Ready-To-Use Teaching Idea: Art/Music/Movement
- for base of hats: large plastic containers (yogurt or margarine), Styrofoam plates or bowls, shoeboxes
- child safety scissors and sharp "adult" scissors
- white drawing paper
- markers, tempera paint, brushes
- collage materials such as yam, pom-poms, wire, feathers, construction paper, tissue paper, foil, sequins, buttons, paper tubes, Styrofoam pieces, and small paper cups
- white craft glue
- yarn or string
Objective: Children will engage in a group celebration to foster social skills, creativity, and fine- and gross-motor development.
In Advance: Send a note home to tell families that the children will be designing funny hats. Request donations of materials to use as the base of the hats.
1. Explain to children that they will make funny hats. Collect and set out art materials and invite small groups of children to work in the art area.
2. Ask children to choose the base of their hat and how they want the hat to sit on their head. Will they put the open end of the shoebox over their head or sit it on top of their head with the open side facing up? Cover plastic containers with white paper and cut two small holes on either side of the base of the hat. Run string, yam, or elastic thread through the holes to secure the hat onto the child's head.
3. Encourage children to have fun and explore the materials and, if they wish, combine painting and drawing along with collage. They can cut and bend paper to create sculptured shapes to their hats. Small cups or separated egg cartons can be glued onto their hats to create fun textures.
4. Ask children to plan a Funny Fashion Show for families or another classroom. Children can make invitations and prepare a special snack. Prepare a special area for the children to use as their "runway" and encourage them to practice how they will "model" their hats. Older children can write or dictate a description or story about their hat to be read as they model. Let the Funny Hat Fashion Show begin.
5. Invite children to invent other uses for their funny hats. Ask: If your hat were a machine, what kind of machine would it be? Show us how your "machine hat" would work. What ways can you think of to turn your hat into a "helpful hat"? How would it work?
Family Involvement: Family Hats. Send a note home to families asking them to assist their child in learning and recording information about the kinds of hats that they have in their home. Ask children to compare their information. What are the different types of hats people have? Which family has the most hats or the least hats? What types of hats are used for people's work?
This activity originally appeared in the January, 2001 issue of Early Childhood Today.