One awesome thing that has occurred to me about being an ex homeschooler/current afterschooler, during this Halloween season, is all the crafting. So far this fall, thanks to my son's school, I have had not one, but two opportunities to make costumes for him to wear-- one for Superhero Day honoring neighborhood heroes, and one for an annual Halloween event. I shared the DIY Ben 10 Superhero costume I made with mostly duct tape already and will be sharing my DIY Thriller Werewolf or Pre-tween Wolf costume tutorial(ish) and pics tomorrow. Anyway, I thought all the fun making was over, then Zack brought home an assignment to decorate a pumpkin as a character from a book he has read and bring the pumpkin and book to school to display all week long. I become drunk with crafty power whenever I have a reason to create things that my son will explode with excitement over, and that my friends and internet peeps will be at least marginally impressed by.
Zack chose to decorate his pumpkin like one of the pandas from the cutest book we've run across in a while, Mr. Chas and Lisa Sue Meet The Pandas, by Fran Lebowitz. I decided I would not take over his project, much as I wanted to, but that I would be a proper parent and simply exist to be his gentle guide. Happy to say, I succeeded in that. His pumpkin was perfect panda imperfection. And I wanted to do one SO bad! Then I remembered the book a friend of mine wrote, Curilocks and the Three Pink Pandas, which features a panda family...that is pink...and the little panda's name IS PUMPKIN! This project was clearly meant to be. I planned to make it just to share on the blog, but then I asked Zack's teacher if I could send in my own creation to display alongside the kids' (and promote my friend's awesome book). I wasn't surprised when she was happy to let me play.
I like making things, but they never turn out perfect. I'm not Martha Stewart, nowhere close, but I am an artsy mom and I freehand most things because I'm too impatient for stencils, and measuring tapes and things of that nature. I like the handmade look and feel of handmade things, so I become one with the paint strokes and asymmetry.
Following are a bunch of pictures of my pumpkin creation coming together. Super easy and super cute!
I was at home by myself when I finished Pumpkin Panda Pumpkin. I totally had a Geppetto from Pinnochio moment. When I put his last ear in place and sat back to look at him I giggled and said, "Hi, Pumpkin! " lol
The pandas in Zack's book had simpler faces. He was very proud of his creation, as he should be. Did we nail it or did we nail it?
If you don't take anything else away from this blog post, just know that if you're using acrylic (or any) paint, and you need to make brown, mix a bit of blue with a larger bit of orange. And also, GLUE DOTS! You're welcome.
What do you think? I hope you're inspired to try this with your kids or students. It's a perfect, Halloween-themed book report project.