Preschool Nature Art

Getting out into nature is healthy and fun for kids (and adults!) But what about bringing nature inside?  There are lots of ways to do this with young children.  Today let’s looks at bringing nature into your preschool art activities.

Simple is Best.

Here’s the part where I talk about simplicity.  You don’t need to make things complicated with kids. In fact, if you offer too much at one time, it can be overwhelming for them.  So I’m going to make lots of suggestions in this post, but the idea is to offer one or maybe up to a few materials at a time.  Offer the same things for several days in a row.  Let kids experiment and gain experience–they don’t need a new activity every day.  Repetition is good!

Collage Tips for Using Nature Items

Okay, tip #1 for creating collages with items from nature:  you need drippy, gloppy glue.  No glue sticks for this one.  Items from nature are usually one or more of the following: bumpy, heavy, uneven… They don’t lay flat, so they need big globs of stickiness to keep them adhered to the paper.  Which leads to tip #2:  save your food and shipping boxes.  You want a heavier surface than just plain paper.  Cut up sections from food and shipping boxes are perfect for this–and you’re re-using, so there’s that earth-friendly bonus, too.

Nature Items + Glue

Okay, now that you’ve got your cardboard cut up and ready, let’s glue some stuff to it!  The possibilities are only limited by what you can find in the world around you: shells, sand (sprinkle it on with a tiny spoon or salt shaker), leaves, grasses, flowers, weeds, acorns, pebbles, sticks. Have friends or family (or pen pals) in other parts of the country or world?  How fun to trade items from nature!

Don’t forget to mix things up over time.  Maybe add a little color to your glue.  Or choose nature items that are all of one color/texture/type–collage with various types of rocks; or different types of pine cones; or only purple flower petals…

Nature Items + Paint

There are two main things you can do with paint and items from nature:  Paint ON the items, or paint WITH the items.  Here are some ideas:

Paint ON: branches/twigs; shells; large or small leaves; rocks/stones/pebbles; pine cones.  (Add a little glue to your paint if it tends to flake off when dry.) Use sponges, q-tips, or paint brushes of various sizes.

Paint WITH: evergreen boughs; leaves of varied types and sizes; sticks and twigs; pine cones/rocks/acorns (shake them up in a lidded, plastic tub or roll them in a shallow pan lined with paper).

Okay, go grab a few kids and a paper bag and get out there to start collecting for your next nature and art extravaganza!

Shop fine motor fun without the goop!

  • Goldilocks felt boar with Instant Download text

    Pattern: Goldilocks and the Three Bears Felt Board Story

  • Rainbow Stew felt board set with lyric card

    Rainbow Stew

  • Little Mouse felt set spread out on gray desk

    Little Mouse, Little Mouse

  • Duck and truck bingo flannel board story time pieces with lyric card

    Truck Song and Game Set

  • PDF Pattern Instant Download Squirrel Felt Board Set

    Pattern: Squirrel and Acorn Felt Board Rhyme

  • Little Mouse felt board set surrounded by Instant Download text

    Pattern: Little Mouse Felt Board Game


Want Some Goodies?

Grab a free song and dance cube for preschooly fun right here!