August 23, 2017

Teach Your Toddler to Enjoy Arts and Crafts Through the Senses of Touch and Smell

Do you want to enhance your toddler’s arts and craft experience? Try craft projects that use as many of their senses as possible and really get the most out of crafting for your young child.

Here are some toddler craft projects that do just that:

  • Finger painting: Finger painting is always a fun activity and craft to do because it allows your toddler to actually ‘feel’ the craft as well as be creative. Make your own finger paints from ingredients in your cupboard that already have wonderful scents, such as pudding or jello. This way you won’t worry if a little paint actually ends up in the mouth. Encourage your toddler to smell the paint before creating their masterpiece.
  • Sandpaper Art – Have your toddler “feel” lots of different textures while creating art work on a piece of sandpaper. Cut various colors of yarn into different lengths. Show your toddler how to stick the yarn to the sandpaper and make designs. It’s easy to create a design, take it off, and start all over. This mess-free activity is easy to pack up and take with you when you know you will be away from home. Cut pieces of yarn into various lengths. Try to select yarns that come in various colors and textures (thick and bulky, soft and fluffy, metallic, and rough.) Then put them in a plastic bag for an “on the go” craft.
  • Texture Art – Find different types of objects that are rough, smooth, bumpy, ect. Some good selections are leaves, plastic bubble wrap, corrugated cardboard, and textured fabric scraps. Then put a piece of paper on top of the object and have your child color on top of the paper in order to get textured designs. Now have your child feel their design. Ask them questions like, “How does this feel? Is it rough or smooth?”
  • Spaghetti Mobile – Use some warm spaghetti noodles and prepare several containers of glue colored with food coloring. Show your toddler how to dip the pieces of pasta into the colored glue and place on a piece of wax paper or empty Styrofoam meat tray. Continue the process until you have a nice design of colored spaghetti. If desired, add some natural oils used for cooking like peppermint, orange, lemon, almond, and/or food coloring. Have them identify the fragrance to you. When dry, tie a piece of yarn or ribbon to the top and hang as a mobile.

Pam Laughlin is owner and chief crafter at For more fun craft ideas and detailed instructions make sure to check out Kraftykid’s selection of free toddler craft projects .

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