I have been all about vertical wall activities lately (as seen in my newest product here - the hanging felt mat). But it's good for toddlers and preschoolers to work on a surface other than a table or the floor, in which they are bent over their project.
When something is hanging up on a wall, they are required to stand or kneel and raise their arms often. This strengthens their muscles, especially their shoulders. These vertical activities also help with bilateral coordination (working with both hands), crossing the midline (reaching across the body), and it puts their wrist in the perfect position for the pencil grasp.
Felt boards, magnetic boards, or painting on an easel are all great vertical activities. Contact paper on a wall may be a lesser known activity, but so easy and inexpensive to set up. I will show you how to set up this invitation to make a Contact Paper Turkey that is a really fun craft for Thanksgiving.
Here is what you'll need:
- Contact paper (found at the Dollar Store or in the shelf liner section of Target, Walmart, etc.)
- Painters tape
- Google eyes
- Brown construction paper or tissue paper
- Orange construction paper or tissue paper.
- Scissors (optional)
Here is what you need to set it up:
- Cut a piece of contact paper from your roll.
- Draw a turkey body on the clear side.
- Start to peel off the backing from the top corner and stop when just the top is peeled off.
- Use a strip of painter's tape to tape it to the wall (sticky side facing towards you).
- Continue to peel the backing off from other sides and secure it to the wall.
- Decide whether you want the brown and orange pieces (for the beak and feet) to be in small pre-cut pieces or if you want the child to practice scissor skills by cutting their own pieces. This is a great activity to practice cutting because the pieces don't need to be any specific shape. If you want to have them cut and ready to put up, then cut out the beak, feet, and brown pieces beforehand.
- Set up the feathers, google eyes, and paper pieces in a dish or tray.
Your toddler or preschooler will have so much fun making the turkey's face, filling in the turkey body, and adding feathers around the outside. Actually, my almost 7 year old really enjoyed it too! You can take the pieces off and start all over, or you can leave it up for a Thanksgiving decoration!
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