Creating artwork is a fun way for young children to explore many mathematical ideas, such as shape, pattern and arrangement. Developed in collaboration with STEM Education Research Centre (SERC), this activity is a great way for little ones to explore these different concepts through art!
Using a range of different objects and materials for children to create their artwork gives them the opportunity to notice the attributes of shapes. For example, how many corners and sides a square, star or triangle has and how they can position them on the paper to make repeating patterns.
A great STEM-based painting activity to try at home with your little one is painting with various objects. Plastic blocks or toys, LEGO, household and kitchen utensils, sticks and leaves, even cut up fruit and vegetables to print or trace around with are all great options
It is important that children have the opportunity to discuss their art with you to help develop language skills associated with their chosen images.
Once they are finished painting, encourage your little ones to describe their creations and ask them open-ended questions about the placement of their shapes and designs. For example:
- “Can you tell me about your painting?”
- “What colours have you used?”
- “What shapes are in your painting?”
This will encourage them to use positional language such as ‘on’, ‘below’ and ‘beside’ and how they got there such as ‘through’, ‘across’ and ‘over.’
Painting with objects provides an opportunity to establish and build upon your little one’s creative skills and experiment with different textures. It is a way for them to experience many important things, such as convey ideas, express emotion, use their senses, explore mixing colours and outcomes, and can be quite a soothing process.
For more tips and activities to do with your little ones click here