Making more monsters

Ages ago one of my first posts was about making monsters.  Well, that interest is still going strong 3 years later.
This time they did pretty much all of the work.
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Cutting, stuffing, sewing, and all of that.  All we have left is to sew the final seam shut.  I had intended to have them hand sew it, but they REALLY want to use the machine.  I mean really really.

And that particular interest has lasted almost since I first got the machine when they were 2 years old.  See the blue tape on my machine?  That’s because at 2 they figured out you can stuff pins in there.  When I took my machine in for its first tune-up they found 20 something pins in there.

YEAH……….  I think it took them less than 2 minutes.  Then they did the patented scatter and run technique.

Story + Art= A Great Start!: Monster Musical chairs

I’d love to claim this was related to any particular book, but we read lots of monster books last week: Monster Musical Chairs, There’s a Monster in the Attic, and some various Halloween books. So, they were just itching to make a monster. And then I found a poem, or adapted a poem. I forget, and so we did both.

Materials needed: food coloring, coffee filter, stickers, shapes, markers, glue

Here’s our project:

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1. Get food coloring and let your kid have fun dieing the coffee filter. A word of caution do this on something you don’t mind getting stained. Really. Not the kitchen table.

Photobucket By the third kid I’d figured out to make sure you put a paper towel under the project. The paper towels were left over from cleaning up a spill from kid number two……. Oh, and this was a great chance to practice using a dropper.

2. Let the filters dry for a few hours. I told them to go put them in the bath tub. Princess disappears for like 5 minutes, and I’m wondering where she’s put it. She went downstairs and put it in my bath tub where she takes her baths……..

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Notice, again she’s stripped off her shirt, with yet another claim of “It was wet Mom.” 3. Take the dry coffee filter and glue it down. Now, see here’s where I was a good Mommy and let them do what they wanted. I was thinking you just glue down the whole thing and voila you’ve got a monster body, but NOOOOOOOO they went and chopped it up into all sorts of little pieces.

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4. Use obnoxiously large amounts of glue to glue it down. Paper is see through right?

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5. Then start putting on stickers to make various limbs. While Mom’s not looking start making lots and lots of monsters on all of the different pages and long convoluted stories about said monsters.

That was Superman’s story. I only caught about half of Batman’s story.

For more great story related ideas head on over to A Mommy’s Adventures.

Cheap, quick way to entertain a child in line

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The green thing on his finger is a hair tie. He spent five to ten minutes in the store using that silly little thing to chase people, run it up and down the store shelves, have conversations. At one point it was the “Icky bug,” which is also a new way to torment his sister. Want a screaming little girl? Have her big brother run at her with his arms up in the air, shouting at the top of his lungs “I’m an icky bug.”

But, I digress.

I bought a pack of hair ties from Target for $1. They came with 8 or so of these things, half of them with eyes. The ones with eyes I had thought to use for something, I have no clue what. Those are what led to our making monsters last year. Now, I’ve learned nice easy entertainment, random hair tie.

Monster book

I thought I had posted about this back when we did it a few months ago, but as I was looking for the post to send off to ABC and 123, I couldn’t find it. So, if I did I’m posting it again, but this time I have the printable for you to share.

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Here we are working on it.

You can adapt this to whatever theme you’re studying. Just make one page per number and put at the top 1 monster, or apple, or whatever. We used stickers I had made with my sticker maker, but obviously you can glue or draw.

I’ve also figured out since making this, that while little books look super cute. In reality it works much better to have bigger books, so I’ve changed the document to reflect that.

Monster Counting Book

Another book we made on monsters was to describe the monster we made. These are very simple books, but I’m basing this off of what we used to do when I taught first and second grade. These are great helps to early reading skills. So we make lots of books in our house. Sadly the pictures of us making these books have been eaten by the computer monster that lives in my computer, but I have it on good memory that they were very cute and filled with lots of green, blue, and pink (favorite colors in this house).

Oh, and I use construction paper as covers, it’s a bit more sturdy than copy paper and add a bit of extra color for visual interest without having to color the whole page.

This is My Monster

How to make a monster

Yes! I think I’ve finally figured out the new way to post pictures, so without further ado, I give you how to make a monster.
To start off, I wasn’t planning on making monsters for my kids, but they saw a hair tie I’d bought for Wendy and decided that we would use them to make monsters…….. So, off we went to Joann’s and we searched high and low to find the appropriate monster fabric. I convinced them that tulle would not work, but was not always successful in my attempts to disuade them from their choices, so here’s the picks:
Fabric chosen for monsters
Superman is on the left with a flame-resistant flannel festooned with sharks, or as he told me “It’s a Diego monster fabric,” that’s a whole other post. In the middle is Batman, he chose a black flannel backed satin type fabric, “I want a Batman monster.” Princess is on the right, she chose a super fuzzy fleece fabric, that I adore, “Princess monster,” picture that said in a high voice and yelled as loud as she can. Princess chose the only one I remotely thought was a monster fabric…..
Here’s the supplies we used: fun foam, pom poms, buttons, and fabric scraps
choosing buttons for eyes
Step one: Trace a monster pattern onto the fabric. Now let your kids try to cut out the monster, and then retrace the monster and cut it out yourself.
Step two: Let them look through the buttons and choose eyes.
Step three: Go to the sewing machine, and sew around the monster. Make sure to leave an opening to turn and stuff your monster. I left it in the side, because I like having a straight edge to hand sew. Clip any curves that you need to clip, I only clipped the curves by the arms and legs, I figured a misshaped head is part of being a monster.
cutting out ears
Step four: While you are sewing, give the kids some scissors and fun foam. They get to cut out ears. Princess mainly shredded her ears, but she had fun and worked hard, and that’s what matters at this point.
shredding ears
Step five: let your kid stuff the monster. Batman and Superman did this, but Princess had me stuff hers. This is a great fine motor skill activity. You probably will need to help steering stuffing into legs and arms, those are harder to do.
stuffing my monster
Step six: Sew monster closed. It’s important to do this before they play with it too much, or you will have to restuff it. Forgive the slightly blurry nature of the photo, it’s hard to take a picture of hand sewing……
gluing fuzzys on monsters
Step seven: Now the pom poms get used. You can sew it on by hand, or do as we did, and they had lots of fun gluing them on. This does mean they have a tendency to fall off, but I certainly wouldn’t have sewn on the 30 pom poms that Superman glued to the back of his monster.
I need lots of fuzzies on my monster
Step whenever: Oh and at some point you need to put the ears on. You can glue or sew them on. I sewed the ears on at a stop light, because I was tired of hearing nonstop questions of when they would get to have their ears put on.
Now, to make this more educational, this coming week we’re going to be reading lots of books about monsters and making monster games and all sorts of great monster activities. I’m in the process of making it all right now.