Potato Stamped Crafts

Potato Stampers Press (11)

It just doesn’t feel like St. Patrick’s Day without a little potato art, a fun way to introduce a new painting “tool” to toddlers. The simplest of all is to make potato prints and here are a few fun ways to make that oldie-but-goodie feel novel.

Potato Stampers Press (1)

First, I set out a dish of green paint (for the Emerald Isle of course) and showed Veronika how to dip the cut sides of a raw potato in the paint, then press onto a piece of paper. Cover the paper with lots of prints and you have a pretty little piece of artwork!

Potato Stampers Press (2)

For something with more of a design element, I showed Veronika how to press four prints together so they looked like the four leaves of a clover.

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All you need to do is add a stem with green marker!

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She also thought it was neat to dip the potatoes in paint and then smear across the paper instead of simply stamping.

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We got some really neat swirls and designs like this!

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Of course there’s no need to stick with green paint, or even the St. Patrick’s theme, especially if you try this craft at another time of  year. To wit, Veronika chose a little pink paint and we made a few pink-stamped ovals with it.

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Once the paint dried, I cut out triangle and oval shapes from pink construction paper to be a pig’s ears and snout. She loved gluing these down, along with wiggle eyes.

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“He says oink oink!” she told me proudly.

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I drew on a few final facial features, so then she wanted to draw too, telling me she was adding “three black cheeks”.

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All of the above would make beautiful decorations to your home for St. Patrick’s Day, or cards to send in the mail!

Spinning Penny

Spinning Penny (4)

Balloons are always fun but balloons with objects inside are even better! And this particular version has some science thrown in, too.

To start, we wanted to see how an object would move inside a balloon, which means clear balloons are definitely best for this project. Before inflating, add a penny (or similar round metal object). Inflate and tie a knot.

Spinning Penny (1)

Now give that balloon a shake! You want to shake in a tight, circular motion to get the penny rotating. Even once you stop, the penny will “climb” the walls of the balloon in a circular motion. Travis was thrilled that he could make this work all by himself!

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The penny can seemingly defy gravity in this way because as soon as the balloon is spinning, the force of the penny pushes outward. It will stop after a few rotations, but was so much fun for Travis to watch, plus made an echoing bouncy sound.

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We intend to try this with other objects in the balloon, too, and see whether they work better or worse than the penny. Here’s the quickest of quick clips: