Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Happy Easter!

Today I introduced Buffy the Hen and her amazing colorful chicks. Buffy is made from fleece and felt, and has a tube that runs from a hole in her back down to her bottom, so she can lay eggs.

I got the pattern from If you are into sewing, this blog has a host of ingenious tutorials and patterns, some free and some for sale. The chicken pattern is one that you have to buy.

It's a bit tricky, getting that tube in, but the resulting magic chicken is a delight. The little chicks are pretty easy to make---my 10-year-old granddaughter wants to try making one.

Our books today were all old Easter favorites: Max's Chocolate Chicken, by Rosemary Wells, Minerva Louise and the Colorful Eggs, by Janet Morgan Stoeke, and The Golden Egg Book, by Margaret Wise Brown. Here's our craft:

Ester Egg Magnets:

The eggs are cut out of foam sheets, and are about 6 inches high, although they could be any size you like. Cut out some eggs, and use the scraps to cut stripes.

You might want to put an adhesive magnet on the back before you start. That way the front won't be all gluey sticky when you go to put the magnet on.

Start by squeezing out some glitter glue and smearing it around with your finger. Then add stripes, stickers, and anything else you want to decorate with. Let it dry and then stick it on the fridge.  Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Book Club

The Orland Library Book Club for kids met today. I have 5 (or 6 or 7--depends on who shows up) 4th to 6th graders in the group. Our book this month was Dealing with Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede. All but one of the kids read it and enjoyed it, and a couple of them plan to read the rest of the books in the series.

We talked about:
How would you describe Cimorene? Kazul?
What was the funniest part of the book?
Do you know what cherries jubilee is?
Do you like fantasy?
Which cover do you like better, the hardbound or the paperback?

The cover vote was split 50/50. I'm a diehard Trina Schart Hyman fan, so I like the original cover, but the paperback cover, by Peter de Seve, is good too, with a great look of disdain on Kazul's face.

I didn't want to set fire to the library making cherries jubilee, so we had chocolate mousse for treat instead. (Princess Cimorene cooks both of these in the book.) The girls liked it; the boys would have preferred brownies.

For an activity we made Flubber (also known as Gack). Here's the recipe:

2 cups white glue
1 1/2 cups warm water
a few drops of food coloring

Mix the ingredients in a large bowl.
In a separate cup dissolve 3 teaspoons of borax in 1 1/3 cups warm water.

Add borax water to glue and stir. As you stir the mixture will coalesce, the water will be absorbed, and you will end up with a rubbery, bouncy, moldable, stretchable concoction.

It's a magical scientific experiment!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Readasaurus Rex Rules!

During the Orland Free Library's Centennial Week in February, I emptied the coins out of our Readasaurus Rex. I was quite surprised at how much money he had in his clear plastic tummy. Enough to buy three new picture books!

Today we celebrated by reading all three new books at storytime. We read:

Interrupting Chicken, by David Ezra Stein

Little White Rabbit, by Kevin Henkes

Worms for Lunch?, by Leonid Gore

Each book has a sticker in the front which says: "This READASAURUS REX book was donated by Orland Free Library children and parents." A few pennies, nickels and dimes at a time, and it all added up to three wonderful books.

Since one of the books had worms in it, we made wiggly worms for our craft.

To make a worm you will need:
A strip of craft foam 1" x 9"
A chenille stem (pipe cleaner)
Hole punch
Wiggly eyes

Round the ends of the foam strip. Punch a series of holes and thread the chenille stem trough the holes. Bend the stem at each end so it doesn't pull through. Add two wiggly eyes. Done!