Thursday, 1 August 2013

A few art bits we have done over the last few weeks...

I love these easy pieces so i thought I would share them with you all! My 5 year olds coped well with everything and loved doing them !

Monday, 13 May 2013

Name trains *Free template*

We are learning about transport so I have been holding onto an idea I found on Pinterest here, which was inspired by this idea! I love that ideas just like this can be found on Pinterest and we can all share ideas! Thank you to these wonderful boggers for all their inspiration! You should really check them out!

Anyway, back to my Name trains...
I created a master of train carriages, with each letter and capital letters. I photocopied these onto colored card and snipped them into individual letters. We colored and cut our engines then stuck them onto long sheets of grey paper i had lying around. We did the capital letter for each child as a class then I allowed my kids to choose the rest of their letters one at a time and stick it onto their trains at their own pace. I wondered around and assisted where necessary. I was really impressed with how well my kids coped with this, even the ones I was a bit concerned about! Don't you just love those moments when your kids surprise you!

I let my kids choose their letters one at a time.
We drew a railway, some cargo and even a conductor

I love our Name trains.

Get my template here, or leave your email address in the comments and ill send it straight to you!


Wednesday, 6 March 2013

How to draw Dr Seuss' The Cat in the Hat. Step by step

Hi all,

I am a huge Dr Seuss fan, I remember my mom reading his stories to me as a child and clearly created a love in me for all things Seuss! My colleges know that anything on this theme is mine and I often get sweet messages telling me about something Dr Seuss they have found! To this end, i have been very excited to see all this Dr Seuss stuff on Pinterest and the though of being able to create my very own Cat in The Hat portraits...well I bounced off the wall with excitement! Thank you so much to Tammy at for inspiring this amazing art!

I have included step by step visual instructions here...

we used black markers to draw the cat, red wax crayon to color him in and then black wax crayon to draw "fur" around his face and ears!

 I laugh every time i see them, too sweet!

Hope you enjoyed these as much as i have!

Love Alex

All about me glyphs

Hi All,

Well we have just hit the second week of school and its been a bit hectic but I am enjoying my new kiddies. As always, a new year brings with it new challenges! My kids are settling down nicely and almost no tears so hurrah for that!

Last year I was given the slightly daunting task of foyer art which needs to be replaced every week or two. This is like a bulletin board display that goes up in the main entrance of the school so that ALL the parents can see it! Eek! I am in a preschool which makes my kids the oldest group and hence why this duty has fallen to me. I tried to suggest that each group has a chance but alas no luck. I don't really mind too much though, really, I just need to reel in the perfection freak inside me that demands extra special art goes up (when really I'm sure the parents just like to see their kids creations).

Anyway for this weeks foyer art we are learning about "Me" so I have decided to do "All about me glyphs". This is my first shot at doing glyphs so fingers crossed they come out alright! I created a cute sign explaining the glyph (the key) and off we went!

We started by studying the key and discussing each aspect. I have given you some ideas below but you can adjust things to your needs.

  • We separated into girls and boys to see who would need bows or bow ties.
  • We discussed how old they are for buttons.We did grouping, the correct number of  claps, drawing numbers in the air and on each others backs, number recognition etc. Most of them are still 5 but there are a few that are already 6.
  • With siblings we first discussed our families, who is in our family, who has brother and sisters, how many people they have in their family and looked at our family photographs (sent in by parent earlier in the theme.) We also looked at different types of stripes and spotted patterns. We separated into groups for who would be doing stripes and who would be doing spots.
  • We used our crayons when discussing the bow tie colours and did a few colour recognition activities first before we discussed our favourites colours. 

I was very proud of how my kids did,. it was a nice visual representation of ourselves and the kids enjoyed seeing who had siblings, who was the same age etc.

I did create a basic worksheet of the face outline, bowties or hairbows and the "Hello my name is" sign. Drop me a comment and i will gladly send it to you!

Happy teaching!
Love Alex

Saturday, 5 January 2013

My type of disclaimer

Hi All,

I have decided to start my first "crafting" activity, tonight , at 6pm. The mood just struck so I went with it.

Now before I launch into crafty talk I need to explain something. This is my first DIY project, ever, in my whole life. I have never made something from something else, never tried my hand at interior decorating, never helped to fix anything in a family garage, nothing.
This is it, ground level. I have no previous gems of knowledge to draw on, if its not on Pinterest then I don't know it.
This means that everything from this point onward is experimental, from technique to tools.

When I started with this idea we didn't run out and buy a bunch of new tools and a work bench. My DIY area is also our dining room and our bar area. Now don't get me wrong, we have some tools, we even have a "man draw" that holds everything from hammers, beading wire, sewing kits, batteries, string, a screwdriver and even a hammer in it. this means that our tool kit is a bit lacking, the plan is to build on the supplies as I need them. After all this is meant to be a money saving activity, not a money burning activity! In the meantime, I make do...

My spatchula / paint scraper
I'm alright with that, as N said when I started this, he doesn't understand why I want to do this, maybe I'm soul searching, maybe I have lost my mind , the jury is still out on that one but I'm excited to see where Crayons and Crafting will take me so for now, that's enough for me!

Until next time,
Love Alex

Friday, 4 January 2013

Polka dot theme organisers

Hi All,

I have been busy thinking about how to organise the paperwork in my house, my task for the month of January. As the bills side of things already has a system that we are pretty happy with and works for us, I started examining the other paperwork in my stuff! Somehow it's everywhere! Thankfully my man is tolerant  about the explosion of papers that seem to follow me around!

I have been working on finding a system that works for me and I think I have finally found one that I quite like, but it requires clear labelling to work. I am using plastic folders with a stud to close it and each theme gets its own folder. I have found this to be a good system because art, worksheets, flashcards, theme planners etc. all fit into one place then as each theme comes up I just whip out the folder and have easy access to all my information and master sheets related to the theme. The folders all live in a plastic box which clips shut and has wheels. The boxes can be found at most plastic shops and the folders from Waltons or other stationary shops typically stock them. They can be quite expensive (R12.50 each!) so shop around, I have found them for less than half of this.

I have created A4 labels that I printed and slotted into each file. As my files are tinted I printed these on white paper but if you like it could be printed on coloured card.

 If you would like a copy of these, please just leave your email address in the comments and I will email it to you. It is 51 pages of all the themes I have used in previous years and some others I thought of so its quite a collection! I have also included some blanks for you to create your own sheets and I will gladly create any for you that I have left out so please feel free to use this!

This is the box I keep my folders in.
It has a secure lid too so it can be stacked easily for storage .

A look at my folders. Blue are theme folders and orange are literacy lessons.

Each theme page has the theme written small in the top left hand corner so I can easily flip through them when I am looking for something without having to lift each file out of the box (like my system at the moment!)

This is the front of the folders I use...

...and the back!

I hope you have found this helpful! 
Happy organising!
Love Alex
 I have managed to create a link for this resource in my Dropbox! All you need to do is click on the link below and download it! You will need a Dropbox account (which is free and easy to sign up for...and totally revolutionised my life. No more carrying around flash sticks, which I lose at least 3 times a day at school!). Dropbox is a bit like Google Drive...similar concept...I, personally, have had a better experience in Dropbox, but each to their own I guess.

Click here to download my theme headings document:

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Monthly organisation challenge 2013

Hi All,

Well as I'm still on school holidays until the 14 January and I figure 2 weeks is plenty of time to get myself ready for my new bunch of kids (our school year runs from January to December here in South Africa). I know, who am I kidding right, there is never enough time to prep in a teachers life! but in an effort to achieve a few non work-related things this year I though I should get started on one of my resolutions for 2013, getting my home organised! 

I found this really great monthly challenge over at Delightful Order which I think will get me going in a good direction. It was a bit daunting to think about organising a whole house by myself...but hopefully by following some of the guidelines from this challenge I'll be able to do it!
Look out for some "before and after" photos of this adventure here on my blog.

Here is the button for the challenge, id love to hear about you joining up with us to do this!