Upon returning home from a field trip to Jamestown, my husband suggested that we do a diorama to record our visit. "What's a diorama?" the kids asked and I realized that they had not yet been exposed this most academic of crafts. Once I gave them a run down, they were all in! Work proceeded on and off throughout most of Monday, and was finished on Tuesday morning. Do you remember doing these in school? What a blast!
My son came up with the idea of planting a corn field, so we searched for good "stalks" and came up with toothpicks. Luckily we had Halloween Play-Doh (black!) for soil and in went the crops. I surpised the kids with the little settlers in the fort. I printed a picture of the kids trying on armor at Jamestown and glued it to cardstock. They looked right at home with the aluminum foil canon and the berry canon balls atop the stockade walls.
My daughter really liked the animal pelt scraping at Jamestown, so I recreated a little pelt stretcher for her out of twigs, felt, and embroidery floss. The kids helped cut out little felt pelts and came up with cracked safflower seeds for the shell scraper.
They kids added little Indians (complete with a story) and even a felt baby Indian.
We also like the making of canoes at Jamestown, so we recreated the scene in our diorama. The kids found a piece of branch and "carved" out the center with a rock. After coloring in the center with a black Sharpie and adding a construction paper flame and a dab of mud to control the burning, we had a canoe making operation underway. They added another cracked seed for a scraper.
You can see the Susan Constant and the tip of the Godspeed in the background. The waves were added to show the tough trip they went through to get to Virginia.
OK, enough of all this construction paper and glue - time to get back to the knitting!