This week we will have our first painting activity out. Instead of setting it up on the art shelf, it will be permanently set up (as long as it's out) on a table in the Practical Life area. That is because the floor beneath the art shelf is carpeted and the PL floor is tile. Also, I don't want the children to have to carry this activity to and from a shelf.
The leaves we are using were purchased from Discount School Supply. They are already pre-cut into the shape of maple leaves and are made from heavy watercolor paper.
Here is how the work is set up on the table. From top left: sponge for wiping up spills; basket of blank leaves, jar with pencil for writing name on leaf, glass for water (with fill line marked with yellow tape), vinyl placemat, watercolors and brush. To do the work, the child takes a leaf, writes their name on it (or has the teacher help with this), takes the water jar to the sink and fills it to the fill line, returns to the table, paints the leaf, empties the dirty water in the sink, replaces the empty jar to the table, takes the leaf to a designated shelf to dry, and wipes up any extra water with the sponge.
Here is the leaf I painted when trying out the work this weekend. I was really happy with how the paper absorbed the color. It was damp, but not drippy at all when I laid it out to dry.
My plan is to cover our "Giving Tree" in the waiting area (see photo below) with our painted leaves.
When we get our painted leaves on the Giving Tree, I'll edit this post to show how it looks. I think the children will really enjoy this activity.
Edited on 10/20/08: Here is the Giving Tree covered with our pretty leaves. I think they look great. Below is a close-up.