Recently my daughter has been very scared at night. Someone at school told her a scary story and she just can’t get the idea out of her head. The same week Ancient Faith also released their book called, “Sasha and the Dragon.” It is about a little boy who is scared of a lot of things. He has an icon in his room of St. Michael. He prays and a miracle happens that helps him through his difficult time. I’m going to keep the description brief because I don’t want to spoil the ending for you. 🙂 It’s really beautiful! And Nicholas Malara is an amazing illustrator! He captures scenes from different perspectives and uses light to communicate the mood of the story. It’s really awesome!
We read this book together and I just so happened to have an icon of Archangel Michael that I gave her to have next to her bed. Being a former teacher, I always want to know an age range of books. I’d say this is for 1st grade & up. You can take a look at some sample pages to see the length of text as well view some of the illustrations. http://store.ancientfaith.com/sasha-and-the-dragon/.
We discussed other things that my daughter could do to help her ease her fears. She could pray the Jesus Prayer. She could try to distract her mind by thinking of things that make her happy. I also told her about when I was scared and how I dealt with it, so she knew that everyone gets scared and that she can overcome this fear.
We talked about the verse from Isaiah 41:10, “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you. Yes, I will help you. I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” I love that quote! We discussed what these words meant and I had her memorize this part: “Fear not for I am with you.” God is always there for us in everything that we do. He will protect us from danger and our nighttime fears.
After reading the book, we did a fun craft. I wanted my daughter to be able to focus on something at night. I remembered how I had a glow in the dark cross bedtime prayer reminder. All night long I could see the cross which helped me remember God was with me.
- First, we did some watercolor painting on watercolor paper to make a background.
Optional Part 1: Before painting, you can draw with crayons. When you paint over the wax, the watercolor will not stick to the crayons. It is fun if you use very different colors of paint vs. crayon. Like draw a blue flower and use orange paint over it. I love how colors pop!
Here is an example:
Optional Part 2: While still wet we sprinkled salt on it because it absorbs some of the paint and makes snowflake type shapes. While I liked the effect of the salt on the watercolor, it did make it hard to put the tape on because it was all ridged. I brushed off as much salt as I could with my hand. So you’ll have to decide if you like it.
- When it was dry, I used glow in the dark duct tape to make two strips of equal width. Most craft stores have this. Or you may be able to find glow in the dark Washi tape. I like duct tape because if you start to rip it long ways, it will follow the threads and make a perfect cut.
- We also took a yellow feather and glued it on the picture to remind us of the golden feather in the book. I’m not going to give away why there’s a feather in the story. 🙂 You’ll have to read it to find out. I tried to put some glow in the dark paint over the feather, but it got kinda clumped together, so I just put a plain yellow one on it, since the feather was golden.
- If you are planning on doing this activity with your Church School class, you can skip the paint and have them color the background with crayons or washable markers. Or provide many old t-shirts so they won’t ruin their beautiful church clothes. Baby wipes are an easy way to clean up messy hands.
I hope that you enjoy the craft! If you create it, please post pictures on my Facebook page, so I can see them. 🙂 I love seeing kid’s artwork!