Wish Upon a Watercolor Star

The school year begins with hopes and dreams. I love to make dreams come true. So we create beautiful crafts to catch our dreams. Focus on them. Believe in them.

These watercolor stars were a three day project with our twenty kindergarten and first grade students. On day one, we painted stars. Day two, we strung beads. Day three, we wrote wishes. Along the way, we discussed ideas. What do we want? Play, discovery, friends. What fun, imagining our wonderful year!

Of course, you can wish anytime, for any reason. A wishing star would be a lovely party favor, or a baby mobile, or a rainy afternoon craft. Endless possibilities...

How do we make them?

  1. Cut a star with medium or heavyweight paper. We used watercolor paper. You can draw your own, or have your child draw a star, or use a free printable like this one on Spoonful.
  2. Children paint the star on both sides. We used watercolor paints, giving children yellow, red, and orange colors. You could use any paints you like, or markers, or colored pencils. Decorate your star.
  3. Thread a tapestry needle to a long piece of crochet thread. A tapestry needle has a blunt tip. It. Is perfect for children who say, "But I don't know how to sew!" Tie a bead to the ends of the thread so the other beads won't fall off.
  4. Have fun beading! Add beads and sequins to make a rainbow hanger for your star.
  5. Punch a hole into the star. Thread the needle through, tie off, and snip.
  6. Children write their name on one side, and their wish on the other side of the star. Hang your star in a special place. Enjoy your dream shining over you!

I encourage children to dream for emotions more than things. They may want money for our school (they know times are difficult) or toys or more books. I ask, "Why? How would you feel?" We want the emotion, not the stuff. Because maybe we can find fun and adventures another way.

At the same time, I change my ideas to catch a moment. I have a star-wish that my daughter made when she was three. Her wish?

I want to wish for a pony

That captured her. At three. Her sweetness. And that is my dream. To create projects with children that celebrate childhood. My dreams are coming true :) Enjoy!


August is a whole new year. Perhaps not on the calendar, but for many children, a year begins in August. I feel the energy gather as a teacher and a mom. New stories. Blank pages. New teachers and friends.

In my teaching program years ago, we learned about Self Fulfilling Prophecy. Two teachers were told two stories about their incoming classes. One heard she was getting a bright, kind, fabulous class. And the other heard he was getting a mischievous, difficult, unruly class. The classes, in reality, were randomly assigned. A few months later, the teachers were asked to describe their classes. Guess how they answered?

This is the Self Fulfilling Prophecy. Your beliefs shape your reality.

So I am thinking about intentions as we prepare the classroom for a new group of kindergarten and first grade students. All of our stories will weave together into one story. How can I, as a teacher, set them up for success? How can I make intentions meaningful?

I thought of a big gesture. I am sewing a little felt heart for each student. I will leave an opening at the top so we can slip their name inside and they can add wishes of their own. Friends, fun, learn, peace, joy. Paying attention to the good stuff.

I have them cut out. And I have a few days to seem them all together. For my own children, I will choose their favorite colors and put them in their lunchbox on the first day. Manifest love :)