Picture Tutorial. Ever see those colorful magazine baskets and wish you knew how to make them? This series of photographs takes you through the process step-by-step.
Video Tutorial. If you need a more detailed explanation, watch this video. The video calls for decoupage glue, which most people don’t have on hand. Try making this substitute.
Science and Math
Turned used paper into seed paper. Gather up used paper from around your house and turn it into handmade recycled paper with embedded seeds. The whole page can be planted. These make fantastic greeting cards.
The Poetry of Trash
Cast Away Young People’s Poet Laureate, Naomi Shibad, finds treasure in trash, writing poems about objects she encounters in on her walks. Download this book, and play it while you take a walk in your neighborhood. Why do YOU notice while you’re out walking?
Neighborhood Bridge Walk. Take a walk around your neighborhood and look for bridges. You may see some bridges that have a lot of meaning to our community, like Beta Bridge, Belmont Bridge, and Free Bridge. You will surely find small bridges as well, maybe so small you never even really noticed them before. Look closely. How are they made? How old do you think they are? Do people use them in other ways besides crossing to the other side? How do they create and support communities? Take pictures, draw, or describe the bridges you see. If your bridge crosses water, play Pooh Sticks.
Now that you’ve visited neighborhood bridges, you’re nearly ready to build some bridges of your own. First, you need to figure out how to make your bridge strong.
Let’s try at least three kinds of bridges and test each with weight to see if it holds up.
Bridge #1: Fold a piece of paper in half lengthwise (hot dog style). Place two cups upside down on a table about three inches apart, so that the paper “bridges” the space between the cups. Place pennies onto your bridge until it collapses. How many pennies did it hold?
Bridge #2: Cut a second piece of construction paper in half
lengthwise. Fold each strip on the long
sides. Tape the strips together. Place the paper on the cups as before and put
pennies on it until it collapses. How
many pennies would it hold this time?
Bridge #3: With your final piece of paper, fold it like an
accordion. Balance the folded paper
between the cups and place the pennies on it as before. How many pennies did it hold?
Which bridge held the most weight? Why do you think that was? Do you have any other ideas? Different folds? Different materials? Can you make a bridge strong AND beautiful? Google famous bridges and look at some of the world’s most amazing and important structures.
Video Version. Here’s a video of a very similar activity if you are the kind of person who learns by watching.
Art and Literature
Here are two stories about bridges and neighbors:
The Bridge, This is a story about two brothers who still fought, even though they were now grown. One of the brothers hired a carpenter, who solved their problem in a surprising way. Suited for all readers.
The Bridge to Terabithia. Two children, from very different backgrounds, build a bridge…and an imaginative new world. Some emotionally difficult material which some children may find upsetting.
Tape Mazes and other cool gross motor activities. Who knew a roll of tape could be so much fun? No painters tape on hand? Try masking tape, string, or yard. Or go outside and create with sticks.
Science and Math
Tangrams offer intriguing activities for people of all ages and abilities.
Tangram patterns provide mind-stretching puzzles that develop spatial relationships and problem solving skills, but the most important thing: they are super fun. Tangram pieces can also be used to create freestyle artworks while developing the same skills. We’ve linked one set of printable patterns, but it will be simple to find your own, suited to your children’s skill levels, simply by entering “tangram patterns” in your search engine.
As we continue to enjoy National Poetry Month, let’s look at out how poets and lyricists express the feeling of being uplifted.
Happy. “If you feel like a room without a roof.” Wow! What a powerful way to describe happiness. Listen to the lyrics of Pharrell Williams’ “Happy,” and you can’t feel anything but joy. That’s the power of writing.
“Hope is the Thing With Feathers.” Spoken.ASL With Captions. Emily Dickinson uses the same theme of being lifted up in her famous poem about hope. How do you feel when you know something wonderful is just about to happen? Like something is about to soar inside you?
Try one of these opening phrases and write your own song or poem: “Joy is_____”, “Sadness is _____”, “Anger is _____”, “Love is _____,” “Excitement is _______,” “Relief is ______.”
If you would like to further explore this pairing of “Happy” and “Hope Is the Thing With Feathers,” download our lesson plans. These plans included adaptable materials for writers in need of frameworks and visual aides.
Jump for Joy: Here are a couple of videos to inspire you.
Okay, did they inspire you? Or more like intimidate you? Here are two videos to help you get those jump rope moves down.
Home Safari at 3:00 Daily. Come on a Safari! The Cincinnati Zoo is hosting a daily tours highlighting different animals and sharing activities to do at home.
Art and Literature
The Art of Autism. Go on a gallery tour. During Autism Awareness month, Apple is offering a gallery of art works created on iPads by people with autism. These beautiful works will probably inspire you to create some art of your own.
Virtual Jam Session. And the Children’s Museum of Atlanta is offering a jam session today. Visit their website anytime for this and more daily virtual activities.
More Magic. Yesterday, we suggested this quarantine would be a great time to read or re-read the Harry Potter Series. Here is a very diverse list of movies about magic. This list has movies suitable for everyone to from young children to adults with notes to help you decide if the themes are appropriate for you and your family.
Maybe you’d rather make your own magic.
The whole concept of “moving pictures” evolved from the illusion of motion caused by watching a rapid succession of images that are just barely changing. Make your own movie flip book with a few sheets of paper stapled in one corner.
Access Arts Virtual Art Show. It was a huge disappointment to miss the annual opening of the Access Arts Show at Carver Recreation Center. This show features the works of artist with differing abilities, and is one of the highlights of our year. View the show remotely through our link, but come back as soon as Carver reopens and see these beautiful works in person.
The Beauty of Science. Among these intriguing science experiments are several that would actually make gorgeous works of art. Maybe you have a place you can display them outside your house for the Art Apart exhibit. Or take pictures of your experiments and share the pictures.
Gallery At A Distance. Now go back to to the Art Apart page and you will find a map showing all the art work entered in the exhibit. Take a walk to enjoy the beautiful spring day and the beautiful creations. Take pictures and tag enrichmentalliance on Instagram.
Our director, MaryAnna, learned this mind-blowing card trick from her mother as a child and reports that no one she knows has ever been able to figure out how it works. It will work every time, but YOU MUST COUNT CAREFULLY. Practice counting smoothly, too, so that your friend won’t understand how you got to your answer. You can try this at home with your family, or use a phone app. Look up card tricks and mathematical card trips for more jaw dropping tricks.
Magic tricks using a any pen you have on hand. (Until you don’t). As they say, it’s all a slight of hand. Practice these tricks in front of a mirror, or video tape yourself. Then put on a magic show.
Art and Literature
Older children and teens, download a trickster tale in the library and record or illustrate it for a young friend or sibling. If you don’t have a library card, you can download a temporary one. If you want to share your story publicly, you will need to to retell it in your own words or you may get into copy right issues. Here’s a link to the JMRL catalog, filtered by “trickster tales ebooks.” Look for books with “J” in the call number.
Here are two traditional trickster tales read aloud. One of them is signed in a combination of American and British Sign Language. The stories are suitable as stand-alones for younger children.
Retell a fairy tale. There’s always more than one side to every story. This website gives you some great ideas on how to write different versions of favorite fairy and folk tales. If you loved Ella Enchanted, you’ll love this activity.
Story baskets. Adapted. If you are the kind of person who likes props and visuals, fill a basket with action figures, plastic houses, and dragon puppets, whatever you can find that belongs in a fairy tale and use it to retell a favorite story. Share your pictures with your friends and be sure to tag #enrichmentalliance.
Make your own science museum. Fill boxes, baskets, bins, whatever you have on hand, with hands-on science materials. This link will give you some ideas. You are not likely to have the slick looking materials in their images lying around the house, but see what you can do instead. Can you find a measuring tape? A magnet? Share pictures of YOUR science kit with us on Instagram: enrichmentalliance.
Make your own fitness center. If you have cardboard, tape, socks, etc, you have a fitness center. This link is full of suggestions on how to put it all together and turn a corner of your home into your own gym. Post pictures of your equipment and share them with enrichmentalliance.
Art and Literature
Make your own library. The link on the left shares a few ideas for creating your own reading nook. Once you look at these ideas, you’ll probably have more ideas of your own. Make a reading nook and please, send us a picture at enrichmentalliance on Instagram. Now all you need are some books, right? That’s easier than you might know.