Wednesday, August 13, 2014

diy magnetic butterfly {that is also a chalkboard and a felt board}

This project is a favorite of mine and the children's! There are three ways the children can interact with them. They are a both a magnet board and a chalkboard and the backs are covered in felt to use as a felt board. I came up with is on the spot at Michaels whilst shopping for butterflies for our week of The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I love it when ideas work!
These wooden butterflies were a great size, not too small, not too large. They were thick and sturdy and while I wish they were flat, the details were not too cumbersome. At two dollars a pop, I snatched two up and ran to the paint section to search for magnetic paint. The only magnetic paint they had was from Martha Stewart. It was a bit on the pricey side but I really wanted to make this project and was very happy I had a coupon to use so I justified the purchase and popped it into my basket. I gave the butterflies two coats of magnet paint and one coat of black chalkboard paint that I had previously purchased from Michaels as well. It was a small bottle, 2 oz, from CraftSmart. While the paint was drying, I glued magnets to happy colored shape buttons purchased from Oriental Trading, and cut out tiny shapes from colored scraps of felt I had from another project. To finish it off, I glued orange felt to the back of one butterfly, and yellow felt to the back of the other.
We covered our  butterflies in buttons, colored them with chalk, pretended they were sandwiches and practiced our symmetry (for some of the children I designed one side of the butterfly while they matched the other and vice versa). We also sorted out our magnetic buttons into cool and warm colors (which was an impromptu project when one of the children asked me if purple was a cool color, how awesome is that?) We never got out the felt pieces for the back as the task of covering the entire surface with brown chalk (and only brown chalk) was much too enticing for ALL of the children.
 I am really really pleased with how this project turned out and how the children engaged with it. Now I have to think of some other projects for y magnetic paint. Any suggestions?


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