Posts tagged ‘Crafts’

October 25, 2014

Upcoming Little Sprouts: My Desert Adventure

by Melissa Harding

DSC_0076

This November, join us for the next installment of Little Sprouts, My Desert Adventure.  Phipps Little Sprouts camps for 2-3 year-olds and their adult caregiver are interactive programs for child and adult to experience together.  Each session will take place in the Tropical Forest and include songs, stories, sensory experiences, and healthy snacks. In My Desert Adventure, campers will meet animals and plants friends that live in the hot, dry desert and learn why they make the desert their home.

Please join us on November 21, 9:30-10:30 or 11:00 a.m. to noon for My Desert Adventure.

If you would like to sign up your child for this or any other Little Sprouts program, please contact Sarah at (412)441-4442 ext. 3925.

For a complete list of all our Little Sprout offerings, please visit our website.

We hope to see you there!

The above photo was taken by Science Education and Research staff.

November 12, 2012

Upcoming Little Sprouts: My Favorite Fruits

by Melissa Harding

This Thursday, join us for the next installment of our popular series, Little Sprouts: Single Servings. Our next serving is called My Favorite Fruits.  Little Sprouts: Single Servings is a one-day version of our popular Little Sprouts series for 2- and 3- year-olds (with an adult). In My Favorite Fruits, campers will learn how a flower is pollinated to make fruit and why this is important for plants. Join us for a morning of songs, crafts and snacks that come from fruit! We will also take a fruit tour of the Conservatory, looking for special fruits enjoyed by both people and animals.

Please join us on November 16, 10:30 a.m. to noon for My Favorite Fruits.

If you would like to sign up your child for this or any other Little Sprouts program, please contact Sarah at (412)441-4442 ext. 3925.

For a complete list of all our Little Sprout offerings, please visit our website.

We hope to see you there!

The above photo was taken by Christie Lawry.

September 4, 2012

Home Connections: Making Seed Balls

by Melissa Harding

The Home Connections series features ways that you can teach simple environmental education concepts to your child at home.

In this week’s Home Connections, our topic is seeds. We talk about seeds quite a bit at Phipps; the topic comes up in every summer camp and we even have popular school and outreach programs about seeds. In short, we do lots of seed activities! If there is a way to turn old seeds into a craft or game, we have tried it. As a way to continue the conversation at home about seeds and germination with your child, try making seed balls!

What is a seed ball? A seed ball is a little ball made of compost, clay and seeds that can be planted anywhere, even in areas with poor soil. Popular with urban gardeners, these little balls can be thrown over fences, planted on the sidewalk and put in the least hospitable places, yet still grow. In a decorative bag, they also make beautiful gifts and favors for special occasions.

Seed balls grow so well because each ball contains all the elements needed for the seeds inside to germinate. The soil and compost in the ball provides nutrients and the clay provides a protective coating for the seeds inside; all you need to add is rain. You can use any type of seed in your seed balls, from small carrot seeds to large marigold seeds, and shape your seed balls accordingly. This is a versatile craft that all ages will enjoy.

Making seed ball is more of an art than an exact recipe.

They can be made out of the following ingredients:
3 parts clay (you can use powdered potter’s clay or pre-mixed children’s art clay from the craft store)
1 part compost or potting soil
1 part seeds
Water to mix

To make: Add water to clay and mix until it becomes a little soft and pliable. (This first part takes a strong arm). Next, add compost and mix until mixture is a definite brown color and the compost and clay are integrated.  Finally, take a small handful of the mixture and sprinkle some seeds onto it. Mix the seeds into the clay  and form into a ball shape. Make sure the seeds are inside of the clay. Let them dry overnight or several days until the seed balls turn a lighter color.

To use: Toss anywhere that you would like your seeds to grow! It is best to toss before a rain spell or gently water with a hose to help soften the clay. Over time, the clay will break down and the seed will germinate!

Note: Please do not toss in natural areas where the seeds you plant may compete with native plants.

Topics to address with your child while making seed balls:
Pollination
Germination
Inside a seed
What seeds need to germinate versus what plants need to grow
How seeds travel

The above photos were taken by Melissa Harding and Christie Lawry.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 199 other followers

%d bloggers like this: