Make It Like a 4-year-old!

Valentines 2008

Can you tell which valentines I made? My 4-year-old and I have been busy making valentines to give out at preschool. We actually create the valentines instead of buying the Dora or Transformers valentines at the store.

At this point my 4-year-old doesn’t even know you can buy pre-made valentines at the store. I’ve kept this little secret from her for two reasons: 1) Valentine-making is a great art project for the kids, something to keep them busy while I work on jewelry; and 2) I love to make valentines. Funny, since I don’t really celebrate Valentine’s Day. My husband and I don’t do dinner, flowers or candy. We don’t even give each other cards.

But I could sit all day with scissors and red paper and make hearts.

With 20 kids in the class, that’s a lot of valentines for one little person to make. I do my part to pitch in, but I want the valentines to look like she made them. So I get to create like a 4-year-old.

Besides being just plain old fun, creating like a 4-year-old is actually a good creativity booster. No need to be perfect. Hearts can have missing parts or be lopsided. If the whole thing falls apart, put more glue on it. Now more. Now even more glue. It’s very freeing to use supplies in excess and not care if the end results with match the preconcieved notion in your head. So give it a try. In case it’s been a while since you were 4, here are some tips:

1. Put all the stickers in one spot

2. When painting, use the brightest colors you can possibly find.

3. One color is good, but 5 colors are awesome. Mix all the colors together, then paint. Who says you can’t have brown valentines?

4. Use entirely too much of everything: too much glitter, glue that covers the whole paper and seeps onto the table cloth.

5. Use enough paint to cover 10 valentines on a single heart. Let the paint run down your arm and drip on your pants. Now that’s real painting.

5. After you finish each valentine, say, “Isn’t this the most beautiful valentine you’ve ever seeeeen?”

One last tip: wear a smock and cover the table with a vinyl tablecloth. If you really get into it, things can get messy.

And, in case you were wondering, I made the valentines on the right.