My husband looked out the window the other day and sighed. "What's wrong I asked?" "Those maple trees are going to start dropping their seeds soon" he responded. Hmmm.
I loved to play with maple tree whirligigs, as we used to call them as kids. However, we have several maples in the back and front that drop what seems like millions of seeds that then begin to invade our lawn and garden for the rest of the warm months. Still, I thought I'd make the best of them with the kids and have an "All things whirligig week".
Our first project, big fish little fish, comes from the book Wind Chimes and Whirligigs by Renee Schwartz. The book is probably geared more toward the elementary crowd and up, but I was able to modify it enough that Sassyfras and Juiciness could do a good part of the artistic work and I helped with the parts requiring greater coordination.
We omitted several steps in the book and used supplies that I had on hand. The book recommends using plastic file folders, but we just used paper.
After cutting the circles for the fish and punching the mouths out, I let the kids decorate their fish and glue on the eyes. I helped them punch the holes for the dowel and make the pinwheel.
The pinwheel has a thumbtack holding it to the fish, so I've supervised them the entire time they played with their fish. When they ran with their fish, the tail spun and they laughed hysterically!