I drew a tangle person and Monkey coloured it in with her new gel pens.
Monkey was excited about making cardboard tube blocks as toys for Mungbean. Add washi tape and Monkey was focused on this cheap activity for an hour.
Monkey (formerly Child 1) spent about 30 minutes putting icing and egg-shaped candy on egg-shaped gingerbread biscuits. There is a plan to bake sugar cookies during these holidays so Mungbean (formerly Child 2) can enjoy them, too.
I put the contents on a roasting tray in an attempt to contain any potential mess. It worked this time.
(Thank you, B&M, for cheap, additive- and sugar-filled, decorating sets!)
So now Child 1 is very interested in the concept of Christmas. Last year we got away with no tree (our tree is a tabletop plastic number). This year she’s been excited about it way too early. These are a few of the things I’ve done to entertain her thus far.
Child 1 adores colouring, so I asked her to colour in our Christmas cards for this year (image from Made by Joel). But as I predicted, she didn’t do them all in one go, but over the last fortnight or so, she’s coloured 26 of them. That’s pretty good going!
I also got her practising her scissor skills cutting strips of paper out, so that we could make…
A paper chain Christmas tree!
Our ‘tree’ is made of plain coloured paper that we already have, and from Christmas-sy flyers that ended up in our mailbox. It’s adhered to the wall with masking tape. Cost of Christmas decorations so far: £0.00.
I knew Child 1 would need to do more to take more pride in the tree, as I was the one to really make the paper chains and ‘construct’ the tree, so I bought her some ribbon and bows (£0.89), and asked her to stick them on the paper chains to trim the tree.
Add a cheap string of lights (£5.99), and our Christmas tree is complete!
We have also coloured in Hattifant’s Christmas cones (Child 1 says she wants to bring the large one to preschool).
(We’re not total Grinches. We do have a turkey breast thing ordered for Christmas day, and the kids do get presents.)
There are a myriad of benefits to letting young children create via process art, and my reason for encouraging Child 1 — and Child 2, when I get it together enough to make her some edible finger paints — to experience process art is it makes her happy.
For us, it’s the best way to wind Child 1 down if she’s been over-stimulated, she loves paint that much — your mileage may vary (some kids don’t like getting their hands dirty).