Glue + Yarn
This simple invitation to create was inspired by a trip to a Hot Air Balloon festival. After festivals and parades, colors are often the first thing that come to my mind and the minds of my toddlers when we are recollecting our experience. The bright blue balloon. The people with the red hats. When we looked back over our Hudson Hot Air Affair pictures, the colors of the balloons were a hot topic. Searching around the house, I found some neon yarn that reminded me of the colorful balloons and this activity was born.
Glue is a messy, thrilling experience for most little ones. A few tips:
*Start with a simple glue exploration if your toddler hasn't played with glue before. Give them some paper and glue and let them explore.
*With all glue projects with young kids, allow them to play with it, stick and unstick things, smear it on their hands and paper. Eventually, the neat gluing that we do as adults will emerge, but first toddlers need to make a creative mess. Let them.
*Once children are comfortable with glue - try adding things, such as this yarn to their exploration.
*Remember that it is about the process. Gluing is a skill. Don't worry about what the picture looks like, instead comment on the process, help when they are frustrated, give them space and time to explore.
I set the activity up exactly as pictured during nap time for them to discover in the afternoon. I have found that my toddlers do better with a cup of glue and a paint brush. They do some brushing of the paint and some dipping of things into the cup. Glue bottles are not as interesting to them. This is not true of all toddlers though - so experiment with what works for you and yours.
This is a free exploration, process oriented invitation to create. I insist that art materials stay at the art table, but otherwise they generally have free reign. They painted with glue, dipped string in the glue, moved string around their paper. Some string stuck. Some did not. Your job is not to worry about the end product, but to sit with them or nearby. To support them if they have trouble. To comment and ask questions. To mostly just observe.
Wisking children to a sink is my go-to plan with messy fingers. We are lucky in that our art area is adjacent to a bathroom. If yours is not, a wash cloth or some wipes will do the trick. Then the placemat with their artistic creations can be likewise wisked out of reach of curious fingers until everything dries.
Placemat or Table Covering
Bottle or Cup of Glue with Brush
Bowl or Basket with Colorful Yarn
Black Construction Paper
* What other colorful materials can you glue? Squares of construction paper? Buttons? Pieces of Felt?
* Older children could use glue, yarn and other materials to make their own balloon design.
* 30+ More Collage ideas for young children.
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