sense of touch

Teaching Art To Your Child: Texture

Art Play and Fun with Texture

Yes, teaching art to your child is quite possible and you do not have to be an artist or have studied art in college, plus you can do it easily at home. For teaching art to your child and playing with texture you don’t need fancy materials or an expensive program although the amount of glue that kids go through can add up, along with scotch tape. You can find what you need in the kitchen, the scrap box, or the recycling.

teaching art to kids textureChildren like to explore and discover. We can often encourage this simply by setting materials out on a table or counter top and letting kids play with them. We may make comments about how something feels using words to describe the texture such as rough, slippery, fuzzy, smooth, bumpy, soft, hard, sticky, squishy, and so on. Asking questions like “I wonder how this would look on a paper?” or “Does this look like a _____ ?” can spark children’s imaginations and they will start to create.

teaching art to kids textureThe picture of the girl in a skirt was done by a four-year old who needed help cutting the fabric pieces because kid-scissors weren’t strong enough. She gave me specific instructions about where to cut but the choosing of fabric scraps, arranging and gluing was all done by her.

teaching art to kids textureThe next two were made by twins,  a boy and a girl also 4-years old. Bread tags and pieces of colored straws were arranged on top of a drawing of a house to make it 3-d. A bottle cap, straws, and plastic circles show a person at the playground. Kids will use anything so throwing stuff out almost has to be done in secret.

teaching art to kids textureA super crafty mom, Dot who has the amazing site shared this card made by her daughter for her birthday. I think Dot has either a magic formula or secret spell to make buttons stick. She does have an amazing collection of buttons. While you may not have an art gene, we all have a play one.

teaching art to kids textureAlthough we might think we are teaching art to kids, it’s probably more accurate to say children teach themselves when we provide them with time, space, and materials. We can give kids opportunities, like the ones in this photo, to experience textures for themselves and to stimulate their sense of touch. Can you think of some ways for your child to explore and create with texture?

March into Fun with Books, Stories, and Activities #11

The Princess and the Pea Play-of-the-Day

Sensory stimulation and play activities are vital for young children. The story of The Princess and the Pea inspires a play-of-the-day for the sense of touch.

Princess and the Pea Rachel IsadoraWhen a stranded princess arrives at a castle, the prince and his mother who own it welcome her. The queen wants to make sure she is a princess so give her a bed piled high with twenty mattresses. Underneath the mattresses and covers is one solitary pea. The girl has a terrible sleep and rises in the morning black and blue from the pea hidden in her bed, her sensitivity proving she is indeed a princess. In Rachel Isadora’s book, the pea ends up in a museum.

While sensitivity can vary greatly, we all feel with our skin. After reading this story, kids may want to explore their sense of touch. They can first lie down on the floor and test out how that feels. Then, they can put a few items down and check how they feel. Can they feel a piece of paper? How about a book, a slipper, a blanket, a stuffie, or a sock? Kids will have their own suggestions. Maybe they could try a pillow and have a nap?

A fun game to play for the sense of touch needs a box with a hole just big enough for a hand. Collect a few different things to feel like a spoon, spool of thread, small block, key, fuzzy pompom, bit of sponge, popsicle stick, eraser, etc. All of these items can go in the box. Kids put in a hand and feel an object, trying to guess what it is before pulling it out. When they do, it’s fun to check if they figured it out by touching and not seeing. A big sock can also be used for this touchy-feely game as long as the items fit.

One of the best things to feel is a hug. Can your child’s play-of-the-day include some fun for the sense of touch?

Fall Sensory Play #4 – Sense of Touch

Exploring the sense of touch is fun for kids and influences their physical, mental, and emotional health. Our sense of touch develops before all other senses and is amazingly sensitive. The skin over our entire bodies will react to touch so It is a primary channel for receiving information about the world. We did 3 fall activities for sense of touch.

fall sense of touch walkFirst, we went outside to take a touch and feel walk. We talked beforehand about being careful with touching, especially because kids really want to touch everything. Some safe things were: bark, pine cones, rocks, trees, apples, sticks, and the grass. Blackberry bushes were definitely not safe for touching. They were look only.

fall sense of touch walkBig Sister noticed a cocoon that she wanted to touch, but it was on the side of a small cactus in a pot on the front sidewalk, so it was another look only. We talked about how some things were rough and others were smooth, some were dry and some were wet. Some of the rocks in the sun were almost warm. We could tell by looking if something would feel rough or smooth, but not cold or hot.

We brought some items home and put them on a tray. Then, we covered them with a dish towel. The kids put their hands underneath, felt something, and then guessed what it was, just by the feel. They really enjoyed both the feeling and the guessing and this was a simple play activity.

The most fun for sense of touch in the fall was definitely the piles of leaves. Their hands touched the leaves, threw them, and tried to catch them as they swirled back down. Their bodies got to jump in the leaves and roll around. Then we all got to touch the rake and rake the leaves back into piles.

Can you suggest anything else for exploring the sense of touch in the fall?