Saturday, July 11, 2009
This is a great activity to complete anytime, but especially in the Spring when the flowers are all beginning to bloom. You can use real flowers, in fact it would probably be even better with real flowers, but I purchased a variety of faux flowers so we can use them again and again. I have also heard of people crafting felt, paper, and fabric flowers. If your children are able, this would be a great activity for them to complete before flower arranging!
It is very simple to prepare this activity. I found a basket, put in some of the blocks of florist foam (which are super easy to cut to fit with a knife), and trimmed down bunches of faux flowers (I used the plastic stem type, not the kind with wire in the stems). I placed the basket on a tray that also held the flowers. All my children needed was a simple demonstration that you can stick the flowers into the green foam, and off they went! They arrange them, pull them all out, and start over again. They are always so proud of what they create, and when they are not using the activity, it helps to make their area more aesthetically pleasing! You don't even need to use a basket and foam. Just pull out a vase or a large drinking glass and leave the stems on the flowers longer to stand up straight.
There are many reasons for this activity- motor coordination, taking turns, learning different flower names, sorting of colors, eye-hand coordination, and visual discrimination practice. It is a very tactile experience, and especially if you use real flowers, it engages many of the senses. As always, know your own children, and supervise accordingly. Glass vases can break, and small pieces sometimes come off from the faux flowers. Keep it fresh by changing flowers for the seasons, and providing a variety of containers for the flowers. This is also a wonderful extension for the parts of a flower nomenclature cards or puzzle. Yet another simple but fun Practial Life task-they won't even know they're learning! :)