Category Archives: Arts-Crafts-Coloring Pages

Thin Stix Creativity Pack Review & Giveaway

All six of my kids love using tempera paint “stix” by The Pencil Grip, Inc.  We were recently sent 24 beautiful colors in their Thin Stix Creativity Pack to review in our home.  The Pencil Grip, Inc is also offering one of their sets of Thin Stix as a Giveaway free to one of our readers.

Thin Stix Creativity Pack

There are many reasons you will want a set of Thin Stix Creativity Packs to use in your home or office.

  • 24 Colors
    • 12 Classic Colors
    • 6 Neon Colors
    • 6 Metallix Colors
  • Solid Tempera Paint Sticks
  • Easy To Use
  • Uncap, Twist & Paint
  • Non-toxic
  • No Mess
  • No Fuss
  • No Water Needed
  • Dries in 90 Seconds
  • Won’t Crack or Split
  • Paint like finish
  • Great for painting on poster paper, cardboard, wood, and canvas
  • Other surfaces too (we tried them out on lots of surfaces!)

These paints are great!  They are MESS FREE and recommended for everyone 3 and older, and yes, adults have fun using them too!  They are available at many big box and online stores.  Thin Stix Creativity Pack retails for $24.99 and are currently on sale for $19.99 at BJ’s.

They offer a regular style called Kwik Stix and a thin style of Kwik Stix called Thin Stix.  They also offer lots of colors. Check their website for information on the different sizes and various color sets they have available. Here is a video from The Pencil Grip, Inc demonstrating how to use their tempera paint stix.

How We Used Thin Stix:

I was thrilled to be given another wonderful opportunity to review Thin Stix with my kids!  We love using Thin Stix in our home ever since we reviewed Thin Stix 6 Pack of Classic Colors earlier this year.

This kit is so much more!  It has the bold 6 classic colors plus + more classic colors for a total of 12.  Then it has 6 Neon colors plus 6 Metallix colors too, for a total of 24 vibrant colors of tempera paint sticks.  The Metallix colors are really speacial because they have a sparkle effect that reflects the light.

Thin Stix are easy to use and hold on to that even my youngest kids can do art projects easily.  It is as simple as taking off the cap and using them.  If you need a little more paint, then you simply twist the bottom of the stick like a tube of chapstick.  The paint comes up at the other end and you are ready to simply draw with them again.  They are mess free and ready to paint with.  There is no need for water and no clean up.  I am always looking for projects my kids can do that are simple, and I especially like MESS FREE arts and crafts!  Check out this short video that shows how mess free they really are:

Projects With Thin Stix Creativity Pack:

Here are a few of projects we have made with our Thin Stix Creativity Pack over the past few weeks.  I am sure we will have many more great projects using these paints in our arts and crafts and school work this year.  I have shared a few pictures below and I will link the stories about how we made these projects and what materials we used as I get them posted.

  • Art Class Fall Season Painting (Multimedia Art Books)
  • Art Class Wooden Creations (Popsicle Stick)
  • Organizer Container Art (Recycled Milk Jugs)
  • Organizer Container Art  (Recycled Shampoo Bottles)
  • Lunch Box Art  (Recycled Milk Jugs)
  • Candle Flower Art   (Recycled Milk Jugs)
  • Butterfly Art & Science (Recycled Milk Jugs)
  • Bird House Art & Science (Recycled Milk Jugs)
  • Bird Feeder Art (Recycled Milk Jugs)
  • Birthday Cards (Construction Paper)
  • Get Well Cards (Construction Paper)

Art Class Fall Season Painting

(Thin Stix & Multimedia Art Books)

We took a walk and looked at trees and gathered a few fall leaves for inspiration and to inspect the colors of fall more closely.

The kids found similar colors in the Thin Stix and used their own creativity to paint a fall scene.

Organizer Container Art

(Thin Stix & Recycled Milk Jugs)

These are so cute!  You can use them for just about anything you need to organize.  Kids could use them for their Thin Stix and art supplies, Legos, crayons, etc.  You could use them in your drawers to hold socks or miscellaneous items.  You could use them to hold fruit (or candy) on the counter. It could hold napkins on the table as a cute centerpiece too. 

My son loved personalizing his organizer!

Organizer Container Art

(Thin Stix & Recycled Shampoo Bottles)

These containers are so cute and just the right size.  They are so simple to make.  They are small enough to fit into a backpack or purse. They can hold a variety of things from art supplies, small journal, cell phone, camera, first aide, small sowing kit, to snacks, etc.  They will make great gifts to give away too.

 

Lunch Box Art

(Thin Stix & Recycled Milk Jugs)

I can’t wait to share the finished product of this project.  Stay tuned for another story.  This was so easy to make and personalize using our Thin Stix.  It can fit easily into a backpack or purse and hold a huge variety of of foods from sandwiches, juice boxes, granola bars, crackers, fruit, bags of veggies, fruit cups, yogurt, etc. 

The lunch boxes are not water tight, but they will prevent your foods from getting smashed in your bag or backpack.  It has a lid and is large enough to keep several loose items altogether, so it is easy to pull it out and have everything inside the lunch box without searching for something that got misplaced.  These containers are special because you made them yourself.  You can also use this to organize various non-food items too.

Butterfly Art & Science

(Thin Stix & Recycled Milk Jugs)

The kids had a lot of fun learning about butterflies and making their own creations.

Candle Flower Art

(Thin Stix & Recycled Milk Jugs) The kids had a lot of fun cutting out their petals, painting them with Thin Stix colors like Metalix Purple and Classic Purple, and hot glueing the petals together to create lovely flowers. 

Then they attached a small tea candle in the center of the flower. 

These lovely candle holders will look very pretty on our table, and we made some to give away too. 

If you want a safer version without a flame, then instead of using real candles, use battery operated candles.  They will look just as beautiful.

Birthday Cards Fall Theme 

(Thin Stix & Paper & Construction Paper)

Get Well Cards

(Thin Stix & Paper & Construction Paper)

Projects With Thin Stix 6 Pk Classic Colors:

Here are a few projects we made using the Thin Stix 6 Pack of Classic Colors of tempera paints.  Some of these have additional stories about making those projects and to read them, just click on the link.

Art Class Paint Project

(Thin Stix & Multimedia Art Book)

DIY Portable Art Kits

(Thin Stix Tempera Paints Various Colors, Colored Pencils, Charcoal Pencils, Pencil Sharpener, Gel Pens, Water Colors, Multimedia Art Book, Sketch Pad, Recycled Zippered Container)

Father’s Day Cards

(Thin Stix, File Folder, Bible Verse)

Garden Pots

(Thin Stix & Flower Pots)

I am also amazed how durable these paints are.  I painted these pots with Thin Stix 6 Pack of Classic Colors several months ago.  Even after the rains and later the scorching heat on the back deck all summer, the bugs and flowers we painted my pots have endured and still look great!

Final Thoughts:

I really like the fact these tempera paints (Kwik Stix and Thin Stix) are mess free. I also like the fact they have so many applications, they are portable so you can take them with you, and you can use them to personalize your space, beyond just using them on a piece of paper.

GIVEAWAY

Want to win a set of Thin Stix from The Pencil Grip, Inc? Then enter this giveway for a chance to win.  Giveaway entries will be accepted between 11/9/17 and 11/22/17 for your chance to win.  If you would kindly share this giveaway with your family, friends, and on your social media: facebook, twitter, pinterest, etc I would greatly appreciate your help in getting the word out.  Be blessed and I hope you win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Social Media Links for Pencil Grip:

Follow The Pencil Grip on their social Media links for all the latest news, special sales, and product updates.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thepencilgrip/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/thepencilgrip   @thepencilgrip

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/thepencilgrip/

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLmKo4Es5M5VwzXuFKk7j6w

Blog: http://handwritingathome.blogspot.com/

Homeschool Review Crew

Be sure to check out what other families on the Homeschool Review Crew to say about using Thin Stix Creativity Pack with their kids.

Please share.

DIY Candle Holder From Recycled Milk Jug

This project is really simple and affordable.  You can recycle or upcycle a used milk jug into a fun craft to decorate your home and also have a special gift to give away.

You will need:

  • Empty clean milk jug
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pencil or pen
  • candel
  • hot glue or super glue
  • Paint of your choice. (we used Thin Stix tempera paints. See info below to enter our Giveaway!)

Cut out random size flower petal shapes from milk jug.

We cut about 7 small, 10 medium, and 8 large.  Cut as many as you desire.

Paint the petals in the color (s) of your choice.  Let the petals dry.  If you desire a white flower, then leave the petals unpainted.  The painted petals will give off a lovely reflection of light.   The unpainted flower will glow with a beautiful soft light allowing you to almost see through the layers of the flower.  It is up to you if you desire to paint them or leave them unpainted.

Glue the base of the petals together.

We found it easiest to start with the larger petals and then glue on the medium and we glued the small petals on last.  Then place a dot of glue to attach the base of the candle to the flower.

If you want to use a candle version without a flame, then instead of using real candles, use battery operated candles.  They look just like the real thing but are safer because there is an LED light instead of an open flame.  You can find these at most big box retail stores and online.  You can even find inexpensive ones at the Dollar Store for $1.   The Dollar Store also carries the tea candles in packs of 8 for $1.  These flower candles are not expensive to make, especially if you can make 8 of them with real candles for only $1.

Whether you choose to use a regular candle or a battery operated candle, either way they will look beautiful and be something homemade with a personal touch.  They also help the environment by recycling or repurposing milk jugs that otherwise would have been thrown into the land fill.  These lovely flower candles will become a special gift to give to loved ones and friends.

 

GIVEAWAY

Be sure to ENTER the GIVEAWAY for a set of THIN STIX !

Thin Stix Giveway

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Learning To Draw By The Sea

The ocean is an amazing thing.   Did you know water covers over 70% of the earth’s surface?  Scientists claim they have only explored 5% of the ocean so far.  That leaves a whole lot of mystery about this beautiful habitat that is so vital to the world in so many ways.  I would encourage everyone to visit the ocean at least once if they get the opportunity. Your senses will be overwhelmed and rejuvenated by the experience.

It is amazing to listening to the roar of the waves, get your feet wet or go for a swim, wait and watch for fish or dolphins to breach the surface, to observe birds swooping down to catch a fish, or sighting an occasional fishing boat out to sea.  The ocean is always changing and you could spend hours watching it.

Our family loves to visit the ocean!  We are usually blessed to take a day drive and visit the sea a couple of times a year.  Sometimes we drive several hours just to get out and walk the beach and splash in the waves for two hours and then get back in the vehicle and drive several more hours back home. Depending on which beach we visit, it takes us about 4 hours to get to the closest one.  It is a long ways to drive, but it is free to use the public beaches. If we pack a cooler with food and water, then the only cost involved is the fuel to drive there.  With a large family, getting to do something fun for FREE is a big deal.

On a few occasions, we have been blessed with the opportunity to spend the night instead of driving there and back all in one day.  Those overnight experiences by the sea have been exceptional.  It is hard to describe the amazing way you feel when you wake up to the ocean, and get up with the sun rise, spend the day in the salty air, then get to observe the sunset, and listen to the waves in the dark of night as the stars twinkle overhead.  It is wonderful!

Learning To Draw By The Sea.

We recently had the opportunity to stay overnight on a visit to the ocean. We spent the morning and evening playing on the beach, but in the heat of the day, we needed something else to do to avoid getting a serious sunburn.   We did not bring electronic games or computers that are part of our normal homeschooling day.  Instead, we played board games like chess, put together fun puzzles, and spent part of our time learning to draw with the art kits we recently made.

It was so nice to have our portable DIY Art Kits.  Be sure to check the story with information on how to make one for your family.

The kits were small enough to go just about anywhere with us, yet they were big enough to hold just about everything we needed.

For some reason that I can’t remember, I didn’t get pictures of the kids drawing.  I guess I must have been so excited about the view, and the opportunity to sit there and draw, that I failed to get up and take pictures of what the others were making too.

For this project, I used the watercolor pencils.  I had hoped to make a project with paints too, but I didn’t have time to accomplish both on this trip.  My older son chose to use charcoal pencils from his kit, and the younger kids used crayons.  I pulled out a small table onto the porch to hold my drawing pad and pencils.

It was a bit windy on this day.  I separated the pencils colors that I wanted to use from the case holding the pencils.  I set them beside my drawing pad, however the wind kept blowing them off and I was constantly having to get up and down to catch a pencil before it rolled off the porch.  I realized the next time I take this art kit on a trip, I will need to bring something better to hold the colors I am using.  Perhaps something as simple as a rubber band or a small tray with sides would have solved my problem.

From the porch where I sat, I could see a long ways in the distance across the ocean and the beach up and down the coast.  To the front of me was ocean as far as I could see, and to the left was a small fishing vessel that soon disappeared while I was drawing.  I tried to capture both in my drawing.  The waves were the most difficult part to draw because they kept moving. Drawing the ocean wasn’t easy because even though it appears the same, in reality each and every moment it keeps changing.

Learning to draw by the sea was fun and it is an experience our family will never forget.

“And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.”  Genesis 1:10

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DIY Art Kits

Here is a fun and affordable DIY Art Kit for travel, hiking, art classes, or to use around the house.

We have two birthdays coming up and both birthday kids have requested a set of Thin Stix paints for their birthdays.  We recently reviewed these fun tempera art sticks and the kids had a lot of fun.   Be sure to read about our experience reviewing Thin Stix.

So in addition to adding these to our art supplies at home for art classes and crafts we make, I have also ordered additional sets for both birthday kids.  I ordered the Neon Colors pack for my daughter and the Creative Colors pack for my son.  I am hoping they arrive in time to add into their art kits I made for their birthdays.

These Thin Stix tempera paints are “take anywhere” and “mess free” so they are perfect to take on the go in the car, or to a game, to sit outside and paint a scene from nature, or if they want they can even color in bed.

DIY Art Kits are portable, can be easily carried, and are light weight so the kids, or mom (I want to make a kit for me too) can sit anywhere and have the basic art supplies they need to create something beautiful.

Watch this short video about using Thin Stix tempera paint sticks from The Pencil Grip, Inc. to see why these are such a great addtion to your art kits.

DIY Art Kits:

For these kits, I used a re-purposed container. I saved a see through zippered plastic pouch from a bed sheet set. This container is the perfect holder for their kits, they can see everything in it at a glance, and they will fit nicely in a shoulder bag or backpack.

DIY Art Kits we made include: Thin Stix tempera paints, Mixed Media Sketch Paint Pad, Charcoal Pencils, Graphite Pencils, Colored Pencils, Pencil Sharpener, Eraser, Ruler, Gel Pens, and a small Watercolor Kit, various Paint Brushes (not pictured) and a sponge.

You can add crayons and oil pastels, a protractor, origami papers, colored tape, glue, various colored tissue papers, and and exacto knife if desired to this kit still and a fold-able easel if desired.

These costs will vary in making these kits.  Two of the kits I made cost about Art Kits $30 +/- and a larger kit I made for my older son that included more Thin Stix colors cost about $40 to include everything.

Some of the individual costs of items to put this together for example included:  Sketch Pad $8, Colored Pencils $8, Thin Stix 6pk of Neon Colors $7 and the other kit included Thin Stix 24pk of Creative Colors.  Some of the other items came from the Dollar Store and the outer case was repurposed for free.

The outer case is a zippered plastic cover that came on a couple of sheet sets we purchased a while back and I saved the covers thinking I might use them some day.  Sure enough, they are great for holding these art supplies.   Some items will cost a little more if you purchase them online from e-bay or a lot more if purchased from an art supply store.  It is up to you what you include, and the ages and needs of your kids, so costs will vary.

The paint brushes for the DIY Art Kit are back-ordered, and I am hopeful they will arrive in time for their birthdays. I wanted to keep these kits mess free and easy to use. Thin Stix are wonderful for keeping them mess free, but sometimes you want to use watercolors too. These brushes will help watercolor paints to be less messy because they hold water in the handle of the paint brush. For the watercolor brushes all you do is squeeze the brush then dab the brush onto the dry watercolor and use it.   Then to clean it just squeeze the brush again so water reaches the brush and wipe off on the sponge before you get your next color.

I think my kids will really enjoy using these homemade portable DIY Art Kits. I am thankful for the opportunity to try out the Thin Stix 6k Classic Colors tempera paints and we are excited to include them in our portable travel kits and our art supplies in our home.Stay tuned for pictures of other projects we make with our Thin Stix! They are a lot of fun, mess free, and so easy to use!

I found a cute method for downsizing all of this into one small bag that is taped (using cute paterned duck tape) to the art pad so you can hold all of this on your lap without loosing anything.  I don’t have my kit finished yet. But check out this video by Coloring Pages Bliss so you can see how to attach your zippered pouch of supplies right to your art pad and an extremely light weight easy access portable art kit.

I made two of these kits for birthdays we are celebrating next month.  I liked them so much that I made one for myself too.  And now the other four kids have requested them too.  So that is a future project.

Please share.

Thin Stix 6pk Of Classic Colors Review

We are reviewing the cutest set of easy to hold, mess free, affordable tempera paint sticks.  With six kids in our house, I am always cleaning looking for ways my kids can do MESS FREE arts and crafts.

I was thrilled to be given the opportunity to review Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors tempera paint sticks from The Pencil Grip, Inc.

Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors

There are many reasons you will want a set (or if you are like me you will want multiple sets) of these Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors in your home or office.

  • 6 Classic Colors
  • Easy To Use
  • Uncap, Twist & Paint
  • No Mess
  • No Fuss
  • No Water Needed
  • Solid Tempera Paint Sticks
  • Dries in 90 Seconds
  • Won’t Crack or Split
  • Paint like finish
  • Great on poster paper, cardboard, wood and canvas

Here is a video from The Pencil Grip, Inc demonstrating their tempera paints.  They have a regular sticks (Kwik Stix) and a thin sticks (Thin Stix) sizes and lots of additional colors are available too. Check their website for more information.

How we used Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors:

Art Classes:

We have a subscription to online art lessons through Creating A Masterpiece that teaches the kids to use various paints, pencils, pens, charcoal, etc in making masterpieces.  We have used various art supplies for their Art Classes, however these Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors gave us a whole new art experience.

They were easy to hold and dried quickly and we had no mess to clean up. They are great for painting large areas with a single color.

The only down side is that we didn’t know how to blend the colors or to get really fine detail with them. If there was a way to narrow the tip of the Thin Stix even more, then we could have sharpened up the details of our pictures.

But over all we like them and I am adding more sets of these wonderful Thin Stix tempera paints to their homeschool art supplies for their art lesson projects.

Father’s Day Bookmark:

Father’s Day is coming up soon and we decided we needed a cute project we could make for dad. We checked out the Better Handwriting At Home blog by The Pencil Grip, Inc for some craft ideas. One of the projects their blog featured was using a hammer coloring page  made into a Father’s Day card. My husband is a master carpenter and the kids agreed that a hammer is just the right gift for him! But instead of making a hammer into a card that is only used once, my son wanted to make a handy hammer bookmark for Dad’s bible that he could use everyday.

We searched on line for a free hammer coloring page and printed out copies for the kids to use.  We got our supplies together that included: Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors , a glue stick, file folders to make a strong back (a cereal box will also work), a pencil, and a pair of scissors. You can also use a laminator when you are done to help them last even longer.

Next step was to paint their pictures. It was so easy to use. It felt almost like panting with lipstick or a tube of chap-stick. But not greasy. Instead it was smooth and dry.

There is no smearing or smudging. The paint dries very quickly. We were not able to blend colors, but that was fine for this application. As the kids got used to using them, they learned how to press lighter or harder to create a different textured look.

The paint dried smooth before it was completely dry. That is nice. We tried to rub a little off with a paper towel where he had pressed to hard and got it too dark, but it is difficult to remove once the paint is on the paper. So my advice is to press lightly and add more later if you need too.

By the time he was finished painting his hammer, it was completely dry. There was no waiting necessary for him to move on to gluing the hammer onto the file folder. We have never had painted crafts progress so quickly! Next, he cut out the shape of the hammer through both layers of paper and folder.

The file folder backing gave the bookmark enough strength to stay straight when being handled. It won’t bend out of shape during repeated use.

On the back side of the bookmark, he decided not to paint it, but instead drew out the design of the hammer and wrote a scripture message to Dad. He got out his cursive workbook for reference to make sure he wrote his letters very neat.

He did a great job and I am certain Dad will enjoy it and get a lot of use with it.

Father’s Day Card:

My daughter wanted to make something a little more feminine and came up with a card that features a pair of praying hands and the bible verse “Our Father” that Jesus taught us to pray.  She used the Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors to create “painted fingernails” on the praying hands so they resembled her own hands. For this project we found a free coloring page online with a scripture.

She chose this specific scripture because it talks about our Heavenly Father and how HE leads us and takes care of us EVERYDAY.

“Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.” Matthew 6: 9-13

She chose to paint the finger nails, because she loves it when her Daddy paints her nails. She painted the nails green because her favorite color was not an option in this Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors set.

She said the green paint was the next best option.  She has asked me to order the additional colors of Thin Stix for her birthday so she can have “Pink” and “Purple” and “Light Blue” which are her favorite colors. Thankfully Thin Stix 6pk of Neon Colors will work perfect for her.

To make her Father’s Day card, she glued along one edge of two pieces of construction paper and pressed the edges together to create binding for her card. After painting the finger nails on her coloring page, she used scissors to cut out the hands and the scripture and glued them onto the front piece of her card. She put another message inside her card. I think her Daddy will really like her card and the special touch of the painted fingernails.

Garden Pots:

We plan to paint some cute bugs on flower pots next. We also saw this project on the Better Handwriting at Home blog. Our spring garden is really coming along nicely. Be sure to check out the stories on our garden and updates. We recently bought a stacking 3 pot planter system on our last grocery trip. I plan to plant it with herbs later this week. If the weather cooperates and time permits, then I plan to use the Thin Stix to paint some bugs and designs on those pots and then plant them.  I will try to post an update garden story about it next week.

DIY Art Kits:

We also have two birthdays coming up and both birthday kids have requested a set of Thin Stix paints for their birthdays. So inaddition to adding these to our art supplies at home for art classes, I have ordered additional sets for both kids (the Neon pack for my daughter and the Classic pack for my son) and made DIY Art Kits for them.

These Thin Stix tempera paints are “take anywhere” and “mess free” so they are perfect to take on the go in the car, or to a game, to sit outside and paint a scene from nature, or if they want they can even color in bed.

DIY Art Kits are portable, can be easily carried, and are light weight so the kids, or mom (I want to make a kit for me too) can sit anywhere and have the basic art supplies they need to create something beautiful.

For these kits, I used a re-purposed container. I saved a see through zippered plastic pouch from a bed sheet set. This container is the perfect holder for their kits, they can see everything in it at a glance, and they will fit nicely in a shoulder bag or backpack.

DIY Art Kits include:

Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors tempera paints, Mixed Media Sketch Paint Pad, Charcoal Pencils, Graphite Pencils, Colored Pencils, Pencil Sharpener, Eraser, Ruler, Gel Pens, and a small Watercolor Kit, various Paint Brushes (not pictured) and a sponge.

The paint brushes for the DIY Art Kit are back-ordered so I didn’t get a picture of them yet.   I am hopeful they will arrive in time for their birthdays. I wanted to keep these kits mess free and easy to use. Thin Stix are wonderful for keeping them mess free, but sometimes you want to use watercolors too. These brushes will help watercolor paints to be less messy because they hold water in the handle of the paint brush. For the watercolor brushes all you do is squeeze the brush then dab the brush onto the dry watercolor and use it.  Then to clean it just squeeze the brush again so water reaches the brush and wipe off on the sponge before you get your next color.

I think my kids will really enjoy using these homemade portable DIY Art Kits. I am thankful for the opportunity to try out the Thin Stix 6k Classic Colors tempera paints and we are excited to include them in our portable travel kits and our art supplies in our home.Stay tuned for pictures of other projects we make with our Thin Stix! They are a lot of fun, mess free, and so easy to use!

The Pencil Grip, Inc.

The Pencil Grip, Inc is a world renown company and leading manufacturer of ergonomic writing aids and therapeutic toys and educational products.

The Pencil Grip, Inc specializes in unique products that have many applications. These products help correct hand position, dexterity, and reduce stress on the hands and knuckles. They help control the grip of the writing instrument and improve performance. Their products are fun to use and help motivate hesitant learners too.

The Pencil Grip, Inc company was created by educational therapist Dr. Lois Provda in 1992 and their products have many decades of successful use in pediatric occupational therapy and classroom settings. Fast forward to today, the company has grown into an irreplaceable resource for hundreds of unique and innovative products for the home, school, and office. Millions of parents, teachers, and therapists worldwide have used these products and believe in the value and methods.

Social Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thepencilgrip/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/thepencilgrip
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/KwikStixPaint/boards/
Blog: http://handwritingathome.blogspot.com/

Homeschool Review Crew

Be sure to check out what other families on the Homeschool Review Crew to say about using Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors with their kids.

Please share.

ARTistic Pursuits: The Elements of Art and Composition Review

Do you need a fun art study project for your middle school aged kids? Then you might want to check out   Middle School 6-8, Book 1: The Elements of Art and Composition by ARTistic Pursuits.

middle school

ARTistic Pursuits
Middle School 6-8 Book One
The Elements of Art and Composition
Ages 11 and older
Retails for $47.95

With this art curriculum, kids will complete 68 origional works of art as they learn to draw.  Contains 36 weeks of lessons.   There are 16 units and each unit has 4 lessons.  Each unit follows the same pattern:

  • Build a Visual Vocabulary
  • Art Appreciation and Art History
  • Techniques
  • Application

Building a visual vocabulary involves learning how something can be described and then translated into a picture.  It involves connecting real world experiences and observations with ideas through art.

Art Appreciation and Art History involves studying how the great art masters conveyed a topic in their art and then the student applies this knowledge to their own work of art.

Techniques involves learning how to combine knowledge and tools.

Application involves involves a creating a final work of art using everything they have learned.

Art supplies needed to complete the curriculum are listed on the Getting Started page as well as a complete content list of units and lessons covered.

supplies

At the end of the book there is an evaluation page.   You can judge your students work and assign a grade based on these levels:

  1. Creative Exersise
  2. Challenge
  3. Drawing Technique
  4. The Project

This is a full year of art curriculum if you use it for 1 hour twice a week.  You can go faster or slower depending on the skills of your child.

How we used this curriculum

We received the book in order to facilitate this review.  We purchased our own art materials.  The super nice thing about this curriculum is that kids can accomplish a whole lot with only a few items, some of which you might already have.  This art curriculum is a win win for a homeschool budget!

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With this art curriculum, kids get to create their own origional works of art. They learn to free hand sketch art projects mentioned in the book, and they they apply these techniques to sketching some thing they observe in their own environment.

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In each lesson, they learn art history as well as art technique as they work their way through the book.  The lessons are basic and easy to follow.  Most students at these age levels will be able to work through this curriculum independantly depending on their reading skill level.

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Sometimes my kids wanted to take the lesson a step further and here is one where my son wanted to go beyond just sketching the piece.  He wanted to ad color in his picture too.  I gave him freedom to create it however he wanted too.

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On a sunny afternoon, his brother took his book outside to learn to draw and practice his skills.  He enjoyed doing his school work sitting next to his pet cat and pet chicken.

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Say what?  You don’t see her amongst the many shoes the kids kicked off their feet on the porch?  Oh yeah, his pet chicken is in the chair stitting right beside him.  Enjoying your pets, while you do your homework outside listening to the birds  and nature in your bare feet is just one of the many perks of being homeschoolers!

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My kids love to draw.  Now they are learning specific techniques to make their drawing more realistic and becoming more aware of what they are observing in the world around them.  Learning the technical ins and outs of drawing is something they are really enjoying, thanks to this review of ARTistic Pursuits curriculum.

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ARTistic Pursuits Review

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Fall Tile Art At Homeschool Coop

Creating personalized seasonal art is a great activity to do as a homeschool project. We participated in this project for homeschool coop. My kids had a blast learning how to make Fall Tile Art and will treasure these creations for many years to come.

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To make the Fall Tile Art project, you will need to cut out pictures with a fall theme. This is fun for kids to do and gives the project a personal touch because they chose their own special pictures. We cut out our pictures from fall themed paper bags, but you could also use magazines, wrapping paper, or print them off the internet, etc. You will also need ceramic tiles, modpoge, small felt cushions that stick on one side and are soft on the other, and a sealant.

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Next have the kids place a rough draft of their pictures on their tile so they can see where they want to place them or if they want to change the arrangement. Once it is stuck in place, they won’t be able to change their mind, so now is the time to decide where they want to place their pictures.

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Next have the kids remove the pictures from the tile and place them in the same arrangement on the table. Then have the kids brush modpodge all over the tile. Next place the pictures back in place. Then they need to brush the tiles again a second time, with modpodge and gently brush over the top of the pictures. Set the tiles somewhere to dry. It took our tiles about an hour for the modpodge to dry. We let the kids play games in the gym and exercise while the tiles dried.

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When the tiles were dry, we added small cushions to the four corners of the back side. The cushions are made of felt and are very soft.  If you don’t have cushions, you could glue or stick on a piece of felt too.  Finally we applied a clear spray sealant over the tile. For safety (breathing, etc), the sealant was sprayed onto the tiles by an adult outside in an open area. The sealant will help these masterpieces resist moisture and last a long time.

The tiles are lovely to display, and could be given away as wonderful homemade gifts too.   They can be used to decorate your home for whatever season you chose as your theme.  You can display them flat, or hung up.  The cushions on the bottom should help protect your furniture from scratches, or you could display these in a picture easle, plate display holder, or hang them on the wall.  To hang them on the wall you will need to ad a picture mount of some kind.  If you wanted to keep your expenses down, you could hotglue on a soda can tab as a picture mount and it wouldn’t cost but a few pennies for the hot glue you use.

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Botanical Art At Homeschool Coop

We made the coolest Botanical Art project at Homeschool Coop.  This is such a great project to do with kids.  You can frame these, and hang them on your wall, or give these as gifts, or even use them to create other art projects with.  Or you could make really super-duper cool homemade wrapping paper too.

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We did this art project outside. You need to be outdoors or in a well ventilated area for this project as the spray paint has a strong odor and also can get blown around by wind. It is a good idea to take turns and not have too many kids spray painting at once and be sure they are spaced a little distance away from each other. Adult supervision and safety measures should be taken with a project like this.

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The kids picked out colored paper.  They also picked out various plants and flowers they wanted to use.

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They laid out newspapers on the ground and set their colored paper on the newspaper. Then they placed their plant of choice on the paper, and spray painted over it. After a minute or so, they carefully lifted off the plant from the paper and the result was a beautiful reverse silhouette of the plant.

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I love these beautiful masterpieces the kids made! I hope to get them framed for the wall in the near future.

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Free Education Art Crafts and Coloring Pages


Adding ART of various forms into our daily routine makes living enjoyable. 

Without joy, people are depressed, overwhelmed, and unsettled.  But add in a cup of joy to each day, and people change.  They express happiness, acceptance, and optomism.  The bible says the joy of the Lord is our strength.  We can find joy by spending time with the Lord each day.   A fun way to encourage the expression of joy in our character is through art.

Not all artists display joyful or happy character qualities, mainly because art becomes a route job or project to get done.  For them, art no longer represents something enjoyable and truly creative in their life.  They worship and serve art, rather than art serving them. 

I love the approach children take to art.  There is fun and freedom in their creations, art serves them joy, the way art should be. 

The greatest artist I have ever learned about is God.  He is a master artist.  You can see his creativity in every sunrise, every face of a child, every plant that grows, every wave that reaches the shore, every bird that sings, every star filled sky.  He is a sculpter, potter, painter, designer, carver, refiner, architect, engineer, inventor, a creator, and so much more. 

As I teach my children about the amazing ART that is part of this world, I remind them of the Artist who created the world.  Scientists call him “Intelligent Design”, but I call him Father.  There has never been, nor will there ever be, an artist as great as God who calls himself “I AM”.

Here are some wonderful FREE Educational resources to use in teaching your children about the various forms of art and creativity.

If you would like to link to this page and tell others about these resources, please share this link

http://weiseracademy.com/2011/08/22/free-education-art-crafts-and-coloring-pages.aspx



Arts & Crafts & Coloring Pages


School Express Drawing Worksheets


Easy Fun School


Dick Blick Art Lesson Plans


How To Draw Videos By Jan Brett


Making Popup Books, Paper Engineering, Crafts, and more


Art Made Easy by Samantha Bell Lesson Plans


Christian Answers Coloring Pages


Donna Young: Art


Artists Helping Children


Activity TV


Deep Space Sparkle


DLTK


KDDoodle: Hand Drawn Coloring Pages


Parents


Paper Toys


Danielles Place


The Crafty Classroom


Coloring Page Source


Art Encyclopedia


Bright Ring


Make Stuff


Smithsonian:  Everything Art


Homeschool Art Lessons


Art Safari


Origami Kids



Some Great Blogs I Enjoy Reading With Lots of Art Projects For Kids Among Many Other Helpful Things

No Time For Flash Cards

Red Ted Art

Pink And Green Momma




What free art, crafts, and coloring websites and resources have you found that have helped in your homeschooling journey?  Please leave a comment below, thank you.


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