Today I want to share an art project that my kids and I did in class this morning. Most of my kids are very hung up on who is your best friend, and who doesn’t want to be your friend anymore. Whenever I overhear these arguments, I usually emphasize that we are all best friends. I decided this morning to do an art project that would help illustrate this point for my class.
We made a Friendship Tree for our classroom! I explained that everyone in our class is best friends, and even when we do things that upset each other or hurt each other’s feelings, we should always remember that we are friends, so we should use kind words and apologize when we do something wrong. Then I told them we would be making a friendship tree to hang in our room and remind each other that no matter what, we were all friends.
1 white foam board (I got this at Dollar General)
Washable finger paints (assorted colors)
1 black permanent marker
I started by drawing the outline of the tree on the board. I used the brown marker for this, then colored in the trunk with the brown crayon so that the outline would stand out better. Once that was finished, I drew some skinny branches extending out of the tree, and tried to make enough branches for there to be room for 12 leaves (handprints).
Then, one at a time, I called my kids to me and painted their hands. I prefer to paint their hand with a paintbrush over letting them dip it in the paint, because they tend to get too much paint on their hands and it turns into a big gushy hand print that takes FOREVER to dry, and usually looks more like a blob than a hand print.
I let each child pick what color paint they wanted. (Note- I used all colors for our friendship tree, since I wanted it to be colorful and more imaginative, rather than an ordinary tree.) Once the hand was painted, I helped them find a spot on the tree to make their hand print.
As soon as they put their hand print on the board, they stood beside me and cleaned the paint off their hands (so that it wouldn’t get all over their clothes and I could keep an eye on them while they cleaned it off).
I also wrote each child’s name with the permanent marker beside their hand print. It was a pretty time-consuming process, but finally we finished.
I am SO proud of how cute this turned out! The kids were so excited about it, and can’t wait to show their parents the hand print they made. I plan to hang this over my desk so that we can all remember that we are friends this year.