Gak Recipe

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This Gak Recipe (aka slime recipe) has been on my to-do list ever since reading about Amy's The Great Slime-Off on Child Central Station. Amy shares two different recipes: the first calls for liquid starch and the second calls for Borax. I looked all over town for liquid starch and it was nowhere to be found. Is it prohibited from the State of California? But the second … [Read more...]

Cardboard Box Challenge

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TinkerLab is one today! To help me celebrate a year of exploration, tinkering, creativity, and experimentation, I've invited some of my favorite arts and education bloggers to join me in today's Cardboard Box Challenge as a gift to each of YOU. My blogging journey was originally inspired by the fabulous Jean of The Artful Parent and Jen of Paint Cut Paste. And I'm absolutely … [Read more...]

Soap Making Experiments

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We made soap wrapped in hand-painted paper for Mother's Day! I've never made soap before, so this was a fun experiment for us all. First: Hand-painted paper... Materials liquid watercolors assorted paintbrushes pipettes a big sheet of watercolor paper to cover her work area small pieces of heavy, absorbent tissue paper that came with some packaging in the … [Read more...]

Glittery Cotton Ball Collage

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My very active almost 3-year old hopped off her bike just long enough to work on a collage. The weather has been so nice, and I can't really blame her. Materials Cardstock: 8.5 x 11, from a fat ream I picked up at the office supply store White glue in a jar Glitter Scissors Short-handled artist brushes Collage Materials: Cotton balls, tissue paper, pasta, … [Read more...]

Recycled Weaving Fence

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When I saw this awesome weaving installation on display at the Bay Area Discovery Museum I knew it was something that I wanted to recreate at home. If I were running a preschool I think I would have taken the time to build such a structure because it would be a stellar group project, but as the parent of one curious, yet fickle, preschooler I thought it might be prudent to … [Read more...]

Outdoor Water Painting Experiments

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My friend Diana sent me these amazing photos of her son (almost 2 1/2 at the time), experimenting with water painting. She offered him a couple containers of water and a paintbrush and gave him free reign to paint away. I love how he was able to take these simple materials and experiment with them in multiple ways. He's enjoying the process of painting while learning about the … [Read more...]

Flour Sifter

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We have a make-shift sensory tub that often makes its way into the middle of our kitchen where we conduct experiments, make "cakes and pies," and mess around with the feel of stuff. Some of the things we've filled it with are dry beans, oobleck, jello, vinegar and baking soda, and rice. I'm always on the lookout for neat-o objects that might challenge and delight my child, … [Read more...]

Drawing Shadows

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Today was an on-and-off sunny day, but in those brief moments of sunshine we squeezed in a quick little chalk drawing project that's a great way to help children look at things from a new perspective, which is a key ingredient in creative thinking. I talked to N about a plan to draw our shadows earlier in the day, and lamented that it was too cloudy to try it out. When … [Read more...]

Creative Challenge #5: Plastic Bottles

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Make something with Plastic Bottles In honor of Earth Day, I'd like to raise a little awareness toward the enormous amounts of plastic bottles used around the world, coupled with some thoughts on recycling and upcycling those bottles into creative products. My family is hooked on bubbly water, and while the number of bottles we go through each week is staggering, each of … [Read more...]

Simple Balloon Yo-Yo

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This springy balloon yo-yo is fun to play with, easy to make, and can be created with things that you may already have in the cupboard. It can also teach children a nice lesson in resourcefulness, helping them understand that toys can be invented from simple objects. In this day and age of toys overflowing from grocery shelves and toy baskets, this is always a welcome lesson in … [Read more...]