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October 6, 2015

​16 Quick Arts and Crafts Tips for Teachers

By Allie Magnuson
Grades PreK–K, 1–2

    Have you ever struggled with broken crayons, empty paint, messy glue, or dull scissors? Ever wished arts and crafts time was just a little easier? If so, these 16 arts and crafts tips, tricks, hacks, and hints are for you.  

     

    Paint Tips

    1. Use bottles of liquid watercolor paint to refill individual colors in paint sets. Leave the sets out to dry overnight.

     

    2. As an alternative to paint, color some circles on a piece of paper with washable Crayola markers. The paper can then be used just like a regular watercolor set.

     

    3. Make background painting easier and faster for students by having them use paint rollers. 

     

    4. Cut a tri-fold board with an X-Acto knife to make tabletop easels. Hot glue clothespins for the clips. 

     

     

    Glue Tips

    5. Instead of shaking glitter on to white glue (which can show through), shake it on to glitter glue in a matching color.

     

    6. To handle something with wet glue, use tweezers. You won't get your hands sticky.

     

    7. Store glue bottles upside down. The glue will always be at the nozzle.

     

    8. Hand out glue sticks with the caps removed. When the project is over, you can replace the caps yourself. No more dried-out glue sticks or sticky caps!

     

    Scissors Tips

    9. When your little learners start using scissors, draw a smiley face on their thumbs so they remember that their thumbs must face upward.

     

    10. Give each student two containers: one for working pieces, and one for scraps. If they accidentally put a piece in with the scraps, they can easily look for it.

     

    11. If your students have to cut out more than one of the same piece, staple all their papers together at the corners. They'll only have to cut once, the papers won't move, and all the pieces will have the same shape.

     

    12. Sharpen scissors by cutting a piece of sandpaper with them.

     

    Crayon Tips

    13. Substitute the crayons and colored pencils in your art center with ones that twist. They won't break!

     

    14. Make old crayons seem new again by sharpening them with a crayon sharpener. 

     

    15. Extend the life of small or broken crayons by securing broken pieces or two small pieces of the same color with masking tape. 

     

    16. Put a box of crayons in your time-out or break area. Using a roll-on bottle, apply a calming essential oil (such as lavender or peppermint) to each crayon. Students can color and have some aromatherapy at the same time! 

     

    Do you have any arts and crafts tips to add? Share them with me (and your fellow teachers!) in the comments! 

     

    Stay tuned for my next post, "Classroom Alternatives for Halloween" and if you haven't already, follow me on Pinterest and Twitter.

    You might also be interested in:

    "Tips, Tricks, and Techniques for Teachers"

    "Classroom Organization Tips for the Frugal Teacher, Part 1"

    "Classroom Organization Tips for the Frugal Teacher, Part 2"

    Have you ever struggled with broken crayons, empty paint, messy glue, or dull scissors? Ever wished arts and crafts time was just a little easier? If so, these 16 arts and crafts tips, tricks, hacks, and hints are for you.  

     

    Paint Tips

    1. Use bottles of liquid watercolor paint to refill individual colors in paint sets. Leave the sets out to dry overnight.

     

    2. As an alternative to paint, color some circles on a piece of paper with washable Crayola markers. The paper can then be used just like a regular watercolor set.

     

    3. Make background painting easier and faster for students by having them use paint rollers. 

     

    4. Cut a tri-fold board with an X-Acto knife to make tabletop easels. Hot glue clothespins for the clips. 

     

     

    Glue Tips

    5. Instead of shaking glitter on to white glue (which can show through), shake it on to glitter glue in a matching color.

     

    6. To handle something with wet glue, use tweezers. You won't get your hands sticky.

     

    7. Store glue bottles upside down. The glue will always be at the nozzle.

     

    8. Hand out glue sticks with the caps removed. When the project is over, you can replace the caps yourself. No more dried-out glue sticks or sticky caps!

     

    Scissors Tips

    9. When your little learners start using scissors, draw a smiley face on their thumbs so they remember that their thumbs must face upward.

     

    10. Give each student two containers: one for working pieces, and one for scraps. If they accidentally put a piece in with the scraps, they can easily look for it.

     

    11. If your students have to cut out more than one of the same piece, staple all their papers together at the corners. They'll only have to cut once, the papers won't move, and all the pieces will have the same shape.

     

    12. Sharpen scissors by cutting a piece of sandpaper with them.

     

    Crayon Tips

    13. Substitute the crayons and colored pencils in your art center with ones that twist. They won't break!

     

    14. Make old crayons seem new again by sharpening them with a crayon sharpener. 

     

    15. Extend the life of small or broken crayons by securing broken pieces or two small pieces of the same color with masking tape. 

     

    16. Put a box of crayons in your time-out or break area. Using a roll-on bottle, apply a calming essential oil (such as lavender or peppermint) to each crayon. Students can color and have some aromatherapy at the same time! 

     

    Do you have any arts and crafts tips to add? Share them with me (and your fellow teachers!) in the comments! 

     

    Stay tuned for my next post, "Classroom Alternatives for Halloween" and if you haven't already, follow me on Pinterest and Twitter.

    You might also be interested in:

    "Tips, Tricks, and Techniques for Teachers"

    "Classroom Organization Tips for the Frugal Teacher, Part 1"

    "Classroom Organization Tips for the Frugal Teacher, Part 2"

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