For an easy art project that “does its own thing,” make apple faces with your kids and watch them age right before your eyes!
• Cotton balls
• Craft supplies
• Paper clips
Peel the skin from apples. Next, take a knife, spoon or flat tool and carve facial features into each apple. If your son is very young, you might ask him to describe the features to you while you try your hand at carving. The deeper you carve, the more pronounced your apple face will be when it dries. Try adding tiny beads for eyes and dry pieces of spaghetti for teeth.
Once you've finished creating, soak the little apple heads in salt water for several hours. This prevents them from rotting. Remove them from the water, pat them dry and set the apple heads on a windowsill or shelf where you and your son can see them.
How to accessorize your aging apple faces
Over the course of the next few weeks as your apples lose moisture, the faces will slowly transform to look like wrinkly, shriveled old men. Once they've stopped shrinking, add accessories such as glasses or a hat using paper clips, bottle caps, felt and other craft supplies. Give your old man head a moustache, a beard or hair with bits of string or cotton. Wrap them up for gifts or keep the little guys around somewhere visible. Their wizened appearance is always good for a smile.
How to make puppets
Create puppets by sticking a wooden skewer into the apple head before you soak it in salt water. While the head is “aging,” make clothes, hands and feet for your puppet out of material, felt, buttons, ribbon and other odds and ends. When the apple has shrunk, sew or glue the clothes onto the skewer near the base of the head. Make sure you can hold onto the skewer to move your puppet around.
Related: Puppet theatre: Setting a grand stage for your puppets
Excerpted from Come on, Dad: 75 Things for Fathers and Sons to Do Together by Ed Avis (Lobster Press, 2002). All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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