Why Art for Young Children?
Art experiences for young children should allow them to freely explore materials and activities. Children will become creative if provided a variety of sensory experiences and materials and if allowed to follow their own lead, not an adult's.
Here are some art activities and recipes for you to explore with your child.
Playdough (for ages 24 months and up)
Combine ingredients. Stir over low heat for 5 - 10 minutes until mixture forms a soft ball. Put mixture onto wax paper until cool. Knead slightly to eliminate and grainy texture. Store in a tightly covered container. The recipe can be doubled.
Your child will learn by imitating you, and your child will also learn to be a leader when you imitate him.
For very young children, poke playdough with your fingers pinch off pieces and put it into cups, bowls or even a dump truck. Push small objects such as plastic straws, craft sticks, and cookie cutters into the playdough to make imprints.
Stretchy Putty (for ages 2 years and up)
Pour glue in bowl. Gradually add starch and color. Let stand for 5 minutes. Mix with hands until smooth and rubbery. If it is gooey, add more starch. If it is hard, add more glue. Store in airtight container in the refrigerator. Dads LOVE this stuff!!
Clean Mud (for ages over 1 year)
Tear up 1 roll of white toilet paper into small bits (the smaller the better). Using a cheese grater, grate a bar of Dove bath soap into a big bowl. Add the torn up toilet paper to the bowl. Then add warm water a little bit at a time while mixing paper and soap together. You have added enough water when the mixture begins to feel like thick Cool Whip. Do not make the mixture too soupy. The more you squish it the fluffier it becomes. Note: Parents and children had a blast with this at our Parents as Teachers Messy Night.
Colored Pasta for stringing (for ages 3 years and up)
Pour alcohol and food coloring in a ziplock freezerbag. Zip it and shake around to mix. Open it and put in pasta. Make sure the bag is zipped.Turn the bag over and over on the table to evenly coat the pasta. Leave it on the table for about an hour. Turn it over after 30 minutes to evenly coat it. Pour it out onto the paper bag. Let it dry overnight.
Wet Paper & Markers
Brush an entire sheet of paper with water. While paper is still wet, draw with markers and watch the colors run. Or draw with marker, then spray water from plant mister or squirt bottle. *Be sure to use watercolor markers, NOT permanent*