Posts Tagged ‘creative arts’

Painting to Music

Set up outside for painting with musicI saw this idea on Facebook last week and just had to give it a go.  It’s quite a simple idea but gives the children a new way of looking at painting which in turn produces some fantastic results. Read the rest of this entry »

The Big Draw

October is the month of the Big Draw and this year the theme is “It’s Our World”. So, what is the Big Draw? Read the rest of this entry »

Neverland and Oz

I love May! Why? Because I’ve just found out that two famous children’s authors have their birthdays in this month, which allows me to indulge in some of my favourite stories. And, I’m sure they hold a place in your heart too. The two people in question are J.M. Barrie and L.Frank Baum – the authors of Peter Pan and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, but I’m sure you’ve already guessed that from the title of the blog. J.M. Barrie was born on 9th May, 1860 and L. Frank Baum on the 15th May, 1856. So, this is a great opportunity to introduce these wonderful stories to your kids.

These two classics have been made into films, audio books and there’s animated TV series’ too. So there’s no shortage of material for you to use in class. And the number of arts and crafts there are to choose from is staggering. Here’s a great little hand puppet project to get you started. And our felt remnants are perfect for the job.

Creating maps of Neverland is another fun craft idea. Here’s a great example – Neverland map – tea bags and tearing the edges of the paper are a great way to make it look old.

I know that the film The Wizard of Oz is a classic – one of the most viewed films of all time in fact. However, it differs significantly from the books. In the film Dorothy is depicted as a ‘damsel in distress’ who needs saving. But, she was originally written as the one doing the saving. And, the time she spent in Oz was real, not a dream!

If you want to listen to the original books here they are:

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz audiobook

Peter Pan audiobook

And, if you fancy a little sing-a-long (and we all know the benefits of singing for kids), here’s a video of ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ along with the text and another with the ever-so-catchy ‘We’re off to see the Wizard’.

Now, what do you imagine when I say Peter Pan? I bet you see a handsome young lad with a cute green outfit, pixie boots, pointy ears and a shock of strawberry-blond hair trying to escape from his cap. I’m not surprised, as that’s the image Disney created. However, J.M. Barrie never described Peter in detail – leaving it to the imagination of the readers. In fact, according to Wikipedia, Barrie describes him as a ‘beautiful boy with a beautiful smile, clad in skeleton leaves and the juices that flow from trees” – whatever that means! So, you could get the kids to draw what they think he would look like – I’m sure that would be interesting given the vagueness of that description.

I hope you have great fun using these two classics as the basis of some super arts and crafts. Do send us some pictures for our gallery – we’d love to see them. And you can win yourself a £20 voucher to spend on our site.

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Chocolate Part One

Easter is coming up and I imagine there’ll be plenty of chocolate covered fingers and faces for a week or two. But is chocolate something you really want to be giving your kids, especially in these times of growing obesity? Let’s have a look at the facts. Read the rest of this entry »

Yellow and Purple Multi Media Pictures

There’s a great walk near us in the Peak District where, in May, you’ll find the fields full of yellow cowslips and purple wild orchids. It’s stunning. And now the daffodils are in full bloom along with crocuses, forsythia and primulas. Read the rest of this entry »


We can’t get to this time of year without mentioning Easter. It falls on 20th April this year and will, I’m sure, be another egg-stravaganza (sorry about that, I couldn’t resist!) of chocolate, chicks, bunnies and simmnel cake. Mmm… can’t wait! Read the rest of this entry »

Paper Friends

Mark making with large child-shaped paper for the toddlers this week. And what fun we had. Read the rest of this entry »


April is NaPoWriMo – that’s National Poetry Writing Month for those who don’t know. As such, it’s a great time to get the kids to have a go at writing poems. Read the rest of this entry »

Early Years Printing

Often the first print children will make is a handprint. It’s easy and they’ll do it spontaneously when given the opportunity to play with paint. They’ll either dip their hand in the paint if it’s on a flat pallet or, carefully paint their hand with a brush before pressing it down on the paper. Then they’ll smile with delight at the mark they’ve made. Read the rest of this entry »

Mother’s Day

This is always one of our favourite days at Artful Dodgers, so we stock up on pretty things for the little ones to use in their creative efforts for their lovely mums. And, we gather them all together into one section, not surprisingly called Mothers Day, so you don’t have to go searching all over the place to find them. Read the rest of this entry »