Texture plays a large role in how we interact with and view the world on a daily basis. It can be observed through our senses of touch, sight and even sound. We recently spent time engaging our senses, and our inner artists, by exploring a variety of different textures using trace paper, glue, watercolors and flower petals.
The children dipped the trace paper and petals into a mixture of glue and watercolors and placed the materials on a larger sheet of paper to dry. Both the creation process and the final results abounded in discoveries about texture.
During the creation process, the children could note the thin, smooth textures of the trace paper and flower petals. As they dipped the materials into the mixture, they were greeted by new sticky and watery textures. They could also note the difference between the feelings of the trace paper before and after it was submerged in liquid as it transformed from a smooth, solid sheet into a mushy bunch.
Once the papers and petals were placed and dried, the final product looked very interesting. It had a three-dimensional aspect, with some areas appearing crinkled or rigid and others looking flat or round. This encouraged the children to make connections between visual and physical textures, noting that the areas that looked crinkled also felt rougher to the touch.
This tactile experience also allowed the children to practice their fine motor skills as they dipped, pushed and squished the different materials into the watercolor/glue mixture and onto the paper. Through this exploration the children were able to learn the important role that texture plays in art, both physically and visually, and how to create and change textures of different materials.