Activity time: 15 minutes
Materials for Activity
- For sculpture: Modeling clay, in different colors, a fist-sized ball for each child; plastic sandwich bags, one for each child; and a permanent marker
- For Rorschach painting: Newspaper to cover work tables; tempera paint, two colors; dishes for paint; paint brushes; heavy paper, a least three sheets for each child; pencil
- Moistened paper towels
- Optional: Smocks, one for each child
- Optional: Digital camera or smartphone
Preparation for Activity
- Decide whether children will sculpt, paint, or have a choice.
- Obtain supplies.
- For the Rorschach painting, prepare each sheet of paper by gently folding it in half, drawing a pencil line along the crease, then unfolding the paper.
- Cover work tables with newspaper. Then, set out materials on work tables.
Description of Activity
Children make a soft clay sculpture or a Rorschach painting.
Sculpture. Have the children gather at the activity table. Invite them to use their imaginations and create a sculpture of something crazy or different or silly-whatever they can dream up! Suggest that if they'd like to add other colors to their sculpture, they may ask their neighbors to share. Encourage the children to experiment with different designs. Give a few minutes warning before children must finish their work. Place each play dough sculpture in a plastic sandwich bag and write the child's name on the bag. Set bags near the door for the children to take home later.
Rorschach painting. Gather children at the activity table. Give each child a smock to wear (optional). Point out that there is a line on the paper, a "halfway" line. Ask them to paint on one half (one side) of the paper only. Encourage them to use their imaginations and to use several different colors, if they like. When they have painted half of a page, have them fold the paper and press the sides together to "print" their design on the other half of the paper. What do they think it looks like? Encourage them to make a variety of designs. Write their names on the paintings. Set paintings aside to dry.
Invite the children to help clean up. They can gather the newspaper to throw out, put away the art supplies, and wipe the table with moistened paper towels. Have children wash their hands. Make sure no one has wet paint or modeling clay on their clothes or shoes.
Including All Participants
If any children in the group have gluten allergies, make homemade play dough without cream of tartar; find a good recipe here. If any child uses a wheelchair, make sure there is a work table at the appropriate height that has room for other children to join them and work together.