Friday, 4 January 2013

Creating a piece of artwork with your Christmas rubbish!

How using sweet wrappers and magazine cuttings can keep a toddler entertained!
Every year after Christmas, I started collecting all the sweet wrappers from the tins of chocolates I had received as gifts! The intention was to add something different to the art and craft area in the Nursery or Pre school, and add something new to the children's artwork!

The great thing about sweet wrappers are that they are colourful, sometimes shiny and great fun to rustle in your hands! Toddlers especially love the sound of the wrappers in their hands as they place them onto paper to create a collage! You can roll them up into balls to or stick them flat on the paper. Something I had to try out with my little one when my Nursery Nurse friend came to visit with a bag full of sweet wrappers ( I had taught her well!!)

My daughter loved sticking them onto paper, and wanted to pile them on top of one another too, creating layers of sweet wrappers which was actually quite effective, giving a real 3D effect! It has real pride of place on our wall with her other works of art!!

Another fantastic idea along similar lines is to cut out pictures from magazines which come through the door or that you have finished reading. You can cut out celebrity faces, pictures of food, pictures of children, families and a wide range of other pictures. Again, the child has a chance to explore the pictures, placing the ones they like onto the paper to create collages. I often found that older children (aged 3-4) like to create a picture which reflected their families, or created a story from the pictures they used. It can offer a wide range of learning experiences, building language development as well as creative development.

My daughter is not quite at the stage of creating scenarios, but she did mention that one of the pictures was "a lady like Mummy", which shows that she was thinking about her selections as she chose the pictures she wanted to use. It is really worth a go, and a great way to make something different out of the old magazines you have laying around the house. Children who can draw bodies could even cut out a persons head from a picture and draw what they imaging the body could look like..........another great way to keep the creative mind ticking!!

As with any piece of art you child makes, it is all about the language which surrounds it. It is always beneficial to ask the child about what they have made and why they chose certain pieces to create their picture. Not only does it boost their vocabulary, but it also really boosts the self esteem, as you show an interest in something they have created and spent time on.

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