Tuesday, December 22, 2009

How to Make a Joy Sign

Well here is the Joy sign we made as part of Christmas Craft Day.....simple to make and together with the Pine cone Skier this was the most popular craft of the day.
Materials Required:
piece of corrugated cardboard 5"x15"
white paint
Mod Podge
sliver sequins
red and white wrapping paper
knitting needle
silver bow
tacky glue
Cut your cardboard to size...I precut all 120 signs before craft day.
Cut out your JOY letters using the red and white wrapping paper. At school I used the die cut machine to precut all the letters but you can use my template if you wish.
Using white acrylic paint or gesso paint the cardboard white.
Add a coat of Mod Podge and then lay out your letters on top. Add a top coat of podge. The kids had a great time doing this and we only had a few "YOJ"s from the Grade Ones.
While the podge is still wet you can add your sequins. You can use tacky glue as well to ensure the sequins stay on.
The kids went thru thousands of sequins and in the end we were using leftover multicolored ones to add that sparkle.
Using a knitting needle punch 2 holes for the hanger. Wrap a piece of wire (22 inches) around a pencil...stretch it out a bit and then tie into your holes. Add a silver bow and let dry.
As you can see it was a great time on Friday....120 kids ...12 crafts...30 plus Moms,Dads, and Grandmas.
Thanks everyone for coming out and making our Craft Day a huge success!!!
I also wanted to show Grade 4's Christmas Clay project...Angel plates.
We used acrylic paint and glitter glue for highlights. I just finished sealing them with 2 coats of Duraclear yesterday.
Great job Grade 4!
If I find some time I'll try to post the last few crafts from Christmas Craft Day...if not I want to take this chance to wish everyone a fantastic Holiday and I'll see you soon with lots more projects from you know "that artist woman"
Merry Christmas

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

How to Make a Pinecone Skier

So here is the next craft that we will be doing on Christmas Craft Day...an easy Pine cone Skier.

Materials Required:
pine cone
2 round toothpicks
2 mini Popsicle sticks
red paint
1 inch pompom
2 small googly eyes
1 tiny pompom for nose
scraps of felt
1 white pipe cleaner
2 sequins
small pompom for hat
tacky glue

To make a pine cone skier you first need to paint your toothpicks and mini Popsicle sticks.
I took the toothpicks and cut off the top pointy end and then painted them red.
For the skis I painted 2 mini Popsicle sticks red...for Christmas Craft day I lucked out at the dollar store and found some picket fencing that is normally used for a Christmas village but will work perfectly for this project.

Take the two red toothpicks and put a dab of glue on the hole in the sequin. Push the pointy end of the toothpick into the glue. These will be your ski poles.
Set aside.

Take your 1 inch pom pom and glue on the 2 eyes as well as the mini pom pom for the nose.

With the scraps of felt cut out a circle for the hat.

Glue on top of the head and then add a sparkly pompom on top.

Set aside.

Take your white pipe cleaner and cut it in half. Wind around the pine cone near the top and give it a twist...these will be your arms.
I found these silver and gold pine cones at the dollar store 12 for a $1.00. You can use the ones from outside and just add some glitter or paint.
Here in Canada our pine cones are now buried under 2 feet of snow!

Bend the arms to look like your skier is working really hard to snowplow up that hill.

Add a dab of glue where the hands would be.

Slide in the poles...you can squeeze the pipe cleaner to hold it in place while the glue sets up.
Put some glue on top of the pine cone and glue on the head.

Let sit for a few minutes.

Turn pine cone over keeping your finger pressing down on head to ensure it stays on and put some glue where you want the skis to go.

Attach your skis. You can arrange them so they are snow plowing or straight on...it's up to you.

That's it...a very cute pine cone skier. If you want you can add a string at the top for hanging on the tree.
See you soon with a special JOY sign project.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Simple Christmas Trees

Here is a simple Christmas Tree that is very easy to make. You can make it any size you wish. Perfect as a companion to the Snowman we made in an earlier post here.
Materials Required:
corrugated paper or cardstock
glue stick
tacky glue
glitter glue
Styrofoam stars
In September I was cleaning out the paper supply room at school and came across a lot of odds and ends of corrugated paper....we use it as a background on bulletin boards.
The caretaker was going to toss it but I convinced him to keep it as I knew I could make it into a project. So this is what I came up with.
You need 3 identical tree shapes for this. You can use my tree template or make your own.
If you don't have any corrugated paper you can make some using a crimper...one of my favorite tools (about $23.00 at Michael's) or you can just use plain cardstock it works just as well.
Trace out 3 trees. At school I used the Ellison die cut machine. We had a tree die, I just needed to cut the trunk off.
If using corrugated paper you want the lines to run vertically...this makes for easier folding in the next step.
Cut out with scissors.
Fold trees in half.
Take one tree and unfold...apply glue to the back with a glue stick.
Take the 2nd tree and stick one half on the tree with the glue on it. Try to match up all the edges.
Take the 3rd tree and apply glue to the 1/2 that will connect to the 2nd tree you just added. Press together matching edges.
Your tree should look like this now.
Using what you have on hand decorate your tree. I used sequins, glitter glue...I found these small Styrofoam stars at the dollar store...I left some of them plain and others I covered with glitter.
That's it....easy peasy. It's a good craft for younger kids and it's nice that it stands up on it's own.
Stay tuned for more Christmas crafts that we will be doing on Christmas craft day this Friday....125 kids rotating thru 12 crafts and I still haven't finished all the prep.
Next up....Pinecone Skiers ...see you soon.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Christmas Clay Projects - Poinsettia Candle Holders

Here is a clay project Grade 6 has been doing for the last several years....a clay Poinsettia candle holder. (Great project Mr. Z!). You could also make these out of salt dough or air dry clay (Prang) if you don't have access to a kiln.
I was helping out last week but forgot to take pictures of the process so you'll have to settle for my notes.
Take a slice of clay and roll out to about 1/2 inch thick. Using a skewer cut 10 petals. You can use my template Poinsettia Petal.
Starting with the bottom layer...lay out 5 petals, slightly overlap them. Scratch and add a little water on the surfaces that touch in order to "glue" them together. You want a solid center so squish the clay together to form that center.
The second layer of petals goes on top of the bottom layer but the petals lay in between the space of the petals of the bottom.
Something like this....click on pictures to see larger. We used a cup that was the same size as a votive to make an impression in the center...this is where the candle will go.
We then rolled out 5 small pea sized balls and set them around the outside of this impression at equal intervals. Remember to "scratch, scratch,water, water" all surfaces that are touching to glue them together.
They had an option of curling up their petals if they wanted and they scored the veins on their petals for texture.
They should look like this when finished. Let dry for 1-2 weeks, bisque fire, glaze, and then fire again.
If using salt dough or air dry clay, paint with acrylic and add a coat of Mod Podge to seal.
This is the one my daughter made last year. Grade 6 will be glazing theirs this week.
I have a simple paper Christmas Tree to post as well. We will be doing it for Christmas Craft Day which is being held on Friday Dec 18th.
Unfortunately the weather has been so gloomy I have been unable to get any decent photos and my photo assistant has been getting in the way!
I'll wait till tomorrow to see if I can get some good natural light.
See you soon.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Christmas Clay Projects - Nativity Plates

Grade One started these plates a month ago....Christmas is a busy time with the kiln. With all the projects needing to be completed I have to make sure I schedule it right.

We start off rolling out a slice of clay...we want it to be about 1/2 inch thick.

We place a lunch sized paper plate on the clay and using a skewer cut out our plate shape.

You'll notice I covered the paper plate with plastic wrap....this just ensures it doesn't stick. I'll remove it in a few days and place the clay plate back in the paper plate until it is fully dry.

Lift up your clay and place in the paper plate. Using a bit of water smooth your edge so it isn't jagged or sharp.

The kid's wrote their names and the year along the rim of the plate.

They then rolled a snake shape to create their manger. We did the roof first and then added the sides.

I always tell the kids "scratch, scratch..water, water" to get them to remember the have to score the surfaces they want to stick together as well as add a bit of water.

Once the manger was created they worked on Mary and Joseph. I had them cut a body shape and a head out of rolled out clay with the skewer.

I find skewers work the best for cutting shapes...the kids have more control than with plastic tools.

Glue your people into place using the "scratch, scratch,..water, water"

You need to make a cradle, just a little banana or crescent moon shape as well as a little baby Jesus.

Then using small cookie cutters we made a star shape for the top of our manger.

Using garlic presses make some hay for the manager and hair for Joseph and Mary.

To attach just scratch the area where you want the hay/hair to go and add a touch of water...you can't really scratch the hay/hair itself.

It should look like this when you're done.

We added some star imprints to our sky.

Let it dry for approximately 2 weeks to ensure a good result in the bisque fire.

Here are some of the Nativity's the Grade Ones completed.

After the bisque fire you can glaze and then fire again. We opted to paint with acrylics and then seal with 2 coats of Duraclear.

Here are some of the finished plates...some still have wet sealer so they look a little milky but will dry to a shiny gloss.
That's it.
See you soon