Patch-Work Paper Design

Patch-Work Paper Design is a fantastic way to get those fine motor skills working and the imagination running wild!
Developmental Area

There is so much to discover in art!

“Much like a patchwork quilt, inspiration that stirs and motivates me is made of many things” – Robert Reynolds


For this activity you will need:

Learning Goals

With this activity you will learn the following skills:

Process Description

Step 1

Prior to this learning opportunity, you can encourage children to bring old magazines or calendars from their home. During this activity, the educator can explain that instead of throwing away certain materials we can re-use them to protect our environment and reduce waste.

See the adaptation section below, for a fantastic video on plastic pollution and waste for children.

Step 2

Ask the children if they have you ever heard of patchwork before or collage making? Explain patchwork and show examples of quilts or patchwork art to the children to elicit curiosity.

Answer questions the children may have and draw attention to the secondary artistic pieces you show them (see picture 2 and 3 for some examples).

Step 3

The various colours can be placed in “colour-piles”, to easily use the paper pieces for the new design. Children may want to stick the ripped paper pieces on the paper how ever they think looks best.

Step 4

Give the children an opportunity to use and play with the materials own way. They may wish to sort the pieces of paper by shape, colour, size or place it on the paper in random orders.


The video below is a brilliant segue into plastic pollution and why we recycle. Children’s understanding may be based on their age and stage of development – use your knowledge of the child and expertise to determine how to adapt this learning opportunity. Introducing children to interesting and important topics, such as care for our environment, creates enriching conversations and learning opportunities.

Download this poster on preventing climate change – this can be used as a base to start interesting conversations on what small steps children and educators can do to make big changes.

Play Video

Reflective questions

Ask these questions during and after the learning opportunity for critical and self-reflection

Looking and responding

What type of patterns do you see? Have you seen that shape before? Tell me about your patch work design.

Do you recycle at home? What type of things can we re-use?

Author Bio

Wendy Oke
CEO, TeachKloud

TeachKloud is a cloud-based management platform for early childhood educators and parents!


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