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Invitation to Paint and Decorate a Christmas Tree

The story Pick a Pine Tree written by Patricia Toht and illustrated by Jarvis is about the magic of the Christmas season traditions that friends and families take part in. One of the most important of all is picking out and taking home a tree.

After reading the story, we invited the children to explore Christmas trees in two different ways.

Invitation to Paint a Christmas Tree: For this invitation we used recycled cardboard, poster board paper, and foraged eucalyptus leaves, twigs, and Colorations BioColor Metallic Paint. We invited the children to freely paint the trees on a vertical surface. Painting vertically encourages 1. Shoulder/Elbow Stability 2. Bilateral Coordination 3. Midline Crossing 4. Wrist Extension/Pencil Grasp 5. Visual Attention and Hand-Eye Coordination 6. Spatial Awareness 7. Sensory 8. Core Strength and Posture.

Visual arts deeply affect children, for it is one of the most important forms of communication. Painting at the easel has a fluidity that is different from other art media that children use because when they paint this way, they express and honor their creative artistic style more freely. With open ended painting they are given a foundation to look at the world with the confidence they can accomplish a goal by honoring their creativity.

Invitation to Decorate a Christmas Tree with Loose Parts: For this invitation we used wooden tree cut outs, moss, wood rounds, and pony beads. We invited the children to freely create and decorate their own Christmas trees with loose parts.

When a child uses loose parts to create drawn out images, shapes, or designs invitations, it gives opportunities to work on spatial awareness, exposes them to different forms of art, paying attention to detail, and enhancing their language skills as they communicate what they see or what they are doing. As they manipulate the loose parts to fit inside, outside, or around the designs they are enhancing their fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and shape recognition.

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