Have your child tear or snip paper strips into small pieces and then use the pieces to collage the background of a regular coloring picture.
Then we built a stable outline with jumbo popsicle sticks and pasted our snipped paper all around the picture. Looks stunning! This is an affiliate link and I will earn a small commission if you purchase a product through my links.
Strips of Paper
Why is this a good activity?
tearing paper with the tripod fingers helps your child to isolate the
use of the fingers that are needed for pencil control. Show your child
how to position the thumbs together on the paper (as above) to make
snipping paper can help a young child learn to master the art of opening
and closing scissors. If your child struggles with this, try some of my
scissor cutting tips and techniques.
your child is using bilateral coordination when both hands are working
together to tear or snip. Eye-hand coordination is used to paste the
Cut the paper strips ahead of time to make it easier for your child, or have an older sibling cut the strips.
Make a cardboard template from a cereal carton or thick cardstock and have your child trace around it onto various papers. Wrapping paper and sheet music can make a pretty addition to regular colored cardstock.
Layered decorations are perfect Christmas paper crafts for kids! We used different sizes of stars and circles to make these cute layered paper crafts. We pasted them onto Christmas cards and used them for gift tags and tree decorations.
Tracing Around A Star Template
Piles of Stars
Gift Tags and Cards
Why is this a good activity?
Tracing around a template or stencil requires your child to use both hands together in a coordinated way. One hand is doing most of the work, while the other is assisting. This is an important component of writing skills in the classroom.
Tracing around a template requires your child's eyes to guide the hand in staying on the outline of the template. This is called visual-motor coordination, which is very important in handwriting.
Getting all the way around the template will require your child to plan how to move the hands without bumping the template, and may also involve some crossing of the midline.
Use simple shapes (circles and squares) for younger kids
Thicker templates can be easier to work with
Regular paper is more forgiving than thin wrapping paper
Tracing on the back of the patterned paper means the pencil "skid" marks won't show on the finished product
If you like the idea, but your child struggles with the tracing aspect, print out this free star template onto regular colored cardstock and just have your child cut the shapes out.
If the stars suggested above are too tricky for your child to cut out, try some of these simpler, scissor cutting Christmas paper crafts for kids!
Straight lines are easiest for kids to start with, then they can progress to simple shapes like circles and triangles. Click on each image below to get instructions and free templates for each activity!
Cutting out with scissors can strengthen your child's hands.
If your child holds the scissors correctly, then cutting can also help
get the tripod fingers working well together for better pencil control
cutting requires that both hands work together in a coordinated way to
keep the scissors cutting on the line and around the corners. If your
child struggles with this, read my page on bilateral coordination for some info and tips.
All activities should take place under close adult supervision. Some activities use small items which may cause choking. The activities suggested on this website are NOT a substitute for Occupational Therapy intervention. Please read my disclaimer before you use any of the activities.
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