Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Arrrrrgh Mateys! Thar Be Treasure WHERE?!

I always seem to have pirate-loving children.  We always end up on a pirate adventure for several weeks every few months.  We've done the map thing, the treasure hunt through out the neighborhood, the pirate talk and walking of the plank. We've made  a pirate ship out of a big box and we've even written a pirate song!

This time around, I had a desire for something new.  Here is what I came up with:

1)  Treasure Playdough

  • I made FOUR batches of homemade playdough and colored it dirt/mud color
  • Once it was cooled and ready for play I hid giant "crystals" (from Michael's Craft in the bead section) and necklaces in the huge mound of playdough
  • I plopped it in the middle of the table and walked away. I did not tell them there was treasure inside the huge mound of playdough. (Seriously, if you have never stuck your hands in FOUR batches of playdough, you really must! It's a MUCH different experience then the usual individual portion size!)

Notice how the playdough is sticking to the jewels?  Ya...that would be because
not once, not twice but FOUR times I forgot to put the oil in!!!!  I added it after the
fact, and all I have to say about that is I do not recommend it!!  There was oil
shooting out of that playdough all over the counter!!  Whoops!

Pirate Messages

My "Jenn" (best daycare bud a girl could have) thought I could squeeze this idea into a pirate adventure, and she was absolutely right! As most things go when Jenn and I exchange ideas, one idea led to another! The original idea was to write each child's name with a white crayon on a white piece of paper. Put cups of liquid watercolored water and paint brushes out (small ones supply the most suspense) and have the children paint their picture.  As they are painting, their name will "magically" appear.

I made this fit our pirate adventure by placing the papers in our treasure box which we check daily for new surprises and treasures. In the treasure box were the papers and paint brushes. The children put those clues together to figure out we should paint the papers.

Boy were they ever surprised to find the "pirate messages"!!

The next day, there was a stack of about 50 different sized pieces of paper (roughly 3"x4" or so), and again paint brushes.  We decided to put the papers in a station.  Wow, were they loving it as letters, numbers, various pictures and names of their friends appeared on the paper.  ***WE ALSO DISCOVERED THAT MARKERS WORK FOR THIS ACTIVITY TOO!!!***