There’s no doubt that open-ended children’s activities, those without a finished product in mind, are some of the very best kinds. Today I set out a very simple ‘invitation’ in Grae’s room… A piece of card stock, tissue paper squares in a variety of colours, and a glue stick. No instruction, no example, just materials available for her exploration. I wasn’t sure what she’d do with them. Scrunch the paper into balls and adhere it to the paper? Run the glue stick up and down her arms and cover them in tissue as she does with stickers? Make it ‘rain’ tissue paper all over her bedroom? There were many possibilities (some of which this mama like better than others).
So what happened? Upon laying eyes on the station, she gave a little ‘ooh’ and a nod with her head, and quickly plunkered down on her belly. She was immediately drawn to the glue stick and asked if it was “pretty pretty” (chapstick) and motioned putting it on her lips (although we’ve used white glue and craft glue before, a glue stick was a first). I explained that it was glue, to which she removed the lid and started smearing it on her paper. She then carefully started adding tissue paper squares, making sure they laid flat on the page and were spread out.
The end result was a tissue paper collage of sorts, a whole lot of great fine motor practice, and a lovely little conversation about colours and squares (“Circles? Circles, no. Squares, yaaaaa.”)
Not to mention, another beautiful piece of art to add to her scrapbook. ☺