Make a scarecrow: an activity for children of all ages. Scarecrows may not actually scare the crows or rabbits away but they sure do add a bit of ambiance and fun to your garden.Decorating your garden with a scarecrow adds a bit of your own personality and flair to a space.
- old wood – 2 pieces measuring approximately 4ft by 5ft (old fence pieces work great and are often free) and screws
- burlap sack, fabric, or pillowcase
- pumpkin, old ball or something to stuff the fabric with to make a head
- button-down shirt and pants
- straw, rags, leaves, pine needles or other stuffing materials (a trash bag to hold the materials is optional)
- safety pins
- twine or other string
- buttons and embroidery thread (or markers or paint) to make your face
- glue sticks and glue gun
- hats, shoes, gloves, bandannas, pitchfork or rake and other accessories
- garden notebook/journal
- paper (if using a binder) – copy paper, cardstock and/or 140 lb weight paper if using watercolors
- pencil and eraser
- art medium of choice (colored pencils, watercolors, crayons, or markers)
- page protectors
- Read one or more of the following books about scarecrows with your kids:
- Scarecrow by Cynthia Rylant -highly recommended for children ages 4-8. (R)
- The Lonely Scarecrow by Tim Preston – highly recommended for children ages 4-8. (R)
- Scarecrow Pete by Marc Kimball Moulton – a cute story recommended for children ages 4-8. (R)
- The Scarecrow’s Hat by Ken Brown – recommended for children ages 4-8. (R)
- The Scarecrow’s Dance by Jane Yolen – recommended for children ages 4-8. (R)
- Otis and the Scarecrow by Loren Long – recommended for children ages 4-8. (R)
- Go shopping for an outfit at yard sales, thrift stores, and/or the Dollar store.
- Build a cross out of wood by screwing two pieces of wood together measuring approximately 4ft by 5ft (we cut the size to fit the shirt and pants and allowing a little room at the bottom to stake the scarecrow into the ground).
- Dress the cross in the shirt and overalls. We ended up putting the bottom part of the cross into one of the legs, but you can also cut a hole in the crotch and have it come through the middle.
- Stuff the clothes with an old hay-bale, pine needles, or other soft substance placed inside a trash bag. You can also tie the ends of the wrists and ankles with twine so the stuffing doesn’t come out.
- Make a head out of a pumpkin, burlap, or an old ball.
- Make a face with a marker or use a hot glue gun to attach buttons for eyes and embroidery thread for a smile.
- Secure his head to the wooden cross. You can cut a hole in the bottom of the pumpkin and push it through the top of the cross. If you are using a ball and fabric you can use a staple gun.
- Secure his hat to his head using hot glue or safety pins.
- Put extra straw coming out of his hands and feet.
- Add any accessories such as a bandanna or pitchfork.
- Give him/her a name.
- Take a picture or draw a picture of your scarecrow and add it to your garden notebook/journal.
- Take pictures and tag #theabundantgarden on Instagram to share your fun and for an opportunity to be featured @theabundantgarden.
Did you ever see a scarecrow
Standing, ragged and forlorn,
Guarding crops that soon are coming
Through the earth, as though just born?
~Gertrude Tooley Buckingham, “The Scarecrow” (1940s)
And there you have it. Meet our scarecrow, Mr. McGregor.