Kids Art Projects

I have co-chaired the Art Appreciation program at Field Park Elementary School in Western Springs, IL for seven years. The program allows parents to go into the classrooms and teach the kids about art and artists. Since Art Appreciation is not a curriculum-based art program, we have a lot of freedom to expose the children to art they may never experience. We show them slides of artists, art movements and material-based art pieces. After we’ve viewed and discussed the slides we create cool art projects that I am happy to share.

Paper Art Projects for a Week

These are art pieces that can be made with people ages 5 to 95. They only require paper, glue markers and scissors. The mosaic and circus brain project uses all of the scraps left over from the other projects.

Supplies Needed:

Elmer’s Glue
8″x11″ Multicolored Card Stock
5″x5″ and /or 7″x7″ card stock
double-sided iridescent paper
Tissue Paper
Pipe Cleaners
Glue Gun/Glue Sticks
Cardboard Box Tops
Straight Scissors
Fancy Scissors
Exacto Knife

Shadow Boxes Scenes/Rooms

Line a Box with paper. If you are doing a scene, curve the edges of the paper inside the box so that it doesn’t look like a room. Create your scene/room out of cardstock. Extend the floor out with paper to accommodate furniture, etc.

Festive Hats

Glue together 3 pieces of 8 x 11 cardstock end to end. Measure head and trim hat leaving 4″ for gluing. Trim hat to desired height and shape. Add embellishments. Glue to head size. Finish embellishments.

House Lanterns

Fold the ends of 8″x11″ paper in by half an inch. Fold into 2 1/2″ quarters. Trim to desired height. Draw doors and windows. Make doors big enough to accommodate a battery-operated votive candle. Using and Exacto knife cut out doors and windows. Glue tissue paper on inside of windows. Glue together. Punch a hole in the roof (if you want to hang your lantern) and run a pipe cleaner through it. Glue roof and embellish. Place the candle in door opening.


Take a piece of cardstock and draw the outline of a scene or other design. Glue bits of tissue paper and card stock to your design. This is a good project when you have a lot of scrap paper.

Mexican Rugs

Take a 5″ x 7″ piece of card stock and glue (Elmer’s) slices of contrasting colored and cut cardstock in uneven stripes. Once glued, cut the “rug” into 5 uneven pieces and glue it to another contrasting color cardstock. Cut that piece and repeat. Embellish with gel pens or markers. Cut the edges to make a fringe. Separate the fringe and fluff. Mount on another larger piece of cardstock giving it a border.

Paint Chip Insects

Fold your paint chip in half (the white dividing line makes a nice body for a butterfly) and cut your wing shape. Once you make an uneven amount (5,7.9, etc.), glue to cardstock.


Iridescent Fish


Cut out the shape of a fish with cardstock no bigger than the piece of paper you will mount it on. Using markers and the iridescent paper, layer fins and scales. Mount on your cardstock.

Circus Brain Collage

Circus Brain is a yoga term to describe someone with a lot going on in his/her mind. This is a fun project. Using card stock, make a face. On another piece of card stock glue a bunch of cut up paint chips. The words on the chip add to the “activity” in the circus brain. On top of that cut a circus tent shape and add components of the circus. Glue together. You can put another piece of cardstock on the back for support.



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