boy playing in box at preschool
girl creating paper mache at preschool
paper mache at carmel mountain preschool

To continue with our exploration of paper, we created Paper Mache Sculptures with paper and flour paste. This was another messy project. The sensory table had flour and water to play with. The children could weave with yarn, fabric on cardboard. They had some fun with boxes, first just hanging out in our box car and then decorated the big boxes with colorful paint.

See below for more adventures in Tinker Hollow.

examples of paper mache at preschool
students painting carb board at preschool

Books that we read:

muddle and match
wolfie the bunny

Want to draw Wolfie, here’s the link:

indesribably arabella

Paper Mache is a Historic Art Form
This art form has been used for thousands of years. Ancient Egyptians created paper mache masks, while Persians created bowls and trays and Europeans used decorative paper mache in place of painted wood or plaster. Here are some really cool examples of this art from the internet.

There are also plenty of flour paste alternatives if you or your child are allergic. You can experiment with different materials and see what works best for you. Plus, it’s fun to play and create different potions with everyday kitchen supplies.
Liquid starch (undiluted): Although primarily for ironing clothes, this thickened, sticky liquid is perfect for paper mache projects.
Wallpaper paste: Follow the directions from the manufacturer to mix this paste.
White glue: White glue mixed with about one part water with two to three parts glue. You can use this mixture for a small project.

First, the kids decided what their sculpture would be. Some made hearts, snakes even rainbows. Then they took the strips of paper and dipped them into the paste and applied to the newspaper form. They continue to apply the wet paper until the base shape was completely covered or they were finished and then it went out into the sun to dry. The final step was to decorate or paint their sculpture, which was done in their classroom.

paper mache supplies

How to Make Paper Mache:
Step 1: Gather the supplies. Old newspapers or colored tissue paper, flour, water, tape, scissors

newspapers
flour
water
masking tape
scissors

Step 2: Prepare the paste.
Get some flour and water, this is the beginning of the fun mess. Mix together in a container. I usually do one part water and one part flour.

flour 2

+

water 2

=

paper mache paste

Step 3: Tear or cut the newspaper into strips.

newspaper strips
newspaper strips 2

Step 4: Make a form out of the newspaper, box or you can use a balloon for the shape as well. Use your imagination here, lots of animals and things can be made out of newspaper and tape.

paper mache shapes

Step 5: Dip the strips of paper in the mixture and apply to the form. This can get super messy, and that’s ok, I suggest this to be an outdoor project. Repeat until the form is covered, I like to do multiple layers to make it thick and sturdy.

boy creating paper mache at preschool
boy creating paper mache at preschool
girl making paper mache outside at preschool
preschool students making paper mache at preschool

Step 6: Let dry and then you can decorate with paint or anything really. If you used a balloon, you have to pop it. You can also cut the paper mache into a bowl as well.

shapes of paper mache
heart shaped paper mache
paper mache frog
paper mache bowl

Over all this was a mess, a big fun mess and most of the children loved it. I hope you all try this at home. If you are one of the lucky ones with a very clean loving child, this is a great way to have them try something new. Have a great day! Much love Miss. Stacie