• October Take-and-Make Kits

    Bring home a fun new project! You can now register to pick up a Take-and-Make Kit from the Youth Services desk. Here are the instructions for each kit:


    Toddlers and Preschoolers: Texture and Leaf Rubbing

    Young children create fascinating patterns and designs, while engaged in tactile exploration of natural materials. 


    Materials provided for texture and leaf rubbing:

    • (4) rubbing crayons
    • (1) Textured rubbing plate
    • (1) Textured leaf rubbing plate
    • (1) Tote bag
    • (6) sheets of lightweight paper



    You will need to collect leaves of different shapes and sizes.




    1. Gather Leaves

    Grab your tote bag and head out for a nature walk. Collect leaves of various shapes and sizes.  Make sure the leaves are dry.  (Flatter leaves work better, so do newly fallen ones).


    Conversation ideas for your walk: Ask your child to talk about what they see. Point out different things like animals (birds, squirrels, etc) and plants (trees, flowers, budding leaves, etc). Ask your child to find something of a specific color.


    2. Return Home

    Remove your leaves from the bag. If other items were collected, consider having your child sort the different items.

    Possible points to discuss:

    • Each leaf is different in size and shape - none of them are exactly the same!
    • Talk about the different textures of the leaves. How does the leaf feel?

    3. Position a leaf.

    Find a flat area to work. Place a leaf with its bottom side facing up.

    4. Place paper over the leaf.

    Put a sheet of paper over the leaf.

    5. Rub a crayon.

    Rub the side of a crayon over the leaf. As you do this, you'll see the colored areas start to take the shape of the leaf.

    6. Rub over the entire leaf.

    Continue until you've rubbed over the entire leaf.

    7. Remove the leaf.

    Remove the leaf from under the paper. This completes the basic steps for making a leaf rubbing.

    8. Make more texture rubbings with the textured rubbing and leaf rubbing plate provided.

    Try using different colors. You and your child can compare and contrast the differences between the textured plates and the actual leaves.


    Don’t be afraid to overlap the leaf rubbings to create a stunning picture! Enjoy!



    Grades K-2: Leaf Rubbing Resist Art


    (Cat not included!)


    Things you will need in addition to the what is included in the kit:

    • Leaves!
    • Cup of water




    1. Take the items out of the box.


    2. Use your bag to go on a leaf hunt! (Make sure you go with a grownup or have permission to go leaf hunting on your own.)


    3. Gather leaves that aren’t too crunchy or too soft.


    4. Take your leaves back inside.


    5. Fill a cup with water.


    6. Place leaves under one piece of paper.


    7. Rub over the top of the paper with a white crayon. Make sure to use the side of the crayon.


    8. Remove the leaves from under the paper.


    9. It won’t look like much since it is white crayon on white paper, but this is where the watercolors come in. Use your water to wet your brush and apply the watercolors to the paper.

    10. Watch how the leaf rubbings take shape as the areas with the crayon wax resist the watercolors.

    11. Let dry and enjoy your masterpiece!



    Grades 3-8: DIY Sparkle Bowls

    Make a glittery, decorative bowl through a fun and relaxing process.

    Mod-Podge takes several hours to dry completely. This project works best if you have two days to complete it. 

    Note: Sparkle Bowls are not food-safe!Use your Sparkle Bowl to hold trinkets, coins, jewelry, or other small items -not food or drink.


    In addition to the kit, you will need: 

    • Newspaper or scrap paper 
    • Scissors



    1. Lay out a sheet of newspaper or scrap paper to protect your tabletop.

    2. Pour some glitter into one container of Mod-Podge and stir with the craft stick to combine. You can use a little, or a lot! The more glitter, the more sparkly your bowl will be.

    3. Place the silicone mold, curved side up, on the table. 

    4. Paint the glitter-glue over the surface of the mold, then cap the glue and rinse out your paintbrush.

    5. Let the bowl dry completely - this will probably take a couple hours. The Mod-Podge will dry clear, so you’ll just see the glitter once it’s dry. 

    6. Paint a second coat, cap the glue and rinse out your brush again, and let the bowl dry again. 

    7. You can do a third or even fourth coat if you'd like a stronger container. 

    8. Once the sparkle bowl is completely dry, carefully peel the silicone mold away. Trim the edges with scissors. 

    9. Reuse the supplies as many times as you wish!

    Watch this video to see how to make Sparkle Bowls:


      Youth Services Assistant Librarian Alyssa 


  • September Take-and-Make Kits

    Bring home a fun new project! You can now register to pick up a Take-and-Make Kit from the Youth Services desk or through Parking Lot Pickup. Here are the instructions for each kit:


    Toddlers and Preschoolers: Spray and Drip Painting



    Materials provided for Spray and Drip Painting:
    ● Watercolor paper (3)
    ● Spray bottles filled with liquid watercolor paint (3)
    ● Pipettes (3)
    ● Empty plastic containers (3)


    Spray (Bottle) Painting: help strengthen grip and control while having fun spray painting with a
    spray bottle!

    ● Arrange the watercolor paper in an area that you envision best for this activity- We
    highly recommend somewhere outdoors! (Outside on the grass, thumbtacked to a tree,
    clipped to an art easel).
    ● Provide your child with the prefilled squirt bottles and let them go to town!
    ● You will need to allow this to dry. We recommend leaving it in grass and placing rocks
    around the edges to avoid it blowing away.

    Drip Painting: Using pipettes is a great way to strengthen fine motor skills and help get little
    hands ready for writing.


    ● To use the pipettes, pour some of the liquid paint (found in the squirt bottles) into the
    plastic cups.
    ● Squeeze pipette, place squeezed pipette in paint cup, release finger grip to suck up paint
    ● Squeeze pipette over paper to release paint.

    Looking to turn this into an educational activity?
    - Add letters or numbers for your child to spray or drip on as you call them out. This
    activity would be great for letter recognition, letter sounds, hand grip, fine motor
    control, and following directions.
    *Adding water to the liquid watercolor paint will give you more paint but less vibrant colors.


    Grades K-2: Tissue Paper Painting



    Things you will need in addition to the items in the kit:

    -cup of water




    1. Take the items out of the box.

    2. Cut the colored tissue paper into smaller shapes. A variety of sizes and shapes will make your artwork more interesting!

    3. Arrange your tissue paper shapes onto one of the white watercolor papers.

    4. Use your paintbrush to apply water all over the tissue paper. Make sure to get everything nice and wet so the colors bleed through.

    5. Wait for the paper to dry.

    6. Remove the now dry tissue paper from the watercolor paper and discard.

    7. Enjoy your watercolor masterpiece as is or...

    8. Use the watercolor art as a background for more art with your black permanent marker!



    Grades 3-8: Kindness Rocks 



    1. Take your rocks, markers, mandala stencils, and phrases out of the box.



    2. Take some inspiration from the phrases sheet and use the markers to write something nice to a loved one…




    3. …use the mandala stencils to make a calming design…



    4. …or just draw something silly and sweet to give to a pal.



    5. There’s only one rule for making kindness rocks: do it with kindness!

    6. Once you’ve made a kindness rock, give it to someone you care about.


      Youth Services Assistant Librarian Alyssa 


  • Take-And-Make Kits at the Library

    You can now register to pick up a Take-and-Make Kit during the Barrington Area Library’s Parking Lot Pickup hours, bringing a fun new art project home to explore. Here are instructions for each kit:


    Toddlers & Preschoolers: Contact Paper Stained Glass and Nature Art

    Contact Paper Stained Glass

    1. Cut out different colored shapes from the cello paper.
    2. Remove the backing from the contact paper, carefully setting the sheet down sticky-side up. 
    3. Press the cello paper down onto the sticky contact paper. 
    4. Display your artwork in a window, letting the light shine through. 

    Contact Paper Stained Glass

    Contact Paper Nature Art 

    1. Go outside, gathering up small leaves, sticks, and flowers.
    2. Remove the backing from the contact paper, carefully setting the sheet down sticky-side up.
    3. Press the objects from nature down onto the sticky contact paper.
    4. Feel free to add any other materials from your own supplies.
    5. Display your artwork!

    Contact Paper Nature Art


    Grades K-2: Sidewalk Stained Glass

    Turn your sidewalk or driveway into a work of art, while having fun in the sun.

    1. Find a square of sidewalk or driveway, or make a large square or rectangle out of tape.
    2. Stretch and stick a piece of painter’s tape, any size, across the space in any direction. 
      Stick another line of painter’s tape in a different direction.
    3. Keep going to create different geometric shapes. 
    4. Once your square of sidewalk is broken up with a good number of lines, start coloring in the shapes with sidewalk chalk.
    5. Use one color for each space.
    6. Once all the visible pavement is colored over, pull off the painter’s tape.


    Grades 3-8: Sun Prints

    Use the power of the sun and objects from nature to create beautiful designs.

    1. Find some objects you’d like to print - leaves, flowers, rocks, or anything you’d like to use to make a print. 
    2. Once you are ready with your objects, remove the blue sun-printing paper from the manila envelope. 
    3. Place the paper in the sun, and then immediately place your chosen objects on the paper. 
    4. Allow to sit in the sun until the sun-printing paper turns very pale blue, about 2 minutes.
    5. Remove the objects from the paper, and quickly remove the paper from the light.
    6. Immediately soak the paper in a container of plain tap water for about 1 minute. 
    7. Dry flat.

    Youth Services Librarian Allison