Simple Strip Collage

June 11, 2013

Simple Strip Collage - an easy art  activity for little hands

Sometimes I forget that our smallest child, Noah, hasn’t been around and done all the stuff that the bigger kids have. He often just tags along with whatever activity the rest of the kids are doing, which often means he doesn’t have much of a chance to really explore things that are new to him. When I saw him gluing his hand with the glue stick on the weekend it reminded me that he hasn’t really done any plain and simple gluing.

So today I planned another ‘back to basics’ activity for Noah and I – simple strip collage.

You’ll Need:

Simple Strip Collage - an easy art  activity for little hands

  • Paste – nice thick homemade corn flour paste doesn’t drip.
  • A container for the paste – pick one with a lid so you can pop it in the fridge and save the left overs.
  • A nice chunky brush for the paste – we used one of these given to us by Micador
  • Strips of paper – you could use old magazines or junk mail, recycled wrapping paper, old paintings, anything you like.
  • A big, thick sheet of paper or cardboard to paste on.
  • A cloth for sticky fingers
  • Scissors – an optional extra

You’ll Do:

Cut strips of paper and pop them in a container. I used plain coloured paper because that is what we had, but this would be fun with all kinds of paper. Noah is very interested in labellings colours and sorting things at the moment so I arranged each colour in it’s own pile, but you don’t have to be that fancy.

Why long thin strips of paper?

  • They are easy for small hands to grab, manipulate and stick.
  • They make a variety of interesting shapes and papers with little effort.
  • They are also easy for beginners to cut and snip with scissors.

I cooked up a batch of our home made corn flour/corn starch paste while I cut up the strips of paper. I made it nice and thick so it wouldn’t drip and added a drop of lavender oil so everything would smell nice while we pasted.

Be warned – there will be a LOT of glue when small people have a go at this. This activity is as much about experimenting with the glue, feeling it on your fingers, and discovering how much you need to make something stick as it is about actually sticking the paper to the base.

Simple Strip Collage - an easy art  activity for little hands

Make sure the base you choose for this activity is thick enough to withstand all the clue. Cut up cereal boxes or other cardboard works well if you don’t have thick drawing or painting paper. You’ll need some somewhere flat to lay the artwork to dry if you want to keep them… and it will take a while!

Then it was all about the sticking!

Simple Strip Collage - an easy art  activity for little hands

Noah is very interested in learning to use scissors. It is still very early days for this skill, and we are still working on keeping our fingers out of the way, but I was surprised at how well Noah managed. Don’t worry they are safety scissors so he’s not going to cut his fingers!

Simple Strip Collage - an easy art  activity for little hands

Cutting the thin strips is a lot easier as it is just one simple movement to snip off a piece. It also helps to have sturdy paper that doesn’t ‘flop’ while a young cutter is getting everything in the right spot ready to snip.

Simple Strip Collage - an easy art  activity for little hands

Have you done any sticking, gluing and collage making lately?

{disclosure – We were given a variety of Micador art supplies, including those mentioned in this post. There was no obligation to blog about them, no other compensation was received and the opinions expressed in this post are purely my own.}

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Lynda @ all about mama June 11, 2013 at 4:26 pm

What a cutie..he looks like he is having a great time. There is something about cutting and gluing that kids just love don’t they? Mine love it…the glue gets a real working out, they use so much it takes a whole day to dry:). We also go to the library once a week where they do story time, singing and craft at the end (where they make something related to the main story that was read). I get the feeling that the highlight for all the kids (especially mine) is the making of something with the scissors and glue. Thanks for the colourful strips idea, will have to give that a go.


Jode@mummymusingsandmayhem June 11, 2013 at 9:14 pm

I just love the concentration on that face! Been trying to think of more pasting activities as Ruby often has trouble with the stickiness so this is one to try…love the simplicity but all the skills used to!Pinned and shared x


Kirsten McCulloch June 11, 2013 at 9:21 pm

Oh, this makes me want to make some paste tomorrow! Actually, I think I may have some in the fridge, I wonder how long it lasts?

My Eliane – who’s three as well as being number three – also misses out on getting to do real toddler/preschooler stuff sometimes. She loves cutting though, so I can see this activity ending up with lots of little bits of paper everywhere! But she loves pasting too, and doesn’t get to do it near as often as she would like. Thanks for the idea of cereal boxes as a base, that will definitely be one I use.

For Christmas we gave my one-year-old nephew one of those large bead maze toys, which was impossible to wrap, so we put it in a big box and the kids covered it with cut up pieces of Christmas wrapping. Actually, I think that might be what the paste in the fridge is from. They had a great time though, even my 11 year old :)


Hannah June 11, 2013 at 11:47 pm

Thank you. You’ve just reminded me to do more cutting and gluing with my kids. They love it don’t they?


Kate@LaughingKidsLearn June 11, 2013 at 11:58 pm

What a great post. I’m sure he was very proud of the final product. I had to giggle about your light bulb moment that came from watching him use a glue stick on his hand. Very cute.


Renee @ adventuresathomewithmum June 12, 2013 at 12:03 am

Great post
This is something we need to do more of, it’s so simple yet we don’t often bring out the glue


Jessica @ Play Trains! June 12, 2013 at 6:59 am

This is great! My son has had a hard time getting into gluing things on paper, but I think this might help. Thanks…I’m pinning this to do with him. :-)


Kelly June 12, 2013 at 12:50 pm

Love how colourful they are.


Alana June 12, 2013 at 1:26 pm

looks like he had lots of fun!


Kelly June 12, 2013 at 6:29 pm

Such a great reminder, that even simple crafts for us are great fun for kids! I think I often forget this, so thank you!


Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky June 13, 2013 at 5:00 pm

I just love your art ideas, they are so beautifully simple. Pebble will love this.


adenike June 14, 2013 at 3:15 pm

Thanks always for great ideas that opens up both adult n kids minds. We are going a-glueing right away


Mama is Inspired June 15, 2013 at 3:33 pm

We are so clearly on the same page this week! I love both your collages and your post. We will try this out as an addition to the collages we have already been making!


Debs June 16, 2013 at 12:35 pm

I love the idea of adding a bit of lavender oil to the glue. What a simple way to add an extra sensory element :)


Sara September 21, 2013 at 12:54 pm

My son has just started to love glue, and so we are just getting into the glueing world. Would you mind sharing the recipe for homemade paste?




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