This toddler ocean art might look like a craft, but it’s really process art.
And you know I am all about process art, right?
Recently our preschoolers made colorful jellyfish. While those also involved process art (spraying the tentacles with watercolors), I knew we needed something simpler for our toddlers.
Toddlers love to stamp with paper tubes. Why? It’s the motion. It allows them to make big movements with their arms. This an important step in fine motor development. We’ve also stamped circles and blended colors using paper tubes.
I’ve added some other toddler ocean resources at the end of this post, too.
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Toddler Ocean Art
What we used:
- Paper tubes (toilet paper tubes or paper towel tubes that have been cut in half)
- Washable tempera paint
- White paper cut into fish shapes
I pressed the edges of the paper tube together so they sort of curved, to resemble fish scales. I then stapled them to keep the tube from popping open again. I placed them in shallow trays of paint and placed the paper shapes on the table.
When our toddlers arrive each morning, we immediately begin our free-choice centers time. (You can see our morning schedule here.) One of their first stops is the art table, so we make sure it’s ready to go.
Toddlers love art activities that don’t require much instruction. They like simple art.
By this time of the school year, they know to look for the paint or glue, the tool to apply it, and the paper. The less I need to tell them, the better. They just want to go at it.
We used big buttons for the eyes.
That’s it! Simple and fun, the way toddlers love art.
More ideas for your toddler ocean theme:
Sticky Fish from Toddler Approved
Handprint Octopus from I Heart Arts n Crafts
Ocean in a Bottle from Happy Hooligans
Paper Tube Octopus from My Bored Toddler
More toddler ideas: