- Colored construction paper
- Glue sticks
- One large sheet of construction paper
- Fine motor
- Creative thinking
Tape a large sheet of construction paper onto an easel or wall— Explain to children that you will pass around some construction paper and everyone will be invited to tear up a piece. Inform children that they can tear their paper into very small pieces or big pieces—whatever they choose! Show them how to tear the paper and assist those who may need help.
Invite children to glue their torn paper onto the large sheet of construction paper.— When finished, engage children in a discussion about the torn-paper collage. Discuss how some may have layered paper; ask them to notice designs or shapes that were created or to find images that may be recognizable to them.
Next, invite children to create their own torn-paper collages— Suggest they choose a sheet of construction paper for their base, and one or two colors for tearing. Older children may be able to work with several colors of construction paper.
Display all of the collages so that children can observe their work— Encourage them to talk about the similarities and differences they observe.
Keep materials in a basket or tray in the art area so children can continue to experiment with torn-paper collages.
Encourage collaborative work by inviting children to work in pairs or groups of four to make torn-paper collages together. Older children can create faces, animals, or other images using torn paper.
Remember: When tearing paper, most young children will become engrossed in the process of the activity and may not create an “end product” that is recognizable to you.
Recycled art. Ask parents to collect a variety of materials such as egg cartons, plastic cookie cutters, thread spools, or small food containers to make a recycled art sculpture. Suggest they provide their children with masking tape or glue and assist them in making a sculpture or collage with the materials.
CURRICULUM CONNECTION: MATH
String geometry— Invite children to sit in a circle. Take a ball of string and unwind it so that each child has a portion to hold onto. Cut the string from the ball and tie the two ends together to make a large circle. Work with children to create different shapes with the string such as triangles, squares, rectangles, pentagons, or octagons.
Baby Einstein: The ABCs of Art by Julie Aigner-Clark (Hyperion, 2002; $15.99)
I'm a Caterpillar by Jean Marzollo (Scholastic, 1997; $3.99)
My Shapes/Mis Formas by Rebecca Emberley (Little, Brown, 2000; $5.99)