Last week, I did a program called Little Helpers. Previously, I wrote a blog post about some of the details involving our Early Literacy Summer Reading Club, also called Little Helpers. Since the whole theme this summer is helping, I thought what better way to tie things nicely together than to have our "little helpers" help create some Summer Reading Club decor for us?
Naturally, the text of the decor read:
This took a little more prep than it may look like. First, I printed out the letters in the words (approximately one letter per page) and then traced them in pencil onto thick poster board. I did this two times for each word so we could have four signs in total. Next, I had one of our pages go over my pencil lines with thick black paint. This basically created four, thick, massive coloring pages. After that, I asked one of our maintenance guys to drill two holes in the top of each board (for hanging later) and I was set to go!
I debated about what craft supplies to put out for the kids to use. I wanted a variety of things, but I didn't want anything to overpower the words Little Helpers too much. Finally, I settled on crayons, stamp pads for hand prints, colored pencils, and do-a-dot markers.
Then it was time for the little ones to come help decorate!
Once the signs were decorated, I decided to ask a page to go over the black letter outlines one more time since a few were kind of buried under the colors. It was only really necessary on a few of letters (most severely of all being the "I" in the lower "LITTLE" seen below) but it really made all the letters pop a lot. Here are the finished products:
And here they are, all hung up in their home for the summer:
What worked best: Everyone was really into the hand printing. And it was so easy too!
What worked least: One of my regular storytime kids said "the difference between this program and other programs is that we don't get to take any craft project home." It wasn't a complaint really, just a normal 3-year-old observation. But if I ever do a program like this again (which I would like to do!), I'd probably make matching coloring sheets so the kids can take something home also.
All-in-all, this was a super-fun craft that both the children and the adults really enjoyed!