April 11, 2012

Egg Coloring and More

Image by Puttiprapancha.com

We study eggs this week in addition to the Resurrection of Christ as a way to make more concrete the concept of new life.

It's time to color Easter eggs!

Thorough preparation helps this activity to go smoothly.

1.  Hard boil eggs.  I have had great success with this recipe.  Do not skip or skimp on cooling the eggs for at least two hours (speaking from experience here)!    Three eggs per child should be enough.

2.  You can use whatever type of dye you prefer.  I am a big fan of using liquid watercolor.  The colors are beautifully vivid, and there is no mixing required.  You may already have these at home, and if you choose water colors then you don't have to buy the whole Easter egg kit.  I found I never used half of what they put in there anyway.

3.  Prepare the area for the egg dyeing.  If at all possible do this outside, and definitely over a hard -possibly stain resistant- floor.  If inside, you may wish to cover the floor with newspaper.

-Old clothes for children (and yourself) and/or paint smocks
-Wipes for colored hands after dyeing is complete (there is just too much that can be touched by a three-year-old on the way to the sink!)
-Newspaper for floor
-Paper towels and cookie sheet to set eggs on while they dry
-Cookie sheet to set dyeing cups on
-Clear plastic or glass cups for various colors of dye (preferably something with a wide-ish base and no more than 5-6 inches tall)
-Slotted spoon instead of that silly metal egg dipper (that is, unless you are going to attempt the two or three colored egg)
-A good attitude.  Expect this to go well, but not perfectly:)

4.  Enjoy the process.  There is so much good conversation and vocabulary you can include during this time:  colors, changing color, combining colors (red + yellow = orange), dark versus light colors, what do they think is inside the egg?, will the inside change color, too?, favorite colors, what else is this color, etc.


Cut out large egg shapes from white construction paper.

Have the children sharpen crayons with a hand held sharpener (great for fine motor development), and reserve all the shavings.  Keep colors separate.

Paint glue onto paper egg.  Sprinkle with colored crayon shavings as desired.  Let dry.

Laminate the crayon shaving egg for a marbled effect.  Many education and/or craft supply stores have laminating machines you can use.  The cost is usually per food and quite reasonable.  You may even consider asking if your local library has a laminating machine you could use for a fee.  Is this service available at Kinko's or the UPS/FedEx stores?

Next Time
Cut an egg shape from a piece of foam board or plastic.  Anything that will not absorb paint and that can be easily picked up from a painted surface will do.  This is your printing plate or matrix.

Obtain white paper that is larger than the egg printing plate.

Allow children to paint the matrix any way they choose.  Have available a variety of colors of tempera or acrylic paint.  You may even include glitter paint.

Apply the printing plate to the paper.  The created image is called an impression.  If your child creates multiple impressions of the egg -in other colors or the same- the resulting group of impressions is called an edition.  These would be lovely displayed together.

This print-making art activity comes from The School for Little People "Play"-Book: A Curriculum for 4's.

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