It’s crazy that my kids are already a week out of school for the summer. With that begins the time of mom helping with some entertaining, some education and some fun. Two days out of school and we got into some crafts and educational fun to make sure the kids don’t start a Summer slide, also known as forgetting stuff.
We received an assortment of educational items for pre-K to Kindergarten, but I thought it would be fun to see if we could incorporate learning for all of my girls, ages 2-9 (aka preschool through elementary). And, we definitely had success with a watermelon craft and journaling/problem creation.
DIY Watermelon Craft for Toddlers – Elementary
Inspired by a Sax Paper Plate Craft Kit that came with plates, glue, paint, wiggle eyes, markers, glitter and even an instruction book (no paint brushes, though). We came up with a painting craft to challenge and engage all of my girls from 2 to 9 years old.
1. Color identification
With many colors in the kit, it was easy to go over all of the colors with the 2 and 4 year olds. They had fun naming them and telling us which ones to put on the plates to create the watermelon (green and black). They weren’t sure about what to do for the middle of the watermelon. But, the big sisters came to the rescue.
2. Cutting with scissors
This was perfect for the four year old to practice her scissor wielding skills. She’s great at cutting along a straight line, but even your kid’s not, it’s a great way to practice because it will look great regardless of how straight their line is.
3. Color mixing
The older two girls took care of the required paint mixing and made us some pink using red and white from the paints in the kit. We also took it as an opportunity to talk about the other colors we could make like purple, green and orange, some of which weren’t in the kit. We used some of these other colors to make our rainbows that helped with teamwork.
4. Brush Painting and Dexterity
All four of the girls had varying degrees of painting. The two year old ended up needing help painting the rind and flesh of the watermelon. I think she could have done it, but as with most two year olds, when she doesn’t want to do something, she doesn’t.
5. Finger Painting and Counting Dots
The littlest is working on her counting and she enjoyed finger painting her seeds on her watermelon. You’ll see below she lost interest in the dotting quickly, but she stuck around for the entire project. Sometimes, they are good for moral support. The four year old went “seed” happy and was happy to count all of the dots on her watermelon.
6. Story Telling and Math Problems with Fractions
Taking it one step further, I asked my seven and nine year-olds to write a story about watermelons in their Make a Story Journal. This journal lets children create their own stories, and has a title page, about-the-author page, and pages at the back of the book that ask them questions about their stories.
Something to get their creative juices flowing. Instead, they decided to do more and write a series of math problems. In fact, they did some addition and some subtraction and my seven year old even incorporated fractions. Since the watermelon crafts were cut in half, she totally took it there on her own. You could also cut the watermelon slices into smaller pieces and do quarters, sixths or eighths to challenge them further.
(And no joke, I had nothing to do with that dedication page!)
I love how their watermelons turned out and I love that they all worked together on the same project for a while. Surprisingly, this wasn’t very messy, either, even with four girls in a very small space. We just put down an opened cardboard box and had some paper towels handy and everybody was able to help with the cleaning.