It's been awhile since I posted a Favorite from the Year, so even though it's not Sunday...I'm going for it!
So, what is a Pysanky Egg? It is a Ukrainian Easter Egg! The egg is decorated in traditional Ukrainian folk designs using the wax resist method. Fancy, right?
They are truly incredible. Most designs are geometric or relate to nature (i.e. lots of flowers). You can absolutely get lost in a Google image search. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so I always pull up lots of pictures to give my kids ideas before we even get started.
I also read Rechenka's Eggs by Patricia Polacco because you can never pass up an opportunity to incorporate literature. It is a beautiful story and the pictures of the eggs are incredible.
Summary from School Library Journal:
Babushka, a kindly, stout old woman, lives in a little house in the country near pre-revolutionary Moscow. She is renowned for the gorgeous Easter eggs that she paints so painstakingly during the long, cold winters and brings to the Easter festival in Moscow. As she is feeding hungry caribou one day, she rescues a wounded goose, names her Rechenka, and tenderly nurses her back to health. While exploring the cottage, Rechenka accidentally smashes Babushka's eggs and subsequently lays 12 beautifully decorated new ones to replace them. While Babushka is in Moscow winning a prize, the goose flies away, but she leaves one last egg in her basket. From it a gosling hatches that becomes Babushka's companion.
Finally, it is time to create a Pysanky Egg.
I found this project in a Scholastic book called Art Projects from Around the World 4-6. I won't go into too much detail on the steps of the project, because I'm pretty sure that violates some kind of copyright, but I will show you lots and lots of pictures.
After doing this project several times and tweaking materials/process here and there, I found that I can complete this project with just the following materials: white paper, sharpie/black marker, white glue, water colors, and colorful construction paper for backing. Below are my modified steps.
This is a 2 day project. Essentially, day one consists of drawing and designing the egg. I use an egg shaped template, just to make life easier. The design does not have to by symmetrical, but some kids do that naturally. I always suggest not going too small or being too detailed. The best eggs always have large simple designs and lots of color.
When you are finished drawing, outline your design in black Sharpie. Then outline again with a steady stream of glue. When the glue dries clear, you have nice little compartments to paint with the watercolors, but you can still see the black outline below the glue. It's a very cool effect!
So, what do you think? Pretty, huh?
Be sure to check out Art Projects from Around the World 4-6. Some of my very favorite projects have come out of this book. I highly recommend it. It's kinda pricey at Amazon, but I have seen it on Dollar Days through Scholastic too. So, next time you see it, download it! It's worth it.
What projects/activities do you love for spring? Link up to Favorites from the Year and join the fun!
Until next time...