Thursday, August 22, 2013

Come join us this Fall for more Science fun!

After a summer hiatus from classes and an even longer break from blogging, Twigs & Twine is back with a fun new science-themed class for Fall! Last Spring, we had an amazing time making things explode, playing with cool and crazy substances and exploring everything from Volume and Gravity to Shadows and Light. We even had a guest visit from two little lambs!

This Fall, we will have even more science adventures as we discover the ways that science actually makes us superheroes! We have incredible powers to navigate our bodies up, down, around and through fun obstacles, our five senses make us super detectives and we can blow around huge structures with a single breath! Come explore all the fun science has to offer and of course get ready for more fun messy experiments, cool art projects and easy crafts!

Our 6 week Fall session starts September 13th and classes are held Fridays from 3:30pm-5:30pm.  Click here for more info or contact Ashleigh at for more info or to sign up!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

The Beauty that Surrounds Us

For our final gardening workshop, we took some time to look at the world around us and make some beautiful things using nature's many gifts!

We started the workshop by going on a collecting walk around the garden. Everyone got their own little basket to carry and friends collected bark, leaves, flowers, grass, ferns and sticks. 

Then we came back to the classroom and used our findings to make beautiful clay pressings! 

Clay Pressings

We started by making a flat surface with the clay (everyone made different shapes)! Then we took the things we found outside and used a rolling pin to press them into the clay. The results were so beautiful!

Some friends kept going and added more leaves, sticks, etc and a few even added beans or shells they found around the room! Finally, we poked a hold in the top of each piece and we put them up to dry overnight. These look particularly pretty if you come back later and paint them with acrylic paint although, I even like them un-painted. 

We also painted large rocks we found in the garden to make garden markers...or at least that was the plan. Everyone ended up enjoying the experience of painting on the rocks so much that no one actually got to the point of writing the name of the flower or vegetable they wanted to mark! Nonetheless, this was a fun experience for all - and it served as an important reminder that art and experiences at this age should always be about process and never about product!

To end our session, each little gardener took home a little basket with a tomato plant and two basil plants to get their own garden started or to add to it!

And of course we ended with fun in the sandbox! This has been such a rewarding first session - thank you to all my students who participated and I hope everyone feels inspired to find your inner green thumb and get out and garden with your little ones!

Butterflies everywhere...!

This session we continued learning about garden helpers and sang, crafted and planted all things butterflies! Butterflies are helpers in the garden because they are pollinators just like bees! As they collect nectar from flowers, their legs become covered in pollen. Then, as they move to the next flower, they unintentionally pollinate along the way. To help these little helpers, we made seed bombs filled with seeds that butterflies love - hopefully our bombs will bring lovely butterfly gardens everywhere!
Seed bombs are little balls filled with tons of seeds which we can plant either at home (if you have plenty of space for lots of flowers to pop up) or we can perform a community service by planting one in a vacant lot or field. All they need to grow is water and plenty of sun!

To make our seed bombs, we combined 1 part seed mix, 3 parts compost or soil and 5 parts clay. We started with a flat disk of clay. then added our soil and put our seeds in the center. 

Then we rolled the mixture into a ball and our seed bombs were ready!

Butterfly Crafts

Next we did two fun little butterfly crafts...we created butterfly window collages and also made our own tissue butterflies!
Before the children arrived, I cut out butterfly shapes from construction paper. Then, I pasted the leftover frame onto a piece of contact paper. When the kids were ready, I simply gave them each a butterfly frame and a variety of different ribbons cut up into small pieces. This was a particularly great craft for little ones.
We also made good old tissue paper butterflies! We used markers to decorate a wooden clothes pin. Some friends even made faces on their butterflies. Next, we selected antenna (made from pipe cleaners) and then chose our wings (1/2 piece of tissue paper). The last step was to attach a long piece of string...for flying!
Everyone had so much fun flying their butterflies around the yard. Even the moms and dads had a go!

We finished up our butterfly workshop with homemade butterfly graham crackers (another fab recipe from - click here for the recipe!) and other yummy treats. We can't wait to watch our seed bombs sprout...hopefully many butterflies will follow!