Monday, July 1, 2013

4th of July Activities: Day 1

Red, White and Blue 
Homemade Candle Jar Craft
Tissue Paper Jewelry

Now let me just be honest, this will be our first year doing crafts for Independence Day. This happens to be one of my favourite holidays, but mainly because it means I get to spend time with a bunch of my family members that I haven't seen since the previous summer. We celebrate by having a day-long bbq and enjoy fireworks and sometimes a boat ride at night. 

But this year we will actually be home the week of Independence Day! And we won't be on an island with no electricity, hours away from our stash of art supplies! We will be home where we can celebrate the holiday all week long. We won't be doing all the crafts all on one day. That would just overwhelm my kids. So I've made a list of a couple that we will do each day and I will post them at some point during the day.

Now that my kids are a bit older, I can also start to teach them about what the holiday is and why it's important to celebrate it. We will also read books geared towards the meaning of the holiday. :)

For our first craft of the day, we will be decorating and transforming a recycled jar into a candle holder. I found this one over at Fantastic Fun and Learning and just loved it! When I showed Bean, she jumped up and down and said, "that one, that one!" And this is after we looked around on the web for a few minutes to find a red, white and blue themed craft that she wanted to do. So her excitement definitely put this one on the list.

How to upcycle a jar into a candle holder
First, remove all the glued on paper from the jar
(pizza sauce, spaghetti sauce and salsa jars work well)
Wash the jar thoroughly and dry
Set it up on a table (or splat mat or a tray) with glue, glitter, sequins and/or tissue paper. 
Paint the sides of the jar with the glue
 Then let the kids decorate! 

It's such a simple and fun craft! Bean's final decision was to make the sequin candle holder instead of the tissue paper candle holder, but when I brought out the supplies, she ended up using tissue paper anyways. :)

We had three different size jars, one for each. Munchkin and Bean's cousin J joined us for our first day of 4th of July celebrations. Munchkin chose the salsa jar, Bean chose the pizza sauce jar and J took the big spaghetti sauce jar. I poured white glue into 3 2 oz plastic cups. I left one white and added blue and red food colouring to the other two. They all immediately started painting their jars with the glue. J covered almost her entire jar in the white glue. Bean chose red and Munchkin chose blue, but eventually they switched the glue around and shared. J painted a flag on her jar and was so sad when it started to drip. We didn't water down our glue to try and prevent this, but hey, it happens.

These two were so calm while they painted glue on their jars. Normally their art is everywhere (the floor, the walls, my arms, etc.), but I think they were trying to follow J's lead (she is 8). They both tried to mimic her and cover their entire jars with glue.

She even added some to the inside because she said she missed a spot. :)

Munchkin was just swish-swishing his paint brush all over that jar.

Bean tried to drip the white glue into the jar, like we did with one of our paint drip projects, but it didn't work because J had used it all up.

J's jar after she gave up on preserving the flag. She swirled around the colours and added tons of glitter. :)

Our next craft of the day... was going to be a Red, White and Blue Wreath. But everyone just wanted to rush into the next craft and had no patience for tying tissue paper (it would have been a fun fine motor activity). So we made two quick patriotic bracelet/crowns.. Maybe next year we'll get to make the wreath!

We took tissue paper cut into strips and tied it loosely around the bracelet. We used 9 strips (3 red, 3 white and 3 blue). Perhaps next year we will try this again with ribbons and they can make actual crowns. :)

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