Time for Art: Nature Rubbing

Now I know why my kids insist on removing all of the paper from our crayons… they were eagerly awaiting this nature rubbing activity! We literally have a bag full of “skinless” crayons.

Skinless crayons… that term kind of grosses me out, but it gets the idea across!


So we were set on the crayons! And they did seem to genuinely enjoy running around the yard checking out the textures of different objects.

And of course there’s always a little distraction experimentation, right?!


With a 1 0r 2 year old I would demonstrate how to do it. Lead them to some good surfaces to try on their own, and then emphasize seeing the texture on the paper as well as feeling the textures with their fingers. That way they are getting to match what they see on their creation to what they feel with their hand. And, of course help give them the names to label those textures (bumpy, smooth, rough, etc).

With an older 2, 3 & 4 I recommend demonstrating, pointing out how different textures make different marks on the paper, and then really letting them experiment. They will gain the most from the activity if it can be a trial and error experimental experience.


Let’s talk about what’s going on in this activity:

Art Processes: This activity offers a little twist on classic coloring by turning the color on it’s side. Doing this allows your child to just get a little different perspective on ways to use a crayon.


Fine motor: Turning the crayon on it’s side also uses different muscles than the traditional “pencil” hold.

Figuring out how to hold the crayon the new way is kind of tricky!


Sensory: I’ve said this before, but sensory activities aren’t just those that take place in a water table. Sensory is really just using our 5 senses to experience something. In this case, your child can connect the textures they feel to the pattern they see on their paper!


Communication: The sky is the limit… literally if you are outside! Be sure to give your kids new words with lot’s of description of colors, textures, things you see, smell and feel. Ask questions and get them thinking about new concepts.

Give this activity a try this week! For instructions and materials list go to Summer Week 12

Happy Playing!



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