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    « The Rhodia Journal Swap #2 | Main | Creativity Queue Challenge: Day No. 5 »
    Monday
    Apr022012

    Make An All About Me Board

    This is a lovely kids' art project, developing a poster-sized display of things they love, including images, colors & art work that makes them happy. It's a fun way for your child to make decisions about what she likes!

    My daughter did an "All About Me" inspiration board when she was four. It's still one of her favorite things! In fact she liked the process so much that she made another two years later. This is a photo of her working on her board in 2004. She's actually standing on a chair to get the full perspective of the board. Check out the old iMac and the striped wallpaper from our old house!

    You are the Facilitator

    In the true spirit of this project, each and EVERY item on the board is selected by the child. This is not an art display, a school project or something to show off. The goal is to represent and inspire your child by working with items and images that they love and make them happy. If you make the selections, this is your board for the child, but this is the child's board. Your job is to be a facilitator of all this fun. To get the materials out and help the child understand the goal, and assist with the trickier logistics like getting tape off the tape dispenser, cutting images, holding the board steady.

    Here's how to do it!

    Ingredients

    1. Large piece of heavy posterboard.
    2. Magazines with colorful photographs & imagery
    3. Two-sided tape
    4. Kid scissors
    5. Magic markers and paper
    6. Ephemera: Ribbon, beads, fabric swatches, paint chips
    7. A stack of paintings or sketches drawn by your child
    8. A stack of candid family photographs

    My daughters attended a Reggio Emilia inspired pre-school following The Project Approach. Documentation is extremely important, so when the children did any type of art or creative work, the teacher would document the words the child used to describe their work. They would tape the dated description to the front corner or back of the work. It was fascinating to see their descriptions!

     The Play-By-Play

    1. Ask your child to go through the magazines and cut out any image or words that she likes. If your child is still wobbly with scissors, you can certainly cut things for them. {Do not censor in any way, other than limiting which magazines can be used.} If they aren't sure what to pick, just ask them to pick something that makes them smile or happy. It can be the subject matter (i.e. a tiger) or the color (i.e. a rainbow from an ad). 
    2. Cut out more images than you think they will need! This helps later because he or she will have fewer items to choose from, when making the actual board.
    3. Ask your child to go through the stack of photographs and select a photo of themself and one other photo. It could be a friend, family member, their dog, a flower.
    4. Guide your child to a box of ribbon, beads, fabric swatches and paint chips and ask them to pull out 5-7 things that they like. They might like the color, the pattern, the texture, it doesn't matter what. If they aren't sure what to pick, just ask them to pick something that makes them happy.
    5. Together, go through a small stack of your child's artwork and ask your child to select 1 or 2 works of art to put on the board. It is OK to cut out just a piece of the artwork for the board if they wish. It's their artwork after all!
    6. Ask your child to handwrite her name on a piece of paper.

    After gathering all of the stuff you'll need, you are ready to make the board. Guide your child to place the larger items they have selected on the board where they would like to attach them. Leave lots of white space for everything else.

    1. One by one, the child will attach the larger items with double sided tape. Just show the child how to flip the item over and place a small piece of double sided tape on each side or each corner. Older kids can paint the back of each item with a light layer of Mod Podge or glue, but it's easier and quicker to use tape! The child should place each item on the board. Please be careful not to micro-manage the process. It's the child's work, and it's a collage so it's OK to overlap. If he or she is unsure about where to put something, move to the next paper and work on that. One fun way to look at it is to spread out the bigger pieces so that there are cute little spots for the smaller pieces to go in between.
    2. Attach the larger magazine images to the board, overlapping or not, as desired. My daughter didn't want the images to overlap. Please note that all of the images will not fit ~ that is by design ~ so your child will further select their favorites from the images that have been cut out.
    3. Add the photographs and their handwritten name to the board.
    4. Add ephemera as desired. If they aren't sure what to pick, you can suggest they pick the colors they like best. That way the board colors will reflect their favorites.
    5. Optional: Depending on the child's age, they might want to add an envelope with a dated list of questions and their answers inside. For example, their favorite color, friend, holiday, song, movie, book, place. You can write or type the questions and your child can handwrite the answers. You can help with spelling, but let them write. It's a secret spot on the board.

    You might also enjoy starting an art journal together. Start with Art Journaling for Kids & Teens.

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