art,  natural materials

Nature Art

I use natural materials in my classroom all the time – right now I have nature sorting in my math center, flower seeds and magnifying glasses in my science center, and twigs and tree circles in my block area.  My students help me collect these materials, sometimes we go on walks around the neighborhood and fill up a bag, and sometimes they bring fun stuff from their yards.

One of my favorite activities to do with wonderful bits of nature is to create a glue-free collage.  This project is so simple, but encourages so many different responses from the children.  The children are presented with the available materials and asked to create a picture in a framed space.  They don’t actually glue their materials to any paper, so they are free to move and re-position the objects as they please.

I used mat boards to frame the space, but you could use large picture frames, or for smaller work, scrapbooking borders.  My students love to let their imaginations run wild with this activity, and they will revisit it throughout the day.  The beauty of the open-endedness is that they can create whatever they please in the given space, and we all know that preschoolers love their freedom!

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