Valentine’s Day Early Years Craft

Valentine’s Day is a great time to be talking about love, affection and ways of expressing love.

There are many different types of love – the romantic kind, of course, but for small children this isn’t really relevant. So there’s the love for parents, siblings, friends, carers, pets and even a favourite teddy. Ask the children who they love – I’m sure there will be some surprising answers! Read the rest of this entry »

14 Fun Facts About Monkeys

Since it’s the Year of the Monkey in the Chinese calendar I thought I would give you some fun facts to share with the children. Read the rest of this entry »

Three Resources for Early Years Creativity

Over the years I’ve come across some great resources for you to be inspired by. So here are three that I’ve found really useful:

The first one is Earlyarts who provide training, research and evidence on the benefits of the arts in early years, ‘how to’ guides and more. Read the rest of this entry »

What Happens When You Order With Artful Dodgers

We’re a small but happy team here at Artful Dodgers. And our main aim is to give you a brilliant service … with a smile.

So what happens once you have placed your order? Read the rest of this entry »

Early Years Christmas Painting and Collage

It was my last session at Toddler Group today. So when I asked what people wanted to do they said, ‘everything’.

Not very helpful really! So I decided to do the messy things because the children love it and the mums are grateful they don’t have to do it at home. Read the rest of this entry »

Developing Art Activities Where The Children Can’t Fail

I’m coming to the end of my time with the toddler group. It’s been an exciting three-year journey and I’ve learnt so much from the children. I’d like to extend my thanks to all the children, and their mums, for letting me experiment on them.

When I started, I used to have long conversations with my husband about what I should do with the children. Being the one who had looked after our own children when they were young, having a theatre degree and having worked for a short while with youngsters he was a great sounding board. Read the rest of this entry »

Early Years Construction

I love presenting the children with the opportunity to do 3D work. That, and the fact that I’ve collected a mountain of bottle tops for collage, was how the idea for today’s activity was born. Read the rest of this entry »

Using Crayons on a Large Scale

This is an activity I saw on Facebook so I thought I’d try it out with the tots. It’s a bit like creating snow angels but with crayons. Tape a large sheet of paper to the floor (I used two sheets of poster paper cut from a roll), sit on the paper then, with a crayon in each hand, repeatedly move your arms in a sweeping motion at your side. Two arcs will appear. If you want to make a circle then shuffle round on the spot and repeat.
So, that was the plan. Read on to find out what actually happened. Read the rest of this entry »

Early Years Portrait Painting

We had fun with this project. There are loads of processes involved and each child brought their own unique interpretation to it. Some followed what we were doing and others (generally the younger children) played with all the processes.

I say this time and again, but there’s no harm in reminding you, that at this age it’s the process that matters not the product. Read the rest of this entry »

Exploring Textiles With Early Years

Textiles are materials that are woven together or are bonded together either mechanically or naturally.

For the toddlers this week I gathered together a big pile of scarves, a mixture of ribbons and lace as well as fabric petals and artificial leaves. Read the rest of this entry »