Renaissance Mama

{Made for Learning} Finger Paint

Do you remember finger paints when you were small?  I remember having little pots of paint, the cool semi-gelatinous texture, and a distinctive smell, not unlike play-doh.  I was five years old.

Finger painting is a wonderful way to introduce little ones to making art.  They have better control of their own fingers than they do a paint brush, and helps them to build a muscle memory of the way certain objects are formed in two dimensions.  Finger painting is an excellent way to re-enforce letter and number formation. It is also a wonderful way to teach children to mix colours.

As they get a little more advanced, finger painting can be a useful introduction to early figure drawing.

Of course, the extent of wonderful artistic activities is only limited by your imagination.  We’d sure love to see what you and your children make with your finger paints!

You’ll need::

  • 1 c. cornstarch
  • 1 c. grated soap (we use plain olive oil soap or goat’s milk soap)
  • 3 c. water
  • 1T. glycerine or white sugar
  • food dyes (we use India Tree plant-based food dye)
  • saucepan
  • bowl
  • wooden spoons
  • 3 flip-top squirt bottles

Also handy::

  • paint pallets
  • pad of large art paper

Gather your supplies... and your little helpers.

 

Pour your cornstarch (cornflour) into the pot...

 

and your sugar...

 

... and add 1 c. of water.

 

Stir and stir until completely dissolved.

 

Grate the soap

 

Luminous curly soap noodles (ours smell like sandalwood)

 

Add the soap curls to the pot.

 

Place pot over medium heat and stir constantly. As the mixture thickens, add as much of the remaining 2c. water to make the gel workable.

 

When it's ready, the mixture will be light and fluffy.

 

Divide the mixture evenly amongst 3 bowls (or however many you want).

 

Add food colouring to each bowl. We used 40 drops each, and obtained soft colours. Your results will vary depending upon the food colouring you choose. Paste colurants will give you the most vibrant colours.

 

Keep stirring until the colour is even.

 

Pour paint through a funnel into your bottles. Remember to thoroughly rinse the funnel between colours.

 

Pretty!

Take out the paper and fill the wells of the pallettes.

 

Magic time.

 

These finger paints can also be used in the bath!  Since they are soapy, they are also washable.  Lovely!

 

 

Conquering a Mountain

 

“You can never conquer the mountain. You can only conquer yourself.” – James Whittaker {mountaineer}

My to-do list is growing and growing.  There’s something about the beginning of the year, isn’t there?  I mentioned some of the things I had to do here.  And I started pondering some of the other things I want to accomplish this year:

Learn to speak French

Learn how to take better photographs {I’m so serious about documenting our life.  I am pretty sure that I need a new lens.}

Get some more curriculum written.  It may be my grandchildren who use it, but there we are…

– Get through all of the recipes in Mrs. Beeton.  {no, seriously}

– Design and sew some clothes for the family.  I’m so weary of trying to find things that fit both our bodies, and that are my notion of good-looking and practical.

On the Farm: Design our veggies gardens and feed crop fields, schedule tapping for the birches, and decide what to make the remaining trees into.

– Try to come to some conclusion about changes to one of our businesses.

Schedule some workshops, talks, and classes at the farm {cooking, sewing/handcrafts, kids’ classes…}

– Put together an apprenticeship/intern program on the farm with the Office of Youth Ministry.

– Decide how much (if any) wedding business I want to pursue this year.

– Make it all pretty and practical.

– Have myself duplicated, or call on  {a LOT of} help from my friends…or lower my expectations and accept this as more of a wish list than a to-do list…

What’s on your wish list for 2012? 

 

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