Playtime: Green Activites & Art Projects for the Whole Family
I’ve got some exciting news to share today. A few month’s ago the folks over at FamilyFun Magazine asked me to design the “Go Green” edition of their Family Fun Badges, to be featured online and in print. “What’s a Family Fun Badge?” you say. They’re kind of like boy scout badges for families.
I really love how the whole concept promotes family time and creativity and was thrilled to have the opportunity to get involved. Also, I got a pretty great theme to work with.
As you can see, the badge has a monotone green motif to promote green activities. (Subtle right? There’s biking, upcycling, and even a nod to solar power in there.)
In the spirit of all that, I thought it would be fun to upcycle some of the materials I used for the badge to come up with a few more projects.
First up is this green “I spy” (or, if you prefer, “eye spy”) bottle. Can you spot which badge materials I used for this one? Of course you can, you’re a full grown adult – can your kids?
I took the inspiration of the plastic bottle tree and used a larger bottle as the vessel. Then I filled it with dried split peas (the grass on the badge) and green objects from around the house. The idea is to hand it over to the littles and challenge them to find everything hiding inside.
If you’re going to recreate this at home, make sure you take a picture of all the random stuff you put inside so the kids know exactly what they’re searching for in there.
Next up are several ideas for the yarn from the sun. Who knew I had such an affinity for yarn?
For the yarn you have several options. You could go camp classic and make a God’s Eye, which I couldn’t resist putting a modern twist on over at Make and Takes last summer.
Or keep it simple and wrap the yarn around mason jars, as I did here, to make pretty vases.
The originals were for Mother’s Day so I used cut flowers but planting seeds would be a great green alternative. Check out this guest poston five plant activities for the Montessori newbie for more inspiration.
Finally in the green yarn department, Easter is coming up and last year I used DIY yarn pom poms instead of plastic grass in myCreative Play Easter Basket.
On to the star of the show, our friendly dino. He’s plastic, so not super green, but since little critters like him are beloved by C and his friends I thought I’d include a few ways to reuse them (ok, not reuse – just a few ways to play with them).
Lastly, I couldn’t wrap up without mentioning sensory boxes. Sticking with the badge materials, the dried split peas would be great for something like this. And for the “going green” theme, check out my sensory veggie garden.
That’s it! I hope this has inspired you and your family to go green this month. If so, I’d love to hear just how you’re going about it in the comments.