April 13, 2010

Shoo fly! Blow paint.

Old Black Fly by Jim Aylesworth

That old black fly's been buzzing around! I ran across this book at the library and am in love. Old black fly buzzes around the house, causing chaos from A to Z. He "ate on the crust of the Apple pie. He bothered the Baby and made her cry." Through every letter in the alphabet, this pesky fly leaves calamity in it's wake... until it gets a much deserved SWAT!

The story is fun, the rhymes are infectious, but the illustrations are incredible. With splashes and spackles of paint, illustrator Stephen Gammell captures the constant movement of the fly on each page. Look at these gorgeous pages... and just pretend those ugly toes are not in the picture. Wow, I need a pedicure.

I love this page - just look what that nasty fly did with the eggs and frosting. Almost as gross as my toes. Really, I'm so sorry. I promise I'll find a new way to prop books open.

The style of the paintings reminded me of blow painting, so I thought we would try it. I mixed a small amount of paint with water right in the cap. Doing one color at a time, I let some paint drip on the paper and E spread it onto the page by blowing through a straw.

Once we'd filled up most of the page, E added a black fingerprint fly. This is one fly that won't go splat!

If you try blow painting with your kids, make sure the paint is really watery. (Family Fun recommended using colorful india inks, but we haven't yet graduated to that level of craft supplies.) You'll also want to use a large/wide straw for greater spread. Happy painting!

I'm linking up with:
- ABC and 124's Show and Tell


  1. Very neat - and very brave - I can imagine all sorts of blow paint disasters, involving walls, curtains, floors...sisters :)

  2. Looks like a great project!

    Oh how my boys would enjoy the blow paint! What a great mom you are!

  3. Ha! The toe prop made me laugh out loud! I love how the artwork turned out! I wonder if I could get juliet to do this without ingesting too much paint?

  4. Those are gorgeous illustrations, I haven't heard of this title before. And you are brave to do painting with a straw! That looks fun but messy. I've done splatter painting with a toothbrush rubbed onto an inverted colander (sorry if that's mispelled my spelling is quite terrible). That was a big mess, especially with 20 5 year olds. I think this might be slightly easier. I wonder if ER could figure out how to do this. Looks like fun.

  5. Love this craft and love your blog. I host Tot Tuesdays every week and would love it if you would stop by and link up. I’m also hosting a giveaway at the moment you might be interested in. Have a great week!


  6. Music link:
    When you read the book get the children to pat a rhythm on their leg (or use 2 sticks)with the chorus while you read a second time. Tap on cap letters hands move slower than language (does this make sense?)

    Old black Fly's been Buzzin' Around, Buzzin' Around, Buzzin' Around. Old black Fly's been Buzzin' Around, and he's Had a Very busy Day.


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