Native American Cuff Bracelet Craft

nahm-2016-cuff-bracelet-craft

My girls love jewelry, they love making it, so I decided to teach them how to make an easy Native American Cuff Bracelet Craft.

It is the Native American Heritage Month and we have been looking at different books and stories about Native Americans, that gave us a little insight into their culture and traditions.

Cuffs were worn by both women and men. They were made of some metals – usually silver, gold, often decorated by beautiful stones. There were also gorgeous beaded bracelets, colorful with unique designs.  And they have beautiful ornaments representing different symbols: protection symbols, animal symbols that represented friendship, companionship, love, freedom, and more.

We have simply Googled what typical Native American designs would look like and we found a whole bunch of beautiful ones here.

Before I proceed sharing our craft with you, I have to add a very important note: the following research and craft was made to honour thousands years old cultural heritage of Native American people. It is not meant to be any sort of cultural appropriation, neither to offend anyone. This blog is created for education purposes and, though, we probably will never be able to completely blend in one culture or another, we can help educate our children about the world with the attempts to make the learning process fun and exciting!

So, how did we make our gorgeous bracelets?

You will need just few tools that you probably already have at home:

Toilet paper rolls

Crayons / markers / paints

If desired – pieces of construction paper cut into different shapes

Glue

Scissors

Process:

  1. Take toilet paper roll and cut it into two parts.
  2. Cut the parts to make openings and try fitting them now on your hands – they will look like cuff bracelets.
  3.  Choose a design. You can first make it by drawing it with a pencil. Color your design
  4. If you like, you can make the designs by cutting the shapes (diamonds, triangles, ovals, and others) out of colorful construction paper and gluing them on your bracelet.

You can now make more bracelets to place on the arm, and even ankles!

I would love to learn together with my girls how to make beaded bracelets. Perhaps, next year??

 

Native American Heritage Month | Multicultural Kid Blogs

Welcome to our third annual celebration of Native American Heritage Month! All month long we’ll be sharing posts about sharing these rich cultures with kids. Find our full schedule of posts below, and don’t forget to link up your own as well! We’re also having a giveaway (see below for details and to enter!) You can find even more ideas on our Native/Indigenous Cultures Pinterest board:

Follow Multicultural Kid Blogs’s board Native/Indigenous Cultures on Pinterest.

November 4
Open Wide the World on Multicultural Kid Blogs: Native American Heritage Month and Free Trilingual Printable
November 9
Kid World Citizen: Learn about the Seminole Indians

November 11
Colours of Us: 32 Native American Children’s Books

November 14
Crafty Moms Share: Native Americans of Cape Cod and Massachusetts

November 16
Crafty Moms Share: Review of Some of the Prizes

November 18
LarabeeUK: FUN|native American Small World Play

November 21
La Clase de Sra. DuFault on Multicultural Kid Blogs: 10 Interesting Facts About the Mapuche

November 23
Gianna the Great: Halito, My Friends

November 29
All Done Monkey: Nazca Lines STEM Project

November 30
Creative World of Varya : Native American Cuff Bracelet Craft

Giveaway

Grand Prize Native American Heritage Month Giveaway 2016 | Multicultural Kid Blogs

 

Grand Prize

From MotherTongues: Himdag Walk in Balance T-Shirt (women’s or unisex, S-XL) US & Canada shipping only
From Quarto Knows: Native North Americans by Joe Fullman & History of Indian Tribes of North America, 3 Volume Set by McKenney and Hall US shipping only
From Abrams Books: Sitting Bull: Lakota Warrior and Defender of His People by S.D. Nelson, In the Footsteps of Crazy Horse by Joseph Marshall III, & Hiawatha and the Peacemaker by Robbie Robertson & illustrated by David Shannon US shipping only

1st Prize Native American Heritage Month Giveaway | Multicultural Kid Blogs

1st Prize

From Firefly Books: Ojibwa: People of Forests and Prairies, Iroquois: People of the Longhouse, & Encyclopedia of Native Tribes of North America all by Michael G. Johnson US & Canada shipping only
From Daria Music: Set of 2 Dance Whistle Kits from Crazy Crow Trading Post US shipping only
From Wisdom Tales Press: Red Cloud’s War: Brave Eagle’s Account of the Fetterman Fight by Paul Goble & Indian Boyhood: The True Story of a Sioux Upbringing by Charles Eastman (Ohiyesa) US shipping only

2nd Prize Native American Heritage Month Giveaway | Multicultural Kid Blogs

2nd Prize

From Wisdom Tales Press: Indian Boyhood: The True Story of a Sioux Upbringing by Charles Eastman (Ohiyesa), Custer’s Last Battle: Red Hawk’s Account of the Battle of Little Bighorn by Paul Goble, & Horse Raid: The Making of a Warrior by Paul Goble US shipping only
From Interlink Books: Pocket Timeline of Ancient Mexico by Penny Bateman US shipping only
From Kid World Citizen: Machu Picchu Lesson: Teach about the Incas in Peru! Reading, Crossword, Coloring (English & Spanish versions)

 

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Native American Shawl Inspired Craft {NAHM 2015}

Learning about Native American culture with young children can turn into an interesting adventure.

We are now in a month that honours Native American Heritage and even though we have no direct ties with this cultural background, we still give a great deal of attention passing onto generation how amazing Native American culture is in many ways.

So far my children have only encountered anything Native American through Pocahontas cartoons. There isn’t  much there revealing the culture besides some clothing and closeness to nature.

Since my girls love drawing, coloring and dressing up, I decided to introduce them to Native American dance shawls and created a simple but fun craft for them that encouraged them to ask more questions about Native American culture.

Materials needed:

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2 old sheets or pieces of plain cloth (we had some crib mattress covers which we used)
Scissors, if necessary
Fabric markers, stamps or paints
Fringe (optional, and for much older children – we didn’t use for this craft)
Cardboard

Process:

1. Lay the sheet over the cardboard – it is easier to draw and color!

2. Let the children decorate the fabric.

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3. Tie the fabric around shoulders or body and using some Native American music let your spirit dance!

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Optional:

1. Decorate the sides of the shawl with fringe. You can make it out of a yarn or a thicker crochet thread. Or get the ready-made. You would need a needle and thread to stitch them onto the fabric; or make holes and tie them.

2. Make headbands out of the fabric: simply cut a long chunk of fabric , decorate it and tie on the head.

I hope you enjoy this simple craft while learning about Native American Heritage!

Native American Heritage Month | Multicultural Kid Blogs

Welcome to our second annual celebration of Native American Heritage Month!  All month long we’ll be sharing posts about sharing these rich cultures with kids.  Find our full schedule of posts below, and don’t forget to link up your own as well!  We’ll also be having a big giveaway (details coming soon!)  You can find even more ideas on our Native/Indigenous Cultures Pinterest board:

Follow Multicultural Kid Blogs’s board Native/Indigenous Cultures on Pinterest.

November 2
Castle View Academy on Multicultural Kid Blogs: The Elders Are Watching

November 4
Kid World Citizen: Visiting the Wounded Knee Museum with Kids

November 6
Hispanic Mama

November 9
Crafty Moms Share

November 11
Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes

November 13
Tiny Tapping Toes on Multicultural Kid Blogs

November 16
The Mommy Factor

November 18
Creative World of Varya

November 19

Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes

November 20
Crafty Moms Share on All Done Monkey

November 23
Castle View Academy

November 25

Crafty Moms Share

November 27

Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes

November 30
Back of the TapTap

Enter Our Giveaway!

Native American Heritage Month Giveaway: Grand Prize | Multicultural Kid Blogs

Grand Prize Package

Tribal Nations Map

From Five Star Publications: Nanisé, a Navajo Herbal (US Shipping Only)

From Jeff Altabef: Wind Catcher & Brink of Dawn

From Wisdom Tales Press: The Hunter’s Promise and Thunder Egg (US Shipping Only)

Native American Heritage Month Giveaway: First Prize | Multicultural Kid Blogs

First Prize Package

$50 Gift Certificate to Zazzle

From Groundwood Books: Sometimes I Feel Like a Fox, P’ésk’a and the First Salmon Ceremony, and The Outside Circle

From Wisdom Tales Press: Red Cloud’s War (US Shipping Only)

Native American Heritage Month Giveaway: Second Prize | Multicultural Kid Blogs

Second Prize Package

From Daria – World Music for Children: Handmade owl pottery from the Jemez Pueblo (US Shipping Only)

From Birchbark Books: The Birchbark House (US Shipping Only)

From Candlewick Press: X-Indian Chronicles and I Am Apache (US Shipping Only)

From Wisdom Tales Press: Pine and Winter Sparrow and Whispers of the Wolf (US Shipping Only)

Bonus Prize Collage

Bonus Prize Package

From Candlewick Press: The Aztec News and Starfields (US Shipping Only)

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Link up your own posts on sharing Native American heritage with kids!

ABC Herbarium

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This is last of the 5 days series Fun Ways to Play with ABC’s – Natural Materials – hosted by Something 2 Offer.

I chose making a herbarium as my theme as we often pick up leaves and flowers and make craft with them or preserve them in various ways.

Our recent herbarium was intended for practicing letters of the alphabet. It can be complicated to practice writing words and  sentences. And, as a great gift idea – birthday or anniversary  wishes.

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Materials needed:

Almost dry leaves or fresh fallen leaves
Scotch tape
Scissors
Cereal box
Marker
Color contact paper (green here)
Transparent contact paper (optional)

Process:

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Contact paper and leaves ABC’s
1. Cut out squares or rectangles out of the cereal boxes and stick the leaves on them with the scotch tape.
2. Draw letters on contact paper and cut them out.
3. Stick the letters on the leaves. These will make pretty ABC cards. You can use clear contact paper to preserve them for longer period of time.

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Leaf ABC’s
1. Draw your letters on leaves with a marker.
2. Cut the letters out and cut out squares from cereal box.
3. Stick the letters to the cardboard with scotch tape.

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Writing on leaves
1. Secure leaves to cardboard as mentioned above.
2. Write with a marker on top.
To preserve, use transparent contact paper.

Voilà, you just upcycled and recycled your cereal boxes and natural materials!

Please visit the landing page for Natural Materials to get more  ideas!
Thank you for following us!

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ABC Mobile

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Summer is almost over and in many countries children are starting going back to school. For us school starts on September 1st so we are spending the rest of the summer enjoying various activities.

I am happy to participate in 5 days series called Fun Ways to Play with ABC’s hosted by Something 2 Offer. In this series for the next 5 days we will introduce various ways to plays with ABC’s, each day for a different age group.

For the first day, I am introducing an ABC mobile I made for infants, in a category of Homemade Ideas. At the end of my post I will suggest easier ways of making this mobile.
Mobile toys are one of the first interactive toys babies may see. There are so many on the market: with or without music; wind up ones and battery operated ones; ones that move and once that don’t. You can also make your own mobiles and it is super easy.

For this ABC’s mobile I used the following materials:
Upcycle fabric (mine is leftovers from the fabric I used to make a dress for my daughter; you can use an old pillow case, sheet or dress)
Scissors
Craft ribbon
Double sided tape
Isolation tape
Wire hanger
Threads
Needles
Sewing machine
Old teddy bear (or pillow) for stuffing

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Method:
1. To make the base for the mobile:
– You can use an old hanger made from thinnest wire. Bend it into a circle, triangle or square.
– To secure and make it look better, tape over with an isolation tape. Mine is of a pretty red color! Set it aside.

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2. To make the letters:
– Decide on the size and trace the letter on a piece of folded fabric so you have 2 sides which you need to stitch together.
– Stitch the sides by hand or using sewing machine, leaving space to put the stuffing through.
– Stuff it and stitch the opening. Repeat with the rest of the letters

Easier version: use felt or thick carton to cut out your letters. In the case with carton you can use sticky craft paper to decorate over.
– Using craft ribbon, cut out stripes. In my case to make it thicker, I used double sided tape and folded the ribbon into 3 and secured it. Then stitched by hand to the letters.

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3. Assembling the mobile:
– Using double sided tape, stick a piece of it to the other end of the craft ribbon you just stitched to the letter.
– Fold the ribbon over the mobile, securing the edge with tape on it so it is tightly wrapped around the circle. Secure all the letters.
– Using a larger piece of craft ribbon, repeat the same process with double sided tape in order to make a “handle” which you will use to hang the mobile (see the very first picture at the beginning of the post for reference.)

I would suggest not to put more than 3-4 letters at a time. You can change them weekly and hang above the baby’s crib during his awake time. While talking to the baby you can also name the letters to him.

One great thing about the letters I made, once child is older they can be given to.him to play with – simply detach and cut off the ribbon.

Some ideas for stuffing: to make it much safer and completely allergy-free, use pieces of fabric for stuffing.
To ensure better sensory experience once the child is able to  hold the toy, you can add some beans inside with the stuffing.
Supervision is required, especially if you stuff beans inside.

Please visit our Landing Page for Homemade Ideas to read more posts from other participating blogs!

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Salt Painting Techniques

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This year I am taking time to collaborate with more projects that are in tune with my blog’s themes.

This month I am participating in two series. One of them is Painting Challenge: Fun Painting Techniques organized by Messy Little Monster.

I chose to work with Salt Painting Techniques. It is a very fun way of painting and it offers a unique sensory experience.

Supplies needed:

Construction paper
Brushes
Water paints
Liquid glue (we made a homemade glue)
Stick glue
Salt
Colourful chalk

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CWOV

Preparation:

Since we will need colourful salt one way to dye it is to rub pieces of chalk against it. This way your salt will be dry and keep longer. The salt we used has been kept in an airtight jar for over 2 years!

Technique 1:

It is done with stick glue and salt. You can read more about it in one of my previous posts.

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Technique 2:

Using liquid glue, make splashes on the paper. Generously apply Colored salt. Fold the paper into half, wait few seconds gently pressing on the surface. Now open for the result!

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Technique 3:

Apply liquid glue on the paper. Sprinkle white salt over. Now, take the water paints and drip over the salt. The paint will spread on the salt and glue creating

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Please check all previous posts on painting techniques!

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Special Guest Thursday: Making Clothes For Your Toys {Trilingual Children}

This Thursday is the last one of Special Guest Thursday series and I have a very special guest over – Galina from Raising a Trilingual Child. Galina is originally from Russia, just as I am, and she is also raising a multilingual family. We are both members of MKB. The tutorial below is a gift from Galina for the birth of our third baby and I am more than happy to share it with my readers!
photo portraitGalina is a mother of two charming kids, whom she is raising trilingual in Italian, Russian and English. She loves helping other parents whose children have stepped or about to step on the the road of bilingualism or multilingualism.  Visit her blog Raising a Trilingual Child and connect with her on Facebook — Google+ — Twitter —  Pinterest
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Making clothes for toys

It’s been a very unusual summer in Italy where we live. It started to rain in June and it still rains a lot in July.  Hardly  ideal summer weather, if you have two kids to take care of, as any outdoor activities are off the list.
One day I was running out of ideas – we did everything we could and  my two kids were getting bored.  Then my eyes fell on a pair of old pants that I was about to toss away.
I had a light bulb moment: Let’s make clothes for our toy animals! Out the pair of old pants!
The kids love the idea.
We started with design for our models:  the grey cat, the white cat and the Big Boy (our bear)

 

Children design toys clothes

The grey cat was the first to get measured  – step 1.
We measured  how big its hug is. This is the distance from an end of one paw to another, when the spreads his cat’s arms wide open to give us a hug.
We measured how big its heart is. This is the circumference measured just below the armpits.
We measured how well he eats. This is the circumference of the widest part around the waist.
We measured how long his legs are. This is the distance from his waist ( it is very hard to find one in toys 🙂 ) to the bottom of his paws.
Next step – step 2 – is to make a sewing pattern. We drew the tops and the bottom of the cat’s outfit using the provided above measurements and added about 1 cm (which is approximately ½ inch ) for seam allowances.
Step 3. Then the kids cut the sewing pattern out.

make-cut sewing patterns

Step 4. We fixed the sewing patterns onto the fabric with safety pins. There should be two layers of fabric underneath.
IMPORTANT: Use safety pins instead of regular ones to make sure kids do not hurt themselves!
Step 5. Cut the fabric following the pattern. And this is normally the time, when I ask myself : Are you sure you did not mess up some measurements or the pattern placement? This time I put the worries aside, as we have more pants to destroy if needed, and I let my older child to take the scissors and cut the fabric!
Step 6. Remove the safety pins, separate the parts.

Fix sewing pattern onto fabric cut

Step 7. Place fabric details with face side to each other and fix with safety pins.

place_fabric_face_side_each_other

Step 8. Sew the parts together with a needle (or use a sewing machine, which I do not have)  – the seams of sleeves and bottom. This step I did all by myself, as my kids are still small; however, I think it is great to allow your older children to help you.

 

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Step 9. And finally the excitement of trying out the outfit ! Guess what? Our grey cat loved it! It said : “ Meow!” which means “Thank you!”

Trying out outfit

Step 10. Repeat the steps to have more fun and make your kids and their toys are happy 🙂
With love from mama Galia!

Creative Tuesday: Simple Sun Craft

Welcome to Creative Tuesdays!
Here’s another very simple craft: Make a sun!
sun
We made this craft when we were learning letter S and the word the Sun. It is so simple and the children had fun making it.
What you will need:
A piece of paper
A plate or a circle template
Colorful contact paper strips
Colors (crayons, markers, pencils)
The steps are simple:
Together with your child trace the plate/circle on the paper.
Now color it the circle and draw a face on it.
Stick the strips of contact paper around for the rays.
Your sun is ready!
You can also use this to review color yellow, orange, black and draw a rainbow and clouds around for more fun!

Special Guest Thursday: A Garden Keepsake Handprint {Expat Life With A Double Buggy}

As the time is fast approaching for the new baby to arrive, I will have few special guests  – fellow bloggers – visiting my blog on Thursday to share some craft, ideas, thoughts and experiences.

Today I am happy to introduce Amanda from Expat Life With A Double Buggy with a fun and meaningful craft activity – A Garden Keepsake Handprint.

 Amanda is British but have called the Netherlands home since 2000. She lives in a void between being British and being Dutch. She is ‘mama’ to three boys aged seven and under. All three were born in the Netherlands and have dual nationality but the reality is they are more Cloggie than Brit….. and that makes life interesting. Motherhood abroad throws up challenges, questions and amazing memories. Her “Expat Life with a Double Buggy” blog is her tale of living, loving and mothering abroad in the Netherlands, about the ups and downs of life in a foreign country. You can follow Amanda on Twitter, Facebook, G+ and Pinterest.
A Garden Handprint Keepsake in 5 Easy Steps
Last summer I wanted to make some kind of keepsake for our garden, aware of how fast our three little boys are growing. We decided on a handprint tile.
Step 1: My handy husband took loose planks of wood from the shed and constructed and fixed a rectangle with them. He then placed the frame on a piece of MDF and then on a plastic sheet.
Step 2: We mixed the concrete and poured it into the wooden frame, and my husband spent some time making the concrete smooth. We left it a few minutes until the concrete became a little sturdier.
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Step 3: We wrote the date in the concrete at the bottom of the rectangle with a thick pencil.
Step 4: We started with the biggest handprints and worked down the family, working out roughly how the prints would all fit in the concrete rectangle before the first hand went in. One by one each member of the family pressed their hand firmly into the concrete.
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We kept a bucket of water and a tea towel handy to wash and dry hands, as each child was finished.  We wrote our initial under each handprint.
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Step 5: We left the concrete to dry. Once the structure was set we removed the frame (2 days later) and set the tile upright in the garden.
A year later, it is still standing proud as a reminder of how much little hands become that little bit bigger as each month passes. As years go by we’ll realise just how small my boys’ hands once were.
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Thank you for sharing this activity, Amanda! It looks absolutely great and what a wonderful memory to preserve!

Creative Tuesday: Cupcake Liner Flower

flowers
Welcome to Creative Tuesday! On Tuesdays I will be trying my best to post some simple craft activities for you to make with your children/students.
As you probably noticed – I love flowers. And I love making craft with flowers. I have previously posted a craft that involved cupcake liners to make flowers. Today I offer you an activity that is based on the method: cupcake liner flowers.
What you need:
White sheet of paper
4 cupcake liners
Markers or crayons
Glue
How to make it:
Take one cupcake liner and flatten it. Apply glue on the circle of the inner part (less colorful) and stick the outer side up.
Now take the second liner and invert it – outer part inside. Pinch 4 sides to make is resembling flower petals. Apply glue on the opposite side and stick in the middle of the first flower.
Repeat with the other 2 liners.
Now, draw stems and leaves using markers or crayons. And all other stuff that you can imagine: sun, grass, birds, bugs, butterflies, clouds…
flowers1
Talk about the pictures with your child/student. I asked my students to describe their picture in simple words:
“Hello, my name is… This is my picture. In my picture there are …. flowers. There is green grass. There are …. birds. There is the sun. There are …. butterflies. Do you like my picture?”
Craft is a great way for speech development – it allows you to communicate with the child, learn colors, shapes, various verbs, adjectives, adverbs, pronouns and of course, phrases.
I hope you enjoy making this simple craft with your children!

Creative Tuesday: Collages for Love

CYMERA_20140214_121416
Last week the world celebrated Valentine’s Day which coincided with the 14th Day post Spring Festival – the Lantern Festival.
Growing up in Soviet Russia, we never celebrated Valentine’s Day and I had not much of an idea what it was till I read about it at the University during one of the European History classes.
When I first came to China and became an expat, it was fun doing something for Valentine’s with my friends but the idea never really appealed to me and that was just it – a fun day to eat chocolate and go out with friends.
Now in our family we don’t celebrate Valentine’s. However, I take it as an opportunity to talk about the Virtue of Love.
As I mentioned in my previous post, I’ve been homebound with the children due to cold weather and a cold/sinus infection. Since I felt better by Friday, I spent whole morning with my 5 year old and 19 months old making collages for love and appreciation.

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The idea is simple: cut out few big hearts and a bunch of smaller hearts. We also used colorful contact paper to make hearts. Then place the bigger heart in the middle of the big sheet of white paper and stick smaller hearts around in a desired order. Write your love messages  and put them on display!

 

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Suggested materials: white sheets of paper, construction paper, colorful contact paper, regular color paper, scissors, glue, pencils, crayons, markers.
What did you do for Valentine’s Day? Do you celebrate it in your family? How do you show your appreciation and love to your family members?