I have a bit of ‘thing’ for mandalas. I love the symmetry of them, and the patterns, and circles within circles. There is just something magical about them.
I seem to have passed on my mandala love to my kids too, as they were all super keen to have a go at this easy contact paper mandala activity.
To make your own contact paper mandalas you’ll need:
- Contact/Self adhesive paper.
- Tissue paper cut into various shapes
- Mandala template (optional)
Before we started I got my big kids to cut some brightly coloured tissue paper into circles, squares, triangles and rectangles. If you are working with preschoolers you might want to do this step ahead of time, or just let them cut as they go if you are not worried about perfect symmetry.
While my kids were cutting, I whipped up a simple mandala template on the computer and printed out a few copies. Zoe (aged 10) and I really wanted a template, as we were keen to really work on the symmetry and repeating patterns of the mandala, but you can create these ‘free-hand’ without a template just as easily.
You can download the pdf mandala template here if you’d like to use it too.
Using a plate, I drew circles onto the back of the contact paper, and cut them out. Peeling off the backing paper I taped them sticky side up, on top of the templates with just a tiny piece of tape on each side. Then all we had to do was start creating!
Using the contact paper meant we didn’t need to fuss around with glue, so the mandalas were created quickly and easily. It did mean that when you put the tissue paper down it was stuck in that spot forever, even if you changed your mind, but that led to some interesting experiments with overlapping colours, and some lateral thinking to change ‘mistakes’ into master pieces.
Zoe, Morgan and I were all about the symmetry and patterns as we worked, but Izzy quickly discovered the joy of making pictures with the shapes, and Noah (aged 3) was able to join in and stick whatever he wanted, wherever he wanted, to make bright patterns and creations. I love an activity like this, where there are no rules, and everyone can do their own thing and enjoy the process of creating.
Before long I was cutting out more and more contact paper circles and we had a whole lot of magical mandalas and circular creations.
I chose to use tissue paper for this activity because I had an idea of how we could display them when they were done… we simply stuck the contact paper mandalas onto our large glass sliding doors!
For more great ideas for preschool aged kids buy this great ebook!