Feb 12, 2016

Toddler Art Class: Cheerios on Chenille Stems

We've been here before....

Art Project: Cheerio bird feeders (or snack bracelets, whatever!)
chenille stems (pipe cleaners)
Cheerios (I used the Multigrain variety here so that there would be several different shades of tan in case someone wanted to try making a pattern.  No one did and these are sweet like Honey Nut Cheerios, so MANY of them just got eaten.  Not sure if that would have changed if they were the plain kind instead.)
Small cups to hold individual portions of cereal

cover art Snowy, blowy winter / Raczka, Bob
This book includes one 2-page spread about feeding the birds in winter.  It also happened to include a groundhog which was perfect since we did this class on Feb. 3 (okay, it would have been even BETTER on Feb. 2, but oh well).

Inspired by: Free Fun at Home in Austin

What Kids Do:  ask their grown-up to hold the pipe cleaner for them.

 Hold the pipe cleaner and the Cheerio on their own.
 PACK those Cheerios on!

 I was especially impressed with the ingenuity of this young artist who figured out for himself that it might be a good idea to create a "knot" at the end of his pipe cleaner so that the cereal wouldn't fall off.
 When you're all done (whenever YOU decide that is), bend it into a shape.  Here's a triangle:
 And here's a circle that makes a handy snack bracelet. There was a LOT of snacking going on (yay for multi-sensory craft exploration!).

Hindsight Tip:  having individual cups of cereal was a definite improvement over the last time we tried this project.  Less germy worries or getting mad because someone else was using all your O's.

 Variations to try: 
Give up on the whole "this will be a birdfeeder" ruse and you could thread other things like Froot Loops or dried pasta. Chenille stems really are the perfect first threading experience!

Adult Challenge:  Big hands off the art! A nice reminder for a new set of Toddler Art grown-ups that this class is more about process than product and if you make your child's art for them, you rob them of that process even if you end up with a "perfect" looking finished product. 

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