When someone spends a week or so confined in the hospital (in this case, my father--he's confined and fined for smoking; he's fine now), chances are you'll have baskets and baskets of apples and later on, bins and bins of the foam wraps that go with them. Here's a before-the-bin activity we can do with those foam wraps (I just love it when things like this get repurposed).
WHAT WE NEED:
- Foam wraps that usually go with apples, the ones with holes
- Construction paper, cut in rectangles, 3x2 inches (We only need a small piece of paper so as not to overwhelm the child, feeling that they'd have to fill an entire sheet. If you feel that your child might need a smaller-sized paper, go ahead and prepare that for him/her.)
- Paint (Be sure to check the consistency as always. We want it thick yet spreadable for this work.)
- Pencil (1 for each color of paint we'll use. We may start with 2 colors first--easier to prepare and manage. It was easy enough to clean and resharpen mine after, so we can still use the pencils for regular writing work.)
- Newsprint (2 sheets; one for our paint containers and pencils, another for our foam wrap and paper as you'll see below.)
We'll start by cutting the foam wrap so that it's just a little bigger than our 3x2 construction paper.
Tape the left and right sides of the foam wrap onto a newsprint (I didn't tape the top and bottom so that it will be easy to just slide paper in and out). Stretch the foam wrap so that the holes will be more distinct.
Choose a construction paper that is of a different color from that of your foam wrap so that it will be easier for the child to see, particularly if you are just starting out with this work.
Dip the tip of the pencil into the paint. Make sure that to get enough so you can tell the child to count up to five while making small circles in your paint container so that there'd be enough paint on your pencil tip.
Choose a random hole on the foam wrap and just put the pencil tip right through. I ask the child to make small circles inside the hole to make nice impressions on the paper. This is also an excellent exercise for the fine motor--gripping the pencil and making controlled circular stokes within the hole.
Ask the child to hold down the corner of the paper so that it will not move--they'll have to this too when writing.
When done, just slide the paper out or take out the foam wrap and let the work dry.
Oh, and in case you're wondering about the cats...
I found Tobi in one of the empty apple baskets.