Preschoolers and growing things and making crafts go together like a bacon-tomato-and-lettuce sandwich. Your child is naturally curious about the world around him, and “why” is his favorite word. Feed his curious mind by helping him grow his own grass and create grass-themed craft projects. Your little farmer will stay entertained as he learns, and, as Kathleen Conezio and Lucia French say for the National Association for the Education of Young Children, your child is an "active, self-motivated learner who learn[s] best from personal experience."
1. Grass Monsters
To introduce your preschooler to spring and the concept of live plants, plant some grass seed. Fill the top of a knee-high pantyhose with a combination of soil and grass seed. Help him shape it into a ball and tie it at the top; sprinkle with water. Attach googly eyes and draw a mouth; when the seed grows, your child will have his own grass monster. Alternatively, use paper cups. Help your child draw a mean, scary face on the side of the cup. Soak a cotton ball in water and place it in the bottom of the cup; fill the cup with potting soil. Place seeds on the top of the soil and carefully poke them into the dirt. Add a small amount of water. Place the cup in a sunny window and cover with a plastic bag.
2. Hawaiian Luau
Throw a Hawaiian-themed party or make “grass” accessories to just hula around the house! Create a hula skirt with a brown wrapping paper waistband and skirt, creating a fringe from the skirt's hem almost to the waistline. Attach a small piece of hook-and-loop fastening tape to one end of the skirt with the matching piece on the skirt’s opposite side. Wrap the skirt around your tiny dancer, put a flower “lei” around her neck and let the hula begin! For Hawaiian-themed accessories, cover foam soft-drink cooler covers with mini-grass skirts. Using raffia, follow the directions for the grass skirt to create a mini-skirt for the cover. Help your child heap tropical-flavored candies inside the cover.
Use coconut to make green Easter grass for decorating. Place a cup of flaked or shredded, sweetened coconut in a zipper plastic bag; add eight drops of green liquid food coloring. Seal the bag tightly. Let your child shake the bag until the coconut begins to turn green.Use the coconut grass as a decoration on or around Easter cupcakes or a bunny cake. Alternatively, place the coconut on a small cookie sheet and help your child arrange jelly beans on the "grass" for a simple, edible Easter table decoration.
For a fun grass-themed craft, use pastel-colored sponges, a ruler, a permanent marker and some grass seed and create a grassy cottage. Cut out sponge house shapes, moisten and construct the sponge house; spray with water and sprinkle grass seed over the roof and yard sponges. Spray again and store in a sunny, warm place. Soon grass will sprout all over the roof and yard. Save your child’s empty liquid yogurt containers; wash and dry them. Attach pieces of fabric to the containers to make dresses and googly eyes. Fill the containers with soil and sprinkle in some grass seed. Mist with water and watch the ladies grow green hair!
- Education.com: Plant Pets
- Education.com: Make a Plastic Cup Monster!
- Disney Online Spoonful: Hawaiian Grass Skirt
- Making Friends.com: Luau Can Coolers
- Pillsbury.com: Colored Coconut Easter Grass
- Disney Online Kaboose: Easter Grass
- Disney Online Spoonful: Little Grass House
- Family Fun Crafts: Grasshead Ladies
- Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images