Of Clear Contact Paper....
contact paper is an inexpensive material that can easily be purchased at
your local hardware store, Wal-Mart, and many other stores that
carry home improvement and home decorating products.
It's traditional use is as a shelf or drawer liner. But due to
its adhesive backing, the clear variety of contact paper lends
itself to many creative uses. For this reason it can
also be ordered from some teacher supply catalogs, in the art
What to do with it:
Note: if your school
or daycare center has a large size laminating machine, that's a
great way to go for many of these projects! But if one is not
available, or if it cannot handle your larger size projects, then
try clear contact paper as follows...
and protecting walls and tabletops where young children, and their art
materials, make frequent stains and messes.
educational posters &
pictures, so that they last longer when placed at children's eye level. (Very helpful around toddlers.)
||"Laminating" a variety
of art projects, from paper placemats to handprint Christmas
tree ornaments to make them last longer and resist moisture.
base or background material for collage projects -- no glue needed!
Suggested Art Projects:
Colored Sand Collage
Wish Upon A Cloud
Fat puffy cotton balls
nested on a
cloud-shaped sheet of clear contact paper form the basis of this
mobile. Add some colorful streamers in rainbow colors, and you've
created an easy spring "masterpiece".
White cotton balls
Colored ribbon, party streamers, or etc. in rainbow or other bright
What To Do:
This is a
very easy project -- suitable even for young toddlers. But do watch them
with the cotton balls to be sure they don't end up in the mouth and into
out a large cloud shape from the clear contact paper -- no bigger
than 8x10, or it will become floppy and hard to handle. Punch a hole in
the top with a hole punch, to hang it by later. If you are using
ribbon, then use a hole punch to make several holes along the bottom of
the "cloud". Have your child help you decide what color
ribbons to use and where each one goes. (This will foster
creativity and a sense of self-determination.) If you are using
streamers, simply stick them on at the "bottom" of the cloud.
Pull and fluff the cotton balls to add volume and a softer look, then
have your child stick them onto the contact paper. They may choose
to completely fill in the "cloud" or not. If they lose interest,
half way through (as young toddlers do with many activities they start),
just set the project aside for them to return to later.
When it's all done, push a white thread through
the hole in the top and tie it in a loop to hang from the ceiling or
in a window. Be sure to point out to family members who made
this pretty mobile!
These make great decorations
for the Christmas tree, but can also be used for gift tags,
refrigerator magnets, or other decorative purposes. Add a
small, wallet-sized image of your child to make it extra special.
Grandparents and doting aunts and uncles love receiving these
special mementos. And, as Christmas tree hangers, they can
also be a fun way to use duplicate photos of your child with Santa
-- if you got your child to sit with Santa.
A willing child!
Colored construction paper
A peel and stick magnet or a short length of ribbon
Optional: a photo of your child, stickers, markers, glitter glue,
What To Do:
Trace your child's hand on the piece of
construction paper, and cut it out. (Hint: you may want to use
the first one as a template to cut several.) Glue your child's
photo on the palm of one side with glue stick, and then add other
decorations around it. Please note: if you are using
glitter glue, spread it around very thinly, otherwise the
"lamination" will come out lumpy, and may not stick in places.
If this is not to be a magnet ornament, then go ahead and decorate
the other side with a special message, stickers, etc.
The back side would be a great space to let your child take charge
of, since you won't have to worry about the photo becoming covered
in marker or stickers, etc. (You can also let them color on it
before you glue the photo on.)
Once all glue is dry, cut two small squares of
clear contact paper. Each should be large enough to completely
fit the hand, with at least half an inch left over all around.
Now peel the backing off one sheet and lay the sheet carefully over
the paper handprint. Smooth it down completely, pressing out
any bubbles and making sure that the contact paper makes full
contact with the surfaces of the handprint decoration. Now
repeat with the other sheet of contact paper, on the other side of
the handprint. Trim around the handprint leaving at least a
1/4 inch seam or overlap of clear contact paper. This
will allow the two sheet of contact paper to bond to each other, and
will seal out dirt and moisture. (Please note that this
craft can be displayed outdoors, but will eventually be spoiled by
Now you can either attach a stick on magnet to
the back of the handprint, or punch a hole and run some pretty
ribbon through it to make a loop for hanging. If you like, use
a long enough piece of ribbon that you can tie a nice bow when you
join the ends. Enjoy!
These are a fun art project that can actually be
put to practical use. They are great for holidays, a
birthday, or just anytime! What's more, the project can easily
be adjusted for children of any age, toddler through "tween" and
beyond. Even the grown-ups can sit down and join in. And
later, everyone can have a meal together on their new placemats.
Large rectangular sheet of construction paper
Stickers, markers, stamping equipment, stencils, tempra paints,
glitter, magazine clippings, glue, etc.
Imagination and a desire to have fun!
What To Do:
Talk with the children about the project.
Explain the theme or occasion or simply brainstorm ideas together.
Small children will need more direction: "Would you like to put some
of these stickers on?", "...Hmm... what could we put over in
this area?", "Are your ready to use your crayons?" All
children will feel more inspired to see an adult working on a
similar project, especially if the adult lets the little kid in them
out to play, rather than attempting "serious" art.
Do remind school-age children that nothing too
thick should be applied and that there must be smooth surfaces for
the contact paper to stick to. When toddlers and young
preschoolers seem to be about to add too much to the placemat,
simply redirect them to a fresh piece of paper. You don't need
to "laminate" each one they do. (But you may want to hide the
contact paper, if you make this decision! "All done!")
A sticky sheet of clear
contact paper, cut in the shape of a spider web, is decorated with
glitter in fun Halloween color along with confetti spiders and other fun
decorations. A white paper background increases web-like appeal.
This project lets very young children exercise their creativity and feel
proud of their "I made it myself" accomplishment.
(orange, black, silver, or white)
What To Do:
you will need to create a web shape pattern out of paper -- you
decide how large. Then, cut contact paper into squares that will
accommodate the size of your pattern. Trace the pattern onto the
contact paper, and then cut out. (You can lay a few sheets together
and cut them all out at once if you are doing many.)
provide the child with the contact paper cut out and help her peel
the backing off. Don't lay the sticky side down against the table --
you need it facing up so that the collage materials stick to it!
can now sprinkle whatever confetti or glitter you have provided. If
you have paper punches, you or the child can make the confetti out of
orange or black paper.
fake "spider web" decoration material could even be added
to this project!
child has finished decorating (don't let them cover ALL the sticky
side!), take a sheet of plain white paper and lay over the collage,
pressing down to get it to stick. Then flip the whole collage over.
like, you or the child can cut off the excess paper. Punch a whole
through the top side of the "web" and hang it up to decorate
the home or classroom.
This is a
very easy project -- suitable even for young toddlers!
project using black construction paper instead of white. Be sure to
use light colored collage materials!
could easily do this project as a snowflake ( a great way to use
leftover contact paper cut outs). Just use white confetti, or
prepackaged snowflake confetti, and some pretty white glitter.
Back to Projects for