I’ve been making “Stuffy” the snowman since the late 80’s when I used to sell lots of them at Christmas craft shows. I finally decided to post him on the blog, as he is do-able for a student activity, even for younger children + he's a great source for reinforcing measurement, as well as listening and following direction skills.Here's How To Make One:
Send a note home to parents that you need a clean washed white tube sock and another colored sock. Heaven knows we all have wash machines and dryers that seem to literally eat a sock or two so that the missing pair is nary to be found.
I include “socks with out mates” in a “Please Save” list, that I send out at the beginning of the year as a “heads up”.
If you get tube socks like the ones pictured, you can use the striped part for the hat and don’t need an extra sock!
I also have a list for parents to sign that’s entitled: “I’m willing to donate something for a special activity”. This project would fall under this category, as you’ll need a bag of “fluffy stuffing” the kind that people use to stuff pillows. You can purchase it at any fabric store.
You’ll also need a cup of un-popped popcorn or rice per student. This makes Stuffy stand up perfectly.
While at the fabric store, look for remnants of plaid flannel that’s on sale. I’ve tried ribbon and it just doesn’t look as cute for a scarf as real flannel does.
Each student needs an 18-inch long by 1 ½ inch strip. I pull a few strings off the ends so it looks like a real scarf.
Loosely tie the scarf around the middle of the snowman, tight enough so that it makes a “head” appear.
Cut your tube sock so that it is 9 inches long if you want to make a short “Stuffy Snowman” like the one pictured.
I have made larger ones using the entire white tube sock, but the smaller ones sold better, stood nicer, and looked more “adorable”.
If you want to make a “family” of snowmen as I did for us, then you’ll want to use the entire sock for the “daddy” snowman.
Pour the cup of popcorn in the bottom of the sock.
Lightly stuff with fluff.
Tie the top with a piece of yarn and knot it.
Cut the top of the colored sock off so that you have 6 inches of sock.
Tie the top with a piece of yarn. Knot it, and then tie a bow.
Flip the bottom edge up 1 inch for a brim.
Some socks are harder to cut and get a straight line. This doesn’t matter.
It’s a knit cap and ragged looks country great!
You can always roll the brim edge in if you’re picky.
No need to sew on. Just stick it on the snowman’s head and it will stay put.
For the eyes, I paint eraser-size wiggle eyes black; for the nose, I paint a mini wiggle eye orange and hot glue them on. I used burgundy puffy paint, and squeezed on a smile.
2 dark buttons and a painted wooden heart, also hot glued on, complete “Stuffy”
Click on the link to view/print the article's directions and pix. Stuffy the Sock Snowman.
Scroll down for more fun activities and ideas, and be sure and pop back tomorrow to see how Dominic the Domino Snowman will help your students with simple addition and subtraction!
Do you have an idea to share? I'd enjoy hearing from you: firstname.lastname@example.org and if you use a freebie I'd really appreciate a comment! Thanks in advance.
Wally the Welcome Doorknob Dangler Snowman
As promised, here is my other recycled snowman project. This is as inexpensive to make as the tin can snowman.
I went to the Home Depot, told them I was a teacher, showed them my project and asked if I could please have 20 paint sticks. They said, “No problem.” Wal-Mart, Meijer’s and other places that sell paint have also been generous.
Later, my class composed a thank you card and everyone signed it. If your parents don’t have a problem with photographing their children, it’s always cute to include a photo, with students holding up their adorable creations.
Wally the Welcome Snowman is a “doorknob hanger”. A dab of hot glue or a large glue dot will hold the yarn tie in place on the back. Simply slip him over the doorknob and declare whether you’d like it to snow or melt.
Run off my heart templates on red construction paper and laminate.
Students cut out two. They’ll need two pairs of Velcro dots.
After they have finished painting, one Velcro dot will go on the backs of the hearts, the other on the front and back of the snowman. (Whatever heart you are not using, gets tucked away on the back so that you don’t lose it. )
You’ll also need mini Popsicle sticks. To expedite things, glue them to the paint sticks. This will help your students know what to paint white and what to paint black.
Even tho’ a hot glue gun works extremely fast, I find that young children are rough with what they work on and these little sticks have a tendency to pop off, so I glue them on with E6000.
It’s a stinky glue, so make sure you have proper ventilation. Short of breaking them off, they will stay put!
Children paint the bottom of their stick white. I use the acrylic paint that comes in the little bottles for less than a dollar at Wal-Mart. You can also get the larger size for around $2. If you want your snowmen shiny, buy GLOSS paint.
Students can hang on to the hat part to paint the back of their paint stick, the front should be dry by the time they are done, so they can lay them down to dry. In the afternoon, paint the hats.
I buy plaid ribbon during the after Christmas sales. Cut 6-inch long strips and wrap them around the paint stick where you feel the snowman’s neck should be.
I glue these on with Aileen’s tacky glue. Do this BEFORE students paint on a face, as it will help them know where to put their face on.
Using Q-tips, have students dot on a face, heart and buttons. I put a tiny dollop of the various colors of paint on small paper plates in the middle of their table.
Toothpicks work best, if students want to make a little snowflake or holly on the hat.
Be sure and model how to paint these things, so they have step-by-step directions of “how to”. Just as with the tin can snowmen, it’s a good idea for little ones to practice on a piece of scrap paper before they paint their face on their paint stick.
I use a fine-tipped black flair, to write the children’s last name on the bottom of the paddle, as many of them have long names and this would be difficult for them to accomplish.
Click on the link to view/print the pattern, directions and pix for the Snowman Paint Stick
Be sure and pop back tomorrow for how to make an adorable snowman out of a sock!
Do you have a fun snowman project that you do with your students? I’d enjoy hearing from you! email@example.com
I give credit for using reinforcement holes to construct a snowman to my fellow teacher Anita. Mrs. Kosack's has lots of cute ideas for her kindergartners. I've used reinforcement holes in the past for the various shapes, but this is just too cute. I revamped her concept with this idea just in time for 100 Day!
Click on the link to view/print the 100 Day Reinforcement Hole snowman patterns, pix and directions from this article. Would love a comment if you print or download my freebies. I truly enjoy hearing from you! firstname.lastname@example.org
Be sure and pop back tomorrow for another 100 Day idea! Click on the link to view other 100-Day Freebies!
1-2-3 Come Make Some Shaving Cream Stuff With Me!
If you haven't heard of using shaving cream in the classroom yet, you and your students are missing out on a lot of fun. Yes, it's a little bit messy, but oh the joy of hands-on learning.
Clear the work tables, or student desks and have children don a paint shirt. Shake up a can of shaving cream (they sell a variety at The Dollar store) and squirt a few big dollops in front of each child.
Tell them to smooth it out to make their very own "whiteboard!" Using their index finger as a "pencil" have students write letters, numbers, or draw shapes. This is a super-fun way to whole group assess.
As you call out each letter, number, shape or whatever, students draw that on their board. When you've checked everyone's work by simply a glance, have them "erase" their board by smoothing it over, so you can call out something else for them to write/draw. After you review, give your students one last dollop for them to write their name or draw whatever they like.
An extra bonus is that the shaving cream takes off sticky glue residue, as well as crayon and ink marks. Depending on the fragrance you chose, your room should smell simply wonderful. The cream also makes your kiddo's hands feel smooth and soft. Take a teachable moment to talk about friction, as students rub the table top or their desk. The shaving cream will disappear, and their hands will feel warm.
Shaving cream is also an excellent "frosting" or "snow" for winter craftivities. The results pack a huge "Wow!" affect and were some of my students' favorite artwork. They make an outstanding decoration for your hallway, but hang them above any one's reach, so little fingers aren't tempted to poke the fluffy "snow." To make the "snow frosting," mix equal parts of Elmer's glue to non-menthol shaving cream; mix quickly to whip up a frothy-goopy consistancy.
Students take spoonfuls, plop them on their project and then smooth with a Popsicle stick. Shaving cream craftivities need at least 24-48 hours to dry, depending on how thick the artwork is. Here are 2 of my all-time favorite shaving cream creations.
Shaving Cream Frosted Cookies Ornament: I have my students cut their cookie out of light brown paper, frost it, and then add their photo to the middle.
If you have an Ellison Die Cutter at your disposal these cookies are adorable cut into your student's initials. Add a few real candy sprinkles and these honestly look so real, and good enough to eat! Frosted Cookie Ornament pattern
By far, my favorite craft that I ever made with my Y5's was the shaving cream snowman. I hung my students snowmen as a border, just under the ceiling in the hallway. We always got zillions of compliments and everyone wanted to know the secret of the awesome looking snow!
Before hand my students drew their snowman on a pre-cut piece of tag board. Little ones have a tendency to either draw way too small or way too large, so demonstrate drawing 2 simple circles “just the right size.” For really little ones, I suggest having these pre-drawn and have included a template for you. Make sure students have written their name in the corner of their creation.
I collected a large tub of pieces and parts to decorate the snowmen via a note home making a request, searching my house, taking apart jewelry and going junking.
Put several scoops of “stuff” in paper bowls and set 2 on each table. Give students 5-10 minutes to pick out 2 eyes, 1 nose, something for a mouth and 3-5 items for their snowman's buttons.
It’s very important to have children design their snowman BEFORE you give them a dollop of shaving cream, because they need to work rather quickly spreading their “snow” with a popsicle stick. It’s helpful if they arrange their parts on the side, so that they don’t forget what they chose for each feature. They get so excited when they get the “goop” that they sometimes forgot and this really helped in the past.
I also did the shaving cream board, discussed above a day or two before. This really helped to avoid children's curiosity of how shaving cream felt and they got down to the business of creating a snowman, instead of getting off task and simply playing with the shaving cream.
Mix up a huge bowl of “fluff” and use a wooden spoon to give each student enough dollops so they can “frost” their snowman. I also demonstrate how this is done. When they are satisfied with the results they gently plop their pieces in the appropriate places.
Remember to remove the bowls of decorations before you give them the frosting to avoid children taking more and putting it all over their snowman, instead of making it look like a snowman. After they have completed decorating, set aside in a designated "keep out!" drying area.
You will need at least 24-48 hours of dry time. When you return to school they should have dried and really “puffed” up! They look simply amazing! Click on the link to view/download the Shaving Cream Snowman “craftivity.” I hope you have a delightful time with these ideas. If you take pictures, I'd LOVE to hear from you and see your "mess-terpieces!" email@example.com
Thanks for visiting today. Feel free to PIN away. To check out all of the creative-educational things I spend way too much time pinning, click on the big heart to the right of the blog. I have lots of winter boards. I blog and design daily, so I hope you can pop in tomorrow for even more FREEBIES.
"If you don't mind smelling like peanut butter for several days, peanut butter makes good shaving cream!" -Barry Goldwater