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How to Draw - Christmas - Fiona Watt

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1 Review

Genre: Junior Books / Author: Fiona Watt / Paperback / 34 Pages / Book is published 2005-10-28 by Usborne Publishing Ltd

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      29.12.2009 10:51
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      Not the best of the Usborne activity books.

      Having been delighted with a couple of other Usborne Activities books relating to things to 'make and do' I was expecting to be just as pleased with some of the 'How to Draw' Usborne Activity books that I bought for the festive period.

      - The book -
      At the beginning of the book as you would expect there is a Contents page which is very easy to use.

      As with the majority of books in this series, there are 17 things to make, which I have listed below:
      ~ Busy elves
      ~ Printed reindeer
      ~ Starry sky
      ~ Twinkly Christmas tree
      ~ Jolly Santas
      ~ Snowy skaters
      ~ Three Wise Men
      ~ Christmas stockings
      ~ Icy snowman
      ~ Snowy hill
      ~ Angels with sparkly wings
      ~ Fun in the snow
      ~ Festive trees
      ~ Ice queen
      ~ Sparkling decorations
      ~ Trees in winter
      ~ Snowflake patterns

      In the centre of the book there is a double page spread of shiny gold topic related stickers (250 stickers) that can are easily peeled off and either used on the 'makes' for the things in this book or just generally stuck on anywhere and quite honestly anything!

      Most of the craft activities take up a double page spread. There are drawings of the finished item which in my experience looks a whole lot neater than the ones a 5-7 year old can make but it gives a great idea to the child and more importantly the not-so arty adult, as to what it should look like!
      Each activity is very simply explained in step-by-step, numbered sections with an accompanying drawing of most of the stages, which I found to be really useful for both of us.

      - Resources that you will need -

      Anyone with children in the house will already have many of the resources needed to make the items and if you don't the items listed don't cost too much money:
      ~ water colour paints and paintbrushes
      ~ felt tip pens
      ~ pencils
      ~ chalk
      ~ different coloured paper
      ~ scissors
      ~ glitter
      ~ gold pen
      ~ glue

      - Our thoughts on the book and activities -

      Unlike some of the other Usborne art and craft books that we've used, this doesn't need a great deal of adult input.

      I have been a fan of Usborne activity books for many years as they often offer new and exciting art and craft activities for the not so arty adults like me. However I felt that the drawings were often too intricate and detailed for the under 7 age group. The step by step guide of what to draw and how to draw it is helpful but the drawings although initially look quite child-like and simple aren't that easy for young children to copy from (unless they are particularly artistically gifted!) and are quite obviously done by adults.
      Although pleased with her efforts my niece sometimes became a little frustrated when she said that hers didn't look as good as the ones in the book. Obviously praise was given etc but I'm not overly keen on young children being disappointed in their own artwork when the activity should in fact be fun!
      Saying that, she 'had a go' at creating some of the simpler activities such as the stockings, snowman etc. I'm still practicing drawing the Ice Queen!

      - Price -
      The paperback version that I bought, ISBN: 978074606974-5 costs £4.99. However it's cheaper on amazon.

      - Usborne Activities Books -
      Usborne have a huge range of activity books available. They have a wide range of 'make and do' activity books but not as many 'How to Draw' books, the titles of which I have listed below:

      How to draw......
      ~ Princesses and Mermaids
      ~ Animals
      ~ Trucks and Tractors
      ~ Dinosaurs
      - Final Thoughts -
      Most Usborne Activities books are a great buy for any adult who is looking for inspiration in fun arts and crafts activities.
      I was a little disappointed with this one in comparison to others I've used and really should be aimed at 8+ year olds, given the level of difficulty of the drawings!
      Thankfully, I bought this as a set from a Book Club so didn't pay the full price for it.

      N.B. Review also posted on ciao.

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