Monday, September 16, 2013

Prospect Park as Classroom

Lina told me she wanted to find "interesting things" to draw at Prospect Park. (The next step would be identifying the plants, trees and flowers she discovered.)

We went to Prospect Park Lake...since it's so peaceful. We sat on a bench a little while to feel the breeze and then we went near the water to look at the ducks.

While eating lunch, we spotted stilt walkers heading to the Unity Showcase Festival.

We walked over to Vanderbilt Street Playground...where she balanced on and walked across the rope for the first time.

She must have been in a rope conquering mood...because she also made first attempt to climb the huge geodesic rope climbing structure. She didn't get very high, but she was fascinated by the positions she could take in the air, by draping her body onto the ropes and holding on like a little monkey.

Then we walked to Harmony Playground from Vanderbilt Street Playground...on a 3/4 mile trail that was very peaceful, so she could examine the surroundings along the way and draw whatever she liked. She was very serious about documenting the "most interesting things" in her journal.


On our way back home, we spotted a pink frozen yogurt truck and Lina had her first taste of frozen yogurt, which she said tasted "nicer than ice cream."

A scholarship...but at what cost?

Lina was awarded a full scholarship to attend Studio Creative Play's Studio Terra program, a kindergarten alternative in Park Slope. Lina knew it was very special to be given a scholarship and she was grateful. At $25,000 a year, I couldn't possibly afford this program on my own.

Was it the right fit for us? To find out (it's a rambling, honest analysis)...

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Building an Art Installation with Melissa Diaz

We kicked off September doing what Lina loves best. We attended a fun workshop together to make art. This was special...because the kids (ages 4 to 7 in our group, with toddlers at an earlier slot) added their own creations to an art installation made by Melissa Diaz for an upcoming art show at Hootenanny.

Melissa led the sculpture making session and the kids had a lot of fun. It was cool for Lina to be a part of the installation and have her work on display at Hootenanny, with her name listed as one of the kid artists.

She also made a couple of things to take home, since there was such a nice assortment of colorful fabrics, papers, straws and found objects to make art.

Also, Lina decorated sticky paper (which was in the shape of a leaf) and taped it to a real branch (she liked that it looked like a flag) and then Melissa placed the stick in the front window of Hootenanny Art House.

Melissa does a great job making art playful and accessible to everyone.

If you can make it to Park Slope this Saturday, September 7...bring your families to Hootenanny (426-428 15th Street near the corner of 8th avenue) anytime from 6pm to 10pm for an art opening party. Groove to music by a DJ, drink some wine and view Melissa Diaz's creations, as well as the installation that was made by Melissa and the kids who participated in the workshops. Melissa Diaz makes and sells beautiful terrariums; Lina loved the ones with dinosaurs in them. Come by and take a look on Saturday.

Sprinkler Season's Last Hurrah at Prospect Park