Are you celebrating the Chinese new year next week? I like to observe celebrations from around the world with the children as I think it open their eyes to diverse cultures, showing them how people around the world are different but how the basis of many traditions are very similar too. We like to make Chinese style lanterns (which are perfect for practising scissors skills) and eating a Chinese meal. This year, which begins on 3rd February 2011, will be the year of the rabbit so here’s an idea for a craft you could try:
Potato Printing a Rabbit
We used potatoes and carrots to print with to make our rabbit. (Seems appropriate to use carrots, don’t you think?) Carrot printing is great for younger children as the carrots are just right for holding in little hands. Potatoes are a little more cumbersome to hold but you can make easier for the children to grasp if you cut out a handle into the top – as shown in the picture.
This rabbit design provides the opportunity to mix in some maths, as we thought about what shapes we could use to make our pictures. We decided to make a picture using just two shapes: circles and triangles.
I used a knife to cut out a triangle from the carrots, the potatoes were simply sliced in half.
We also talked about size as we used a big shape to make the body, ears and carrots and a small shape for the head, nose and carrot leaves.
We enjoyed having a specific project – working out how to form our rabbits and follow our instructions to create the pictures – but it was great to add in time at for some free style printing too, to see what other designs we could come up with using the circles and triangles.
How are you celebrating Chinese new year with your children?