Monday, July 27, 2009

Blogs: Curriculum planning gets creative!

I just saw this on Serendipity's blog and I'm so excited to begin gathering these resources for String Bean's curriculum for next year.

Seems the VERY creative minds of Elizabeth Foss and Jennifer Mackintosh have merged to create a curriculum (with all but math -- easy to add) for girls at the bend in the road, girls who are between 11 and 15 where they begin to blossom like a flower in the garden. A Fascination of Its Own: Literature for the Young Lady at the Bend in the Road goes beyond most curriculum plans and is specifically for Catholic girls.

And flowers, gardening and creativity play a LARGE role in the curriculum plans ... something right up String Bean's "alley". I love that this curriculum is written by two amazing Catholic women for their own girls ... I love that they've shared their work with others at no cost ... I love that it is a fully integrated, Catholic program that has the girls loving, learning and living their faith and their subjects ... I love these plans.

Head on over to Serendipity and check it out ... you'll love the creativity that went into all the plans, with promises of more to come!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Blogs: paper dolls need a home?

Check out Jennifer's solution! These look like the kind of dolls my own 9yod loves to make ... and what a great idea for keeping them contained! I love it! And this is one of those that the kids can really go to town with!

Thanks, Jennifer for sharing.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Books and resources: Painting

Jenn at 4real asked about books on helping kids (and adults) learn to watercolor.

Here are some books I've found helpful:
  1. Painting with Children by Brunhild Muller -- very good detailed instructions; a little more Waldorf-y than I like (includes poems to unleash the creativity within) but the information is worth getting the book
  2. Watercolors: for the Artistically Undiscovered (Klutz) by John Cassidy -- just fun to use; many of the pages are watercolor paper so you can do the exercises and play right away (including watercolor paint).
  3. Watercolor Basics: Let's Get Started by Jack Reid -- don't be put-off by the cover; this book is a gentle tutorial on watercolor painting. Reid has taught for many years, thousands of students how to paint gorgeous watercolor like the cover image!
  4. Watercolor in Motion: How to Create Powerful Paintings by Birgit O'Connor -- now here's a great one because not only is there a spiral-bound books (I love spirals as you can lay the book flat without worry) but she has also done a 50-minute DVD so you can SEE what she means. I really liked this one and the kids learned alot.
  5. Fine Art Studio: Watercolor by Mary Iverson -- like the Klutz book mentioned above, ths is a full kit with paints, watercolor pencils (which are so fun to use), watercolor paper and a mixing palette (altho you can use any shallow, plastic plate just as well). This one is geared for kids and includes work examples by Beatrix Potter -- one of our favorites. The recommended age is 10 but there is no reason that younger kids (with adult help) couldn't do the 40-page book!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Blogs: Charlotte gets pretty crafty here!

I can always count on Charlotte to have some cool, Catholic-inspired craft ideas. Today, she's posted some awesome Saints'n'Stitches -- some very cool outlines for making saint dolls by stitching the outlines.

You could also use these very creative drawings for making two-dimensional cloth dolls by copying the lines with a black-marker onto cloth and cutting out (you can always do basic lines to do a "back" or just repeat the front shape) and stuffing! What about fabric markers for "coloring in", just like a coloring-book page!

And Charlotte, who is always so generous with sharing her talents ... has done 12 of these and they're FREE to anyone to make dolls for their kids -- or better yet, have the kids MAKE the dolls!


Sunday, July 12, 2009

Blogs: PineWood Castle posts some amazing plans ...

Check out this post from Tracy at PineWood Castle .... wow ... now that's nurturing creativity and spirituality and loving and living with your kids!

The plans carry through Thanksgiving. And, she promises to post Advent plans soon. Can't wait to see those.

Lovely, Tracy ... and thanks for sharing all these plans with the blogosphere!

HT: Elizabeth for sharing the link!