There’s something maginc about creating your own materials.

This Play Invitations offers children the opportunity to live a process of making choices, test ideas, and discover how use available resources.

Concepts such as reusingrecyclingform and functionand design can be explored creatively, amplifying possibilities to make original works.

What Could Lead Us to This Play Invitation

  • Children have been exploring different tools for mark-making;
  • Children are curious about the origin of things – where do brushes come from?
  • Children are excited about predictions, causes, and consequences.

Materials Needed

  • Tempera paints
  • Paper
  • Clothespins
  • Assorted materials

Setting up This Play Invitation

  1. Place the clothespins in a basket over the table.
  2. Place several diversified materials over the table that children can choose from. You can organize them inside divided serving plates.
  3. Lay the paper and tempera paints.

    Tip: You can collect the assorted materials with the children in a treasure hunt for “what could be a good brush?”.

How to Create the Brushes

  1. This is super fun. Demonstrate to the children how they can make their own clothespin brushes. How to open and attach the materials.
  2. Let them choose the materials to make their own brushes and try on the paper with the tempera paints.

How to Nurture the Natural Unfolding of the Child’s Identity during this Play Invitation

  • Children have the right to create their own tools. Not everything has to be bought. The educator needs to create opportunities for the child to understand the creative processes behind the instruments they use daily.

How to Nurture the Natural Unfolding of the Child’s Identity During This Play Invitation

  • PHYSICAL: Build on their fine motor skills.
  • SCIENCE: Cause and effect, testing materials, and predicting results.
  • ART: Understand the need for steps in an art process, and understand the composition of tools and the results they produce.


  • Invite children to continue exploring the idea of the origin of things by creating paper.

Book Recommendation

A book about the origin of the things that we have around us.