Friday, January 24, 2014

Clean-Up Fun

Empty box-scissors, tape
(Markers, stickers, etc. as desired)
If you want your little ones to think that clean up is fun, all you have to do is turn an empty tissue box into a loud-mouthed monster who likes to eat trash! They will be eager to "feed the monster!"

Simply flatten the box by carefully tearing it open where it is glued. It is easier to decorate a flat surface. Also, this shows how it can be stored and stacked with your construction paper to be used again later.

You can make your monster any way you like, but I think it is especially cute to give a monster some funny hair that sticks straight up. I simply cut strips down on the flap that is above the "face" portion of the box. This can be curled, colored, beribboned, etc. to make your monster unique. If you are using a large, rectangular box without this "hair flap," you may want to add yarn hair, an antenna, a hat or something you think is funny. ANY tissue box will work with a little adaptation as long as the opening is the mouth.

Cut down on one flap to make "hair."
Add some facial features to you trash monster. 
I like to add funny eyes.  Plastic google-like eyes can be added, but a simple sticker-magic marker drawn eye will suffice. Let children be creative in making their monsters--the trash eating monster can be an arts and crafts activity in and of itself--and it's reusable.

Reshape the box and tape the side (which is now the bottom) so that it stays closed and sits on the craft area to "gobble up the trash" from an arts/crafts activity. Children love to take their monster to the trash can and empty out his mouth (or shake trash out of is head!). This activity makes clean up a fun activity.

Once the trash is emptied into the real trash can, the tape can be removed and the monster can be folded flat to be stored with other craft items. It can be used again and again.
Once the monster is done, it will be fun to feed it trash! 

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