Saturday, November 26, 2011

A Simple Homemade Nativity

Tonight I decided to make a simple Nativity set that some of my Turkana kids can put together next week. I have a few boys coming to help me put up my tree and decorate.  The next day a few girls will come over and make some cookies.  I thought it would be fun if each of the kids could make their own Nativity to take home.  The problem is that I don't have any craft materials here and I can't find them in town.  

So, I had to put my creative hat on and use what I have.  What do I have?  I have colored plastic clothes pins, matches and some match boxes if I take all the matches out, some small cotton balls, some old tin bottle caps (brownish gold in color if I scratch off the coke logo), some white card stock, a stapler, glue  and some old rags/ material.  

The match box can obviously become either a baby or a manger.  I kinda made it be the baby and the manger all in one.  I drew on the goldish/brown bottle cap a face with the eyes closed for sleeping.  I covered the match box with some material and opened it up.  I stuffed part of it with wadded up paper and glued some cotton balls to the bottle cap and the edge of the bottom of the match box.

For Mary and Joseph I drew a semi-circle with a tab in the middle at the top on the card stock.  If you make this, make sure to make the semi-circle a little bigger than your clothes pin.  You need Mary and Joseph to sit on this card stock and not the clothes pin.  I made a pattern to use for this and the clothes.  Then I cut out the card stock and material to match the pattern.  I laid the cloth over the card stock and wrapped it around until the two edges met in the back to make a cone.  Then I stapled the cloth/card stock together.  You don't have to fix the cloth to the card stock as the staple will hold them together at the bottom.  The tab at the center top of the card stock and cloth will be pushed inside the cone and your clothes pin will grab the tab and hang down in the center of the cone.

As you can see in this picture, I glued a match stick to a bottle cap.  I am going to use this as the head.  I think I will put a cotton ball between two bottle caps and glue them together.  That way, I can still have a brownish/gold colored face for Mary and Joseph instead of white.  I can also then draw a face on them.  I am not finished yet as I am waiting for the glue to dry.  The white paper coming out of the top of the cone (in the 1st picture above) will be replaced by the matchstick and bottle cap faces.  The match stick will go in the top of the clothes pin along with the card stock/ cloth tab and be grabbed by the clothes pin.

So, there is my simple Nativity set.  If you have any ideas to make it better before Tuesday - let me know!  I will have stuff cut out for the little kids and probably have the match stick/ bottle cap faces done except for drawing the faces.  That way they can be taken home the same day they are made.  My glue is not quick drying so I need to do that ahead of time.

I think this will be fun for the kids and give them something to decorate their homes with too.  So, that is my simple project.  It doesn't take a lot of time and gives them something fun that they made.  I will get to see if I am correct next week.  I'll take some pictures and let you know.  Have a great weekend!

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