gleeful grandiva

creative living for big and little kids

JOIN ME ON A FUN AND MAGICALLY WACKY TRIP 

fun and magical trip picture

 

Let me take you on a fun and magically wacky trip.

 

The magic comes with the fact there is no need to pack your bags, deal with airport security and you can travel half way around the world and back in the space of two hours.

Intrigued? Join me.

 

Before we start you need to fill in your magical passport with all the important information – name, age, favourite colour and favourite number.

Next, check your boarding pass for accuracy then hop into your seat and get ready for a fun adventure.

Today you’ll be travelling with Wacky Airlines.

Ladies and gentlemen, my name is Tami and I’m your chief flight attendant.

On behalf of Captain Wacky and the entire crew, welcome aboard Flight WW017, non-stop service from the Wacky Workshops studio.

As this is a magical journey, there is no need to take you through the safety procedures. Please ensure your seat backs and tray tables are in their full upright position and that your seat belt is correctly fastened. Thank you.

At this time we’d like you to close your eyes and imagine yourselves flying high above the clouds, You will know you’ve reached our destination when you hear foreign music – it will be the traditional music of the country we are visiting.

FUN AND MAGICALLY WACKY TRIP – FIRST STOP AFRICA

Can you hear that music? It’s the traditional music of Africa and that is the first country we are visiting today.

Africa is the world’s second largest continent (a large, continuous mass of land), after Asia.

There are 54 countries in Africa. More than 2000 recognised languages are spoken on the continent.

It is the hottest continent in the world and the second driest (after Australia).

Africa is host to the world’s largest desert, the Sahara, which is bigger than continental USA.

It also hosts the world’s longest river, the Nile (a total length of 6,650 kilometres).

It is also home to some of the coolest creatures, such as the world’s largest land animal, the African elephant. This amazing creature can weigh up to seven tonnes.

And the world’s tallest animal – can you guess what that is? A giraffe can grow as tall as six metres.

fun and magically wacky trip picture

The world’s fastest land animal, the cheetah, also lives in Africa and the continent’s jungles are home to the world’s largest primates – gorillas.

AN AFRICAN ANIMAL COLLAGE

fun and magically wacky trip picture

You can create a beautiful African animal collage, using cut out pictures from magazines and animal shape cut-outs.

MAKING MASKS

fun and magically wacky trip picture

An important part of African culture is their use of masks in rituals and ceremonies. African masks are highly sought after by art collectors. They are considered among the finest creations in the art world.

It is believed the earliest masks were used in Africa before the Palaeolithic era.

They often represent the spirit of animals, ancestors or mythological creatures. They are made from wood, pottery, textiles, copper and bronze.

Today we are visiting a mask making centre where you can create your own mask. You will notice the mask shape, oval like a human head, has already been cut out for you from cardboard. Your mission is to decorate this, using markers, crayons, cut up cardboard and paper, wool, feathers and anything else you can think of.

CREATING ADINKRA DESIGNS

fun and magically wacky trip picture

At our next stop, you will create an Adinkra design like those made by the people in Ghana.

Adinkra clothes were traditionally worn by royalty and spiritual leaders during special occasions.

Adinkra cloth is stamped and patterned with traditional symbols that each have their own meaning. People in Ghana decorate the cloth by using a black dye made of bark.

They draw lines on the cloth to divide it into squares. Next, they carve symbols into calabash gourds, press the gourds into the dye, and stamp the symbols onto the fabric.

You can use a plastic fork, dipped in paint, to make the black grid lines and form a square.

Then carve out the shape of your choice from a potato, dip it in paint, and stamp that into the middle of your square.

Once you’ve finished your design it’s time to go back to your seat on the Wacky plane as we are visiting another country today.

Please stow your artwork and information about Africa in the overhead compartment and then strap yourself in.

FUN AND MAGICALLY WACKY TRIP – NEXT STOP CHINA

Close your eyes until you hear the next foreign music.

This is traditional Chinese music and the country we are visiting is China.

China is the third largest country in the world and belongs to the largest continent. Do you remember what continent that is? If you answered Asia, you are right.

China has the largest population in the world. It is officially known as the People’s Republic of China.

The capital city is Beijing.

About one-third of China’s land mass is made up of mountains. The world’s highest mountainMount Everest sits on the border between China and Nepal.

China has thousands of rivers. The two main rivers are the Yellow River and the Yangtze River, the third-longest river in the world. The Giant Panda is found near the Yangtze River.

fun and magically wacky trip picture

The Great Wall of China

China is also home to the largest man-made structure in the world, The Great Wall of China, which stretches an amazing 8,850 kilometres (5,500 miles). The mortar used to bind the Great Wall’s stones was made with sticky rice!

FUN AND MAGICALLY WACKY TRIP TRIVIA

  • Every year is represented by one of 12 animals in China. Do you know which animal year you were born in?
  • People race boats with dragon designs at a Chinese festival in the spring.
  • 7th-century Emperor Tang of Shang had 94 ‘ice men’ who made him ice-cream. How cool is that?

 

The ancient Chinese invented paper, the magnetic compass, printing, tea, porcelain, silk and gunpowder, among other things.

Arts and crafts have a long history in China. The Chinese were among the first to use silk, jade, bronze, wood and paper to make art.

The ancient Chinese art of tangram puzzles is a popular mathematical problem-solving activity,

Also known as the ‘seven pieces of cleverness’, the tangram puzzle consists of seven geometric pieces which normally form a square.

The pieces, called ‘tans’, are used to create different patterns.

Can you make your own tangram puzzle?

fun and magically wacky trip picture

Tangram puzzle bunny

CREATING A CHINESE RATTLE DRUM

Music has a long history in China too. Drums were seen as powerful magic weapons and used in battle in ancient China.

The Chinese rattle drum is one of the oldest styles of toys in China.

Today you are going to make our own using a CD, a wooden stick, four beads and two pieces of string. Tie the beads to each end of your string. Use sticky tape to attach the middle of your two strings to the back of your CD. Use some more sticky tape to attach the wooden stick to the back of your CD. Decorate the front of your CD with colourful glitter paint. When it is dry you can play the rattle drum by rubbing the stick quickly between your two hands so that the beads hit the CD.

fun and magically wacky trip picture

Chinese rattle drums

CREATING A TERRACOTTA SOLDIER

 

The Terracotta Army consists of thousands of life-size models representing an army to guard the tomb of China’s First Emperor. The site includes soldiers, horses and chariots. Separate parts of each statue were moulded out of clay and then they were fired, assembled and painted.

The site had lain underground for more than 2000 years. Then, in 1974, farmers digging a well uncovered the army. It is one of the greatest archaeological sites in the world.

It took around 37 years to make the Terracotta Army. Today we have less time but you can use air dry clay to make your own terracotta soldier.

fun and magically wacky trip picture

Terracotta soldier made by a six-year-old Wacky Workshops student

Ok, it’s time to return to the Wacky Workshops studio, so gather your China information packs and artworks and hop back into your seat. Close your eyes, click your fingers and we are back. It’s a great way to travel, don’t you think?

I hope you enjoyed flying with Wacky Airlines today.

Aside from gaining all the benefits of creativity on this fun and magically wacky trip,  you learned about different cultures, which helps to expand your mind.

Our next flight takes off during term III, when we will have new adventures in different countries. You can learn more and find out how to book your seat by visiting The Wacky Workshops Page.

Have a creative and gleeful week, Tamuria

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16 Comments

  1. As someone who loves elephants, I would love to see them in their natural habitat in Africa. I know experiencing Africa close-up and personal would be a trip of a lifetime for me. Your craft projects are really a wonderful inside look at Africa, Tami. They look like a lot of fun and a way to have a hands-on experience while learning more about African culture. As far as China, I do know I am an Ox, but I have no real desire to visit there, even though the history is fascinating to me. Thank you for your tour of these two grand countries and the fun crafts to honour them!

    • The real thing would be amazing, Beverley. I’ve always been keen to see all those incredible African animals in their natural habitat. China is also on my list – we love Asian countries as they are so exotic and different and the history is quite amazing. I am an Ox too! I’m a little jealous of my second son – he’s a dragon. I have a chart is the studio so one of the first things I do with the kids is to determine which animal they are and if there is time, we’ll do a craft around that as well.

  2. What a Wacky adventure that was so fun darling. I especially loved visiting Africa – now and 8 years ago. That is where I met my beloved husband in the northern Mediterranean city of Tunisa. I always had a piece of Africa in my heart and now it is even bigger. Thanks for the worldly trip, I learned so much.
    Teresa Salhi recently posted…Women and MoneyMy Profile

    • What wonderful memories you have of Africa, Teresa. Glad your trip on Wacky Airlines enhanced the memories and learning. 🙂

  3. These projects remind me of my favorite book ever. It was a craft project book I bought at a hospital fundraiser. We had so much fun with it. I love that you tied it to countries. Your blogs are so much fun to read. I look forward to them.
    Cathy Sykora recently posted…Five Tips for Website SafetyMy Profile

    • The book sounds really fun, Cathy. It’s great to get kids involved in learning about other cultures by doing crafts to represent them. Thank you for your lovely words re my posts. I appreciate them and your support.

  4. I love all the projects you have as part of our journey through Africa and China. So much fun.
    I didn’t know that Africa was the hottest continent in the world but it does make sense. Thanks for the tour!
    Alene A Geed recently posted…Jasper ; Fascinating FactsMy Profile

    • Alene, glad you enjoyed your tour with Wacky Airlines and the craft projects to go with it. It is so much fun to share information and creativity.

  5. Meghan

    I love trivia, so this was much fun to read. My favorite fact is about the Terracotta Army since I’ve seen the site online and in movies but didn’t know much about it. 37 years to make it? WOW! Archaeology is fascinating to me. The Wacky Workshops soldier provided great enjoyment and a bit of a chuckle–I love it. 😉

    • The Terracotta Army really is amazing, Meghan. And to think they still have more to discover! The Wacky Workshops soldier is so cute and I love that the student even managed to make a weapon. How clever.

  6. Wow this looks like an absolutely magical trip. I’ll visit Africa one day and walk the Great Wall of China.

  7. What fun! As soon as I read the title, I started humming “Truckin'” from the Grateful Dea. “What a long strange trip it’s been…” So I was thrilled when you were making rattle drums. Music sings to the soul.

    • The rattle drums were a big hit, Jennifer. It’s always extras fun when we make crafts we can play with and yes, music sings to the soul.

  8. Enjoyed this trip. I love traveling. Now, I can’t wait for the other countries. Haha!

    I am sure the children had a great time with this. Thanks for the mini tour.

    • The kids had a great time, Lorii. I’m already making fun plans for our next Wacky Airlines flight. 🙂

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