While reading is a great way to empower your child to learn- drawing, writing, and creating their own book can also be a fantastic learning experience for them. We created this Big Red Barn book to use along with our farm unit study, as we learned about each animal on the farm the children drew their own versions and practiced writing the names.
I like how this project encouraged literacy and creativity at the same time, using both sides of those growing brains! Your child can make their own book to take along on a field trip to the farm or just use their imagination sitting at the kitchen table. This little barn door book is simply adorable and fun for kids!
Big Red Barn Art Activity Book
Margaret Wise Brown’s Big Red Barn was the inspiration for this activity. It has a similar language and feel as one of our all time favorites- Goodnight Moon (also her book). Big Red Barn is a must have addition to your book collection and as part of a farm unit study.
For each book you will need:
- 20 small popsicle sticks
- clear tape
- red paint
- white paint
- white cardstock or construction paper
Have your child paint 16 of the craft sticks red on one side, allow them to dry, flip and paint the other side. or you can just prop them up against something and let them dry.
Next you want to have them paint both sides of the remaining 4 craft sticks white.
Once your paint has completely dried you can begin to assemble your book. Take 8 of the red sticks and line them up evenly, glue one white stick at an angle from one corner to another, be generous with the glue to hold them all in place. Repeat with another 8 red sticks and one white one for the other side of the book.
Use a straight edge razor to cut the width of one stick out of the middle of two white sticks, for me this was about 1/4″, it will depend on the size of craft sticks you are using. This helps your cross pieces of wood lay flay. Glue the cut white pieces on each side of the barn doors to complete them. Allow glue to dry fully.
I wanted to keep the binding really simple so I took 3 sheets of cardstock and cut them so that each sheet was 4″x 9″.
Next I folded them lengthwise back and forth like an accordion at every 3″ and taped all three together.
We secured one section to the back of the “barn door” with a generous amount of glue, then repeated at the end of the paper with the back of the other door. Allow the glue to dry completely before closing up your book or it will stick together and tear your pages.
To keep the book closed we put a rubber band around the center.
Your child can use their books to sketch animals, glue animals photos they have cut from a magazine, create farm animals with fingerprints, use stamps, stickers, or whatever they like. I think that this lends itself well to a variety of ages, from younger preschoolers to middle elementary students.
How will you encourage your child to document the farm study in their very own Big Red Barn books?