Ideally I wish everybody would have a Cynthia as one of their co-op leaders, but since that is not possible, I want to share one idea that came of out of her creative little mind for our co-op. Besides being a great friend, she is so talented at coming up with ideas that keeps the fire for fun stoked in our co-ops.
It was her idea to have two 8 1/2 feet Egyptian columns and they came out so beautiful because of her hard work.
The strengths she brings to a co-op is an excellent example of what I talked about in my 5 Days of a Homeschooling Co-op. Prep the learning environment and the kids will have fun and learn at the same time.
Here is her supply list:
14 – 5 gal. buckets
- 2 rolls duct tape
- 6 sections of clean bendable cardboard large enough to wrap around buckets (each about 4 ft. wide x 3 ft. tall )
- paintable wallpaper samples cut into strips (optional)
- chalk pastels
- Elmer’s glue
- spray can of matte finish for protecting chalk pastels
- large heavy rocks that will fit in 2-5 gal. buckets
- 2 pieces of wood cut to serve as caps for tops of pillars
- 2 hooks for banner
- tape measure, ladder or chair
And here is her explanation of how to make them.
1. Find a picture of Egyptian pillars to use as a guide for colors and patterns.
2. Decide how tall you want the pillars. We used 7 buckets stacked on top of one another which made each pillar about 8 1/2 ft tall. You can adjust the height by using more or fewer buckets.
3. Remove the metal handles from all of the buckets.
4. Fill the bottom bucket with heavy rocks. This will give the pillar stability.
5. After the bottom bucket is full of rocks place another bucket with the open end on top of the open end of the bucket with the rocks in it. Use duct tape to secure the two buckets together tightly right around the outside of the buckets where the open ends are placed together. Be generous with the duct tape and go all the way around the buckets perhaps even a couple of times for strength and stability.
6. Place a third bucket on top of the first two so that the bottom ends are against one another. Use duct tape to secure them together tightly where the two bottom ends meet. Don’t forget to go all the way around the buckets with the duct tape once again.
7. Continue placing and taping the buckets together in the same manner as the first and second buckets alternating (open end to open end, bottom end to bottom end) as you go up until you have reached the height you desire.
8. Decorate each section of cardboard. There are many ways this can be done, but we used chalk pastels which we sprayed with matte finish for the bottom two sections and paintable wallpaper sample strips for the top section. After the wallpaper sample strips dry, glue them to the top cardboard section. Or instead of wallpaper sample strips you can easily continue decorating the top section with pastels or paint.
9. Once everything on the cardboard is dry attach the bottom section to the pillar. We taped ours together at the back with duct tape as well as double-sided duct tape between the cardboard and bucket to give it extra strength. Be generous with the duct tape so the pillars don’t come apart.
10. Place the next section of cardboard right above the one on bottom and duct tape it in the same manner as the first.
11. Attach the last section of cardboard with duct tape above the second one in the same way as the first two.
12. Now you are ready to cap the pillar. For a cap we used a board cut a little bigger than the top of the bucket. We also nailed another board a little smaller than the opening of the bucket to the bottom side of the board that serves as the cap. This anchored the cap inside the bucket so that it would not fall off.
13. To hang a banner or something else between the pillars install hooks into the middle of the edges of the caps.
In another post, I will share how Kelley made that beautiful banner.
I love the fact she used discarded wall paper books and buckets. Simply ask your local paint store if they have any supplies like that they are discarding.
Our study of the Great Empires won’t be easily forgettable because of her hard work. A little cardboard, imagination and diy creates lasting memories.
Thanks Cynthia for such an amazing job. I hope this inspires you with an idea or two to keep activities fun in your co-op or just through the summer.
Are you going to give it a try?
Hugs and love ya,