Have you just returned from a family day out at the beach? If your children had fun, they’ll still want to talk about what they saw and learned about there: seashells, crabs, seagulls, sunscreen, beach balls, beach umbrellas, and so on! Besides looking at photographs you took during your trip to the beach, there are many creative arts and crafts ideas you can do with your children afterwards to make the family day more memorable. A beach collage made from dried pasta is a good example. Here’s what you need:
- Shell-shaped pasta (conchiglie)
- Spiral-shaped pasta (trottole)
- Semi-circle pasta (gomiti)
- Twisted pasta (fusilli)
- White glue
- Brown paper
- Hard cardboard
- Blue transparent paper
- Cotton wool
- Water-based paint (blue and red)
- Glue the brown paper (the beach) and the blue transparent paper (the sea) in two broad strips across the cardboard.
- Paint some semi-circle, spiral, and twisted pasta shapes in blue (for waves) and red (for the sun’s rays). Leave the pasta to dry.
- Let your children’s creativity flow as they decorate the beach collage.
- Paste the remaining semi-circle pasta on the brown paper. Introduce the shell-shaped pasta by telling your children these are seashells.
- Ask your children to paste the blue pasta on the blue transparent paper to create waves.
- Paste the on the red pasta to make a sun.
- Glue some cotton-wool as clouds at the top of the collage.
This beach collage provides plenty of opportunities for your children to explore different craft techniques and will contribute to their future art skills. When your children engage in activities like these, they get to explore their environments, and are able to exercise their imaginations to create something new. Many children find it difficult to communicate their feelings and experiences in words – art is, therefore, a great visual medium for trying out new vocabulary. Additionally, arts and crafts enhance your children’s fine motor skills – holding a brush to paint pasta, for example, may aid your child’s hand-eye coordination.
If this beach collage is the first arts and crafts activity you have attempted with your children, keep the project relatively simple, so that they will gain confidence and want to try something more challenging in the future. Put aside plenty of time to enjoy art and craft activities with your children. Don’t limit their creativity, and definitely let them get messy! If you’re worried about having to remove paint or glue stains from you children’s clothing, make sure they put on an apron, and consider covering up your work surface with newspaper, or an old sheet.