Sunday, October 27, 2013

Grasshoppers and Crickets

 Above: A nice job by my 5th grade student. Below: My 9- year-old student's cricket.
My little entomology class studied grasshoppers and crickets. We used a finish-the-drawing exercise for art on the day we studied crickets. I just found a good illustration on line, cut it in half, and printed the half onto papers for the kids to finish. I thought they might have trouble, but they just dived right in and did a great job. I was impressed with how simple and effective this project was.
I gave them toy cricket clickers that I bought on-line. They were fun. Interesting fact: Clickers were used in WWII to covertly identify friend from foe. A soldier would click once and if two clicks were returned the other soldier was friendly.
 We also made grasshoppers out of clothes pins. (Above W's grasshopper and cricket.)
My 5-year-old student did an amazing job on his cricket, and drew his own great grasshopper too.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Fall Color

I made a couple of permanent marker pumpkins for friends this week. I looked back at old patterns to do these two. Why reinvent the wheel? A very simple and satisfying craft. Draw your design on with washable markers, draw the final version with permanent markers, let dry, then lightly wipe the washable lines off with a damp paper towel. Other pumpkins are here,  here, here, and here, here, here, here, here,  and here.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Dragonfly Fun

In our entomology class we were studying dragonflies. I like to Google the insect we are covering and look for craft ideas and activities. Dragonflies are so cool anyway, and we did some fun dragonfly crafts. We learned a little basic macramé with t-shirt yarn to make our first dragonflies. We added a loop under some of them so they could ride on hands and fly around. The instructions I liked are here.

We used the flat sides of old milk cartons to make "stained glass" dragonflies. I pre-outlined a dragonfly picture with black permanent markers, and the kids colored them in with colored permanent markers while I read aloud from their textbook. Let dry a bit or the markers will smear. If you have more time or older kids they could copy out the dragonfly themselves. Cut out when dry and hang in a window or from a lamp. I first saw this idea here.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Full Pew

A while ago we had my sister's sweeties for an overnight. On Sunday, we had a nice full pew.
Miss O. likes Uncle Kevin, and Mr. O likes the kittens. Mr. H. likes everyone.

New Baby

Our B. friends had new baby Rebecca two weeks ago. Now they caught up to us! We got to have big brothers and sisters for a visit while Mom and Dad were at the hospital.
She is so pretty and sweet. Before we know it she will be getting "wild" with the big girls. (below)

 A full table for supper-just how we like it.

Sunday, October 20, 2013


My brother Aaron and Viva just moved "home" from MO. Yippee! They have a lovely rental place in the same town as Mom and Dad. Looking forward to more good times together.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Watercolor Leaves

Gideon and Ian work on their leaves.
W. chose a monochromatic color scheme with white oil pastel outline.
Ian used nice fall colors.
Gideon's color choices were bold and looked great together!
Eleanor produced a soft and delicate leaf, also monochromatic.
And this is my attempt in blues and greens. This project is an old favorite, and is pretty self explanatory. I recently added the crayon (or oil pastel) outlining, as it helps keep the watercolors from running together for younger or inexperienced painters.

Friday, October 18, 2013


Two distinctly different blues in the same sky. Today's postcard from God.

Photo Shoot

L. and I were part of a photo shoot for our niece/cousin Rebekah's purse business.(  ) It was fun and interesting. Bekah names her purses after people she knows, and L. and I each have one named after us!  (above: L. in navy.)

Bekah and her twin sis Sarah.
L. on far right.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


My art kids made butterflies a few weeks ago. After cutting, designing and coloring with oil pastels, I "mounted" their work in thrifted frames. This is one of my favorite original projects. They always turn out great and are fun for the kids to hang on their walls at home. Here is the process from another time I taught this lesson.

Daughter W.

Tessie-(who was visiting)

Cerulean Blue

Stunning color-Today's postcard from God.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Senior Pictures When You're Not a Senior

M. and W. went out the other day and took  "Senior Pictures When You are Not a Senior." They have fun shooting pictures outside together.

 Another day,  M. and Friend Katie had fun doing the same thing with kittens as a prop.