This week’s theme at Discover and Explore is creating with natural materials. I’ve seen many gorgeous crafts with natural materials designed by very creative parents, but in our house I believe in more open-ended approach, especially when natural materials are involved. Since my daughter is not a crafty child, we always have more fun when an art project evolves on its own rather than planned in advance. Here are two open-ended rock projects that we did – about 3 years apart.
Painted rocks project was done shortly before my daughter turned 3. Even then she already had her own idea about what to do with her art. Looking back, I see that she taught me more than any book could not to focus on the product or on desire to blog about this or that cool idea, but on the process of creating and on the joy of being together. I still have a couple of these painted rocks to remind me to slow down and enjoy the process.
We did rock sculptures in the beginning of this year when Smarty was 6, a competent first grader who could be trusted with a low temperature glue gun. We had a “rock day” theme, and she was the one deciding what kind of art she wanted to do and how it’s going to look like. What I liked about this project is her determination to make it “just so” and her patience when she was selecting the right stones to balance her rock animal. The animal long since broke into pieces and returned to the garden, but the memories live on.
Want more? Head out to Discover and Explore and find fantastic ideas for creating with natural materials. I am looking forward to the next week’s theme that is near and dear to my heart – science experiments!