Igniting Creativity in The Hive Classroom

How do we inspire our youngest artists? Our little ones need open ended activities and space and time to properly explore them. They need a wide range of materials and access to them. They need to be encouraged to push further and think deeper. And most importantly they need to be acknowleged not for their product but for their hard work and determination. Check out the incredible work our little artists have created in The Hive Classroom!

Open ended painting with corks and paint!
Creating with pipe cleaners!
When children have access to a wide range of materials the possibilities are endless!
Worried about going through materials too quickly? When children ask for tape, feathers, pipecleaners or other expensive materials, I like to ask the question, “What is your plan?” If children have a clear plan, I then ask, “How much do you need?” This limits waste and encourages children to have a creative direction.
Finding inspiration from peers.
Simple open ended painting.
The “Before” of one of our MOST favorite activities! Each cotton circle has a circle of paint under it….check out the “After” in the next photo….
The “After”: As each child uses the mallet to crush the cotton circle….and explosion of color is created!
Creating an ongoing collage in a box!
Simple box collage! Another easy way to do collaborative art!

A Collection of Halloween Treats!

Each year our teaching staff go ABOVE AND BEYOND to make the month of October extra special for our students. Our students this year have been thrilled to find each day full of interactive, hands on exploration of all that is icky sticky and creepy crawly.

Get inspired to bring the spirit of the season into your classroom and encourage your children to explore their favorite holiday in a whole new way!

What can you find in the Witches’ Brew? This sensory search was so much fun! Students loved trying to find and count out the different creepy crawly items!

 

A dollhouse is fun…..but a Haunted Mansion is even better! Simple touches create a whole new space and elevates the play!
Using Leaves as an art medium, inspires creativity and innovated thinking. Students made masterpieces by simply using leaves, markers and glue!
Orang felt pumpkins and black shapes are a great way to explore making Jack-O-Lanterns!
The Painted Pumpkin Roll! One of our favorite activities! Painting pumpkins and rolling them around on large sheets of paper to create prints, shapes….and a beautiful mess!
Using seeds and leaves to make a face!
Playdough and “Mr. Potato Head Pieces” are such a fun way to make unique and spooky monsters!
Inspired by Room on the Broom, students can use manipulates and counting cards to make their own story!
Make your own Witches Brew! What will you add? What ingredients do you need to make the perfect potion?
More Pumpkin Painting!
Another fun way to use the “Mr. Potato Head” pieces with Foam!
Providing scientific tools for pumpkin exploration elevates the activity and encourages students to take a closer look!
Pumpkin Prints! What does it look like when you paint a pumpkin and make art…..a gorgeous way to explore shape, texture and patterns.
Can you paint with a sunflower? What kind of prints will you get? What types of texture?
More Pumpkin Painting!
Using seeds in water trays for sensory exploration! Seeds, water, pinchers, measuring cups and bowls make a great sensory exploration activity!
Can you make a Mummy?! Simple cut outs and ripped up tissue paper make for a very simple Halloween Craft!
Encouraging children to make Pumpkin Shapes out of playdough using a premade laminated template and actual pumpkins for inspiration!

 

 

 

A Rainbow of Learning in The Den Classroom!

The Den Classroom has been on a Rainbow Aventure that lasted over a month! Each week they explored a different color of the rainbow and spent time studying the different shades and qualities of each. The activities they provided for their students were equal parts beautiful and engaging and helped ignite interest in all of their students. Take a look at this beautiful unit that started with the question…..what is your favorite color?

A beautiful way to document each child’s favorite color!
Asking each child the question, What is your favorite color during circle time!
Raibow Rice Sensory Bin! This table is almost TOO beautiful!
Color Mixing is such an important activity for young students. Providing each student with liquid water colors in the the three primary colors allows them to explore color mixing and sensory play….however, these teachers took it up a notch and added science materials that elevated the play and practiced those fine motor skills.
Explore the rainbow with a colorful mixture of dyed chickpeas, shapes and fruit manipulatives.
Organizing loose parts, building materials and figurines by color, ignites the imagination and completely changes the way students engage with the activity!
Rainbow Sensory Play! Shaving cream with water colors on top……just screams…..PLEASE MIX ME UP! This is always a favorite activity in our classroom!
Here comes the mess!
Can you make a rainbow that jumps off the paper?
Rainbow Bridges!
One of the really amazing activities The Den Classroom did this week were simple monochromatic tables that highlighted a different color each week. Students were able to explore one color at a time in a very intimate way. Each week the materials and color changed encouraging children to look closer at the table and use their imagination!
Rainbow Spagetti and Playdough Scissors! This is a great way to introduce scissor skills to your classroom if your students are not quite ready for scissors. We love using this activity at the beginning of the school year when students are first learning how to use and handle scissors.
More exploration with shaving cream…..How beautiful is this!
I love these small rainbow people figurines combined with blocks!

Love is in the Air……

Happy Valentine’s Day! Here are some outside the box ways to celebrate this often commercialized and gimmicky holiday! If you are like me you want to honor your students interests….but don’t feel the need to give in to the worlds cheesiest holiday….here are some fun ways we enjoyed Valentine’s Day this year!

What to do with those beautiful roses that your loved one gave you!? Turn them into the worlds best sensory table! Scissors, water and roses…..makes for an AMAZING sensory experience complete with smell, texture and some fine motors skills!

Creating love monsters inspired by one of our favorite books!
Fine motor skills, name recognition and handwriting in sprinkles! A fun way to practice our skills in a Valentine’s Day themed way!
Can you sort, count and graph the donuts!? This cereal lends itself to the holiday PERFECTLY! The colors are beautiful and they smell delicious! Our students loved using them to work through the different graphs and counting activities.
A simple invitation inspired by one of my VERY favorite children’s books…. My Heart is a Zoo! Such a sweet story that lends itself to so many fun activities.
Using three dimensional shapes with glittery pink water to explore volume, shapes and enjoy sensory play.