Friday, October 15, 2010

Hand Print Fall Trees

This is the third Autumnal project I've done so far that has involved leaves and I'm starting to think that I have a slight obsession with this thing they call "Fall Leaves".  This Florida girl thinks it's all a myth!  I have seen no such thing as Fall colors and the "changing of the leaves" ;-)  Anyway...this is a beautiful, fun & messy project for the little ankle-biters.
This is the idea...
  • Large piece of medium weight paper: We used white poster paper (you can find this at most stores where school supplies are sold).
  • Paint brushes: One for painting the tree trunk (medium to large bristle tip) and a few smaller brushes to blend your colors.
  • Tempera paint: brown for the tree trunk and 3 to 4 Fall colors...we used green, red and yellow, but I wouldn't be mad at ya if you threw in a beautiful purple color too. 
  • Paint trays: I wash and re-use my styrofoam meat & produce trays from the super-market.
  • Hands!

[1.] Mix your paint - 
In a small cup or tray add your brown paint.  Have separate trays for your leaf colors...I added a tiny dab of brown to my green and red paint to make them look less like Spring and more like Autumn, but left the yellow as is.

[2.] With the brown paint and paint brush, demonstrate (on your own paper) or describe how to paint a tree trunk...sure that seems a bit simple, but I always took time before my class actually started the project to go over the main idea of what we are trying to doesn't matter what the child's tree trunk actually looks like.  What matters is that the child is painting with a purpose or idea in mind.  You could take a moment to go outside and look at different trees and discuss the trunks...

[3.] After the trunks are painted, remove the brown paint and paint brush from the equation and place the trays of colors down.  It's messy hands from here on out...  Have your child place their palm into a color and make handprints (these are the leaves) all over the top of the tree trunk...or wherever they feel their leaves should go.  Re-fill paint colors if needed.
My little helpers Sam & Molly

Sam decided to use his finger-tips to make small leaves on all of his branches.
And here are the finished pieces of gorgeous Ankle-Biter Art....
Fall Tree by: Sam
Fall Tree by: Molly

Have fun & get messy! ~ "Miss Jenna"

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