My example is our Planet Study that ... uhm... was supposed to last one day. With a toddler involved it all gets a bit crazy sometimes. So, I a would call this a "phase project".
- Phase 1 = We started with watercolors!! Yippee! My kids ADORE watercolors. I simply printed a coloring page with alll the planets for them. They painted these outside with their painting Tees on and then, we laid them in the sun to dry. Note: While the kids painted their planets I read a mini-book/coloring book to them that had information about the planets, asteroid belts, and meteors.
- Phase 2 = Time for some magic... simple magic!! I used two pages of white cardstock paper per child (use any sturdy paper... if I did it again I would use a file folder and skip having to staple/glue this in later). Back to the magic... you need paper, crayons, black tempera paint, paint brushes in that order... hide the paint untill you are ready for that if you have a Caden... Uh-hem... I mean, a toddler!! Have the kids make stars (which can be squiggles, circles, plus signs, etc.) all over their paper (or inside of file folder). These are going to be your stars for the solar system. After the stars are on, Give the kids the paint and brushes and let them paint over their stars and the whole page. As they paint the crayon wax will repel the paint and like magic their stars will appear!! These can be set in the sun to dry, also.
- Phase 3 = Time to cut out the watercolor planets! Have the kids cut them out along with cutting out a scrap of yellow construction paper if you want/need to add a sun. Assist smaller children with cutting... Let's just say I have a five year old that can slice and dice some tiny planets!!! I stapled the "night sky" to the inside of a file folder while the kids were cutting. Arrange and glue your Solar System to your night sky. I recommend school glue, because glue sticks might not adhere to the tempera surface. Let your globs of glue dry for several hours!! :)
- Tell them how great their Solar System art is!
We did NOT do this, but some other things that you could add too this would be to cut out numbers for the planets and glue them on to reinforce counting or number writing practice. You could use ordinal numbers (1st, 2nd, ...). You could use specific colors with color names. Whatever goes along with the theme.
I PLAN to use the front page of the coloring book for a front on Sierra's file folder (I will print and glue something to cover the words "Coloring Book" etc.. ). I will then use another blank file folder to insert the FOLDED pages of the coloring book like a mini-book. In this folder I will eventually add some other Solar System stuff. Savannah's file folder will become the back of the "book". If we want we will always have the option to add to this... as time allows... or maybe as my other little ones study this topic over the years. So, MAYBE THIS IS LAPBOOKING... I just know we can not do too much off this for time management reasons. It will have to be something that comes together as a "Phase Project".
We also did a Paper Plate craft. We used the Astronaut template and the Space Shuttle template. We changed it up somewhat by using Bingo Markers to dot paint one paper plate with blue and green to be our Earth. While this was drying the girls colored their Astronaut and Space Shuttle with markers and cut the pieces out. I used a point to pierce a tiny hole through their "earth paper plate", the end of the Astronaut and Shuttle templates, and a "blank paper plate". Using tiny brads we joined it all in that order with blank plate facing down. The original instructions do not include the blank plate, but I added it for stability and did not use cardstock fir my template pieces. I will have to try to post a pic of the finished product later.