Our kids love to test and observe different materials and compare them. The girls have taken to spinning wool with a drop-spindle and then, using the spun wool thread, they create a fabric with either knitting, crochet, or weaving. JudyLucy's recent analysis is that weaving is by far the fastest and most efficient way to create a fabric, but the weaver is confined to the size of the loom. Nevertheless, she prefers crochet or knitting when making a small piece of clothing like a hat or scarf because the fabric is nicer and more easily shaped.

Another set of materials they have used and compared are building materials. Led by David, the kids have built “forts” out of stacked cordwood, adobe mud, bricks, or ice chunks. The most efficient material for building an airtight dwelling quickly, according to David, is wood and adobe used together.

Other materials to explore are metal art: tin, copper, aluminum; wood carving of various types of wood; sewing with various types of fabrics; leather working; and art media types like pencil, pen, charcoal, paint, chalk, and crayon.