(This post contains affiliate links, at no extra cost to you. What that means is if you click and purchase something I will get a percentage of that sale. I participate in affiliate sales to help support my blog and to keep it running.)
Here is a really fun, simple art activity. You could even stretch this activity and make it a science activity! I can’t lie, I had as much, or more fun, with this activity as my children did.
First you’ll need some shrink film. link here
The next step depends on the age of your children. My girls are quite young so I decided to cut out the shapes for them. This makes the activity a lot less frustrating but it also takes out a bit of creativity they might want to express. I did ask the girls what they wanted.
If you have older children you could just give them a piece of shrinky paper and tell them to draw what they want!
TIP:I discovered later that you can just pull up and image on an iPad and then trace the image onto the shrinky paper. So easy!
Next my girls got to work coloring their little critters! While they colored I explained to them that we would put all our cuties on a cookie sheet and then put them in the hot oven. When they are you in the oven they will get hot and start to shrink.
After the girls got their shapes all colored we laid them out on some parchment paper on the cookie sheet. We talked about the sizes of the shapes and the colors. Then we tossed them in the ‘hot hot’.
This part might be the best part!! Make sure you turn on the oven light and let your children watch the magic. At first they didn’t do anything. We talked about whether the papers were hot yet and how long it would take for them to get hot? Within one minute they started to move and curl and shrink. The girls were so excited!
After 3 minutes, the shapes mostly were all flat and were no longer shrinking. We pulled out the tray and put the parchment paper on the floor so the shapes could be inspected! Even dad had to get in on this part! There is so much to talk about at this point. The size has changed, the colors have gotten brighter, the shapes have gotten a lot thinker and harder. Luckily the shapes cooled very quickly and we could investigate further, with our hands.
My oldest was most proud of her unicorn. My 2 year old loved putting the different colored crowns on her kitty. And mommy loves her Tinker Bell. Honestly I did make Tinker for my children but neither of them wanted her, so mommy got to participate!
There are so many fun ways to use these. The best part is the process!