Thursday, April 21, 2011

Westward Pioneer Ho

 I love doing crafts.  I love working on Art Projects.  I love doing something fun with my boys.  When I get to do both I feel like I have hit the Jack Pot!  Ethan and Noah have gone through the Iowa City School District for Elementary where Matthew and Joshua went through the Des Moines School District for Elementary. Each school district does fun things or units.  Des Moines for 3rd graders did a wonderful unit on the city they live in.  I am sure Iowa City does as well but the project for 3rd grade in Des Moines was a fun one and can be a creative one.  My older boys (Matthew and Joshua) both did an 'ABC Book of Des Moines'  We sat down and found interesting places or photo opportunities of Des Moines for each letter of the alphabet.  I drove them around the city where they took a picture of the building/monument and then we had the pictures printed where they basically scrapped book a page for each letter.  I wish I was able to grab those books when I left their father, it would have been great keepsake for them.

The 5th graders in Iowa City do a Western Frontier project.  My younger two enjoy crafting more then my older two did, so I had a lot of fun with Ethan.  Click here to see his final project.  He could not make up his mind between a log cabin or a covered wagon, so we did both.  Noah wanted to make a tee pee model of course I my creative mind would not just stop with the idea of a stand alone tee pee.  I gave Noah my suggestions and he loved it.  This would be a fun I'm bored Mom project for children as well.

Cardboard box lid (or any type of thick cardboard) ~ I used a paper box from work.
Green felt squares ~ I used 2  -- $0.20 each at Wal-Mart
5 wooden stirrers from work (you can use small dowels- Wal-Mart had 15 for $2.89)
1 bottle of blue glitter glue ~ $1.89 at Wal-Mart
1 bottle of Aileen's Tacky Glue ~ $2.49 at Wal-Mart
Hot glue gun ~ previously have
Small decorative pebbles (you could use sand as well) ~ I had a big bag that I bought to place around my decorative candles, I used the left over.
1 package of 20 colors soft modeling clay ~ $1.89 at Wal-Mart
1 small piece of fabric that will be your tee pee.  You can also use brown paper bag.

I started off with telling Noah to place a layer of tacky glue covering the top of the lid.  He then placed the green felt squares.   He then pointed out where he wanted to have his river run.  The tacky glue was kind of hard to squeeze, so I put the glue where he wanted it and then he placed the small decorative pebbles down.  We then let that sit for awhile and started to make the Indians.  I made one and he watched.  He then made 4 others minus the hair, he was not quite sure on how to make it, so I made the hair and the facial expressions.
The next day he decorated his tee pee and then we constructed it.  You will need to take 3 rods together.  You need some yarn or string and tie one end to one dowel.  Then you just weave the yarn around in between the stick almost like a figure 8 but with one extra loop, finally you tie it together.  You should do this about 1/2 inch from the top of your dowels.  Make your tri-pod with the sticks and glue the fabric around.  I then cut the hole where his door was drawn.  I then hot glued his tee pee in place. 
I worked on his idea for the hide, tannery while he made a little Indian guy to do the tanning.   He wanted a fire, so he created that as well.  I made a little fish for the river.
Next we had to make the river.  Noah took the blue glitter glue and squeezed it over the pebbles that were glued the day prior.  Wah La... instant water flowing down the river now.  I then glued the Indians where he wanted as well as any other prop.
I love it!  He was so cute, I typed up his label and he told me I missed something, he then hand wrote under his name, with help by Mom.  What a sweetie!  He needed 20 points on his project to pass.  He ended up with 50 points and it is on display in the library.   His teacher told him that he has never seen someone so detailed with the modeling clay before and that he did a very good job.  He was just beaming when he shared this with me.

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