Fun Activity For Toddlers, Special Needs Or Just Any Child!

As art teachers, we often talk about how the process and the manipulation of materials is the main goal.  The product is nice too, but it's the process that matters.  That is where the learning occurs. 

I'm really excited to have my own personal little art student in my house.  I just can't wait until she is old enough to do even more art making.  Here is a really fun activity that my 18 month old loves to do:  making sticker and tape pictures!   I peel off the stickers and she arranges them on the paper.  It is really great for her fine motor skills to try to manipulate the pieces to stick down.  It is fun to watch her attempting to get the stickers off her fingers.  I bought some colored tape to use as well, which makes interesting designs.  Older kids would love to play around with this as well and special needs children could enjoy manipulating the tape to create pictures also.  I have a friend who used to teach students with low cognitive/fine motor skills and she would tell me about how the aides would work hand-over-hand to do projects with them.  This might be an activity that could be done in a classroom with students of varying abilities.  I'm thinking with children older than 2-3 years, they could arrange the tape to make designs, add paint and other collage images and doodle around and on top of the tape.  I will try it out as an extended "free choice" activity for early finishers and show you later what they come up with.

One of my favorite art journalers, Kelly Kilmer, uses decorative tape frequently in her artwork.