Monday, April 28, 2014

Make it Monday: Flower of Appreciation


May 5th-9th 2014
National Teacher Appreciation week is just around the corner!

May 11th 2014
Mother's Day quickly follows!

So, here's another Make it Monday with not only a super easy craft for your kiddos, but also a simple way for them to say thanks to those who impact their lives.

This Flower of Appreciation craft is not only practical with Teacher Appreciation week and Mother's Day approaching, but full of potential skill development and learning fun. 

As a past middle school teacher I have met some adolescents whom lack the skills and/or understanding of appreciation. (Actually, I know quite a few adults who fall in that same category.)

I believe that appreciation and thankfulness should be taught through meaningful activities, discussion, play, and modeling.   I love to provide opportunities for my children to reflect on the wonderful role models they have in their life. 


Supplies:
  • Construction Paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue (squeeze bottle of glue for muscle strengthening)
  • Pencil, Pens, Crayons and/or Markers

Possible Skills:
  • Fine/Visual Motor: Cutting with Scissors; Pinching; Tearing; Folding
  • Fine Motor Strengthening: Scissors; Squeezing glue bottle
  • Visual Perceptual/Spacial Relations: Situating pieces onto paper; writing/drawing in within line boundaries of flower/leaves 
  • Cognitive: Colors Recognition and Identification
  • Color Concepts: Coordinating; Contrasting
  • Mathematics: Estimation; Symmetry
  • Problem Solving & Deductive Reasoning: Hypothesis of Symmetric shapes & Spacial Relations
  • Writing Readiness: Brainstorming thoughts of why one is thankful/appreciative; Translating the above thoughts into pictures and/or words
  • Social Concepts/Skills: Appreciation; Empathy; Communication; Initiation of Interactions
*please modify (or grade) skills/steps for your child's needs and safety, comment below to let us know if you need specific ideas for grading these steps up or down for their ages and skillset!



Directions: 

1. Fold a green piece of construction paper to the height that you want your grass.

2. Cut along fold.

3. Tear and/or cut paper about an inch or so down into small sections all the way across the top of    your grass.  Fold the cut sections down so they will create a 3D effect.

4.  On the remainder section of the green construction paper (that is not your grass) draw the flower stem and leaves.  Cut out each piece.

-For increased spacial skill difficulty have your child cut without drawing the shape first.

5. Select a piece of construction paper for the flower's center and petals.

-Color Identification: Child can name the colors they are selecting and/or select the colors you name.
-Color Concepts: As colors are selected for each part of the flower, discuss which colors your child thinks looks good together and why.

6. Draw a circle for the flower's center and cut it out.

-Problem Solving: Brainstorm what household item would be good to trace to create the circle size they desire.  ex. glass, small bowl, etc.

7. Fold the paper you are using for the petals and draw 1/2 of the petal from the fold.  Cut it out while paper is still folded.

*Depending on the age of the child the adult will probably need to draw the 1/2 petal on the fold

-Prediction: Child can hypothesize what the petal will look like when cut out shape is unfolded.
-Symmetry: Discuss the symmetry of each petal.
-Estimation: After cutting the first one estimate how many petals it will take to create the flower.

8. Discuss what it means to be appreciative/thankful.  Have your child brainstorm why you are thankful for the recipient of this craft.

9. Draw and/or write above thoughts of thankfulness/appreciation on pieces of your craft.

-Color Concepts: Discuss choice of colors and/or medium that will make the words pop and be the easiest to read.
ex. My daughter wanted to write in green on the green leaves, so she chose a marker instead of colored pencil.

10.  Allow your child to situate all of the pieces onto your background paper.

-Spatial Relations: If you are tight on room  brainstorm ideas with your child to increase room.
ex. We could have the bottom of the grass hang off the background paper giving more room for the flower.

11.  Glue pieces down.
If you child desires you can discuss what pieces you want to have a 3D effect.  Have the child fold down the section that you want to pop out and only glue down the rest to the paper.  My daughter did this with the cut grass and petals, but it could also be done with the leaves. The OT in Michelle would tell you to use the white glue and spread it with their fingers for some messy sensory play action!

12. Do a happy dance - your craft is complete!


Discussion Ideas
  • Senses: Does it smell, feel, look like exactly like a real flower? How could we make it more realistic? 
  • Real/Make Believe: Is the flower real or make-believe?  Why?
  • Imagination: If the flower were real what do you think this one would smell like? What could we use to make it smell like that?
  • Social: Why is it important to show appreciation? How do you think the recipient of this craft will feel?  Why?
      
I've included several possible skills extensions, learning opportunities, and ideas for discussion.
Of course you can always just complete the craft.  (Trust me, I have my share of "let's through something together as fast as possible" days.)

However, if you chose to turn this into a learning experience or make any fun adaptations, I would LOVE for you to share with us! Please, comment below with your ideas or if you have one, a Pinterest Pin and we'll repin YOUR project onto our Make it Monday Board! 



2 comments:

  1. Wow let just say I am not prepared for mother's day I haven't even started to think on what to get my mom. Thanks for the reminders :)

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    Replies
    1. Elizabeth, in the busy, hectic world we live in it is so easy to loose track of the days. Check back throughout the week to see more Mother's Day ideas. Have a wonderful weekend and thank you for reading Ramblings of Mama!

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Thanks a bunch for your comment love!