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Beach Arts & Crafts Ideas


Footprints in the Sand

lay out a piece of butcher paper. Put some glue in a pan and have the child step
 in it and then walk across the paper. Then sprinkle some colored sand on the footprints.


Drawing on Sand Paper

Set out crayons and pieces of sandpaper and construction paper.  Let your children use
 the crayons to draw on the sandpaper and construction paper.  As they are drawing, ask
 them questions such as these:  "Which paper is easier to draw on?  Which paper makes
 the bumpiest lines?  What happens if you put the construction paper over the sandpaper?"


Sand Pails

Draw a sand pail shape onto orange paper and cut out. Then using sea animal sponges,
 or tag board with paint, dab on painted shape. Then use colored sand to sprinkle over
 the painted impression. Finally, if desired, add glue dots to the middle of each
 shape/impression, and sprinkle on colored glitter. Then attach a yarn handle.


Sand Painting

Mix small amounts of sand with different color of liquid tempera paint.
Give each of your children a spoon and a piece of finger-paint paper
 or butcher paper.  Put a spoonful of paint on each child's paper.  Let the
 children push their paint around with the spoons.  Add more paint as needed.


Sand Play Dough

Mix together 2 cups flour, 1 cup salt, 1 cup water and a few drops
 vegetable oil. Add 1/2 to 3/4 cup sand until the dough is the desired
 texture. Let your children play with the sand dough.  Encourage
 them to describe how the play dough feels as they work with it.

~ or ~

Mix 2 cups of sand, 1 cup of cornstarch and 1 cup of water, heat
 mixture while stirring. When thick, remove from heat and cool.


Sand Castings

Fill cardboard boxes or plastic dishpans with damps sand.  Have your children use fingers,
 craft sticks, or unsharpened pencils to draw designs in the sand.  Be sure the children
 etch their designs deeply.  When the children are finished, pour wet plaster of paris over the
 designs.  Allow the plaster to dry.  Write the children's names on the back of their castings
 with a permanent marker.  Carefully remove the castings from the sand to reveal the
 children's designs.  Brush or rinse off excess sand and let the children paint their castings.

Variation:  Instead of having children draw designs, press each child's barefoot firmly
 in the sand (the imprint must be at least one inch deep) and then carefully lift it straight up.
  Then fill with plaster of paris as described above.


Seashell Magnet Art

Materials Needed:
Magnet strips
Small dried or silk flowers
Low temperature glue gun

In the seashell's opening, arrange the small flowers.  An adult can then use
 a low temp. glue gun to secure these.  The magnet can be glued on the back.



Cut sunglasses shape out of cardboard. Glue on colored saran wrap to make lenses.


Sun Visor

Cut a sun visor shape from poster board or a light weight cardboard.  Provide crayons, markers,
 stickers, or other materials for your child to use to decorate the visor.  Use a hole punch to
 make a hole in each end of the visor.  Thread elastic string through the holes and tie securely.


Shell Art

Invite your children to do one or more of these activities.
Make sculptures by gluing shells onto small rocks or pieces of wood.
Trace around shells with crayons or markers to make designs on paper.
Create beach scenes by gluing sand and small shells on blue paper.


Colored Shells

Glue colored shells on a clip art beach picture


Star Fish

Cut out starfish shapes. Give the children glue, sand (sensory-texture) and
 some sequins (visual) to decorate the starfish. Hang them around the room.


Colored Sand and Salt Shakers

Gather several salt shakers and fill each with a mixture of equal parts of  clean
 sand and powdered tempera paint. Set the salt shakers, along with  construction
 paper and glue, on a table. Allow the kids to use the glue to  make ocean animal
 designs on their papers and then cover them with different salt  shaker mixtures.

~ or ~

Sand Jars

Use sand (or salt- its cheaper) mixed with dry tempera (add a tablespoon at a
 time to the salt/sand to achieve the color you want.) Use clear jars and make sand
 pictures by layering the colors. Use pencils to create points around the edges.
 Fill in top with glue to keep sand from shifting when done. Let dry and put lid on.


Sandy Footprints

Dip a child's foot in glue, then print onto paper. (Have a bucket of warm, soapy water and
 towels on hand). After a quick cleanup, the child can  sprinkle sand on the glue. Allow to dry.


Egg Carton Crabs

Use egg cartons. Cut them individually. Let the children paint them. Hole punch
 around the bottoms.  Attach pipe cleaners for legs and antennas if you wish.


Permanent Sand Castle

Combine 6 cups sand with 1 cup Wheat paste (Recipe follows.)  Add water until
 the mixture feels slightly sticky and packs firmly into shapes.  Set out plastic
 containers for molds and a large wooden board or a piece of cardboard.  Let your
 children work together to create a large sand castle.  Allow the castle to dry overnight.  

Variation:  Give each of your children a small wooden board or a piece of cardboard for
 building an individual sand castle.  Put all of the sand castles together to create a sand city.

Wheat Paste Recipe:  Combine 1/3 cup flour and 2 tablespoons sugar in a saucepan.
  Slowly pour in 1 cup water and mix well.  Cook over low heat,
 stirring constantly, until thickened.  Makes 1 cup.


Sand Pictures

Let your children use glue to paint pictures or designs on pieces of construction
 paper. Then have them sprinkle pinches of sand over the glue.  Let the
 glue dry a bit before having the children shake off the excess sand.


Beach In A Bottle

Last year I did Beach in a Bottle with my group at daycare. We used a small
plastic soda bottle filled it part way with sand then added small seashells
and little stones. We glued on the lid, set the bottle on it's side and
there you have it.....beach in a bottle.


Beach Scene

Using watercolor paints, encourage your children to paint a beach scene.



Color rock salt by soaking in alcohol and food coloring. I made blue, green,
and brown. Children make a collage using blue or green for the ocean, brown
for the sand and some uncolored rock salt for shells.  My class loved doing
this because the rock salt looks like gemstones.


Beach Box

Turn old shoe boxes into special reminders of the ocean.  Ask your children to cut out
 small fish that you can hang from the top of the boxes with thread.  Use bits of green
 streamer or ribbon for seaweed.  Children can paint glue on the bottom of the boxes
 and sprinkle real sand on them.  If you are planning an actual beach trip, do this project
 when you return and decorate your boxes with your ocean treasures -
sea glass, pretty rocks, and sea shells!


Beach Wreaths

Cut wreath shapes out of heavy white paper or tag board. Have children paint
 or color the wreath shape yellow. Let dry. Dribble glue all over wreath, then
 sprinkle on sand, let dry. Glue on shells, pebbles, seaweed, bay leaves,
etc. When dry, tie yarn in a loop through a hole at the top for hanging.


Sandpaper Print Beach Bag

Materials Needed:
Canvas beach bag (or any fabric - even construction paper works!)
Sandpaper (any grade)
Iron (Always have an adult present when using)
Ironing board
Wax paper and old towel

Draw on the sandpaper with the crayons. The drawing must be on the grainy
 side of the paper. You must press really hard with the crayon on the sandpaper.
  Set the iron to high and remember to always have an adult present when working
 with the iron.  Lay an old towel on the ironing board. Put your canvas bag on top of it.
 Put the sandpaper, with the crayoned side down, on top of the bag. Iron the back side
 of the sandpaper. You have to iron until you see a waxy print on the sandpaper.
  Lift the sandpaper!  Your sandpaper should have left a print.  While the bag is still
 warm you can color on it with crayons. This is great for touch ups or just
 black-lining your design.  Lay wax paper on top of the design. Lay the
 towel on top of that and iron one last time.


Sand Dough Art

Bring a bit of the beach home and use it to make play dough that hardens in the sun.
 Work together as you shape the play dough into summertime sculptures.

Materials / Ingredients Needed::
• measuring cup • 1 cup sand • saucepan • bowl • 1/2 cup cornstarch •
3/4 cup water • cookie sheet or tray • shells or pebbles • leaves

Let your child help you pour the ingredients into a saucepan. Cook until very thick.
Let mixture cool and then put it into a bowl.  Let your child knead the cooled mixture for
 a few minutes.  Together with your child form the dough into shapes or free form "sculptures."
 Press in shells or pebbles, if you wish.  Carefully lift the finished sculptures onto a tray
 or cookie sheet.  Place the tray of sculptures out in the sun to bake for 1-2 days until hard.
Cover any remaining mixture in bowl with plastic wrap for later use.

Ideas to Explore Together.
How does the dough feel when it is soft? When it is hard?
Tell me about your sculpture.

While you are having fun together, this activity helps your child develop eye/hand
 coordination, small muscle skills, and an understanding of cause and effect.


Shell Photo Frame

Family Dollar has a white square picture frame with seashells on it.
 It's great for a beach photo and only $1.00. A child could make a design
 on it with glue and sprinkle sand on the wet glue to make it more their own.


Pasta Shell Art

Set out several colors of paint along with uncooked pasta shells. Have your children
 paint the shells and allow them to dry. Then let them glue the colored shells onto
 heavy paper any way they wish to make collages. To extend the activity,
encourage the children to use some of the shells to create color patterns.


Seashell Bracelet

Materials Needed:
Fishing line
Sea shells

Have the children string beads and/or sea shells on fishing line.  Tie the bracelet around
 the child's wrist, making sure that it is loose enough for the child to slip on and off.



Give children a starfish pattern cut from construction paper or tag board and some sand.
  Have them put some glue on the cutout and sprinkle sand over it and then let it dry. 


Sand Drizzles

A simple project children of all ages can do. Drip,
 drizzle and swirl white craft glue on heavy construction paper or cardboard.
 Then sprinkle sand over the top, shake off the excess and let dry.


Beach Ball Painting

Set up a small round baby pool.  Cut white bulletin board paper into a class supply
 of circles sized to fit the bottom of your pool.  To try this jumbo painting experience,
 a child puts on an art smock and picks up a beach ball.  Using either squeeze
 bottles or paintbrushes dipped in washable paint, he puts some paint on the ball.
  Then he places the ball in the pool.  With the help of an adult helper, he moves
 the ball around by gently tilting and moving the pool.  Remove the paper and lay
 it flat to dry.  When everyone has done some beach ball painting, you'll have
 a collection of colorful beach balls do display throughout your classroom.


Beach In A Baggie

Materials Needed:
Ziploc® bag for each child
shaving cream
blue food coloring
small plastic crabs, fish, seagulls, or any other beach inhabitant

Allow each child to pour enough sand (but not too much) to cover the
 bottom of the Ziploc® bag. Add seashells and beach inhabitants
 so that they can be seen from the outside of the bag. Squirt some
 shaving cream into the bag.  Add a few drops of blue food coloring.
 Close the bag.  Allow the children to rub their fingers over the outside
 of the bag  to mix the food coloring and shaving cream to create foamy
 waves. The bag can then be reopened to add fish and other sea creatures
 into  the "water," if desired. I would suggest sealing the bag with blue
 or  clear packing tape so the children cannot get into the shaving cream.


Sand Sculptures

Materials Needed:
3 cups play sand
1 old big cooking pot
add 1 1/2 cups cornstarch to the sand in the pot
add 1 1/2 cups water to the mixture

Cook over low heat stirring constantly until it thickens. (about 2 minutes) then take off to cool.
  Once completely cooled - gives the kids a wad of it on newspaper to mold and
 make what they like.  It should dry hard - but didn't say how long it would take.


Beach Wreaths

Cut wreath shapes out of heavy white paper or tag board.
 Have children paint or color the wreath shape yellow. Let dry.
 Dribble glue all over wreath, then sprinkle on sand, let dry.
 Glue on shells, pebbles, seaweed, bay leaves, etc.
 When dry, tie yarn in a loop through a hole at the top for hanging.


Sandy Beaches

Materials Needed:
Paper, sand, white glue, glue brushes, pie tins,
 precut sun, beach balls, buckets, etc.

Assemble materials and pour glue into pie tins. Invite the children to paint
 pictures using white glue for paint. Then let them sprinkle pinches of sand
 over the glue. Wait a few minutes until the material has had a chance
 to stick, then shake of excess. Have the children make beaches by
 brushing glue across the bottom of light blue construction paper
 and sprinkling sand on the glue. When their papers are dry, let them
 paste on precut sun and boat shapes to create summer beach scenes.




Pre-K Fun Theme Pages are for educational reference only! 
No copyright infringement is intended.
I do not claim any of these as my own ideas.  
They are shared from friends and fellow group members.  
Thanks for sharing all your great ideas!


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