School vacation is the time when children can freely unleash their creative urges. Hobby classes apart, they would love more to color their hands with paint at home. So why not use this time and desire to paint in a useful and fun way? Select such activities which involve not only creativity and paints but which decorate your house too. Children feel proud when their art works are displayed for people to see. And if their work is part of their own home décor it gives them a sense of achievement and responsibility. You can select simple yet useful self help activities like painting the house grills, old tables or polishing the wooden furniture. Paint all your plant holders, pots etc. in the normal earth color or in any artistic colorful way.
The rule for parents should be – ‘don’t teach them, do with them’ as I emphasized in my earlier article (Importance of active interaction with toddlers). This way they learn to do little things for home themselves. They will feel and develop a sense of responsibility if you do with them. When parents are an equal partner in the endeavor, the kids feel themselves to be an important part of the family, helping their parents and unconsciously learning many things too.
Art out of waste-
Turn your old earthen surahis (water holder) and matkas into art pieces for your drawing room. Wash them clean and let dry. Once the surahi is perfectly dry paint it with oil paint. You can paint it with multiple bright colors or paint it plain and then create some picture on it; or it can be decorated with small mirrors, glitters etc.
Paint old large Diwali diyas (earthen lamps) and earthen pots and plant some decorative plants in them. Plants can also be grown in coconut shells and old decorative jars.
Use your old fish bowl for a bottle garden. Put one to two inch layer of gravels, followed by a layer of the same dimension of sand. At the top will be soil in which small decorative plants can be planted. The layers of sand and soil are essential because the glass fish bowl cannot have any other outlet for water. Some decorative artifacts can be placed inside the bowl. The soil should just be moist for the plants to survive. Do not overwater or cover the bowl.
Photo frames- Take a rectangular piece of cardboard. The size will depend on the size and number of pictures you want to display on it. Cut out a frame from another piece of cardboard, the same size as that of the earlier one which will serve as the back. The frame can be decorated in various ways. Crumple aluminum foil and then open it. Cover the cut out frame with this crumpled foil and then paste it on the rectangular back piece. When pasting the frame to the back, apply glue only to the outer edges of the frame so that there is space for inserting the photographs. Crumpled foil gives a metallic effect. The frame cut out can also be decorated with colored handmade paper, glitters etc.
Old grandmother’s trunks can be painted to match the room’s general décor and used as part of seating arrangement.These practical activities are interesting and useful at the same time. Other than these, sit with the kids and watch programs like MAD on Pogo and Art Attack on Disney channel. Create things together and enjoy the vacations.