Celebrate the penultimate trifecta of art, poetry, and pie with these soft sculptures inspired by former children's poet laureate of the U.S. Jack Prelutsky's perfectly hilarious poem, "Percy's Perfect Pies." I've done this with up to 22 students, grades K-5, at the beginning of the school year and it's about choicemaking, tacky glue & scissors skills, imagination, & silliness. I started by reciting the poem, which names 24 ludicrous pies (my faves: Possum Penguin Prickly Pear & Skunk Asparagus Supreme.) Then I provided kids with a tin with attached crust (leaving 1/3 of the circumference open for stuffing), stuffing fluff, and all the ingredients in small bins on their tables for merry, munchy mayhem. Tacky glue in small tubs applied with q-tips anchored most ingredients, with a few warm glue guns standing by for chaperoned use by grades 3rd and up. I sealed the crust with hot glue as everyone worked, and early finishers decorate a pie sign to identify the ingredients in their own personal perfect pie.
5" tinfoil pie plates
6 1/4"-inch circles of a stretchy fabric like fleece (bought on sale!) & snipped in at least 5 places like real pie crust
craft glue in small tubs (make your own by letting white glue sit outor a couple of days, stirring now and then)
q-tips to apply glue
warm glue gun & sticks
Pie ingredients can include anything glueable with tacky glue (I do afix googly eyes to chenille stems with the warm glue gun, though)
cotton balls (I used real cotton from an field down the road)
scissors (it's nice to have a pair of child-sized fabric scissors available for grades 3 +
Prep Steps Below Photos
1. 6 1/4" rounds from stretchy fabric like on-sale fleece. Clip slits in each (grades 3-5 can clip their own with fabric scissors; easier to clip them all.)
2. Using hot glue, fix at 3 points around the edges, then glue 2/3 of the crust to edge of pie plate, leaving 1/3 open for stuffing.
3. cut an assortment of craft fur into small pieces and set in small containers.
I set out on each table:
-- craft glue in pots on plates with q-tips
-- markers/crayons/scissors in a tri-compartment bin
-- collage papers
-- craft fur/feathers/oddments
-- pie signs
Inspired by Phoenix children's author Amanda Malik-Ahmadi's wonderful debut picture book, 10 Ballet Dancers, which is gorgeously illustrated by Kathrine Gutkovskiy, this project is great for the littlest dance and art enthusiasts, and can be embellished with yarn, ribbon, fabric, or painted paper--whatever you have on hand.
This dragon is made from a 9"x12" sheet of 1/4" foam from the craft store, cut in half (so you can make two, with lots of foam left over for other figures!) The wings are cut from construction paper. I used no glue in connecting the pieces--none is necessary because the notches cut in the foam fit snugly together. For the manga figure, I copied a picture that I'm really embarrassed to say I cannot find again. But you can make any figure stand up, if you leave 1/4" extra foam on the bottoms of the feet, then cut holes in a square of foam and insert. Another option is glueing a small bit of foam behind the feet to prop the figure up then glueing on the figure. I used acrylic craft paint for the dragon, and washable marker for the manga figure. Both work great on foam. So does water and chalk pastel!
I made these cute little guys out of a 9"x12" sheet of 1/4" foam from the craft store, cut in half (so you could make four Dinos out of one sheet.) This foam is marvelous for making 3-D "puzzles" by cutting notches in each piece and sliding them together. You can also make these from corrugated cardboard or cereal boxes. (Card stock tends to be too flimsy.)