It’s mid November and we’re all searching for exciting Christmas crafts to do with our students. One of my all time favorites would have to be some sort of split pin craft. Many people don’t quite know what I’m talking about when I mention the word split pin but as soon as you describe it to them, they remember them from their childhood. You know, the little pin that lets your creation move its arms or legs etc. I think most folks are also confused as to where to buy these delightful little pins but I’m pretty sure that most bookstores stock them, they’re generally in little boxes hidden in a corner somewhere and an added bonus is that they’re dirt cheap.
I am rather surprised that you don’t find too many split pin templates online. I thoroughly enjoy making them and my kiddies all do too. They love showing you how their little creature is able to move :). Today’s post is going to take you through how to make a split pin craft and then also walk you through our split pin pack. This pack is one of our first products we created when we set up Bonkerbots, or rather K and L as seen in the pics. That was our original name and logo. Cute right? I think this product is a classic and it’s always fun when Christmas time rolls round and I know I can whip these little guys out.
Ok let’s get started…
What you’ll need?
card stock / cardboard (thicker paper than regular)
That’s it. That’s all you need.
Simply print your template out onto card stock. I highly recommend this to ensure longevity with the end result.
Color your template in. I decided on the Snowman, although it was difficult to decide. I have colored in versions of each and will let my students choose which one they would like ahead of time. This builds up the excitement too.
Cut your snowman out using the guidelines.
Poke holes into the x’s. We used the tip of our scissors to help with this.
Attach the arms using the split pins.
What’s included in the Christmas split pin pack?
Each Christmas character requires 2 pieces of card stock. Don’t you think they look adorable? They all have such personalities. 🙂 Click on the link below to grab your own copy.
Oh my goodness! This little old lady who swallowed a fly craft has to be one of my favorite crafts that Keith has made so far. I remember the making of it. I had been searching for a copy of the book for ages, as it’s perfect for teaching sequencing and it’s such a bizarre little story…so when I finally tracked one down, I was beyond thrilled. Such a nerd.
There I was searching through Pinterest, looking for an activity but not finding exactly what I was looking for. So what does a teacher, who happens to know an artist do… get him to create your idea! haha! I really do love Keith’s imagination. His work is always unique and all his drawings have such character, like a proper back story. 🙂
Needless to say, the first time I whipped her out to my little Kindergartners, they were super excited and eager to take their own old lady home. It also got them retelling the story with confidence.
Craft = success!
They were able to cut theirs independently and just needed some assistance with sticking the plastic bag (zip log bag). We were able to buy a big pack of these for next to nothing, and it’s a handy thing to have in the office because they super versatile.
Color in the template. It’s always fun seeing how the kiddies bring theirs alive. I highly recommend printing this craft on thicker paper, AKA card stock / card board. It’s more durable, especially since kiddies can be rather rough with their work.
Cut the pictures out using the guidelines.
Cut the old lady’s inner circle.
Attach the plastic bag to the back of the old lady using scotch tape. Remember to keep top part open to insert animals and snip off any bits of plastic that are hanging over the edges.
Let the kiddies practice their story telling skills and feed the old lady some animals.
I hope that your little ones will have as much fun as we did in creating the old lady who swallowed a fly.
Oh my word! I ABSOLUTELY LOVE making food mosaics. I will make it work with any theme and boy, does it work. It doesn’t matter which grade I have made them with, from K- lower primary but they all ADORE it and are 100% zoned throughout. I am also always impressed with how well they follow instructions.
As Halloween is approaching, we will start making some really rad crafts. This year we have this cool FREEBIE for you, which you can grab at the end of the post. Be sure to check out our other Halloween Freebies too (Links at end of our post).
Doesn’t it look super duper cool?
Mosaics are really fun to make but the end result is pretty epic. The kids love working with the different textures and are super proud to show of their creation once they’re hanging up in the class.
What ya making?
You will need:
Board (card stock)
Yellow and orange lentils
You can totally change your ingredients to whatever is available and affordable. The ingredients I used are very affordable this side and most of them cost less than $2 for each pack.
Let’s get crafting!
The first thing you will need to do is ensure that all ingredients are easily accessible to the kiddies. I really enjoy these trays that I found in the supermarket. They’re a perfect size and I must say, I am always impressed at how little mess there is at the end. Don’t get me wrong, there is certainly a mess but not nearly as much as one might expect.
Normally my kids would be sitting in groups and they would share trays but we’re back at school, following strict guidelines so the trays will be slightly different now. I generally have the small white glue container for each table, wonderful opportunity for the little ones to practice their squeezing (great hand workout), although I also walk around with my glue to help those who need.
We go through the rules and then work step by step making our mosaics.
Once they have glued the goodies, they are instructed to lift it up to let the excess fall down. We generally let it fall on the ground, which we will sweep up once finished. Even though we’re making the same craft, it’s always fun seeing how unique they each turn out.
We also walk through how much glue is actually needed. Teachers are well aware, there are ALWAYS one or two kiddies that feel they must use the entire bottle of glue on their masterpiece 😉 but overall, they really handle it all with ease.
This year we have made the pumpkin template, bats flying with the moon in the background and a skull template. It’s hard to choose which one I like more as I think they turned out beautifully. I am also a sucker for making these. I find it rather relaxing;) haha 🙂 I get way too excited when doing these with the kids.
Sure…making crafts can be tiresome but it’s well worth all the prep and the pure joy in the faces while making it. 🙂
For the bats, I used basil seeds for the smaller one and black beans for the bigger one. I really like the effect it made.
Instead of only using one ingredient for the moon, I chose to mix the yellow and orange lentils and even added some popcorn seeds. Again, I am a big fan of how they turned out.
So whether you’re a parent creating this with your little one at home or a teacher making these with a class full of eager faces, I hope you have a wonderful time. I would also love to see how they turned out and which ingredients you used. 🙂
It’s always fun exploring new Grammar with my students. This week we focused on Synonyms and I was impressed at how quickly they absorbed the new vocab. As teachers, we always try our best to create interesting and active lessons. We’re great at multitasking. Eg: A busy teacher could be found printing new resources that she just created in Power Point, she’s using the guillotine (paper cutter, my non-teaching friends) while searching ideas on Pinterest and deciding what she should cook for dinner, with 5 dogs needing her attention. Oh wait… what’s that smell? Is that the laminator? haha
Well back to creating engaging lessons. As much as we prep (I’m speaking for myself here) and laminate like crazy to use things over and over again, which I most certainly do. I am still constantly creating new resources because:
You found this amazing idea on Pinterest (Dangerous yet exciting place)
You’ve forgotten where you stored those puzzles…
You want something new and know that your students will love it!
And isn’t what it’s all about? So what does this have to do with Synonyms? Basically I had a great action planned week for my students and was thrilled that they enjoyed all the prep. Below is a break down of our one day during our stations. Bear in mind that I am teaching in Cambodia. Some of my students are basically 1st language speakers. They’re confident and will happily correct a grammatical error I may have made and then there are some students, who are bran new to our school and to English. So when creating resources, I have to create a balance where it is challenging for my strong students but also helpful to my newer students. Basically what any ESL teacher goes through.
You can grab your free copy of the Synonym Template below.
So here’s what we got up to during our stations:
Station 1: Synonym Bingo Dab
I love creating Bingo Dab worksheets. They’re fun and get students excited about using something else other than a pencil or coloring pencils. If you have never used them before, I would highly recommend it. The ones that I use were bought by a very good friend of mine and that was about 4 years ago.
It’s easy peasy. Students just need to stamp the synonym to the word.
Station 2: Synonym Stenciling
This was a real hit with my kids as I don’t think they get to use stencils often, especially with color markers. Throughout the week we practiced 48 of the most common synonyms and it’s always rewarding watching your kids enjoying the learning process.
I love how focused they are!
Station 3: Synonym Stamping
I love whipping out the stamps and will use any excuse because they’re just great. My students felt the same way.
Station 4: Synonym Match Up
Our final station consisted of matching up our plants to the watering can. As I said previously, my students were practicing 48 of the most common synonyms, however, you could just choose which ones you want your students to use.
The Synonym Plant Match up is available in our store but grab your FREE copy of the Synonym Stations template.
We cannot believe it’s that time of year again! Christmas is around the corner and we have certainly had fun getting into the Christmas spirit. I love doing arts and crafts with the kiddies and so I’ll use any excuse to make something with them. I also LOVE doing Bean Mosaics and so VOILA, Christmas Snowman and Reindeer were born. Obviously, being in the tropics means our Christmas is a warm, snow free Christmas but our students understand all parts Christmasy.
Our School celebrates Christmas with a big party where each Grade performs their own song or dance. The School becomes filled with lots of little Santa’s and an ocean of red everywhere. I hung up their creations outside their classes in the corridor and they look mighty fab!
You could use a variety of resources in creating these. I just used what we had available here in store. Red beans are mad pricey this side so I opted for more budget friendly goodies.
What you’ll need: (This is what I used in creating ours)
Sago (for the snow)
Corn (for the nose) orange lentils would totally work
Mung beans (mistletoe on hat)
Black sesame seeds (hat, eyes and mouth)
Soy beans (lining on hat) However, lentils would also be great here. Just to break up the black on the hat.
White glue (PVA glue)
Black sesame seeds (eyes and mouth)
Watermelon seeds (nose and ears)
Corn / Soy beans (top part of face)
Brown rice (bottom part of face)
Mung beans (ears)
These projects are versatile for different age groups. My First Graders made the Snowmen and my Second Graders made the Reindeers. Each Grade had an absolute blast creating them. They were all extremely focused had no problem creating them independently. They were printed on board / card as the ‘beans’ do start to weigh a bit. The board / card supports them rather well.
Step by step
My First Graders followed step by step whereas my Second Graders were given a demo and worked independently. The PVA glue was in small bottle, which was perfect for them as they were able to practice their fine motor skills by squeezing the bottle.
2. Students took great pride in carefully placing their ‘beans’. I thought the class would be way messier afterwards but it wasn’t. When placing glue, you don’t need a crazy amount. Students squeezed the bottle and moved it around to spread it evenly. This worked perfectly and held ‘beans’ in place.
3. Once students added their ‘beans’, they placed the excess back in the container.
We were very pleased with our creations and I highly recommend doing this for Christmas. Not only are they getting a chance to be creative but it’s great for exploring different textures.
We hope you have a wonderful time creating your own!