Building without blocks....Creative character design for kids!
2015 sees the start of a new Doodles term and the theme this spring is 'I wish...' where we will be exploring imaginative activities to get the Doodles kids into character.
The first week began with a friendly introduction to a series of jungle animals as we all became explorers for the morning. After a lot of roaring practice we started on some creative and sensory play with an emphasis on building characters (without blocks!)....
We often like to engage the kids in some large scale making and this time used lots of hand painting and collage to build on our huge crocodile sculptures.
By encouraging the use of different textiles, wool, paper shreds, cotton wool and card each crocodile started to transform into an individual character. The idea was to explore the different textures from hard to soft, squidgy to smooth and also add some of the 3D element to their final designs by building up a picture! This helps with creating a dialogue and includes an element of storytelling whilst the kids are creating.
To extend the character play, kids could make their own jungle designs. String 'vines' hung next to the crocodiles with mini leaves and pipe cleaner 'snakes'. Using the same collage technique we wrapped, twirled and built up materials onto the wires to make a wiggly snakes and used plenty of tape in the process. TIP! Masking tape is really easy for smaller hands to tear and manage and is a good substitute for glue as it achieves the sculpture effect instantly when building...much more satisfying for a toddler!
The Doodles kids also got stuck in with some squidgy play dough building. This time the emphasis was on building a mini jungle for our animals using lots of yummy broccoli trees, spring greens and dried pasta! Food items are always a hit and add an element of play discovery to our well loved playdough!
Creative building can be more than just using blocks. By providing a range of basic materials and scraps children can explore and design without any restrictions or instructions.