Activity:

Paint a Butterfly Birthday Card

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What You Need:

  • White cardstock paper (8 1/2" x 11")
  • Colored construction paper (preferably slightly bigger than the white paper)
  • Tempera or poster paints
  • Felt-tip pens
  • Glue

What You Do:

  1. Fold the white paper in half and ask your child to paint two large blobs, one on top of the other on one side of the fold, so that it looks like one half of a flying butterfly. The paint must be applied quite thickly so that it transfers successfully to the other half of the paper.
  2. Encourage her to quickly put some drips of contrasting paint on the blobs.
  3. Have her carefully fold the paper along the fold, whilst the paint is still wet, pressing down on it from the outside edge of the paper to the fold.
  4. Ask her to carefully unfold the paper; the image should now look like a butterfly!
  5. Whilst the paint is drying, fold the construction paper in half.
  6. Get your child to write a birthday message on the front of the construction paper card (with the fold on the left).
  7. Once the painting has dried, ask your child to use more paint and felt tip pens to add details such as antennae and a body. Encourage her to try and keep the image symmetrical.
  8. Glue the folded butterfly painting inside the construction paper card.
  9. The recipient will be greeted with a surprise butterfly when she opens the card!

Variations:

Invite your child to make a cluster of symmetrical butterfly pictures and cut them out. When they are dry, punch holes on the tops and hang them on a length of ribbon as a decoration.

If you want to take this activity a step further and help develop your child’s spatial skills, you can play the following game: Get your child to think about shapes that are symmetrical (hearts, circles, squares etc.). Fold another piece of paper in half and paint half of one of the shapes that your child has suggested with paint. To check her answer, ask her to fold the paper over and press down to make a print.

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