Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Why I Am Not A Preschool Teacher

In my attempts to come up with art projects for the kids, most of the time I am scraping the bottom of a shallow pool of creativity.

Art Class usually goes something like this:

Me: "Who wants to color? Let's get the crayons out!"

A child: "I want to paint!"

Me: "Paint? Ummm, I think it's dried up. How about those crayons!"

I tell you, there's a waiting list for this type of dazzlingly simplistic approach to preschool art.

Yesterday, we thought outside the box, explored a new paradigm, plowed through an entire ream of business clich├ęs, if you will.

Gentle readers, I bring you the Nature Collage! No crayons were harmed or even touched during this process.

It started with a trip to the park. After the usual cavorting and endless rounds of swinging (or, rather, being pushed on swings -- when do kids learn how to swing by themselves, this lazy mother wants to know), we searched for things on the ground that could be used for a collage. Allie, who loves to collect rocks any time at all, could not be persuaded that pebbles are best suited for gluing on construction paper. Hence, her haul of boulders to the exclusion of anything else:

Even though she insisted these rocks would work just fine for her collage, I managed to discreetly place some other, more usable items in her basket. Sean was a bit more even handed during his hunt.

At home came the fun part: glue! We actually ran out of glue because of the glee and wild abandon with which Sean and Allie doused their construction paper with glue. And unlike our experience with other misguided attempts at creativity, the kids were both enthusiastic AND careful. And so proud of their work:

Sean's collage

and Allie's

Art class dismissed. My creativity pool has been completely drained. Check back round Halloween, when it might be replenished again.