Day 2: Escape to the IslandAnother directive for crafts I received was to do something to draw down the supply of popsicle sticks in our VBS inventory. Apparently the popsicle stick collection grew over time as leftovers from previous years’ crafts were put back into storage. There are some great popsicle stick crafts out there. Unfortunately, most of them aren’t easily attempted by young children in that 20 minute time frame. Because of time and safety, I couldn’t do crafts that required cutting the popsicle sticks, so we were stuck with the rounded ends. What I ended up going with was the classic popsicle stick boat:
The boat’s base is a row of sticks laid side by side. Two sticks are glued in place along opposite edges, perpendicular to the initial row of sticks. The sides of the boat can be built up by overlapping sticks, much like building a house with Lincoln Logs. The mast is a stirrer straw held in place by a spool glued to the boat’s bottom. The sail is a square of canvas that could be colored with markers and had two holes to thread it on to the mast.
I modified the craft for different age groups. The youngest children created their boats using the fat popsicle sticks or tongue depressors. Their boats weren’t much more than a square platform:
|Z's fat popsicle boat|
The middle age range—about 1st through 3rd graders—created the same design, but with the standard-sized popsicle sticks. They were also given the opportunity to build taller sides to their boats:
|Skinny stick square boat|
The older kids had a trickier design. Their boats were diamond-shaped instead of square shaped. Popsicle sticks for the base were laid down and offset a little, resulting in a parallelogram or diamond shape. They could also build the sides up as high as they preferred.
|C's diamond boat with bowsprit and crossbeam|
In the end, I think we ended up with more popsicle sticks than we started with (the irony was that in order to draw down the stash in crafts, I had to buy more in order to complete the stash). In the end, we donated the extras to the preschool at our church.
|Craft storage after day 2|