This summer we took an amazing vacation to the ocean to enjoy the sand and the crashing waves. Several weeks before we left for our trip, Little Bee and I created this fun sensory play ocean art for kids activity.
- Thick Paper Plates
- Thick Green Card Stock Paper
- Tin Foil
- Sand (Tiny Rocks -optional)
- Smaller Seashells
- Paint & Paintbrush - optional if you want to paint the seashells
Seashell Painting and Fine Motor Development
The first art activity that Little Bee enjoyed was painting seashells. I squirted finger paints (red, yellow, green, blue) onto a paint tray for Little Bee to dab his paintbrush in. Looking at the photo below, you can see that Little Bee took this activity very seriously. With great depth of thought and concentration he eagerly painted each seashell.
Foil Fish Art and Pre-writing Practice
I cut out several little fish shapes from thick card stock paper and covered them in tin foil. If you have an older preschool aged child, they can cut the fish out (with supervision) and help with covering the fish shapes in tin foil.
After all the fish were covered in tin foil, I set up an art tray for Little Bee to color the fish. At first I set up a tray using colored pencils, but the pencils didn't leave enough color on the fish for Little Bees liking. I replaced the colored pencils with markers and this made Little Bee much happier. He was able to leave a brighter and more distinct mark on the fish with the markers.
The point of this activity was two-fold. It was a fun art project for Little Bee and it also helped him develop fine motor control while holding a pencil and a marker. This is a wonderful way to give your child pre-writing practice.
Sensory Play Ocean Art for Kids
I prepared the ocean sensory tray for Little Bee to explore by filling it with tin foil fish, painted seashells, strips of cut seaweed (from green paper), sand, and small rocks. I showed Little Bee how to squirt glue onto his plate and then transfer the sand with a spoon onto the glued area on his plate. While I created my own ocean art masterpiece, Little Bee simultaneously created his own.
You may also enjoy visiting other sensory play activities on Mama's Happy Hive blog ~