Combining Art and Sensory Integration

Posted October 15, 2012 @ 5:27pm | by Danelle

Making art can be a great way for individuals with disabilities to develop fine motor skills and provide sensory integration experiences.  It can increase spatial skills, eye and hand coordination, and offer decision making opportunities.   Making art with textured items offers a good opportunity for all of these.

Find simple materials and let an artist start to experiment with them. 

 Cardboard is an easy material to find and explore.  Have the artist practice tearing pieces and peeling layers off of the cardboard.  Some cardboard is softer than others and easier to work with.  Interesting edges and patterns will be revealed.

 Colored tissue paper is another nice material.  Have the artist wrinkle and unwrinkle and tear into pieces.  Tissue paper can be unwrinkled and glued flat on paper to create interesting subtle wrinkles and surfaces that can be layered.  Tissue paper is fun for some artists because it makes noise when working with it. 

 Shiny papers are available everywhere.  Gift wrap or specialty papers offer interesting surfaces and textures.  Tearing, folding and unfolding paper create interesting textures and surfaces.

 Encourage the artist to start experimenting and exploring with materials.  Assess what the artist likes to work with and is enjoying.  Observe what materials the artist does not like and is struggling with.  Have the artist create an art piece using materials they enjoy.   As the artist continues to use materials and creates more art, encourage them to try some of the materials they may be struggling with again.   Continue to introduce new materials and offer support for materials they may be struggling with.  It is important to keep building on these basic skills and moving forward.

 For more ideas on creating texture collages that continue to build skills and exploring more art materials visit  ArtShop Collage and Texture Design lessons.   




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