Written by Debbie Markland, December 2020
Since I have been spending the majority of my time back in school outside due to COVID, I thought I would share a few outdoor/ natural Christmas art ideas.
I loved making these Christmas trees on cardboard with sticks. We first gathered sticks on a fun nature walk around our school. I made a sample using those sticks so we could talk about the lengths of the sticks getting smaller towards the top to form a triangle. We then dumped the sticks out and started gluing. I teach three year olds, and this was the first time we had used glue bottles. And… we will be using them again. They loved squeezing the bottles and what a great workout for their fine motor muscles! We started with the trunk of the tree and then with a long-ish stick and continued to make the sticks smaller as they got to the top of the tree. They had fun breaking the small sticks to try and make the right size. They turned out great!
For a more detailed version of this activity, look HERE.
Another activity we did in our class this last week was paint rocks and stencil them with a snowflake. They turned out really cool! We painted the rocks blue, let them dry and then stenciled a snowflake with white paint.
My nieces also teach three year olds, and they too are spending the majority of their time outside. They too did some nature art for Christmas. They painted with Christmas tree branches! These are so easy to gather- you can simply walk up to any Christmas tree lot and they will gladly give you some!
As you can see, they also love just cutting the branches – great scissor practice! You can even put their small cuttings into some playdough!
My nieces also helped their children make these adorable tree cookie ornaments. The children used their fingerprints to form a Christmas tree and then added some simple lines and voila – looks adorable! I don’t like to do too many fingerprints and handprints, but I love some adorable Christmas art with cute little fingerprints and cute little handprints! My own children (now 22, 20, and 17) have some amazing fingerprints and handprints around the house during the holidays!
Using nature in art projects is so simple, and the end result is always beautiful!
About the Author: Debbie Markland
Hi! I am Debbie Markland, Education Consultant for Learn As You Play. I live in Atlanta, GA where I teach 3 year olds! I have taught for 18 years total! I have worked with age 2 all the way through middle school. I have enjoyed watching the ebb and flow of educational practices since I first taught in 1991, and being immersed in these changes enables my own learning to continue. I like to describe myself as flexible, creative, and open-minded. I strive to continuously be building curiosity in my students!