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We built a zoo…

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out of recycling!

Inspiration often strikes when we have a billion tonnes of recycling to use up! After so many trips to IKEA recently, we have a serious surplus of cardboard. Whilst we always recycle, it seemed like a shame for these huge canvases to be immediately consigned to the yellow bin.

With another baby on the way, I’m not as up for massive messy projects (literally really, since I can no longer hoist myself off of the floor!) so we made use of the dining room table to make ourselves a zoo. This project was inspired byDiscovery Table Week 8: Zoo!

Here’s a photo diary of the process:

On Saturday we set about mapping out the zoo. My 8 year was eager to do this, drawing roads and animal enclosures with the help of a Posca pen.

zoo craft 5
Posca pens are well worth an investment. We LOVE ours!

By the end of day one, we had a basic outline of the zoo. As you can see, my 2 year old also made her contribution! When creating with very young children, I think it’s really important not to be too precious about the end result. I would much rather have Zoey involved and exploring materials than have perfect colouring!

zoo craft 6

On Sunday, the project really started to come together. Everyone had got over their colouring in fatigue from the previous day and using a range of crayons, pens and paints helped get the job done quicker. We started to add signs (using cut-off pieces of cardboard) and trees made from paper towel rolls and green foam.

zoo craft 4

All we really needed to do then was play! Our Grimm’s rainbow people became the tourist and the minature animal collection we had was also put to good use! If you follow us on Instagram, do check out the story we made on this project – I absolutely love the conversations Zoey was having between the animals and people!

zoo craft 3.jpg

 

Key Learning

  • Creativity: drawing, colouring and making all feature in this project.
  • Writing: my eldest wrote and spelled all of the words himself. On this point, let them spell words themselves – again this isn’t supposed to be about perfection!
  • Fine motor skills: drawing, cutting and writing.
  • Imagination: visualising what the zoo might look like, role play with the final results!
  • Language development: learning names, acting out roles, making animal sounds.
Sian Thomas

Sian Thomas

Sian is a trained teacher mama to three awesome children and wife to Greg. As a family of expats, they travel the world every couple of years for new adventures. Right now, they live in Vienna, Austria.

One thing Sian is super passionate about? Helping mums worldwide navigate the early years of parenthood.

You can join her on her brand new venture, This Playful Home, by visiting www.thisplayfulhome.com or clicking the email sign up button below!

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