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Make reading fun for your kids


Early literacy begins way before children enter school.  Early literacy is what children understand about writing and reading before they can actually do it.   When reading stories is made fun and exciting, children become motivated to pick up a book or give a book to be read.  One way to make reading fun is to make an art project that goes along with the book.  All of the books mentioned can be found at a Baltimore library

The Pitter-Patter of Painted Feet

Materials:Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh, paint pots, pie pans, large white paper,  red, yellow,and blue paint

After Reading Mouse Paint, by Ellen Stoll Walsh, your child is guaranteed to jump feet first into this activity that encourages them to pretend to be mice instead of cats.  To prepare for this slightly messy mouse activity, spread a protective covering over the floor near your painting area.  Fill a tub with warm, soapy water, and set some old towls nearby.  Fill three different paint pots with red, yellow and blue paint.  Fill three different pie pans with the same colors.  Select some lively music to back up the fun.  Ask your child to roll up her pants, remove shoes and socks and pretend to be a mouse.  Direct her to use a brush to paint a red, yellow, or blue puddle of a large piece of paper.  Next have her step in the pie pan containing one of the two remaining colors.  As music plays, have children dance with painted feet on paper, swirling the colors together to create secondary color.  When done, have children wash and dry feet.  Now, that's a masterpiece that's quite a "feet"!  

For young artists have them use the same colors and same idea, but finger paints letting their hands do all the dancing. 

Whipped-Creamy Clouds

Materials: It Looked Like Split Milk by Charles G. Shaw, Whipped cream,  spoons and wax paper

Following these simple recipe directions will provide your little one with a delicious cloud like art project.  Provide each child with a piece of waxed paper and a spoon.  To make let children scoop out a large spoonful of nondairy whipped topping onto waxed paper.  Then let the children use their spoon to create a cloud shape.  Freeze each child's cloud; then serve them the art project.

Rice is Mighty Nice

Materials: Chicken Soup With Rice by Maurice Sendak, rice, food coloring, construction-paper, glue

Read it once. Read it twice.  Read it with chicken soup and rice!  Serve small bowls of chicken soup with rice to accompany Maurice Sendak's story in verse that features the months of the year and some pretty unusual uses for chicken soup.  As a follow-up, create rice collages.  Prepare the rice in advance by soaking it in bowls of water and food coloring for about five minutes.  Drain the rice and let it dry overnight.  Provide children with a construction-paper circle to represent a bowl of soup.  Encourage each child to squirt or spread glue on their circle as desired, then cover it with colored rice.  Any month of the year, art with rice is might nice!  Warning: This project is not suitable for artists under 3 years old.

You might also like: Encourage Literacy Skills Early - Teaching Math through Literature - Storyville - Poetry Month


  • Robert S 5 years ago

    A fine article! I can't wait to have my little man make some mouse art!!

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