Inside: It’s easy to teach shape recognition with activities like this toddler square art activity. Just add some blocks and paint and start stamping on paper!
You know all those shape sorters, nesting blocks, and puzzles that are sitting in your storage closet?
Consider using some of them at the art table!
You all know by now that I am a huge fan of process art. In fact, I recently shared how we painted with our jumbo nuts and bolts.
I’ve observed what types of art activities light my students up, and there is no question that process art wins.
So, when working on new skills, such as shape recognition, I once again thought of how I could create a process art activity that included squares.
👉 Scroll down towards end of this post to get your free squares activities printable packet!
How to Put Together a Toddler Square Art Activity that Is Busy and Fun
The first thing you will need for this activity are blocks that can handle paint.
Plastic is my first choice since it’s so washable.
Here are some choices:
Then, you need to think about how you want to set it up.
Setting Up this Toddler Square Art Activity
In our 2 year old class, I wanted something that they all could do together. We’ve been working on sharing space (since 2 year olds seem to move around in packs!), and so rather than giving each child his own piece of paper, I decided to use large sheets. This would encourage them to share the space, share the materials, and use their verbal skills to communicate what they needed.
I taped the paper to the table so it wouldn’t slide around (less frustration), and squirted paint into trays.
I also moved the chairs away from the table so that they could move around if they wished.
Introducing this Toddler Square Art Activity
Before we start any new activity, I always have our children meet on our circle carpet. I am very consistent with this so that they know that we are about to move on to something new.
Young children have have a difficult time moving from one part of the day to another, and this extra step has made a world of difference.
I brought our nesting blocks to the circle and showed the children how each one was a different size. We noticed the largest square and the smallest square. And I explained how we would be dipping them into the paint and then stamping them onto the paper.
Circle time is also when books about squares can be read:
Once I excused the children to the art table, they started stamping the squares onto the paper.
Having 10 children stamping squares onto a surface can be (and was!) rather loud, but that made the activity even more fun for these 2 year olds.
And, because I have a group of children who love to touch paint, the fingers got involved, too.
They stamped for quite awhile (which says a lot for this age group) and then, just like that, they were finished.
And while this activity appears messy, clean up is really easy. I simply dumped everything into the sink with hot soapy water and then rinsed. (Which is why I chose plastic!)
Now the blocks are back on the shelf to be played with.
I love being able to use toys for other purposes!
A fun, hands-on way to teach squares to toddlers!
Click on the photo below to get your FREE squares printable packet:
More toddler shape activities:
Come see how we set up our classroom for the shapes and colors theme!
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