Saturday, May 31, 2014

MeXICo~! Piñatas!

 I started out with an awesome plan - mini piñatas all round, plus a class piñata PLUS some for our school picnic at the end of the month.
Sadly, it was all a bit much.
These were the designs for the mini piñatas, taken from a cookie cutter shape originally and enlarged. (If you have heaps of time, there are some AWESOME and yummy rainbow cake piñata recipes out there....!)

In the end, this burros design became a hanging decoration!

And with the help of these cheap downloads, all those mini burros were still put to good use!

We continued on with these - aiming for a star shape, but unable to find party cone hats!!

There were a few questionable moments with breakages and the like, but we kept on trucking!

In total, we have made about 6 pinatas - way too many, but worth it. The class did more than their fair share of work too!

Next - the healthy snack filling¬¬!! 

It worked a treat - at our Cinco de Mayo party and at the school picnic...almost too well! Tip - Don't make the pinatas toooooo strong!!!

MeXICo~! Papelo Picado!

 This was such a simple craft and perfect for my class! Simply fold the paper into four and cut the patterns you like!

We are preparing for a Cinco de Mayo style party and these are our decorations!

MeXiCo~! Paletas~!

As the weather warms up fast, an appropriate 'educational' activity connected to Mexico is their yummy paletas!
It's basically an ice pop made with fruity and sugary goodness!

We mixed in some strawberries, brown cane sugar and lemon juice. What a super yummy treat!


Makes 10 popsicles


4 cups strawberries, divided
3-4 tbsp organic sugar
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
¼ c simple syrup
¾ c cold water


  1. Wash and hull all the strawberries. Quarter 3 cups and place in a blender with the lemon juice and sprinkle 3 tbsp of the sugar over the top. Let sit 15 min to let the strawberries release their juices. Dice the remaining cup of strawberries into small pieces and sprinkle the remaining tablespoon of sugar on top and let sit for 15 min as well. 
  2. Divide the diced strawberries among the popsicle molds. Puree the strawberries in the blender with simple syrup and cold water. Let sit until the bubbles dissipate. Divide among the popsicle molds and freeze according to manufacturer instructions.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

MeXico~! Aztec beads

My class simply LOVE necklaces (boys too!), beads and anything they can make themselves to decorate themselves!

I stocked up on hama beads (the ironable, plastic beads that kids often use to make shapes with. We have them at the 'dollar store' / 100 yen store here.

Inspired by Aztec patterns, we set about trying our hand at our own designs.
 (There are some great ideas out there, but we wanted to keep it simple, but enjoyable enough for everyone. Playing with beads provides more entertainment for a 4 year old than using sharpies on a plate, although Aztec designs on a plate sounds like FUN!! Next time!)

The temptation was there to make the entire shape, but the class knew that we were making small beads so they stuck to the plan!

It was a great lesson in patterns and shapes, but more importantly, it was colourful and fun! Everyone was super happy with their new necklaces!!

MeXICo~! Calaveras!

Otherwise known as SKULLS!

This is a great introduction video for the kids. Evn though it starts off morbid, it gets the message across really nicely that the Day of the Dead is in fact a happy day and a true fiesta!


We started out with these paper plate Calaveras, moving up to large paper ones and then tried our hands at a salt dough skull too!

I guess kids like the idea of something scary being cute and of course, the chance to really put their art skills to use!

Paper plate calaveras!

Paper calaveras

Cavalera salt dough beads!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

MeXiCo~! The rice flag!

We're studying Mexico this month!
It's a great country for artistic endeavors!

I just wish we had more time to get involved...we have so many activities and days out this month, but here's our flag to start with!

We had great time mixing the rice (food colouring + rubbing alcohol)

After laying out all of the rice, we then decided to draw and paint our own mini flags to take home. Even with hoards of glue, the rice went everywhere! But, it was so much fun!!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Happy Mother's Day!

This was one of my favourite crafts with the kids!

...And it was certainly the best smelling one too!

When we made Chai tea last month, the class could not get enough of the cinammon!
With this in mind, I knew this was the perfect activity for their Mother's Day present!

We call it Cookie Sugar Scrub and it can be used on the hands, face, feet and body. it is one hundred percent edible too but as it is all sugar, it might not be the best thing to do!

They all had a blast mixing it all and filling the jars!


1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup oil (we used pure olive oil)
1 tsbp cinammon
1 tsbp nutmeg
1 tbsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Scavenger Hunt

Encouraging the class to spend more time outside isn't the hard task. Children naturally love the outdoors and can find absolutely anything to play with or, quite simply nothing at all! let their imagination run wild and see what they will develop by themselves.

As an introduction to more solid 'green' time with my class, I introduced the theme of the scavenger hunt.

They got on board really quickly and we talked about all of the thing we might find at our local 'big park'. (We are fortunate to have acces to a few parks in which we can play. Two of these parks are green and filled with trees, one has a pond with turtles (we counted over 40 this day) and some flowers too.

The only unfortunate issue about taking children to a 'green' space within the city is that they know that something else is out there. "I want to play" was the chorus after a solid, but not long enough 15 minutes of scavenging. Still, step by step for everyone and this is the first of what I hope will be may outdoor, green and wild experiences!

See my EARTH DAY post to see our pot pourri!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Earth Day


Rather than try a craft for Earth Day, I think the meaning is better shared with activities that directly teach what Earth Day is about - Nature.
As a class, we are propagating ivy and rooting it in water. It's a nice and simple activity, that improves the appearance of the classroom too.

After all the herbs and spices from our India activities plus the falling sakura blossoms, we made a simple pot pourri. The smells were just lovely!