This was a project that was GREAT for a slow Sunday afternoon, but I think it would be a FANTASTIC addition as an activity for a Family Home Evening! You could use it to review whatever your lesson material and assign the lesson topic as the topic for the projects created. Enjoy!
So, TWO wanted to do an art project with me today. I normally LOVE it when she comes to me and says, “Mommy, can I do an art project with you?” However, today was a bit different. When she posed the question to me, we were already in the middle of a scrapbooking activity. So I told her, “Yes, that is why we are doing this.” She wanted to do a different art project, so I told her that another activity might be great after we were all the way done with what we were already doing. Naturally, as we were almost finished with the scrapbook fest, the baby woke up and wanted attention RIGHT NOW! We quickly gathered and put away the rest of the scrap party, but then poor TWO was forced to wait while the mommy became the human milk machine for the tiny princess. After FIVE was fully satisfied, I took a Mommy-needs-two-solo-minutes break. After I had had a chance to finally spend some time in prayer on this Sabbath, I felt mostly ready to take on the rest of the day with my crazies.
I went out and sat on the couch with ONE, TWO, and THREE all ready to do TWO’s art project activity. She had tried to describe a game she wanted to play for the activity, but like most games they make up, the rules were highly complex and I was confused before we even started. I asked if we could use her idea, but simplify a bit. TWO is fine with complex and did not want to acquiesce until she realized that ONE and THREE were over it before starting too. We simplified and started the game. I am especially glad we toned things down, because by the end of the game, even FOUR was able to join in and fully understand and participate!
So here is how the game worked…
Supplies Needed: Paper and Markers (or crayons, or colored pencils, or…)
To Begin: Select a “director” and have that person decide some silly way for each child to select a marker. The director tells everyone what to do and everyone gets a marker to start the first round with. Some ideas for ways to choose colors in each round include: sibling 1 picks a color for 2, sibling 4 picks one for 3, grab the one closest to you, close your eyes while someone else mixes them up and take whatever color you touch first, take the color the person on your left had last, take the color the person across from you had very first, etc. Obviously the ways are fairly limitless for how to pick colors, but the more varied and funky, the more fun the kids seem to have. Since I was the director, I tried to let each child pick the color they wanted very most for at least one round. (Don’t do this on the same round for multiple children to avoid any “Mine! Mine!” syndrome. That comment should indicate that the means to select color was not the same for every child every round. For some rounds, none of them were directed to choose the same way!)
Regular Rounds: The director tells everyone what they need to draw. It can be a type of object or a specific shape, but it has to be the same for everyone. Some examples for things to direct the participants to draw include: use a circle, draw a silly shape, use a square – but not as a house, draw a person, etc. They can use the direction given however they choose to, however each round adds to the SAME picture. Each piece they include has to be incorporated into what they have going on in their picture in some way. In other words, there are not just a bunch of disconnected images – they all merge to be one picture story. After a child has incorporated the directed thing into their picture, they can free-draw until the director calls for all markers to be set down (normally whenever the slowest artist has been able to get the whatever down on their paper). Then a new set of instructions are given and a new round commences.
Final Round: When it feels like the kids are getting to a wrap up point or when attention span seems to be waning, the director announces the final round. In this last round any color can be used and colors can be traded as much as the kids want. They can color anything they need/want to finish up their picture. BUT, they will only have 30 seconds to finish up! (This can be longer or shorter depending on the kids for sure! For mine it was longer than THREE or FOUR needed/wanted, but not quite as long as TWO wanted and about perfect for ONE – that seemed just the right balance point for this crowd. Look at your players and feel out a good time frame to allow some resolution of developed thoughts not yet put to the paper, but without leaving tons of new thought time to drag on and on.) Start the timer and when time is up, then all colors have to be set aside. One by one, the artists get to explain their masterpiece. Have the younger ones that might need help with writing verbally explain, while the director takes the dictation (trying to stick with only what the child was thinking, not the director’s thoughts). As the younger ones explain, the older ones can write their own story of what is happening in their picture.
Viola! A whole set of hilarious stories and illustrations! A fun and easy family project where everyone can make something exciting and fun – all together too. This is one Sunday activity that we will be revisiting. All that’s left is to hang them on the wall/fridge/door/brag board/whatever for a week or compile them in the family scrapbook!