review

The Artful Parent – Book Review and a Project

Make and Takes for Kids – Book Review

Exploralab by the Exploratorium, Book Review

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Spring Activities for Kids http://tinkerlab.com/spring-activities-for-kids/ http://tinkerlab.com/spring-activities-for-kids/#comments Thu, 18 Feb 2016 21:02:15 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=21805 I’ve mined the TinkerLab archives for some of our very favorite spring activities for kids. These projects, crafts, and activities will help get children outside and into the fresh air, while celebrating the earth through a variety of lenses. Enjoy! Indoor (or outdoor) Crafts How to Make a Bunny Garland Spring Sink Mat Prints Indoor Winter […]

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I’ve mined the TinkerLab archives for some of our very favorite spring activities for kids. These projects, crafts, and activities will help get children outside and into the fresh air, while celebrating the earth through a variety of lenses.

Enjoy!

So many great ideas! Spring activities for kids.

Indoor (or outdoor) Crafts

Outdoor Games

Get outside! Spring Activities for Kids.

Outdoor Arts and Crafts

Garden

 

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You Rock Valentines | Handmade, no-candy, eco-friendly, kids Valentines http://tinkerlab.com/you-rock-valentines-handmade-no-candy-eco-friendly-kids-valentines/ http://tinkerlab.com/you-rock-valentines-handmade-no-candy-eco-friendly-kids-valentines/#comments Fri, 12 Feb 2016 17:31:03 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=21748 Make this easy and fun “You Rock” Valentine’s Day card from your rock collection. Today I’m joined by my childhood friend and communication strategist, Tenaya Wallace, who is sharing her eco-friendly pet rock Valentines, and her unique sense of humor. Welcome Tenaya! When my son was three I learned the importance of unique Valentines. Xan attended the […]

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Make this easy and fun “You Rock” Valentine’s Day card from your rock collection.

Today I’m joined by my childhood friend and communication strategist, Tenaya Wallace, who is sharing her eco-friendly pet rock Valentines, and her unique sense of humor. Welcome Tenaya!

U Rock Valentine's Day from Tenaya Hart

When my son was three I learned the importance of unique Valentines. Xan attended the most parent-involved co-op in the hippest hood in America (seriously, it was in Forbes) and we sent him to school with store-bought cards from the local CVS pharmacy. I think they were Sponge Bob-themed.

you rock valentine

What we received back, from every single kid, were hand-made Valentines, including a painted rock, that we still have. From that point on I made sure to never be outdone by these crafty moms of Silver Lake. But this year I ran out of ideas. My husband joked, “why don’t you paint rocks” and we laughed at the reminder of our store-bought ways.

The kids and I turned to Pinterest, searching “DIY no candy kids Valentines” (because candy is as passé as pre-fab cards). There were super-cute ideas but all involved little plastic toys and since I am 1) unemployed and don’t have spare change for plastic toys, 2) working under a tight deadline and don’t have time to order said toys and 3) a former environmental activist who should despise plastic toys, I decided to put in a search for “pet rocks.”

The results where mostly pictures of smooth round stones painted to look like sleeping cats, but there was one photo of a ragged little rock with googlie eyes glued on. The kids loved it. We were making pet rock Valentines rock googly eyes

My son collects rocks and keeps them in a box that doubles as an end table. He is possessive of his rocks, picked up on camping trips or walks around the block. But he saw wisdom in paring down his collection and actually got excited about using some of them for this year’s Valentines. Score for mom who has been trying to get rid of those rocks for years.

Make Pet Valentines with Rocks and Googly Eyes!

Step 1: Collect Rocks

We selected 38 rocks for Xan’s class (yes, 38…but that is another story) and 26 for my daughter’s. We washed them and set them in the sun to dry. The next day I took a quick trip to Jo-Ann’s Fabrics and spent $4 on googly eyes, which was more than I needed but I decided to get both the small eyes and the really small eyes just to get crazy.

When the kids got home from school I put out the rocks and eyes. They each selected rocks they liked and placed the eyes where they wanted them. I was shocked at how good they were at transforming little nuggets of nothing into personality-filled friends by just placing eyes in a certain place. This part of the process really let them be creative and made the project their own.

Step 2: Glue Down Googly Eyes

Glue Eyes to Rocks for Valentine's Day Cards: U Rock!

I glued the eyes on, because no mom needs to take their kid to urgent care for googlie eyes crazy-glued to fingers. The crazy glue worked like a charm on both porous and smooth rocks.

pet rocks

Because I am poor and lazy and a former environmentalist, I suggested to the kids that instead of putting the rocks on notecards, we could cut up cardboard boxes from the recycling bin. They loved the idea and thought I was a brilliant environmentalist, not poor or lazy in the least. My son even went out to our blue bin pull boxes and my daughter helped cut them up. They liked the idea of each card being different for each different rock. My only issue was that now some of the Silver Lake moms are going to know that my kids eat Honey Nut Cheerios and frozen pizza, but whatever.

Step 3: Attach to Cards

Valentine Cards with Rocks

Next I hot glued the rock to the cardboard. That way it will stay for now but can easily be pulled off later to keep as a pet forever. I did this step because again, no need for urgent care, but older kids who can be trusted with glue guns could totally do this on their own.

When I went to JoAnn’s I looked for stamp that said “You Rock” but they didn’t have one. I didn’t want to print “You Rock” on paper, because that started to defeat the eco-ness of the project and I didn’t want to argue with the kids about writing the cute catch-phrase 64 times. Once I glued the rock on the cardboard I realized they could just write “U” above it with the rock under. My daughter added an exclamation point with a heart on the bottom for added effect. Easy peasy.

Step 4: Write U *Rock*!

U Rock Valentine Card

So now we have 64 pet rocks and they are so fricking cute that I kind of want to keep them all. But we won’t. I will, however, be adding googly eyes and crazy glue to my camping kit so that whenever we are out in nature the kids can make some brand new eco-friendly friends. And I won’t be worried that my kids don’t have the coolest Valentines in town.

U Rock Valentine's Day Card

You Rock ValentinesEasy You Rock Valentine cards

More Valentine’s Day Ideas for Kids

30 Valentine Activities for Kids

Handmade Valentine’s Day Card: The Amazing All-in-one Envelope

Deconstructed Valentines for Toddlers

Self-serve Valentines Buffet

Heart Sewing Cards


Tenaya HartTo learn more about Tenaya, you can find her at Tenaya Speaks.

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Children must be taught how to think, not what to think. http://tinkerlab.com/children-must-be-taught-how-to-think-not-what-to-think/ http://tinkerlab.com/children-must-be-taught-how-to-think-not-what-to-think/#comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 21:12:22 +0000 http://tinkerlab.com/?p=21571 Children must be taught how to think, not what to think. -Margaret Mead I love this quote, don’t you? It reminds me of the old tale about how you can lead a horse to water but you can’t teach it to drink. Today I’m sharing a short roundup of some of my favorite TinkerLab posts […]

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Children must be taught how to think, not what to think. Margaret Mead

Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.

-Margaret Mead

I love this quote, don’t you? It reminds me of the old tale about how you can lead a horse to water but you can’t teach it to drink. Today I’m sharing a short roundup of some of my favorite TinkerLab posts that talk about how we can encourage children to think for themselves, follow their own interests, and explore the ideas that inspire their curiosities.

Enjoy!

Rachelle

Eight Ways to Follow a Child’s Curiosities

Four Easy Steps to Follow a Child’s Interests

Documenting your child’s passions

How to be the “Guide on the Side”

Parents Reflect on What Art Education Means to Them

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