Friday, January 21, 2011

The Echidna and the Shade Tree

The boy's had lots of fun making Echidna's with playdough and craft match sticks. Playdough is always a great opportunity to develop fine motor skills.

I love giving the boy's different tools to paint with, so painting spikes on an Echidna seemed the perfect opportunity to use cotton buds. Master 4 drew himself an Echidna after reading the story and then used a cotton tip to create spikes. I didn't have any brown paint so we used some of my foundation!! I'm all about using whatever you can around the house for craft activities!!

The Echidna is a strange and fascinating animal that calls Australia home. The Echidna is a rare mammal that lays eggs, and it resembles a porcupine with large, pointy spines protruding from their backs. My boy's really enjoyed creating their own Echidnas after reading The Echidna and The Shade Tree.
The first exposure I had to Aboriginal picture books was through the series of books compiled by Pamela Lofts. I remember these from when I was at primary school. Published in 1980, even then I could tell that these books were pretty revolutionary: simply told traditional Aboriginal stories illustrated and told by Aboriginal people. I think they still work beautifully today, and I’ve hunted down some copies for my boys: How The Birds Got Their Colours by May Albert and Pamela Lofts and The Echidna and the Shade Tree by Mona Green and Pamela Lofts.

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