Monthly Archives: August 2020

Saving Summer in a Bottle, A Fun and Easy Art Activity for Creative Kids

Do you and your children save summer treasures—shells and driftwood from the beach, pinecones from a hike in the woods, a special rock, or a perfectly preserved dragonfly? Sometimes we put those items in bottles to remind us of summer fun on a cold day in January.

Today you’ll learn to draw bottles! You’ll learn 2 tricks you can use to draw any shape bottle you might use to save summer treasures. It’s so easy even younger children will catch on quickly. Then you can draw or print out pictures of treasures to put in your bottles.

Then . . . in the Variations part of this post you’ll use your imagination to draw fantastic bottles that can capture even the most fantastic summer memories! Like the special smell of hotdogs and hamburgers sizzling on the grill, the fizzy feel of cold soda hitting your tongue, rainbows lighting up the sky after a summer storm, birds song as the sun comes up, or peddling your bicycle through cool evening breezes that smell of honeysuckle!!

Let’s get started, but wait . . .Don’t miss the 2 sections at the end of this post that show how this art activity can:

  • 5 ways this art activity can contribute to your children’s mental, physical, and social development
  • Help your children learn more about God: What does God want us to remember?

You’ll need a few

Supplies:

  • Bottles and vases of various shapes and sizes
  • Pencils and erasers
  • Crayons, markers, etc. for adding color if you wish
  • Paper to draw on

That’s it. Now we can get started!

Directions

The Looking part—very important in art!

  1. Look down at the top of your bottle or these photos. Notice the shape is a circle
  2. Do the same thing with the bottom of the bottle—also a circle
  3. If you could cut your bottle off at any level and looked down at it—again, all up and down, you’d see a circle
  4. This is important to see, because many people who try to draw a cylinder (which is what a bottle is) forget those circles and draw a straight line across, especially for the bottom edge.
  5. Now look at what happens to those circles as you begin to turn the bottle away.  What do the circles become?  YES, ovals
  6. Notice they don’t ever become straight lines or a football shape with pointy ends!

The Drawing Part—even the simplest bottle or vase has some ins and outs, but it’s still easy to draw, using the following 2 tricks: ovals and a central, straight line or axis. Here’s what you do:

  1. Draw an oval for the top of your bottle
  2. Lightly sketch a straight center line down from the middle of that oval to where you think the bottom of your bottle should be.
  3. Draw another oval at the bottom with the vertical line going through its middle. Pay attention to whether the bottom oval should be the same size as the top opening or is smaller or larger. Draw your bottom oval to match the relative size you see
  4. Now move up and down your vertical line, lightly sketching ovals wherever you see a change in size.
  5. Now connect your ovals with curving in, curving out, or straight lines depending on what you see on the bottle’s sides.
  6. Finally erase your center line and all but the top and bottom ovals
  7. Here’s another type of bottle to draw and fill with with drawings or photos of summer treasures!
  8. Add color and Enjoy!

Hints:

Don’t erase the bottom or top ovals, because we’re drawing glass bottles. If you were drawing a non-see-through container, you’d also erase the back of your bottom oval.

Variations:

Here’s where you can let your imagination go and draw fantastic bottles to hold fantastic treasures!

  1. Turn your paper so it’s vertical or what we call portrait orientation
  2. Starting at the top draw an oval of any size you like
  3. Lightly sketch your center line down the length of your paper and draw another oval of any size at the bottom.
  4. Next, up and down the center line draw more ovals of different sizes—some wide, some small—lots of variety
  5. Connect your ovals on the sides with some curving-in lines, some curving-out lines, and some straight lines. Whatever you’d like to make your very own fantastic bottle!!
  6. Now fill them with pictures or drawings of special memories of your summer.
  •      How do you draw a special smell or sound? Perhaps draw the flower, food, or bird and draw someone sniffing or listening.
  •      How do you draw a rough or soft texture? Find some sandpaper, smooth cloth, or even sand or small pebbles and glue these down to give the feeling of roughness or smoothness.
  •      I’m sure you can come up with even more creative ways to show your memories.

5 ways this art activity can contribute to your children’s mental, physical, and social development:

  1. Using pencils and crayons, etc. helps children develop fine motor skills.
  2. This art activity helps develop visual/spatial skills and how to understand and use visual   information—important in learning to interpret photos, graphs, maps, etc.
  3. The opportunities to make choices in this activity enhance problem-solving skills.
  4. Discussing their choices of things to put in their bottles and why aids in vocabulary and conversational skills.
  5. Creating fantastic bottles and how to illustrate a smell or a feeling encourages creative and imaginative thinking

This art activity can help your children learn more about God:

When I visit the beach I always come home with shells, drift wood, and beach glass. Why do I save treasures from the beach? Because when I feel the ridges of the shells, the velvety softness of the driftwood worn smooth by sand and water, or see the colorful sparkle of the beach glass, it brings back the memory of that special time.

Have your children hold a pinecone or other treasure they have saved. Ask them to describe how it feels, smells, looks. Then ask what they remember about when and where they found the treasure and how they felt at that time.

While summer memories are special, God tells us it’s even more important to remember how He has cared for us in the past and the blessings He gives us each day.   

     “Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced”  Psalm 105: 5 NIV

     “Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits—who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”  Psalm 103:2-5 NIV

The Lord knows that just as shells remind us of the beach, things that engage our senses also help us remember His care. In the Old Testament, He commanded the Israelites to celebrate Passover, (Deuteronomy 16:1) wear phylacteries, and sometimes build memorials of stones, because things they could touch and taste and see helped them remember God’s deliverance and promises so they could trust Him in the present. verses

Now we have the Lord’s Supper and baptism, also using everyday items we can feel and smell and taste to do in remembrance of Jesus’ sacrifice (1 Corinthians 11:24). We can use our voices to sing praises to God and our eyes and ears to take in God’s word. We might wear a cross or make a colorful bracelet to remind us of God’s love.

All these remind us of God’s grace in Jesus who died for us and of our heavenly Father’s continuing love that provides for our daily needs. Keeping God’s deliverances and promises fresh in our memories, keeps our faith and trust in Him fresh in the present.

An Activity to Remember God’s Loving Care:

Take one of the bottles you gathered for this activity (maybe decorate it as I did with ribbon) and try one or both of the following activities:

  1. Draw or find photos of times when you saw how God cared for your family. Perhaps keeping you safe in a storm while camping, seeing a sunset that reminded you all of God’s creativity, or a neighbor finding your dog when it ran away. Roll these up and tie with a ribbon or fold and put in the bottle.
  2. In your Bible and find and write out promises God has made to care for you, such as Deuteronomy 31: 8 when He tells us He’ll never leave us or forsake us. Decorate these with pictures if you wish, and add these to the bottle also.

Now when someone in the family is feeling down or is worried, they can take out one of the papers and remember how God has cared for your family in the past or be reminded of His promises and be refreshed to trust God today.

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Molly wasn’t interested in these bottles until I filled one with cheerios and dog kibble. Then she decided they were worth a second and third and fourth look! And then a GOBBLE!

Molly and I hope to see you right back soon for Another Fun and Easy Art Activity for Creative Kids!

 

Painting with Frozen Paint, A Fun and Easy Art Activity for Creative Kids

You and your children will enjoy painting with frozen paint on a hot summer day. Paint popsicles are fun for everyone and can lead to discussions about the water cycle God created to give us water, and how Jesus used water to teach something very important about Himself.

You’ll need a little advance preparation to freeze the paint, but once that’s done, dress in old clothes, grab some big pieces of paper, and head outside for fun and discovery!

Don’t miss the 2 sections at the end of this lesson that show how this art activity can:

  • Help your children in other areas of learning:
  • Help point your children to God:

Supplies

  • Tempera paint in assorted colors
  • Small paper cups or old ice cube trays in which to make the paint popsicles
  • Craft sticks or plastic forks or knives
  • Large sheets of somewhat heavy paper, such as rolls of shelf or craft paper
  • Large rocks or other weights to hold the paper flat

Hints for Clean Up:

  • If you plan to paint on a deck, patio, or outdoors table, an old plastic tablecloth will protect from stains and speed cleanup
  • A large plastic container such as an old dish tub is helpful to hold the paint popsicles until you’re done and ready to throw them away. The popsicles last quite a long time.

Directions

  1. In the ice cube trays or paper cups mix different colors of paint with a little water and freeze until slushy enough to hold up craft sticks or plastic forks. Then continue freezing until solid
  2. When you’re ready to paint, take the paint popsicles outside and let them begin to melt
  3. Turn your kiddos loose to choose their colors and PAINT!

More Helpful Hints:

  • It’s difficult to say how much water to add to the paint because some paints are very liquid right from the container and others aren’t. Half water is probably too much. The following picture shows some popsicles I made with less water. They were brighter, but didn’t move around very smoothly. They were good for producing texture.
  • Also, some colors, such as red are intense pigments and will still be bright with more added water than green or yellow, which can lose color with too much water.
  • As always, be willing to experiment a little and try not to be a perfectionist. Your children will have fun even if some of the colors aren’t as bright as you’d like!
  • If you made your paint popsicles in paper cups, let the paint melt a little before trying to remove them from the cups
  • If the paper cup still sticks to the bottom of the popsicle, give it a little more melting time, then peel the paper away

Variations:

  • Place a paint popsicle on the paper in the sun and watch what happens as the ice and paint begin to melt. You can point out to children how the icy part begins to slide on what’s melting underneath. Somewhat like how glaciers move!!
  • What kind of designs can you get if there’s a little incline?

This art activity can help your children in other areas of learning:

  • This activity is called process art. It focuses on being in the moment, helping us relax and enjoy experimenting with the medium.  We don’t need to worry about producing something recognizable.
  • It can provide many fun moments of discovery with colors and materials
  • It’s good for little hands that may not be able to hold and control pencils or paintbrushes yet
  • The following activity can improve observational skills and vocabulary: explain the following Elements of Art, and have children find examples of these in their paintings.

             Line straight; curved; wavy; zigzag; slanted; standing up; lying down. Introduce the more grown-up words diagonal, vertical, and horizontal only if your children are ready.

            Shape formed by several lines. These don’t have to be exact geometric shapes—encourage creative descriptions

           Space we call empty space negative space in art

          Color cool and warm colors and complementary color pairs—red and green; blue and orange; and yellow and violet.

           Pattern any repetition of shapes, lines, colors. I couldn’t find any patterns in my creations, but you could encourage these as your children paint.

          Texture some paints produce a grainy texture you can see and feel

 

This art activity can help point your children to God: Why not make or buy some good-to-eat popsicles to enjoy while you talk about God’s wisdom in creating water—a substance necessary for life on this earth! And Our Savior, Jesus Christ who gives us living water for eternal life!!

Did you know?

  • The water you drank today may once have been part of a big, gray elephant leading its baby to a waterhole in Africa or a blue and yellow macaw flying through the Amazon rain forest.
  • Water is the most common substance on earth
  • 80% of the earth’s surface is water
  • Water is the only substance on earth naturally occurring in all 3 states-liquid, solid, gas
  • When water freezes its molecules move farther apart or expand. So ice is lighter than liquid water and able to float—ice cubes in your drink or icebergs in the ocean.
  • 75% of a living tree is water—think of all the water it takes to carry nutrients around a giant redwood tree that can be taller than the Statue of Liberty
  • 66% of the human body is water—water carries oxygen and nutrients to our cells, it helps protect our joints, organs, and tissues, it keeps our temperature even, and carries away wastes
  • A person can live about a month without food but only about a week without water

We and all creatures and plants need water to live! And yet, the same amount of water has been on the earth since God first formed the earth. But we don’t run out of water, because God, in His wisdom, created the water cycle:

  1. The sun’s heat melts ice to liquid water and evaporates that as well as water from ponds and lakes and oceans.
  2. This water vapor or gas rises high into the cooler air and condenses into a cloud.

Note about clouds: You’ve seen miniature clouds when boiling water produces vapor that condenses into a cloud of steam as it hits the cooler air outside the teapot. Or you’ve seen your warm, moist  breath condense into a little cloud when you breath out on a cold winter day. And don’t forget about dew. It shows us there’s always water vapor in the air, which condenses on the cooler leaves or flower petals in your garden.

  1. From the cloud water falls to earth again as rain or snow or hail.
  2. In this cycle water changes from a solid to a liquid to a gas over and over again.

God was the first and best ever recycler!

 

Read Psalm 19:1-6 together.  It tells of the general revelation of creation that we see all around us and points to a wise and loving God. Talk about other things in creation that point us to God, our Creator.

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies [including the wonderful water cycle] proclaim the work of His hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge.

Read about the woman at the well in John 4, especially verses 13-14. The Bible is special revelation, and in these verses Jesus uses water to reveal something very important about Himself. Discuss how He is our savior who gives us eternal life.

Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

Read also John 8:37-39a and discuss how the Holy Spirit lives in us and helps us live fruitful lives for our heavenly Father.

…. “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.” By this he meant the Spirit ….

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Molly hopes you enjoy painting with paint popsicles and learning about God’s wisdom in creating water and especially His love for us in Christ!!

Molly loves cool blues on hot summer days!

Molly and I also hope to see you right back soon for Another Fun and Easy Art Activity for Creative Kids!

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