Lydia has become really aware of how big she is and also how big she wants to be this school year. With the help of Pinterest and a Sharpie marker I made a "giant ruler" growth chart a while back and have enjoyed watching Lydia measure herself frequently.
I was trying to think of something to make as a gift for Lydia's teacher. I started thinking that if Lydia enjoyed measuring herself, a whole class of three to four year olds might really enjoy a classroom growth chart. Lydia's class has an elephant theme, so I started dreaming up ideas for an elephant themed growth chart.
I found an odd scrap of canvas and then found an elephant image online. I cropped and resized the picture in Word so that the elephant was exactly six inches tall. My idea was elephants stacked on top of each other so that 2 elephants equaled a foot.
Using my printout, I did a simple transfer by rubbing pencil lead on the back.
Then I could just trace the picture pressing really hard to transfer the design. I just traced the outside edge of the elephant shape because I was painting the whole thing grey anyway.
I would trace an elephant and then paint an elephant until I filled the length of the canvas.
Next I traced the details and went over them with a paint pen.
Because the chart had unfinished canvas edges, I wanted to make a sign to finish off the top and create a focal point. I found a wood plaque at Walmart and an image of an elephant balancing on a ball.
Just like on the growth chart, I painted in the shape of the elephant and then used a paint pen to add the details.
I planned out a message about the students in this teacher's class growing "in mind, body, and spirit." I used the same technique to transfer the images and words to the plaque.
I decided that I really didn't like the unfinished canvas edge down the length of the growth chart. I got the idea to attach a fabric measuring tape to add a fun detail while hiding the raw edge. I didn't want to guess about a glue that would stick so I decided to sew the measuring tape to the canvas.
I went ahead and brightened up the the colors on the elephants so that they matched with the bright yellow of the measuring tape. I also added larger measurements (in eleph-eet) so the kids can see if they are 3 elepheet or 4 elepheet.
Here is the finished plaque attached to the growth chart and below you can see the whole thing. I hope it finds a happy home with lots of little "elephants" to check how big they are.