Book: blog tour: Teach yourself visually crafting with kids

by kath_red on 11/04/2011

in Books

I am so pleased and excited and proud to be part of Jennifer Casa’s blog tour for her new book Teach Yourself VISUALLY Crafting with Kids published by Wiley. I have worked with Jennifer on a few projects, and followed her blog for a few years and know what a beautiful crafter and lovely person and creative mother she is – and am very proud to know her. So onto the book.

There are so many good things about this book – Crafting with Kids is for smaller children, pre-school age I think it is aimed at. And gives parents lots of ideas for weekend activities they can do with their kids. I also have to say that it is a big book, lots of projects, within lots of different themes. And the projects themselves are clearly laid out (as you can see by the page excerpts below), with photos and explanations of materials required and steps to take. Older kids could use this book to tackle these projects on their own too.

The chapter on ‘Spring cleaning’ is all about making home decor projects from recycled materials (sun-catchers and patchwork lanterns); ‘Summer vacation’ – outdoor play and enjoying nature (Garden gnome and wind chimes); ‘Back to school’ – hands on play and planning the year ahead – educational projects (memory game and alphabet toss); ‘Winter wonderland’ – games to brighten up wintry days (snowflakes and birdseed garland); ‘Happy holidays’ – celebrate special occasions (Glow in the dark ghost wreath and felted wool valentines); ‘Thanks bunches’ – ways to thank friends and family (wild flower gift garden and vegetable wrapping paper); ‘Lets party’ – organising a handmade kids party with party favours and games (party pencil favors and no trouble bubbles); and ‘Game time’ – family games to make and play using materials you already have (peg pals and scavenger hunt).

Whoo! as you can see there is a lot in this book – with 5-20 projects per chapter, this book will keep you and your little family entertained all year – no worries about being bored on weekends or without inspiration come party time!

Follow along on the tour with chances to win a copy of the book

Yes there is a giveaway here too: Wiley and Jennifer Casa are offering a signed copy of Teach Yourself VISUALLY Crafting with Kids (Teach Yourself VISUALLY Consumer) to one reader! So leave a comment here telling us your crafting with kids biggest / funniest adventure. – 48 hours

Winner will be notified via email.

Tuesday, April 5 (release date)  –  JCasa *handmade
Wednesday, April 6  –  The Crafty Crow
Thursday, April 7  –  Sparkle Power
Monday, April 11  –  WhipUp
Wednesday, April 13  –  A Stitch in Dye
Friday, April 15  –  Smile and Wave
Monday, April 18  –  Elsie Marley
Wednesday, April 20  –  Maya*Made
Friday, April 22  –  Stitches in Play
Tuesday, April 26  –  Aesthetic Outburst
Thursday, April 28  –  Artsy Crafty Babe


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1 Becky M April 11, 2011 at 5:50 am

my daughter is only 2 so we haven’t had a lot of crafting adventures. she doesnt like getting her hands dirty so fingerpainting is always a challenge.

2 Meg April 11, 2011 at 8:24 am

…I teach kindergarten, so my crafting adventures are multiplied by the amount of students that I have – last year, (with both morning and afternoon kindergarten) I would say biggest crafting adventure was tie dyeing 48 T-shirts with my 5 & 6 year old counterparts.

3 Gina Power April 11, 2011 at 8:37 am

I was a Brownie leader and the biggest disaster we had was trying to make glitter covered magnets with a group of 20 – they were heart-shaped for Valentines Day and we had red glitter ALL OVER the hall of the church where we met. It took a very long time to clean up after that meeting :)

4 Vanessa April 11, 2011 at 9:14 am

Visiting from Crafty Crow. My funniest crafting adventure with the kids was one I wasn’t supervising! They called me into the bathroom to show me “angels” they made. A whole roll of toilet paper soaked with water, and smushed up into lots of wads pasted on the wall. They were so proud! We took pictures of their first solo masterpiece! Creativity at its finest!

5 Nancy April 11, 2011 at 9:51 am

My adventures in crafting with my daughter are always a little like stalking a wild creature. She tells me repeatedly that she isn’t creative and she hates crafting. So I get all set up to make stuff and sit down at the table and begin, but I don’t invite her to join me. Eventually she’ll sit down and say, “Well, I’ll just try one.” Then she makes something so beautiful that it outstrips anything I’ve done. But if I say so, then–whoosh–she’s off again to do her own thing.

6 Rachel M April 11, 2011 at 11:05 am

I think just everyday drawing times are the best from my 3-year-old. Her explanation of her drawing is always sweet or funny, such as, “That’s me and a loooong stick, because I never drew myself with a long stick before!”

7 Valerie April 11, 2011 at 11:09 am

We made felted wool easter eggs yesterday – the kids’ eggs look great, mine came out awful!

8 Simple Mama April 11, 2011 at 11:42 am

After an afternoon of painting, The Boy decided it would be fun to fingerpaint every single surface in our bathroom. With Tempera paint. Thankfully it cleaned up well enough, but I was left reminding him why we only paint on paper that mom lays out.

9 turtleturtleturtle April 11, 2011 at 12:00 pm

At 2 and a half, my fella will grab my hand and say “It’s craft time Mammy”. Anything with glue, glitter and stickers is a hit, although we’re giving glitter a bit of a wide berth at the moment. I still haven’t quite gotten it out of the floor since our Christmas crafting marathon. We might break it out again next Christmas, by which time he’ll have (hopefully!) outgrown the impulse to eat the salt dough!

10 Tracy April 11, 2011 at 12:19 pm

I must say watching my kids blow out eggs last week was a humorous experience. Lots of ick and oohs when the white and then the yolks came out of that tiny hole!

11 Anna April 11, 2011 at 12:23 pm

I actually want to win this to give to my folks for my little sister. This past christmas my little sister was cutting all kinds of shapes out of paper, with amazing accuracy for a 3 year old. We also made crafts from pipe cleaners and beads. My dad told me horror stories about trying to glue felt to other felt, it never sticks and always gets crusty. I think this book would be great for them, and hopefully they’ll give it back to me when I have my own kids.

12 kelli April 11, 2011 at 1:37 pm

Every day is a crafting adventure! I need some new inspiration for using our craft materials — we love paper, pens, fabric, scissors, yarn, etc. I love the ghost idea above — we often throw craft parties for our kid friends around holidays (or things like Spring Break! When everyone’s home from school! Aahh!).

Our biggest adventure in crafting was remodeling our house — we did lots of drawings to come up with ideas. We even created a 3d foamcore model of the house. (Then the kids built cabinets — not really art, but crafts with wood and glue.) Now we’re working on art for the walls and displaying kid crafts. Those are pretty big projects!

13 Anna April 11, 2011 at 1:50 pm

As a after school art teacher I get to enjoy a lot of fun art experiences with children. “Our kids” love it so much they just want to come back year after year. They actually beg us to open the class for grade 4 as well so they could come for just one year. And last year we also extended our class from 12 to 15 kids which makes messy arts completely crazy for us, the two teachers. Despite that I LOVE my job and I’m just as excited as the kids to try out are new art that always results in a great display that shows of the kids own creative take on the project

This book will not only be great for my new adventures at home with my 2,5 year old, but shared with the wonderful children in my art class.

14 Sita Gilly April 11, 2011 at 1:51 pm

My funniest adventure with my 7 months old daugther was when she was 2 o 3 months old and with my husband look for something easy and colourful to estimulate her and decor the room. So we made some Kirigami figures and she loved it so much and get so excited she could not sleep that night.
Well I hope I can win the book. Thank you

15 merie April 11, 2011 at 1:55 pm

How about most recent? Saturday morning my daughter woke me up with a long monologue about wanting to make a sculpture of a dog with paper and glue. Eventually we found a method that worked for her (a dog was made with paper and glue) and for me (did not involve running to a craft supply store at 6:30am on a Saturday – not that such a thing is possible, anyway!).

16 Celeste April 11, 2011 at 2:32 pm

Well, our biggest art adventure was probably taking my 4 children under age 5 to a messy collage craft at the library. But my favorite art experiences are just at home with the kids, especially my two oldest (both 4yo). They are such fun to work with these days.

17 se7en April 11, 2011 at 4:40 pm

Oh I just love the look of this book there isn’t anything we don’t want to try!!! Those button flowers are just so very cute!!! Craftiness is the tie that binds my kids together… I love the way that all my kids across the ages can craft around the table doing their own thing at their own pace. Our biggest craft adventure is probably clearing the table before dinner on a daily basis!!! My kids can get really crafty about that!!!

18 Carolyn April 11, 2011 at 4:53 pm

I have a 3 year old son and I also take care of a 16 year old boy with autism. Needless to say, they both love sensory projects. Last summer I spread out a large tarp in my art studio and laid down a huge piece of paper (actually 8 easel size papers taped together) and put blobs of fingerpaint around the paper. The boys wore just their bathing shorts and both of them got completely messy stomping and moving their hands around in the paint. It was a lot of fun. The door of my art studio leads right out to the backyard so I sprayed them down with the hose when they were all done.
I am always looking for crafty ideas to do with them (and also the class of preschoolers that I also teach). This looks like a fabulous book. Thanks for having this giveaway!

19 Christina April 11, 2011 at 5:32 pm

I don’t know if this fits the bill, but it speaks to general “funnest” ideas. It seems that whenever *I* come up with an idea, something I’ve found on the Internet, seen in a book, etc., the kids have kind-of a fun time with it (there are exceptions), but when it’s something THEY’VE discovered, invented, found in a book, then it’s the bomb. People (even kids) like to discover things for themselves. I’ll just have to leave this book hanging around the house and let them discover it for themselves!

20 Shellie Dee April 11, 2011 at 5:33 pm

i have a son with allergies and tried to make cake pops with all safe ingredients. they were tasty but not as beautiful as the real thing.

21 Malealyn April 11, 2011 at 7:25 pm

I’m not sure about funniest crafting moment. I will say that in my years of substitute teaching, the craziest days were always when I was the Art Teacher. Craziness is the only way to describe 30 Kindergartners or First Graders with paint brushes running around the room!

I love Jennifer’s blog, I’m sure her book will not disappoint! Thank you.

22 Heidi @ Mom's Crafty Space April 11, 2011 at 7:54 pm

My three boys and I run into all kinds of funny situations in crafting, but I’d have to say that our recent foray into papermaking was probably the biggest and messiest crafting day we’ve EVER had!

23 Jennifer S April 11, 2011 at 8:09 pm

I teach art to pre-k through 8th graders and just about anything involving paint and 2/3 year olds gets crazy – fun but crazy!

24 Misti April 11, 2011 at 10:30 pm

After moving into a home with NO carpet, I felt liberated. We had some huge pieces of paper to paint on and laid them right on the vinyl flooring, not worried about the paint getting on the floor. Got some generous glops of washable paint laid neatly out on the paper and let the kids get to work (4 and almost 2) painting. Being a bit amateurish, I didn’t realize they would soon start to get hand, feet, and yes, belly prints on the paper… and then the floor!! It was hilarious seeing the rainbow colors of footprints throughout the entire house!! Even the deck. We had a total blast, took a good bit of pictures, and it goes down as the messiest craft adventure we’ve had yet!

25 Helen April 11, 2011 at 10:30 pm

My almost 2 and 3 year old were painting nicely on the back deck. The phone rang so I went inside to get it. Can’t have been gone more than a minute or two, but returned to find that my daughter had tired of painting on paper and transferred her artistic skills to my son’s white-blonde hair! He thought it was great! It took a week to get the green and orange out of his hair!

26 Di April 11, 2011 at 11:44 pm

Making stuff is always a popular activity with my 3.5 to son. I am always bookmarking projects I find on the Internet to try out with him, and he loves picking things out from some of the kids craft books we have. I’m putting this book on my shopping list!
A recent project: The other day before breakfast he decided he wanted to make himself a laptop computer. By breakfast time, with only a little bit of help from me, directed by him, he turned a shoe box lid and another piece of card into his own “computer” with coloured paper stuck on for “keys” and a colourful picture on the “screen”. Kids imaginations can be wonderful!

27 sarah davies April 12, 2011 at 5:19 am

My daughter and I have just got into doing a new craft project every day. We have just moved to a new area and my husband is working 12 hour days there we need something to get through long days. My 6 month old son is not that great at sleeping so I had to go and attend to him after I had set up some painting. I came back to find that my daughter had changed to face painting… her face with the blue paint. She was so proud of herself as she really loves pretending to put on make up, usually without the paint :)

28 Erin K. April 12, 2011 at 1:35 pm

I think possibly the messiest craft we’ve done was when we did Pollock-style paintings. My oldest even had paint between his shoulder blades. It sure was a blast though!

29 Deidre April 12, 2011 at 9:33 pm

For our kids birthdays’ we make pinatas. With a different theme each year, we have made some very exciting (stange) creatures! Eventhough, we have been doing this for 8 years, it seems, it gets messier every year!

30 Terri April 13, 2011 at 9:04 am

My two girls (4 & 2) love arts & crafts! We could have so much fun with this book. My biggest crafting adventure was when we took a sheet to the backyard, acrylic paint, & a lot of alphabet letters. We stamped & stamped & stamped. That sheet was them adopted as the official fort making sheet!

31 Amy G April 15, 2011 at 7:57 am

My boys love messy crafts or art projects. I remember them using tempera paints outside one particularly nice summer day. Since I know that these can stain clothing, I had the boys strip down to their underwear/diaper. They were covered in paint and dirt (that they had incorporated into their work) when the neighbor walked over to say hi. At first I was mortified that my boys were in their private clothes. Then I realized how hilarious they looked and we both had a good laugh.

32 Bridgett April 15, 2011 at 10:25 am

This looks like a fabulous book! My 4 & 5 yr old would love these projects-and me to jump start them!

33 Carrie April 16, 2011 at 6:02 pm

I think my biggest project was the year I was teaching dinosaurs in 2nd grade and we made a life size, albiet baby, teradactyl (sp?) that hung from the ceiling!

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