A few weeks ago I bought this little patio set for our back deck.
I love the design, and as it’s (finally) warming up, I’m looking forward to spending more time outside. In the summer I eat breakfast on the porch almost every morning, and the deck is home base for so much of the kids’ outdoor play. So what if I haven’t showered, I’m exhausted, and nothing I’m wearing is clean or matching? At least my patio is stylish.
I’ve barely had a chance to break these in, so about three percent of me is bummed to see my new chairs covered in dirt, rocks, and smashed Azalea blooms.
But the rest of me is delighted to see that the chairs are the perfect height and style for Mary Virginia’s bloom and leaf bistro. If I’d known, I might have gotten them a long time ago.
And, whatever. That annoying three percent can just chill out anyway, because I know a guy with a hose.
I don’t know how much knowledge you want to give them, but…. you can boil flowers and make dyes. Get some cheap white t-shirts, and they can have a summer wardrobe. They can also dry them and make potpourri. Some flowers are edible, such as nasturtiums.
I used to do a Sunday School class, and I always strove to have something fun, a meaningful activity beyond simply coloring.
For Mother’s Day, I baked cakes in flower pots (the safe ones, not the lead ones). They then decorated them with the edible flowers. A store in our area sells the in the produce area.
Learning by doing. Research shows that people retain knowledge when it is associated with an activity. Younger children have activity based education, but around 5th grade, it starts to be phased out, and learn becomes a regurgitation model.
But, look at some recipes for dyes from flowers and berries. I think your kids would love collecting them, and then dying t-shirts.
that sounds so fun! that’s one of the many things i’ll tuck away for “activities to do when I don’t have an infant.” all the kids would love it so much!
I used to teach high school chemistry. I started looking at home schooling things, as this was about 5 years before the internet. The general class kids couldn’t relate to brown bottles of chemicals on the shelf. But, if I used household things they saw every day….
Dying shirts isn’t that hard. You basically boil the flowers or berries, the amount depending no how deep of a color you want, as well as how long you leave it in the dye. And vinegar or another mordant to set the color. Exactly like Easter Eggs.
If you REALLY want to get creative, make paint from blueberries, which requires sour milk, and get a wooden letter or some other unfinished wood piece from the craft store.. An outside activity, but how people used to make paint. Can you imagine how a house would smell, and how long it would smell?
But dyes and edible flowers are fun. Hanes white t-shirts are cheap.
Another fun summer treat is making ice cream in ziplock bags. I focused on the chemistry, but it is just a fun treat.