55 • 30 JULY 2008
Editorial - Taro Gomi
2. Sticky robot shapes
3. The ultimate sticky picture
Easy paper mache
5. More sticky ideas
6. Featured subscriber blog
Editorial - Taro Gomi
time subscribers will know of my deep respect and admiration of
Japanese writer and illustrator Taro Gomi and his wonderful series of
creative books for kids.
These books are not your average colouring/activity books. Gomi draws
in a simple and childlike way and encourages kids to think outside of
the square and to be creative.
One page will invite you to 'fill the trees with birds' another
encourages you to 'draw a very small elephant walking across this
table', and another aks you to 'design the flag of the country of
rabbits'. In the picture below Ella is giving the child a 'crying' face.
The books themselves are really thick (400 pages plus) and fantastic
Scribbles focuses on
drawing and colouring, Doodles focuses more
on imagination and doodling, and Squiggles looks at
painting. We have the entire series now and I'd have to say that
Doodles is my
All three of these books are on my list of Amazon favourites that you
can see on the front page of the Kids Craft Weekly
website. Every month
I am giving away a copy of the book of your choice from this list. All
you have to do is upload a photo to the Kids Craft Weekly group photo
pool on Flickr.
I'll be deciding the winner of the July round on August 1 so be quick!
I hope you enjoy the sticky crafts from this newsletter –
would have to be some of our most successful crafts to date. If you try
them please let me know how they worked for your family.
crafting and I'll see you next time!
Sticky robot shapes
When working with contact it's really important to ensure that young
kids can easily peel the backing paper off – otherwise they
get frustrated quickly. The method outlined below is time-consuming but
it's worth it because it means they'll always get it right.
The littlies will simply enjoy peeling and sticking randomly while
aged three and up will love to build robots with their shapes. It's
worth remembering that different children require different levels of
You will need
• contrasting colours of sticky contact
• round stickers/number
stickers for embellishment
1. Cut some strips in different widths from contrasting coloured sticky
2. Fold down the backing paper about half a centimetre along the entire
length of each strip. Then cut the strips into different sized squares
3. Provide some cardboard to work on and start building your robot. I
started by asking Arky which piece we should use for the body, "the big
yellow square or the big red square?". Then I asked where he
thought the legs and arms should go.
This process continued until
the robot began to take shape.
The next time round he built the robot all by himself.
And then another!
When Ella got home from school she wanted to make her own!
absolute joy to watch my son enthusiastically work on this craft with
no assistance from me. It works really well as a first craft because if
you set it up correctly the child cannot fail or become frustrated. It
just works so well – I can't believe I didn't think of it
If you have a young child please try this craft, you will not regret it!
ultimate sticky canvas
You will need
• easel or upright board
• clear sticky contact
• odds and ends
1. Set up an easel or other upright board with a piece of clear
Peg the top and bottom securely and then carefully peel off the paper
(removing and replacing the pegs as you go) so that the sticky side is
2. Collect some odds and
ends in a box or bucket. We used wool scraps, paper scraps, foil, pom
poms, cellophane, bubble wrap, packing peanuts and other bits and
pieces from the bottom of the craft cupboard.
3. Encourage your child to stick objects onto the contact.
It was glorious to see Arky enjoying having complete creative control
over his work of art. He carefully placed objects in specific spots and
explained to me what he was making. I have never seen him so happy with
what he created – I think it shows!
This activity is a great way to introduce the joy of paper mache to
young kids – it's quick, easy and doesn't involve making
pastes or building tricky wire structures. It is rather sticky, but
then – you knew that!
You will need
• coloured tissue paper
• kid's pvc glue (kid's pvc is
simply a regular white glue which is non-toxic)
• food colouring (optional)
• a bowl (preferably plastic)
• plastic cling wrap
• something to sprinkle (such
1. Tear up the tissue paper into pieces. You'll need a fair amount of
tissue paper, for this bowl we used three large sheets of paper.
2. Make up a watery glue mixture in a jar using equal amounts of white
glue and water. Add a drop of food colouring just for fun. Note that my
children can't get enough of gender stereotyping – it drives
3. Then put your plastic bowl on the table (open end
down) and cover with cling wrap.
4. Paint on a layer of the glue
mixture and cover with a layer of tissue paper. Repeat until you're out of
tissue paper or until you feel the bowl
is going to be thick enough.
5. For extra bling, sprinkle some sequins or stars over the outside of
the bowl when you've finished.
6. Allow the bowl to dry – this may take some time (as long
as several days in winter or 24 hours in summer).
When you think your bowl in dry enough to stay in shape on it's own,
carefully ease it off the bowl and from the cling wrap. The inside of
the bowl will be wet but it too will soon dry after it gets some
exposure to the air.
I didn't allow enough time to show you our latest finished bowls
– they're still all wet and gluggy – but here's our
from a few years ago, still going strong!
For the final craft in this
issue I was considering making some colourful walking sticks with
electrical tape and feathers before it occurred to me that I had seen
the idea elsewhere. Sure enough I soon remembered that the lovely Full
Circle blog made some lovely wilding sticks and there are such
lovely pictures and inctructions I thought it best to redirect you
Besides, I ran out of time :)
By happy coincidence, 'sticky' was also a recent theme at the excellent
kid's craft blog called Unplug Your Kids. Take a look at
their sticky project and follow the
links at the bottom of the post to see all the sticky projects from
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